Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi {MDV}

    Hide Wikipost
Old Oct 12, 19, 5:15 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: Traveler Dave
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 TO BE AWARE OF:
• 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


Charge 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
9. Ridiculously over-priced dinners - we're talking fifty bucks shy of $1000++ per person here (and some even more expensive than that) - at supposedly private and secluded locations. Click here for the list. Click here and here for comments and opinions
...and another corporate-greed-bashing post 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 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 - 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 Aug 9, 19, 11:25 pm
  #1876  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 54
I really wanted to stay at Waldorf but as family of 4(kids under 12) we will pay to much for official transfer.
I prefer to fly to Bora Bora and stay there cost will be the same for us even it's much longer trip from London.
Kids should have transfer for free ...
MaldivesFreak and BLTraveler like this.
Garimi is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 12:13 am
  #1877  
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 97
I am planning on staying at the WA next year. But with taking upgrade costs, 860$ speedboat transfers, overpriced food, and activities into consideration for 3 people. I think I will cancel my stay with WA, and instead stay with Lux* North Male Atoll for about 940$ a night. They get great reviews. And rooms are huge! -Large living area and bedroom -1.5 bathrooms -Upstairs area -reasonably priced food -CHEAPER transfer cost -Better lagoon -Reliable (in terms of service atm).
MaldivesFreak and BLTraveler like this.
WorldTravl is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 12:37 am
  #1878  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 3,357
Originally Posted by hoyt View Post
Sounds like they admitted changing their policy. They can't change their policy to a mandatory transfer after you make a reservation, and certainly not after the cancellation policy.
Exactly.

Originally Posted by hoyt View Post
I arrive within the cancellation window and am in the same situation as you. I will not back down on this.



Originally Posted by BLTraveler View Post
I intend on doing so when I return home next week. I flew down to the Maldives an evangelical fan of Hilton only to get kicked in the face when I got here. I’m feeling pretty stupid convincing all my friends and coworkers to stay with Hilton..
Yup, and kicking a Diamond member in the face. That's disgusting. Make them pay!


Originally Posted by iluvdoco View Post
A couple new (and very negative) reviews of the WA are up on TripAdvisor.
Yeah, we know who Michael M is. They are no doubt going to get more once @BLTraveler gets behind the keyboard, LOL.
It's interesting as at the moment there are no 4s, only 15 5s and 5 3s or less. And of the 15 that are 5s, 6 are from accounts that are new with only 1 contribution.
BLTraveler likes this.
MaldivesFreak is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 12:44 am
  #1879  
Marriott Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Sydney, Australia
Programs: HHD, SPG LTG
Posts: 1,696
Another really negative review on TA by member named feras titled "below our expecation and terrible resort".
@Traveler Dave, we had the Ithaafushi Princess inbound and left with Nirvana, the latter was definitely a downgrade imo.
alanslegal is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 1:04 am
  #1880  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: SAN
Posts: 717
Originally Posted by Garimi View Post
I really wanted to stay at Waldorf but as family of 4(kids under 12) we will pay to much for official transfer.
I prefer to fly to Bora Bora and stay there cost will be the same for us even it's much longer trip from London.
Kids should have transfer for free ...
Check with the hotel. We were quoted a discounted rate for our 10 year old

TD
Traveler Dave is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 1:09 am
  #1881  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 3,357
Originally Posted by gav0106 View Post
I think it is very telling that management is quick to respond to positive reviews on Trip Advisor, but seem to ignore the negative ones.
On average they are taking at least 2, sometimes up to 5 or 6 days to reply to reviews, both positive and negative, with one exception - the Chinese review. It looks like it took a week or more to reply to that one. No doubt they will respond to the latest 2 negative reviews in a day or two.

S**t, I can't believe I'm defending them again. MF slaps himself. Well, at least I'm not biased. Credit is given where it's due and taking the pees is done when it's needed.

Last edited by MaldivesFreak; Aug 10, 19 at 3:53 pm Reason: Typo
MaldivesFreak is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 1:19 am
  #1882  
Hilton 25+ BadgeMarriott 25+ Badge
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Homeless
Programs: M&M SEN; AC SE100k; Qatar Plat; HH Dia; SPG AMB100; Hyatt Globalist; Fairmont Plat
Posts: 2,228
Originally Posted by NYC_1 View Post
One aspect I’m curious about is whether the full overwater villa is “worth” the extra cost. Our reef villa is approximately 1/2 over water as it is, including our deck. Only the front 12 feet of the villa is on land.
What's your takeaway?
escape4 is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 1:23 am
  #1883  
Hilton 25+ BadgeMarriott 25+ Badge
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Homeless
Programs: M&M SEN; AC SE100k; Qatar Plat; HH Dia; SPG AMB100; Hyatt Globalist; Fairmont Plat
Posts: 2,228
Regarding the service issues, I think it's entirely appropriate for anybody to bring them up and to comment on them. That's how they will improve. Not that it's an excuse, but I would also add that going to a resort like this shortly after it opens, some service issues should have been expected, and if someone expected a flawless stay then it's a setup for disappointment. If I keep reading service breakdowns one year after opening then I will be worried, but for now in my book the hotel is not a well oiled machine yet, perhaps it's more defective than some guests would have hoped for, but I am not convinced it's a rock solid reason to discard the resort altogether unless you have a stay coming up in a couple of weeks. I guess everyone will make their own decisions based on their priorities.
Traveler Dave likes this.
escape4 is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 2:36 am
  #1884  
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 54
Originally Posted by Traveler Dave View Post


Check with the hotel. We were quoted a discounted rate for our 10 year old

TD
yes 50% price of adult so traveling 2+2 we should pay like for 3 adults ....its just boat trasfer flight to rangali its much cheaper
Traveler Dave likes this.
Garimi is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 6:55 am
  #1885  
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 1
Loving WA Maldives!

Been to Conrad Rangali and I must say it looks small in comparison to WA Maldives. Loving the island life in a designer luxe, breathtakingly gorgeous, spacious piece of heaven. Check out my instagram for photo updates!
wekxbrainx likes this.
MilesinHeaven is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 7:04 am
  #1886  
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Abidjan
Programs: OW Emerald - HH Diamond
Posts: 3,037
This is funny.
Abidjan is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 8:10 am
  #1887  
 
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 44
Here's what I'm hoping will happen with the whole transfer fiasco. With enough guest push back and negative reviews (hopefully from some big name/influential vloggers as well), they will have to revisit the cost of the transfer and/or allowing 3rd party transfers. I'd be happy with a tiered transfer where you can choose between speedboat or yacht at different price points. They have a few options to still make a profit and not piss people off like they are now.
Traveler Dave likes this.
marcmsj is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 9:23 am
  #1888  
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: So Cal
Posts: 524
Originally Posted by Traveler Dave View Post


Just my opinion, but having stayed there for 10 days I would say you made a bad call. The hard and soft product are amazing. Perfect? No. I have been to several 5* resorts. None have been perfect.

TD
I'm going to save my points for a return trip to Conrad BB. Having hit both Rangali and Conrad BB, I appreciate what Bora Bora has to offer, as well as the ability to self cater my party supplies. Shame though it is much easier to get to the Maldives from LAX than it is to PPT.
brodielayne is offline  
Old Aug 10, 19, 11:43 am
  #1889  
Hilton Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: In the air
Programs: BA Gold, Marriott Amb, Hilton Diamond, AMEX Plat
Posts: 6,300
Originally Posted by brodielayne View Post
Shame though it is much easier to get to the Maldives from LAX than it is to PPT.
Eh?
EuropeanPete is online now  
Old Aug 10, 19, 12:07 pm
  #1890  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: SAN
Posts: 717
Originally Posted by EuropeanPete View Post
Eh?
Originally Posted by brodielayne View Post
I'm going to save my points for a return trip to Conrad BB. Having hit both Rangali and Conrad BB, I appreciate what Bora Bora has to offer, as well as the ability to self cater my party supplies. Shame though it is much easier to get to the Maldives from LAX than it is to PPT.
My wife actually likes BB better than Maldives for some of that same reasons you mention. As they say, happy wife happy life, so going back to Conrad BB next Summer. 2021 we will be back to the WA....hopefully. I wish they would build a WA in BB!

I do do agree the 8 hour flight from LAX-PPT and a puddle jumper to BOB is much better than 20+ air to MLE.

TD
Traveler Dave is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread