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Hotel Review: The Reethi Beach Resort, Fonimagoodhoo, Baa Atoll in the Maldives

Reethi Beach Resort is located on the beautiful and lush Fonimagoodhoo Island, surrounded by a beautiful lagoon and white, sandy beach.

By Melanie Kruger  |  May 17, 2022
Reethi Beach Maldives

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The Indian Ocean archipelago of the Maldives is a veritable slice of paradise and a bucket list destination for many, with its 1,200 islands known for their soft white sand beaches and swaying palms, lapped by crystalline turquoise waters that are so clear, you can see right to the bottom.

The Baa Atoll is one of 26 atolls and is reachable via either a 35-minute seaplane or a 45-minute domestic flight and speedboat combo from Male, enjoying a paradisiacal location that is just far enough away from the hustle and bustle of the city without compromising on convenience. Here, the tiny barefoot island of Fonimagoodhoo is home to the rustic tropical haven of the Reethi Beach Resort, where I was lucky enough to spend the final few days of my recent visit to the Maldives – which offers laid-back luxury and the utmost in relaxation for guests looking to get away from it all and unwind from the stresses of daily life.

To get there myself, I took a comfortable domestic flight with Maldivian airline FlyMe, which got me quickly and efficiently to the neighbouring island of Dharavandoo via one of the operator’s comfortable, air-conditioned ATR 72-500 turbo prop aircrafts, before being whisked on a scenic journey across the surrounding waters to my final destination by speedboat.

Fonimagoodhoo is just 600m x 200m in size, with only 15 percent of the land area built upon, which means, on arrival, you truly feel as if you’ve stepped into a tropical slice of paradise. Fringed by those famous Maldivian white-sand beaches, the island also enjoys privileged access to its own house reef, just 30m to 100m from shore, which is teeming with colourful marine life, pretty corals life and tropical fish – as well as the occasional Blacktip Reef or Nurse Shark and a variety of different types of Rays.

Hotel

Reethi Beach Maldives
Reethi Beach Resort is located on the beautiful and lush Fonimagoodhoo Island, surrounded by a beautiful lagoon and white, sandy beach

If one thing is apparent from the moment you set foot on the island, it’s the commitment of the hotel’s management and staff to maintaining a sustainable and eco-friendly environment, with conservation policies being continually improved. The entire resort is pristine, and it was nice to see that its clientele seemed to be as caring about the natural environment as the staff themselves.

Featuring a range of air-conditioned beachfront and water villas set amongst tropical foliage or stilted over the island’s breath-taking blue lagoon, this secluded hideaway has everything you need to relax and unwind without any danger of ever feeling bored. There are five restaurants and five bars located across the island, with a PADI five-star diving centre on site that caters to both amateur and experienced scuba enthusiasts, along with a luxurious beachfront spa and wellness retreat, water sports centre and sports complex, and a souvenir shop.

A stay here is all about letting go of the stresses and strains of modern life and switching off for the duration, immersing yourself in the stunning natural beauty that surrounds you and truly reconnecting with your inner peace – so come with this in mind, and you’re guaranteed a blissful experience.

Rooms and suites

Deluxe Sunset Villa
Rustic elegance is the order of the day when it comes to accommodation at the four star Reethi Beach Resort, and each of the spacious detached villas on the island offers peace and privacy

Rustic elegance is the order of the day when it comes to accommodation at the four star Reethi Beach Resort, and each of the spacious detached villas on the island offers peace and privacy – whether you’re staying in one of the 40 classic Reethi Sunrise Villas, the 30 stilted Water Villas, or somewhere in between.

I was fortunate enough to find myself checking into one of the 50 Deluxe Sunset Villas within the resort, which opened out directly onto the powdery soft, white sand beach and came complete with a private terrace, two sun loungers and a swing seat that was perfect for relaxing and enjoying the views. The main living area featured a large and comfortable bed, sofa and coffee table, while to the rear, the bathroom enjoyed a unique open air feel, and the occasional drifting in of the gentle Maldivian breeze was a constant reminder that I was, in fact, in paradise. 

Facilities within the villa included a TV, in-room safe, hairdryer, IDD telephone, mini bar – and of course, that all-important air conditioning to keep you cool at night. 

The resort’s Water Villas, on the other side of the island, offer a different perspective and guarantee a luxurious experience, set in a secluded location away from the island’s main throng and boasting spectacular views down over the turquoise waters below. Seriously, if you think you’ve seen turquoise waters but haven’t been to the Reethi Beach Resort, then think again – because these were some of the clearest I’d ever seen, and you can be sure they’ll take your breath away.

If you’re travelling with children or would like to share a villa with family, then the Family Suite, on the east side of the island, caters to larger parties and comprises two bedrooms, each with en suite bathrooms, both of which connect to a large central living space which opens out onto the beachfront.

Food and drink

Reethi Grill
The Reethi Grill offers a real ‘grill taste’, with a true ‘live-cooking’ experience to create a new dimension in fusion cuisine, with grill, tandoori and wood-fired pizza oven specialities

With five restaurants spanning everything from buffet-style dining to gourmet cuisine, there is certainly no shortage of dining options at the Reethi Beach Resort – and it’s just as well. A trip to the Maldives, for the most part, means complete seclusion on a private island, which is all part of its allure – so it’s essential for resorts to cater to a range of different tastes and offer a variety of different dining experiences, particularly for guests enjoying extended stays. 

Here, all boxes are ticked and based are covered, with something to suit every type of foodie. 

And add to that the five bars, which include a pool bar and three beach bars, and there’s no shortage of places to find an ice-cold beer or an expertly mixed sundowner – whatever the time of day happens to be.

A buffet-style breakfast, lunch and dinner are served at The Rehendi – the resort’s main restaurant, which can be found at the front of the island, to the left of reception and just beyond the main Rasgefaanu bar. Here, you’ll find options ranging from mouth-watering Maldivian specialities to freshly caught seafood and salads, and dishes from across the globe, with options changing daily – and a hot food station where chefs cook up the day’s specialities to order. There’s a different theme for each night of the week, and vegetarians and vegans are well catered for, with staff more than happy to help out any guests with particular dietary requirements.

With views over the gardens and the sea, The Rehendhi serves buffet-style breakfast, lunch and dinner

On our first night at the resort, it happened to be my husband’s birthday, so we made a reservation at the Reethi Grill for a balmy evening under the stars and a delicious seafood feast. This open air restaurant enjoys a soundtrack of waves lapping gently against the shore on the beach nearby, and offers a wide variety of fresh fish and seafood options along with grilled specialities, tandoori and wood-fired pizzas.

We opted for some succulent and sweet freshly-grilled jumbo prawns in ‘mojo de ajo’, with Thai basil and lemongrass, as well as the cooked-to-perfection catch-of-the-day Maldivian reef fish, accompanied by some tasty Mediterranean vegetables, and suffice it to say, it went down a treat. The staff also kindly surprised us with a bottle of wine and a birthday cake for my husband, which made for a memorable night which we topped off by heading over to the combined cultural and Earth Hour celebration at the Sunset Bar on the beach.

Another highlight of the culinary line-up is the Moodhu Bar and Restaurant – not least because of its privileged location stilted over the water at the end of a pier. Open throughout the day and evening, we regularly found ourselves popping in for a cocktail or two and to cool off from the intense afternoon sunshine, and would often spot nurse sharks and rays meandering past as we relaxed. Food wise, there’s a broad menu offering up everything from sandwiches, seafood, pizzas and fresh salads to decadent cakes and gateaux. A great spot for a late morning coffee or a romantic evening meal, we both agreed that it was our favourite on the island.

Moodhu Bar and Restaurant
Another highlight of the culinary lineup is the Moodhu Bar and Restaurant – not least because of its privileged location stilted over the water at the end of a pier

We were sad not to have time to check out the Saima Restaurant – an exclusive boutique-style restaurant with just five locations, nestled in a secluded, vegetation-fringed location close to Moodhu and the beach. Here, you can expect a sumptuous menu of Maldivian and international dishes and, so we’re told, a sophisticated experience and excellent service throughout. If you prefer the laid-back poolside vibe then the Alifaan Restaurant is a good option for lunch or a daytime refuel and serves up popular snacks such as burgers and crepes.

Of course, no tropical island resort would be complete without a cocktail bar or two, and besides the main Rasgefaanu bar, there are four more to choose from scattered across the island. Our favourite, was of course, the Sunset Bar, which was just a stroll down the beach from our villa and the perfect place to watch the sun dip beyond the horizon before dinner – but there are two more beach bars within the resort, as well as the poolside Veyo Bar, all of which serve up a variety of cold local and international beers, wines and spirits and soft drinks and shake some dreamy cocktails and mocktails, too.

To do

diving
Take the plunge at the resort’s fully equipped dive centre and scuba school, which offers a range of daily excursions, as well as the chance to learn to dive and complete your PADI qualification if you’re new to the sport

If relaxation is your goal, then you’re in the perfect place at Reethi Beach Resort. The setting is tranquil and serene, the beaches are perfect for lying back with a cocktail and a good book, and the Coconut Spa offers a range of indulgent massages, body and hair treatments, with promotions often available.

But, of course, the Maldives is also an ocean lover’s paradise, and if you’re enthralled by the world beneath the waves – or should I say, the calm turquoise waters that surround Fonimagoodhoo – then you could easily while away days on end exploring the resort’s house reef, as we found ourselves doing.

Home to an abundance of marine life, there’s plenty to see just off the beach, but if you’re the type who prefers to really take the plunge, then the resort’s fully equipped dive centre and scuba school offers a range of daily excursions, as well as the chance to learn to dive and complete your PADI qualification if you’re new to the sport. Depending on the time of year, dive trips may take you to see everything from manta rays to whale sharks – both breath-taking and memorable experiences you’ll be talking about for years to come. But be sure to visit in season if you’re eager to participate, as this isn’t always available – although turtle snorkelling and dolphin cruises happen weekly, throughout the year.

Adrenaline junkies are also well catered to at the Reethi Beach Resort, with the Ocean Fanatics water sports centre offering up the chance to try a range of water sports equipment including jet skis and kayaks – so if you’re eager to get out on the water, rather than in it, then be sure to stop by. You can also hire snorkelling equipment from here for a small fee if you don’t have your own.

In a nutshell

Reethi Beach Resort arrival jetty
For rustic, laid-back luxury in the Maldives, the Reethi Beach Resort provides the perfect opportunity to switch off, relax, and reacquaint yourself with the joys of the natural environment and the ocean

For rustic, laid-back luxury in the Maldives, the Reethi Beach Resort provides the perfect opportunity to switch off, relax, and reacquaint yourself with the joys of the natural environment and the ocean. An eco-conscious, barefoot slice of tropical Indian Ocean paradise that is certain to keep you coming back for more.

Factbox

Address: Fonimagoodhoo, Maldives
Telephone: +960 660 2626
Website: reethibeach.com

Check Availability

And Book Online

Hotel
Reethi Beach Resort
LLM may receive some revenue if you click BOOK NOW & book a stay via Booking.com. See terms of use.

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