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“My Beautiful Vilamendhoo :-)” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa

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Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   South Ari Atoll, 20187   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Vilamendhoo
Certificate of Excellence 2014
United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
“My Beautiful Vilamendhoo :-)”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2013

Ok we won't bother mentioning the international flight because everyone travels from different countries on different airlines and whatever happens on your flight has no reflection on your island :-) Here we go:

We arrived at male international airport and were quickly taken to the Vilamendhoo's private lounge at the sea plane terminal by bus. The new terminal is great after being treated to a nice cold towel you can help yourself to a soft drink and chill out in the air conditioned lounge or take a seat outside in the sunshine. The sea plane flight as expected was fantastic with breath taking views of the Maldives (camera's ready). The flight took an estimated 35 mins including a stop off at Mirihi to drop off some other lucky travellers. On arrival at Vilamendhoo you immediately realise you have arrived in paradise it really is breath taking ! After being greeted by a member of staff with a cold towel, a glass of ice tea and a quick check in you are then taken to your room.

Beach Villa
The first part of our holiday was spent in a beach villa on the north side of the island. The villa was very modern, air conditioned and spacious it has a large comfortable bed, plenty of storage for clothing including hangers, a full length mirror for the ladies, a flat screen tv, dvd player, coffee machine (received 2 free capsules daily), Mini bar, hair dryer (which only works on the sockets inside your villa not in the outside bathroom), a bed settee with lots of scatter cushions. The outside bathroom is fantastic with his and hers sinks, large mirror, shaver socket, hand towels, face towels, bath and beach towels, soap, cotton buds, large shower with shower gel and shampoo provided. At the front of the villa there is a small terrace with 2 wicker chairs and a table. You also have 2 sun loungers on the beach in front of your villa.

Jacuzzi Water Villa
Our second half of our holiday we spent in a Jacuzzi Water Villa. Our JWV was facing the north side of the island but there was plenty of sunshine on the sundeck all day. Again the JWV was very modern but slightly in need of a little tlc here and there. It had the same amenities as the BV but was much larger and had an ipod docking station. The bathroom was slightly larger with the same amenities as the BV. It also had a Jacuzzi situated at the back of the villa on it's own secluded terrace with a double sun lounger. At the front of the JWV there is a sun terrace overlooking the ocean with 2 sun loungers and a small table with 2 chairs, there are also steps straight down into the ocean. On an evening it is nice to sit with a drink on your decking with your own flood light switched on illuminating the ocean watching the fish swim by.

Restaurants
We used both of the buffet restaurants due to our upgrade. The first half of our holiday we used the Funama restaurant (family side) where you are allocated a table upon arrival. We found this restaurant to be the better of the 2 due to the fact they seemed more organised by never running out of food items and the food always seemed warmer. The staff seemed more efficient by never letting your glass run dry. On the second half of our holiday we used the Ahima restaurant there was no table allocation you could sit anywhere you liked at any meal time. At this restaurant you always seemed to be waiting for food items to be topped up and the food never seemed warm enough. The food menu served in both restaurants were the same as each other. We found the buffet to be a little repetitive at times but generally the food served was of good quality and you could always find something to eat.

If you are on an AI package there is an excellent choice of beverages including:
Tea, coffee, soft drinks, Carlsberg/Tiger Beer, red/white/rose wines all very good, house brand spirits and a choice of 10 cocktails. Some items of the mini bar in your room are also included on AI ie beer, ice tea, ice coffee, soft drinks and water. The spirits and wine in your mini bar are not included in your AI package. However, if you ask at the bar for drinks to take back to your room they will happily give you a very large glass of wine or house spirits to take away. You also receive 1 half bottle of Champagne on ice free this is left in your room on your first night.

Spa
The spa offers a variety of treatments and the staff are very professional. We upgraded our free 15 minute spa treatment on our AI package to a treatment for couples which included a 90 minute full body massage and a glass of Champagne which was absolutely fantastic.

Pools
Both pools are immaculate and there were always plenty of loungers available. The infinity pool (adults only) over looks the ocean and water villas with it's own resident Heron who regularly floats by. The Boashi bar pool (family pool) is in the middle of the island and has it's own bar and a small play area for children. If you are an adult it makes no difference which accommodation you are in or which restaurant you are allocated you can use either pool.

Bars
There are a few bars on the island for a quiet night you can use the Asian Wok bar where you can sit on the terrace and watch the fish in the illuminated ocean. The Sunset Bar is also a quiet chilled out bar (adults only). If you fancy a more lively night head for the Bonthi bar (families welcome) which is open 24 hour where they provide entertainment most evenings including live music and crab racing. Again if you are an adult you can visit any bar no matter what accommodation you are staying in or which restaurant you are allocated.

Beaches
Before we arrived we were really worried about what we had read of the lack of beach's at Vilamendhoo but we were more than happy with them. The south side of the island has the best beaches. The north side has beach erosion so there are a lot of sand bags but has a nice breeze.

The Reef
The reef at Vilamendhoo is simply amazing and is where we spent most of our holiday, it's what makes the island special. The easiest access to the reef is on the south side between the service jetty and the sunset pool. The reef is only a few metres from the shore in places with a large variety of fish and coral. The reef on the north side seems to have more fish but the reef is not as pretty and the current was much stronger than the south when we were there.

Summary
Vilamendhoo is a fantastic paradise island with a beautiful reef. The staff are very friendly and attentive. The accommodation is modern and clean. The food and drink are of a good standard. There are a variety of bars and entertainment to accommodate for couples or families. We can highly recommend this island.

Tips & recommendations:
Take your own snorkel equipment, it's extremely expensive to purchase on the island.
Take a small torch for night times it gets dark in places on some paths.
Make sure you have camera's handy for your sea plane transfer.
Try the spa it's excellent.
We can recommend The All Day Cruise the food is excellent, all drinks provided with a potential of seeing Whale Sharks and Manta's (we did) ending in a Champagne sunset (approx. 240usd per couple).
Take plenty of 1usd bill's for tipping (tipping is not compulsory).
Upgrading your room - we upgraded our room from a BV to a JWV but to be honest the BV was so good we did not think it was good value for money. We think a JBV would be a good compromise as we like to be on the beach.

Hope you enjoyed the review we have tried to make it more about the island and less about us. If there is anything we have or have not covered and you would like to ask a question about it please don't hesitate to contact us. We are sure that if you choose this island you will not be disappointed :-)

Room Tip: In our opinion the South side had the prettiest beaches and we would be happy with a BV
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Lugano, Switzerland
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2013

We stayed at Vilamendhoo Island for 10 days: from Male you can reach it with a flight with MAT (Maldives Air Taxi) which lasts 20 minutes and round trip cost 330 USD each person. The booking is done by the resort directly and you pay it while the checkout. This was great.
What we did not really enjoy was the fact we booked the flight from Male to Dubai at 23:00, and the Resort booked the flight from Vilamendhoo to Male at 15:00 so that we needed to stay in Male 8 hours. Luckily Vilamendhoo arranged a Guide which drove us through Male for a 4 hours visit that was great and made our waiting less painful.
About the Resort itself:
(1) checking is after 13:00pm, so in case of early arrival, no way to enter your room before.
(2) rooms are really nice and spacious, cleaned twice a day. no animals or bugs inside. few ants.
(3) hotel facilities are very good (tennis, badminton, gym and soccer field are really nice). If you do not have All Inclusive, you pay 8-12 USD for tennis, 5 USD for gym (or 25 USD a week).
(4) many and varied interesting activities organised by Resort and Euro Divers, spacing from 30 (Sunset Boat Trip) to 200 USD (half day Fishing)
(5) restaurants (3 different) are good with lot of choice
(6) the reef around the island is really nice with hundreds of colourful fishes, including small sharks, turtles and stingrays. suggested for snorkeling fans.
(7) SpA is nice, nothing special, with a price/quality that is lower than other SpA we tried last years.
(8) Play room with Darts, Billiard (2x), Snooker, Table Tennis and Tablesoccer. Plus a vast public library with books and magazines in all languages.
(9) Beautiful sunset pool, only adults allowed, so no noise around.
What we did not like:
(1) Internet is really expensive, not for free
(2) Bottled still water is not for free (3 USD) with Full Board arrangement. On a weekly basis this means quite a lot with an outside temperature of 32'C.
(3) Few daily flights, and the last is at 4pm
(4) Breakfast can be done no later than 09:30am, which is really disturbing if you are on holiday and want to sleep a while.

Room Tip: - Beach Villas are good. We had room 180 on the beach with private sleeping chairs.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Norwich, United Kingdom
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2013

We decided to go back to Vilamendhoo Island as it was my Husbands 70th birthday and it was six years since our last visit, in that time the island has had a major refurb but we have to say it was much improved and very tastefully done. There now two swimming pools and personally we don't think they are necessary with the beautiful warm sea but I must admit the infinity pool was used a lot.
We had a wonderful time and hope to visit again soon
Jenny & Roger

Room Tip: Beach jacuzzi rooms were excellent, only a few steps to the sea.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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Larkfield, Kent
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2013

Vilamendhoo 3/3-18/3
We booked this holiday over a year ago and as the holiday approached we became more and more excited, it’s been 4 years since our last visit to the Maldives and our first visit to Vilamendhoo since the refurbishment, (we only visited as day guest whilst staying at Lily Beach).
We were joined by our friends and decided to email the resort asking for rooms close to each other, the reply stated that rooms were allocated on the day and that our request had been noted.
We arrived after a long journey with Thomson, I must say that despite the aged Boeing 767, the flight, crew and service was far better than I expected, Transfer from Male to Vilamendhoo was smooth but drawn out as it seemed that our luggage was last off the plane which delayed our transfer by Trans Maldivian Airways sea plane, (DHC-6 Floatplane), the transit through to the dedicated TMA terminal was easy to follow with First Choice local representatives guiding you along, the seaplane terminal provided cool towels and complementary soft drinks which were a god send after the long flight also you are required to fill in your island registration form, this form asks for basic details and also has a disclaimer which if signed absolves the islands owner from liability if something goes wrong, (it’s up to you whether you sign this or not, I also declined to enter my credit card details on this form due to obvious reasons), please note that during our stay the transfer airline has changed, after an American investment both companies that transfer customers to their respective islands have all but in name merged, transfers to all destinations south of Male are by Maldivian air taxi, (slightly older aircraft), and all transfers to north of Male by TMA.
On arrival at Vilamendhoo we were greeted with a drink and cool towels, we were quickly allocated our rooms, 169/170, not quite where we had asked for but boy am I glad it was these two, our rooms were on the North side of the island which, in my view was the better presented side, there was enough shade and breeze to always stay comfortable, we found that the south side, as other people have stated, bereft of breeze became slightly stifling , there are plenty of thing to do on this island, if you prefer to just chill out that’s fine if you want to participate in activities there are plenty of these, from kayaking, diving, windsurfing, putting, tennis, badminton, table tennis, gym and an air conditioned games room.
The resort bars served daily cocktails, Tiger or Carlsberg beer, lesser quality brands of spirits than premium named brands, I must say that these alleged lesser quality brands proved to be very drinkable and I can be fussy with wine but found the house red and white also very drinkable, the restaurant was of a very high standard, I am a bit picky and managed to eat for two weeks without having to look for something that I liked, the food was varied and the puddings were to die for, I recommend the daily filleted fish, my only complaint was that I over ate, my fault I know, Oh and the rude members from other nations that haven’t quite mastered the art of queuing.
All the staff including those behind the scenes were very polite and would be very attentive, room boy did all the basics but did not excel himself, he seemed to be new.
The two weeks passed by all too quick and I would recommend this island to all, the island does show signs of erosion from the relentless weather and part of the beach sand has been moved by the tides exposing the sand bags that are used as a base, I do not blame the management for not keeping things pristine, as it would cost a small fortune to do this, we did see evidence of remedial maintenance but realise that this is an uphill struggle against the elements.
A special thanks to our friends Michael and Jayne for joining us on this holiday and looking forward to visiting again.
Joe

Room Tip: Choose the North side for the breeze, rooms from 165 - 178
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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LowestoftUK
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2013

My wife and I spent a week at the Vilamendhoo resort. What a lovely place. This was our first time to the Maldives so we have nothing to compare it too. But It was all we wanted and expected. Location is breath taking, stunning sunrise and sunsets. We stayed in a JWV, rooms cleaned morning and night and kept spotless. The island was pretty quiet and the adult side of the island was very peaceful. Drinks were fine and there was a choice of 6 cocktails on the AI. Food selection was great and the service was good. We can't fault the place and are gutted that we probably wont return for a long while due to having our little girl which this type of resort isn't suited too. Snorkelling on the house reef is an experience we will never forget. Pools are really clean and bar service good. Awesome gym and sports facilities and very efficient sea plane transfers.

only down point is the amount of sand bags about the place. But you've got to protect these islands some how.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
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Plymouth, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2013

We booked to go away for our 25th Wedding Anniversary and stayed in the jacuzzi water villa. It was by far the best holiday I have experienced and would recommend Vilamendhoo to anyone wishing to visit the Maldives. I cannot fault anything about the Island, everything for me was just perfect.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Watford, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

We went here for a special occasion and upgraded everything that we possibly could.
Booked the holiday with First Choice as they were by far the cheapest (comparing the same room, flight etc).
The flight to Male was good, we travelled Premium class. Although it is an 11 hours flight, it passed quite quickly. The transfer from the International airport to the seaplane airport was quick and easy.
We waited about an hour in the air conditioned lounge for our sea plane, this wasn't a problem as there are complimentary hot towels, soft drinks and there is even a shower if you so desire.
The transfer by sea plane was great, it took about 40 minutes. Make sure you take your camera or video, there are some lovely views over other islands, plus you will get an early view of Vilamendhoo. Make sure you take something cool to change into as your luggage doesn't always go on the same plane as you and you could be waiting a while for it.
Upon arrival we had to wait in reception until we were booked in. This wasn't too bad as you could get drinks from the bar located next door. Depending on the time you arrive, as for food, we didn't know about this and had to wait for something to eat at meal times.
You will be escorted to your room. We had a jacuzzi water villa which are quite a bit more costly than the beach jacuzzi villas and considerably more than the beach and garden villas.
It was worth it though. We had room 306 which wasn't too far up the jetty. Some of the water villas are at the end of the jetty, although they are very nice and probably more private they are quite a hike.
Anyway the villas were beautiful, waking up to the view of the Ocean is breathtaking. You can look at the website to see what is inside so I wont go on too much. The Beach and Water jacuzzi villas are adult only, which is a bonus as the whole area surrounding them is not open to children.
The complimentary bottle of Piper Heidsieck Champagne was very welcome!

If you are in the Jacuzzi villas you have use of your own restaurant, The Ahima Restaurant, water villas have their own bed around the infinity pool, although we only ever used the beach or the villa deck.

The food was fantastic. Not as much choice as the larger all inclusive hotels, but the quality was much better. The staff could not do enough for you. The same can be said about the bar (Sunset Bar). There is quite a good choice of all inclusive drinks, although they do charge you for cocktails (apart from the daily cocktail which changes and are sometimes a bit odd).

There are other dining options such as the Asian Wok and the Hot Rock, we didn't try them as we were happy with our dining arrangements, plus these incurred and additional cost. There is also a snack menu available at the bars.
The beach and surrounding house coral are fantastic, just what you would expect for the Maldives.
Although the hotel was 100% full, it never seemed it. In fact we often wondered where everyone was. I think it was a lot busier in the non-adult section but even that didn't seem busy at all.

A few tips:
Take single dollars for tipping.
Do not buy anything in the island shop, everything is over priced.
You don't need to take towels of any kind as they are all provided.
Definitely take your snorkel gear, you cannot go to the Maldives and not look at the reef and fish.
If you can afford it, go for the water villa. You do not get insects or geckos bothering you at all.
You do not need to take any shoes as no one wears them. Believe me it is a waste of time.
Dress is casual.
Take a rash vest for snorkelling, the sun is very hot and you can easily burn whilst in the water.
Try the diving, it is reasonably priced at Euro Divers.

Loved it, we will definitely be going back, no doubt about it.

Room Tip: If you are prone to insect bites, then stay in a Water villa, there are none there at all. If you d...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa

Address: South Ari Atoll, 20187
Location: Maldives > Alifu Atoll > Southern Ari Atoll > Vilamendhoo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Vilamendhoo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 184
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Vilamendhoo Island Resort, surrounded by a beautiful lagoon, an excellent house reef and long stretches of white, sandy beach, is the only Resort on the island of Vilamendhoo, South Ari Atoll. It is 900 meters long by 250 meters wide, about 55 acres. Your seaplane transfer from Ibrahim Nasir International Airport is a scenic, 25 minute flight. 184 Rooms include 30 Jacuzzi Water Villas, 30 Jacuzzi Beach Villas, 111 Beach Villas and 13 Garden Rooms. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Vilamendhoo Island Hotel Vilamendhoo
Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa Maldives
Hotel Vilamendhoo Island

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