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Ellaidhoo Maldives by Cinnamon
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All reviewsbeach bungalowdive centresea wallpool attendantmain barfishour waitersea planeother islandspool barcurriessuperior roomroom boygarden roomdive schoolmain beachspeedboat transfer
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Reviewed 1 December 2010

From the friendliness of the staff to the excellent food and amazing experiences on the reef, this was a holiday to remember. We took our shoes off on arrival and never had occasion to put them back on (not even flipflops). Although I do recommend reef shoes in the lagoon at low tide.
We're regular visitors to the Maldives and are forever in search of the perfect experience for us.
An excellent house reef is always a primary concern and Ellaidhoo surpassed our expectations. An amazing house reef that is close to shore and surrounds the island made up for the initial concerns about limited beach areas. We were lucky enough to have a beach bungalow right on the beach (not all are).
The best part of the reef is actually in the area where at 5.30pm every day the staff feed the stingrays in the lagoon closest to the main bar. For the brave this affords the opportunity to swim with huge rays, jacks, blue fin tuna, sharks and the odd rather large moray eels. Rays and sharks are frequently seen as you snorkel along the reef and I also had the chance to swim with a turtle - who was a little more difficult to find.

Ellaidhoo is only 25 mins by seaplane from Male and you are met at the jetty by the staff, who work hard to ensure you have a "home from home" experience.

The food was fantastic with an incredible choice for every meal. I personally found myself living on the amazing curries, pickles, interesting salads (sometimes spicy), coconut and sambals - even for breakfast. For the less adventurous, there was always local fish, freshly cooked very good meats (the "roast beef" is actually steak), stirfries and pasta. The housewine was (surprisingly for the Maldives) fantastic; although many drank the chilled Sri Lankan beer that went so well with the local and SriLanken fare.

The bar staff were particularly good, which made the evenings and odd daytime drink a pleasure and something to look forward to. I don't know whether its because the island is small, or the friendliness and good humour of the staff was infectious, but everyone on the island was friendly, whatever nationality, and you soon got to know everyone.

The night-time shark feeding from a dhoni (10.30pm) is a must and quite addictive and good value at only $10. Its only half an hour, but quite an experience.

Also the crab-racing is a must. $5 a crab (3for $10) seemed a bit steep at first, but the hilarity of this once weekly event is a must.

Its a shame we never made use of the excellent sports and spa facilities at the centre of the island - fully equipped gym, squash court, tennis courts, billiards room, but I'm sure we will next time.

Our two weeks holiday sped by. We were never bored and could quite easily have stayed a further two weeks. We're already booking our next trip.

  • Stayed: November 2010
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3  Thank NJD479
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 November 2010

As a frequent visitor to the Maldives over a period of almost 20 years, I have accepted the wisdom of taking some of the reviews on trip advisor with a "pinch of salt". A recent review suggests that some of the staff at this resort appeared to be unhappy; rather distant to some of the guests; and a suggestion of racism. Do not let such reviews put you off from visiting this island. In our personal experience, nothing could be further from the truth. During our stay of over 3 weeks we both encountered a natural and genuine warmth and frienlines from all of the staff without exception. Every greeting we made to staff was reciprocated with a warm smile and response. It cuts both ways; how you treat the staff will deem what reaction you receive from them. Treat people well and with respect, and it is usually reciprocated. The tone at this island is set by the warm greeting each guest receives on arrival from the management team. For us, that tone continued throughout the stay. I could fault nothing at all about Chaaya Reef or our holiday. The sea was warm and blue, and the snorkelling first class.The high standards and level of service we received were evident in every aspect of our holiday. Excellent food, with lots of variety. A high level of professionalism was delivered by all staff without exception. Prem the manager, and his excellent management team have most certainly made their mark on this island, and we will certainly return. A big thank you to Waseem our waiter and our room boy Ikram for their excellent and attentive service. Thanks also to the staff at the pool and gym, and the main bar and pool bar.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank reddevilCheshireuk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 November 2010

This was our second trip to Chaaya Reef Ellaidhoo despite a basic rule of never going back to the same place twice! We went the same time last year and, because we had such a wonderful time, returned again this year. We will come back time and time again.

The staff all make you feel really special with big smiles and 'hello's' where ever you are. Nothing is too much trouble for anyone from the room boys to the General Manager. They all work hard to provide you with the best holiday possible and don't disappoint!

The restaurants provide a high quality of food of all types at all meal times under the careful eye of Executive Chef Viswajith. He clearly has high standards as the food is delicious, the presentation outstanding and the service by the chef's, excellent.

The rooms are cleaned daily and there are multi sockets plugs, tea and coffee facilities (generously replaced) and mosquito repellers provided. We stayed in both a beach bungalow and a water bungalow and both were superb - the beach bungalow because of its proximity to the beach and the water bungalow because of what you can see from your balcony!

We had another fantastic holiday at Chaaya Reef Ellaidhoo - excellent diving, well equipped gym, relaxing spa and caring members of staff. I must mention Donald - the food and beverage Manager who always has time to speak to everyone despite obviously being very busy - even when sitting having a cup of tea and a well earned break. Gamini and his colleague at the sunset bar also deserve a mention - friendly, chatty and excellent bar staff.

Most importantly Prem, the General Manager, who aims to meet all guests and genuinely wants feedback to make things even better although I don't quite know what more could be done to make this island any better.

I would recommend this holiday destination without hesitation.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled with friends
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1  Thank TheRalphies
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 November 2010

My son and I visited Chaaya Reef for a week from 4 November.

We'd looked at the reviews on Trip Advisor which seemed to suggest that this was a great little island with very glowing reviews. Well, I'm pleased to say that for a first visit to the Maldives that this island did not disappoint. Great snorkelling, great accomodation, very friendly / attentive staff (particularly the bar staff in the pool bar).

We went the week after the schools half term and we were suprised to find that my son, who is 12 years old, was the only kid on the island that was over about 4 for pretty much the entire time we were there. The island is clearly a mecca for divers with what seemed like a very busy and well equipped dive centre. There is a welll equipped spa and fitness centre. The rooms all seem nicely done, particularly the beach bungalows and superior rooms. Some garden rooms, particularly those behind the dive centre looked a little dark and dingy from the outside so watch which ones you ask for if you select one of these. Superior rooms were nicely equipped but suggest you ask for a second storey one, we had a ground floor one which was fine but some noisey guests turned up above us on the last day of our stay. The beach bungalows look fab and some are literally on the waters edge.

The snorkeling is great with a safe area, alebit shallow when the tide is out, between the outer wall and the waters edge. The reef is excellent with an impressive drop off. The water 'feels' a little shallow outside of the main wall in some areas and a few guests were sporting various gashes were they had come into contact with the coral. One thing to be aware of is that the currents can be quite strong outside the wall when the tide is running. The dive centre give advice on the best time to snorkell and what to do etc to check the currents before venturing out - well worth a chat with them before you go in the first time ! There are ropes for the divers to guide them to the drop off and back and these are really useful for snorkelling as they mark the gaps between the wall to get back in to the beach.

Sun beds are plentiful and right outside your room for the beach bungalows and superior rooms.

Food good and varied although after 2 weeks I suspect you may be getting a little bored.

Evening fishing and shark feeding well worth it.

Judging by the prices on the bar list I think that All Inclusive is a good option particularly if you like a good drink in the evenings.

I would definately go back to the Maldives and would be very happy to return to Elliadhoo. Only thing we would have liked is the option to do some other water sports on the island - sailing would be a great addition.

Overall I would highly recommend this resort.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled with family
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Thank JubeSouthWales
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 November 2010

Just returned from our second holiday at Ellaidhoo this year. We stayed for two weeks in June and have just had another wonderful week. This Island is Paradise. We were greeted on our arrival by management and staff. Word soon got around that we had returned and we were treated like old friends.
We took the sea plane transfer which is a must. Make sure that you upgrade before you travel. The check in is trouble free and done while sipping a ice cold drink and mopping your weiry brow with an ice cold flannel.
We made our way to the same room as we stayed in on our last visit, just one of the many small but lovely touches sorted for us by the wonderful management and staff. We were also given the same table in the restaurant.
The island has under gone some really impressive improvements in the few months since we were last there. The general manager is very eager to make the very best of the island, the garden areas at the centre of the island have been thinned out and tidied up, small plants line the pathways and the main bar area has been painted to brighten it up. Well done to all the boys as their hard work has really paid off. The island is looking really good.
The beach is amazing and never fails to impress, the powder soft white sand and clear seas will take your breath away, this island also has an wonderful infinity pool where you can spend hours just gazing into the lagoon watching the fish go by. Its like having your own private aquarium. Total chill time. Our friend the pool boy takes great pride in his job and it shows.
We stayed in the water villas which are wonderful, and in the process of being re-decorated. They are so determined to make the place as good as is possible.
The staff are amazing and really make you feel at home. Nothing is too much trouble for them. Take time to chat with the bar staff or your waiter as the boys are the best. They have amazing stories of their homes and families and love to take time to get to know you. We have made some friendships which will last forever.
Donald is as everyone sais a superstar and spends his whole day looking after everyone. He and all the boys are a real credit to the island.
Prem the general manager really cares that you have the best time and is always out and about chatting and making sure everyone is happy.
The food is great and the chefs do a top job. Everything in the restaurant for the water villas is cooked to order so is always hot and fresh. Again all prepared and served with cheerfull smiles. The bar staff are the best and always on the look out for empty glasses.
If you are looking to visit the Maldives try Ellaidhoo, we have been to the Maldives six times now and will be going back to this island for a third visit. We feel like we have real friends there.
Thanks to you all for looking after us so well and look forward to seeing you all again. You guys make this Island so special.
Dont hesitate to book this Island and you will not be disappointed. Need any information, just email us.
H and J

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Beddys
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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