I will begin by saying that no matter how much praise I give Constance Halaveli, it will never be enough to fully capture how wonderful it is.
My husband and I knew we wanted to go somewhere tropical for our honeymoon and were both intrigued by the Maldives, even though we knew it would be a longgg trek from Vancouver, Canada. Nonetheless, we decided it was a once in a lifetime trip and that now was the time to do it. We researched different resorts on TripAdvisor endlessly for weeks, when we finally came across Constance Halaveli. What initially captured our attention about this resort was the spacious water villas and the private pool, which many other resorts didn't offer. We decided to take a gamble and book it not realizing what a goldmine we had come across.
When we first arrived in Male (the capital city), we were immediately transported to the Constance lounge, where we would wait until a seaplane was ready to pick us up. The lounge was beautiful, with tropical decor, free wifi, and a buffet of food and drinks. Unfortunately, there was a delay in seaplane arrival that day so our stay in the lounge was almost 3 hours, but the Halaveli staff was very accommodating and offered to make us a hot lunch because of the long delay, even though it was not their fault.
Once the seaplane came, we were immediately transported to our island, which took about 40 minutes. Personally, even though there is beautiful scenery along the way, I did not enjoy the sea plane as it is very tight, lacks air conditioning, and smells like gasoline. But, since this is the only way to get to our island, I would say it's well worth it!
My first impressions of the island are unforgettable. You see a lot of pictures while you're doing your research, but nothing compares to the feeling you get when you see the white sandy beach, crystal clear water and tall palm trees in person. It truly is like no other place on Earth! We were immediately greeted by the Halaveli management team when we landed and then given a tour of the island via golf cart. The island is a nice size, and has everything you would need: a gym, children's area, gift shop, a beach bar, three restaurants, a diving centre, a water sport centre, etc. I would say that it's a great choice for people who plan on spending most of their time there to relax (eg: honeymooners) over those who are craving a lively party atmosphere as you would get in Cancun, etc.
Our favourite part of the resort was our fabulous water villa #83! We were the last water villa on the odd side meaning we had the most amazing sunset view unobstructed by everything else. The villas are HUGE and have every ammenity you could dream of: huge shower, big bathtub overlooking the ocean, double sinks, double walk-in closets, a huge comfortable bed, flatscreen TV, ipod dock, endless movies on demand, music, books and a huge deck with two loungers under a large umbrella, an infinity pool and a small table for outdoor dining. We spent most of our vacation in the privacy of our own villa since it had everything we needed and more. Although it was about a 15 minute walk to the island from our villa, it was very easy to call reception and have a cart come and pick us up. Reception was very helpful and would do just about anything you asked of them. You never felt helpless at Constance Halaveli! The cleanliness of the room was immaculate and the room was tidied up twice a day for your comfort. We had an amazing room boy named Faiz who always ensured we were taken care of......his presentation of the room was amazing and we always knew when we had been to clean.
In terms of activities, I was satisfied with the variety, while others who are more into water sports may not be. We tried snorkelling a few times, which was fun, but we didn't get to see too many sea creatures since the current was quite strong. Snorkelling equipment was free to rent from the diving centre. All non-motorized water sports like paddle boating and kayaking were also free to rent, which were fun activities. Additionally, excursions were also offered a few times a day for additional costs. We went on the sunset cruise (AMAZING if it's a clear day), star-gazing cruise (also amazing on a clear day) and the dolphin cruise. All of those excursions took place on the same dhoni boat and became a bit repetitive after a while, even though they were all fun. I would recommend doing one or two only, maybe leaving out the dolphin cruise since you're not even guaranteed to see any (we didn't). There are also many other snorkelling and scuba diving excursions offered, but I can't say much about those since we never tried any. In terms of nightlife, there is no nightclub at Halaveli. We found the island to be quite dead in the evenings, with the exception of the restaurants in the early evening. One of the nights we were there, there was a sunset beach party on the island which was fun, but we found the overall vibe to be newlyweds who were quite happy to just keep to themselves. We also booked a spa treatment...a couples massage....which was amazing. The spa staff are professional and friendly and the whole experience is very enjoyable! Go a little early before your treatment so you can enjoy the hot and cold pools and the steam room.
Let's talk food. All of the restaurants were fantastic. The breakfast buffet at Jahaz everyday was consistently good, but it would have been nice to have a bit more of a change everyday as the menu got a little repetitive. The made to order omelettes were fantastic! We ate at Meeru once and their food was really good as well, catering heavily to meat eaters. Jing, which is the fancier restaurant, is one of the best dining experiences I've ever had. We had made reservations for our last evening and requested a table on the patio (which gives you a beautiful view of the water at night). The service was amazing and the food was even better....I highly recommend it for a nice dinner out! Other than that, we found that for lunches, it was very easy to have in-villa dining as it was cost-effective and nice for afternoons when you didn't want to leave the villa. The average cost of a main course in in-villa dining was about $25, and the portions were very generous. They are also very good at accommodating your tastes and you can pretty well ask for anything even if it's not on the menu.
The staff is accomodating on a whole new level. Everyone treats you like family and says hello and calls you by name. They are more than willing to help you with whatever you need and make sure you are comfortable.
The worst part of our vacation was leaving. It was so difficult leaving a place like Halaveli knowing that it might be a while before you come back. Unfortunately, they weren't able to offer us late checkout which we had requested since we had an evening flight, but this is understandable as occupancy is high. However, they did have a waiting lounge for us to wait in, which had snacks, books, computer, wifi, etc. As usual, our seaplane was late, but again, this had nothing to do with Halaveli, as Maldivian Air is an independant company.
Overall, I can't express what a fabulous vacation choice this resort it, especially for a honeymooning couple like us. You get so much privacy that sometimes it feels like no one else is on the island but you. The service is unbelievable and you get treated like royalty. And not to be biased, but I suspect that Halaveli might have the nicest water villas in the Maldives, because I don't see how anything could be better. Well worth the 25 hours of travel to get there!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Luxurious hideaway, intimate and magical setting; choose from one of the 57 Water Villas, 10 Beach Villas, 10 Family Beach Villas, 8 Double Storey Beach Villas or the lavish Presidential Beach Villa at Constance Halaveli Maldives. Experience luxury living at Constance Halaveli and enjoy the hotel’s private island setting in the Maldives’ North Ari Atoll. Stroll down white sandy beaches and swim in turquoise water teeming with colourful marine life while children can unleash their spirit of adventure at the Constance Kids Club. Lie back and relax on your own private sun terrace, dip in your own plunge pool, or take time to nurture body and mind at U Spa by Constance.Floating in the North Ari atoll and shaped like a curved Dhoni; (Maldivian boat) Constance Halaveli is a magical place where water and sand lie in contrast to the exuberant green foliage. Indulge in fine food and sumptuous flavours at Jahaz, Jing and Meeru restaurants For palate pleasing cocktails; divine vinous experiences, step in Jahaz, Jing Bar & Wine Cellars Be prepared for a memorable escape at Constance Halaveli Maldives! For ultimate comfort, all villas come with high raftered ceiling, their own private plunge pool and furnished terrace. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Constance Halaveli Hotel Alifu Atoll