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“could use some maintenance”
Review of Asdu Sun Island

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Asdu Sun Island
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Asdhoo Island
Certificate of Excellence
Prata di Pordenone, Italy
Level Contributor
144 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 79 helpful votes
“could use some maintenance”
Reviewed 27 November 2012

this was our 5th visit to the Maldives (Fihalhohi, Full Moon, Vilu Reef, Ellaidhoo). We specifically look for a simple, small island because all we want to do is dive. No need for a pool or spa. This is getting to be a big challenge, it seems. We were glad, when we found Asdu. This is truly a 'no frills' island. However, at the most a 3*. When we arrived, we were at first kind of taken aback. Reception area and restaurant could use some maintenance. The roof looked like it had seen better days. The same feeling when we saw our room. It was just old. Sheets didn't look white, but yellowish from having been used a lot. There is only one brown towel per person. It, too, was worn and didn't smell clean. We knew there wouldn't be any beach towels so we brought our own. Reading through the various forums, we knew to also expect some insects. I brought a fly swatter which came in handy for the big ants in the bathroom.
The worst thing was probably the noise from birds and bats starting exactly at 4:30 in the morning. They were really loud and woke us up every morning. Annoying! We asked the owner of the island about this and he said it was part of the Maldivian flair. We had never experienced this on any of the other islands we visited. After all, on vacation one wants to sleep in a little and not wake up even earlier than usually.
Food: breakfast is basically non existent. No buffet! A couple of slices of toast are brought to the table with some undeterminable marmelade, some butter, cake and fruit like an apple cut in 6 wedges. I am not a sweet tooth when it comes to breakfast so there was nothing for me. I did find out, though, that i could order an egg. So every morning I had fried egg on toast ;-)
The other meals were in buffet form. Not a whole lot of different dishes because the nice thing about this island is that there are at the most 60 people when booked completely which it wasn't. There were about half that many people. Food was really good. Well prepared and tasty!
Diving: this was the worst diving of all 5 islands we've experienced; if you can call diving the Maldives bad, that is. Very little soft coral so not a whole lot of colors. House reef was nothing to write home about! The best dive we did there was Meeru Reef. We even went twice since colors were really nice there. No big fish but lots of smaller ones and lots to see.
What made this vacation a nice one after all were the people. Due to the size of the island, you got to know just about everyone, sit together after dinner and have a good time. This was probably the best company we've ever had on vacation. There are mainly Italians on this island. We live in Italy and speak the language so it wasn't hard to mingle.
This small island is for you if you don't expect any luxury; if you don't mind nature's early morning noises; if you like good food and a laid back atmosphere.

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Anna H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Norwegian first
  • Polish first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Paris, France
Level Contributor
113 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 June 2012

I stayed on Asdu for 16 days starting May 1st, 2012.
Above water: We had 2 rooms, 114 & 115 : they were spacious, clean and simple and it is honestly all that I care for when I travel. If you require luxury, dancing and dozens of activities, Asdu is not an island for you, it is quiet and simple, a great place to relax and unwind.
I read somewhere that it is moonson season over there at that time, but we had 30 min of rain and one day with clouds...
Otherwise many said that the food was not copious, or always the same. I can testify that it is copious enough (I have a pretty good appetite). We always got rice and/or pasta and/or potatoes but it is the case on all of the islands I did in the Maldives. We mostly had fish and a bit of chicken once in a while but it was good (especially the day we had indian dishes :-)!). We had pizza (many Italian clients on Asdu) and pies quite often too, and mostly fresh fruit (or otherwise canned fruit) for dessert and ice cream once a week.
There is no AC but a ceiling fan which is enough and for those fearing the lack of hot water, given the temperature, the water is never cold.
Underwater:... it is AMAZING. On the south side of the reef it is nice but on the North side it is nearly as beautiful as the Maldives were all over before El Nino. I saw all the usual fishes, plus sting rays, sharks, Napoleons, spotted and non spotted eagle-rays, turttles, etc. The coral is amazing, so many kinds, so many shapes & colors, etc. It is a snorkelers' paradise. The reef is very long and you can spend more than 2 hours in the water without reaching the end. Even for the divers, diving around the reef must be quite exciting. Some strong currents with the inversion of tides so those not being good swimmers have to be careful.
For those needing more activities that swimming, there are canoes on the island, anyone can use them (free) and go paddling.
I would highly recommend Asdu for those who like quietness, simplicity and a great reef.

Room Tip: 132, more windy (and it is good in a warm country), right next to the best place to go snorkeling...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
11 Thank ParisianAgnes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
182 reviews
87 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 122 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 March 2012

We were seeking a resort in the Maldives which did not have motorised water sport, did not have a pool, did not have bar fridges, air conditioning or over water bungalows. All those features seemed to be at odds with the ethos of Maldives - a nation that is already so much at risk with climate change. Asdu Sun Island, one of the only resorts owned and operated by Maldivians in the archipelago is just such a place. The rooms are simple but adequate , all are very close to the water - ours was 5 metres away from the shoreline, the resort facilities are simple but adequate (volleyball court, table tennis, kayaks) but the snorkelling on the house reef is fantastic, there are kayaks to go round the island which has a fully in tact mangrove system along one side and a beautiful sunset off each night off a spit on the island. The staff were friendly and relaxed and happy to chat, The food was not great but it was fine. You don't expect haute cuisine going to an island like this. Achmed the owner is intelligent and charming and the dive operation is good. The only issue we would have was that smoking is allowed in the restaurant and bar area and because 80-90% of guests are from Italy, a number of them smoke. And it is an easy 30 minute boat ride from the Male airport. A great option for anyone seeking a simple tropical island experience.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank JTMSydneyLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Florence
Level Contributor
59 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 February 2012

Without going into the usual superlatives bestowed upon the lovely Maldives, I will just say that Asdu is a good resort for a first trip to the Maldives. The whole island has a very 'village' atmosphere, laid-back and informal. Time seems to pass by slowly, and that actually isn't a bad thing if you want to take a break from the frenetic modern city lifestyle. Seemingly mundane activities like watching the sunset and gazing at the stars can be stunningly significant and meaningful. Cast aside your compulsions of checking emails, downloading apps (for those with an iPhone, iPad, or Android device) and needing to do something all the time. This is a place for relaxing and living the life we used to have as a child - simple and carefree.

I'll start with the bad. A lot of people already mentioned this - the lack of hot water for shower, no TV and no aircon in the room. For the latter two, I'm actually glad for their absence. TV signifies a part of city noise for me, and aircon makes me sick. Hot water, however, would have been appreciated. I was at Asdu in late January and the week was blessed by sunny, warm weather. Despite this, I felt that the water was a little cold. It took time to get used to. What if it was a rainy, cloudy week? I doubt that the water would seem so refreshing. I come from a tropical, very hot and humid country and I've always showered with hot water mixed with lukewarm water. Contrary to popular beliefs, I know.

We had the misfortune and adventure of having a few cockroaches and beetles enter in our room by chance (we asked around and none of the other guests seemed to have the same problem), and frankly, the sight of a cockroach moving its antenna in the middle of the room after dinner kinda put me off. I like nature, but I've always thought that cockroaches were something else altogether.

Now the good stuff. The great, friendly, and helpful staff. They all work extremely long hours and are so kind and funny. I think they deserve a few days off every month. They are the 'stars' of the resort; they make things flow and their hospitality contributes to the nice atmosphere.

The resort is surrounded by beautiful shallow lagoons all around, and there are high and low tides. I found it a little windy most of the time, and the currents were quite strong for snorkelers without fins. There are little fishes that jump in the air when predators attack, and it makes for a real spectacle when this happens (frequently, mostly at sunset). The house reefs are quite easily accessible, and there are plenty of colorful fishes. Kayaks are available for free at the beach, and we did a complete turn of the island.

Don't expect a mega buffet for lunch and dinner. Breakfast is an ordinary run of toasted bread, milk, coffee/tea, and a pastry that changes from day to day (eg. pancakes, buns). Lunch and dinner are subject to queuing up as the food is limited in variety. Rice, spaghetti, fish, vegetables, salad and bread are certainties. Every three days there is also a dessert, and thank all your gods and deities when that happens because it's a real rarity. It usually gives me a stomachache, but I eat it in any case.

The cacophony of crows and free-roaming roosters will keep you up all night and day, so I recommend a set or two of ear plugs.

In a nutshell, Asdu is a great place for travelers who are a little tight on the budget. You won't mind the things you'll miss out on, because, really, when you are in a fantastic place like this, swimming with fishes all day, what's there to complain about?

Just choose a good month to go and life's good.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank kittykyky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Aalborg, Denmark
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 December 2011

This island is a simple place with no cars, no motorbikes only transportation your feet. Acceptable food and outstanding service. Diving and fishing great. But bring your hardhat to avoid the coconuts :-)

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
2 Thank 9mbus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pretoria, South Africa
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 October 2011

On my first visit to the Maldives, my girlfriend and I visited Asdu. The resort offers a laid-back atmosphere with good service and rustic accommodation and is in my opinion perfect for a simple beach holiday. There is no aircon and no hot water, but in hindsight, I would not have wanted it any other way. The manager told me that they are under pressure from the Maldivian authorities to improve on their amenities and rooms, but they are trying to keep it just the way it is, which is the way it was...

The island measures 300m by 100m and can cater for about 50-60 guests. Meals are served in an open dining area, where you have a specific table allocated to you for the duration of your stay. The food was varied and interesting and we never left the table unsatisfied. It was nice to get to know some of the other guests (whom are mostly Italian). There is no entertainment available (which was great!), but we played volleyball daily at 4 pm with the staff and some of the other guests. After dinner, it was always a pleasure to chat to Wasantha, the friendly barman. The drinks were reasonably priced, but the selection was limited.

Like most of the Maldives, the island is surrounded by a coral reef. Most of our days were spent snorkelling and I found it incredible to free dive down along the reef - in some places it drops vertically from 3m to 30m. There is a very safe and beautiful coral pool to the north-west of the island, about 50 m from the beach. It is about the size of a half-size Olympic swimming pool and about 6m deep. It is only accessible through a small channel in the coral, but if you go looking for it, you will find it. You cannot go to Asdu and not snorkel! The underwater visibility and marine life is incredible.

We expected ants and mosquitoes to be a problem, but we found that they fumigate the shrubs once a week and they supply mozzie coils in the rooms. Typical to Tripadvisor, some people complain about the mozzies, others about the fumigation. We found neither to be of inconvenience, but take some repellent to be safe.

The only negative experience we had was with our boat transfer. Our flight landed at 09:00 am, but we had to wait for another couple whose flight was delayed to only arrive at 12:30, before we could depart from the airport. A slight inconvenience, but nobody's fault. That's travelling. The speedboat transfer takes about an hour and is very scenic. A seaplane hop would have been nice, but is probably not worth the price for such a short trip.

There are some chickens with attitude running around on the island, the flying foxes are something to see and at night time, some jungle noise take over. It all adds to the charm.

When I return to the Maldives, I will try to visit another island as well, but I will definitely return to Asdu too. Apparently you can get more for your money at some of the bigger resorts with spas and bands, but the question is, do you really want to?

  • Stayed February 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
8 Thank Gerhard_Lourens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 October 2011

We have stayed at Asdu three times over the last few years. It is cheap, friendly and quiet. No tv's, no air con, no hot water, but it is real. You don't feel you're being conned by a big international company. It is one of the oldest resorts and is run by a maldivian.... that is to say it is very relaxed. The house reef is like no other in the area and totally unspoilt. usually one pays a huge amount of money for the benefit of sharing an island with very few people, last week we shared the whole island with 9 other guests. It is a castaway island. One is not endlessly pampered with western comforts. The chickens that run around the island add to the charm. If you want tv's, fresh towels every 5 minutes and a sterile environment, don't go. If you want peace, a taste of the real maldives, excellent but simple food, educated guests and excellent value for money, go.

Room Tip: room 111 is the best on the island
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  • Stayed October 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank efw810
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Asdu Sun Island

Property: Asdu Sun Island
Address:
Region: Maldives > Kaafu Atoll > North Male Atoll > Asdhoo Island
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Asdhoo Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Asdu Sun Island 3*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Asdu is probably the smallest resort in the Maldives with an affordable price, apart from just one other more luxurious resort. This is by no means the cheapest resort. You may find other larger resorts of equal standard or of even better facilities with lower prices. We believe the small size of the Island ensures a certain degree of exclusivity, well worth the price we quote to our prospective guests. But we assure you that we have maintained a very consistent price structure over the last 10 years.This Island is especially ideal for those who love to be in a natural setting and prefer simplicity and informality on their vacation. Although the facilities are not deluxe, they are more than adequate and comfortable. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Asdu Sun Island Hotel North Male Atoll
Asdu Sun Island Resort
Sun Island Maldives

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