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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)




Print Wikipost

Old Aug 31, 19, 10:42 pm
  #1621  
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 31
Wife and me are currently at BV #623 . It's very private - both sides have a bamboo fence, most of which is visible due to short foliage yet gives privacy from one adjacent villa. On the other side is a water treatment facility of some sort, luckily no weird smells or sounds.

The experience in the last 24 hours has been great so far! Earlier concerns on this thread have almost been eliminated:
- the buggies come to a stop if they see an oncoming person on a bike
- butter is delivered on the table during breakfast at Tasting Table without asking
- we were picked up by the WA branded yacht which is pretty impressive and we did enjoy our journey. We've seen 1 other yacht come in a couple of times which looked even bigger and grander but did not have the WA signs on it.
- our personal concierge gave us a small Samsung phone to place calls to him. We have called him thrice and every time he has answered - always courteous and very helpful. He meets us at every dining location to check on how we're doing, and sends housekeeping while we're away.

Overall, both the wife and I are impressed with everything. The photos online do not do justice to the hard product.

We've tried the Peacock Alley, Li Long and Tasting Table so far. We have a few more dining locations planned and excursions for the next few days.
rish is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 1:36 am
  #1622  
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 4
Thanks!

Originally Posted by jphripjah View Post
Click on the Wiki at the top of the page and then scroll down to "Villa selection" and click the links for recommendations
Shiraz Khan is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 1:45 am
  #1623  
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 4
Thanks!

Thanks! This is really helpful, thank you. We have looked at the resort plan and were thinking about 619 or 621. We prefer facing out to sea rather than the lagoon. I think yours does too, how is this or would you have picked a lagoon view?

Finally, we noticed some rocks which I am assuming act as water breakers, does this affect your view/experience? Would advise to try and pick a BV away from this?
Shiraz Khan is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 2:35 am
  #1624  
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Programs: Aegean Airlines Gold, British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Malaysian
Posts: 1,591
Deleted
gallagher is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 4:00 am
  #1625  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 4
Hi, really liked your YouTube vids! Could I ask what is the house reef/ snorkelling like now? I saw some of th earlier reports it would be interested in an update?

Tomh65 is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 5:53 am
  #1626  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 22
Working on getting some GoPro video of our snorkeling uploaded too. So far I think its been great. Right behind our villa is pretty decent snorkeling,but by the dive center (near the 700 OVWs) it's even better.
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Another Getaway is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 8:06 am
  #1627  
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 55
Any consensus yet on which OWV's are the best? It seems like they would be mostly the same.
marcmsj is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 8:08 am
  #1628  
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Posts: 4
Originally Posted by Another Getaway View Post
Working on getting some GoPro video of our snorkeling uploaded too. So far I think its been great. Right behind our villa is pretty decent snorkeling,but by the dive center (near the 700 OVWs) it's even better.
cheers for the update. Look forward to the new vids
Tomh65 is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 8:24 am
  #1629  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Programs: BAEC Gold
Posts: 751
Apologies if this is not the correct place to ask the following question.

I will be making my first visit to the Maldives late May 2020 and I intend to use points (like most here I think) for a 5 night stay. I’ve had my eyes on Rangali for a few years but once I learned about this new property I have been glued to every post in this thread and also read everyone on the Rangali thread too.

So my question (unsurprisingly) is which resort should I choose?

I realise things will cost me a bit more here and I have that extortionate boat trip to pay for, so cost wise I think I’ll spend $5000 here as opposed to $3500 at Rangali. We love to Snorkel but are also quite activity focused so might look at a couple of excursions.

Overall, and especially after reading of some mixed reviews here I was 95% back in the Rangali camp. A potnetion $1500 cash saving and 100,000 points for starters. More my kind of dining (love the sound of beach BBQ’s) better vegetation and a trip on a place certainly floats my boat more than yacht!

But then, comparing when booking it dawned on me what a massive extra value I am getting from my points when staying here. For around a 25% increase in points spend I am getting a 300% increase in the value of the accommodation if I was to pay with cash.

I’d really be interested in anything else folk on this board think I should consider or find useful in making my decision.

I’d also be interested to know if you think my anticipated spend of $3500 or $5000 in sensible. I’d be thinking this would cover transfers, dinner for 4 or 5 evenings with wine and a few drinks through the day and an excursion or two.

I’m Hilton Diamond so will have a decent breakfast so will prob skip lunch. Are diamond benefits noticeably better at either resort?
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kingcole974 is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 4:48 pm
  #1630  
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Posts: 1
Hi guys, what’s the yacht cost for kids? On the website it only shows $350++ for adults
theRock is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 4:51 pm
  #1631  
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 31
Originally Posted by Shiraz Khan View Post
Thanks! This is really helpful, thank you. We have looked at the resort plan and were thinking about 619 or 621. We prefer facing out to sea rather than the lagoon. I think yours does too, how is this or would you have picked a lagoon view?

Finally, we noticed some rocks which I am assuming act as water breakers, does this affect your view/experience? Would advise to try and pick a BV away from this?
Yes, #623 is ocean facing. Me and the wife both wouldn't actually mind the lagoon view. The ocean colors are much better there and the lighting is nice. You can see Male lights from the 600 series of beach villas. So in comparison, we'd prefer lagoon facing and see the nice subdued lights of the resort rather than the white glow in the sky above Male.

The water breakers are not a deterrent to the view at all. You cannot see it form the villa. Maybe at some angles from the deck but it's a small part of your view.
rish is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 4:56 pm
  #1632  
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 31
Originally Posted by Tomh65 View Post
Hi, really liked your YouTube vids! Could I ask what is the house reef/ snorkelling like now? I saw some of th earlier reports it would be interested in an update?

Wife and I did house reef snorkeling ourselves. We had asked our concierge to schedule house reef snorkeling with the activity center. He asked if we'd be comfortable doing it on our own. We were comfortable so he simply showed us the locations where to and we went on our own. There is almost no sea life for the first 10 feet or so. When the corals do start, there is tonnes of sea life. We really enjoyed our first experience. Areas on both sides of the wedding pavilion and behind it are good spots. Today, we'll be trying a different location on the lagoon.
rish is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 6:11 pm
  #1633  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Programs: Hilton
Posts: 11
Originally Posted by rish View Post
Wife and I did house reef snorkeling ourselves. We had asked our concierge to schedule house reef snorkeling with the activity center. He asked if we'd be comfortable doing it on our own. We were comfortable so he simply showed us the locations where to and we went on our own. There is almost no sea life for the first 10 feet or so. When the corals do start, there is tonnes of sea life. We really enjoyed our first experience. Areas on both sides of the wedding pavilion and behind it are good spots. Today, we'll be trying a different location on the lagoon.

Where are the house reef locations? Thanks.
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Ming Chang is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 6:30 pm
  #1634  
Hyatt Contributor BadgeMarriott Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Sydney, Australia
Programs: HHD, SPG LTG
Posts: 1,814
Originally Posted by kingcole974 View Post
So my question (unsurprisingly) is which resort should I choose?
There are some comparisons upthread, and also this separate thread WA Maldives vs Conrad vs Conrad Bora Bora
alanslegal is offline  
Old Sep 1, 19, 8:54 pm
  #1635  
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 58
Originally Posted by Scotland View Post
Same here, I called up with the cert last night and they said, no! Oh well!
Just a heads up for anyone looking for points availability. Over the weekend a lot of points availability opened in March 2020. I was able to get the night of Friday, March 27 which I needed to complete my award stay.




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j.cerda is offline  

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