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Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi {MDV}

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi {MDV}

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Old Jul 16, 19, 1:36 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: MaldivesFreak
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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 ++)

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


There is currently not a lot of solid information on this resort, its prices, room types and amenities. More information will be added bit by bit as it becomes available

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 new 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: WA Ithaafushi is located in South Malι Atoll, southwest of Velana International Airport [MLE] (also known as Malι International Airport, previously known as Ibrahim Nasir International Airport)
• Private yacht transfer (50 mins from Malι): $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
Note: Original quoted price was $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 50 minutes
See this post for a detailed review of the yacht transfer (Courtesy of jphripjah)

• 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
• The kids club (one of the biggest in the Maldives) is for children between 4 to 11 years
• Click here to visit the resort's website for more information
• Click here to visit the resort's listing on TripAdvisor
• Tennis courts: See this post
Resort Information - Menus
• Yasmeen - Set Menu B

Miscellaneous Information
• Villa pool depth: See this post
• Best snorkelling spots: See 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


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


Prices - Accommodation:

***** 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 - Oct 2019 *****
Reef Villa $200++
OWV $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)

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


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: TBA
• 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)
• IVD(in villa dining) Link to post (Courtesy of Stivelio)
• 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)
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Old Jun 3, 19, 11:52 pm
  #916  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: SAN
Posts: 553
Originally Posted by alanslegal View Post
From reviewing the videos, to me the restaurants look underwhelming. Yasmeen looks artificial, Li Long looks like a glorified restaurant and Terra, the idea is there but it looks sparse and not as private / romantic / intimate.
I believe the overall experience at WA will be amazing! Counting the days til we get there. But have to agree about the restaurant opinions above.

Just coming back from two days at Disneyland, Yasmeen looks like a restaurant they would have. Fake, with no real “essence” of the actual thing. I predict the food will be great.

One can only hope they remove/rethink the wicker park bench from Terra. At, what will more than likely be a $250++ PP dinner, they need to give you a proper place to sit for a couple hours. Or they can claim the worlds most expensive picnic meal.

TD
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Old Jun 4, 19, 1:55 am
  #917  
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Sydney, Australia
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Originally Posted by escape4 View Post
Spot on. Private beach dinner and Decanter dinner at St.Regis will be hard to beat. However for an entry level room there is no comparison possible - WA is worlds apart from the garden villa at St.Regis. Comparing overwater villas might be more debatable but I think WA will win out as well. Vegetation is a work in progress.
Or another comparison, the WA OWV product will beat any standard OWV in Bora Bora. Which OWV has a 10m x 4m plunge pool, floating day bed, in-pool sun loungers, another separate day bed, dining table and chairs! If I get sick of the other half, we can occupy opposite ends of the pool.

Originally Posted by Traveler Dave View Post


I believe the overall experience at WA will be amazing! Counting the days til we get there. But have to agree about the restaurant opinions above.

Just coming back from two days at Disneyland, Yasmeen looks like a restaurant they would have. Fake, with no real “essence” of the actual thing. I predict the food will be great.

One can only hope they remove/rethink the wicker park bench from Terra. At, what will more than likely be a $250++ PP dinner, they need to give you a proper place to sit for a couple hours. Or they can claim the worlds most expensive picnic meal.

TD
We are counting down the days too! It can be too easy to judge from a photo but once you are there I am sure everything will change >100% in a better way when you have everything aligned. Imagine having positive thoughts, being in holiday mood, glorious sun, soft sands between your toes, the delicious smells, decadent decoration, luxurious settings, relaxing villas and excellent hospitality .... this can only lead to one thing, amazing. My anticipation to stay at this hotel is incredibly high so let's hope they live up to it!
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Old Jun 4, 19, 2:32 am
  #918  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: BHX
Programs: BA GGL, Marriott Plat, SPG Plat, HH Diamond, Accor Plat, Cafe Nero Loyalty Card
Posts: 6,295
4 tables outside at the Chinese Restaurant.
Working there is going to be like Groundhog Day for the staff.

"Can we book one of those tables?"
"Fully booked tonight, unfortunately Sir/Madam. We can accommodate you inside."
"Hard pass."

Repeat ad infinitum.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 3:23 am
  #919  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Programs: Delta Gold Medallion, AMEX Skymiles Plat, HH Diamond, Marriott Platinum, Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 152
Talking

Originally Posted by alanslegal View Post
Or another comparison, the WA OWV product will beat any standard OWV in Bora Bora. Which OWV has a 10m x 4m plunge pool, floating day bed, in-pool sun loungers, another separate day bed, dining table and chairs! If I get sick of the other half, we can occupy opposite ends of the pool.



We are counting down the days too! It can be too easy to judge from a photo but once you are there I am sure everything will change >100% in a better way when you have everything aligned. Imagine having positive thoughts, being in holiday mood, glorious sun, soft sands between your toes, the delicious smells, decadent decoration, luxurious settings, relaxing villas and excellent hospitality .... this can only lead to one thing, amazing. My anticipation to stay at this hotel is incredibly high so let's hope they live up to it!
OK, now I am officially part of the WA Maldives obsessed group who counts down days and checks this thread 10 times a day looking for any additional info, videos and pics.

Here is some additional info for those interested in transfers from the airport to the resort.

Atolltransfer.com is charging $580 round trip for a speedboat that holds a maximum of 6 passengers. The reviews on this company are mostly good but I am still debating the cost/benefit of a beautiful yacht provided by the resort vs a small speedboat with a potentially bumpy ride. According to the reviews, some of the boats provide plastic bags for seasickness. Yep, the internal debate of convenience vs cost savings ($1000) which could buy you a few dinners at the resort - if you are able to eat after a speedboat ride
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Old Jun 4, 19, 3:45 am
  #920  
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: HKG
Programs: MPC, KF, BAEC // SPG, WoH, Honors
Posts: 1,057
What's the latest in terms of breakfast benefits for Golds at this property? Has anyone with a booking been in touch with the hotel to confirm?
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Old Jun 4, 19, 6:46 am
  #921  
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 553
Originally Posted by Kilian Zoll View Post
What's the latest in terms of breakfast benefits for Golds at this property? Has anyone with a booking been in touch with the hotel to confirm?
There is no reason as far as I can see based on the T&C especially for this brand to be exempt from free breakfast. There was also nothing I could remember last time I checked the T&C, member benefits comparison chart, etc that states breakfast is up to the property either. That breakfast there will be running around like an unrestrained kid at $100 for parents with 1 child.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 7:11 am
  #922  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 2,543
Do we know if all the restaurants will be open when the resort opens to the public?
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Old Jun 4, 19, 7:24 am
  #923  
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Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Homeless
Programs: M&M SEN; AC SE100k; Qatar Plat; HH Dia; SPG AMB100; Hyatt Globalist; Fairmont Plat
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Originally Posted by alanslegal View Post
Or another comparison, the WA OWV product will beat any standard OWV in Bora Bora. Which OWV has a 10m x 4m plunge pool, floating day bed, in-pool sun loungers, another separate day bed, dining table and chairs! If I get sick of the other half, we can occupy opposite ends of the pool.
WA Maldives hardware will exceed Bora Bora hardware at any BB hotel that I know of, by a greater margin than it will exceed StR Maldives. The luxury level in the Maldives is simply higher than in BB generally speaking. Soft product remains to be seen but for the hard product I am quite sure that WA Maldives will crush Conrad BB or any other option in BB such as StR, IC, Sofitel, or FS.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 8:00 am
  #924  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: LAS
Programs: Hilton Diamond, IHG Spire Ambassador, Radisson Gold, Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 2,837
I'm a Diamond member booked there in early July. Got this email from Adam Areef (formerly of CMRI) today:

Greetings from Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi, an escape for unforgettable experiences.



Thank you for your loyalty towards Hilton Portfolio of brands and we are honored that you have chosen to redeem your stay with us. It will be an absolute pleasure to welcome you to our beautiful island.



We are reaching out to you in advance to make necessary arrangements for your island transfers. We kindly request for your arrival and departure flight details in order for us to arrange the transfers. Also please advise us full name of your travel companion to update your reservation.



Delighted to inform you that we have luxury yacht transfers for all our guests and is a 30 minute ride from Velana International airport which can be arranged 24/7 according to your international flight arrival time. Transfer fee is at US$350+23.2% Tax and service charge per adult per way.



Also we would like take this opportunity to highlight the Hilton Honors benefits exclusively for Diamond members:



§ Complimentary breakfast at our all day dining restaurant, Tasting Table.

§ In-villa VIP welcome Champagne, sweet and savoury amenities

§ With a selected 60-minute massage, enjoy a complimentary additional 30-minute at Waldorf Astoria Spa

§ Complimentary daily afternoon delights 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.



Due to the very special nature of the accommodations at our resort we are exempted from complimentary villa upgrade policy.



Please be advised that member benefits are applicable for the member and one more guest sharing the same villa.



To make your stay with us even more special, we recommend upgrading your villa to a higher category for your upcoming stay, either for entire stay or partial stay. Please do let us if you are interested in a villa upgrade to check the availability and prices.



Should you require any further assistance, feel free to contact us.



Looking forward to hearing from you.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 8:08 am
  #925  
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Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Homeless
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Originally Posted by jphripjah View Post
§ Complimentary daily afternoon delights 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.
Due to the very special nature of the accommodations at our resort we are exempted from complimentary villa upgrade policy.
Thanks for sharing. Happy hour is a significant plus, the lack of upgrades is a disappointment although nothing prevents them from promising nothing at all but upgrading nonetheless. I would be surprised if nobody gets upgrades when the property has availability.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 8:18 am
  #926  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: BHX
Programs: BA GGL, Marriott Plat, SPG Plat, HH Diamond, Accor Plat, Cafe Nero Loyalty Card
Posts: 6,295
Originally Posted by escape4 View Post
Thanks for sharing. Happy hour is a significant plus, the lack of upgrades is a disappointment although nothing prevents them from promising nothing at all but upgrading nonetheless. I would be surprised if nobody gets upgrades when the property has availability.
I'm no expert on these properties, but given a lot of HIlton and Conrad properties that SHOULD have to upgrade Diamond guests don't seem to bother, I doubt the WA Maldives - who don't have to - will bother.

I'd imagine heavy spending returning guests may well get upgrades, but a Diamond on their first trip? I'd say the chances are close to zero unless occupancy is oversold in the beach villas.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 8:34 am
  #927  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: SAN
Posts: 553
Originally Posted by Wozza2404 View Post
I'm no expert on these properties, but given a lot of HIlton and Conrad properties that SHOULD have to upgrade Diamond guests don't seem to bother, I doubt the WA Maldives - who don't have to - will bother. I'd imagine heavy spending returning guests may well get upgrades, but a Diamond on their first trip? I'd say the chances are close to zero unless occupancy is oversold in the beach villas.
Conrad BB is also exempt . They upgrade all the time.

“Due to the very special nature of the accommodations at Conrad Bora Bora, we are unable to offer upgraded accommodations”

I agree in the future, once they get established, upgrades may be harder to come by. But I predict at opening, if there is availability, Diamonds should get upgraded. That is a zero hotel cost benefit that will go a long way with Hilton loyalists.

TD
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Old Jun 4, 19, 8:39 am
  #928  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: BHX
Programs: BA GGL, Marriott Plat, SPG Plat, HH Diamond, Accor Plat, Cafe Nero Loyalty Card
Posts: 6,295
Originally Posted by Traveler Dave View Post

I agree in the future, once they get established, upgrades may be harder to come by. But I predict at opening, if there is availability, Diamonds should get upgraded. That is a zero hotel cost benefit that will go a long way with Hilton loyalists.
That's actually a very fair point. Yeah if you're there in 2019 as they find their feet then perhaps the chances are higher. Especially if they're looking to keep people moving through their more expensive rooms so housekeeping, etc. get experience cleaning, maintaining, etc.

That being said, I'm not expecting anything when I go in November (nor am I from the Conrad). If I want a Reef Villa (and I think I do), I'll pay for it to make sure I get it.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 8:48 am
  #929  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: LAS
Programs: Hilton Diamond, IHG Spire Ambassador, Radisson Gold, Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 2,837
Originally Posted by escape4 View Post
Thanks for sharing. Happy hour is a significant plus, the lack of upgrades is a disappointment although nothing prevents them from promising nothing at all but upgrading nonetheless. I would be surprised if nobody gets upgrades when the property has availability.
Yeah, but the upgrade exemption was assumed/expected, like at CMRI.

Breakfast only being offered in one restaurant, the least luxurious all day dining restaurant, is a minor disappointment I guess.

The Happy Hour was a pleasant surprise, as I had heard nothing about that before getting this email. I assume the happy hour is extended to Golds also, but it would be good if someone else can confirm that.
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Old Jun 4, 19, 9:36 am
  #930  
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 4
Originally Posted by jphripjah View Post
The Happy Hour was a pleasant surprise, as I had heard nothing about that before getting this email. I assume the happy hour is extended to Golds also, but it would be good if someone else can confirm that.
FT won't let me post URLs - see hiltonhonors3.hilton.com/en/explore/benefits/maldives.html

This list has been published by Hilton for some time. Same benefits for Golds, except for the extra 30 mins massage. Note that this list doesn't cover the free breakfast as that's not Maldives-specific, but there's nothing to suggest it won't apply.
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