Ayada Maldives Resort opens: First Turkish-themed luxury resort in the region

With a remote location near the equator, the 112-room Ayada Maldives Resort is now opening, bringing the first Turkish-themed resort to the Maldives. Developed by the Ankara, Turkey-based Aydeniz Group, this is a serious 5-star-plus resort that should compete well among super-luxury Maldives resorts.

From the decorations in each room to the Turkish hammam with plunge pools to the Turkish cafe (one of 7 restaurants and bars), the theme makes the Ayada Maldives a unique entrant in this category and one of the few resorts in the country meant to conjure up imagery other than the tropics themselves. [read more]

About overwater bungalows and water villas

First introduced in the South Pacific only a few decades ago, the overwater bungalow is now one of the hottest trends in the resort world. Honeymoon couples have been staying in these iconic rooms since the beginning, but now they are popular with families and adventure travelers as well.

For many people, the South Pacific island of Bora Bora is the most famous destination for the best overwater bungalows, but it's actually the Maldives, which is just southwest of India, where most of these huts-on-stilts exist. The Maldives has more than 90 resorts that feature water villas (as they are typically known there), with several new private-island resorts opening every year.

In the South Pacific you will find almost a dozen resorts on Bora Bora, another five on Moorea, and two on Tahiti that have over water villas. There are about 10 additional overwater resorts on other South Pacific islands stretching all the way to Fiji and New Caladonia.

There are also about a dozen overwater bungalow resorts in the Caribbean, mostly off the coast of Central America, with nearly all of them being diving-oriented “eco resorts.” But a few luxury overwater bungalows exist and more are being built on St. Lucia and other islands in the popular areas of the Caribbean, and this website will be the best place to look for information on all of them.