Water villa of the week: Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa
As the high season for Maldives water villas is just around the corner now (December through May) we'll feature one of the best-value resorts in the region. The Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa is a wonderful 4-star-plus hotel that offers great online rates compared to similar resorts nearby.
It has another advantage in that it's reasonably close to the Malé International Airport, but it's not close enough for it to be a factor once you are on the private island. This means it's fast and relatively cheap to reach the Sheraton Full Moon, and you can arrive at any hour of the day or night, which isn't true of most resorts.
This week: Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa
Certainly one of the larger private-island resorts in the Maldives, The Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort & Spa has 56 water villas in addition to 120 beach and island rooms and suites. Those looking for a romantic getaway could be happier at a smaller and more intimate resort, but there are actually many benefits to these larger properties.
Among the advantages here is that you have four completely different restaurants from which to choose, plus two different bars. Even many of the mid-sized resorts in the Maldives only have one main restaurant and bar, and those can get just a bit old after a few days of the same menu.
You also get a very long list of water activities that are included in the room price, plus a tennis court and a fully-equipped fitness center, which are also nearly impossible to find at smaller resorts.
Water bungalows loaded with amenities
There are 4 large water villa suites at the Sheraton Maldives Full Moon Resort, but for now we'll focus on the 52 water villas that are among the most affordable in the Maldives. They are not among the largest in the country, of course, but still quite spacious at 54 square meters.
Each room has a 40″ LCD satellite TV, wi-fi internet, a wine fridge, a spacious bathtub, and plush bathrobes. This is truly a deluxe 4-star hotel room of international standards with all the details considered. Most other resorts in this price range offer more basic rooms assuming you'll want to spend most of your time in the water or on the beach.
Price: Low-season online specials start at US$432 per night, but are usually higher, especially in high season.
Convenience perfect for a shorter trip
As mentioned above, one great feature of the Sheraton Maldives is that it's very convenient from the airport. At most resorts you land and then have to wait – sometimes for hours – to board an expensive sea-plane ride to your island, but here it's a 20-minute speedboat ride that only costs US$86 per person return (compared to US$400 and up for most sea planes).
Many people are often looking for an ideal resort for a stay of perhaps 3 nights before or after a trip to India or Sri Lanka, and when you factor in the inconvenience and cost of a sea plane trip it's less appealing. Here you can arrive at any hour of the day or night and be in your room less than an hour later. For some the sea plane journey is a magical part of the overall experience, but others prefer just to get to their room as quickly as possible, so the Sheraton is a perfect choice for that group.