Ritz-Carlton Resort Coming To The Maldives

Filed Under: Hotels, Marriott

I like to stay up to date on all the coolest luxury points hotels that are in the pipeline, but somehow I missed this one (I guess because of everything going on).

Ritz-Carlton Maldives Fari Islands

Marriott has signed an agreement to bring the Ritz-Carlton brand to the Maldives. The property is being developed by CPRC, a member of Singapore’s Pontiac Land Group.

The property will be known as the Ritz-Carlton Maldives Fari Islands, and is slated to open in late 2020 (I imagine this has the potential to be pushed back in light of everything going on).

The 100 villa property (including both land and overwater villas) will be located in the North Male Atoll, either a 50 minute speedboat ride or a 10 minute seaplane flight from Male International Airport.

The Fari Islands consists of an archipelago with three resorts, including the Ritz-Carlton, Capella, and Patina, in addition to a marina.

As a Marriott Bonvoy member I’m excited about the prospect of redeeming points here, though keep in mind that Ritz-Carlton doesn’t offer complimentary breakfast for elite members. It’s possible that the hotel may include breakfast for all guests, but I wouldn’t count on it.

Rendering of the Ritz-Carlton Maldives

The Ritz-Carlton’s location

On the plus side, it’s nice that the resort can be reached by speedboat, rather than requiring an additional flight, which can often require overnighting in Male. There’s something to be said about the convenience of that.

However, otherwise the location doesn’t sound that spectacular, at least as a relative matter:

  • This is part of an archipelago that includes three resorts, so it likely won’t feel quite as private as some of the resorts that have nothing else within miles
  • Don’t expect the reefs and general scenery to be as beautiful in the North Male Atoll as in other parts of the Maldives

The Park Hyatt Maldives, in the South of the Maldives

The Maldives has many amazing new points hotels

It really is incredible how many new luxury points hotels there are in the Maldives. I remember when the Park Hyatt Maldives was one of the few luxury points redemption options in the Maldives and now we have so many more options, like the St. Regis and Waldorf Astoria. Then there are all kinds of great upper mid range properties like the JW Marriott, the Westin, and more.

The St. Regis Maldives

Bottom line

The 100 villa Ritz-Carlton Maldives is expected to open in late 2020, though I wouldn’t be surprised to see the timeline slip in light of everything going on. It’ll be great to have yet another points option in the Maldives.

On the plus side, the hotel will be near Male, which is convenient for transfers. I’d also expect the scenery to not be quite as picturesque as some other islands, especially since this will be part of a multi-hotel archipelago.

Comments
  1. What’s wrong with this atoll? And how will they make the three resorts in one thing work? Surprised this resort got the Ritz branding vs. a stand alone resort in a better location. just waiting on a luxury collection property in the Maldives now.

  2. Based on that picture, guessing that’s just the Ritz? Where are the other two resorts that they are talking about? How will they all interlink? Different islands with a boat?

  3. Seems like a bad investment to buy property in the Maldives with the way the sea level is rising.

  4. This was meant to be the Patina Fari Islands…

    Patina was PontiacLand’s failed luxury hotel brand. After Patina Singapore was written off due to some sort of dispute (opened as the Kempinski instead), Patina’s failure to actually operate as a hotel brand led to this project being reflagged.

  5. @Roberto
    Just have a look at what all the rich ‘climate-change’-shills are doing, not at what they are saying. Everyone building & buying oceanfront properties with their money.

    “Do as I say, not as I do.”

    @Eskimo
    Be careful with the fantasy foreign currency exchange fee (up to 12%!!!) that Marriott is charging if you use the gift cards outside of the US.

  6. Looks like this will be a Patina and a Capella as well. Plus the Ritz to make it three resorts. Have no clue how it will work. Three different islands that you can take a boat to? Guessing it’s not three hotels on the same island. And doubt there will be a bridge.

  7. This is entirely out of context, I just want to get some opinions. The Qatar airways deal lucky posted about yesterday is dead, the fare to Kyiv is no longer there. The silver lining is that Qatar airways policy of 5000 mile rescheduling still exists. Does anyone know some relatively low priced Qatar airways destinations in biz class. Like in the 2000-2500 range?

  8. Looks nice, but we love the Ritz South Beach, outstanding service at every-stay, very easy to get to from NYC and an amazing locaiton in Miami Beach.

  9. If you google Patina Maldives and look at Googlemaps you can see the hotel under construction south east of Patina. The outline of the over water villas faces north toward patina. There does seem to be a fair amount of room between islands (around a mile).

  10. @Roberto –

    You don’t think Marriott execs used this to their advantage? Certainly I’m sure they scored a heck of a deal.

    But I guess you know better.

  11. “The Maldives has many amazing new points hotels”

    I was in the Maldives back in January, my first time there. I was appalled.

    The place was as crowded (and as crass) as the Las Vegas strip, Orlando or any other low-end, package resort location. The water was filthy, with gas/oil sheen often visible on the surface, plastic and garbage floating and washing up on the beaches. Prices were hilarious (I saw sunscreen in an airport shop being sold for US$38 for a small container), quality of most things looked low, and the place was just crowded, crowded, crowded. I spent a week on a dive boat and the diving was just OK, but not spectacular.

    I was glad to have checked “go scuba diving for a week in the Maldives” off my list, but I wouldn’t go back, and honestly, I just did not find the place compelling at all, certainly not worth the expense and the trouble to get there (even when spending points). The trash problem was hard to ignore – you could see the Garbage Island burning from many miles away and the air around Male smelled awful (google “Maldives+garbage+island” for a real eye opener). I’m sure it comes as a shock to most Americans (who have to work hard to get there) but the Maldives is no longer an exclusive, only-for-the-rich destination; it’s mass tourism at its worst. There are cheap package tours from India and China (and Europe), lots of old, fat Russian men with their mistresses in tow, the place is crowded, and it just seemed so crass and low-class. My impression is that people go there to just impress their friends.

    I’ve come to conclude that the Maldives may have been like paradise 20-30 years ago, but now it makes a perfect example of “paradise lost” due to runaway overtourism. Covid may thin out the crowds for a little while, but I can think of a lot of much better places to spend time on a tropical beach (and for a fraction of the cost).

  12. Gee, Dick. You managed to squander what for most all of us is a dream trip to a true icon of sustainable, luxurious beauty by hanging out for a week in Male, the capital and commercial center of a third world county noted for the beauty on its far-off atolls. With800 islands spread out in atolls stretching like pearls dropped into a turquoise ocean for 1,000 miles, you picked the one with 100,000 people crammed into a 1950s-esque urban conglomeration rather than the deserted sugar-sand islets you COULD have been sipping a beverage on between explorations of their reef and a dive trip out to any number of unspoiled underwater paradises. Either you are the most inept, research-averse traveler extant in 2020, or your poor experience related here is a deliberate attempt to keep the uninitiated from traveling to one of the world’s most expensive and most exclusive naturally gorgeous places. Fine with me—- a few less “travelers” looking for a package holiday to ride a stinkpot out for a couple dive days from Male and just check off a new country would suit me fine. It might keep the rabble of badly behaved rug rats with giant blowup swans with Dad’s peeping drones back in Daytona. Different strokes for different folks— I’ll stick to my solitude and gorgeous unspoiled lagoon, a $500 seaplane ride away from the international airport, and just pray you don’t figure out what the rest of us are enjoying.

  13. @Max got any specific examples of “rich climate change shills” or are just repeating talking points fed to you by your oil industry overlords? Lol!

  14. @Dick visits one place in the Maldives and “was appalled.” Give me a break. That’s like visiting NYC and saying you hate the US because it’s so dirty. @SST nailed all of the other points. I just hope you realize how utterly ridiculous your statement was.

    Go stay at Cheval Blanc next time and see how your comments hold up.

  15. SST: Hilarious. No, you misunderstand completely. The only time I spent in Male was in/around the airport. I did not go into the city at all. I spent the majority of my time on a 5-star luxury live-aboard scuba dive boat, way, way out, and in the water around the remote atolls. I had no complaints about the accommodations on our boat – it was a brand new boat with all the comforts you could imagine, everything on the boat was awesome. We stopped briefly at several small (remote) atolls, and I got a close up view of a couple resorts. It struck me as mass tourism at its worst – highly packaged, highly priced, not at all worth what they were charging. The quality of the resorts were similar to what I’ve seen at many Caribbean resorts. Beaches varied from pretty good to yuck. Overall, just OK, nothing special except the prices and difficulty of getting there. I spent several hours at the airport both inbound and outbound, and that was an eye-opener. Watched many, many people coming and going, getting picked up/dropped off by their resorts. Didn’t look like the high-rollers I expected at all. While the scuba diving out on the remote atolls was OK, at times pretty good, it was no better than many places I’ve dived before (including close-by to the US), and a lot worse than many, too. The natural environment in the Maldives is far from pristine, despite it’s remoteness – I saw a lot of trash in the water, even very, very far from Male. Close to Male, black gobs of oil in the water and a sheen on top.

    Ironic you use the term “sustainable” to describe this place. It is the opposite of that. You should check out the Garbage Island for a reality check (you can see it burning from miles away, long before you can see Male, from either your inbound flight or from a boat…it burns 24/7/365, and looks like something out of a nightmare). But there’s a LOT of money to be made, so…everybody shrugs.

    If all you want to do is lay in the sun at a resort and post selfies on social media to make your friends envious (and honestly, I think that has a lot of appeal for a lot of people), you may have a wonderful time there. I was quite turned off by the machine-like quality of the place. It reminded me of Las Vegas or Orlando more than anyplace else. The airport was overwhelmed with people – there are so many flights, inbound flights were backed up for hours (holding in the air) because there’s not enough room to park all the planes. I was told this was routine.

    I would not have been happy there on an island for a week; I was content on the dive boat (doing 3-4 dives a day, so that keeps you busy: dive, eat, dive, eat, dive, eat, maybe dive again, sleep, repeat…). We saw some interesting wildlife underwater, including some of the signature megafauna species that make divers go ooo and ah, though none of those were new to me (I’ll admit, I’m spoiled, having been diving in other, better places). The marine life was OK, sometimes good, sometimes not, that’s life. The visibility was not particularly good.

    I have no desire to burst your bubble, but if I had gone to all that trouble and expense to go there, I would have felt disappointed. I was in Bangkok anyway, so it was just a short hop for me, and as I said, the diving was pretty good and the boat was fine. But there’s a whole industry (including the website you are now reading) that depends on making the Maldives sound like the greatest place on earth and making you feel like your life sucks if you don’t go there. That’s just nonsense. It’s a tropical island, so it’s not exactly hellish, but it’s very, very touristy and from what I saw, hardly worth all the trouble or expense. As I said, I’m glad we went (wife seemed to enjoy hearing all her co-workers jealously gushing), but it really ain’t all the marketeers want you to think it is.

    If going there makes you happy, great. I have other places I liked so much more. If you think it’s the most beautiful place you can ever experience…I’d say you need to widen your view a bit IMHO – but tastes vary. Happy trails.

  16. @ your saying it’s over rated yet you never stayed at a actual resort like a Waldorf , I agree with you about the jealousy Instagram posting its beyond pathetic but how can you say the place it trash when your on a boat and not actually there?

  17. We should give @Dick some benefit of the doubt. There are a lot of travelers/honeymooners who can’t afford the $1,000 night villas and their perception and experience of Maldives will be totally different. I was surprised to hear from some friends that a lot of resorts closer to Male allow day tripping insta junkies and there are tons of new resorts catering to this price range. Maldives just isn’t as exclusive as it used to be.
    I most recently visited Maldives in Nov last year (Six Senses is my usual haunt) and hadn’t been back since 5 years. I was shocked to see how bad the effects of coral bleaching were and speaking to the marine biologists, they said the entire Maldivian archipelago had probably suffered 70-80% damage since the mass event. It’s taken it’s toll on larger marine species too – manta rays and whale sharks are much rarer seen. For first time visitors it may look like pristine waters but the Maldives I remember with brilliant corals is long gone.. Whoever says global warming is fake should go to the Maldives to see this. If you’re looking for ultralux overwater villas then Maldives is definitely the place but if you’re there to also appreciate the natural wonders of marine life, sadly it’s gone.

  18. @Dick, any place in the Maldives that is within reasonable reach of a boat from Male is not luxurious. Period. That’s why most of the actually exclusive hotels are at least an hour’s seaplane ride away. Or even a domestic flight plus speedboat ride.

    If you spent a week on board a “luxury live-aboard scuba dive boat” that departed Male, then it means that (at most) you travelled 3 days away from it at a relatively low speed before turning back. At 10 knots and only 3-4 hours of travelling each day at most (surely the boat was moored for scuba diving, with several diving stops each day, and anchored while you slept), that means you travelled no more than 100 miles away from Male – and that’s being generous. Looking at travel.padi.com, 7-day liveaboard cruises never really leave the general area around the Male and Ari atolls (North and South).

    So please, don’t speak for the entirety of the Maldives based on your experience. The whole country spans over 600 miles north to south, you stayed within a 100-mile area of Male if at all. And please also accept you simply missed out on the best the Maldives has to offer: the really upscale villa resorts in private islands on faraway atolls with coral reef and crystal-clear waters.

  19. It isn’t very good for redeeming but Soneva Jani and Soneva Fushi are some of the most incredible resorts in the Maldives if you get the chance to visit please do

  20. So this is going to be a 3 hotel man made island atoll development consisting of a Capella, Patina (no idea what that exactly means) and The Ritz-Carlton. Approximately 50+ km from Male.

    The development consists of 3 separate islands with a hotel on each. Added benefit would be as an “integrated resort” that you can hop from one island to the next and experience another hotel.

    To be perfectly honest I kinda agree with Dick about the Maldives, it’s high end mass tourism for bucket listerst. The beaches in most of the places that I’ve had the pleasure to visit are nothing special as the vast majority of the islands are man made which typically means they’re rock hard.

    Coral bleaching is a thing and yes the aquatic conditions seem to get worse by the year. Never in the history of this planet have there been as many boats, planes, land activity, dredging, you name it in the Maldives and if we think this is not going to take a toll on nature than who are we fooling?

    The Maldives has done an amazing job at marketing itself and becoming that bucket list destination, whether it’s deserved or not you can make your own mind up. For me there is at least 5 different locations in Asia alone where I’d go for spectacular diving. The hotels are nice but the food is flown in from thousands of miles and any chef worth his salt will give you the thumbs down for that.

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