Welcome to the ‘dream island’ – literally translated from the Maldivian language of Divehi as Huvafen Fushi
Huvafen Fushi is a quick speedboat skip from Male International airport. We were met with warm cheery resort staff, holding up a huge welcome sign, bursting into traditional song with beating Maldivian drums and were offered thirst-quenching cranberry coolers to settle into island life.
With hours of travelling taking its toll and jet lag starting to set in, we were ecstatic to be informed that no reception/foyer space exists here and that all check-in happens in the comfort of your room. And with that, a quick buggy ride meandered us through the lush sandy island, on to the wooden decked pier over a twinkling turquoise lagoon to drop us off at our overwater ocean villa.
With just 44 villas (both overwater and beach, some which lavishly feature swimming pools that reach inside your living space and flow through to the outdoors, along with indoor/outdoor tropical showers), Huvafen Fushi prides itself in offering the utmost privacy and exclusivity to its guests.
With rooms that are so incredibly spacious, couples that wish to spend some healthy time apart can easily do that. Our villa comprised of a mini bar with lounge and open glass floor to view marine life in the lagoon below, a massive bed facing a freshwater plunge pool and further out, the lapping ocean and then, a separate bathroom with twin wash basins, big hot tub (the perfect indoor antidote when travelling off season and you encounter some tropical rain) and when the humidity levels are high and you’ve got long, wavy hair, you’ll appreciate the high-performance, hair-smoothing hairdryer. If everything else doesn’t scream deluxe already, then the Aqua Di Palma shower products will seal the deal to make a statement. As you would expect from a resort of this calibre, rooms also feature Bose sound systems that even play when you’re in the bathroom and out on the deck. There’s also excellent Wi-Fi service everywhere you go.
When surrounded by natural Maldivian beauty and high specifications, Huvafen Fushi’s attention is fully turned to its guests and how to stay unrivalled against its competitors. The ratio of staff to guests is maintained at a high level of 5:1, allowing for you to have your very own butler, to ensure your dream stay is a reality.
We were lucky to experience a very dreamy, couples massage down at the highly impressive underwater spa. We eagerly descended into an aquarium realm to watch an abundance of sea life dreamily bob along in and out of the coral reef during our treatments and relaxed in a private pod with a soothing hot herbal tea afterwards.
Various activities are available if you wish to do more than daydream on the island. Snorkelling around the tropical house reef is an absolute highlight and must. As it circles the entire island, the condition and protection of the coral is of the highest priority and a marine biologist works to keep it that way. There’s also ray feeding every evening as well as diving and enjoying a day out on a Dhoni – a traditional Maldivian sailboat.
As a full-on foodie, experiencing great cuisine is another top priority and Huvafen Fushi ticks the box. Fresh pizzas bake in a wood-fired oven at the beachfront restaurant, Faglioni’s, healthy light, fresh yet high-on-flavour bites such as chilled gazpacho and crabmeat are served at Raw restaurant and cocktail bar perched over the sea, curries galore to feast on at the Maldivian-themed buffet served at Cass, which is also where breakfast spreads including masala omelettes, coconut water and avocado await. For authentic Indian flavours, there’s Cardamom, where a private chef prepares your tandoori favourites right in front of you and up to five of your guests.
Another highlight is the lobster champagne menu at Salt – another overwater restaurant. We tucked into seven indulgent courses paired with champagne and wines whilst overlooking the sea. Wine lovers and fellow foodies will also love Vinum, the seriously cool (literally and metaphorically) cellar with enough space to house 6,000 bottles and a large dining table at the centre to experience a gourmet menu with some sommelier selected, wine pairings. Hot stones are placed under your feet to keep you warm and cosy while you dine.
As we jetted off to next explore Huvafen Fushi’s hip sister property, Niyama, we clutched on to our memories of this enchanting dream island.
Huvafen Fushi – Where and How?
For more information on Huvafen Fushi, visit www.minorhotels.com/en/peraquum/huvafen-fushi
By Reena Patel
See more of Huvafen Fushi in the gallery below