At a Glance
Opened in late 2013, COMO Maalifushi has raised the bar when it comes to a truly serene, far-flung getaway in a pristine, private location far removed from the other resort islands.
With every luxury resort brand in the world trying to up fabulous quotient in the Maldives, COMO hotels may have outsmarted them all by going back to what it is that drew the smart set here in the first place: isolated islands. Its original resort COMO Cocoa Island has long attracted privileged purists, the ones who live glamorous lives but like escaping to natural beauty where less really is more. With their second property, COMO Maalefushi, which opened in November 2013, COMO has moved away from the cluster of resorts around Malé and found a private island even further south than COMO Cocoa Island.
This twenty-acre island lies in the pristine Thaa Atoll and is reached via a fifty-minute seaplane ride the south of Malé’s international airport. The Thaa Atoll’s first resort, this sixty-six-room property offers a genuine sense of escape (not an inhabited island in sight) and a spectacular untouched water world to explore. Divers and snorkelers can explore nearby reefs as well as spot rare hammerhead and whale sharks.
For those who don’t even want to share their days with other guests, the resort owns a neighboring island that can be booked for private picnics, beach idylls or private dinners. Guest rooms include overwater suites as well as beach rooms, suites and villas, some with their own private pools. Japanese designer Koichiro Ikebuchi, who also oversaw COMO Cocoa Island's spare aesthetic, masterminded the décor in the rooms as well as the three restaurants. He used locally sourced materials and maximized natural light to create cabins that seem to blend into the natural environment for minimal environmental impact.
In recognition of how the Maldives has expanded from a romantic, honeymoon destination into a magnet for families from all over the world, the resort contains three two-bedroom villas. As with all COMO properties, the Shambhala wellness spa and philosophy has been incorporated into treatments, daily yoga and a healthy menu option in all of the restaurants. The problem for COMO fanatics will be how to choose between the two Maldivian resorts. The solution: dividing time between the two.
Written by Melissa Biggs Bradley