We step off the plane at Velana International Airport; the gateway to the luxury resort islands of the Maldives, without knowing what to expect. The gleaming waters beckon just across the road from the airport, where our speedboat awaits to take us to Anantara Dhigu.
Anantara Dhigu Maldives Resort
After a 45-minutes ride, we arrive at the pristine shore of Dhigufinolhu, part of the South Male atoll. The team greets us with beating drums and the warmest of smiles, and we feel like we’ve come home. And seriously with waters so clear, and so aquamarine, who would not want this to be their home?
Sweet Pool Suite
Home? The Anantara Pool Suite please, thank you very much. Our suite is spacious, with a king bed, a huge outdoor bathroom and bathtub, plus a terrace which connects to the pool deck. Beyond that? The Indian Ocean, baby. Other options include overwater villas and suites, but we really did love our beach villa because it gave us the freedom of the sand beneath our feet, steps away from the sea.
Wine & Dine
What else to do on a tropical island paradise besides frolicking in the sea and snoozing at the spa? Feast of course! And feast we did. From the international breakfast spread at Fushi Cafe, to late poolside lunches at Aqua. Then a spot of activity such as a swim, an excursion or petanque before we spruced up for sophisticated dinner at the waterside Sea. Fire. Salt. One evening, we took the boat across to sister property, Anantara Veli (the ‘honeymooner’s’ resort) where we ate at the overwater Baan Hura. With the waves were crashing in the distance and the fish feeding beneath us, coupled with Thai food that was authentic, it was fantastic. Note that Anantara Veli welcomes kids after 6pm (for dinner) and kids under 12 eat for free throughout both resorts (woot!!).
Anantara Spa – imagine you’re lying face down in a quiet, cool room. If you open your eyes and look down, you can see the colourful fish darting in and out of the corals through the glass pane in the floor. The soothing, hypnotic sound of lapping waves surrounds you. The salty sea breeze caresses you. A skilled therapist is working out the kinks in your back, rubbing fragrant oil onto your skin, warm hands transferring positive energy, lulling you into a dreamlike state. Yup, #takemebacknow!
Diving with Dolphins
Learn SCUBA with professional instructors, go swimming with dolphins or enjoy an afternoon dolphin-spotting cruise, do some coral adoption, yoga or simply stroll around the island for those picture perfect white sand, emerald sea grams. There are also options to have a gourmet picnic on an uninhabited island or just go snorkelling around the island. Children will love the Dhoni Club, a collection of traditional boats ‘beached’ in the centre of the island, housing playground, sandpit, as well as a host of daily activities guided by trained child-minders.
We loved the laid-back, yet warm vibe at Anantara Dhigu. It’s completely family-friendly with tons of activities to please, yet pockets exist for parents looking for some romantic quality time – as well as baby sitters! Another plus, the quick and easy transfer from Male.