Le Méridien Hotels & Resorts Lands in the Maldives With Opening of Le Méridien Maldives Resort & Spa

Maldives, Thilamaafushi, Lhaviyani Atoll. October 07, 2021

Le Méridien Hotels & Resorts, part of Marriott Bonvoy's portfolio of 30 extraordinary brands, along with Singaporean developer Chiu Teng Enterprises announce the opening of Le Méridien Maldives Resort & Spa, marking the Paris-born brand's debut in one of the world's most captivating destinations. Located on Thilamaafushi, the southern pocket of Lhaviyani Atoll, the 141-villa resort celebrates the fabric of the Maldives, its people, nature and art, channeling its energy to uncover the charm of the destination through Le Méridien's distinctive European-chic lens.

"With a nostalgic nod to the glamour of the French Riviera in the 1960s, Le Méridien inspires travellers to explore the world in style, savour the good life and enjoy experiences that offer something more than meets the eye," said Jason Nuell, Senior Vice President, Premium Brands, Marriott International. "We are delighted to bring Le Méridien to this internationally desired destination, the perfect place for guests to step out of their daily routine and into a glamorous getaway where wandering sans agenda and lingering longer are encouraged."

Spanning nine hectares, Thilamaafushi is defined as "island surrounded by vast lagoon" in Dhivehi, the local parlance of the Maldives. The natural island is an eco-conscious haven abundant with indigenous flora and fauna, enveloped by a shimmering lagoon and coral reefs bursting with vibrant marine life, including pods of Manta Rays and turtles. Guests can easily access the resort by a 35-minute seaplane journey north of Velana (MLE) International Airport, Malé.

"We are thrilled to introduce the iconic Le Méridien brand to the Maldives, strengthening our presence in this captivating destination," Rajeev Menon, President, Asia Pacific (excluding China), Marriott International. "The opening of Le Méridien Maldives Resort & Spa marks the second Marriott International property that opened in the Maldives this summer and the seventh brand entry in the destination. We look forward to expanding our portfolio further in the Maldives in order to offer distinctive and personalized experiences for travelers."

Timeless Chic Design

The distinct timeless chic design at Le Méridien Maldives Resort & Spa is inspired by the brand's roots in the glamorous halcyon days of travel, something that permeates throughout the Le Méridien experience. In a nod to its environment, the design also takes inspiration from the formation of the Maldives Archipelago, emulating the Atoll's unique topography, its bordering reefs, coral gardens, marine life and underwater pinnacles known as "Thilas". Interior and exterior design celebrates the Maldives' distinct life and culture and vibrant landscape, fused with Le Méridien's signature mid-century modern and Bauhaus aesthetics to present a resort that sits in harmony with the natural environment.

The resort presents 141 villas that are tucked amongst the tropical landscape and dotted over the Indian Ocean, featuring unparalleled views across the pristine beaches, the Indian Ocean or turquoise lagoon. A selection of one, two and three-bedroom villas unites the concept of art and industrial design with clean lines, a muted color palette and a contrast of renewable materials that fosters simplicity, openness and functionality. Guests can also relax and rejuvenate at the Explore Spa by Le Méridien and the two infinity pools at the resort.

Global Flavours with Local Flair

Guests will have the opportunity to indulge in six restaurants and bars, showcasing global tastes and locally harvested produce. Inspired by Japanese fishing villages and water lanterns, the signature restaurant Tabemasu features a lively teppanyaki counter and a private open-air pavilion where guests will enjoy an expertly prepared Omakase tasting menu. The resort's adults only bar, Riviera, is a beachside playground framed by an oceanfront infinity pool and private beach where lazy lunches flow into sunset spritzes as vivid hues are splashed across the ocean. The shores that frame Riviera will be the locale where Le Méridien's signature brand programme "Au Soleil" will be hosted as part of the resort's weekly culinary events.

"Au Soleil" at Le Méridien Maldives Resort & Spa encourages a summer state of mind with an activation at "Golden Hour", the magical hour at the end of a day under the sun where guests will enjoy European-inspired petit plates, specially designed rosé cocktails and Le Scoop by Le Méridien handcrafted gelato or sorbet, set against a soundtrack of live music and waves lapping at the shore.

Located amongst the banyan trees and swaying palms, Waves Café is a mindful eating space that fosters a healthy and nourishing approach with a focus on organic farm-to-table ingredients. Velaa Bar + Grill, situated poolside, features crafted cocktails and light dishes to savour in the summer sun, and grilled seafood, meats and wood-fired delicacies to indulge in once the last ray's fade. The Le Méridien Hub, a social gathering place for the creative-minded traveller, serves custom-brewed, barista-crafted coffee beverages as part of the brand's collaboration with illy coffee. Rounding out the culinary mix is Turquoise, a beachside marketplace where guests can choose from an array of global tastes and local dishes from breakfast to dinner.

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Coming up in September 2022...

Hotel Group Meetings: The Great Outdoors


There is some welcome good news in the Hotel Group Meetings sector. There seems to be a resurgence in activity - across all sectors and all sizes - from small board meetings to large in-person groups. However, hotels must remain flexible and proactive, as they seek to provide venues and programs that are productive, comfortable, and safe to all parties. One major development is the expansion of outdoor meeting activities. This trend not only serves to meet regulatory health standards, but it also promotes an environment of well-being. According to a recent study from WorldHealth.net, spending just 29 minutes outdoors can result in a 45% increase in productivity; and 63% of employees reportedly felt invigorated after being in fresh air. Combined with guided physical activities and healthy food and beverage offerings, a sense of wellness and productivity are established. The September Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to accommodate the revitalization of group meeting business in their operations.