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“Pretty much perfect”
Review of Soneva Fushi

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Soneva Fushi
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Kunfunadhoo
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 1, 2013

So everyone else has said it but...

The service here is second to none. Your Mr or Ms Friday will look after you well but without being obtrusive. Everyone has a smile. We were upgraded when we arrived and again halfway through our stay - not because we complained about anything but I guess just because...

The food is to die for - huge choice, and as a vegetarian it's not often that I can say that and really mean it, but I could have stayed for a month and not eaten the same thing twice. The wine is very expensive but they have this great thing where you can order a bottle one night and if you don't finish it, it will find its way to you whichever restaurant you eat in the following night, and the night after.

Our tips:
- really, don't bother with shoes or flip flops - you will be the only person wearing anything on your feet
- really, don't bother with swanky clothes - its mostly dark at dinner and nobody cares what you look like
- go to the observatory - on a clear night you will get a fantastic view, and have a really interesting conversation
- take a good mosquito spray - there are lots, despite the resort's best efforts to manage them
- learn to love your bike if you are in a villa a bit of a distance away from the main areas - there are 3 wheelers available if you aren't comfortable with 2 wheels and golf buggies if all else fails
- go snorkelling with the marine biologist - very informative
- enjoy seeing the frolicking dolphins from your own piece of beach - not guaranteed of course, but we saw them twice in a week
- watch the sunset from Bar(a)bara - beautiful

There is an inhabited island that you can see from one side of the island, but this doesn't spoil the experience at all. Besides, the Maldives belong to the Maldivians not the tourists, and we found it quite interesting watching the comings and goings to that island.

We were a little worried about whether needing to include a seaplane in the journey would be a pain, having previously stayed at an island which only needed a speedboat transfer, but they do their very best to make this part of your holiday and it really isn't a big deal.

All in all, we would definitely go back because by the end of our week there we felt refreshed, well looked after and properly well fed and watered. We also felt that the resort does a significant amount to help minimise damage to the environment and to support the local community. Beautiful. Go.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank snoopy933
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MLESAManager, General Manager at Soneva Fushi, responded to this reviewResponded April 26, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to write such a pleasant review of our resort. We are delighted to hear that you were pleased with many aspects of your stay with us and it’s great to know that you left the resort well refreshed and well looked after. My team and I are glad that you appreciate and recognize our efforts to minimize damage to the environment and to support the local community.

Thank you for little ‘tips’ and for recommending our resort to others. We hope you will return soon, and look forward to providing you with more enjoyable experiences on your next visit!

Yours sincerely,

Laurie Burr
General Manager

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Reviewed March 31, 2013

I've just came back from 2 amazing weeks spent at Six senses Laamu and Soneva Fushi and I've had one of the most amazing times of my life. I feel privileged that I've had the chance to visit these 2 properties, that I met great people and I've been well taken care of.
I've already left a review for my stay at Laamu and now with regards to Soneva Fushi I'll be really critical as I always am when I find a true gem - if I wouldn't, I'd most likely be careless.
Soneva Fushi is an amazing island with a fabulous setting (yes, let's ignore the neighbour island on the sunset side..) and with a very professional staff. The SLOW life concept (including the no shoes non-enforced policy) is unique, has been part of the foundation of the resort back in 1995 but you do need time to adjust which is fine as you'll always want to come back anyway.
Located in the Baa Atoll, Soneva Fushi has a huge impact on one's that is looking for a genuine Robinson Crusoe experience, for a unique accommodation in the middle of a luxurious vegetation - this is what I call a true island experience.
I've stayed at a Crusoe Villa on the sunrise side which had a very good house reef a few steps away from it, the housekeeping was spotless (they even tied up our clothes every single day!), our Miss Friday was effortless (Thank you so much Natsumi!!) and the icing on top of the cake for me has been Federica, from the Diving Center, with whom I had the most amazing and unforgettable moments (I could literally just go on the sea every single day with her - I already miss you Federica!).
So island, accommodation and setting wise I find it very hard to believe there's any island in the Maldives which can beat Soneva Fushi... with regards to food, service/staff, profile of the guests please don't take it to heart but here's my thoughts.. please note that none of these would prevent me from wanting so desperately to go back.

Staff/service: they've been very very good throughout my stay but for such a gem I'd perhaps wanted more - exception goes to Natsumi, Federica, Tim, Akhmeem and a few other folks.

Food: I found it wonderful but I did prefer Laamu, the flavours, the intensity of the menu, the Chilli table experience.. the best food I've ever had.

Staff: I did find the staff overall super efficient, professional and attentive but the Laamu staff was more enthusiastic, vibrant and humble (which is something that I love). I wanted to avoid comparisons but I just can't.

Profile of the guests: this is where things perhaps go out of control from the resort and you just either accept it or not - I know that the period I've stayed at this property is a popular one (Easter holidays) so I was expecting families and that's fine. However, what I was not expecting was a considerable amount of eastern european visitors who clearly don't have manners, just "money" - I've seen staff being just patronised quite often, I've never seen words like "please" and "thank you" being so often forgotten - I wonder why some staff may well need a boost of motivation... on top of that, in general, it was obvious to me that they don't value the island enough (ask the crows who have been hit a couple of times just because of their "caw caw caw"...)

In summary: If I'll go back to Soneva Fushi: yes, very soon. If I've found the experience memorable: yes, and I'll think about it every singe day. If I hesitate to recommend it whenever there's a discussion on the Maldives: never, ever.

A big kudo to the Soneva Fushi team - you all take care and see you soon.

Nuno Martins Macedo

Room Tip: Sunrise side for privacy, sunset for a wonderful sunset and snorkelling.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank nrmm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MLESAManager, General Manager at Soneva Fushi, responded to this reviewResponded April 4, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your extremely well detailed feedback about Soneva Fushi. I am delighted that so many hosts, experiences and our Slow Life concept touched you in a way that made your Maldivian Robinson Crusoe experience a unique vacation for you. We pride ourselves in going that extra yard, making our services the benchmark of five star luxuries. I noticed that you preferred the food at Six Senses Laamu and that you found their staff to be a little bit more vibrant. This is good to read as of course Six Senses Laamu was part of the Soneva Family and that their staff were all trained by us and to Soneva standards.

We thank you also for posting great pictures of our Resort and for recommending us to others.
We are happy to read that you plan to come back very soon and we look forward to your return and to the pleasure of welcoming you again.

Yours sincerely,

Laurie Burr
General Manager

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Reviewed March 25, 2013

We were welcomed by our Mr Friday -( Mujay ) on landing in the seaplane and soon transported by magic to the Sandbank where the weekly evening cocktail / bar-B-que for all the Guests was underway, how surreal was that? One moment we seemed to be in the snowy UK and the next we were on a mound of white sand barely above the level of the Indian Ocean drinking chilled wine having just arrived by seaplane!! The wonderful experience began and didn't falter all week. Everyone was so quietly attentive and friendly. The ecological concept forming the basis for the resort makes so much sense. It creates a feeling of almost subliminal luxury - you're walking or cycling barefoot everywhere on sand in friendly "jungle" type surroundings, strolling along white sandy beaches, snorkeling in turquoise waters, eating exquisitely prepared food, living in a fabulously comfortable rustic villa by the sea and being looked after by lovely professional friendly staff what more could you ask for? I don't want to advise on the best type of villa or the best location because - 1. it depends on your budget and - 2. even the view of the adjacent island with it's small communication mast is acceptable - I think. There is one small boutique type shop close to the guest relations hut which sells both ladies and men's beach and casual clothing together with gifts and jewellery, disposable underwater cameras etc. Dress code is definitely casual in the evening and given that it is a barefoot experience, my advice - leave the "cruisewear" at home and save on the packing. Thank you Anthony, Laurie, Jasper, Mujay, Didi and Akhmeen, you all helped make our holiday so memorable.

Room Tip: Just go with the flow and relax! The whole island is delightful.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank melc18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MLESAManager, General Manager at Soneva Fushi, responded to this reviewResponded April 4, 2013

Dear Guest,

It is a pleasure to know that you had an enjoyable stay at Soneva Fushi and thank you for taking the time to write such a nice review about your holiday experience with us. My Team and I greatly appreciate your compliments and we will continue seeking ways to enhance our guests’ experience.

We look forward to welcoming you for another holiday with us, hopefully soon.

Yours sincerely,

Laurie Burr
General Manager

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Reviewed March 18, 2013

I went to go and stay with my family at the Soneva Fushi Resort in Maldives with my family last year and this hotel has adapted the concept of a 'green' eco friendly hotel with wearing no shoes. Therefore, they take away your shoes which, was the only very few things I did not like because your feet have to walk on sand always it hurts because they let it be they do not do anything with the sand. Its gross walking their outside without any shoes at any time especially when it rains its just gross and icky! I would say it is more for couples because its so isolated from society and they spread the villas apart so that they have their own privacy I would say not a good hotel in the Maldives for family. That is a once in a lifetime and I will not go out of my way to go back their, it was not the best experience for me. However, the rooms were very interesting I liked them a lot and when we were their in one of our rooms a rat fell out of the air condition which, freaked me out it was just scary and gross but right after we were upgraded to a two bedroom suite because the staff felt really bad. Overall an interesting experience

Room Tip: Choose the tree house aspect room if you were to go their because it is very cool however, the windo...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank nayal b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MLESAManager, General Manager at Soneva Fushi, responded to this reviewResponded March 21, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your recently posted comments. Soneva Fushi prides itself in intelligent luxury working hand in hand with the environment, local communities and reducing our carbon foot prints in all that we do. We never skimp on service or product and it is here at Soneva Fushi where one can find Michelin Star Chefs cooking the finest cuisine with most of the ingredients grown on our island, and drinking fine wines from our underground wine cellar which has one of the biggest selections of wines in the entire country.

Walking around with no shoes is what we refer to as barefoot luxury – the feeling of the warm Indian ocean and silky soft sands under your feet is considered by many a luxury which cannot be found in another place. I’m sorry that you did not enjoy this. Of course you would have been more than welcome to wear shoes in and around our resort if you so wished.

Soneva Fushi attracts not only couples, honeymooners, seasonal travelers, repeaters, but also many families as well. We have the biggest villas in the Maldives, ranging from our 8 bedroom, 6 bedroom, 4 bedroom and 2 bedroom private residences as well as luxurious Suites and Crusoe villas. To add to our family experiences, we are also in the process of building a Children’s Den this year for our younger Soneva guests which not only will be super fun but having it run by Child Liaison Officers, Marine Biologists and Environmentalists. Children will be able to learn more about themselves, the country and the planet which is a part of our SLOWLIFE Philosophy of Learning Inspiring Fun Experiences.

We hope to welcome you back to Soneva Fushi.


Yours sincerely,


Laurie Burr
General Manager

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Reviewed March 6, 2013

We are a big fan of Soneva/Six Senses group of resorts and knowing this is the first resort within that group, we had high expectations for this property and we had a sublime stay at Fushi for 5 nights during September last year. This is a great property to unwind and enjoy smaller things. We love the philosophy of Soneva which is reflected in all parts of the resort, service and the cuisine.

We stayed at the Soneva Fushi Villa and the villa was spacious. We particularly liked the outdoor bathroom and the daybed next to the bathtub. Very nice touch. It’s those kind of smaller things and touches that takes Soneva/Six Senses to a completely different level of comfort and luxury.

We tried all the restaurants and all of them were incredible. Breakfast spread was one of the biggest I have seen at any resorts in Maldives and almost all food were fresh and had a good balance of western/Maldives/South East Asian food. We tried the BBQ at the main restaurant and will highly recommend it. Our personal favorite was Fresh in the garden restaurant, the whole atmosphere, ambience and the cuisine was a standout.

The dive school is excellent. Thomas runs an excellent school and he’s very knowledgeable about the dive spots around and took us to some of the best spots. We wanted to see Mantas and I told him that on the first day and we weren’t lucky on the first couple of dives, but he made an extra effort to find a spot which had Mantas and that was an incredible experience when you see them for the first time. Big Kudos to the whole dive school team.

I think enough has been said about the service and we felt service was impeccable and we felt we were looked after from the second we reached the seaplane terminal.

We have stayed in a few resorts in Maldives over the last 4-5 years and this easily gets into the top 3. Overall we enjoyed our stay, but we enjoyed the Soneva experience more.

Room Tip: Go for SF Villa which is much more spacious and worth the upgrade.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank global_traveller112
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MLESAManager, General Manager at Soneva Fushi, responded to this reviewResponded March 21, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your detailed review of your stay at Soneva Fushi. Feedback like yours help us reach people everywhere and we are thrilled that you enjoyed the entire Soneva experience of ‘Intelligent Luxury’ and to know that we made it into the top 3 resorts of your choice in the Maldives.

My Team and I look forward to your return and to the pleasure of welcoming you back, hopefully soon.

Yours sincerely

Laurie Burr
General Manager

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Reviewed March 3, 2013

An unbelievable experience. Words fail to describe our week's stay. Let at least try. Landing at Soneva International Airport by seaplane is a great event. From that moment onwards your life changes. You are drowned in a unique service concept. Taking of your shoes and becoming one with nature is the next. Apart from all the extreme nice people, the fantastic Michelin Star food experience we found our day at the Robinson Crusoe island one of the highlights. Go and find out yourself! Thank you Abbas and friends!
A very happy couple from the lowlands of Europe.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Thijm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MLESAManager, General Manager at Soneva Fushi, responded to this reviewResponded March 21, 2013

Dear Guest,

Your review was a pleasure to read. The Team and I would like to thank you very much for taking the time to share your holiday experiences with others.

We are so pleased that you enjoyed the whole Robinson Crusoe experience.

We look forward to your return, hopefully in the not too distant future.

Yours sincerely,

Laurie Burr
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 28, 2013

I have been to other islands of Maldives before, however this island was the most impressive one not only because of the beautiful scenery, but also the perfect service and romantic villa design. The kids loved to go snorkeling everyday to see various colorful fish and coral by only standing on the stairs and 'head in the water'. The 10 days were completely different, extraordinary experience comparing with other islands. And I do appreciate the management team's efforts to fulfil my family's requests immediately when we asked to change the villa. Special thanks to Mr. Xain, the Senior Mr. Friday who provided wonderful, attentive service for my family.

Room Tip: A villa that is close to barabara bar ( the snorceling area)
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Laura S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MLESAManager, General Manager at Soneva Fushi, responded to this reviewResponded March 9, 2013

Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your positive comments. It is great to know that you were impressed with our island, the beautiful scenery, the romantic villa design, and as you mentioned ‘the perfect service’.

We are delighted that you recognize and appreciate our efforts to ensure that each and every one of our guests leave with fond memories. Your compliments have been shared with my team - Xain, your Mr. Friday, has been commended for being a part of your great holiday experience by providing wonderful and attentive service to your family.

Should your future travels bring you back to the Maldives, it would be our pleasure to have you stay with us again.

Yours sincerely,

Laurie Burr
General Manager

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Additional Information about Soneva Fushi

Address: Baa Atoll, 2233 (Formerly Soneva Fushi Resort)
Phone Number:
Location: Maldives > Baa Atoll > Kunfunadhoo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Kunfunadhoo
Price Range: $1,389 - $3,939 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Soneva Fushi 5*
Number of rooms: 57
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
When Eva and Sonu Shivdasani built Soneva Fushi as well as their home on the deserted island of Kunfunadhoo in the Maldives in 1995 they had no idea that their intensely personal vision of a locally crafted villa and environmentally responsible lifestyle would form the basis of a successful collection of world-class hotels, resorts and spas. But that's exactly what happened. Soneva Fushi was the first 'castaway' resort in the Maldives, pioneering a trend for back-to-nature luxury holidays. It established a blueprint for a highly acclaimed international business, followed by spectacular Soneva Kiri on the unspoilt Thai island of Koh Kood in 2009. The success of the Soneva brand also paved the way for Six Senses Resorts and Spas with award-winning properties in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. Under Eva's and Sonu's direction the Six Senses brand gained a global following before being sold in 2012. Today the Sonevas have many imitators, but no equals. Each Soneva - and a yachting experience, Soneva in Aqua - impresses on a wide range of levels. Breathtaking 'remote but accessible' natural locations, effortlessly chic accommodation, incredible food, truly memorable activities, an inspiring ethos of sustainability and service that is uncannily intuitive. The resort that set the tone and the standards for every subsequent resort. A jewel of an island - large by Maldives standards - with perfect beaches, a vibrant reef encircling the island, a colony of nesting turtles and its very own world class observatory. Located in the Baa Atoll, Maldives' only UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve, Soneva Fushi is blessed with extensive coral reefs and significant biodiversity including large concentrations of whale sharks, manta rays and marine turtles. The resort is perfect for romantic couple getaways, or family holidays as it provides unique experiences and activities for all, from diving and snorkelling with the marine biologist, to sandbank dinners and a children's den (playground). ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Soneva Fushi By Six Senses Hotel Kunfunadhoo
Soneva Fushi By 6 Senses
Soneva Fushi Resort
Soneva Fushi Hotel
Soneva Fushi Maldives/Kunfunadhoo

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