W Maldives [Master Thread]

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Post #515 is an EXTENSIVE review w/ pics.

Food menus: Kitchen, In-Room Dining, Fire, Fish
Prices may change (sometimes substantially) so not necessarily up to date.

Excursions and activities pricing
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Old Mar 19, 19, 7:29 pm
  #571  
 
Join Date: May 2018
Posts: 15
Where would the better side of the reef be?
kjc313 is offline  
Old Mar 20, 19, 3:31 am
  #572  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: HEL, SIN, LON
Posts: 115
Originally Posted by escapefromphl View Post
Do you know if it's possible to book cash rates without breakfast, one would assume if not that breakfast would have to be included on all award stays?
I don't know of any reason why it would have to be included then. And sorry no idea.
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Old Mar 20, 19, 3:40 am
  #573  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: HEL, SIN, LON
Posts: 115
Originally Posted by kjc313 View Post
Where would the better side of the reef be?
I put better in quotation marks because both sides are great. The side of villas 115-128 has calmer sea and most of the turtles hang out on that side. But while we were there, they were conditioning the beach on that side by sucking sand from the bottom and raising it to the beach, which caused the water to have much worse visibility near the restaurant specially. I'm sure that's a temporary thing.
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Old Mar 20, 19, 9:33 am
  #574  
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Join Date: Aug 2005
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Programs: Delta Diamond, Bonvoy something good; sometimes other things too
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Originally Posted by escapefromphl View Post
Do you know if it's possible to book cash rates without breakfast, one would assume if not that breakfast would have to be included on all award stays?
You might have had some success making that argument with SPG, though I'm not sure if it would have technically been SPG policy (though there was always much debate about this topic around airport transfers included for suites at the Grosvenor House). But these days? Ha.
bgriff is offline  
Old Mar 22, 19, 3:21 pm
  #575  
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: LAX
Programs: AA LT PLT
Posts: 170
Originally Posted by kjc313 View Post
Where would the better side of the reef be?
When you pick up your snorkeling gear from the dive shop, they'll show you a map and tell you where the best snorkeling is. There are markers in the water as well, but we found the reef to be great from the welcome jetty all the way around past the spa. We saw the turtles between the spa and the set of orange buoys further from the welcome jetty. (So if you start between the welcome jetty and the first set of buoys and then continue toward the spa, between the spa and the final set of buoys is where we saw turtles.)

They will not tell you that there is also great snorkeling out beyond the super-presidential villa at the end of the OWVs. The presidential palace has two staircases down to the water and out and to the right of there (as you are looking at the water from a staircase), there is also good snorkeling. (They don't tell you this because, well, it kinda impacts the privacy of the villas to have masses snorkeling in front of them.) If you time it right, you can snorkel out in this area when the water is just high enough so that you can float above the coral and be insanely close to fish. This is also true near the spa and elsewhere, but the currents were not as strong out in front of the presidential suite.

There is also a "garden reef" down a staircase from the public walkway about 2/3 of the way down the OWV walkway. I'm sure they can tell you how to get to it from the dive shop, but it's easily accessible...just be sure to go when the tide is high enough.
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Old Mar 22, 19, 3:25 pm
  #576  
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: LAX
Programs: AA LT PLT
Posts: 170
Originally Posted by _fly_ View Post
- what was annoying was that the service was bit of a mess. I think we got the correct restaurant bill once or twice during the whole week! We had a confirmed reservation to Fire restaurant for my wife’s birthday evening but nobody remembered to tell us that Fire was closed that evening. I guess I should have studied the restaurant schedule myself.
Strange. I was there at the same time and had no problems at all with the checks.

I think others have suggested that you ask the front desk for the weekly schedule of what restaurant is open when. We did that and it helped meal planning tremendously.

Also, on the second-to-last night of our stay, the entire format at Fire changed and the portions became much more generous and enjoyable. Main courses now come with a whole slew of side dishes, all presented on a massive wooden plank.
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Old Mar 25, 19, 7:34 pm
  #577  
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 35
W Maldives is truly a WOW

W Retreat & Spa Maldives

Map| 3 Reviews | 100% Recommended

W Retreat & Spa Maldives

Fesdu Island Fesdu Island, MV

W Maldives is truly a WOW (28 Photos)

W Retreat & Spa Maldives

OVERALL VIBE:

This is a secluded island where only the W Maldives lives.  It is romantic, breathtaking, stunning and has a laid back, small island feel.  This is all at the same time as melodic beats are playing in the background at the pool and bars.  There is a DJ playing sometimes at the pool or at night at the SIP bar over the water until 11pm.  The music while we were here was fun: oscillating between smooth and melodic to more upbeat later at night.  It was never too much or overbearing, but really added to the amazing vibe of the hotel and island.

The W mantra is "Whatever, whenever" and they really do try to live up to that.  The customer service from the staff is impeccable.  They will literally do whatever you ask of them.  You want them to design you a dish of the menu, yes, they will.  You want them to cut off the heads of your prawns, yes, they will.  You want to go to dinner a little later than you planned for, no problem, you can do it.  It is whatever you want, whenever you want it.  This hotel will make me consider staying at other W's in the future to see if the service is the same. One thing that must be said, is that there is AMAZING ambient lighting all over the island: at your room, the pool, the bars....when the lights go down, this light is just magical.  And the sunsets are just some of the best I have ever seen! The sand on the sunset side of the beach is so white, with the crystal light blue water, and the light blue horizon...it all seems to melt together as one and seem to be never ending.  Watching that view with the sunset and how the sky lights up is nothing less than awe inspiring.

We contemplated staying here or the St. Regis Maldives and decided to stay here because if you are going to be all alone on an island, we decided, you want great service and a good coral reef to snorkel.  This hotel lived up to all of that and more! I highly recommend it!

 

PROS:

They offer free water in reusable glass bottles that are replenished in your room daily, multiple times a day.  There's ladies night at the SIP bar where women get 1 free drink.  Happy hour at the pool daily from 530-630 where is BOGO on drinks. Daily at 1pm they have free frozen fruit bars, 4pm has free magnum ice cream bars (they are so good).  Beautiful, relaxing, chill vibe with gentle electronic music playing in the background in some areas--some areas are completely quiet and tranquil.  Even with the hotel at full capacity, it never feels too full, and there are many secluded areas to have private moments on.  Sometimes you feel you are on your own private island....aaaah.  Housekeeping is constant...fresh towels, fresh water, clean room at all times.  The reef here is great with many beautiful fish.

CONS:

Some of the really small things is that the AC goes into eco mode, which I understand, but then you come back to a fairly hot room that takes a while to cool down.  Maybe they could have it not be SO eco or have a longer turn off time.  Also, There is alot of knocking on the door daily!  We don't have a do not disturb sign here.  I asked, there is supposed to be one.  KIDS: they allow them now and there is no separate pool or area for them, so they are in the pool with their noodles and super soaker guns, being kids.  It ruins the tranquility.  When we were here, there were only a few, so it wasn't horrible....but I was told the week before there was 20 of them...eek...that would not be fun as it is small sleepy island.

 

ARRIVAL:

Greeter at airport wonderful and efficient 

 

LOUNGE:

At lounge, limited food options. Here in the lounge was asked to do mobile check into hotel so process would be quicker.  Was asked again here what flight we are leaving on and what's Marriott confirmation # even though we had given this info previously.  Was not pleasant to be asked this yet again when extremely tired and discombobulated after a 3am flight to the island.

 

SEAPLANE:

This is not under the control of the hotel, but still will be part of your experience.  Seaplane is hot, no AC.  You go from seaplane to a boat to a short distance to the actual dock where you get off.  The seaplane is not a very nice experience and not something I would really want to have to do again.

At the dock, everyone greets us, and is very friendly and welcoming.  However, room is not ready for 2 hours.  We have to sit by pool and wait.  We weren't offered to get changed into less hot clothes (I was wearing jeans) from our luggage.  We had to specifically ask to get our luggage, which was sitting back all the way at the dock.  Not such a big deal, but harrowing when you are hot and tired to have to deal with.  

Told to reach concierge, you can use whats app.  Problem is I hadn't previously downloaded it, thus, I can't get the sms code here because I don't get service. People should definitely be told to download whats app ahead of time.  

 

ROOM

OWB, just lovely! Spacious.  Has a couple steps on each side of the bed, makes carrying luggage to the closet and navigating at night going to the bathroom slightly challenging, so be aware of that.  It is a very large room.  It has a ceiling fan.  There is a DVD player and you can get movies to watch from the library room upon request.  The room has surround sound BOSE system inside and outside your OWB and you can play your fave music inside and out! The light switches in the room are plentiful...not too easy figuring out which one does what! I wish they had labels....I'm still not sure if I know what they all do.  The deck of the OWB is HUGE!!! Has a shaded area, 2 lounge chairs, a table with upright chairs, a plunge pool...so much space!  At night, there is some fun ambient lighting out there.  There are dividers up between the OWB's and it is private, no one can see you.  We stayed in 207, which is the 7th OWB on the lagoon side.  I prefer the lagoon side since it's more fun to look at the beach and the bar for background contrast in the horizon.  Being the 7th OWB out was far enough away that no one could see us, but we could still hear the music in the background at night.  The other side of the OWB's is more ocean, more deep, and the seaplanes land/take off from there.  Every time a plane lands, you can hear them and they have a very bad fume smell that lasts for a while as they have to rev the engine upon landing and take off.  I much prefer the lagoon side.

AIR CONDITIONING

works pretty well. It goes down to 65 F on the screen, but it doesn't feel like it is that cold.  We had to leave it on 65 all the time to feel cool.  It has an eco setting that detects when the patio door is open or you aren't there, and minimizes the cooling.  While I appreciate the eco friendliness of this, when you come back to the room it is pretty hot and takes a while to cool back down

MINI BAR

there us complimentary soft drinks and juice! Nice job, W! They give you refillable glass bottles with filtered water that housekeeping replenishes daily.  There is also more in the gym if you need it.  There are 2 sizes of the bottles, and the smaller ones fit in your fridge to keep them cold.  There is enough room in the fridge for a couple of bottles. There is your standard alcohol and a wine fridge, with bottles about 50-65usd for sale.

IN ROOM ARRIVAL

we were greeted with a bottle of champagne, coconut water, bottle of still water, and some red candies in the shape of lips and other designs.  These look like little chocolates but they're not there are actually white chocolates.  While they are a nice looking touch, they don't actually taste the good. Would much prefer real chocolates!

BED:

Very comfortable! Perfectly firm but not too much.  The pillows are a little uncomfortable for my taste.  There seems to be a down one which is very squishy with no support or a foam one which feels too hard and gives you a slight headache.  I think they could do better on the pillows.

FREEBIES

Free homemade magnum ice cream bars daily at 4pm at the pool, which were amazing and refreshing! Free green apples, free granola bars, free fruit bars at 1pm at the pool.  We also got a daily bottle of acqua panna to the room.  

FOOD

There are 3 main restaurants that rotate with 1 being closed daily (Kitchen, Fish, Sip). There is also sushi at the SIP bar as well as some burgers and pizza at the WET bar pool

KITCHEN: Asian, Indian, Western food

this is where you eat breakfast daily.  As a platinum, I was able to add this as my welcome amenity for free breakfast.  Breakfast is great! Has many options for all cultures: western, asian, and indian.  We also ate dinner here a couple of times and really enjoyed it as well....got a thai dish one night and an indian chicken dish the next night.  We like this kind of food and there was rice and paratha bread with the meal...all things we like.   Yes, a bottle of water at dinner is $12...but it is this way any time you go on vacation to a resort. Dinner for 2 here without cocktails will be about $100 USD

FIRE: BBQ This is the BBQ restaurant which has chairs on the beach.  If you go right before sunset, you get to watch the sunset from your table while sitting on the white sand....very romantic! We got the pork ribs, which were delicious.  We didn't finish them all so we were able to take them back to our room as a snack for the next day at lunch.  The box fit nicely into our fridge with the drinks.  Dishes here are anywhere from $35-50 USD. Dinner for 2 was $200 with 1 cocktail each.

FISH: Seafood

They had a special maldivian lobster night here for $185 pp.  It was 4 course and all lobster except dessert. I am not a fan of lobster so the chef made me some grilled prawns.  Seafood is not my favorite food, but my husband really enjoyed it.

 

HOUSEKEEPING

Is Plentiful! They are in your room when you are not there, replenishing towels and water, and making your bed.  Housekeeping is so nice and thorough.  

 

SERVICE

IMPECCABLE.  Some of the best we have ever had.  Everyone is here to make you happy.  Everyone smiles and says good morning.  Everyone is friendly.  I appreciate that.  And yes, Chunky Matthew, is there to help you and make your stay even better.  Since what's app didn't work for me, he hooked me up to message him on IG whenever I needed anything.  I took him up on that a couple of times and he took care of what I needed pretty immediately.  Kudo's to Chunky and the ENTIRE W Maldives team.  We will not forget the service here and the rest of the world should look to your staff for what it means to provide a great service experience.  Thank you!

 

GROUNDS

The gardening and grounds here is perfectly manicured to island oasis status! Combine that with the ambient music and the ambient lighting after sunset and WOW!! So relaxing and beautiful.

 

ELITE LOYALTY

As a platinum elite, was allowed to choose breakfast as my amenity.  It was great! Glad we chose it.  There is no lounge here for elites, but one is not really needed. They had a sunset reception for elites one night on the jetty with champagne and cocktails, dj spinning, and appetizers.  Did I mention the sunset view from the jetty! WOW!

 

DIVE CENTER

This is an independent run facility on the island that offers snorkel and your standard water sports activities.  Thank you to manager Karen for making sure we were taken care of.  We went on the whale shark excursion.  It is 1.5 hours away on a very nice boat (has bathrooms).  We loved it! We saw and swam with the whale shark as well as the Manta rays.  It was great and I'm happy we did it. We also did the private snorkel around the reef with Mohammed. Glad we did this as the reef is large and sometimes very deep.  He helped us navigate it and make me feel more secure about what we were doing. The house reef is gorgeous! We saw reef sharks, turtles, snapper, tuna, trigger fish, morey eel, and schools of beautiful fish I don't even know what they were!

 

SPA

This is no ordinary spa! Wow! Trust me, go! The spa has no walls at the checkin area and is outside.  They have nice cold teas there and fresh oranges.  I got the detox massage which was like no other massage I've ever gotten.  It was slow, medium to deep pressure, with broad strokes.  It was both relaxing and muscle tension relieving all at the same time.  They use jasmine and coconut oil on you.  The room that you get your massage in is an OWB all in itself, it has a built in steam room, and an outdoor deck that looks out onto the ocean.  Before the massage, you go onto the deck and get a very nice foot wash and scrub.  Just lovely! Really enjoyed it.

 

NIGHT CLUB

The night club is closed.   They don't use it anymore.  The only area for dancing is the SIP bar at night with the DJ.  The DJ plays until about 11pm on some nights.

 

CHILDREN

This hotel use to be adults only, but they recently now allow children to come.  This hotel doesn't seem to be made for kids, in my opinion.  It oozes sexy and chill....the opposite of children.  There is no kid play area, there is no kid pool, there is no kid anything.  So the kids are in the 1 pool with you.  Perhaps another pool area for kids only and the pool by the bar should be adults only would be better

 

 

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W Maldives is truly a WOW

Would you like to write a review on the W Retreat & Spa Maldives?

No, thank you.
Yes
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tmousewins is offline  
Old Mar 26, 19, 2:01 am
  #578  
 
Join Date: May 2018
Location: Muscat/Doha/Manchester
Programs: Oman Air Gold, Qatar Airways Platinum, Marriott Ambassador, HH Diamond, GHA Black, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 352
Originally Posted by tmousewins View Post
<Review>

Thank you for the excellent review, worried now about taking my 2 year old later this year iA...hmmm!!

Last edited by Oxon Flyer; Mar 26, 19 at 9:47 am Reason: remove requote of the whole review for ease of viewing
AbuCordoba is offline  
Old Mar 29, 19, 9:06 am
  #579  
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: NYC
Posts: 69
[QUOTE=dqdude;30860597]
Originally Posted by bgriff View Post
I spent 340K points for that room for 5 nights and felt like it was worthwhile, but I don't know if I'd spend 740K points for it. If you can find availability, 5 nights in a beach villa should be available for 340K points now, and the hotel usually offers a buy-up to overwater oasis for around $1500 for 5 nights, which IMO is a better value than using 400K additional points to secure the upgrade. But it depends how many points you have and how you value them.

I assume the 340k was post August merger .

There are no other point redemptions available for my dates .

I don't like wasting points but I am switching to Hyatt after 2020 so the points hit isn't terrible.

$1,500 for five nights? Is that at check-in? I emailed reservations and they told me an upgrade to an overwater would be ~$616 (inc. tax) per night for my six night points stay (ie. $3,696 total). FWIW I'm only gold.

Trying to decide now if I take the $600 upgrade for 2-3 nights of my stay or just wait until arrival and risk there not be availability. I'm staying 4/28 - 5/4.
Kylash is offline  
Old Mar 29, 19, 1:27 pm
  #580  
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Brooklyn
Programs: Delta Diamond, Bonvoy something good; sometimes other things too
Posts: 4,027
[QUOTE=Kylash;30942662]
Originally Posted by dqdude View Post

$1,500 for five nights? Is that at check-in? I emailed reservations and they told me an upgrade to an overwater would be ~$616 (inc. tax) per night for my six night points stay (ie. $3,696 total). FWIW I'm only gold.

Trying to decide now if I take the $600 upgrade for 2-3 nights of my stay or just wait until arrival and risk there not be availability. I'm staying 4/28 - 5/4.
If you go back a bit through the thread there are a few data points on upgrade costs as quoted by the hotel in advance of arrival and they were typically around the $300/night level I mentioned, but obviously that's not guaranteed, so I have no idea if your dates happen to be more expensive for whatever reason or if the hotel has raised its rates in general. Though if your dates are locked in it doesn't really matter. IMO the upgrade isn't worth that much but it's obviously a very personal decision. I didn't stay in one but the beach villas looked very nice to me, they are closer to the main recommended scuba area than the OWVs are, they all have pools, and they offer direct access to the pristine white sand beach. So it's hardly a sacrifice to stick with the "base" room.
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Old Mar 30, 19, 7:40 pm
  #581  
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Programs: QF WP
Posts: 39
Looking at the points booking, 5 nights, 340k points + Total taxes & fees of 1,010.01 USD - is this $1010USD on top of the sea plane transfer?
ferni is offline  
Old Mar 30, 19, 7:43 pm
  #582  
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Programs: Marriott, IHG, United
Posts: 47
Originally Posted by ferni View Post
Looking at the points booking, 5 nights, 340k points + Total taxes & fees of 1,010.01 USD - is this $1010USD on top of the sea plane transfer?
I believe that is your transfer cost but I could be wrong.
IAlwaysCall is offline  
Old Mar 30, 19, 9:39 pm
  #583  
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Palm Springs, CA
Programs: AA EXP / Marriott AMB & LT Titanium
Posts: 287
Originally Posted by ferni View Post
Looking at the points booking, 5 nights, 340k points + Total taxes & fees of 1,010.01 USD - is this $1010USD on top of the sea plane transfer?
$950 is round trip seaplane transfer for two persons
$60 is $12 per night Green Tax
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FrontOfTheCurtain is offline  
Old Mar 31, 19, 1:01 am
  #584  
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Programs: QF WP
Posts: 39
Originally Posted by FrontOfTheCurtain View Post


$950 is round trip seaplane transfer for two persons
$60 is $12 per night Green Tax
Thanks, that confirmed what I found out by email...

The following charges are applicable for Combined Seaplane transfer(Reflected as destination Amenity fee):
Children 0-2.99yrs Complimentary
Children 3-11.99yrs USD 235 per person
Adult above 12yrs USD 475 per person
ferni is offline  
Old Mar 31, 19, 4:16 am
  #585  
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 94
We're here now.

Did not get the info on B&F discount but did saw it on the bill last night at Kitchen, it was 33% off for Platinum.
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