MALDIVES – Hilton has opened doors of SAii Lagoon Maldives, Curio Collection by Hilton, launching its independent boutique brand as part of the Maldives’ first integrated resort.
The 198-room resort, located 15 minutes by boat from Malé International Airport, takes a seat in the Emboodhoo Lagoon. The resort opening is the first phase of the US$680-million Crossroads Maldives, which comprises nine fully-integrated island destinations.
Part of the resort’s allure are its unique touches, which give it the feel of an independent boutique property. At a DIY scent bar, guests are invited to mix a personalised scent for their own bathroom amenities with the help of staff.
The resort has also made sustainability a bigger focus, cutting out plastic from coffee capsules by brewing its own coffee and shuns processed sugar by looking to natural means of sweetening foods and beverages.
“The architecture is quirky, and the interiors are daring. And yet, the resort also has a wonderfully inspiring ambience,” said Martin van der Reijden, general manager of SAii Lagoon Maldives and vice president of operations of Crossroads Maldives.
Guests have a choice of rooms and villas, including overwater pool villas, which all sport bright and eclectic designs that draw inspiration from the archipelago’s maritime heritage.
On-property, guests have four food and beverage options ranging from a poolside Mediterranean grill and bar, Thai fusion eatery, coffee house and beach club Café del Mar, as well as an ocean-view infinity pool, fitness centre, spa and a children’s beach club and camp.
Within close reach of the resort, guests have various water sports and recreational facilities located at The Marina @ Crossroads, a 30-berth marina and lifestyle district. There is also a PADI-certified Watersports & Dive Center that runs regular excursions and private tours.
Guests can also learn about the resort’s extensive conservation activities at the Marine Discovery Centre, including activities such as a Junior Coral Curator programme and clownfish release initiatives.
The property is part of Hilton’s line of Curio Collection by Hilton properties.
Mark Nogal, global brand head of Curio Collection by Hilton, described the brand of hotels as “[sitting] on the top end of the upper upscale segment, between Hilton and Conrad”.
The brand was birthed five years ago to provide travellers with unique properties that retain their “independent boutique feel”, whether as city centre urban hotels or resorts.
It currently has 75 hotels in operation, five of which are located in Asia Pacific. By end of the year, it will be approaching its 95th opening in 26 countries. The brand will focus on primary locations in key cities and resort destinations.
Hotels within the collection run a large gamut of sizes, spanning from the boutique 32-key Madison Beach Hotel on the coast of Connecticut to a major conference hotel in Fort Lauderdale in Florida, The Diplomat Beach Resort Hollywood, which has 1,000 rooms and 2,900sqm of meetings space.