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VOI Maayafushi Resort
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Reviewed June 29, 2013

We found the resort to be extremely clean and well organised and the entertainment team were friendly, but not overpowering, but if you don't speak Italian you would miss out somewhat. Although it is heavily influenced by the Italians, the food, (not a huge variety) was always of a very high standard. we would certainly go back again.

  • Stayed: June 2013
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1  Thank angItaly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 26, 2013

I don't even know where to start...

We booked Maayafushi for our honeymoon, now we need another trip away to really say we've had a honeymoon.

Arrival: We arrived to the island by a sea plane and were greeted by a member of the animation team! Let's remember, this is a 4 star hotel... We were taken to the reception area and offered some drinks. After a 16 hour journey we were keen to get to our room as quickly as possible but instead we were offered to sit outside in the sun in 40C in our clothes from the plane and wait for a check in... We insisted on being taken to the room as soon as possible which the receptionist and the animation team were not very pleased about.

Accommodation: And so we finally make it to our room... We booked a superior double room and what we got is a room in the middle of the island in this 2 storey block which was the accommodation to the island’s doctor and his wife, some occasional workers who did random jobs on the island (and listened to loud music after work in their room), and one other couple who stayed there for one week of our stay. By no means this was a 4 star superior room accommodation. The wooden floor had massive holes and gaps throughout making it an easy access to all sorts of insects, the furniture was so old and had uneven surfaces, dirty, dusty and sticky, lamps were nailed to the nightstands (!), the bathroom floor was rusty and had mold in the corners, the hairdryer had wires sticking out, I can go on and on, but the best proof is the pictures attached.

The very first time we used the shower we realised that it was blocked and the water wasn't draining properly so after a quick shower the whole bathroom floor was flooded. Once it was flooded, dozens of ants came out of the wholes in the floor so they were floating all over the bathroom floor and once the water was gone we counted we had over 50 of them lying dead around our bathroom - it was disgusting. We complained about the quality of the room and the bathroom problem. The guy at reception laughed and said he will give us a different room. When I asked if the new room would be of a better quality he laughed again and said he couldn't guarantee that. I am not sure what exactly he found so hilarious about the situation.

The new room was just 2 doors away in the same block. We didn't have a problem with the bathroom again but the quality of the room was just as bad. Half way through our holiday they started some building work on the first floor of our block. We had to listed to drills going off throughout the day and late at night, painting smell, dust etc etc etc. Not to mention that the connecting door to our neighbours' room had a massive gap at the bottom so you could hear EVERYTHING. We hoped for a bit more privacy on our honeymoon.

The shower gel (which is also you hand wash, which is also your shampoo) was not refilled regularly. We had to ask reception every time we ran out of it. One day we went to reception again and asked for it to be refilled. Next thing we know, this maintenance guy comes over with the tool box. Said he was there to fix our shower gel problem. I told him it just needs to be refilled. He insisted on inspecting it with his tool box. LOL! Let’s just say, lack of appropriate level of English amongst staff did create extra work for them. By the way, if you do end up going to this island, pack up your own toiletries.

Food: Kitchen staff were mostly Bangladeshi. With all my respect to these guys, imagine Bangladeshi guys (who have never tasted Italian food) cooking Italian food. It sums it up. It was horrible. It was the same every single day apart from the Maldivian night when food just about tasted like it was food. Everything was either cold, or had no taste, or was absolutely unhealthy and greasy. My husband was brave at the beginning and tried to eat a bit of everything but very quickly got sick and had to be more careful. I spent 2 weeks eating a piece of bread for breakfast, 2 toasts for lunch and some plain pasta for dinner. This is until one day I found some insects in it so I stopped eating it too. By the end of the second week I was simply starving. And this was not a matter of personal taste. I expect more form a 4 star hotel than half of that chese that is pre-packed in plastic and tastes like rubber (I didn't even know they still produced that stuff!), only one type of ham available and it tasted very sour so I was scared it was off and didn't eat it. Fruit was not for grabs - there was always a guy who you had to ask to cut a piece for you and he would get very much upset if you asked for more than one slice of it. The selection of fruit was also very poor (watermelon, papaya and some apples and oranges, some dirty small black bananas were also on offer). The problem was that there is only 1 restaurant so you had no other choice but eat there. There were no other food options - free or at an additional cost.

Entertainment: unless you are Italian and like it cheap, you are unlikely to enjoy it. The DJ guy attempted to sing every night. Most of the times he was just sitting behind his keyboard and made some offensive to your ear sounds. Horrible!! I also did not appreciate the whole animation team eating at the same buffet as the guests. I have never seen it at any other hotel.

Island doctor: useless. My husband needed some very basic cream for his skin at some point, the doctor said he had ordered it from Male and it should arrive "soon". He never followed up with us as promised and in 10 days we were there I am sure he never received the cream.

Spa: mixed feelings. There is no atmosphere at the spa. The rooms are so basic and dirty, you can hardly relax there. I had 2 massages there which from the technical perspective were ok but the experience was not great. The beds were very old and hard, towels had holes in them. The staff have very rough skin on their hands. I spoke to another couple about their experience and they said at first they thought a scrub was used on them before they realised this was the hand skin issue!!! But have to say, the staff were friendly and did best they could with what they had.

Ocean: On the bright side of things, if you look out into the ocean and forget the horrible food/accommodation/service behind you - it is a beautiful place. The coral reef around the island is just meters away from the beach. The water is so clear and warm you don't want to get out. Snorkeling is absolutely amazing. We saw all sorts of fish of all possible colours, saw little reef sharks who are always around the beach chasing after little fish. Beautiful! The only complaint about the beach is lack of umbrellas and only 1 shower for the whole island. I guess it is not a big issue if you have a water front room, but if you are unfortunate enough to stay in the middle of the island as we were, it was a pain going back to the room every time you get out of the ocean.

Check-out: We were leaving early in the morning so we were asked to check out in the night. At the beginning of our stay we booked a boat trip but then decided not to go and cancelled it. We notified the animation team and they said it was fine and would be taken off our bill. At the check-out we noticed that this tour was still included on our bill. We asked the receptionist to excluded it but he insisted we had taken the trip. We then had to tell him who we talked to at the time. He called this woman from the animation team who confirmed that we had not taken the trip. The receptionist got furious with her and said she should have told reception so they didn't look like idiots in front of the guests. Mind you - we were standing right there watching this show. The reception manager then interfered and ordered both of them to the back office room. They came out 2 mins later with the animation lady running out almost in tears and the reception guy continued to handle our bill in no rush taking his time with a look on his face like we owed him for all this inconvenience. At no point did we get an apology for our inconvenience and 30 mins of wasted time watching this show.

Just to make it very clear - if you expect a 2-2.5 star holiday and pay accordingly, this is a good value for money. But if you pay over £5K for a 4 star experience, Maayafush is a joke! It's all about the expectations. Market it as a 2-2.5 star accommodation and people will not be disappointed. But don't present it for what it is not.

I travel a lot for work and always stay at high end hotels, I have been to the Maldives before and stayed at Four Seasons, so I know what quality is and what is not, what is the standard of a 4 star hotel and what is a dump. Maayafush is certainly a dump.

Never never never again. Will never recommend it to anyone. It was a waste of our time, a waste of a honeymoon and a waste of every single penny spent. Good the weather was perfect so we could enjoy the ocean, but beyond that, there is nothing good to remember.

Room Tip: Don't go. But if you do, get some snacks with you, some toiletries, bring your own snorkeling gear to avoid extra charge at the hotel, make sure you get a confirmation you are staying in a water front room and not the block in the middle of the island.
  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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30  Thank Kate A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 18, 2013

For our third visit to the Maldives we picked Maayafushi, a beautiful small island
We arrived on the island by the sea plane and immediately welcomed by the staff with a refreshing fruit cocktail: check in at the reception was a little bit slow as our plane and the speed boat arrived at the same time so we had to wait a little before entering our bungalow (beach bungalow in front of the main beach).
The room are clean and enough big, even if too close to each other, Maldivian bathroom and in general very basic.
You can walk around the island in 10 minutes, enjoying the beautiful white sand and the color of the ocean; little sharks and a stingray right near the shore, many kind of fishes all around the beautiful reef...we saw even dolphins and a turtle! At the beach point you can borrow a canoe and wind surf, was very nice using the canoe around the island, with clean water you can see everything below.
There are some excursions organised by the resort: we didn't join the one to the village as we have been before and we didn't want to spend money buying souvenirs, we going instead the one at the desert island, a beautiful day of snorkeling in different reefs with lunch on this amazing island. We also went to the night fishing trip on the dhoni (Maldivian boat) fishing and having dinner on it (my husband got a huge fish and they prepared to share!)...the return looking at the stars from the boat is simply unique.
Other excursions proposed were daily morning snorkeling, daily fishing and of course the dive center programme for scuba divers.
The restaurant is buffet based, with always fresh fish, but the food in general was not various and, except for the Maldivian night, quite repetitive.. in a 4* we would expect more quality. Drinks included were soft drink, beer and white wine.
At the bar, the all inclusive formula works well: there is a good choice of cocktails and drinks, and if you don't want to pay for the bottle of water, you can take as much glasses as you can carry before Midnight.
Another thing to improve is the service at the reception: the lack of English for a resort is not acceptable cos, even if the staff is Italian as the most part of the guests, there were also clients from other countries and we want the same high quality service as Italian guests.
The entertainment staff is Italian, very professional and polite: they organize sports and activities, but they never insist if you want to relax instead of join them. We also enjoyed the evening shows, even if sometimes we couldn't understand the language, but was a nice way to spend the night while having a cocktail at the bar.

Except for some things to be improved, we really enjoyed out stay in Maayafushi.

Room Tip: Beach bungalows in front of the long beach for the best sunset views, on the side (near the volleyball court) to stay quiet.
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank InVenereVeritas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 30, 2012

Beautiful small Island - clean, warm, clear sea.
Fabulous coral reef an easy 50m swim/paddle with great reef fish. Great food - great staff - comfortable (beach) room with a small terrace onto an immaculate white coral sandy beach. Very relaxed - shoes not required - but with all mod cons. - good A/C (needed at night) large smart bathroom with twin showers and basins. King size bed, firm but comfy, mini bar two wardrobes one with a safe - thankfully no TV no telephone - bliss.... what else do you need?
I had to double check some of the reviews, to see if this was the same place.This is an Italian owned and run resort - would have thought Italian food was to be expected! (and perhaps lots of Italians?) No swimming pool!?! you are never more than 50m from the beautiful clear clean Indian ocean...who needs a pool! Take a book or two, sun tan stuff and a hat - chill out - ciao!

Room Tip: Beach rooms around no.30 are away from noise - water villa no. 197 (end of row) is best.
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Charles C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 18, 2012

We stayed here mid February 2012, for a week - arriving on a Sunday mid morning and leaving on the following Saturday afternoon
We had an amazing stay!
This was our second visit to the Maldives, having stayed at Vilamendhoo 10 years ago.
Although Maayafushi is small, there was plenty to do - snorkelling, diving, volleyball and beach tennis, kayaks, catamaran and plenty of off-island trips, as well as a lovely spa.
Its a very pretty Island and has beautiful soft sand and a wonderful house reef - we found Nemo and a saw a large ray too! There are groynes, but not baskets of stones - here they are fingers which protrude out into the sea and you can walk out on them and watch the fish.
Our beach bungalow wase spacious, with plenty of hanging and shelves, a fridge, a rack for cases and a sofa. The bathroom had double sinks and two showers - one inside and one outside. The room was exceptionally clean - fresh bed linen and towels every day, it was cleaned twice a day and also beach towels replaced whenever you wished by taking them to reception. A mosquito net was provided but had no cause to use it - we didn't see (or hear) a mosquito all week!).
Everyone appeared to be on all-inclusive, and meals were plentiful with lots of choice - breakfast always included hot cooked as well as cereals, breads, pastries, fruit etc. Lunch had a huge array of salads and light food as well as cooked meats and fish. Dinner was similar to lunch with an even bigger choice! The wine available with dinner was ok! (You could buy better wine by the bottle if you felt the need!). The Coffee shop on the beach served pastries and drinks in the morning and in the afternoon also served pizza and toasted sandwiches.
The staff were all amazing - all spoke English as well as Italian, which was a benefit given we were the only English people on the Island that week!
The resort was almost full, but the island absorbed the 160 + guests easily, and never felt crowded, even when the restaurant was full.
The 'animations' team were fun, but never overbearing or pushy. They would ask if you'd like to join in, but left you alone if you declined.
Although others have complained at the cost of bottled water, we felt it wasn't an issue - we bought a couple of large bottles at the start of the week to keep in our room fridge, and used them to top up some smaller bottles to use on the beach, but to be honest, you are always so close to the coffee shop or bar it takes no effort to go and get a drink from there.
We did use the room safe - doesn't everyone when they go on holiday?! We took our own snorkelling stuff as people said the cost of hire was $10 dollars a day - it's less than this, and less then $30 for the week. Internet was $7 for 15 mins, but let us use Skype to keep in contact with the kids at home and show them what an amazing time we were having!!!
Don't take shoes with you - you really won't need them! Daytime wear was swimwear and a cover-up for use in the restaurant and bars. Being an Italian resort, many did make an effort for dinner in the evening, which was nice.
We'd love to go back here again - it was a very relaxed island and we had an amazing holiday.

Room Tip: The sunset side of the Island get a little more noise from seaplanes, but the sunrise side gets less sun in the afternoon! We had room 56 - on the sunset side - far enough away from the bar not to be too noisy at night, and tucked in a little so not on the main path.
  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank scsrowe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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