We had been to this island 4 times when it was 3* Nakatchafushi and it has always had a special place in our hearts. They then closed the island and re-opened as Huvafenfushi and we had always wanted to go back. Last month we were lucky enough to make it!
One of the best things about this island is that it is in a great position and small enough to walk around in about 15 mins. If you think you would be bored in the Maldives generally, then perhaps a bigger island would be the best choice for first timers. However, for us it is the perfect spot and we were not disappointed.
We had read the reviews prior to the re-furb and it is obviously a general view that the island needed an update but we were fortunate to go there straight after the re-furb and we couldn't have been happier.
It is sad to note that the service has received quite a lot of negative comments in TA but they have a new GM (Marco) who has only been there a short while and all we can say is that the service was second to none. Perhaps those issues have been addressed since Marco came to the island because we did not have one complaint about service at any time during our stay. In fact, Marco and other staff were regularly chatting to guests to make sure they were happy with their stay and if anything could be improved upon. I have to say, when it came to our party, we could not find one fault. The Manager's Cocktail Party on the Champagne Deck is a great touch - what a fabulous setting and great to be able to talk to the management IF you do have any concerns or just questions in general....
We stayed in a Beach Bungalow. Even though our teenage daughter stayed in our room, the room never felt cramped and the outdoor bathroom was wonderfully spacious with the two different showers, huge bath, double basins, plunge pool and garden. The room was kept beautifully clean at all times and Wow, what a feature the bar is! Great design!
It was great to have our own Butler to look after us and as we were there for a special celebration, we did call on their services a couple of times and everything was arranged as we wished. Thank you Bassi!
We were on half-board, which was a God-send because like all 5* islands in the Maldives, nothing comes cheap. However, you get what you pay for and if you want a 5* experience then you have to expect 5* prices. Having said that, we did think the cost of the night fishing and jet-skiing were a little bit o.t.t., even for 5* Maldives! However, it did mean our teenager was never bored!
What they do give you on a complimentary basis is lots of bottled water - a must when you are in the Maldives and on most other islands, you have to pay for this. Not to mention the bottle of champgne on ice on arrival in our room - a nice touch!
To have half-board, dinner is taken in Celsius - we loved this restaurant and it was such a bonus that it was not a buffet. We had wonderful service from such a great team without having to keep getting up and down to serve ourselves. Nothing was too much trouble and we can't praise them highly enough. The menu in this restaurant was excellent and between our party we had many memorable meals. Special thanks to Suschita and his team.
Lunchtime we ate at Fogliani's and this was the highlight of our day because we had a table under the shade of the trees, served by more lovely waiters who got to know our requirements very early on! Twice during this holiday, when we requested a slight "tweak" to the menu, they had no hesitation in calling the chef to the table to check exactly what we wanted, then went off to create our dish - at no stage did the two chefs ever give us the impression we were a pain - in fact, quite the opposite! Don't ever change this Huvafen - it is a great touch and very much appreciated!!!!
We did not eat at "Raw" at all during our stay as it was not our kind of food but we did eat at "Salt" one evening. The setting of both of these restaurants is beautiful. When the jetty is illuminated at night, it looks stunning. The champagne deck is a great addition!
"Salt" has charming outside decks where you can sit under the stars and see the fish swimming beneath you - a great location. The seafood platter was HUGE - when they say it is for 2, they should mean 4! All of the food and wine was served by very friendly and professional staff in a wonderful atmosphere. Sadly I was not very hungry on the evening we dined here so I ate very little but everybody else said their food was delicious!
The pool area is stunning and even though the island was 60% full you would never know it! The loungers are extremely comfortable and are doubles! No fighting for sunbeds here! As soon as you sit down, you are given a water spray, cold towel and complimentary bottles of water. The bar staff then bring out mocktails/smoothies from time to time, which change day to day. They were always delicious! There are also some nice "banana leaf" shaped sunbeds under the shady trees so there is something for everyone. The infinity pool is huge and inviting!
The bar area was always very quiet but as soon as you want something, the staff are on the case! They also serve bar snacks there, which we tried on our first day and they were delicious. There is a wonderful deck in front of the bar where you can sit and admire the stunning view. One evening whilst we were there, they had a three piece band with a fabulous singer - it's a shame this isn't on more than one night as it was heaven listening to the band under the stars and drinking cocktails - paradise!
To sum up, Huvafenfushi was everything we thought it would be and as always, tears were shed as we left. Marco, you are doing a great job there - please send our thanks to all of your lovely team for a fabulous holiday - they are a credit to you. We hope to be back SOON!
If you have a beach bungalow, ask for one away from the water sports centre. We had 6 & 7 and...
See more room tips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.