We came for a few days and the moment we got there we understood we have to stay more, so we extended our stay. Staff is absolutly amazing and caring. There's so mych to do and so many options of food!More
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We came for a few days and the moment we got there we understood we have to stay more, so we extended our stay. Staff is absolutly amazing and caring. There's so mych to do and so many options of food!MoreShow less
You are wonderful for writing the review and we were so happy you decided to stay on (I wish we could have kept you longer!)
Our mission at JA Manafaru is to offer you a chance to "breathe", a retreat from the everyday challenges of life and to interact with a team that look at life holistically and whom want to share part of their culture and outlook on life. We hope that our little island and your experiences in it will remain in your heart for a long time and of course you are welcome to come back anytime you are in need of some magical JA Manafaru.
with gratitude and thanks,
Karen and the entire JA Manafaru family
We had our vacation begin of July 2019 for 12 nights in a watervilla.
The villa was very clean upon our arrival and also during the whole stay, for which our greatest thanks to Santo.
The arrival was a warm welcoming by the staff and we met our butler Sunny. She did her very best to make our stay unforgettable. She took us immediately to the villa with the buggy showing around the major places on the island.
The resort has serveral restaurants with all good food and perfect service.
Only we could not use the buffet restaurant since it was under renovation works.
Als we had one night a dinner in the Cellar. It is very fine cuisine and a big choice of the best wines. The wines are not in the all inclusive package.
The other restaurants are also very nice, The Ocean Grill, Andiamo and White Orchid. The quality of food was perfect and so was the service in every place.
Thanks to all staff for their nice service.
The island has a nice house reef not too far from the watervilla and there is a lot of fish to spot, once we saw also a turtle during snorkeling. However the lagoon goes rather fast over into deeper water what can be a problem to not so good swimmers.
During our stay most of the time we had also a rather strong current near the villa and rather big waves for being in the Maldives. Maybe this is because we are at the far north of the archipel.
The beaches are clean en this sand is one of the finest we already experienced.
It really feels like powder.
The weather was very nice during our stay, only one night we had a big storm and about 2 days some clouds, but the rest of the time was very nice weather with a lot of sun. The island has a big vegetation (original & wild), with lots of big banyan trees.
The size of the island is to me perfect. Not too big and not too small.
The distance from the airport is about 1h20min from Male. With clear weather you have a wonderful flight over the archipel with spectacular views.
We really enjoyed our stay and hope to come back some day.
Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience at JA Manafaru!
You are right the island is a perfect size 800 meters by 600 meters, easy to get around but big enough to get lost (deliberately!). We always encourage our guests to get on their bikes and explore as we have guests who leave the island still not having found everything!
We actually love the fact we are the most northerly resort in the Maldives, you are true explorers coming to the relatively untouched and unspoiled part of the archipelago... just as Maldives was 40 years ago. The seaplane journey to the resort is quintessentially Maldives and again, long enough to get some amazing photography and feel like you are a true castaway!
The north of Maldives seems to be the home of the turtles and dolphins and it's unusual not to see them even from our jetties and overwater villas, you just need to keep your eyes on the sea from time to time.
Thank you for the sincere comments about the team, they love looking after all our guests and truly want you to enjoy every part of your experience. They are a little shy to begin with, but have a great sense of humor and love what they do.
We would love to see you again on the island and please reach out should we be able to help personally.
with kind regards and thanks
Karen and the JA Manafaru family
It was an impulsive decision on part to visit the Maldives at this time of the year. It was our first time visiting the Maldives, I must say we were not disappointed. We chose to stay in a water villa with full board for 7 nights.
I must give credit here to the travel agent for recommending Manafaru from his own experience of visiting this magical island few times in the past. We reached Male from London after a long plane journey, upon arrival we were greeted by Manafaru staff and taken to the Manafaru Longue while we waited for the seaplane to be ready. The lounge is equipped with washroom and shower facility as well as drinks and snacks, which is a nice touch. We chose to freshen up so we will have the opportunity to have few sunset drinks once we reached the island.
At the resort we were greeted by the welcoming party and taken to the reception, our experience host Hassan Irshadu showed us around and checked us into our over water villa. Must say they were kind enough to upgrade our room to a sunset over water villa, which was situated right at the end, which allowed us to have extra privacy during our stay. The villa is decorated with modern furnishing and all the amenities usually comes with this type of resort. I really loved the menu they have for different pillows you can choose from to get good nights sleep. I thought this was a particular nice touch. The mini bar gets stocked up daily with a turn over in the evening; you also have the option to order drinks and food in your villa, ideal for honeymooners who wants to lock themselves in. Hassan spent some time with us explaining all the facilities available to guests and gave us some useful tips for excursions and experiences to try out during our stay.
We tried the bikes on the first day to explore the island after that decided to give it a miss as I did not want to over exert myself, the resort has few buggies for guest use which makes moving from A to B quite easy. Breakfast is served on a buffet, there is a wide variety of items to choose from though the management could look into adding more continental items on the menu. Usually for lunch 2 outlets were open and it’s a la carte. The menu’s were varied and we were spoiled for choice. The Infinity Bar and Pool offers great view of the Indian Ocean for sunsets, Satish and Mantey were always on hand to keep the flow of cocktails and drinks. We tried all the outlets for lunch and dinner, however we left the Cellar to the last. It is a must try especially for wines lovers, Sampath the sommelier has an extensive knowledge of wine and he is on hand to match your wine with the food on offer. The lamb rack was divine with the New Zealand Pinot Noir. It is a dining experience unlike any I have experienced at Manafaru or else where. The Cellar is situated 2 feet below sea level to maintain a constant temperature at all times. I strongly recommend booking a table once you get there since it can only accommodate 22 people at a time so its very private and intimate.
For those who are looking for things to do, there are a lot of water sports activities and excursions on offer, your host will provide you with all the details. Take the 2-hour snorkeling excursion by boat, Imka the marine biologist and her team are so accommodating even for the novices who have never been snorkeling before. The resort offers depending on weather outdoor cinema for all guests in the evening check availability with your host.
For us what impressed us most was the team at Manafaru. As I was explaining to Karen you are only as good as your team who acts as your ambassador and represents what Manafaru stands for. All the staff there were so friendly, attentive and intuitive towards their guests needs this was simply amazing. Coming from hospitality background myself I was just blown away by it all. So many people stood out and provided excellent service and care throughout. Special thanks to Ashraf and Yeasin who looked after us during all meal times. Pooja and Nihal were always on hand to provide detailed description of the menu and explaining the daily specials. It was also a unique opportunity for me to try out the Maldivian chili; it’s HOT take my word for it.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank the entire team at Manafaru especially behind the scene who made this holiday very special for us. We hope to return in the near future and will be recommending you guys to all our friends and family.
I know the team were honoured to look after you and make your special time away even more special. Our team are truly amazing and going the extra mile to ensure our guests enjoy these special moments is what they do best. I have started referring to the island as "Magical Manafaru" as every day there is something new and exciting to experience and all of this is possible due to the efforts of the collective as you mentioned - in particular the people behind the scenes.
We hope you will smile each time you think of your time on the island and it will have given you energy to cope with the outside world. We love what we do and are eternally grateful to you for buying into our style of hospitality...we look forward to welcoming you "home" one day.
with kindness and gratitude
Karen and the JA Manafaru family
This island/resort is absolutely perfect! I spend months researching what island to stay at for our 10 year wedding anniversary and all the research paid off.
As soon as we came through arrivals a representative met us, knowing instantly who we were. This still puzzles me how they knew exactly who we were without me giving any details. He took us straight to the check in for seaplane and we were chauffeured to the private seaplane lounge within 5 minutes of coming through.
The length of the seaplane journey (approx 80 mins) Prior to getting there I thought would be a downside but I was completely wrong. This was an amazing experience flying over all the atolls and islands until you eventually reach our own piece of paradise.
We got off the seaplane to a fantastically warm welcome complete with Maldivian drums and cool face towels.
The check in process was faultless, once again our experience host Malika knew who we were without any information! We were given a tour of the island via golf buggy before being taken to our amazing water villa!
The villa was absolutely fantastic and completely blew me away! Well decorated, spacious and beautiful. I was worried we would be too close to the villa next door before arriving but this was not an issue. We had a fantastic cleaner moosa h who came twice a day to clean the room and left everything spotless and lovely.
My husband was sick whilst we were there (not from anything related to the island) and the care we received was fantastic. We were seen by the island dr and nurse who looked after us. All the island staff asked after my husband and malika (our fabulous experience host) went above the call of duty by making sure he had fresh soup and warm milk and honey bought to the room. I can not explain how much these little touches make.
The food in all the restaurants was delicious and the staff are so friendly. You really feel like you are part of an island family. Everybody was so welcoming and caring.
We were on the all inclusive package and the alcohol included was very good with a wide range of options and not just your basic spirits. Most food was included, usual exclusions of lobster but that was about it.
I really can not fault this island and would whole heartedly recommend it to anyone. I was really sad to leave and still have the post holiday blues.
Karen you are so lucky to have such a fantastic team, thank you from the bottom of our hearts. You and your island are amazing.
thank you so much and believe me I feel the same about the team! I have been lucky to look after many different "island families" in Indian Ocean and Asia, but the warmth and genuine wish to look after our guests is also so refreshing to me also, everyone on island is genuinely happy to be here!
As you know many of our team members come from the surrounding islands in the atoll and JA Manafaru is the only resort property, so there is a sense of pride and love for the property and our team are very protective of it, as we are of them.
I am so pleased that the meal plan you chose was the right one for you, we always suggest to guests to think about what is important to them and some guests like the freedom to pick and choose and others like to know that nearly everything is included. We are always happy to help with these questions and queries.
The seaplane - this is my most favourite experience in Maldives and at JA Manafaru you have the experience of being the most northerly resort in Maldives as well as being the only resort the seaplane company flies to for this length of time.
We are all very sorry we can not help with those post holiday blues... BUT, you know we are only a flight or two away.
with kindness and gratitude
Karen and the JA Manafaru family
This is the second time visiting JA Manafaru (once in 2015 and now, in 2019). Words cannot describe this getaway.
We decided to go back for our BabyMoon and it was not only the best decision ever, but also the best trip we have ever taken (coming from 2 globe trotters)
Where to start? JA Manafaru stands out due to it's impeccable service. The staff is genuinely warm, caring and friendly. They tailor to every travellers needs from the moment you book your trip, till the moment you depart.
Every guest has an experience host who tends to your needs, assists you in organising all your events and reservations. You are also picked up in a buggy to get around the resort. Our host was Ziraar. He is incredibly kind and takes notes of everything you need through out your stay. He (and every one else) goes out of their way to make you comfortable.
Each villa is designed with a great eye for detail and well equipped. The cleanliness is noteworthy and our housekeeper was Muneez. Our bungalow was cleaned twice a day and there were alway nice and funny surprises.
The resort has multiple restaurants with a variety of cuisines which go beyond any resort we have visited. Each dish is creatively put together and the chef and waiters remember your little preferences during each meal. The bars also create lovely and personal cocktails and ensure that you are deeply satisfied (thank you Satish)
There are different locations and areas on the resort keeping you occupied during your stay, but there is a general calm vibe through out. There are bikes and buggies to get you around. Multiple pools and bars, a diving center, lounges, excursions, chill zones and much more.
The resort is also very child friendly. I will definitely be returning with our little one. I have to commend Karen and Melania (General manager and Executive Manager) for their excellent welcome and kindness. Waiter Yassin, so funny but very attentive to detail and like many others, made us feel right at home. Unfortunately there are some people whose names I cannot remember :-( but the head of F&B and his assistant, the chef, the lovely waitress from Nepal, thank you so much.
We saw a lot of sea life and this was an excellent baby moon. It's been 3 days since we got home and I am still going through the blues.... wanting to return :-( We will try to come back end of 2020 depending on our little one's character :-D otherwise 2021.
There is probably much more I could say, but I will stop now and urge you to book your trip. I recommend the all inclusive packages as they are well worth it.
thank you, thank you, thank you.
you are so kind to write the review and for taking the time to think about what may be important for potential guests to read.
You have said everything so beautifully it only remains for me to say that we hope to welcome the three of you back sooner rather than later and all of our best wishes from now until then.
with gratitude and our best wishes for the arrival!
Karen and all of the JA Manafaru family
We recently returned from an eight night stay at JA Manafaru. We've been fortunate to have had many wonderful vacations but we both agree that this trip was the best. The service and food was exceptional. We stayed in an over water bungalow and it was beautiful. Mahir took care of our room and he did so may little things to make it special. We still smile when we look at pictures of the little menagerie he created. Yasim was our waiter the first night. After that he seemed to show up everywhere we ate. We had a special private beach dinner booked for a birthday celebration and he prepped the beach, cooked the unbelievable meal, and served it as well. He did little things everyday to make us smile. Our "Experienced Host" was Sunny. She was truly amazing. She was there to greet us when we got off the plane and she was always available to plan our activities, make our dinner reservations, and answer any questions we had. A truly exceptional experience . We are already planning our next trip.
One of our quotes is "some experiences leave you richer" and it seems like this one truly has! We are humbled to be part of your life's story and the team and I are very grateful that you took time to write this review.
Blue skies, white sand and coconuts do wonders for the soul, but what is really important is people, and I can truly say that the team at JA Manafaru are one of the most genuine teams I have had the pleasure to work with. I am delighted the menagerie created made you smile (our team like to have fun) and that they all, even the unsung heroes behind the scenes made such a difference to your vacation.
Thank you for being kind to our team and we look forward to welcoming you "HOME" soon.
Karen, on behalf of the JA Manafaru island family