Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi {MDV}

    Hide Wikipost
Old Sep 12, 19, 5:39 pm   -   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: MaldivesFreak
Wiki Link
Welcome to the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi Wiki!
Notes: All prices are in US Dollars and are exclusive of taxes unless specified (by ++)

EXTRA CHARGES - BE AWARE FOLKS!
• A compulsory Christmas Eve Gala Dinner supplement of US$488++ per adult and US$150++ per child applies for stays on 24 December 2019
• A compulsory New Year's Eve Dinner supplement of US$800++ per adult and US$150++ per child applies for stays on 31 December 2019
This lamb to the slaughter approach will force a couple to cough up an extra $3176.63, or a family of 4 (2 adults & 2 kids) $3915.83, if you want to celebrate Xmas and New Years here


The following section is a pisstake and a warning all rolled into one. Be prepared to be shocked and fleeced, all at the same time.....

The 'Price-Gouging, Dirty Trick & Sneaky Sneaky' Section
1. Yacht transfer: At a mere 22.8km from Male, Ithaafushi originally started charging $378++ per person return but then (and even before the resort opened) went up to $350++ per person PER WAY. That's practically double the price; $1724.80 all up for 2 passengers and almost as much as a single night's stay in a base villa!
• See the story of the resort not allowing guests' own transfer arrangements and leaving a valued Diamond member out in the cold just ONE DAY before check-in! Or read about it here on the forum
Then read probably the best rebuttal to this ridiculous and hypocritical policy

Note that the resort has backtracked from its previous policy (set way before they opened and which all other resorts have) of allowing third party transfers, since they figured they could fleece guests for even more money by literally forcing every guest to take their yacht for the return transfer, not letting third party boats dock nor give them tender from the lagoon boundary (like what happened to BLTraveler above)

• Then, in true Ithaafushi prices-all-over-the-place style, they changed the price knocking $50 off each way, but only for some guests. And we still don't know who this applies to and who it doesn't apply to

2. Should you be unlucky enough to have to pay for breakfast, watch out for the $35 you'll have to fork out for a single egg!
3. A 106,000 dollar bottle of wine: Click here for a picture of the wine menu. Keep reading the next couple of pages to see reactions
4. $135 shisha! Check out this post
5. $64 for a bowl of noodles. Click here for the menu
6. Nearly a thousand dollars for a couple to sit in a bamboo cage on a pole at the restaurant Terra with nothing to look at after sunset
7. Compulsory Christmas Eve Gala Dinner supplement (see above)
8. Compulsory New Year's Eve Dinner supplement (see above)
...and a few corporate-greed-bashing posts for good measure and entertainment value: Click here and here

Cost cutting:
• True Waldorf Service Cost Cutting: Check out
this post
• Yasmeen's Set Menu: Check out the many reductions in offerings between the old and new menus in
this post



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
Note: The $8pp/pn Bed Tax (previously levied by the Maldivian government) was abolished on Dec 1, 2014

Transfers To and From Resort
• How: 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)
Private yacht transfer: $350++ per person per way ($1724.80 return inclusive of taxes for 2 passengers). 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 more info
• Doing the dirty: Original quoted price was either $370++ or $378++ per person return but they thought that was too cheap and basically doubled it. Also note that the quoted transfer time on their website is 30 minutes but actual travel time is 40-50 minutes under normal sea conditions
• See this post for a detailed review of the yacht transfer (Courtesy of jphripjah)
• More sneaky business? Probably. Departure from Male to the resort was pretty much straight away but now we could wait up to 90 minutes to depart! Check out this post for a hypothesis


Alternative transfers to the WA and alternative destinations / resorts
• See this post for a success story in booking a very reasonably-priced transfer

• 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++


Resort Information / F&B / Spa / Activities
• WA Ithaafushi is made up of three islands (95% man-made)
• The resort has 11 restaurants / bars
• 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)
• Click here to visit the resort's listing on TripAdvisor
• Tennis courts: See this post
• For a 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 - Menus
• 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
• 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)

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 Champagne, sweet and savoury amenities
  • 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) --

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:

Reviews:
Review by goldelite8
Print Wikipost

Old Jul 24, 19, 12:00 pm
  #1726  
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: ZRH
Programs: M&M SEN (*G), HH Diamond
Posts: 2,267
Originally Posted by wekxbrainx View Post
Kindly note with respect for our guests’ privacy and security, third party/ own transfer is not permitted to enter the resort.
Who would have thought?
goliath is offline  
Old Jul 24, 19, 12:01 pm
  #1727  
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 72
Originally Posted by wekxbrainx View Post
I am going in August. Just got an email from the hotel:

Kindly note with respect for our guests’ privacy and security, third party/ own transfer is not permitted to enter the resort.

Did anyone arrange their own transportation would like to share? Or everyone paid the $350+23.2% per person per way? Really not looking forward to pay the $1700 round trip for 2 people.
👎
htran88 likes this.
KRUXED is offline  
Old Jul 24, 19, 6:12 pm
  #1728  
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 93

Email was from before the resort opening. What amenities on the transfer made it "unforgettable"... Diet Coke and A grape on a piece of melon impaled by a tooth pick.
WorldTravl is offline  
Old Jul 24, 19, 7:25 pm
  #1729  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: LAS
Programs: Hilton Diamond, IHG Spire Ambassador, Radisson Gold, Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 2,886
Originally Posted by MaldivesFreak View Post
We certainly do. We've never wasted a single cent on alcohol poison so lucky for us the only 2000% markups we have to worry about are the transfer fees to and from the resort.....oh, and the food, LOL.




Jeez. 2K for a room and they aren't even giving colour maps. WTH?
And very useful post, BTW!
It isn't even a good black and white map. It doesn't label individual villas. They are just unlabeled, color coded boxes on the map. Which makes no sense when they hand it to you in black and white. I lost my copy of the map but maybe someone can photograph it and post it. It's a surprisingly useless map for a large $1400 a night resort.
jphripjah is offline  
Old Jul 24, 19, 8:39 pm
  #1730  
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 3
Received the following upgrade offers via email for a 6 night points stay, December 5-11.

King Reef Villa with Pool : US$200+ 23.2% Tax and service charge per night

King Overwater Villa with Pool : US$400+ 23.2% Tax and service charge per night

Also received this info:

For the payment, we can either send you an online payment link or can settle upon arrival. Kindly bear in mind that the same cancellation policy will apply for the upgrade charges as well.

So can cancel up to 15 days prior to stay, at least for my stay.

Based on what I’ve read here, I was moderately concerned about privacy and views depending on which RV you get. Its our first time going to Maldives, went ahead and opted for OWV for the full experience and of course pay upon arrival.
giftcardrecipient is offline  
Old Jul 24, 19, 8:58 pm
  #1731  
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 1,508
Originally Posted by NightFury1 View Post
TD, how does this place compare to Bora Bora, I've read that you've been numerous times to BB and am interested in planning a trip myself after visiting this place.
BB is visually more stunning, main reason being mt otemanu.
The color of the water at BB is just like what you see in photos online.
Maldives is flat as a pancake all the way through.

BB is very busy with boat traffic compared to Maldives atoll.
Maldives is peaceful and quiet as you are quite literally in the middle of no where and 1 island = 1 resort.

Snorkeling at Maldives is easier bc of house reef. And the good ones are very rich in marine life. If you stay at Motu Piti Aau, you need a boat ride out
BB is not really known for its snorkeling - what you can see off your resort villa is not as exciting as what you can see on a good house reef at Maldives. Much better place elsewhere in FP to snorkel if you are after a good spot.

High-end Maldives resort (Cheval Blanc etc) is over-the-top luxury, like, very OTT; BB is shabby in comparison but by no means run-down.
In terms of local cuisine, both French/Asian combo and Maldivian dishes appeal to me.
Am never a person who is really into molecular gastronomy or one who goes all the way to Maldives to partake at japanese/italian or some foreign cuisine (given the chance, I would prefer to be just served Maldivian fish curry any and every day), so bc of this, BB wins out for me on food aspect due to the flexibility and availability of dining options outside of hotel (food truck all the way to Villa Mahana). Poisson Cru...
At both locales, seafood are very fresh and good, unsurprisingly.

More activities and nooks/corners to explore in BB compared to Maldives.
Not "trapped" on an island at BB
Maldives is a good place to visit to "zone out and do nothing", or for the serious divers/snorkellers, to do their thing.
Cynicor likes this.
gnomey is offline  
Old Jul 24, 19, 11:56 pm
  #1732  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 563
Originally Posted by goliath View Post
Who would have thought?
Of course, this wasn't meant to happen. Remember this is a U.S. company and liability issues arise if there happens to be injury or death as a result of something they don't take due diligence with. Lack of them supervising unauthorized/uncontracted agents is a liability.
scwam is offline  
Old Jul 25, 19, 1:09 am
  #1733  
Marriott Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Sydney, Australia
Programs: HHD, SPG LTG
Posts: 1,685
Originally Posted by wekxbrainx View Post
I am going in August. Just got an email from the hotel:
Kindly note with respect for our guests’ privacy and security, third party/ own transfer is not permitted to enter the resort.
I doubt they can enforce it though, I mean I didn't even see security personnel at the resort - sure 10 guys can come round a guest up but would they? And the Maldivian police are 40 minutes away, arriving by the time you've landed and enjoying a welcome drink.

Let alone the first billionaire guest who is booked into the private island. I bet they want to slum it on the Waldorf Astoria's yacht.
scwam, florens and MaldivesFreak like this.
alanslegal is offline  
Old Jul 25, 19, 4:02 am
  #1734  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 563
Originally Posted by alanslegal View Post
.....sure 10 guys can come round a guest up but would they? And the Maldivian police are 40 minutes away, arriving by the time you've landed and enjoying a welcome drink.
You're enjoying your first early evening cocktail watching the sunset fall into the horizon, and in the distance slowly appearing are several high-speed cigarette boats from AYTE, the Agency of Yacht Task Enforcement headed straight for you.
scwam is offline  
Old Jul 25, 19, 6:26 am
  #1735  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: SAN
Posts: 700
Originally Posted by giftcardrecipient View Post
Received the following upgrade offers via email for a 6 night points stay, December 5-11.

King Reef Villa with Pool : US$200+ 23.2% Tax and service charge per night

King Overwater Villa with Pool : US$400+ 23.2% Tax and service charge per night

Also received this info:

For the payment, we can either send you an online payment link or can settle upon arrival. Kindly bear in mind that the same cancellation policy will apply for the upgrade charges as well.

So can cancel up to 15 days prior to stay, at least for my stay.

Based on what I’ve read here, I was moderately concerned about privacy and views depending on which RV you get. Its our first time going to Maldives, went ahead and opted for OWV for the full experience and of course pay upon arrival.
The big privacy issues are related to the beach villas. The reef villas are very private. We spent 6 days in a garden and have been in a reef for 4 days. Once you are inside the gates or your reef villa you can not tell if it is reef or fully OW. I was glad we saved the money and only opted for the reef upgrade.

TD

PS..we saw about 20 dolphins from our room yesterday!






Traveler Dave is offline  
Old Jul 25, 19, 6:34 am
  #1736  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: SAN
Posts: 700
Originally Posted by alanslegal View Post
I doubt they can enforce it though, I mean I didn't even see security personnel at the resort - sure 10 guys can come round a guest up but would they? And the Maldivian police are 40 minutes away, arriving by the time you've landed and enjoying a welcome drink.

Let alone the first billionaire guest who is booked into the private island. I bet they want to slum it on the Waldorf Astoria's yacht.
We rented a boat the week before our WA stay. Our boat tender was allowed to dock where the WA yacht does with no issues.

TD
Traveler Dave is offline  
Old Jul 25, 19, 6:43 am
  #1737  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: SAN
Posts: 700
Turtle needs a new home. If you are here PM me and I’ll have the concierge bring it over tomorrow.

TD



Abidjan, pineapple_09 and llfoster like this.
Traveler Dave is offline  
Old Jul 25, 19, 7:09 am
  #1738  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 95
Originally Posted by gnomey View Post
The color of the water at BB is just like what you see in photos online.
Maldives is flat as a pancake all the way through.
Thank you for the comparison. Can you explain what this means though? As in the Maldives aren't as visually appealing as in their pictures? BB waters do look stunning to me.
NightFury1 is offline  
Old Jul 25, 19, 7:09 am
  #1739  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 17
Can someone please post up some images of the in-room dining menu?
flyerchatter is offline  
Old Jul 25, 19, 8:21 am
  #1740  
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 71
So what's the initial thoughts on this property vs St Regis Maldives for an award booking?
rp88 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread