The transfers from Male airport to the island were scheduled well and ran smoothly, when we arrived at Holiday Island it was beautiful and we were really happy. That faded quickly when we tried to upgrade to all inclusive and were told it was going to cost a further $300 more for the week than we were advised in previous email correspondence (which I had a copy with me). The reception staff were very rude and we had to arrange a further meeting with the reservations manager for that evening to get it sorted, and thankfully we did but it still ruined our first day on the island. Having the same table for each meal was great, however it meant having the same waiter, and whilst he was pleasant when he spoke you could tell he didn't want to be there and was just saying standard lines in hope to get a tip. We could see that other waiters were very friendly and joking with other guests so I'm not saying all waiters were like that, but we were just unlucky.
The free transfers to Sun Island was great to break up the holiday, but the price of food and drink is quite high so you wouldn't want to be going over too regularly if you are already paying all inclusive on holiday island.
The beach and water was beautiful and the rooms were clean and had everything you needed (even if they are outdated). We stayed in room 177 which is a good 5 mins walk from reception and main bar but when you are eating so much nice food the exercise is good. These rooms were the quietest and the water was only 10 metres from the doorstep. Whereas on the other side of the island (jetty side) the water is 50 metres from your door, so it really depends if you prefer to be close to main bar or the water.
We hired snorkelling equipment for $20 for the day but the reef off the island is nothing spectacular, a couple of small fish and small sharks is all we saw. So if you are going to go snorkelling it is probably worth paying the extra to go on the excursion. The night fishing was okay but you were just handed a handline and expected to go from there, there was no conversation or introduction to the crew, I'm not sure if they didn't speak English or couldn't be bothered.
As good as all-inclusive is cost wise, you really have to know where and what times you can get access to all the benefits and the fact that the beach bar doesn't serve spirits is really frustrating -only beer.
We got married in Koh Samui the week before arriving to Holiday Island and the people in Samui were so friendly and amazing without expecting anything but a thank you. Coming to the Maldives where no one would go out of their way for you or rarely greet you with a hello. They look at you like you are bothering them before you even asked anything, and once they do their 'job' (nothing nice or out of the ordinary) they would wait around for a tip. I'm hoping that this was just a bad experience with the Maldivian people but I wouldn't be returning in a hurry because of that reason, even though the Maldives are so picturesque it is the people and the service that make your holiday enjoyable in my opinion.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- At Holiday Island Resort & Spa, the rush of time slows. The crystalline seas and soft, sandy shores remain as nature made them, beckoning guests to one of the world’s last unspoiled paradises. Shape your dream holiday at this secluded Maldives beach hotel, where pristine beauty, personalized service and modern indulgences have formed a retreat of unparalleled allure. Explore the underwater treasures of one of the world’s premier dive locations. Sip a cocktail on your private terrace as you watch the sun dip below the horizon. Or simply lounge on the white coral sand and soak up the radiant sun. Escape to this tranquil, wonderfully relaxed choice of Maldives beach resorts, and discover a tangible embodiment of your ideal tropical paradise. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Island Resort And Spa
- Holiday Island Hotel South Ari Atoll
- Hotel Holiday Island
- Holiday Island Maldives
- Holiday Island Resort Maldives