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“SUPERB HONEYMOON”

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Vilamendhoo Island Resort & Spa
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Vilamendhoo
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 27, 2012

Stayed in a beach bungalow just down from the Asian wok, for 2 weeks in October on an all inclusive basis. We had the most amazing time, as soon as you arrive on the island you are welcomed with a punch cocktail and a cold towel giving you time to enjoy the moment. Quick check in and taken to your room almost immediately. Rooms are great, very clean and tidy, great décor and great channels on tv whenever you want a night in. Outdoor bathroom is lovely, although outdoor toilet needs a bit of getting used to. You have a choice of mini bar items but we stuck to the all inclusive drinks only. Its great to sit on your balcony first thing in the morning and last thing at nice just looking out to the ocean. You get you own sunbeds so you don't have to worry about getting up early to get a bed. They are right there waiting for you on the beach outside your room!! The reception and restaurants are all sand floor which really gives a great feel to the place so you don't actually need any shoes for the whole holiday if you don't want to. Ladies, do not take heels, you will not need them. I just wore flip flops for the whole time. The sand is white and the sea is crystal clear. The reef is amazing. you don't even need to go into the sea and you can see sting rays and sharks right at the shore line hunting fish. I could have watched them for hours. We went snorkelling every day. Go out to the reef drop off (edge of the reef before you hit the big deep ocean), the fish are amazing. Amazing colours. I recommend investing in an underwater camera!!! On our last day we saw a sea turtle. My dream came true!
On our last night we walked to the end of the water bungalow jetty to watch the sun go down. WOW what an amazing view!
You get a 15 min free massage which i thoroughly recommend you take, there is a glass bottom floor which you can watch fish on while having a massage. you don't get any pressure about booking any massages after so don't worry. You also get a free sunset cruise which is great as well, they take you right out to watch the sun set and then as you come back to shore, they manage to get the sun setting behind Villamendhoo island making a great photo opportunity.
There are fruit bats hanging in the trees above you during the day.
The food in the restaurant was amazing. It has got me into curries big time. Such a great choice of vegetable and meat curries. So tasty and you always get a choice of mild or hot. There is pasta, roast beef (which tastes just like back home) Roast chicken (also tastes exactly like back home) I could go on and on about the food but it really was so nice, such a wide variety to suit everyone.
We could walk round the island in just under half an hour and that was a slow walk as there was always something to see...As far as i could see all villas had superb views and i would have been happy being in any one of them.
Last but not least, the staff are fantastic. They made our holiday. Each and every one of them. So friendly and welcoming! So thank you Villamendhoo Island. It was a honeymoon to remember and we will be back...one day.

Room Tip: buy an underwater camera and invest in a snorkel set
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank MelroseK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 21, 2012

Amazing island, very relaxing with great watersports if you manage to venture of the sunlounger! Also a lot of wildlife to see on the island. Great selection of food and the staff are extremely helpful. Would love to return, when finances allow.

Room Tip: The beach villas are lovely, with amazing views. There are designated sun loungers for you on the b...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Acatchpole
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 21, 2012 via mobile

We travelled to vilamendhoo for two weeks as a belated honeymoon. My expectations were high and they were exceeded in everyway (except one!!)

We stayed in water villa 330 which I had requested after reading reviews about the amazing sunset and privacy. This was correct- the only thing I would say is you get a lot of noisy peopl on the walkway at the end morning and watching the sunset. Our room itself was amazing- the view waking up to the ocean and on the last morning dolphins was amazing. The room was well looked after by our room boy and lovely flower pictures left on the bed.

We at in both restaurants ( as we had early morning dives) and the ahmini ( adults only) restaurant is definately nicer it is smaller and more personal. The other restaurant I think could get very noisy with the number of tables and children. The food is amazing absolutely nothing to complain about and loads of choice. Our waiter meezad was lovely bringing drinks and clearing the table very quickly.

We tried the hit rock and Asian wok. Again the hot rock was lovely and worth every penny the Asian rock I wouldn't recommend for a meal we had nearly the same food in our normal restaurant the following nice and it was a lot nicer. We spent a couple if days relaxing in the room and had room service breakfast and lunch both are very good and well worth the money, especially the breakfast you get more food then you could eat all week!

We went on a couple of trips. Dhangeti island this was well worth it for a bit of shopping ( very cheap) and a tour of a local island. We also did the sunset trip the dolphins race alongside the boat. I would recommend sitting downstairs at the front if the boat for the best view. We also did the manta ray and turtle snorkelling trip and saw both as well as the normal snorkelling trip again very good.

We dived with euro divers taking a six day unlimited dive package. Diving the house reef is well worth it and they transport your tanks for you to a reef exit point. The boat dives are good but we saw more on the house reef, although did see whale sharks on the dive to the national park. Euro divers is very expensive especially as you have to add on the cost if the boat trip every dive. Everyone has to complete the check dive including mask removal and buddy breathing before they will let you dive unguided. They are also very keen on taking as many weights as possible if you. Everyone also has to dive with own computer and SMB you can hire them but be aware if this additional expense. There is an underwater camera on Chanel 3 on the room tv which is lovely to watch!

Although expensive this holiday was worth every penny and we are going back for our 40th birthdays in a couple of years!


  • Stayed: October 2012
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5  Thank van-vick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 20, 2012

We have just returned from a two stunning weeks in Vilamendhoo, the island is wonderful with lush vegatation and brilliant white sand around the edge, the house reef is spectacular with great snorkeling, turtles and eagle rays can bee seen just yards from your bedroom door.
The food in the restaurant is excellent with varied menus, I must mention the staff who are superb, service everywhere is realaxed and attentive, be prepared to give a tip at the end of your holiday they deserve it.
Anyone going to Vilamendhoo is in for a real treat, it is totaly relaxing and a real chill out resort.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank merrion-owner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 19, 2012

Not All Inclusive ... Don't get caught out 

I am still on holiday but thought to post this now so that you perhaps don't get caught out as I feel that I have done.

Not all inclusive - Drinks in the mini bar in the rooms you pay for unless it has AIP (all inclusive package) written next to it on the menu. Like coke diet coke fanta orange sprite bitter lemon tonic soda ice coffe ice tea, carlsberg and tiger beer...  all liquor and wines AND the snacks like peanuts etc, you pay extra for. At the bars there is a drinks menu and certain spirits are written in red and this you can have at the bar with no extra cost. . Note at the bars! 

Be warned re Duty free - I was about to purchase a bottle of cognac at Gatwick duty free and it was only due to speaking with a chap working there he just happened to ask where I was travelling to and he  looked in my basket and told me that I would have that taken off me at the other end as they do not allow you to bring alcohol into the country . They have conac at the resorts BUT here it is not on the all inclusive package list. So as it is my only tipple and I am on holiday, I enquired re the price of a bottle and instead of the £38 at duty free here it cost me £105 !!!! And they happily sold it to me ! 

Luggage weight - on leaving Gatwick all hold and hand luggage was correct to the weight allowance. I purchased some items at Gatwick Duty free. On arrival at Male we then had a seaplane transfer and guess what ... they weigh your luggage all over again and told me and charged me for being over the allowance 
Because of the duty free that I had purchased at Gatwick. Now don't get caught out ... I had read this somewhere and called Thomson in Newcastle and asked if this were true and someone called me back and said definitely NOT. !!! I felt really aggrieved at spending money in duty free and then being charged for spending that money at the other end. Especially as I had called and asked the question.. So I spoke with the very helpful and lovely Lou .. The holiday rep here and she has addressed it for me. 

Dress code - Now I generally do all inclusive at Riu hotels around the world and I always get dressed for dinner. Not here you are encouraged NOT to dress up for dinner. The restaurants and reception etc are all sand floors and people generally most of the time walk around with no shoes ... Yes even at dinner. So ladies save yourself that extra weight and not bother packing high heels .. You really won't be needing them. 

Money - change your money before getting here because once your here you only have the hotels rates and they charge more than the international rate. 

These are things that I feel that the branch that I booked with should have spoke with me about .. I have booked all my holidays with them for the last 5 years and am really disappointed with the lack of info that they could have shared .. Especially given how expensive this holiday was. 

Weather - I've been here since Monday 15th and it has rained every day. The temperature is very warm but this rain has put a dampner on it for me. 


Food ok. Staff ok. 
Thomson rep Lou .. Always appears to be about if you need her.

I hope some of this helps. To be honest if I had all the information in addition to what I read and looked up, I would have selected a different holiday for the cost that I paid... One where all inclusive IS all inclusive .

Room Tip: Watervilla is worth extra cost.
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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10  Thank Styled2Impress
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 19, 2012

An excellent holiday, jacuzzi water villas were very spacious and quiet, wonderful surroundings with excellent snorkling, staff were very obliging and friendly, food and drink excellent, would definately go back.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank mike b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 15, 2012

We spent 2 enjoyable weeks at this resort (minus 2 days –more on that later).
Seaplane transfer:
Our transfer to the seaplane terminal was quick & efficient. Please be aware that they do charge for excess baggage over 20kg hold & 5 kg hand, so if you have travelled with an airline which allows more than this, then be prepared to cough up. The charge isn’t much (not too sure of correct price as we were ok) & is for the return journey. We were then taken to the resort’s private lounge where we had an hour’s wait for our transfer to the island. The lounge has aircon, toilets (with a shower), a small library, soft seats & complimentary soft drinks so not a hardship. We were given a registration form to fill in to save time at the resort. This form has a disclaimer (basically asking you to give away any rights you have if things go wrong) on the back that they wish you to also sign but it is not compulsory. We didn’t sign it & were not pressurised to do so. The journey was about 25 mins & definitely a lovely, though noisy experience! Earplugs are supplied.
After landing, we were transferred from the plane to the resort by dhoni- a 2 minute ride. We were escorted to reception where Lou, the Thomson rep, greeted us & then we were taken to our room by a member of Admin. They have done away with wristbands for AI guests, but you have to sign for everything, even the AI stuff.
Rooms:
We had e-mailed the resort 2 weeks before flying & requested a quiet room on the north side of the island, which we were given. We were a little disappointed that our room was a semi-detached, (no 177) but it wasn’t a problem. The room was fairly central to the island & it was only a short walk to everywhere. I have to admit that we weren’t great fans of the outside bathroom though it did look lovely. We both ended up with quite a few mozzie bites & put it down to going the loo in the night. Toiletries are provided, shampoo, conditioner, shower gel & soap of fairly good quality, so no need to take your own. There is also a can of mozzie spray in the bathroom, which is replenished on request. Towels weren’t very soft. We did have to chase our room boy to leave some on one occasion. Our room was a good size, with a comfortable four poster bed, day bed, plenty of storage space, umbrella (for those tropical showers), full length mirror, tea & coffee making facilities, a mini bar & flat screen tv with dvd player. The mini bar had soft drinks & beer free to those on AI- the rest of the contents were chargeable. Each bungalow has a wooden veranda with comfy plastic rattan chairs & coffee table. There is also a large pot filled with water & a ladle to rinse sand off your feet.
Our bags arrived soon after, so we unpacked & went straight in for a snorkel.
Reef:
The reef is very healthy with a wide variety of life. We saw octopi, turtles, a couple of largish sharks & rays plus all the usual suspects. The clarity wasn’t too good the first week as there had been bad weather before we arrived but it did improve the second week. The lagoon is very shallow & sometimes difficult to swim in because of this- especially at low tide. We did see a few snorkelers get into bother trying to swim back in at low tide because they didn’t use the designated exits. The reef is much closer on the north side of the island & you are able to snorkel the whole length of it whereas on the south side, you have to get out between the jetties then get back in again. The currents run from the water bungalows to the Asian Wok on both sides of the island. They could be a little strong for inexperienced snorkelers so it is adviseable to swim with them not against, unless you are a good swimmer. There are some very large Titan Trigger Fish, but as long as you don’t go near them whilst they are feeding (they will be head down chomping on something) or nesting (patrolling a small sandy area) then they will ignore you. In fact, one day we were looking for a stonefish which had been in the same place for 3 days but we couldn’t find it. When we looked up we were practically face-to-face with a Titan! It ignored us but we swam away very fast!
Restaurants:
The resort has 2 buffet restaurants, which bungalow you are in determines which one you eat in. They both serve the same food. Ours was the Funama. You are allocated a table for 2, which is yours for the duration, though you can eat outside at another table on occasions- just tell your waiter & he will arrange it for you. Our table was practically outside anyway so we didn’t bother the first week. Our waiter was Latheef, who looked after us very well. The food was good, with plenty of choice at each mealtime, though occasionally meat in sauces were a little too salty for our taste. There was even pork served on several occasions. Real bacon & sometimes pork sausages were served at breakfast & the pastries were lovely. It was a real struggle not to overindulge. I would have liked more variety in the fruit offered as dessert.
Vegetarians might struggle a bit for choice but I’m sure that a word with the catering staff would result in something cooked specially. The vegetable curries were especially yummy.
The only gripe we had with the dining room was the harsh sand on the floor, which was also in the bars & the reception area. We did try to go barefoot but after 2 days of walking on coral bits & shell shards, our feet felt permanently on fire & we had to resort to wearing flipflops.
The Asian Wok, (chargeable restaurant) served drinks from 3pm until 11pm. It was lovely to sit here as the sun went down, as there was usually a slight breeze & you can watch the baby sharks swimming by. We did go here for a meal towards the end of our holiday. I was disappointed with my main course but I think I just chose the wrong thing. I ordered the Indonesian Bani Goreng which came with mussels, which were not listed on the menu, & I hate mussels. Luckily, my OH likes them so we swapped meals.
Bars:
The main bar area was quite large & could get very noisy when the evening entertainment was on. It was also very hot & humid in there even though all the French doors were open. It is open 24 hours though we never made it past 10 pm most nights. Freshly made popcorn is served with evening drinks. The drinks are not branded ones but were ok, There was a cocktail & mocktail of the day included in the AI. My OH had a slight complaint that some of the soft drinks were often flat as they were served out of large bottles which lost fizz very quickly. He hates flat coke in his rum & coke! It might make sense to install soft drink guns as this would do away with all those horrible plastic bottles that end up floating in the sea. Say hello to Kamal, Robin & Francis who worked very hard to keep us all hydrated! Any tips handed to one of the bar waiters are kept by them whereas any tips handed to the bar staff go into a communal box.
We only drank in the Sunset bar a couple of times, but it seemed a more relaxed bar.
The bar at the Boashi pool is open 10 am to 8pm & Jhamshad behind the bar is a very attentive young man who remembers what everyone is drinking.
Facilities:
There are 2 swimming pools on the island. An infinity adults only pool, which didn’t have enough shade but did have lovely views, & the larger Boashi pool which had loads of shade. We preferred the latter, which also had a children’s pool & playground. There were a few children there but they were not a problem. The island has a breeding pair of herons & the youngsters hung around the pool- highly entertaining when they went for a swim!
There are also a very, very small putting green, a volley ball court, a football pitch, tennis courts, a well equipped gym, an airconditioned games room & library. The staff play the guests at football once a week- staff usually win!
There is a small shop with quite a good chice of toiletries etc. There is also a tailor in the shop. We didn’t visit the spa so cannot comment on it but it looked lovely.

A highlight of our holiday came in the second week when we were given the chance to go to Thudufushi for free for 2 nights, as Vilamendhoo was overbooked for 2 nights. I have done a separate review for that resort. The transfer was a 40 minute speedboat ride which was lovely. If you get the chance to do this when there, take it.
We returned to Vilamendhoo on the 3rd day & were put into a different room but still on the north side. This time we were in no 190- a longer walk to our dining room! This room was basically the same as our first room except about 1 metre smaller, so no full length mirror. This wasn’t a problem, but we did prefer the larger room, as there now wasn’t really anywhere to store our cases. However, the beach was nicer & it was easier to get into the sea in front of this second room.
Our lovely dining table had to be given away to someone else, but Latheef had saved us one close to our original so we were happy & we ate outside at night a couple of times.
On arrival back at Vilamendhoo we were given a voucher for a free Whale Shark trip. We hadn’t planned on doing this but decided to go to enjoy the boat ride. Previous trips hadn’t been very successful with only one sighting in 2 weeks but we ended up seeing & swimming with 2 Whale Sharks. We also saw dolphins on the return trip. It was a brilliant day! However, one idiot did swim down & grab the tail of one of the sharks, then proceeded to stroke it’s back also, despite everyone being told not to touch if we did see one. He was reported to Vilamendhoo’s management & they fined him over $500. I’m glad that they are taking this sort of thing seriously. They have cut back on the number of Whale Shark trips each week & also restrict the numbers of people allowed on each trip.
There were a number of British guests who had been to Club Faru previously & thought the atmosphere here was not quite as friendly. We have to agree & think that the resort was more suited to honeymooners & couples wanting to be alone. Maybe this will change now that Vilamendhoo has become a Thomson/First Choice UK exclusive. However, here’s hoping the price stays affordable now there is no competition, as we would like to return.
A small note on Male airport- you can no longer take liquids into the departure lounge. They have re-sited the security checks from after the lounge to before it. Also the shop where you could buy a large bottle of water to take onto your plane has gone. You can buy small bottles at a kiosk to the right of the dutyfree shop. At a dollar each, they still work out much cheaper than what Thomson Airlines charge for water.

Room Tip: Rooms on north side quieter with better views
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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15  Thank SKIonhols
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: Vilamendhoo Island, 20187
Phone Number:
Location: Maldives > Alifu Atoll > Southern Ari Atoll > Vilamendhoo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Vilamendhoo
Price Range: $343 - $1,420 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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 Velana 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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