The Maldives; it ranks as one of the most dreamy destinations on earth. In early May 2018 we were lucky enough to tick the Maldives off of our bucket list. Read on for our Kihaa Maldives Review…
Honeymoons, luxury resorts, beaches and sunshine; The Maldives evokes the most perfect images of an island paradise. Mental images of a magical Jackson Pollock, of tropical islands splashed across the turquoise canvas of the Indian Ocean. We were incredibly excited, and probably a tiny bit dubious, to see if it really lived up to the hype. Let me start this whole thing by assuring you that it really is the most stunning place.
“But what about the hotel” I hear you cry, here is our Kihaa Maldives Review.
The Kihaa Maldives Review
When we first booked our flight, we had no clue where to stay or what to see. The Maldives is the most disparate country on earth so there a huge area to pick from. After a little research we found Kihaa Maldives, located on Kihaadhuffaru Island in the Baa Atoll.
The Baa Atoll lies to the West of Male, the capital of the Maldives and location of the main airport. To reach the island, we took a very short domestic flight to an island called Dharavadhoo and then a five minute speedboat to Kihaa. You can also come by seaplane if you are feeling fancy.
If you come to the Baa Atoll at the right time of year you are staying as close as possible to Hanifaru Bay. This is the spot which attracts hundreds of manta rays every year. They come to feed on the up-swell of plankton, and it can also attract friendly whale sharks. If only we had been there two months later!
The boat pulled up to a pier and we stepped up in an excited rush onto Kihaa’s jetty. Ahead of us stretched a swathe of white sandy beach backed by lush greenery.
Note: At this point we had to reset our watches. Kihaa is on “Kihaa Time”, one hour ahead of the rest of the country. (This is to preserve the daylight, a bit like British Summer Time)
We were shown into the reception and main lobby which was sand-floored and timber-lined. It was the perfect beach-side cabana. We were treated to a fresh, young coconut each as we checked in, and had the features and facilities of the resort explained to us. Due to the time change we had to run off and grab our first spot of lunch, before checking in to our room.
Note: Kihaa means young coconut
A Look Around the Property
We were staying in one of Kihaa’s reserve beach villas. Approaching it from the one of the tracks that leads around the island, it was hard to tell what was inside. What a pleasant surprise, it was huge! The king size bed was incredibly tempting after our overnight flight, but we resisted and pulled down the mosquito nets ready for the evening.
Looking around the room, each new little touch made me squeal a teeny tiny bit. I loved that there was a can of Raid in the cupboard just in case you need to defeat an insect foe. The tea selection was really very good for in room facilities and if you like cold drinks, there’s Coke, Sprite and beer in the fridge, and drinking water to put in there too. Even better than that, was the bottle of bubbly on the table. That got quite a big squeal!
We had several places to lounge other than the bed. On the side was a reading nook covered in cushions, a table with two chairs and a garden furniture suite outside. A few steps through the foliage and we had our very own sunbeds on a fabulous beach.
Oh the bathroom! It was definitely the fanciest bathroom we have ever had. It was partly outside which was super cool. We had not one, or two, but three showers! There was one outside, one under the cover of the roof and one in our roll top bath. In the shower we got shower gel, shampoo and conditioner. I always love when someone gives us conditioner; Mr Fluskey doesn’t care so much.
Using the toilet almost outside took a little getting used to, but showering with the sun shining through the water was incredible. Mr Fluskey even took a shower in the rain. That’s one for a bucket list.
Note: The Maldives sits in the Arabian Sea, although many people describe it as in the Indian Ocean. Now, on with our Kihaa Maldives Review.
We also got the chance to look around the utterly divine, and totally sought after water villas. There are ten water villas at Kihaa, and two water suites. When most people think of the Maldives, this is what they are picturing, so we just couldn’t leave without nosing around.
These villas are in the best place to enjoy sunset as the pier is pointing West. Every single one has its own little pool and stairs leading directly into the turquoise waters of the Arabian Sea. You can relax on your deck and watch the fish below you. The water villas all have HUGE showers and roll top baths. The suites give you a whole extra room and bathroom. You could fit a whole family in there, or just enjoy having all that space to yourselves.
Activities Around the Resort
There are two public pools at Kihaa. I say public because there are four kinds of room with their own private pools!
The family pool is a quirky series of circles set back from the beach and surrounded by plenty of seating. The bar is near enough to keep your thirst quenched.
The other option is the infinity pool. This is set right on the beach and looks out over the sea. We spent a lot more time here. I adored the cool seating options around it (sun beds, day beds, cabanas) and thought the tiles were gorgeous!
So if you are coming all the way to the Maldives, then you must like a nice beach. Luckily, Kihaa is set on the stunning island of Kihaadhuffaru which has almost a kilometre of beautiful white sand. We loved exploring along the coast. There were deserted stretches that we had all to ourselves, loads of funky seating options and the water that lapped the shore was just perfectly clear. Below is quite a big collection of beach photos throughout the day.
We made the mistake of ignoring the gym until the last day. Usually the gym or sports centre at hotels are small and sad. How different this was! We were blown away by the size of the room, the variety of machines, and how clean and cool it was. They have free weights, tennis courts and even two squash courts!
The Dive Centre
We popped in to discuss our option and the staff were very friendly. We ended up booking a short snorkelling trip to Turtle Reef. It was just an hour and a half but they gave us water on the boat on the way out. Then, on the way home we got coffee and cookies.
Underwater our guide found four turtles, a baby shark and loads of fish. It was a lovely way to spend an hour. The equipment was great quality with not a single mask leak…that’s pretty rare for us.
Had we been at the resort longer, we would definitely have made use of the water sports. Included is paddle boarding and small catamarans. There was also a very tempting jet ski. I am always so worried that I’ll crash though (and am far too excited to let Mr Fluskey steer it). I think we will wait until there is a whole lot of open ocean to try it.
The K Spa
The large water villa near the main restaurant is the resort’s spa. We popped in to have a look around and peruse the menu. The whole place smelled delicious, the perfect mingling of lemongrass and tea tree that always whets my spa appetite. Sitting and looking at the different massage options, we could feel the sea breeze. We chose not to have any treatments but the staff were all very nice.
Our meal plan was the “all meals” plan. That meant three meals a day at the main buffet, with soft drinks during the service. They also offer an all-inclusive plan which covers lot more.
Malaafaiy – The Buffet
This is the buffet restaurant, which was surprisingly good. We didn’t see any recycled food, which is always a very good sign. The variety of hot dishes was interesting and everything was tasty. We enjoyed the pasta station which had good al dente pasta shapes cooked in a choice yummy sauces. We have been victim to soggy pasta stations in the past so this was a nice surprise.
Breakfast was pretty good. There was cereal, a buffet and an omelette station. I was quite impressed with quality of the croissants and other pastries. They were crispy and light, not usually the case on hotel buffets outside of France.
Sangu – A La Carte
We didn’t try the a la carte but considering the quality of the buffet, I bet it is delicious. There is something special about dining on the beach, with the sand between your toes and the sound of the waves as a backdrop.
Undhoali – The Main Bar
The infinity pool bar was by far our favourite. Not only was it by the gorgeous pool, but it has SWINGS!!! Such a happy Rosie. We had two cocktails here, both mixed beautifully. They were not the terrible watered-down kind that is often the curse of the all-inclusive hotel. It is worth noting that the all-inclusive package doesn’t cover every drink, about 20% of the menu is still chargeable. When we ordered a drink in late afternoon, it came with a couple of little snacks too, a welcome addition.
Raaveriya – By The Other Pool
The next bar is tucked behind the family pool. It is fully stocked with alcohol from all over the world. The Cava, the cheapest bubbles on the menu, was surprisingly tasty. They also have mocktails and little snacks.
If you don’t just fancy hanging out on your veranda, sitting in your pool or getting an early night, there are daily evening activities. The first night we were there was movie night. Working our way through our bottle of bubbly, we knew we would fall asleep if we tried to watch a film, so we just relaxed on the other beach, which we had all to ourselves.
On our second evening, we got to take part in a cocktail party. This is a chance to mingle with the staff and enjoy some brightly coloured drinks. We had such wonderful conversations with the people we had seen around the resort.
Later that evening, we also joined in with the karaoke by the pool. Unfortunately we don’t have any video evidence of this. Trust me, you wouldn’t want to see it. It was a very jovial atmosphere and staff joined in as well as guests. It was so great to hear some proper Maldivian songs, as well as our butchering of musical theatre classics.
- Dharavandhoo Airport (DRV) has very regular flights to Male International (MLE), your gateway to The Maldives from all over the world.
- They sometimes have great deals like “kids stay for free”. To check out the website or to book directly with them, visit their website at http://www.kihaamaldives.com/
Kihaa was taken over by new management a year or two ago. The original managements were Italian, the new owners are Maldivian and are making real strives to recapture the Maldivian essence of the resort. We thought that it was obvious that everyone really cares about your experience. If you want to find a place in the Maldives that will welcome you with open hearts then come and discover Kihaa.
We were hosted by Kihaa Maldives but we had a genuinely wonderful time and as always, all opinions are my own.