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Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi {MDV}

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi {MDV}

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Old Sep 19, 22, 1:16 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: friedablass
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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. (some days cancellation period is 14 days check your reservation details for the exact applicable cancellation policy)
• 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
• This hotel is extremely popular. Rooms are released to be booked with points about 1 year in advance. It seems to be a partially manual process so it's not an exact science. After being released those rooms get booked within a matter of minutes. If you have specific dates you want you need to book them one at a time a year in advance, or risk booking last minute. Yes that makes it hard to use the 5th night free. You can book 5 individual nights and cancel them all to rebook getting the 5th night free, but there's only about a 50% chance the rooms go back into inventory so it's risky. There is no secret, just check Hilton.com all the time. If you don't want to do that, someone else will and they'll get the rooms.

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 2021 is $650++, 2020 is $600++ per person, and 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.
• Pricing for 2022 will increase to $730++ for adults and $365++ children 6-12, see website by clicking here.
• The resort offers the ability to redeem Hilton Honors points for your transfer, .strValue1=all&promoGroupList[1].strValue1=en_US&qt[0].type=fieldsearch&qt[0].name=panname_country_s&qt[0].value1=MDV&rc=24&sort=timeleft_asc]click here.
• 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.

Time
Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi time has been set one hour ahead of Male’ time to give an extra hour of daylight each day. For ease, set phone or Dhaka Sri Lanka time zone.

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
• Kids under 6 eat free when ordering from the dedicated kids menu (all restaurants except the adult only ones have kids menu; does not apply to in-room dining)
• Some restaurant menus are available in PDF format on the resort's website. Click here to visit the relevant page on their website
• Menus for most restaurants as of early October 2020: See this post
• 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. Note The afternoon delights have been removed and replaced with a bowl of nuts or crisps for example
  • 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
  • Free item from the kids menu for kids under 6 y.o. (staff are somewhat flexible on this age limit)
  • In-villa VIP welcome Champagne, sweet and savoury amenities, note this could be downgraded to a bottle of red wine.
  • [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. Note : The afternoon delights have been removed and replaced with a bowl of nuts or crisps for example
  • 50% special offer on selected beverages at Nava Beach Club from 22:00 to 23:30 (January 2021: Currently at Peacock Alley as Nava closes at 7pm due to Covid-19 service changes)

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
• Click here for hilton site and click here for Waldorf Maldives website

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 Jermyn
• 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 Jul 24, 21, 12:46 am
  #1111  
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Las Vegas, USA
Programs: HHonors Diamond, Platinum Ambassador, Hyatt Explorist, Marriott Platinum
Posts: 120
Originally Posted by Ramiraw View Post
they are like a mafia and will treat each guest in their own way. I stayed there for 8 nights on points and kept a 3k USD deposit with my Hilton aspire Amex card at check in for incidentals. half way through the stay, they contacted me and asked me to clear the bills and pay in advance. This is the first time I ever faced this at any hotel anywhere in the world, ever.

turns out, they did this on purpose so I would pay online using their online payment gateway called pomelo pay. It codes as utilities and supplies so I wouldn’t earn the points on my card as a Hilton spend. Made me lose almost 100k in points because of this and when I contacted them they said to wait and I have been waiting for months ever since. I contacted Amex and they said this was a serious issue. I also heard from others that they do this intentionally. Be careful. They are seriously crooks.
Well that's worrisome.....
silverm0623 is offline  
Old Jul 25, 21, 9:26 am
  #1112  
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: SAN
Posts: 1,201
Originally Posted by bangkokiscool View Post
I have an upcoming cash stay (total stay will be in the five figures). The resort is asking for 50% deposit, saying that they normally require a full 100% deposit but they're making an exception just for me of only 50% deposit. I'm really uncomfortable with this given the chances that someone in my family will test positive within 4 days of the flight. Trip insurance is useless since CDC has Maldives at Level 4 in case the resort decides to hang on to the deposit or takes months to refund it. Has anyone else encountered a demand for 50% deposit from WA? Is it unreasonable for me to insist on only paying a deposit when we check in?
They are also concerned you will cancel last minute. Thus the deposit. I would tell them no. With Covid changes still happening, and out of most people’s control, I would not be booking ANY travel that is not 100% refundable

TD
Traveler Dave is offline  
Old Jul 25, 21, 9:27 am
  #1113  
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 101
A couple of updates from the resort:

we stayed in 100’s series villas and they seemed to be heavily occupied.

Our host said the resort is currently at full capacity. Said they have a lot of visitors celebrating Eid at the resort.

Terra started a new menu yesterday. The new price is $345/pp

The price for the fixed menus at Li Long went up by about $20 from the last ones I saw posted.

I am here another day, let me know if anyone needs any questions answered.
Jamal06 is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 1:50 am
  #1114  
Accor Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: UK
Programs: BA Gold, IHG Diamond Amb, Marriott Titanium, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 620
I received an openhotel alert overnight that rooms were available for my selected dates, I was able to cancel my 4 night reservation and rebook for 5 nights on the phone (I was slightly concerned that the points for the cancellations didn't appear directly on my account, but the agent was able to rebook anyway) and was able to extend it to match my flight dates. Now I am just hoping that the Maldives comes off the UK's red list before my trip.

Thanks for the tips everyone!
Ikaz is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 8:15 am
  #1115  
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Programs: Marriott Bonvoy Platinum, Hilton Honors Diamond, Delta Gold
Posts: 2,941
Lots of good award availability opened for August and September and even some for October.
friedablass is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 10:56 am
  #1116  
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,242
Yep, I grabbed two nights in August. Awesome! I assume combining free nights with paid nights is OK with the resort? We are also planning on moving to the Park Hyatt after our WA stay, does anyone know if both are on the no-contact tracing list?
bangkokiscool is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 11:13 am
  #1117  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 218
Originally Posted by Jamal06 View Post
A couple of updates from the resort:

we stayed in 100’s series villas and they seemed to be heavily occupied.

Our host said the resort is currently at full capacity. Said they have a lot of visitors celebrating Eid at the resort.

Terra started a new menu yesterday. The new price is $345/pp

The price for the fixed menus at Li Long went up by about $20 from the last ones I saw posted.

I am here another day, let me know if anyone needs any questions answered.
i personally found the food at Terra the worst of all restaurants at the resort.
Ramiraw is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 11:14 am
  #1118  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 218
Originally Posted by Ikaz View Post
I received an openhotel alert overnight that rooms were available for my selected dates, I was able to cancel my 4 night reservation and rebook for 5 nights on the phone (I was slightly concerned that the points for the cancellations didn't appear directly on my account, but the agent was able to rebook anyway) and was able to extend it to match my flight dates. Now I am just hoping that the Maldives comes off the UK's red list before my trip.

Thanks for the tips everyone!
what’s an open hotel alert? Is that like a seat alert but for hotel awards?
Ramiraw is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 11:42 am
  #1119  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 218
Originally Posted by chris30269 View Post
ooooh yeah I meant you probably won't get BASE points for the yacht transfer, service charge, water sports, etc. But you will get 14x BONUS points for the credit card transaction at a Hilton with an Aspire for the entire transaction amount

The hotel has to buy the base points from Hilton corporate so they try to weasel out of that as much as possible. Amex has their own stash of points they hand out for credit card spending
glad I’m not the only one who noticed how the hotel tries to “weasel” their way out of not giving the points
Ramiraw is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 11:44 am
  #1120  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 218
Originally Posted by tex1721 View Post
Your personal concierge will either meet you at the dock at Male airport (pending schedule and availability etc.) or most likely at the WA dock when you arrive at the hotel. So basically assigned at check in. I never communicated with my PC prior to meeting him when we arrived at the hotel.

I did request a PC on my preference sheet, it was not granted. Preference sheet is a bit of hit and miss it seems, our was a miss. No requested pillows, had to remind our PC. Champagne was requested, got white wine instead. Same with Gluten Free dining which is a bigger issue. All was well after the first reminder though.
preference sheet is BS and they don’t even look at it. None of our requests were even considered. Although I thought it was pretty cool to have such a thing if it actually worked.
Ramiraw is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 12:10 pm
  #1121  
Accor Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: UK
Programs: BA Gold, IHG Diamond Amb, Marriott Titanium, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 620
Originally Posted by Ramiraw View Post
what’s an open hotel alert? Is that like a seat alert but for hotel awards?
A website that allows you to set alerts when the rooms that you want are available: https://openhotelalert.com/
I set up the alerts for a couple of room types and it worked a charm
Ikaz is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 12:42 pm
  #1122  
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 218
Originally Posted by Ikaz View Post
A website that allows you to set alerts when the rooms that you want are available: https://openhotelalert.com/
I set up the alerts for a couple of room types and it worked a charm

this is the coolest thing ever! Thank you so much it’s amazing
Ramiraw is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 6:36 pm
  #1123  
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: USA
Posts: 183
Originally Posted by Ikaz View Post
A website that allows you to set alerts when the rooms that you want are available: https://openhotelalert.com/
I set up the alerts for a couple of room types and it worked a charm
I've used them before for specific dates/weekends. What kind of parameters did you use for WA Maldives? Curious how I'll set it up for a 2023 trip.
ne0ven0m is offline  
Old Jul 27, 21, 11:49 pm
  #1124  
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Posts: 22
Planning our honeymoon in November, waldorf maldives or conrad? thanks!!!
xlamle is offline  
Old Jul 28, 21, 12:06 am
  #1125  
Accor Contributor Badge
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: UK
Programs: BA Gold, IHG Diamond Amb, Marriott Titanium, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 620
Originally Posted by ne0ven0m View Post
I've used them before for specific dates/weekends. What kind of parameters did you use for WA Maldives? Curious how I'll set it up for a 2023 trip.
If I remember correctly the WA releases 3 room types for standard points: "Two Queen Bedded Reef Villa with Pool" "King reef villa with pool" and another room type based on the feedback from this thread (King Overwater Villa with Pool?)
For 2023, it is worth looking at how they release rooms also, this year they have done it in different ways: Whole weeks released at the same time, making it easier to get 5 nights in one booking, or releasing one night at a time.
I was checking multiple times a day for rooms to be released on my required dates, and have seen availability go and disappear, typically fairly rapidly, especially if there are multiple nights released around each other.
Ikaz is offline  

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