BANDOS ISLAND RESORT
Conveniently located only a 15-minute boat ride from Male, Bandos Island Resort sits on its own small atoll. The 225 rooms nestle among tropical vegetation and are all within walking distance of the beach. Comfort, luxury and convenience are the watchwords of the resort. With its superb house reef diving, excellent boat diving and a very well-run dive centre, it is a perfect choice for divers who want quality. The facilities for non-divers and for children mean that divers are free to enjoy their diving while partners or other family members enjoy the water sports facilities, the gym, the spa or just simply relaxing in the sun.
The house reef is one of the best known and most appreciated in the Maldives, and so it could not be easier to take advantage of some marvellous on-the-spot diving. Qualified divers can enjoy ‘unlimited’ day diving on the house reef which is regularly visited by White-tip and Black-tip Reef Sharks as well as some lovely, colourful reef fish. These harmless sharks, around 2 metres in length, and also their small offspring, cruise gracefully past divers. Turtles can be found swimming over the coral and larger schooling fish surge around the reef edge. There is also a small wreck just off shore. A shuttle boat service is freely available to Bandos Rock, an area of the house reef a little further away from shore. There are three entry points located around the island for shore entries. For those who want to take a look at some of the off-shore reefs, four boats depart twice daily; the first departure is at 0900 and the second after lunch. Pick up any of these boats to explore the myriad dive sites of North Male atoll as well as some fantastic seasonal Manta Ray areas. Longer day trips to visit more remote sites are regularly arranged.
Standard Rooms are air-conditioned and built on the beachfront, though some rooms may have limited sea views due to vegetation growth. All are furnished simply and elegantly. Each thatched-roofed room can be made up with double or twin beds, has a mini-bar, satellite TV, tea and coffee making facilities, and an electronic safe. The rooms are built in blocks of four.
Deluxe Rooms are air-conditioned and are all situated on the beach. They are built in blocks of two and all have king beds and have a separate living area and bedroom. The rooms have connecting doors, which can be unlocked if families are staying in adjacent rooms. These spacious rooms have cool tiled floors, a mini-bar, satellite TV, tea and coffee making facilities, and an electronic safe. Bathrooms have a bath and a shower. Beach beds and beach chairs are provided outside.
Garden Villas are surrounded by neatly maintained tropical gardens in the middle of the island close to the swimming pool. These rooms are decorated in the style of a wooden chalet and all have four-poster king beds and a private patio. The rooms are very spacious and attractive, having all the features of the Deluxe Rooms.
Jacuzzi Beach Villas were newly built in 2005 and are set right on the beach overlooking a crystal-clear lagoon. These duplexes house living and bedroom facilities on the upper floor with a balcony looking out on to the sea. The lower floor is home to the Jacuzzi and the bathroom with a seating area at the front leading out to the sun deck. A single bed can be added downstairs to make these villas suitable for either 3 adults or 2 adults and a child.
The exclusive Water Villas are built on wooden stilts and perch on the edge of the ocean, giving you the sensation that you are hovering over the waves! Each villa has separate living and bed rooms. The living rooms are furnished in a modern and very spacious ambiance. Beds are all four-poster king beds. Each Water Villa has its own Jacuzzi as well as outdoor shower and spacious sundeck area. These villas are the epitome of luxury and tranquillity.
Garden, Jacuzzi Beach and Water Villas are air conditioned with en-suite bathrooms, tea and coffee making facilities, mini-bar and electronic safe.
The dining options at Bandos are excellent. Whether you want afternoon tea, a full three course meal or a light snack, the three restaurants and the café here can cater for virtually all tastes. Those who have pre-booked their meals will dine in the Gallery Restaurant where meals are served buffet style. The Harbour Restaurant offers Maldivian game fish dishes, excellent pastas and international dishes. The Sea Breeze Café is open round the clock and offers a variety of dishes including Indian curries, pizza or hamburgers, as well as Italian choices. Bandos has three bars, the lively Sand Bar, the quieter Pool Bar and the outdoor Sun Downers bar, so-called due to its end-of-pier location where it enjoys terrific sunset views each evening.
A variety of activities, other than diving, are available at the resort. The secluded and quiet Anggerik Spa offers a variety of facials, massages (both eastern and western style) and beauty therapies as well as manicures and pedicures. The fully equipped gymnasium at the Paradise Club is equipped with state of the art work out machines and is staffed by qualified sports instructors. It is open to all guests and is free of charge. so try an aerobics session, a game of badminton, volleyball or tennis on the floodlit court, or try a few lengths in the pool. There is also a billiards room and a TV room with news, sports and entertainment channels.
Water sports facilities include water skiing, parasailing, banana boat riding, wakeboarding, fun tubes and canoeing. Catamaran sailing and windsurfing are also available at the Water Sports Centre.
Other facilities include a children’s crèche, and child care is available.
Stays can be of any length. Prices given below relate to a stay of 7 nights.
Price: from $1109 for 7 nights. Includes: 7-nights room and breakfast accommodation in a Standard Room at Bandos Island Resort; 6 days of two tank boat diving.
Meal plan: $259 for half board (breakfast and dinner); $469 for full board (breakfast, lunch and dinner).
Various dive packages are available. A 10 shore dive package costs $340; 6 days of unlimited shore diving costs $563
Airport transfers by speedboat cost $80 return.
Single Occupancy Supplement: from $441 for 7 nights.