Nestled on a far-flung atoll in the Maldives, The Ritz Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands stands as a beacon of luxury and tranquillity amidst the bluest waters and the whitest sandy beaches you’ve ever laid eyes on. My recent visit to this breathtaking destination was nothing short of extraordinary, offering an unparalleled experience of indulgence and relaxation.

The Ritz-Carlton brand is synonymous with sophistication and timeless elegance. With a decades-long legacy, it has carved a niche in the hospitality industry, setting benchmarks for unparalleled service and luxurious accommodations. The opening of The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands marks an exciting new chapter for the brand but of all places, The Maldives is a destination where it’s a challenge to stand out. Home to some of the world’s most esteemed hotel brands and resorts, it’s stiff competition to attract (and re-attract) guests who have the monopoly on where to stay.

My journey commenced at Male airport where I was guided onboard The Ritz Carlton’s luxury yacht. Most hotels have their own boat for transportation but this was the first of many experiences that showcase the hotel’s commitment to being a step above the rest. A heavenly voyage spanning approximately an hour simply wasn’t enough time to revel in the experience but this seamless transition to the island only served as a prelude to the opulence awaiting at the resort.

The resort’s architectural marvel seamlessly blends into the pristine Maldivian landscape, marrying modern aesthetics with nature’s splendour. From overwater villas to beachfront retreats, each accommodation (of which every single one has its own pool) exudes luxury while preserving the serenity of the surroundings. What sets The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands apart is its understated “quiet luxury,” eschewing flamboyance for an ambience of refined elegance.

I had the absolute pleasure of residing in one of their Beach Pool Villas which are nothing short of enchanting. For first-timers, I’d always recommend a water villa because the experience is like nothing else, but repeat travellers (myself included) often prefer beach villas because they tend to offer more space and privacy. From bespoke amenities such as refillable Bamford products, your own raffia tote (which you can take home with you… and I did!) and indulgent treats like homemade date and cacao cookies replenished daily, every detail exuded luxury and thoughtfulness. Floor-to-ceiling windows seamlessly connect the indoors with the breathtaking vistas outside, creating a harmonious blend of comfort and nature.

A testament to The Ritz-Carlton’s commitment to unparalleled service is the “Aris Meeha” butler concept, ensuring every guest, irrespective of their room category, experiences personalised attention and bespoke service. This unique approach truly elevates the guest experience, adding an extra layer of indulgence to the stay. Our Aris Meeha, Muneef, was simply wonderful… from reservations and spa bookings to topping up the cookies in the mini bar, he insisted nothing was too much trouble. I get a sense all the incredible Aris Meehas have perfected the art of always being available but never being too on top of you.

The crown jewel of relaxation at The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Island is their Spa. This ethereal sanctuary, with its distinctive spherical design, offers guests an unparalleled experience that transcends the ordinary. Partnering with Bamford (one of my favourite skincare brands), the spa beckons visitors into a realm of serenity and holistic wellness. From the moment I stepped into the spa’s reception, I was enveloped in an aura of mindfulness and care. Each aspect of my B Balanced massage, from the soothing ambience to the expert touch of the therapist, was meticulously planned and executed with utmost thoughtfulness, leaving me feeling utterly rejuvenated and revitalised. 

Dining at The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands is a gastronomic journey like no other, and with seven exquisite restaurants to choose from, you’ll never get bored. From the relaxed environment at Beach Shack (a favourite of many guests for lunch), serving delectable Mediterranean cuisine (the Tuna Tartar was to die for), to the immersive chef’s table experience at IWAU, where world-class Japanese chefs showcase their culinary prowess under the starlit sky, each meal was a symphony of flavour.

The breakfast experience at La Locanda, their overwater restaurant, is truly exceptional and merits special recognition. Transitioning from serving exquisite Italian cuisine by night, La Locanda offers a breathtaking setting to witness the sunrise while relishing a freshly made green juice and savouring a perfectly cooked-to-order omelette. Moreover, the pastries crafted by their skilled pastry chef deserve noteworthy acclaim for their irresistibly flaky texture and unparalleled taste—an indulgence I may or may not have enjoyed just a smidge!

What truly sets The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands apart is its faultless service, a remarkable achievement considering its relatively young age of just two years. In this short span, the resort has entrenched itself as a paragon of excellence, challenging even the most established competitors in the Maldives. Its embodiment of “quiet luxury” serves as a beacon for discerning travellers seeking a refined and understated escape in the heart of paradise.

Book here.

words by Molly Jennings

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