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“Luxury Overwater Bungalows” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Anantara Veli Resort & Spa

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Anantara Veli Resort & Spa
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   Veligandu Huraa, 08190   |  
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Maroochydore, Australia
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Luxury Overwater Bungalows”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2009

We stayed at Anantara Veli as part of our honeymoon on middle of March 2009 (we also went to Banyan Tree).
The Anantara Transfer boats were extremely luxorious (much nicer than the Banyan Tree ones) thus the transfer was amazing to the island.
The island itself has three parts (Veli, Dhigu & Naladhu) Veli is a medium/small size and only has overwater bungalows, the Dhigu is a larger island with also overwater bungalows as well as mainland bungalows, and Naladu is a 5*plus island with no access. I actually liked Veli the best as it was small, intimate and most of the kids if any were all at Dhigu the larger island.
We stayed in the Deluxe Over-Water Bungalow, which was well worth upgrading to (from the normal Over-Water Bungalow). They were just amazing, the rooms/bungalows were so large and there were multiple decks to relax on too. The Terazzo bath was also amazing.
Food was great with lots of choices in restaurants, including thai, seafood, italian etc etc all on the 2 main island whcih were easily accessible.
One disapointment was the house reef. The house reef was quite a distance away, needed to take a canoe to a small unanhibated island and then snorkell there, but it just didnt seem safe with just the two of us and the fish were a bit crazy there (they bit quite a few ppl as the fish were breeding...).
If you are after a GREAT house reef, I would HIGHLY recommend Banyan Tree Vabinfaru. But if you are more after luxury in accomodation and style then Anatara is definitelly the better place to be.
The staff were also very very friendly and very good at this resort.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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587 reviews from our community

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  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
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1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2009

it was an absolutely awesone experience in our over water deluxe bunglow in anantara... the room was fabulous... and the bathroom was even better, with an oversize bathtub from where one could see the beautiful view outside... i hv to say this but its actually much more beautiful than the pictures on the anantara's site... n the pool was awesome... with fabulous view.... we had a great time there.. the food was also great.. all in all a great place...

  • Liked — the natural beauty around.... food... swimming pool... our deluxe over water bunglow!!
  • Disliked — nothing....
  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kuala Lumpur
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2009

Customer Service: We stayed in this resort for 4 nights & the services in this resort are excellent. The staffs are very helpful & friendly. All staffs including the front desk, restaurant staffs, water sport centre as well as the water taxi driver are very friendly & helpful.

Food : 73 degrees serves wide spread of food for breakfast. I particularly loved their fresh fruits & juices, Dinner - highly recommended thai restaurant, Baan Huraa. They served great food and their service is superb. Generally, food & beverages prices are relatively high.

Accomodation: we stayed on the over-water-bungalow (not the deluxe) and really loved the chalet. Although not so private, but generally on Veli, not many people around to bother you. So, wasn't a big issue for us. Our bungalow was facing the Baan Huraa restaurant & had a great view of the white sandy beach.

Overall, we enjoyed our stay in the resort & would highly recommend this resort to anyone without doubts.


  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Stamford, Connecticut
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2009

Excellent Property!!

Excellent food and Service!!

  • Liked — The scenic beauty
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
59 hotel reviews
Reviews in 54 cities Reviews in 54 cities
149 helpful votes 149 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2009

I painstakingly read every review for Anantara Veli and Anantara Dhigu so many times before traveling to Veli for four nights (followed by three at neighboring Naladhu and then eight at Coco Palm in the Baa Atoll) this August 2009. I've read the bad reviews for Veli and talked to most of those reviewers via private message and can conclude only one thing about their experiences- it's hard to be disappointed with the deluxe overwater bungalows on Veli, although I think it's fair to say that some or maybe most are impressed and happy with the overwaters that are non-deluxe as well. Perhaps for those that scrutinize more (no judgment! I do too!), you'd be better off selecting the deluxe- they were built after Anantara bought the property, at the same time as Dhigu, so you'll probably be happier going this route. They are newer, bigger, have big two-tiered decks, better views, more privacy, and bathtubs that open up to the water. I went into one of the beach bungalows at Dhigu and definitely preferred our Deluxe at Veli. I didn't go into one of the overwaters at Dhigu but they looked great from my kayak- big and luxurious. They may be nicer inside, but it was hard to tell. We were told that they have the same furnishings and are pretty much the same as the deluxe on Veli.

I preferred the island of Veli, however, for several reasons. There were less kids, and by far, less people. It seemed much more private on Veli. Plus, when you walked around the island on Veli, the whole island was your island! You weren't intruding on anyone's beachfront. If you found a set of chairs (sprinkled throughout the island), you knew they weren't the chairs of other guests (the opposite is true on Dhigu). However, as guests on the more private Veli, you could take a trip over to Dhigu (ten minutes max), and enjoy a swim in their pool, swim in the lagoon, snorkel, drink in their bars, have dinner in their restaurants, etc. In fact, the one thing I did prefer on Dhigu was their breakfast buffet- just better ambiance, more offerings, etc. So, no worries, we just went and had breakfast over there!

Customer service was excellent at Anantara- especially compared to Coco Palm Dhuni Kohlu where we went after Anantara. Also, while expensive, the food and wine, and cocktails, were much, much better at Anantara. We had really delicious meals every night. I hate to do so much comparison, but I also appreciated the way that women were treated much better at Anantara. I hope this comes across the right way, because I don't want to seem like an ignorant American tourist. But being a muslim country, I had many awkward experiences while in my bikini in the Maldives. I guess I half-expected it, but wasn't really sure what to expect on the other hand. At Anantara, it really was not a big deal to walk around in your bikini. The staff was about half international, half Maldivian, and I never felt awkward, even if I didn't have a sarong with me and I walked into the poolside bar to order a drink. While at CPDK, this was definitely not the case. Even while wearing my sarong, a waiter told me to leave and put more clothes on before ordering a glass of wine (and this is when I was standing outside, trying to be respectful!). Anyway, when in Rome, do as the Romans do. This is perfectly understandable. But if you're wanting to really relax and get away from it all, I think the Anantara tri-plex is a great choice, regardless of whether you stay at Veli, Dhigu, or Naladhu.

Another thing I loved about Veli- the walkways are built over coral, and we saw fantastic fish while walking everyday- this is something I really missed once we left Veli.

Questions? Ask away! Definitely know that you'll enjoy your trip, and if something is wrong, they will take care of it. I'm not wanting to create enemies with the family that reviewed Veli beforehand, but we share none of their concerns. We were treated excellently but also made sure to treat the staff excellently. We called the front desk with several different requests, and these requests were always tended to very quickly. As for the garbage, while we didn't see very much of it, I'm sorry, but guess where lots of this garbage from? Tourists! We should be MUCH more careful to take our garbage home with us so we can recycle it properly. Anantara is near the dump island- what a sad state of affairs. I am fascinated with the Maldives and have studied up on it quite a bit. Male has just started recycling (thank goodness!), and hopefully the islands will soon follow suit. Until then, I am only bothered when I see a plastic water bottle floating by because I am reminded at the true threat to paradise- humans. It's a good reminder for me.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2009

Well folks...this is how the journey begun....

Why do we choose the hotel and the trip?

Anantara offers the most competitive package price amongst all the other 5 star resorts in the island. It recites in South Male Atoll which serves the purpose for some of the best dive sites in the Maldives. Anantara is also a very well known resort chain around the world where it focuses on personable service to their guests....

The trip was originally planned to be our honeymoon, but it turned out to be more than a honeymoon....it is more like an underwater expedition and pure relaxation...


Prior to our trip, my wife and I have been researching for the resorts to visit for our honeymoon for a while. We got married in June 08 but we did not get to go on our honeymoon because of time. So after 1 year of settling down, we finally decided that we ought to take a plunge and just go for it...and Maldives did not dissapoint!

We flew out of Dubai International at 3 am to get to Male at 7am. Upon arriving, we could see the beautiful weather looming in the Maldivian sky as we commence our final approach in my favourite aircraft, the Boeing 777-300ER....

The queue in the airport immigration was long but the holiday mood has kicked in as soon as we felt the first bump as the landing gear touches the ground and we did not mind waiting the in the queue. Maldivian people are nice, full of smile and no worries at all. Soon we found ourselves collected our luggage and exited the door of the airport. To our surprise, the airport island is so small that the major transfer to the respective resorts were done by either taking an air taxi - yeap..air taxi - a little yellow Twin Otter aircraft with floats or by the resort's water taxi...how good was that?

We entered the water taxi and was offered chilled bottled water and a cold face towel.. The ride took about 35minutes and I must say that the clarity of the water already excited me even more...After 35minutes boatride, we arrived at the Atoll entrance, where I was so impressed by the boatways that was literally formed by dredging the shallow sea bed to make some kind of a local road way for transport vessel to travel between the 3 islands within the Resort Atoll.

Anantara Resort consist of 3 island, the Anantara Veli, Dhigu and Naladhu. Anantara Veli is where we stayed at. The three island was set out for different purpose (as I concluded)...Veli is more for the honeymooners, Dhigu is more family orientated and Naladhu is for those who has managed to get onboard the celebrity status much the same as G.Clooney or Kate Moss..but nonetheless...we felt like celebrities ourselves because this is how the Anantara staff made us feel like.

When the boat moored, we were greeted by 3 staffs. One was holding and playing a little drum to welcome us in the traditional Maldivian custom whilst the other two were ready to help us carry our luggages. We were offered a very nice Mojito at 9am whilst checking in...(how good was that?) and then off we went to our "over the water bungalow". We booked for the sunset bungalow and my God the setting was beautiful. The bungalow has a sunset deck where you can chill and sunbake everyway you wanted and on the side there was a staircase leading you into the water straight away!
The bathroom was also exceptional. The setting was very nice and ergonomic. Everything was thought out properly and functional...very good.

By this time, we had forgotten about resting, we changed into our snorkelling gear and off we went snorkelling for an hour.

Breakfast, Dinner and Lunch was great too. As we booked for half-board, we were allowed to dine with 2 restaurant/bar on the Veli island and 3 on Dhigu island. One thing I thought that it could be improved is the number of restaurant. I think having an additional 1 or 2 more restaurant would be even better. Food was fresh and very well cooked. Above all, we enjoyed our dining experience there.


The resort offers an array of exciting activities. Most of them (obviously) are water sports. They are organised and run by another company called Aquafanatics. They are extremely professional. Things like diving, kayaking, windsurfing, sailing, wakeboarding, surfing, and many more are readily available on your footsteps...You can book up to 1 hour in advance with no problems.

I must be honest. I am a keen diver and the I am so impressed with the equipment that they used! It is more than 7 star top of the line equipment!! Even if you have dived over 7000 dives, you would still be very impressed...

Staff and People

This is one area that I have to give Anantara 4 thumbs up. Personable is the word. Every staff will know your name, how you prefer your coffee in the morning, your ice water, your preferred beer and many more without you having to remind them over and over again. You only need to tell them once!

They are very friendly and warm. Anantara employed a very multicultural staff. You find staff from all over the world.

This trip was really memorable and exciting. From the moment you approach till you depart, it was the first time in my life that I really did not want to leave. I just want to stay there forever!

We also met 3 other lovely couple in this trip. Alok and Tina (from LA), Lazaros and Maria (from Greece) and one other couple from UK. We spent most of our times together in the island and underwater. Not to mentioned our divemasters/instructors/diveguides/boat master and boat captain...you guys are the best!!

So, would I recommend Anantara to the world? ABSOLUTELY WITHOUT A DOUBT!!

Lastly, I would like to thank all the staff that has made our trip so lovely and memorable...

You guys are the best!!!

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Anantara Veli Resort & Spa

Address: Veligandu Huraa, 08190
Location: Maldives > Kaafu Atoll > South Male Atoll > Dhigufinolhu Island
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Dhigufinolhu Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Anantara Veli Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 50
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Retreat hand-in-hand to one of the most naturally stunning destinations on earth, a romantic paradise enveloped in soft white sands and turquoise waters. Just 20 km by speedboat from the airport in Male, delight in the private luxury of your own over-water bungalow, with all the comforts of home and then some. Unwind in your room, either over water in the crystal lagoon, or from your Ocean Pool Bungalow, with private pool and ocean views offering beach and lagoon access a few minutes stroll from your room, or admire the kaleidoscope of exotic fish and corals just steps from your over water and deluxe over water bungalow. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Anantara Veli Hotel South Male Atoll
Anantara Veli Resort And Spa

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