I can’t believe it you guys. My husband and I somehow managed to fly to one of the most perfect-looking places on earth for our 1-year anniversary: The Maldives.
Not only that—we somehow managed to stay in the private paradise that was crowned “The #1 Top Resort in the World” by Condé Nast Traveler: Naladhu Private Island Maldives.
Dreams really do come true y’all.
WATCH THE VIDEO (and continue reading below):
WHY WE PICKED THIS LOCATION
If you follow the blog or my YouTube channel, then you may have seen our Honeymoon Diaries, which chronicled Karl and me getting married in Atlanta and then traveling to Bali and Hong Kong right afterwards. Although Karl doesn’t have a passion for traveling, he certainly found a passion during that trip that he didn’t realize he had – a passion for luxury villas with private pools. I knew my husband was fancy, but geez. He got one taste of that luxury villa life in Bali, and now he uses that as a reference point for any resort we visit.
Annnnd that’s how we came to The Maldives, the ultimate choice for anyone seeking tropical luxury. I knew it was the perfect destination for my hubby and his recently upgraded taste in accommodations.
Earlier this year, I fell in love with the Anantara brand when I learned that their resorts are not only luxurious, but they also have a deep commitment to protecting the environment—and you know I’m all for that. I had my first Anantara experience when I visited Banana Island in Doha, Qatar. I stayed there during a layover and it was incredible, though a total tease honestly. One night was just enough to whet my appetite to want to experience more.
So naturally, when I found out there were Anantara properties in The Maldives, I got super excited. There were several, but the one that jumped out at me was Naladhu Private Island. It just sounded ultra exotic. Was this my new Banana Island I’ve been longing to experience again? There was only one way to find out. So we booked two nights there and away we flew!
Well. Actually. Although we flew there eventually, we missed our first flight. If you want to be entertained by that whole traumatic event, then be sure to check out my Emirates Nightmare blog post—heads up though, that story will give you anxiety.
OUR DREAM HOME AWAY FROM HOME
Naladhu truly topped any resort experience we ever had. Karl not only got his luxury villa-style accommodations with a private pool, but it came with so much more.
The tone was immediately set when we were picked up from the airport by a private speedboat that escorted us to, well, I can’t even call it a villa. As a matter of fact, they don’t even call it a villa. They refer to their accommodations as houses—because that’s exactly the kind of vibe it exudes.
You don’t feel like you’re staying at a hotel when you go to Naladhu Maldives. You feel like you’re living in your ultimate dream home. They even pamper you with a 24 hour on-call house master to make you feel like the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
Our ocean house came with ocean views from the bedroom (including the soothing sounds of waves crashing right below us), a deck for viewing the ocean, a dining area where we could sit next to the ocean, a private pool with a view of the ocean—you see the theme here right? Yeah, all ocean everything. You could even see the ocean from the outdoor bathroom, which included a bathtub, waterfall shower, and a steam room.
This was next level fancy. I can only imagine Karl’s standards now. I have no idea what I’m going to do for our 2-year anniversary now. How do I top this??
Although we only had one night to feel like royalty, we made the most of it and took advantage of every single moment. Karl swam in the private pool until he got wrinkly (I vaguely recall him doing the same thing last year as well—he really seems to have an affinity for private pools, doesn’t he?) and after seeing him have so much fun in his own little world, it wasn’t long before I jumped right in.
Having the ocean as our backdrop really did take things to the next level for us. I honestly can’t think of anything more romantic than waking up to that view every morning. It was just striking to see. Whether we were lounging in bed, chilling on the deck, eating a lavish meal, swimming in the pool, or relaxing in the bathtub—that tropical ambiance was always there, reminding us that we weren’t somewhere ordinary.
OVERWATER BUNGALOW MASSAGES
We literally had to pry ourselves away from our private paradise. There was only one thing really that could entice us to leave: massages in an overwater bungalow.
So although we didn’t stay in one of those iconic overwater villas that seems to be synonymous with The Maldives, we still got to experience being inside of one.
Side note – the masseuse recognized me from my Instagram page! How random is that small is this world?
After our very relaxing massages, we chilled out in the lounge area. Couldn’t have picked a better place for a spa honestly. Those ocean views alone were enough to make us feel at total peace.
A LUXURY RESORT THAT CARES ABOUT THE ENVIRONMENT
As many of you know, over the years I have become increasingly aware of environmental issues. Before I book any resort, I often do some research to see if they are making strides in sustainability.
I support the Anantara brand because of its commitment to protecting the local environment, communities and culture around each of its hotels and resorts, while simultaneously creating authentic luxury travel experiences for travelers.
The Maldives is a country at high risk from the impacts of climate change, particularly when it comes to its coral reefs—a topic I’ll be diving into in my next post. I’m happy to report that Anantara Maldives properties are deeply invested in coral conservation and have even been awarded Green Growth Certification for their efforts.