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Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi {MDV}

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi {MDV}

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Old Mar 5, 20, 9:51 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: Corridor!
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:-: Welcome to the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi Wiki! :-:
Notes: All prices are in US Dollars and are exclusive of taxes unless specified (by ++)

Tax Information
• 10% Service Charge (levied by resort. For info on this and how it's distributed, see this post)
• 12% T-GST (Tourist Goods & Services Tax, levied by the Maldivian government, current as of Oct 1, 2014)
• Total tax is 23.2%, not 22% as one would think. Example; $100 + 10% = $110, then add 12% on to $110 for a total of $123.20
• • Tip: To work out prices before the 23.2% taxes, multiply by 0.81169, i.e; 123.2 * 0.81169 = 100
• A Green Tax of $6pp/pn (levied by the Maldivian government) has been introduced starting from 1 November 2015. Points/Redemption bookings are exempt from the tax for up to two guests per room

Booking with points
• Bookings must be cancelled 30 days prior in order to avoid one full night's charge at BAR. (previously 14 days)
• Website and phone agents state that a cash deposit equivalent to the BAR per night will be taken when booking stays with points. This is an error. NO CASH DEPOSIT IS TAKEN WHEN MAKING A POINTS BOOKING
• Free night certificate: The phone agent states that a cash deposit equivalent to the BAR per night will be taken when booking your free night. This is an error. NO CASH DEPOSIT IS TAKEN WHEN USING YOUR FREE NIGHT CERTIFICATE

Transfers To and From Resort
• Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi is located in South Malι Atoll, 23km southwest of Malι and Velana International Airport [MLE] (also known as Malι International Airport, previously known as Ibrahim Nasir International Airport)
• Transfer experience includes personal service for your group after luggage pick-up until arrival on the yacht; yacht includes dedicated server for champagne, non-alcoholic beverages, and light snacks. Departure experience on the yacht is the same, and your group be personally escorted through airline check-in until airport security.
• Pricing in 2020 is $600++ per person, and in 2019 it was $350++ per person per way ($1724.80 return inclusive of taxes for 2 passengers). The price for kids 5 and under is complimentary while kids 6-11 years old are charged $300++ per person. If the yacht is not available, a speedboat will be provided by the resort. If this happens, you may be refunded the yacht transfer fee.
• See this post for a detailed review of the yacht transfer (Courtesy of jphripjah)
• Third party transfers are not permitted by the resort.
• Transfer to / from Conrad Maldives Rangali Island: A private seaplane transfer from the Waldorf to the Conrad, taking approximately 25 minutes, is approximately USD 8,125++. Most guests travel between the resort booking the standard round trip seaplane from Male to Rangali and then the Yacht transfer round trip from Male to Waldorf.

Resort Information / Spa / Activities
• WA Ithaafushi is made up of three islands (95% man-made)
• There are 2 standalone OWVs (Over Water Villas) and 121 villas in total
• Click here (Hilton's website) or here (dedicated website) to visit the resort on the web
• The kids club (one of the biggest in the Maldives) is for children between 4 to 11 years. Click here for detailed information and here for the schedule. Click here, here and here for basic reviews and comprehensive sets of pictures (All courtesy of Traveler Dave)
• See this and this post for info on the Christmas Eve and New Years Eve Gala Fee
• Click here to visit the resort's listing on TripAdvisor
• Tennis courts: See this post
• For a new map of the resort click here
> For the old map of the resort click here * Note that this map is orientated north and so the SUNRISE and SUNSET written on it are incorrect. Also note that you receive a black and white map when you arrive and this is not as good nor as detailed as the one posted here. For comments on the quality of the map, click here
• Snorkelling spots and other info 3e4sd:Link to post: (Courtesy of AirForceFlyer)
• Scuba Diving pics :Link to post: (Courtesy of Traveler Dave)
• Activities Brochure (prices as of July 2019)
• Spa pics and review :Link to post: (Courtesy of Traveler Dave)
• Wellness Programme :Link to post: (Courtesy of AirForceFlyer)

Resort Information - F&B and Menus
• The resort has 11 restaurants / bars
• Some restaurant menus are available in PDF format on the resort's website. Click here to visit the relevant page on their website
• For pictures of most of the menus: Part 1 and Part 2
• Dining Programme / restaurant opening times: See this post and the post below it
• IVD (In Villa Dining) menus: See this post
• Yasmeen - Menu version discussion here.
• Terra is $298.00++ per person. As of December 2019, the set menu includes Amuse Brioche (3 selections per person), a starter (tuna, avocado, caviar), 2 courses highlighting lobster and wagyu beef with a pallet cleanse in between, a dessert course, then finishing with 3 additional sweet selections per person.
• The Ledge - See this post. Note that this menu changes daily but there are probably only 2 for each day and 14 in total (7 for lunch and 7 for dinner). Chefs rotate to the resort from Burnt Ends in Singapore.
+ Peacock Alley 1/2 priced drinks daily after 9:30pm. High-quality cocktails and liquors available at a very affordable price ranging from $13-$15 post discount
+ Tasting Table full buffet breakfast with made to order entrees and complimentary Champagne for $65++/person or Free for Hilton Diamond / Gold
+ Glow and Yasmeen wine selections are priced in the $65 - $85 ++ range per bottle.
• Lunch can be purchased at the main pool or beach from Nava or The Ledge. The majority of lunch entrees cost $30-$50++. Lunch is also available at Tasting Table, Tangled, or In Villa Dining.
• A new pizza oven was flown in from Italy to replace the original oven installed at Nava, and an Italian chef traveled to the resort to work with the team to elevate pizza quality in early December of 2019.
• During festive season 2019, the resort introduced a lobster & champagne dinner on the beach, including tasting stations, free flow champagne, and a live band for $298++ per person.

Miscellaneous Information
• Villa pool depth: See this post
• Best snorkelling spots: See this post and this post
• Complimentary water (in villa): See this post
• Walking / getting around the resort: See this post
• Sunset / Sunrise at the resort: See this post and this post
• Power outlet configuration: See this post



Elite member benefits:

Hilton Honors GOLD MEMBERS:
  • Full breakfast at Tasting Table
  • In-villa VIP welcome bottle of wine and fruits
  • Complimentary daily afternoon delights (see here for pic) with a fine selection of beverages crafted by mixologist and sommelier from 16:00 to 17:00 at Peacock Alley
  • 50% special offer on selected beverages at Nava Beach Club from 22:00 to 23:30
Hilton Honors DIAMOND MEMBERS:
  • Full breakfast at Tasting Table
  • In-villa VIP welcome Champagne, sweet and savoury amenities
  • [Diamond only benefit] With a selected 60-minute massage, enjoy a complimentary additional 30-minute at Waldorf Astoria Spa
  • Complimentary daily afternoon delights (see here for pic) with a fine selection of beverages crafted by mixologist and sommelier from 16:00 to 17:00 at Peacock Alley
  • 50% special offer on selected beverages at Nava Beach Club from 22:00 to 23:30

Accommodation:
At opening the resort defined Beach Villas as the lowest category of accommodation (only this category bookable with points). The next highest category was Reef Villas then above that, the Overwater Villas. Note: villas on the Private Island do not count.
This will change in 2020. Quote from the resort "Please be informed that for next year we have changed our villa category. Kindly note that the Reef Villa will be our base category, next will be the Overwater Villa and then the Beach Villa. Basically the Beach Villa will be a higher category compared to reef Villa and Overwater Villa."
See this post for the conversation related to this. Pricing has changed as well to reflect this. See below for 2020 pricing.
Note that as of August 2019 the BV is still available to book on points in 2020. This may change, however.

Prices - Accommodation (2020):

***** March 2020 Figures *****
• Beach Villa USD 2630
• Overwater Villa USD 2430
• Reef Villa USD 1930


Prices - Accommodation (2019):

***** July 2019 Figures *****
• 2 Bedroom Beach Villa with Pool USD 3850
• 2 Bedroom Over Water Villa with Pool USD 4350

***** October 2019 Figures *****
• Beach Villa USD 2100
• Grand Beach Villa USD 2300
• Reef Villa USD 2300
• Grand Reef Villa USD 2500
• Overwater Villa USD 2500
• Grand Overwater Villa USD 2700


***** Upgrade Costs - Jul 2019 *****
• Two Bedroom Beach - US 2000
• Two Bedroom Grand Beach - US 2200
• Two Bedroom Reef - US 2200
• Two Bedroom Overwater - US 2400

***** Upgrade Costs - Oct 2019 *****
• Reef Villa USD 200
• OWV USD 400


Villa Types and Abbreviations used in this thread (listed in order from most basic to most luxurious)

-- BVs (Beach Villas) --

BV (Beach Villa)
GBV (Grand Beach Villa)

-- RVs (Reef Villas) --

RV (Reef Villa, the Garden Villa category shown in the pre-opening promo video)
GRV (Grand Reef Villa, also a type of Garden Villa shown in the pre-opening promo video)

-- OWVs (Over Water Villas) aka Ocean Villas in rewards booking --

OV (Overwater Villa)
GOV (Grand Overwater Villa)
SMR (Stella Maris Residences)

-- Occupancy Information --
See this post for maximum occupancy of each villa type

Villa Selection
• See this post and this post
• Privacy - Beach Villas: For pics, info and opinions, see the following posts; 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10


Travel & Safety Information
• The Maldives is listed in Category 1 (the highest category) on the
WHO Zika virus classification table. However, don't let that scare you because as of April 13, 2017 there has only been one confirmed case of Zika in the Maldives
• Click here for information related to the single Zika infection in the Maldives (reported in January of that year)


Contact
• General Enquiries: [email protected]
• Reservations Department: [email protected]
• Tel: +960-4000-300


Weather:
Note: since the resort is close to Mahibadhoo (where there is a weather station), I have added this info from the Conrad Maldives thread as both resorts are close by and the weather will be the same as far as forecasts go (MaldivesFreak)
• General info on weather in the Maldives: Link 1 Link 2 (Maldivian government website)
• Recommended Android weather app: eWeather HD. See this post for detailed info on the app, settings, tips and general weather info (Courtesy of MaldivesFreak)
• Want to get an idea about the weather in the month of August? Click here to read a post from a FT member that spends 2 weeks at Rangali during this month (Courtesy of Splotly)


Pictures - Resort under construction:
• January, 2018 :Link to post:
• June, 2018 :Link to post:
• Approx October, 2018 :Link to post:
• January, 2019 :Link to post:

Pictures & Videos - Post-opening:
• General pics of the resort (July, 2019) :Link to post: (Courtesy of jphripjah)
• The Stella Maris exclusive! :Link to post with links to videos: (Courtesy of alanslegal)
• Breakfast buffet at Tasting Table - Post #1 :Link to post: (Courtesy of alanslegal)
• Breakfast buffet at Tasting Table - Post #2 :Link to post: (Courtesy of jphripjah)
• Breakfast buffet at Tasting Table - Post #3 :Link to post: (Courtesy of Traveler Dave)
• Breakfast buffet at Tasting Table - Post #4 :Link to post: (Courtesy of Another Getaway)
• IVD(in villa dining) :Link to post: (Courtesy of Stivelio)
• Terra (views from all 7 'cages') :Link to post: (Courtesy of jphripjah)
• Terra and Family Pool :Link to post with link to video: (Courtesy of alanslegal)
• Reef Villa with sunset view :Link to post: (Courtesy of Stivelio)
• Views in the direction of Male (night & day pics) :Link to post 1: (Courtesy of wekxbrainx) :Link to post 2: (Courtesy of jphripjah)
• Bicycle tour :Link to post:
• Various resort and villa pics from a stay in November 2019 :Link to post: (Courtesy of aspenedelen)

Reviews:
• Review by goldelite8
• Review by escape4
• Review by Falcons05 (text only)

Historical Information for high rollers:
+ $135 shisha, Check out this post
+ If you do NOT have Gold/Diamond status with Free breakfast AND you decide NOT to pay the $65++ for full buffet at Tasting Table, then you may or may not encounter a $35 charge for a single egg
+ 106,000 dollar bottle of wine: Click
here for a picture of the wine menu (reactions follow on subsequent pages)




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Old Aug 29, 19, 7:19 pm
  #1606  
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: DEN
Posts: 74
Just changed the last four nights of our eight-night stay to an OWV from a BV. The nights are all booked with points, as one block of five and three individual nights. I can see the room change on the reservations.

Now my issue is that I've got two weekend night certificates that I didn't have when I booked, and now there's no availability. In the past I haven't had success getting Hilton to swap out points reservations for certs when there's not extra availability. Beach villas don't seem to be going back into inventory either: a friend canceled his April award night last week and that night never showed up again. It's now been about twelve hours since my nights were converted from BV to OWV, and the only points bookings showing up are premium rooms.
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Old Aug 29, 19, 8:41 pm
  #1607  
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Join Date: Dec 2016
Posts: 8
Nice bike tour of the island visible here: https://youtu.be/342sltC50PU

Last edited by Roque Corona; Aug 29, 19 at 8:53 pm
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Old Aug 29, 19, 11:06 pm
  #1608  
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: YYZ
Programs: AA Plat, Bonvoy Titanium, Hilton Diamond, Golden Circle Jade
Posts: 109
For anyone that has been there, why is the BV considered a higher tier than OWV? By square footage OWV is bigger, but I am sure there is more to it.
cennis is offline  
Old Aug 30, 19, 4:50 am
  #1609  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: DFW
Programs: AA PLT/4MM, DL SM/1MM, HH ♦, Bonvoy LT PLT, Hyatt , AMEX Bus Plt
Posts: 563
Originally Posted by Roque Corona View Post
Nice bike tour of the island visible here: https://youtu.be/342sltC50PU
Seems like it will be quite some time before those island paths are shaded like the Conrad.
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Old Aug 30, 19, 5:17 am
  #1610  
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Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 22
Originally Posted by texmanufan View Post


Seems like it will be quite some time before those island paths are shaded like the Conrad.
Wife and I are here right now and the foliage by the main beach (Nava, Terra, the Rock) will need a lot of time. Some of the palms look like they're on the verge of dying - barely any fronds, very thin. The palms near the 600 villas and lobby are much thicker, but still not too fully grown. A lot of the smaller plants also seem to be getting decimated by insects - lots of holes in leafs and edges munched on. This is evident everywhere around the resort, including in the backyards of the beach villas. We saw crews spraying insecticide throughout the resort our first few days.

Along the same lines, the roads along the resort are a bit rough right now. I was told they are trying to add more sand to the paths to level them out, but a lot of recent rain has extended the project. Every time they lay down new sand, a downpour comes and washes it away. Not sure how they ever plan to permanently address that, because rain washing away sand will always be an issue.

If there's anything anybody wants to see or know let me know. I'll be here until September 4.
francophile, Moflav and alanslegal like this.
Another Getaway is offline  
Old Aug 30, 19, 5:40 am
  #1611  
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Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 22
Originally Posted by cennis View Post
For anyone that has been there, why is the BV considered a higher tier than OWV? By square footage OWV is bigger, but I am sure there is more to it.
We're staying in the BV, but my guess would be that the beach villa offers more space in the form of beach access. It's great being able to walk right off your pool deck to the beach and explore the resort. We didn't get the chance to stay in the OVW villa here, but we have done so in Bora Bora. That being said, if I were to come back here I would opt for the BV for sure.
Another Getaway is offline  
Old Aug 30, 19, 5:55 am
  #1612  
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 65
Originally Posted by Another Getaway View Post
We're staying in the BV, but my guess would be that the beach villa offers more space in the form of beach access. It's great being able to walk right off your pool deck to the beach and explore the resort. We didn't get the chance to stay in the OVW villa here, but we have done so in Bora Bora. That being said, if I were to come back here I would opt for the BV for sure.
Also staying here currently in a BV. Never done the OW experience, but traveling with two young children, so definitely prefer the BV. The direct beach access, while not included in the official square footage of the villa, does make it feel like the overall footprint is huge. With that said, the foliage around the villa is very limited. As I type this sitting in the bedroom next to the window, I can clearly see the covered deck area in the next door villa. I don't mind the lack of privacy as I'd prefer to have unobstructed views of the ocean, but I realize that's a personal preference.
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Old Aug 30, 19, 6:33 am
  #1613  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 27
Originally Posted by Another Getaway View Post
If there's anything anybody wants to see or know let me know. I'll be here until September 4.
If you've got time, could you please upload some photos of the view facing south from where the 100s OWVs are located?

Thanks for uploading the bike tour video by the way.
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Old Aug 30, 19, 6:55 am
  #1614  
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Join Date: Dec 2016
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More videos of the resort would be nice.
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Old Aug 30, 19, 7:04 am
  #1615  
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Originally Posted by flyerchatter View Post
If you've got time, could you please upload some photos of the view facing south from where the 100s OWVs are located?

Thanks for uploading the bike tour video by the way.
I'll work on this tomorrow. Suns going down now so won't have a chance today.
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Old Aug 31, 19, 6:05 am
  #1616  
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Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 22
Quick update concerning the lack of foliage near the main beach. Our concierge informed us that the resort is awaiting a shipment of about 5,000 (if I heard correctly) new fully grown trees to add to the resort. This is to address the lack of mature palms and other foliage around the resort, but which is mostly noticeable in this specific area.

You can see it the 0:19 mark in this video:
Another Getaway is offline  
Old Aug 31, 19, 6:06 am
  #1617  
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Join Date: Aug 2019
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Originally Posted by flyerchatter View Post
If you've got time, could you please upload some photos of the view facing south from where the 100s OWVs are located?

Thanks for uploading the bike tour video by the way.
​​​​​
There was no way for me to get photos of the view of these villas without actually getting into them, so I opted to use my drone to get some shots. These photos are taken from approximately the last southward facing OWV in the 100s. You can see the view is pretty nice with no obstructions. Very little boat traffic in this area from what I can tell.

Personally, I would opt for the south/lagoon facing villas in the 700s. Here you get a similar unobstructed view while also being able to see the resort and main lagoon to the right of your deck. Additionally, my wife and I did some snorkeling in this area today and it was fantastic. Coral seemed healthy and there were a lot of variety of fish. Overall I've been very happy with the snorkeling. We've even seen a few baby blacktips near the wedding pavilion and in this area, but only from the pathway and never while actually in the water.

Again if anyone needs any specific info or photos/videos let me know.







Another Getaway is offline  
Old Aug 31, 19, 6:17 am
  #1618  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 27
Originally Posted by Another Getaway View Post
​​​​​There was no way for me to get photos of the view of these villas without actually getting into them, so I opted to use my drone to get some shots.
Brilliant stuff. Thanks for the drone shots.

As suspected, it doesn't seem like the 100s Villas are occupied yet. There's no seat cushioning for the sun loungers or the swing in the gazebo. Looks like the two deck chairs in the pool haven't been installed either.
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Old Aug 31, 19, 4:45 pm
  #1619  
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 4
Beach Villa - any room recommendations?

Hello,

we have booked 5 nights for 2020 and are staying in a Beach Villa. Just wondering if anyone has stayed and could recommend a room number for us to select?

We’ve looked at the resort layout and prefer to look out to sea, I think these are 601-628.

Thanks!

Last edited by Shiraz Khan; Sep 1, 19 at 4:34 am
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Old Aug 31, 19, 10:21 pm
  #1620  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: LAS
Programs: Hilton Diamond, IHG Spire Ambassador, Radisson Gold, Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 3,003
Originally Posted by Shiraz Khan View Post
Hello,

we have booked 5 nights for July 2020 and are staying in a Beach Villa. Just wondering if anyone has stayed and could recommend a room number for us to select?

We’ve looked at the resort layout and prefer to look out to sea, I think these are 601-628.

Thanks!

Click on the Wiki at the top of the page and then scroll down to "Villa selection" and click the links for recommendations
jphripjah is offline  

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