If you follow me on social media you know we visited the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi this past December 2021.
I will be breaking our stay at the resort into several parts because honestly, I don’t think one part will do justice to the place and also because I have way too many gorgeous photos to just ignore and never publish.
This part will deal with the pre-arrival and our King Reef Villa in the resort.
The next article will be with the information of the resort, activities as well as the way I actually booked it and saved not only hundreds on the transfer to the Waldorf Astoria Maldives but also thousands ($15,000) on our stay.
I have booked and cancelled this resort 3 times in the last few years because something always happened.
Yep, many people will consider this lucky since about 3 weeks before our actual travel date I was just casually browsing and found availability for 5 nights. Then I managed to get the 6night when it opened up.
Definitely felt lucky and someone must have cancelled.
Finally this year, we decided that we should make the trip and since we were in Saudi it was closer and also cheaper.
Every time I have corresponded with the resort in the previous years and during the preparation of this trip they have been fantastic.
They have emailed me and replied to questions and clarifications.
A few days prior to our stay they asked for the guest’s names, any special occasions, and also the flight details.
Arrival At Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi Maldives
The Waldorf Astoria Maldives obviously knows when you arrive so they expect you with several staff members there to greet you at the jetty.
Upon arrival at the resort, we were greeted with smiles and a nice blue sky.
Every guest in the resort has their own personal concierge.
I cannot speak of any other concierge of the resort but our concierge Alina was fantastic.
We never felt anything was too much and she was always on hand smiling. In general, all staff was like this.
There are 112 villas but even at 70 to 80 % capacity when we were there, it never felt crowded. Also, there is over 1000 staff on the island making the whole experience possible.
Because our room was not ready when we arrived we were taken to the cabanas they have on the beach to relax and freshen up.
The cabanas had a small living space and a shower. They can be rented for the day for $300, however, there is no private beach since it is close to the beach villas.
We did also all the formalities of checking in.
I am a Diamond Hilton and I did use a redemption for 6 nights.
You can read all about it here.
But in short, it saved me about $15,000 since it was peak season in December.
I will mention in the next article about redemption and how you can get a similar deal.
The benefits for Diamond members are as below:
- Free breakfast
- Complimentary Wi-Fi
- Complimentary late checkout
- Complimentary two bottles of water daily
- In-villa VIP welcome Champagne and sweets
- Complimentary additional 30 minutes added to a booked 60-minute massage at the spa
- Complimentary happy hour from 4-5 p.m. at Peacock Alley
- 50% off selected beverages at Nava Beach Club from 10-11:30 p.m.
In general, I will say that the drinks and the breakfast were very good value. We don’t drink alcohol but my mum who was with us does and we did save a pretty penny on all her drinks during happy hour.
Also, we didn’t pay for breakfast for the third adult. I would have had to pay $75 plus tax per day.
In the end, they didn’t charge me which I expected, since many Hilton properties don’t.
We did not get an upgrade but this is never promised with the Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi and they do make it clear in the initial welcome email.
To be honest, I actually preferred the villa we had. I could enjoy snorkelling, privacy and close to the resort activities.
You can find the Tripadvisor reviews of the resort here.
Waldorf Astoria Maldives Villa
We were given villa number 503, which was overlooking the sea rather than the lagoon and I was very thankful for this.
The villas are huge and there is plenty of space.
In general, in the Maldives, you don’t actually stay indoors much so the outdoor space was plenty and very nicely appointed.
Our booking was for 3 adults and 1 child.
Since I booked on points and the villa accepts 4 adults I managed to book it.
I did receive an email that there should have been a charge of $400 plus tax a night for the extra bed! However they waived this on “this occasion”.
I would have argued about this charge if they really wanted to go through with it because it has never happened before with a Hilton.
They also accommodated 5 people with 3 kids and two extra beds without charge, as I spoke with some guests.
In general, I found the property very accommodating and polite without being pushy to promote upgrades or to charge extra.
Bedroom King Reef Villa Waldorf Astoria Maldives
Our villa didn’t have a living room, this is the only difference between King Reef Villas and the Grand King Reef villas. The latter also has a living room space as well.
When we arrived we had a nice setup since I had let them know it was our anniversary.
We had fruits and wine as welcome gifts as well as a delicious anniversary cake.
Even with the extra bed and the baby cot they had provided there was still plenty of room to walk around.
Everything is operated via an Ipad, from the lights to the curtains, to room service menus everything was there.
Another feature I want in my house, because who wants to get out of bed to turn off lights.
Bathroom Dreams King Reef Villa
If I could build the bathroom of my dreams it will look pretty much like this.
Spacious with warm wood accents and a huge bathtub. Not that I am a bathtub person but this was like a plunge pool.
There was a walking outdoor shower as well which we never used as well as a separate indoor shower.
Also talking about dream bathrooms I really liked the smart toilets with the bidet and the self-rising toilet seat.
I wish I had bought one for our house when we re-did the bathroom.
It is the small things that make you feel the luxury.
The Waldorf Astoria Maldives is also a very kids-friendly property as they had left not only the cot but also a stuffed animal and a whole basket with baby toiletries.
All of which were a hit with our toddler.
Outdoor space King Reef Villa
Pretty much all the villas in the resort have the same layout even the ones that are on the beach, apart from the hammock obviously.
There was an infinity pool, which we spent hours in, as well as a daybed swing, a swing under the gazebo, the dining table as well as sunbeds, and the overwater hammock which we enjoyed.
Plus you have a staircase with direct access into the ocean.
The reason why I really liked the reed villa, is because after my snorkel experience in Maafushi I really wanted to enjoy and see the fish.
We managed to go every day at the end between the shallow and deep ends and enjoy various fish.
Privacy as Muslim Traveller & Hijabi
If you are a Muslim traveller reading this review and want a halal holiday, I can say that our villa was pretty private.
Of course, people can swim outside but I only saw one couple once and they were actually snorkelling.
I did swim in a bikini without a problem or fear of being overlooked.
While you are in the pool you are pretty high up and since there is the only sea in front of you and the rest is blocked it is very private.
I actually prefer them that the king beach villas, which I asked to see, and I will make another post on the info and photos. It was also a two-bedroom one as well.
Overall I was happy with the villa we stayed in at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi. It was spacious, luxurious, and everything I wanted from my first halal holiday in the Maldives.
I would happily return there if I find availability again and stay in the same King Reef Villa.