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“Wonderful honeymoon”
Review of Velassaru Maldives

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Velassaru Maldives
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 14, 2010

Just got back from the Velassaru and do miss the island already. The location itself was peaceful, lovely beaches, great pool and lovely food. Seafood lovers would enjoy the menus! And a tip off- the sushi there is out of this world!
The prices were pretty high there you are looking at £100 for dinner excluding dessert and wine! this is to be expected however in the area as everything is shipped over.
Having stayed in many luxury 5 star places, i would not say the rooms were to the highest standard, or a standard we were expecting. Although cleanish and still attractive to a four star standard. The staff although very helpful i could not help but feel were not sincere and as a women do expect to be ignored a bit by male staff or not addressed as much due to your gender- this can only be expected in a largely Muslim area.
For what we paid we could have gone much more luxurious elsewhere.
There is very little to do also which is the idea but do not come here for partying! This means it is the perfect place to relax, they always play chill out music.
Lots of wildlife and we saw sharks and large sting rays in fairly shallow water!
All in all a great place with a few small let downs.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank hanamw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 9, 2010

We stayed at Velassaru resort one week at the beginning of May and I can honestly say that if anyone has complaints about the hotel or island, they are just looking for problems as it was absolutely amazing. My husband and I couldn’t find one thing to complain about.

The island is about 20 mins by speedboat from the airport. If you contact the hotel in advance they will arrange transfers for you. The desk at the airport is the Universal Resort desk, numbers 4 & 5. You may have to wait for the others arriving to clear customs before the boat leaves but we didn’t wait long.

We stayed in a water bungalow which is slightly smaller than the water villas, and also at the opposite end of the island from the restaurants and reception. Although it’s no more than a 10 minute walk, in the 35 degree + heat and humidity, it feels like a long walk! That’s not a complaint in anyway though. The villa we had faced the sunrise and also Wadhyu resort. We could also see Male in the distance. The villas on the opposite side faced the sunset but could also see the Rubbish Island (literally where rubbish is burned every day). Although this is in the distance you can see the smoke and flames all the time.

We ate at every restaurant on the island. Favourite for location was Sands which is set on the beachfront. Our favourite for food was Turquoise where we had curries. The nicest restaurant was Etesian which has a huge wine cellar and the most unique is Tepanyaki which is a sushi restaurant out on a jetty overlooking the sea. Our least favourite was Vela which is a buffet. The food was great but at $65 per head, we found it overpriced for the food and I can never eat very much anyway.

The Chill Bar at the far end of the island, by the water bungalows is great for afternoon snacks and watching the sunset. Plan to pay approximately $30 to $35 per course and $12 to $15 for a cocktail or glass of wine. Beer was slightly cheaper. We went half board so our breakfast was included, and for the week was spent an additional $1600 on food and drinks. This was for snacks at lunch with a few cocktails and dinner every night with one or two drinks each.

We went on the Male excursion which cost approximately $75 per person and included a guided tour for about 3.5 hours. Although it was great to see Male, it’s very small and you wouldn’t need more than about 2 hours there.

We also took a scuba diving lesson which was $170 per person. We watched a video for about 45 mins, then the next day had about 20 mins instruction then went out scuba diving for about 20 mins. I would definitely recommend scuba diving in the Maldives, although if you don’t fancy it I saw just as many fish snorkeling around the corals. The resort provides free snorkeling gear for the time you are at the hotel.

I would highly recommend the resort to anyone thinking of going to the Maldives. Velassaru would be more suitable for couples than for families but there are activities such as snorkeling, table tennis, gym, tennis courts and board games which might suit children depending on their age.

Wifi internet access is available, and there is also a computer for use at the reception area.

The temperature was in the high 30s and extremely humid when we were there, so casual clothes were fine, some people did dress up a bit at dinner. As there are no paved paths on the island, everything is sandy including some of the restaurant floors, I wouldn’t recommend bringing heels or fancy shoes, unless you like wearing those at the beach.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank SoCal_bound
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 7, 2010

Having visited several resorts in the Maldives, and after much research, we were confident Velassaru would deliver yet another 5 star holiday experience. Unfortuantely, this wasn't the case for us. The island itself, after undergoing a recent refurbishment is, as one would expect, clean, fresh and inviting. We were in room 412, one of the new water villas, with uninterupted views of the indian ocean. We were fortunate not to be given a water villa overlooking rubbish island. On a couple of days, due to the direction of the wind, you could smell the rubbish burning aswell as having quite alot of rubbish floating around the island and washing up on shore - but something the hotel were very quick to try and clean up. Yes, rubbish island is somewhat in the distance, but anyone with a preconception of waking up on a tropical hideaway with uniterupted views of the indian ocean may be somewhat disappointed.
The staff are friendly and attentive without being overbearing. They simply can't do enough for you!
The downside for us was the food, but something that the hotel were quick to try and resolve. Breakfast and lunch were good (most days) but the eveing meal in Velu failed to live up to expectations. I ackowledge this is very subjective according to one's tastes, but we felt the food was more akin to a 3 star resort. It looked far better than it actually tasted. Other resorts alot further from Male than Velassaru have overcome the issue of using fresh good quality ingredients so the excuse of having to import everything doesnt stand up. Compared to other resorts such as Coco Dhuni or Huvafen there was simply no comparison.
Overall, we had a pleasant holiday, but unfortunately we wont be returning.

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank jd76Midlands
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 2, 2010

My partner and I returned back to the UK from Velassaru today - we are devasted to be back!

This hotel is amazing and I wouldn't hesistate to recommend it to my best friends. We stayed in a beach villa (room 220) and the room and the view was stunning. If you can afford to upgrade to a beach villa do. Some of the garden bungalows backed onto the staff quarter/ maintenance area and it seemed quite noisy.

The staff were extremely friendly and always went out of their way to assist. Everyone you walked pass said hello. The resort adds special touches like staff walking around during the day handing out cool refresher towels and fruit kebabs.

I was a little hesitant about the buffet dining, however the food was superb. We like good food and I was very suprised by the high standard. Each night they had a different theme, Italian, Sri Lankan, Indian etc. The salads were delicious and there was a grill where they cooked different sorts of meat to your liking.

In terms of food and beverages, Pizzas cost around 20USD, Crispy squid salad 28 USD, cocktails 12 USD, Beer 8 USD.

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank AussieTraveller1023
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 25, 2010

Having been to the Maldives in the past, we selected Velassaru because it offered a wider selection of meal options, water sports and a spa, before moving on to Dubai for a week. We booked a 10 day holiday in a beach villa through Kuoni on HB basis with friends.

Velassaru is very close to Male and only a short, sedate ‘water taxi’ (not speedboat as described) ride away. Be aware that the rubbish island, which spews smoke 24/7 is very apparent from most of the island and the acrid smell of burning plastic can be experienced frequently. And where the rubbish island is not in sight, Male is. For an ‘away from it all’ location, simply chose somewhere else.

The standard of customer service is an area where Velassaru really excel. The staff are exceptionally friendly, welcoming and helpful, responding quickly to guest requests and are always cheerful.

Our beach villa was very comfortable, with the usual Maldivian feature of an inside/outside shower and bathroom. The bed was exceptionally comfortable with high quality linen and well deserving of the 5-star standard.

The quality and variety of food was generally good in the Vela restaurant, with only one meal falling below expectations, which was rectified promptly. In my view a buffet meal service rarely feels 5 star, and this was no exception. If you chose not to use the HB option, be prepared for a significant bill at the end of your stay. The other 3 restaurants on the island were eerily empty during our stay over Easter, and a glance at the price list will tell you why - simply overpriced. On a couple of nights they simply closed for lack of custom. No need to worry about pre-booking these meals. If you do choose to dine in the other restaurants whilst on half board basis, you get a paltry 30% discount off the inflated prices, resulting in you virtually paying for meals twice.

As mentioned in other reviews the cost of beverages is significant and I noticed that the most popular beverage in the dining room was water. I suspect this is due to the inflated prices.

The spa facilities are most impressive, located on it’s own stilted enclave. The problem is you are even charged for the use of the Jacuzzi (uncommon in my experience in a 5 start resort) and the treatments are very costly, compared to what we have paid in ‘Six Senses’ Spas elsewhere. Needless to say, it didn’t appear busy.

Watersports are costly with a Jet Ski rental costing $175 for half an hour and even non-motorised activities (canoe, windsurfers etc) at a significant cost. The good news is that at these prices, they are always available!

Staff in the dive centre can be best described as indifferent, unless you want to book a costly excursion or buy a $50 or $250 ‘coral frame’ (best described as a wire cage in the shape of a turtle about the size of your hand). A health a safety issue was raised with a member of the dive centre team, whose solution was a $50 learn to snorkel session.

At all times we found the entire resort spotlessly clean and that standard of housekeeping exemplary.

Having been to the Maldives before, we appreciate that it is string of islands in the middle of the ocean and that everything must be imported. In our view, Universal Enterprises are spoiling an excellent resort by their extortionate pricing policy, and flagrant commercialism. On departure I asked if someone was available for me to provide some customer feedback and was told ‘you’ll get an email’ – which I still await, suggesting to me that they simply aren’t interested in what the customer thinks.

Having spoken to a number of people whilst in Velassaru, and despite other reviews making light of the ‘elephant in the room’, the two words on everyone’s lips are – ‘Rip Off’.

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank JohnL18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2010

We stayed for 7 nights in march and had a lovely time. If it is your first visit you will love it.
I will try to break everything down in catagories so its easier to read.

BEACH:
AMAZING!! The water is so crystal blue you will have to pinch yourself to remind you of where you are. The best beach outside of the bungalows and villas are in our opinion the side near to the spa going round to the water bungalows but about half way round there is not much coral reefs and the sand is not as soft. On the opposite side of the island there is too much boat traffic and thats all you will see.

VILLA:
We stayed in the deluxe bungalow for the first 5 nights and then the beach villa on the last 2 nights. Definately worth the upgrade, the rooms in the villas have more of a luxury feel to it, bathroom is more spacious and luxurious! As mentioned before depending on where they allocate your beach villa the beach where we were, were not as nice and not that great for snorkelling as where our bungalow was positioned. our Bungalow was no 117. Beach villa was 213.

Food:
This seems to be a hot topic on here and as previously mentioned by others DO NOT GO HALF/FULL BOARD. We took the advice of others on here and went B/B. We are so glad we did. We did however try Vela one night to judge for ourselves and yes not worth the money! I think we paid $168 which could buy you a decent meal in the other restaurants. The teppenyaki is lovely really enjoyed it here, we went 2 nights. Staff really friendly, food is freshly cooked before you. Wonderful experience.
Our favourite restaurant was Etesian we went there 2 nights also. Sand is not bad but I think the menu is different for the candlight tables and hence the price is more expensive. I think we paid $260 for a average meal with no wine. Partner had 2 JD n coke and that was it so its worth checkin before you book.
Lunch we mostly ate at the Fen bar which I loved. A ggod selection of pizza, wraps, sushi. They have a specials menu everyday which gave it a bit of variation!

Spa:
A relaxing place to spend a couple of hours, I had my best massage ever in there. Prices are quite expensive really but so is the rest of the resort.

Service: Some good, some bad....sometimes you had to remind them about certain things for example at dinner one night at turquoise I asked if I could smoke where we were sat. We were outside but just wanted to double check as we were on the decking. The waitor said no then yes then said he would double check. He didnt, I asked again and then waited. He finally found out I could so I asked for an ashtray..I waited and waited...I asked him again for an ashtray before I finally just lit up my cig anyway. He bought out the ashtray only after our bread basket was brought to us. Just in time for me to put it out!
Service on arrival was welcoming and always pleasent when they saw you around the island. Just a bit hit and miss at times.

Watersports:
We did kayaking which was fun and not badly priced. It takes around 20 mins to get around but if your like me and just prefer to sit back and watch your partner do all the work it will take around 45 mins!
We really wanted to do go on the jet ski but some things are just too ridiculous to justfie. $275 for 1 hour!!! We only saw a couple of ppl going for it. If you want to entertain yourself it will cost you basically!


Overall experience:
Lovely hotel, very relaxing. If its your first time you will have an amazing time but bear in mind it is very expensive but you are where you are. There are other resorts that are far more reasonably priced for example the Coco Palm Bodu Hithi which we are booking this August for honeymoon and their standard rooms look amazing far more superior than the deluxe bungalows here so maybe its worth having a look. If you do however choose Velassaru, dont eat in Vela, bring lots of money and have a great time!!

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank rose888England
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 15, 2010

Me and my husband left the children at home for a 7 night break for our anniversary.
After months of looking at lots of different hotels we decided to stay at the Velassaru and we are so glad with our choice.
We have travelled a lot and believe me i can always complain about something but this island was amazing.

One thing i have to say is that from the moment we arrived until the time we left the staff were so attentive and made you feel really special.
Mohamed the front of house manager done everything he could for us including arranging a special BBQ on the beach with our own chef and waiter for our anniversary. It was amazing.

We stayed in a water villa which was fabulous although we never really got our monies worth as we were always around the pool and out doing something.
The rooms are amazing and we looked at them all and they are first class.

Before we went we were worried about the rubbish island thing but as previous people wrote its a bit of smoke and a few lights in the distance, we personally never saw the issue (you know what some people are like, moan about anything).

Food was amazing, we tried all the resturants and never had one bad meal. Yes, it is very expensive as well as the drink but no dearer than a night out in London.

We went B&B and i would properly go half board or full board next time and then use the other resturants as and when to keep costs down. I think you get a discount in some resturants if you are on full board.

I would defo go back and would even take my children as we loved it

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank sunbathequeen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Velassaru Maldives

Address: Velassaru Island
Phone Number:
Location: Maldives > Kaafu Atoll > South Male Atoll > Velassaru Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Velassaru Island
Price Range: $453 - $1,559 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Velassaru Maldives 5*
Number of rooms: 129
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Luxury Undressed. Gentle sands leading you to the water's edge. Soothing vistas across the spectacular turquoise lagoon at sunset. Minimalist contemporary chic meets comfortable natural elegance in your own private hideaway. Five dining venues, each providing a taste of the exotic. Two innovative bars, the ultimate chill-out. Experiences that immerse you in local culture, underwater explorations that introduce you to our tropical marine world. Days and nights of simple indulgence. Step into the unknown. Welcome to Velassaru. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Velassaru Maldives Hotel South Male Atoll
Velassaru Maldives Laguna Beach Male
Velassaru Maldives Laguna Beach Hotel

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