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“Great resort with a good all-inclusive package” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

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Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Great resort with a good all-inclusive package”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 9, 2013

My husband and I recently arrived back from Centara after having spent 10 days of our Honeymoon there. We arrived at the resort by seaplane which was a fantastic experience. From the moment we arrived at the resort, the first thing that struck us was how beautiful the resort was as well as the warm and friendly welcome we received from staff on our arrival. Although our room was not ready when we first arrived, a member of staff directed us to a shower and changing room we could use in the meantime and we ended up going for lunch and a brief wander round the island while waiting to gain access to our accommodation. We chose to stay in one of the beach villas and we were very happy with our allocated villa and were provided with fresh fruit and a bottle of fizz to celebrate our arrival and honeymoon which was a nice touch. A particular tip when booking the beach villas is to request one of the villas numbered 99-112 as these had the best stretch of beach on the island, in our opinion, and had unobstructed views of the ocean and were in a great location for snorkelling and access to the Dive Centre, the Reef and Lotus restaurants as well as the Coral Bar. The villa was perfectly adequate for our needs and had a lovely spacious bathroom downstairs with an outdoor shower/bath as well as a small upstairs toilet next to the bedroom area. Lovely big bed that we found very comfortable along with a flatscreen TV directly opposite as well as an additional TV downstairs in the sitting area. Fresh bottles of water were provided every day and our villa was well-cleaned & tidied every day. We booked our stay last year with the old all-inclusive package and were made aware by Virgin Holidays whom we booked with that the resort was changing it's all-inclusive package to 'Ultimate AI'. We were initially concerned about what this would mean for us during our stay as we had looked into the cost of upgrading and found this to be a bit too costly and weren't sure if it was worth doing or not. The Ulitmate AI upgrade included a 30 minute complementary massage at the spa every day along with included min-bar and some added excursions. We decided to stick with the original package and to be honest, I don't feel that we missed out on anything as we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves anyway. One of the highlights of this resort is the quality of the food - the Thai restaurant - Lotus - offers a daily set lunch and dinner menu that are part of their all-inclusive package and the food there was excellent and as it changed daily, there was plenty of variety and you wouldn't get bored with the choices. The main buffet restaurant - Reef - was also excellent providing a great variety of breakfast options including champagne every morning as well as a selection of juices, teas and coffees. The restaurant offered a different food theme every night including Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Maldivian, Italian & Greek, French and South-East Asian. There was so much choice, that even the fussiest of eaters would be able to find something they liked and from observing other guests, the staff were also able to accommodate specific dietary requirements/requests as well. We didn't bother eating at the Italian restaurant on the resort as we looked at the menu and felt that the other 2 restaurants offered more interesting choices.

Another highlight of the resort was the snorkelling and the house reef had a great variety of fish to observe and photograph. One of the best locations for snorkelling was the reef just to the left of the dive centre which happened to be just off the beach in front of the row of villas we were staying in so very convenient for us.

Of the excursions on offer at the resort, we chose to do the Sunset Cruise which was lovely and we decided to splash out and do the Robinson Crusoe desert island experience where you get dropped off on a small island along with a couple of cool boxes containing plenty of soft drinks, water, beer and a bottle of wine along with enough food to feed at least 4 people. a couple of loungers and an umbrella on the beach are provided and you are left to yourselves for approximately 6 hours. It was absolute bliss and the food provided was excellent.

Centara is a family friendly resort and there were plenty of young children there, but even as honeymooners this didn't really bother us as they all seemed well behaved and it certainly didn't affect the enjoyment of our stay. For those who would prefer a quiet couples-only resort, this probably wouldn't be the right choice for you.

One thing that really stood out for us was the friendliness and attentiveness of the staff at Centara. We couldn't fault them and they helped to make our stay very comfortable and enjoyable. Special mentions of thanks go to some of the staff at the Reef restaurant - Janet, Hisay and Nura as well as the hardworking chefs who manned the hotplate areas of the buffet. The staff at Lotus were also fantastic and special thanks go to Mangala, Desmond and Mousa who were very welcoming.

Overall, we loved Centara and it provided us with the rest and relaxation we were looking for as well as a truly memorable honeymoon experience and we hope that we will have the opportunity to return at some point in future.

Room Tip: When booking the beach Villas, we would recommend one of the villas numbered 99-112 which are situat...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank HappyHolidays1619
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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Cambridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
194 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 9, 2013

We visited this atoll for our 20th wedding anniversary "treat". We also had the pleasure of our daughters company ! As she is a better snorkeller than either of us, she really enjoyed the house reef - as did I. We had a family water villa which was very large and had direct access to probably the best part of the house reef. We could literally walk off our sun deck into the sea and be surrounded by the most incredible fish. I was able to swim out to the drop off and dive down 4-5 meters to see the bigger fish and the reef sharks ! Even though they are about 1.5m long they are very wary and almost impossible to get close to. Upon arrival we had a complimentary chilled bottle of champagne and a an anniversary cake waiting for us - very impressive ! The food was a particular highlight with every day being a different cuisine and all cooked fresh. My daughter is a bit fussy, but the waiting staff even went and got the chef to do her something for her that she really liked ! Nothing was too much trouble. My wife and I went to the Spa and I had the very best Thai massage I have ever had - 1.5 hours of bliss. I went on a day trip to swim with the whale sharks into a bit of a storm. After about 2 hours sailing, we arrived at the site and over the next 2 hours I swam with 3 whale sharks, the largest of which would have been 10 plus meters long and I got to be within 2 meters of it ! This is a very friendly, family orientated resort, not too big and not too busy. The staff were absolutely fantastic and made our stay very pleasant. All in all, it was a once in a lifetime experience and one which we were completely blown away by. When we win the lottery, we are coming back !

Room Tip: Highly recommend the water villas - step from the deck into the Indian Ocean - very cool !
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Nathan N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
surrey
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 6, 2013

We have stayed at some great resorts around the world but few have made us as welcome and at home as the Centara did. From the initial greeting, through the villa experience, until the time we departed we could not fault the service. This is down entirely to the quality of staff and the genuine warmth and helpfulness they bring to their work. Everything is so natural, not forced or contrived and we cannot thank them enough.

This is an all inclusive resort and in this case it is a term that lives up to the billing, with daily spa treatments included. We have stayed in a number of all inclusive resorts but none come close to this one. The food is fresh and varied each evening in the main restaurant and is supplemented by an Italian restaurant and an authentic Thai restaurant which both deliver consistent, high quality food. Wherever you eat the experience is heightened by the genuine warmth, friendliness and helpfulness of the staff who were particularly good with the children.

We stayed in a deluxe beach pool villa which more than exceeded our expectations. Trying to find a villa that will cater for two adults and two children is particularly hard these days - especially in the Maldives - but this gave us two spacious bedrooms with enough distance between us and the kids. The pool was great and of a good size and we effectively had our own piece of beach outside of the villa. The room was cleaned to a high standard as was the pool, and we had two high quality baths/showers. Wi-fi was accessible at all times and there was even a PS3 in the room for the kids.

This is child friendly resort but kids by no means dominate. Activities on offer are varied, there is a very good diving operation and they have an excellent team in Watersports where there is banana boat rides, windsurfing, canoes etc readily available, with no queues. We hired a motorboat for a private trip - not cheap but worth every penny to snorkel with turtles, whale sharks and manta rays in a five hour trip. We managed two out of the three (turtles and whale shark) and were given a memorable day by two very special members of the team, Suway and Alibaba, who did everything in their power to ensure the children saw a whale shark. A truly memorable day!

The location of the island is great with a stunning reef surrounding it. It is large enough to feel you have space and you never felt crowded and at the same time is small enough to give you a feeling of specialness and intimacy that is perhaps unique to the Maldives. My one tiny quibble is that the variety of cocktails could be greater as part of the all inclusive package but they do live up to their billing of being an island where you need no cash.

We had a taste of paradise and want more next year. The Centara is a truly special resort.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank bscandh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 31, 2013

My wife and I visited the Centara Grand Resort and Spa Maldives resort in mid March 2013 for 14 nights for our Honeymoon. We arrived to the resort by seaplane which was an excellent experience. The views from the 'VistaLine' aircraft by Maldivian Air Taxi with huge windows was breathtaking albeit extremely hot!

On arrival we were very impressed with the professional and personal service where we were greeted and informed about the terms of our all inclusive package which, as we booked over 12 months ago, was very different to everyone else's. We were immediately relieved with this as it was a point of concern before we arrived that this package was no longer available so we were worried that we might lose out on some of the perks. For those that might also know, this was called the Gold Package - more on this later. We were then taken on a quick tour of the island and to lunch (which was kept open a bit longer than normal to accommodate the time of arrival of our sea plane). After lunch we went to our room where our luggage was delivered to and WOW! The rooms are nicely decorated with a nautical theme and the colours suit the room well. We were staying in a Luxury Sunset Water Villa which meant that the sunset was viewable from our villa and balcony (we were room 56). The rooms are generally in very good condition although our door to the balcony was stiff to lock. The spiral staircase to the upper level balcony was also looking a little weathered and could use a sanding and a lick of paint. The bathroom was huge and had excellent facilities, all the plugs in the room were 13A 3-pin so your devices from the UK will work without an adapter - this seems common across the resorts in the Maldives. Also, the Wifi access in the room (and across the buildings of the resort) is an excellent service. Who would have thought that I would get better internet access in a remote island in the Maldives than I do a few miles outside of Bristol... (for the techies out there it is an undersea fibre optic network that links the islands to the main Maldives backhaul to India - so you will get a very good internet service). Snorkelling is definitely something you will want to do - it is a once in a lifetime experience having such an aquatic environment right outside your room - we invested in an underwater camera before leaving so this got plenty of use - although I believe you can rent an underwater camera from the resort otherwise.

We were very happy with the food at the resort, across all the eateries there was consistently high quality and good selection. My wife is a vegetarian (but eats Fish) and there was plenty of choice as the reef fish makes an appearance in many of the meals - which by the way is definitely some of the best fish we have ever had - almost like chicken breast in its texture and so fresh! The chefs were also very happy to substitute their beef/pork meals for tofu or fish if we requested it, although she only did this once as there was plenty of choice otherwise. As for previous reviews that had said that there was a gap of food availability - I can honestly say we never felt hungry - this may have already been resolved by the resort as between lunch and dinner there is an afternoon tea and pre-dinner canapés all at various times before dinner! Some special meals we found especially enjoyable were the Surf and Turf at the Azzuri Mare (best steak and lobster ever!), the Reef Fish and Chips, and also the Butter Paneer Masala - as well as the great desserts all prepared beautifully. We also enjoyed the Romantic Beach Dinner which included a great service from our personal butler and personal chef. Also, the staff at the two bars (Coral Bar and Aqua Bar) are all very friendly and make excellent drinks. My personal favourite was in fact a non-alcoholic cocktail called the 'Mango Energizer' which included a coconut milk blend which gave it a really creamy finish - and probably helped me put on a few pounds!

When we booked, we booked on the 'Gold All Inclusive' package, which as well as the norm, included the full access to the Mini-bar, a 60 minute Spa treatment per person, per day, Wifi internet access and non-motorised water sports. Now that the terms of the resort have changed, all of the above is included except the spa treatment which is 30 minutes per person, per day. As the booking staff at the spa were not familiar with this package, it took some convincing from our customer service representative to get them to book us correctly. On the subject of the Spa, we were very impressed with the professionalism and quality of the Thai therapists that carried out excellent treatments for us. My personal favourite was the Royal Thai massage which consisted of a small Thai lady stretching my body into various contorted positions with plenty of cracks which was very enjoyable! There was some inconsistency with the treatments however, one therapist in particular that neither me or my partner had a very good massage from.

All the staff at the resort are very friendly, and will all happily greet you as you pass. They go out of their way to make you comfortable and to ensure everything is perfect for your stay (including raking the beaches and picking up any leaves that should have fallen - just so everything looks like a perfect island scene). While we were there we noticed that they were refurbishing some of the thatched roofs of the buildings, presumably due to some of the reviews here stating that they looked old, so in a few weeks things will look even better. We would like to especially thank a few members of staff that made our stay extra special;

Doi, our customer services representative, who sorted out everything for our Gold all inclusive package and made sure that we had everything we needed - we felt very comfortable knowing that if we had any problems we could go to her and be confident that it would be resolved.

Elmer, the fitness centre and excursions manager, who was very friendly to us and would have a chat with us every day, and we had some good workout sessions - especially the one that ended with me vomiting after a good personal boot camp session!

Kakid, our frequent waiter for the two weeks, who gave us a great and attentive service as well as having good chats about all things local and Maldivian.

In summary it was an excellent 14 nights and we can't wait to go back! It was our first time visiting the Maldives (and Asia for that matter) and nowhere we have been compares to the beauty of the Maldives and the level of service we received. Mid March seems to be a great time to go, we had consistently 30-32 degree temperatures, and over the 2 weeks there was only about 2 hours of rain.

Room Tip: Room 56 (and those nearby) will give a great view of the sunset.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank JGrive
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
45 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 30, 2013 via mobile

We have been here twice with our four young children and it is as far as I'm aware he only Island paradise where you don't have to feel bad about bringing your kids.

We take a luxury pool beach villa with island club extra and we all love it. It really is all-inclusive including spa treatments, nice dining, and alcohol. Our favourites to eat in the evening are the island club and Italian restaurant.

Only gotcha is $15/hour/kid for babysitting but they offered us $15/hour for all four if asleep. In the end we kept them all on UK time and up for dinner with us

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank tomweiss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lpswich suffolk
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 29, 2013

Well we're do we start my wife celebrated her birthday here and we also renewed our wedding vows at the resort ,we stayed in a beach villa 103 and it was certainly as we had been told paradise the beach was soft white sand,the sea was like a swimming pool crystal clear a bit like swimming in an aquarium, The staff are so friendly and will do all they possibly can to make your stay the best my wife and I could NOT fault the service we got the rooms were cleaned to a very good standard and we were all inclusive but the mini bar was chargeable unless you were ultra inclusive or club members but fresh water was provided Free .
We had most of our meals in the reef bar were they cater for all ages some of the meals are mild spiced and have a themed night as in they have foods from all over the world each night so food is different but they will supply meals if there's nothing you like and if you take children and they want chips that's not an issue they can have them without fuss my wife and I made very good friends with the staff at the resort, NURA ,JANET, AMIR They made our stay most pleasurable also special thanks to the staff involved in the wedding planning it was made so special for us both most memorable,Thanks to SINTA .
the spa treatments we had were fantastic facility's at the resort are very good indeed we are already making plan's for our next visit back to the Centara grand resort the snorkelling here is the best in the area as they have a house reef were others come from other resorts to dive, Fantastic place .***** you deserve it thanks

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank risha_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Copenhagen, Denmark
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 20, 2013

Best vacation ever, Island Club is in my opinion underrated here at Tripadvisor, at was amazing
the best 5 course dinner u can imagine, I already miss the waiters at Island Club, they were fantastic,freindly people that would do anything to make your holliday perfect.

The Island Cub is situated at he best spot on the island, the view and the beach, the palm trees,
u have got to see it to believe it. I will not share any pictures because all of them are personal images.

Big and very charming beach villas, the outdoor batthub was the best, and i have seen a few. I have been to the Maldives before at other resorts.

Sending my regards an love to the staff, miss you all, if you have any problems dont hesitate to contact Doi a guest relation manager, she is one out of a million, thank you Doi for your service.
Hope to meet you again.

I got the best massage at the spa i have ever had, my wife and I had complimentary half hour or 1 hour massage massage every day.

I have tried the all inclusive concept before, and i had promised myself never again, because its
always been disapointing.

I was told that this was different, and it was, it was beyond belief, fresh juice,watermelon, papaya, you name it, the wine selection wouuwww. it was just so good, i want go back ASAP.

Room Tip: go for the beach villas, and Island Club.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank jan a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

Property: Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives
Address:
Location: Maldives > Alifu Atoll > Southern Ari Atoll > Centara Grand Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Centara Grand Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives 5*
Number of rooms: 112
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives: Set amongst the perfect islands and blue ocean of South Ari Atoll (Alifu Atoll) in the republic of Maldives, Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives delivers a unique 5 star resort experience and offers the ultimate in barefoot luxury along with a range of exciting activities that will appeal both to couples and families.Featuring 112 suites & villas, the resort offers diving enthusiasts outstanding diving opportunities including an excellent house reef complete with a dedicated sunken ship wreck and is within easy reach of the top dive spots in the Maldives. The resort offers all guests a premium all-inclusive vacation experience, along with a perfect white sand beach and the crystal clear water of the Indian Ocean.Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives offers more than simply daytime sun, sea, and sand. The resort features a variety of dining options, pools, recreation activities, Sports and Fitness facilities, bars and lounges with nightly entertainment, SPA Cenvaree, and a Kids Club. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Centara Grand Island Resort And Spa
Centara Grand Island Hotel Centara Grand Island
Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives

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