TTM Periodical | Issue 006 |March 2020

Page 1

March 2020

www.traveltrademaldives.com ttm@traveltrademaldives.com

ISSUE 006 International Travel Trade Periodical of Maldives

ZAFER AGACAN

GENERAL MANAGER, RADISSON BLU MALDIVES

PATRICK HOFFMANN

RESIDENT MANAGER, HERITANCE AARAH

JOHN D. BENDTSEN

GENERAL MANAGER, ACCOR HOTELS

IN THIS ISSUE : Roadshows & Fairs | Statistics | Government | Market Overview | People | Aviation | Travel Tech | Awards/Listings/Features | Accommodation | Trainings | Travel Agents | Celebrity News | TTM Highlights


02 FOREWORD & TEAM

PUBLISHER’S NOTE

OUR TEAM MANAGING DIRECTOR

Akhmeem Abdul Razzaq

Welcome to the March 2020 issue of

that the airport will be ready to cater to

we at Orca Media Group will try everything

“TTM Periodical”. TTM Periodical is a

over 7 million passengers annually by 2023.

to ensure TTM 2020 will be better and

travel trade publication published by

Since being launched in 2017, TTM 2020 is

more rewarding for the participants in

Travel Trade Maldives (TTM) - Maldives

the 4th edition of the show that effectively

every aspect. All this would not have been

leading international travel trade show.

connects the travel trade community of the

possible without the incredible support of

Estimated figures for 2023 indicate that

Maldives to the global network of travel

our partners and industry stakeholders.

Maldives will achieve well over 60,000 in

professionals. This year, the multi-event

Here’s wishing all the best and a successful

beds in operation and government target

travel trade show will include the TTM

event for all participants of TTM 2020.

of 2.5 million tourist arrivals annually. The

Travel Summit, and TTM prescheduled

ongoing airport development projects at

meetings,

Velana International Airport will ensure

successful as previous editions of TTM were,

TTM

Awards

&

Gala.

As

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Dr. Hussain Sunny Umar

CREATIVE DIRECTOR Nashaath

DIRECTOR

Ibrahim Areef

DIRECTOR

Mohamed Khoorsheed

MANAGER

Ahmed Nasir Aminath Yusra Ibrahim

PHOTOGRAPHY DYNAMYST Moonis M. Fauzan Mazin

DESIGN DIRECTION CREATIVE TUNA Zuhura Ismail Zaya Ahmed Moothi Hamdhoon W. Asthu Shahindha

MARKETING

Ali Sageef Ibrahim Aminath Suha Mohamed Suma Abdul Rahman Fathimath Shazra Copyright c 2020 Orca Media Group. All rights reserved throughout the world. Reproduction in any manner is prohibited. Opinions expressed in the articles are of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the editor or publishers. While the editors do their utmost to verify information published they do not accept responsibility for its absolute accuracy. Materials in this publication may not be reproduced, whether in part or in whole, without the consent of Orca Media Group.

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ROADSHOWS & FAIRS 03

MMPRC ROADSHOW & FAIR LIST 2020 JAN 08 JAN 10 JAN

15 APR

19 APR 22 APR

FITUR INTERNATIONAL TOURISM TRADE FAIR

VISIT MALDIVES EVENING, INDIA

AUG

ARABIAN TRAVEL MARKET (ATM)

AUG

17, 18, 19 & 21 AUG

13 MAY 15 MAY

BUSINESS, MICE AND LEISURE MARKET (BLTM)

ITB CHINA SEP

13 MAY

VISIT MALDIVES EVENING, SHANGHAI

17 & 19 MAY

26, 27 & 29 MAY

Milan, Italy

04 MAR 08 MAR

USA, ROADSHOW

JUNE 5, 8, 9, 11 & 12 JUN

SPAIN, ROADSHOW

22, 24, 26, 29 & 30 JUN

Berlin, Germany

23 SEP 26 SEP

9,11,13 & 16 MAR

RUSSIA AND CIS ROADSHOW Ukraine, Belarus, St. Petersburg, Moscow (Maldivian Evening)

03 JUL 05 JUL

15 JUL

WTM AFRICA Cape Town, South Africa

MALDIVIAN EVENING, BANGKOK

7, 9 & 11 JUL

ASEAN, ROADSHOW Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam

NOV

UK, ROADSHOW

CHINA, ROADSHOW

DEC DEC

OCT 4, 6 & 8 OCT

EASTERN EUROPE, ROADSHOW Czech Rep, Slovakia, Poland

OCT

IFTM TOP RESA Paris, France

14 OCT 16 OCT

TTG TRAVEL EXPERIENCE Rimini, Italy

Bangkok, Thailand

APR 06 APR 08 APR

NOV

Mumbai, India

Delhi, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Trivendrum, Hyderabad

VISIT MALDIVES TRAVEL EXPO (VMTE)

VISIT MALDIVES EVENING, UK London, UK

VIVAH WEDDING & LIFESTYLE EXPO

RIYADH TRAVEL FAIR Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

NOV

Hangzhou, Chengdu, Kunming 25 SEP 27 SEP

Bangkok, Thailand 26 MAR 28 MAR

London, UK

MONACO YACHT SHOW Monaco

INDIA, ROADSHOW

JUL

WORLD TRAVEL MARKET (WTM)

Edinburgh, Liverpool, Bristol

Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia , Bilbao, Malaga

ITB BERLIN

MALDIVIAN EVENING, GERMANY

NOV

DIVING RESORT TRAVEL DRT Manila, Philippines

VISIT MALDIVES EVENING, JAPAN Osaka, Japan

MIDDLE EAST & GCC, ROADSHOW

Berlin, Germany

04 MAR

OCT

New York, Miami, Chicago

BIT

MAR

11 SEP 13 SEP

TOURISM EXPO JAPAN (JATA) Osaka, Japan

MATTA

Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Jeddah, Riyadh

CHINA, ROADSHOW Shenzhen & Xian

BRIDE SHOW Dubai

OCT

NOV 6, 7, 9 & 10 SEP

ITB ASIA Singapore

SEP

Shanghai, China

FEB

21 OCT 23 OCT

KL, Malaysia

Delhi, India

09 FEB 11 FEB

LUXPERIENCE Sydney, Australia

GERMANY, ROADSHOW Hamburg, Berlin, Essen & Stuttgart

MAY Shanghai

05 FEB 08 FEB

12 OCT 15 OCT

NATAS Singapore

FESPO Zürich, Switzerland

31 JAN 01 FEB

KOREA WEDDING SHOW Seoul, Korea

Dubai, UAE

Madrid, Spain

30 JAN 02 FEB

JUL

Mumbai, India

Mumbai, India

MATKA Helsinki, Finland

22 JAN 26 JAN

ITB INDIA

SATTE Delhi, India

16 JAN 19 JAN

15 APR 17 APR

19, 21 & 23 OC

ITALY, ROADSHOW Milan, Florence, Rome

INTERNATIONAL LUXURY TRAVEL MARKET (ILTM) Cannes, France


04 ROADSHOWS & FAIRS

MALDIVES SHOWCASES AT SATTE DELHI AS AN UNDERWATER RESTAURANT Maldives Marketing and Public Relations

top travel trade industry professionals from

Corporation (MMPRC) just kicked off the

India to further develop and strengthen

first travel trade show of the year at SATTE

the presence of the Maldives in the Indian

Delhi where the Maldives booth is designed

market.

as an underwater restaurant. This three-day fair attracts a large number MMPRC together with partners from the

of visitors from India, based on figures from

tourism industry, participates in the South

2019 the fair had over 1,000 participants,

Maldives. Activities available at the stand

Based on the arrival figures of 2019, India

Asian Travel and Tourism Exchange (SATTE)

representation from 50 different countries,

include a photo booth, where the visitors

is ranked in the 2nd position of the highest

held in Delhi, India from 8th January till

28 Indian states and 50 cities from across

are able to take pictures alongside stunning

performing markets to the Maldives with

10th January 2020.

India.

images from the Maldives and post of social

a 99.3% increase in arrivals compared to

media to win goodie bags. Through this

previous years. MMPRC plans to continue

SATTE is one of the leading B2B travel

The Maldives stand is showcased at a 60

social media campaign, a raffle would also

this momentum of growth by conducting

exchange shows held in India. A total of

square meter stand designed to represent

be carried out for the opportunity to win

several marketing activities in India.

28 participants from 15 companies are

the unique underwater restaurants available

a 2-night stay in the Maldives. Visitors will

participating along with MMPRC. During the

in Maldives, with TV screens which feature

be able to taste authentic Maldivian snacks

3 days of SATTE, they will be meeting with

videos showing the different sides of

such as ‘Theluli bambukeyo’ and ‘Bondi’.

MALDIVES KICK STARTS OUTDOOR CAMPAIGN IN THREE LARGEST CITIES OF CHINA

An outdoor campaign kick started in

and five LED screens in Guangzhou’s five

roadshows, digital media campaigns along

Last year a total of 284,372 tourist arrived

the three largest cities of China, the top

biggest shopping malls will display Maldives

with press and celebrity familiarization trips

to Maldives from China. Chinese market

tourist arrival market to the Maldives.

through videos advertisements. Moreover,

for the Chinese market this year.

remains the number one market in terms of

This campaign is carried out in Beijing,

the unique experiences for tourists in

Guangzhou and Shanghai respectively.

Maldives will be featured on seven LED

Last year various activities including fairs,

Through this campaign Maldives will be

screens in Shanghai’s busiest metro station

roadshow in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou

The milestone arrival of 1.5 million tourists

promoted as the most desired tourist

used by over 150,000 passengers daily.

&

trips

was achieved by Maldives 38 days ahead of

along with digital media campaigns were

time in 2019 with total arrivals reaching 1.7

In addition, Maldives Marketing & PR

carried out in China’s biggest social media

million by the end of year.

During this major campaign, 2000 LED

Corporation (MMPRC) will participate in

platforms, WeChat and Weibo to promote

screens in Beijing’s biggest office buildings

two travel trade fairs and conduct two

the destination.

destination for the Chinese market.

arrivals to Maldives.

Chengdu

and

familiarization


ROADSHOWS & FAIRS 05

OUTDOOR CAMPAIGNS LAUNCHED IN ITALY TO PROMOTE MALDIVES

Maldives Marketing & PR Corporation

advertisements,

renowned

for tourists in Maldives. This tram will be

including Online campaigns and outdoor

(MMPRC) launches an outdoor brand

travel agency Alpitour, which cater the

wrapped for a duration of three months and

campaigns.

visibility campaign in Italy to promote

highest number of tourists to Maldives and

its route consist of major tourist attractions

the destination. Through this campaign

2000 agency offices run under Alpitour

in Milan.

Maldives

the

will display the beauty of Maldives on

most desirable tourist destination for the

window displays. These offices are operated

MMPRC will continue marketing campaigns

total of 136,343 tourists from Italy visited

Italian market.

throughout Italy.

focusing Italy in 2020. In this regard,

Maldives. Italy is ranked as the third largest

MMPRC will participate in two major

market to Maldives in terms of arrivals. This is an increase of 29.5 percent to 2018.

will

be

promoted

as

and

Italy’s

Italy has been a traditional and important market to Maldives. By the end of 2019, a

During this major campaign 350 screens

Moreover, a tram travelling on the second

tourism fairs and organize press, influencer

in 14 different airports in Italy will display

largest city of Italy, Milan will be wrapped

and celebrity familiarization trips along

the beauty of Maldives through video

with the photos of most unique experiences

with joint campaigns with travel agencies


06 ROADSHOWS & FAIRS

MALDIVES PARTICIPATES IN THE BIGGEST TRAVEL AND TRADE FAIR IN NORTHERN EUROPE - MATKA 2020 professionals and will get exposure to over

various activities are held at the stand for

902 accredited media representatives from

visitors to experience a bit of Sunny side

Northern Europe to further develop and

of Life. Visitors are able to take pictures

strengthen the presence of the Maldives in

alongside images of the destination and

this region.

post it on social media to win a free holiday to the Maldives. Traditional snacks will be

With over 90 countries representing in

displayed for visitors to taste the authentic

MATKA, this fair is a platform to reach

local flavors of the Maldives.

professionals with highest decision-making capability, allowing to take advantage of

MATKA is a great platform to promote

media coverage to promote the destination.

Maldives to a prime audience. MMPRC hope

The four-day fair attracts a large number

to increase the number of tourist arrivals

of visitors from around the world. Based

from Northern Europe through MATKA and

on previous statics, over 64,589 visitors

other various marketing activities focused

and 935 exhibitors took part in the fair.

to this region. A total of 1.7 million tourists

Maldives Marketing & Public Relations

MATKA is the biggest tourism event in

Corporation

with

the Northern Europe and Baltic region.

Maldives is represented by a 60 square

the Maldives welcomed 57,370 visitors

industry,

A total of eleven participants from seven

meter stand, that is designed to highlight

from Northern Europe.

partakes in MATKA 2020 held in Helsinki,

companies are participating along with the

the natural beauty of the country. It is also

Finland from 16 January till 19 January

MMPRC officials. During the fair, they will be

complimented by videos featuring different

2020.

meeting with the top travel & trade industry

experiences of the destination. This year,

partners

(MMPRC),

from the

together

tourism

visited Maldives last year. In 2019 (till Nov)

MALDIVES SHOWCASED AT THE BIGGEST INTERNATIONAL TOURISM FAIR IN SPAIN - FITUR 2020 Maldives Marketing & Public Relations

sessions about the Maldives to win free

Corporation

with

gifts. In addition to this, the visitors will be

industry partners exhibits at the biggest

able to taste the local snacks like the famous

International Tourism Fair FITUR held

“Addu Bondi”, “Thelluli banbukeyo” as well

in Madrid, Spain from 22nd to 26th of

as “Kulhi Roshi”. To further strengthen the

January 2020.

destination presence at the fair, videos of

(MMPRC)

together

different segments will be showcased on MMPRC will be exhibiting in a 71.5sqm stand

the led screen at the stand.

showcasing the beauty of the destination. 24 companies with 41 representatives

This year, the destination will be showcased

will be representing their products at the

through an eye-catching outdoor video

Maldives stand. During the 5-day fair

ad with the Maldives stand number, at

they will be meeting with top travel trade

the Southern entrance of the fair. This is

tourism professionals to further strengthen

a prominent location and is expected to

the market performance to the Maldives.

increase the visitors to the stand.

companies from 165 countries and regions,

the end of 2019 a total of 36,064 arrivals

142,642 trade visitors and 110,848 visitors

were recorded from the market which is an

from the general public.

increase of 13.5 percent compared to the

Maldives stand will be located at Hall 6

FITUR is the global meeting point for tourism

designated for Asia and the Pacific countries.

professionals and the leading trade fair for

At the Maldives stand 6D08 different

inbound and outbound markets in Latin

Spanish market has been a promising market

taken by MMPRC to further increase the

activities will be carried out to interact with

America. Looking at the visitor statistics to

for the Maldives over the years. Observing

destination presence in Spain for the year

the visitors, such as participating at quiz

FITUR past years it has recorded 10,487

the Spanish arrivals to the Maldives, by

2020.

previous years. Several initiatives will be


GOVERNMENT 07

GERMANY-SCHENGEN VISA TEMPORARY BIO-METRIC CLINIC TO OPEN IN MALE’ IN FEBRUARY The

Ministry

of

Foreign

Affairs

has

for visas to travel to Germany, including

announced that the institution will host

those

a

visa

Tourismus-BĂśrse Berlin (ITB) Fair in March.

Biometric Clinic in Male’, organized by

Following the announcement by the Minister

the Embassy of the Federal Republic of

of Foreign Affairs, Abdulla Shahid and

Germany to the Maldives.

Ambassador of Germany, JĂśrn Rohde on

temporary

Germany-Schengen

participating

in

Internationale

16 December 2019, the Ministry of Foreign The Biometric Clinic is sponsored by

Affairs is also currently working with VFS

Maldives Marketing and Public Relations

Global to establish a permanent Schengen

Corporation (MMPRC) and will operate from

Visa Application Centre in Maldives, which

0900 hrs to 1800 hrs from 3 – 5 February

will begin operations in March 2020.

2019 at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Applicants can book appointments online,

For further information regarding the

until 1730 hrs of 25 January 2020.

Biometric Clinic, please visit the VFS website.

The temporary Clinic aims to ease the difficulties Maldivians face while applying

HUNGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SZIJJĂ RTĂ“ VOICES SUPPORT FOR MALDIVES TO BE GRANTED VISA-FREE STATUS BY EU Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs

management, food safety and tourism in

and Trade PĂŠter SzijjĂĄrtĂł has declared his

the country.

support for the initiative according to which the Republic of Maldives should be afforded

Minister SzijjĂĄrtĂł also briefed his negotiating

visa-free travel into the European Union.

partners on the Hungarian government’s energy and climate protection strategy,

During a meeting with his Maldivian

in view of the fact that the Maldives are

counterpart Abdulla Shahid in New Delhi

particularly endangered by the rise in sea

on 15th January, PĂŠter SzijjĂĄrtĂł expressed

level being cause by climate change, and

Hungary’s

EU’s

in closing offered 15 scholarship places

decision to lift the economic sanctions it

for students from the Maldives to attend

had imposed on the island nation.

Hungarian universities.

According to MTI, Hungary’s Eximbank

Hungary and the Maldives mark the 45th

has opened a 30 million euro credit line to

anniversary of the establishment of their

promote Hungarian investments in water

diplomatic relations this year.

satisfaction

with

the

video news network of maldives


08 GOVERNMENT

MALDIVES TO ESTABLISH ‘BEACH SCOUTS’ IN 19 ISLANDS FOR TOURIST SAFETY Government of Maldives has opened

nominations for tourist scouts to be

Male’ and its suburban towns Villimale and Hulhumale’

stationed in 19 islands across the nation,

Addu

in an attempt to strengthen the safety

Thinadhoo (Vaavu Atoll)

of

Gan (Laamu Atoll)

Addu

Dhiffushi, Gulhi, Guraidhoo,

holidaymakers

visiting

the

tourist

destination. The Water Safety Programme conducted

Himmafushi, Maafushi, and

by the Ministry of Tourism in association

Thulusdhoo (Kaafu Atoll)

with the Maldives Police Service and armed

forces intends to ensure that the Maldives

Dhigurah and Hangnaameedhoo (Alif Dhaal Atoll)

remains a safe place for tourists. The

Dharavandhoo (Baa Atoll)

programme was introduced to address

Rasdhoo, Ukulhas, and Thoddoo (Alif

the security and safety measures among

Alif Atoll)

tourists in Maldives during beach and water activities as the destination has seen an

The ‘Beach Scouts’ will be tasked with

increase in the number of drownings over

providing safety briefing, details of the

the past year.

island and weather to tourists as well as ensuring their safety in the water.

Nineteen islands have been identified for the

serve as a first responder in any rescue or

luxury

help needed.

industry has witnessed an expansion with

first phase of the nationwide programme.

Tourism Ministry has stated that applicants

Each housing more than 100 tourist beds,

should be familiar with locations safe for

Maldives is a top leading tourist destination

the islands include:

swimming, able to provide first aid and

for tourists worldwide with award-winning

resorts

and

guesthouses.

The

over 20 new properties opened during the previous year.


GOVERNMENT 09

MMPRC REINVENTS ITSELF AS ONE OF THE BEST PERFORMING GOVERNMENT ENTITIES OF 2019 MMPRC, the government body mandated

were conducted by MMPRC to facilitate in

with the promotion of Maldives as a tourist

achieving this target.

destination, has reinvented itself as one of the best-performing government entities of

Thoyyib also highlighted in November that

2019 despite the huge corruption scandal

it is the first time the Maldives is marketed

that rocked the country. According to

not only on traditional media platforms

current statistics, it is widely expected that

but on modern and creative media as

the year 2020 will be the best year for

well. He said, “Global tourism is changing.

tourism in Maldives tourism history.

The millennial traveler wants more than a relaxing holiday. Today the keyword is

Under the leadership of new Managing

experiential tourism and we are working

Director Thoyyib Mohamed, MMPRC has

hard to maintain position as the most

for travelers in all major markets this

industry stakeholder opinions are taken

achieved milestone arrival of 1.5 million

sought after destinations in the world.”

year.

into consideration more weighty via direct

They

include

fairs,

roadshows,

familiarization trips, outdoor campaigns

tourists 38 days ahead of time and total tourist arrivals reaching 1.67 million by

MMPRC continues to work closely with

and joint campaigns targeted to 23 different

the end of the year. In 2019, more than

industry stakeholders and has planned

markets.

130 events including fairs, roadshows,

various activities to promote the Maldives

According

media FAM trips, and joint campaigns

further as the most preferred destination

MMPRC is very clear about their plans &

to

industry

visits, forums, seminars & emails.

stakeholders,

TOURISM MINISTRY TO HOST ‘VISIT MALDIVES DESTINATION SHOWS’ Tourism Ministry will be hosting Visit

Applications are now open for all interested

Maldives Destination Shows in 2020.

local artists to perform at the Visit Maldives

The ministry informs that these shows

Destination Shows. They are required to

will be aimed at showcasing the unique

send their applications before 19th January

destinations of the Maldives and to provide

2019, 2pm. Islands that are interested to

a platform for talented local artists. The

host the shows are also required to send

shows will be held in the Maldives and

their applications before 19th January

abroad, the Ministry informs.

2019, 2pm.

TOURISM MINISTRY CALLS ON PUBLIC TO SUBMIT OPINIONS FOR AMENDMENTS TO MINISTRY’S POLICIES Ministry of Tourism has announced for

2. Policy Number R-43/2015: Safety

the public to submit their opinions for

procedures in resorts against fire

amendments to the Ministry’s policies.

incidents policy

The deadline for submission is 23rd January 2020, 1400hrs.

3. Policy Number R-11/2011: Wedding vows renewal ceremonies for tourists policy

The Ministry announced for public’s view for the following policies:

The Ministry informs that they will be

1. Policy Number R-19/2011:

calling for public’s opinion on various other

Accumulation of information for Maldives tourism statistics policy

policies as well.


10 GOVERNMENT

MALDIVES WELCOMES FIRST VISITOR OF 2020

Hon. Ali Waheed and the Managing Director

“The Middle East and GCC region are

of MMPRC Thoyyib Mohamed. He was

important markets for us with its high yield,

presented with a congratulatory certificate

easy accessibility, and potential for growth.

and special gifts by MMPRC.

A lot of activities were carried out for the market last year and we plan to do more

He received a complimentary holiday

this year. We are having a campaign with

package sponsored by Furaveri Island

Vogue Arabia this January to kick off the

Resort & Spa, presented by the minister.

2020 campaign for this market” he added.

Moreover, he also received return flight

The milestone arrival of 1.5 million tourists

tickets to the Maldives from Gulf Air,

was achieved by Maldives 38 days ahead

along with a gift package from Ooredoo

of time in 2019 with total arrivals reaching

Maldives.

1.67 million by the end of the year. In 2019, more than 130 events including fairs,

Speaking at the event, the Managing

roadshows, media FAM trips, and joint

Director of MMPRC, Thoyyib Mohamed

campaigns were conducted by MMPRC

reflected back on the marketing activities of

to facilitate in achieving this target.

the previous year and the efforts to increase arrivals this year. “We are satisfied with the

MMPRC has planned various activities to

marketing activities we did last year. I expect

promote the Maldives further as the most

to see the outcome of those activities in the

preferred destination for travelers in all

coming days. We are targeting to achieve

major markets this year. They include fairs,

With the beginning of a new decade, the

the Maldives Airports Company Limited

more in 2020. Maldives Year in Russia

roadshows, familiarization trips, outdoor

Maldives has warmly welcomed the first

(MACL), Maldives Immigration, Furaveri

would be one of the many new initiatives

campaigns and joint campaigns targeted to

visitor of 2020 this morning at Velana

Island Resort & Spa, Gulf Air, and Ooredoo

which will be launched this year as part

23 different markets.

International Airport. The lucky winner Mr.

Maldives.

of the diversified marketing activities for 2020” said Thoyyib.

Mohamed Alamer from Bahrain, arrived at the Maldives for vacation with his

The stamping of the first visitor’s passport

wife Ms. Sara Aljasim via Gulf Air

by the Maldives Immigration commenced

As the first tourist of the year is from

GF144. He was received by officials from

the event where Alamer was escorted to the

Bahrain, Thoyyib highlighted stressed the

Maldives Marketing and Public Relations

VIP Lounge by MMPRC staff. Alamer was

importance of this market for Maldives

Corporation

then welcomed by the Minister of Tourism

tourism.

(MMPRC),

together

with


GOVERNMENT

MALDIVES BREAKS RECORD WITH 1.7 MILLION TOURIST ARRIVALS IN 2019

11

Tourism Ministry has announced that the

This was followed by American countries

total tourist arrivals in 2019 have reached

(5%) with 84,793 tourists, Middle East

1.7 million.

(3.5%) with 60,003 tourists and Africa with 18, 698 tourists.

According to the statistics by the Ministry, 171, 292 tourists visited the Maldives in

The top 10 country-wise markets were

the month of December making the total

China (16.7%), India (9.7%), Italy (9.7%),

tourist arrivals in 2019 to 1,702,831. This

Germany (8%), UK (7.7%).

is a 14.7% increase compared to 2018. This is a record amount of tourist arrivals in the

The most significant increase in 2019

history of Maldives tourism.

tourist arrivals was from India with 166,015 tourists and an 83.5% increase compared

The strongest performance region-wise in

to the previous year.

2019 was from Europe (49%) with a 14.8% increase and 833,904 tourists.

Maldives achieved its target of 1.5 million tourist arrivals on November 24, 2019.

The second strongest performance was

While 1.6 million tourists had visited the

from Asia & the Pacific (41.4%). There were

country by December 15, the number

705,117 tourists from this region in the

increased to 1.7 million by the end of the

year. This is a 13.5% increase compared to

year.

2018.

TRAVEL AGENCIES REQUESTED TO SUBMIT ANNUAL REPORT TO PREVENT TERMINATION The Ministry of Tourism has requested all

their agency permit revoked. According

travel agencies to submit their annual report

to the principles of the permission to run

for the year 2019 before 14:00hrs, 31st

the agency under sector 8; Every year,

January 2020. The announcement states

companies are supposed to hand in a report

that the agencies that are unable to submit

to the tourism Ministry.

their report by the deadline would have

MINISTRY OF TOURISM TAKES PREVENTIVE MEASURES ON EMERGENCE OF CORONAVIRUS IN CHINA The Ministry of Tourism of Maldives in

precautionary and no cases have been

collaboration with the stakeholder agencies

identified in Maldives.

and partners has announced that all measures have been taken to prevent and

The highest priority of the Government of

protect the health and well-being of the

Maldives is given to ensure that all visitors

Maldivian public and the tourists following

are safe and protected and all possible

the emergence of Novel Coronavirus in

measures necessary are implemented.

China. The Health Protection Agency of Maldives has begun entry screening at Velana International Airport. The Ministry further informs that these measures are


12

MARKET OVERVIEW

MALDIVES TOURISM INDUSTRY Introduction

this region in the year. This is a 13.5%

connections between Male and important

2023. As per the past growth trends of the

This market report looks into a brief

increase compared to 2018. This was

Indian cities such as New Delhi, Bangalore

markets, Maldives is expected to welcome

overview into the Maldives tourism industry

followed by American countries (5%) with

and Mumbai.

1.8 million tourists in 2020, reaching 2.5

for the year 2019, including the key

84,793 tourists, Middle East (3.5%) with

markets and the highlights along with the

60,003 tourists and Africa with 18, 698

The Germany and USA market also

future forecast of the demand and supply

tourists.

continued to show increase as the previous

According to the forecast, if the slow

years while other markets Italy, UK, Russia,

growth of Chinese market continues, while

of the industry for the next 4 years. Tourism

million tourists by 2023.

industry is the largest economic industry in

Looking at the top 10 country-wise markets,

France, Japan and Australia showed a

the Indian market continues to grow, Indian

the Maldives. It plays a significant role in

though China market has continued to be

steady increase.

will surpass the Chinese market to become

contributing towards the economic growth,

in the top, after no increase in the growth

earning foreign exchanges and creates

for the past 3 years, the market had a 0.3%

Looking into the supply, with over 20 new

employment opportunities in the tertiary

increase in 2019. Indian market, which was

resorts opened in 2019, there were 927

sector.

at 5th place in 2018 with 66,955 tourists,

tourist centres registered by the end of

As per the market growth by region, Europe

jumped to the 2nd position with a whopping

2019.

Traditionally, the tourist centres

market will remain the top market but

Current Status

166,030 tourist arrivals in 2019 and India

mainly

compromised

resorts,

the Asia and the Pacific market will keep

According to the statistics by the Ministry

showed the highest growth rate with 83.5%

however with the emergence of local

increasing as well. The American market

of Tourism, 2019 proved to be one of the

in 2019.

island tourism in 2017, guesthouses have

and African is expected to increase almost

opened new options for even the budget

a double by the end of 2023. As per the

most successful years with reaching target

the largest market for Maldives tourism

of

the

industry.

of 1.5 millionth tourist arrival on November

India is now one of the fastest growing

travelers. Every year Maldives has witness

supply, the government has announced

24th, Maldives welcomed a record amount

outbound tourism markets in the world,

over 1000 new operating bed capacity from

that tourism sector will increase 1,300

of 1,702,831 tourists. This was a 14.7%

second only to China. The United Nations

guesthouses itself.

beds in 2020 with 13 new resorts and 74

increase compared to 2018.

World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)

guesthouses.

estimates that India will account for

By the end of 2019, the tourist centres

After slowing in 2018, tourist arrivals

50 million outbound tourists by 2020.

include 152 resorts, 12 hotels, 607

Maldives will need the operating bed capacity

rebounded during the first half of 2019 and

Maldives

closer

guesthouses and 156 safaris. All this

to be at 53,078 by 2020 to generate 70%

continued to do so throughout the year.

to the Indian market contributes to this

combined gave an accumulated operating

bed night occupancy of 13 million. This will

Europe has been the strongest region for

growth. In addition to this, the emergence

bed capacity of 49, 924. This was a 13.9%

require 2.2 million tourists on an average

the Maldives for the past few years and

of more airlines and routes has increased

growth in the operating bed capacity for

of 6 nights. However as per the forecast,

even in 2019. In 2019 tourist arrivals from

the availability of options for the Indian

2019 compared to 2018.

by end of 2020 Maldives is expected for 11

Europe (49%) was with a 14.8% increase

travelers.

being

geographically

and 833,904 tourists. The second strongest

million actual bed nights with occupancy

Future Forecast

at 61%. By the end of 2023, with 63,937

performance was from Asia and the Pacific

Indian budget carriers such as GoAir,

The government has aimed to set new

operating bed capacity, for 70% bed night

(41.4%). There were 705,117 tourists from

Spice Jet and Indigo have launched direct

target of 2.5 million annual arrivals by

occupancy, Maldives requires 16 million


MARKET OVERVIEW

bed nights. This will require 2.7 million

the average ADR considerably since these

with tourism marketing policies by focusing

tourists on an average stay of 6 nights. But,

markets will account to over 30% of the

on key European markets. Either by giving

according to the forecast, by end of 2023

total tourist arrivals to the Maldives by

incentives to fly to Maldives or bilateral

Maldives is expected receive 15 million bed

2023.

government talks can help to boost the

nights with an average occupancy at 67%.

routes from Europe to Maldives. It’s

Conclusions – Recommendations

important to identify top 15 markets for

But the worrying factor is the with the ever-

It’s important to have more European

long-term and focus on air connectivity to

growing Asian market, the average stays

connectivity focused on our traditional

these to ensure that expected arrival figures

could be lower and thus resulting in much

European markets if we want to maintain

are met.

lower bed nights even with an increase in

a better average stay and ADR. Thus,

total tourist arrivals. Since ADR is lower

with fewer arrivals’ figures can provide

Key Findings

for Indian and Chinese markets, another

better overall tourism receipts. Aviation

concerning factor is that this could reduce

industry policies of Maldives must align

Indian market to overtake Chinese market by 2021

Indian and Chinese market to have 30% market share by 2023

Europe to remain the largest market by region

Average Daily Rate and Average Stay to fall with increase in Asian markets

Operating bed capacity to increase by average 8%

Total tourist arrivals to reach 2.5 million by 2023

13


14

MARKET OVERVIEW Current Maldives Tourism Context

from guest houses by positioning as a

Tourism in the Maldives is operating in a

secluded one-island-one-resort concept

disparate context compared to its earlier

incorporating further value propositions,

days. Over the past years, Maldives has

this unique proposition is becoming more

seen two notable changes that led to how

challenging to capitalize. Guesthouses offer

tourism is regulated in the country. Like any

almost similar offering and many of these

other economic system, our regulatory and

guest houses even offer private beaches and

political factors play a pivotal role in the

almost the same level of service offerings

whole industry and how the competitive

with much more cheaper rates.

dynamics form its shape. This includes how investment decisions are made in the

Way Forward

industry and the flow of demand and supply.

The future of the Maldives lies on its clever

These are all determining factors that relate

moves. It needs a clear and well-considered

to how the attractive Maldives would be in

strategy

today’s global competition.

dynamics. A well-executed strategy will

under

the

current

market

act as a panacea for the rising challenges.

THE FUTURE OF MALDIVES TOURISM SUCCESS LIES ON ITS STRATEGIC EXCELLENCE BY ANIL ADAM MANAGING PARTNER AT PEACOCK CONSULTING

The current Maldivian political context

For Maldives tourism, planning without

is playing a crucial role in shaping

a sound strategy is no different than

our tourism’s future. Over the years,

sailing off without a rudder. Our tourism’s

political development had resulted in the

eventualities, in such a case, will be an

introduction of various taxes. Maldives now

industry that gets buffeted in the rough seas

has a number of tourism taxes to support

of competition. Our tourism needs a calm

the growing developmental needs. Like

and Blue Ocean as we had in its heyday.

any other industry, the level of taxation is a crucial factor that determines the

On developing a sound strategy, Maldives

competitiveness

tourism.

need to focus on some of the pillars that

Maldives need to ensure that these taxes

uphold our tourism uniqueness. The rising

are implemented in unison with its value

number of beds are not proportionately

creation model.

translating to occupancy growth. At first,

of

Maldives

Maldives needs to implement a cohesive The second dimension is the social reforms

long-term plan on how it would manage the

that are sparking in the Maldives, which

supply and demand into the industry and

are catalyzed due to political reforms.

secondly, it requires a winning destination

This is driven by interest groups including

strategy to leap ahead of the competition.

resort workers, guesthouse associations, travel agents’ associations and such similar

Such a strategy should constitute a unique

groups who are becoming more vocal and

destination marketing effort linked to

active. This has led to laxing of some of

more relevant measurement indicators.

the laws including revoking of regulations

The total number of tourists arriving in the

compete in international trade.

that confined tourism to uninhabited

Maldives is less relevant when the demand

islands. The official statistics from the

is sluggish and the supply is overflowing. A

global media, the Maldives is referred to

Today, countries are striving to become

Ministry of Tourism shows that this led to

picture with such a developmental statistic

as a paradise on earth. It is one of the top

more

the proliferation of guesthouses, which

alone is so untrue. Rather, more relevant

bucket-list destinations for soon-to-be-wed

added investment and better planning.

sparked an upward trend in the number

indicators would be the average occupancy

honeymooners.

Other than the Maldives, more paradises

of beds over the last couple of years.

in the Maldives, the average length of stay,

From 2013 to 2017, the guesthouses have

the growth rates of product segments and

sustained an average bed growth of over 40

Average Room Rate (ARR) to name some.

Maldives tourism has been referred to

Nations, the world’s Human Development

as the “chicken that lays the golden egg”.

Index (HDI) has risen from 5.98 in 1990 to

It is the lifeblood of our economy. Over

0.731 in 2018 (of which index above 0.700

the years, it has gone through several

is considered high). This sparks countries to

evolutions that positioned it as one of the niche destinations in the world. In the

internationally

competitive

with

are popping up across the world. The world The success of Maldives tourism is coupled

has learned the success of island tourism

with many factors, including its one-island-

concepts and are in an endeavor to imitate

one-resort concept, attractive tax regime

it. Although travelers once did an exclusive

and lack of supply that translated to

trip to the Maldives, there is a growing trend

favorable investment returns. Even today,

that shifts Maldives as a combined holiday

the average resort investment recovery

destination. It is expected that this trend

in the Maldives is 8 years and Return on

will become more pervasive in the future

Investment (ROI) is between 12 to 15

with more competitive travel offers. Thus,

percent. However, one question that looms

Maldives cannot afford to put its mind at

on my mind is how long can this Maldives

rest in the changing market reality. Our

sustain this advantage?

share of wallet from these travelers may further be subjected to cannibalization

The world we inherited today is witnessing

without a winning strategy. Maldives needs

various changes. Countries, even the ones

to enhance its strategic excellence that can

that were plagued with developmental

create a competitive advantage in the rising

challenges, are prospering. As per the United

destination rivalry.

percent while, during the same period, the resorts segment was able to retain a growth

From the competitive strategy perspective,

of just over 6 percent. A starker reality is

Maldives need to develop its comparative

emerging in the occupancy aspects of these

advantage, which its rivals could hardly

two segments. From 2013 to 2017, resorts

imitate, at least, not in a very short run.

have an average occupancy decline of 2.95

It requires a novel marketing strategy

percent whilst guest houses were able to

to

secure a growth 14.39 percent occupancy

novel marketing strategy, when executed

during the same period.

triumphantly, would help to attain a strong

stimulate

brand

differentiation.

A

brand leadership status for Maldives in From the investment perspective, the

the global competition. Attaining such a

resorts are subjected to higher investments

position necessitates Maldives cater for

and risks whilst the guesthouses have a

diversified travelers and their evolving

minimal

needs and our destination brand “Maldives”

investment.

Although

resorts

were able to withstand the competition

to leapfrog in its marketing.


MARKET OVERVIEW 15 Developing brand leadership

potential and existing customer base, it

For such innovative initiatives to thrive,

customers’ core motivations and delivering

A destination brand like any other brand

would also help a traveler maturing from

economic incentives are vital and can be

to their deep-rooted, unspoken emotional

requires viewing from a different lens. A

one product or service to move to another

possible with a strong funding mechanism.

needs would be the next big thing Maldives

brand constitutes more than the functional

product or service, thus, helping Maldives

Maldives need a promising investment

could do to sustain a calm Blue Ocean for

attributes. A successful brand is wrapped in

to prolong the travelers’ life cycle in the

ecosystem and our capital market holds

the near future. The current “Sunny Side of

a bundle of various functional and emotional

Maldives.

great prospects for it. An internationally

Life” and its sub slogans are compelling and

integrated capital market will help our

overarching themes. However, they require

attributes, which together forms a complete brand. In addition to the functional

To establish a diversified product portfolio,

tourism investors to be less reliant on

subsequent creative stories and further

elements, including the accommodation

Maldives

condos,

foreign banks, which are not at disposal for

campaigns to richly inculcate the brand

offerings, food and beverage options,

events of all sorts, entertainment brands,

many Maldivian companies and share the

“Maldives” in our visitors’ minds and reap

transportations, entertainment offerings,

enhanced cultural and arts experiences,

wealth of our tourism more equitably.

its real competitive returns.

the emotional appeal of our destination

food and beverage innovations, creative

needs to be augmented.

travel arrangements and so on. It needs a

More holds true in the emotional aspects of

Maldives

top-ranked hotel management institute to

Maldives’ tourism brand on how it translates

potential. Realizing it requires a long-term

In developing the functional attributes,

supply talented human resources. Many

to competitive advantage. Investing in our

integrated planning approach. It requires

Maldives need to invest in enhancing its

of these concepts may take a while to gain

brand from an emotional track would help

taking a strategic perspective by creating

product portfolio. It requires novel product

momentum. It may, in fact, not succeed.

Maldives to develop a deep intrinsic bond

an advantage in its rich history, grows

concepts in its march towards a diversified

However, such product testing needs to be

with travelers, promotes organic growth,

a diversified portfolio and developing a

product portfolio. Having a diversified

initiated to stimulate innovations and turn

make Maldives as a destination more

unique emotional rhythm that will create

product portfolio would not only help

Maldives tourism even as an incubation

unique and becoming less price-sensitive

resounding value.

Maldives to cast a wider net on all our

platform as is the case of Silicon Valley.

over

needs

timeshares,

rival

destinations.

Tapping

tourism

truly

holds

greater

into

GROWING MUSLIM TRAVEL MARKET OF UK The Muslim travel market has enjoyed

in the UK, the majority of whom are second

unparalleled growth over the last decade. A

and third generation, and their appetite to

decade ago, the term “halal-friendly” travel

travel is equal to that of their non-Muslim

didn’t exist. The industry was familiar with

peers.

adventure, solo and even kosher travel, so it was strange to think that the second-largest

The widespread misunderstanding as to

religion in the UK, according to the 2011

what the Muslim travel market is and what

census, was completely under served.

Muslim travelers seek, incorrectly narrows

destination among the Muslim travelers.

over the next decade, if destinations invest

the market needs down to women-only

Another significant, need is for Muslim

in the relevant services and facilities and

In the UK and many other developed

beaches and alcohol-free hotels. However,

travelers to feel safe given the evident rise

the travel trade improves its knowledge of

nations, the Muslim travel market shares

having access to halal food, alcohol-free

in Islamophobic incidents.

the sector.

many similarities to the mass travel market,

personal spaces (for example, rooms),

however it is the difference between the

privacy for those special occasions and

The Muslim travel market has the potential

Read more on Muslim travel being one of

two that seems to perplex the industry.

being able to fulfill prayer obligations

to become a significant contributor to the

the largest untapped UK markets at Travel

There are more than three million Muslims

are key considerations when choosing a

UK inbound and outbound travel industry

Trade Gazette, known as TTG.


16 PEOPLE 3. What advice would you give to the younger kids who want to So it’s a people’s business. And you need pursue a career in the industry? yourself, because what you do is all day

long you deal with people for people.

to be able to explain the right thing, you

My advice would be to speak to the children

need to understand which language is your

to give them an advice to make them

opponent speaking, to choose the right

understand that where ever they start will not

words, always have in mind that your point

be where they finally end up. So they need

of view is most probably not his experience

to be patient. What they need to understand

level. What expectation which has been

and that one of the nicest experiences you

raised is a challenge so being aware about

can make in life is making someone happy.

your capabilities I think is the biggest

And if you work in hospitality you will have

challenge I faced and it’s not touching on

the chance of doing this daily. So and this

one specific sector. So, it’s in the food and

is I think the best motivation to share with

beverage department, in the house keeping

your children because what we do mostly

department, transportation department

is that we a driven by tasks. But we are

but as well in sales and marketing,

creating memories and sometimes this can

advertisement. So this has been the biggest

be difficult. So to advise them to be patient.

challenges to understand who I am, what can I do, where I am good at, how can I support best.

2. What are some of the most notable successes in your career?

PATRICK HOFFMANN RESIDENT MANAGER, HERITANCE AARAH

I think I see some challenges. Maldives is a beautiful place to be and in history is has been a luxury spot. Now this is

Definitely one of my successes has been the

changing slowly and with this changes the

openings I went through. Starting, building

government would need to make sure the

something from the scratch. First time in

infrastructure is given to keep the beauty

Slovenia I have been not in a management

of this spot. Because this is the biggest

position but as an assistant manager. Going

challenge. As more humans you will

out of your cultural comfort zone, going in

bring, more challenging it will be for the

to a new culture which you do not speak the

environment. And to find the right balance

language, where you are not understanding

between regulations and the freedom to

history because it has not been a part of

experience the beauty, the nature but as

your life. So learning something in action

well the beauty of the culture. This is I think

rather than reading a book or listening to

a challenge to find out. Therefore, you need

a class or training this has been one of my

to the right infrastructure.

biggest successes to understand that with

1. What are some of the hospitality industry for more than 22 years challenges you have faced?

all the experience and all the culture you

now. He’s also headed a few resort pre-

The biggest challenge is mostly I believe is

way there is always a different possibility to

openings in Maldives over the course of one

coming with the person itself. So you need

achieve a goal and to be open for this and

and a half years. He’s currently the Resident

to groom yourself, you need to educate

not being reluctant on saying but this is the

Manager at Heritance Aarah.

yourself and you need to be patient with

right way of doing.

Patrick Hoffmann has been working in the

4. What do you see in the future for tourism in Maldives?

have by yourself. There is always a different


PEOPLE

17

but now we have wine cellar with cocktail

you look at the number of passengers arrive

together, paired with food.

in this country the number of hotels that are opening just doesn’t match and occupancy

Our spa is located in the adult island

is dropping.

to avoid kids, thus giving couples more romantic atmosphere. The third bar is

I think when the government said they

underwater together with all the 2 other

would do the target for 3 million tourists,

restaurant we call that complex ‘Nilofaru’.

by the time they reach that target, this

Our Mediterranean restaurant is called

hotel will be doing good. But I think it will

Alifaan and Mahurab which is the 3rd bar

be a lot of challenges for the transportation

on the water. That’s our main bar.

and airport and all the other facilities needs to be doubled up too. Right now,

2. What are some challenges you have faced and what have been some of your accomplishments?

1.6 million tourists come to this country,

I think it’s just I believe my success is the

for the government wise and for us if the

work of my team. I think rest will come and

government bring the 3 million tourists, we

go but growing your team is what I’m proud

will be very happy.

we have just enough service available for them. I think there it will a lot of challenge

of. Even this hotel, I have my old managers,

ZAFER AGACAN GENERAL MANAGER, RADISSON BLU MALDIVES

3. What are some advices you’d I can tell that 80% of my managers worked like to give the youth interested in with me before. That’s I think the success the hospitality industry? I bring them here from previous hotels and

in developing your team and I’m proud of

I want to tell them to work hard and don’t

that.

expect to be general manager right after finishing the school. Because I saw some

The Radisson Blu Maldives is very unique

kids that as soon as they finish the school,

Zafer Agacan has been working in the field

All our rooms have swimming pools and

place at the moment because we have very

they think they are going to be a manager

of hospitality for over 20 years and in the

they are very spacious. They are 8 metres

easily accessible by seaplane and domestic

because they studied. But it’s a hard work

Maldives since 2004. Currently the General

by 2 and half metres pools for each room.

plane which makes our lives much easier.

and it’s a long way to go. Today people

Manager at one of the most anticipated

We have only 23 beach villas and rest of

resort developments in Maldives, Radisson

them are water villas. We have 7 food and

I think the only challenge I can say is finding

can work in middle east they can work in

Blu Maldives, he shares some views on

beverage outlets which includes our main

local talents. I think that is biggest problem

Europe and work in any Asian country. I

hospitality in Maldives.

fine dining restaurant, the Nikaya concept

in Maldives at the moment. Because we

think that makes us to a little bit trouble.

Japanese restaurant, Mediterranean grill

do not have enough of local talent. If you

I think we work for travel industry. I think

1. What can you say about Radisson Blu Maldives?

restaurant, fish and meet, and then we have

look may be 7 or 8 years ago when we have

what they should do they should just listen

Raha which is an Asian influenced all day

only 78 resort it was easier to find the local

the managers they should learn and they

Radisson Blu Maldives is our first resort in

dining restaurant. In addition to this we also

talent. But now the numbers doubled up.

should be patient. Because success will

Maldives and is our flagship property. We

have the lab which is our new F&B concept.

It is pretty hard I think is not a lot of hotel.

follow if they have the hard work there.

have 128 villas and we have an adult island.

In Maldives everyone has the Wine cellars

I think it’s all populated at the moment. If

here have the opportunity to grow, they

RADISSON BLU RESORT MALDIVES APPOINTS PRIYANKA TELI AS SALES MANAGER Radisson Blu Resort Maldives has appointed

She then moved to Fushifaru Maldives

Priyanka Teli as its new Sales Manager.

as Sales and Marketing Executive. Within 2 years at Fushifaru, she managed to

Priyanka started in the hospitality industry

climb up the leadership ladder to become

with JW Marriott Juhu Mumbai, the

the Associate Sales and Marketing Manager

iconic flagship property for JW Marriott

prior to her move to Radisson Blu Resort

in India as a coordinator in Training and

Maldives.

Development and found her way into the system. She later moved to ITC Fortune

Situated on the private island of Huruelhi,

Group, where she ventured into sales and

Radisson Blu Resort Maldives can be

marketing was considered and trusted with

reached by a 25-minute seaplane journey

by the General Manager of the property Mr.

from Velana International Airport (MLE), or

Chetan Bhatnagar: Fortune Select Exotica

a 20-minute domestic flight from the MLE

Navi Mumbai. This served as a foundation

airport to Villa Airport Maamigili (VAM),

for her at Sales and Marketing with high

followed by a 15-minute speedboat ride to

exposure into the corporate segment.

the resort.


18 PEOPLE guests leave being exceptionally happy and

biggest success. I’ve been very lucky to have

they are very sad to be leaving. Yes, it’s

worked with lots of different management

expensive but we over-deliver.

teams… but to see those managers grow and develop their careers has been

3. What other properties have you worked in the Maldives?

incredibly satisfying. In Maldives, one of my

I opened Centara Grand in South Ari Atoll

a GM in a Maldives resort. Another resort

and then I worked at Atmosphere Kanifushi.

manager I brought to Maldives 6 years ago

I’ve worked at Loama, briefly it was an

also a GM now. Being able to mentor people

Accor property… we were going to rebrand

and help their careers grow has been the

as MGallery. Unfortunately, that project

most rewarding. I think that is the key to

didn’t proceed. Then I transferred here to

my success.

resort managers of 10 years ago is currently

take over Mercure and the pre-opening, and finally opened Pullman.

4. Can you talk a little bit about the differences between Pullman and Mercure?

Your advice to those seeking to pursue a career in the industry? I think hospitality is the most amazing industry in the world. You can start anywhere you want, and you can achieve

Mercure is a beautiful boutique little resort

anything you want. You just need to have the

that I took over in December 2018. It’s an

passion and you have to keep the passion.

extraordinary small property located on

You can never become cynical. You have to

Kooddoo. With a boutique style property,

keep loving the people and you have to want

you can have a complete different service

to deliver that expectation to the guest. You

staff and Mercure is our 4-star brand.

need to actually feel it in your bones that

It’s a very relaxed service style and very

this is something you want to do because if

professional and we have a lot of fun there.

you’re trying to fake it, it doesn’t work. So, you have to love the industry and you have

Pullman is one of our upper upscale luxury

to have the passion.

brands. It is more of a contemporary style

fun. We have our four pillars: fitness, fun,

Some of the resorts in Maldives are very remote, located in the extreme ends of the country. Some consider this a disadvantage. What do you think about the properties being developed in faraway atolls like in Gaaf Alif atoll?

art and food. So here we have a concept

I think it’s great. To be honest, some people

resort so you’ll see a lot of art around the

JOHN BENDTSEN AREA GENERAL MANAGER, ACCORD HOTELS

property. A lot of big walls have mirrors. It’s a very young and happening environment and the demographic is 25 to 40-year-old travelers. It’s the adventure travelers who come to Pullman. They come for a sense of

John D. Bendtsen is the Area General

The second most challenging aspect is the

that is different from anywhere in the

look at us and say it’s a disadvantage being

Manager of Accor Hotels in Maldives.

people; as in the teams we develop, and the

Maldives. We have no butlers.

so far away from Malé. I think it’s actually an

He

in

cultures we develop within those teams. To

housekeeping and worked his way up

feel that culture growing and developing

The all-day dining restaurant has 6 à la

by other resorts. You actually get that

through 30 years of hard work to Assistant

within the first year of operations is an

minute stations and each live cooking

genuine one-island-one-resort concept.

General Manager, to General Manager, and

incredible gift.

station has its own nationality. So we have

You can’t see another resort just over there.

Chinese kitchen, Indian kitchen, Middle

At night, you can’t see the other resort’s

2. Having worked in all those countries all across the world, how did you end up in Maldives?

Eastern kitchen and so on. A massive

lights all around you so you genuinely get

variety of food. We have Phat Chameleon,

that full Maldivian experience.

I was working in Thailand at that time, and a

I guess we are among the few resorts in

Also, being located in an area that is being

headhunter asked if I would be interested in

Maldives that has an organic vegetarian

actively developed, the ocean is teeming with

working in Maldives. So I Googled Maldives

restaurant with vegan food as well because

life. The sea life hasn’t been scared away by

and found out that it was one of the most

the vegetarian food movement is the fastest

a hundred people snorkeling, scuba diving

challenging places to work as a hotelier. I

growing food movement in the world today.

and so on. Every time we go on our boats,

thought: this is fantastic! This is just what

We thought it was quite important to

we see dolphins. The sea life down here is

I think opening resorts and hotels is my

I like. I took the challenge and came over.

feature that, plus it also corresponds to the

incredible, plus I think it’s great for the local

biggest challenge. This property here is the

To me, it’s the most incredible place to

wellness mindset we are trying to influence

islands as well. We have a great relationship

eight opening of my career. I’ve opened

work and this is my fourth contract here.

to our guests and encourage them to eat

with the nearly local islands of Villingili and

hotels in Sydney, Australia, and Bangkok.

On and off, I have been here for 8 years. I

healthy.

Maamendhoo. We employ team members

I opened a resort in Maldives in 2009. I

have never seen water like we have in the

started

his

hospitality

career

now leads as Area General Manager of all Accor properties in The Maldives.

1. 30 years is a long time to have worked in the hospitality industry and no doubt you must have faced and overcome a lot of challenges in that time. What do you consider to be the most difficult challenges you have faced?

advantage because we are not surrounded

which is the organic vegetarian restaurant.

from both those islands. We also do a lot

What do you consider to be some a resort in Sri Lanka. I think opening resorts resorts and the service delivery we can of your biggest successes? opened three resorts in Mauritius. I opened

Maldives. I have never seen the quality of

of business with the local islands. We buy produce from them, we utilize their boats

in different countries other than your home

actually produce here. I think it’s the one

I think what I am most happy about is being

as well as their skill sets and mechanics. We

country is one of the biggest challenges.

country in the world I have worked where

able to help develop people. That’s the

buy fuel from them. Wherever possible we


PEOPLE 19 try to work with them, so it is a benefit for

the surrounding vegetation intact. What

year and you can see that reflected in the

bonus for us but I think you see a lot more

them and a benefit to us.

we’ve done is enhance the vegetation by

amount of new resorts that have opened in

innovative approaches to resort design. We

introducing more plants to that area and

Maldives. Everyone has a lot of confidence

are all striving for that point of difference,

blending the two together. The end result is

in the growth of Maldives. So, I think it’s

that unique selling point, as we call it, and

that you have a brand new resort that looks

brilliant.

to achieve that these days I think the new

Pullman Maldives Maamutaa’s landscaping is amazing! You have maintained and conserved the natural beauty of the island while developing a resort around it. This is very rare. What’s the story behind it?

like it’s a fully-grown forest. You don’t have one-foot tall trees so it gives that ambiance straight away.

developers coming up will have to try to be

What do you see in the future of the industry?

a lot more imaginative. It’s going to be a lot

I see a lot more innovation. I think now

with interesting new ideas.

more fun and they’ll need keep coming up

as people are developing resorts they

Now that we’re in 2020, what do make sense to basically bulldoze over the you have to say about the tourism existing trees and plants and then replant. industry of 2019?

are thinking innovatively. They are not

We had to clear some vegetation to

It was fantastic! The year-on-year growth

very contemporary in design. It’s not your

build, but we tried to clear just that spot,

of incoming tourists to the Maldives is quite

traditional Maldivian resort. Having a lake

replant as much as possible, and keep

astonishing. It’s consistently growing every

in the middle of the island is a natural

For us, as we developed the resort it didn’t

thinking to follow the same trends of the past. I mean, this property for example is

NUAS MOHAMED JOINS W MALDIVES AS DIRECTOR OF SALES AND MARKETING One of the most desirable names in the field

of Sales and Marketing. Nuas has also held

of Maldives tourism sales and marketing,

senior positions in sales and marketing at Six

Nuas Mohamed, has joined the business

Senses Laamu and also at Gili Lankanfushi

development team of W Maldives Resort.

for over 6 years.

This is in some way a home coming for Nuas, as he was among the early team member of

Commenting on this recent appointment,

sales of sales division at W Maldives when it

Hamza Saeed, the Product Director of Intour

opened doors in 2005.

Maldives said “it is very encouraging to see Maldivian talent taking top positions at

He has been working in hospitality for

international brands and famous properties

more than 15 years, starting off his career

in the Maldives, which means we have an

as a Butler and intentionally changing his

easier barrier when it comes to dealing with

career path to join sales and marketing at

such properties. We only wish Nuas best of

the award winning Huvafen Fushi, where he

luck in his new escape”.

most recently held the position of Director

RADISSON BLU RESORT MALDIVES APPOINTS AHMED NAUFAL AS DIRECTOR OF SALES Radisson Blu Resort Maldives has appointed

Executive to Cluster Assistant Reservations

Ahmed Naufal as Director of Sales.

Manager title. He has over 12 years of experience in the hospitality industry in

Naufal

worked

with

AccorHotels

the Maldives. He holds a Bachelors degree

resorts Raffles Maldives Meradhoo and

in Business Tourism Management from

Dhevanafushi Maldives Luxury Resort prior

Maldives National University.

to joining Radisson Blu Resort Maldives. He was the Associate Director of Sales

Situated on the private island of Huruelhi,

for 1 year 9 months at Dhevanafushi and

Radisson Blu Resort Maldives can be

held the post of Director of Sales at Raffles

reached by a 25-minute seaplane journey

Maldives Meradhoo.

from Velana International Airport (MLE), or a 20-minute domestic flight from the MLE

Naufal has also worked at Baros Maldives

airport to Villa Airport Maamigili (VAM),

for over 6 years where he climbed the

followed by a 15-minute speedboat ride to

way up starting from Reservations & Sales

the resort.


20 PEOPLE

GRAND PARK KODHIPPARU, MALDIVES PROMOTES KAPIL MATHUR TO DIRECTOR OF SALES

Grand Park Kodhipparu, Maldives has

Velana

promoted Kapil Mathur to Director of Sales.

Park Kodhipparu, Maldives is a luxurious

Possessing strong knowledge in the field of

one-island-one resort destination in the

sales, revenue management & reservations.

Maldives featuring a collection of 120 idyllic

Kapil started his career with The Oberoi,

beach-front pool villas, breathtaking over-

New Delhi, India in front office and gradually

water villas and spacious two-bedroom

progressed into reservations followed by

villas.

International

Designed by world-renowned hospitality Kapil moved to the Maldives 12 years

firm, Hirsch Bedner Associates, the resort is

ago and joined Universal Resorts in the

an oasis of luxury and tranquility featuring

reservations department where he served

open and breezy public spaces alongside

the company for nearly a decade until 2017.

modern interiors inspired by the Maldivian

He joined Grand Park Kodhipparu, Maldives

island, local traditions and crafts. An

in April 2017 as Revenue Manager. With

unrivaled

his keen interest in sales he soon became

includes an over water spa with seven

Assistant Director of Sales in January 2019

treatment

and then recently promoted to Director of

PADI dive facility, a recreation beach

Sales with effect from 1st January 2020

club, Little Explorers kids’ club, three

heading the entire sales department.

outstanding destination-dining offerings

Located on North Malé Atoll and a mere 20 minutes by speedboat from

Aalim Mohamed has been appointed

year prior to his move to Capella Hotels and

as the Director of Human Resources at

Resorts in Maldives.

Capella Hotels and Resorts in Maldives. Aalim has over 10 years of experience in

He will be leading the HR and Training

the hospitality industry. He has worked

function at Patina Maldives, which will

with Kanuhura Maldives, Huvafen Fushi,

be opening by end of this year. Capella’s

W Maldives and One and Only Reethi Rah

opening will be around 2022. Capella is

Maldives. He most recently worked at

Singapore-based company with several

The St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort as

resorts globally. Patina Maldives is the first

Director of Human Resources for over an

resort of its property in the Maldives.

Grand

revenue and finally sales.

range rooms,

and an infinity pool.

CAPELLA MALDIVES APPOINTS AALIM MOHAMED AS DIRECTOR OF HUMAN RESOURCES

Airport,

of

leisure a

facilities

fully-equipped


PEOPLE

CROSSROADS MALDIVES APPOINTS AUDRA ARUL AS CLUSTER DIRECTOR OF SALES AND MARKETING

21

CROSSROADS Maldives, the country’s

establishing a solid track record in hotel

largest integrated leisure and lifestyle

sales for various local and international

destination developed and operated by

hotel management companies, including

S Hotels and Resorts, has announced the

Hyatt and Marriott, in Kota Kinabalu,

appointment of Audra Arul as Cluster

Malaysia. After ten successful years, Ms.

Director of Sales and Marketing for the

Arul relocated to Bali, Indonesia, joining

complex, with responsibilities encompassing

Accor in her capacity as Director of Sales

its two newly opened hotels: SAii Lagoon

and Marketing for Le Meridien Nirwana Golf

Maldives, a Curio Collection by Hilton, and

and Spa. A year into this role, her duties

Hard Rock Hotel Maldives.

expanded and overlapped with concurrent pre-opening responsibilities for another Le

Audra Arul joins CROSSROADS Maldives

Meridien property, located on Hainan Island

to continue a successful career which

in southern China. In the next several years,

has focused on hotel sales and marketing

she subsequently pursued further hotel

with internationally recognized hospitality

commercial challenges, with successive

companies such as Accor, Marriott, Hyatt,

successful stints in Director of Sales and

and most recently, with Banyan Tree Hotels

Marketing roles in Hanoi, Vietnam, Yangon,

and Resorts. In her new role, Ms. Arul will

Myanmar and Phuket Thailand.

be responsible for the overall commercial objectives of CROSSROADS Maldives and

In 2016, Ms. Arul joined Banyan Tree

the two resorts, including achieving goals in

Hotels and Resorts as Area Director of

revenue generation, yield management and

Sales and Marketing based in Ho Chi Minh,

brand engagement.

Vietnam. After two years, she then relished the challenge of relocating out of Asia and

An international hospitality veteran with

moved to northern Africa, assuming the

more than two decades of experience,

position of Director of Sales and Marketing

Ms. Arul began her career journey by

for Banyan Tree Tamouda Bay, Morocco.

BANYAN TREE VABBINFARU AND ANGSANA IHURU APPOINTS EXECUTIVE CHEF MICHAEL ALI YUSUF Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru and Angsana Ihuru

changes and additional flavors that he will

have announced the appointment of the

bring in.

new Executive Chef, Michael Ali Yusuf. Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru and Angsana Michael brings with him 10 years’ culinary

Ihuru are located in North Male’ Atoll, just

experience working with luxury brands in

25 minutes away by speedboat from the

West Africa and Seychelles such as George

airport. The two resorts are just 2 minutes

Hotel by Mantis Collection, Hilton Labriz

by boat away from each other therefore

Seychelles and recently, The Legend Hotel

guests of each resort can enjoy the facilities

Lagos Curio Collection by Hilton.

of both including two of the most vibrant and well-preserved house reefs in the North

Michael has a strong background in Italian Cuisine and the culinary team of both islands are excited to welcome the new

Male’ Atoll.


22 AVIATION

HI FLY BECOMES THE WORLD’S FIRST AIRLINE TO OPERATE PLASTIC-FREE FLIGHTS From January 1st 2020, as pledged by

saving a total of 350 kilograms of plastic.

Portuguese airline Hi Fly President Paulo

Glass bottles were collected to be sanitized

Mirpuri in 2018, all Hi Fly’s own flights

and refilled and any card and paper were

are taking to the air without any single-use

gathered to be recycled.

plastic items on-board. “Over 100,000 flights take off each The company launched a plastic-free

day around the world and, last year,

trial on four flights last month, replacing

commercial aircraft carried nearly four

cutlery with compostable bamboo cups and

billion passengers. This number is expected

spoons. Salt and pepper shakers, bedding

to double again in less than 20 years. So,

packaging

butter

the potential to make a difference here is

pots, soda bottles, and toothbrushes were

clearly enormous,” President Paulo Mirpuri

swapped for more sustainable alternatives.

said.

dishes,

single-serve

According to Hi Fly, the trial, which took place over the New Year holiday period,

While the trial period has ended, Hi Fly is

was a success. More than 700 passengers

now committed to eliminating single-use

were

plastic from all flights.

served

sustainable

alternatives,

FOUR NEW AIRPORTS TO OPEN IN 2020 Four new airports being developed in the

airports from the Velaana International

Maldives are set to open in 2020, as per the

Airport,

Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation,

Airport, Gan International Airport, Villa

Hon. Aishath Nahula.

International Airport, Maafaru International

Hanimaadhoo

International

Airport, and domestic airports at Baa According to the Minister, these four airports

Dharavandhoo, Raa Ifuru, Th Thimarafushi,

are developed at Haa Alif Hoarafushi,

Dhaalu Kudahuvadhoo, Gaaf Alif Kooddoo,

Shaviyani Funadhoo, Lhaviyani Madhivaru,

Gaaf Dhaal Kaadedhoo, Laamu Kadhdhoo,

and Gaafu Dhaalu Maavarulu. Shaviyani

Haa

Funadhoo and Gaafu Dhaalu Maavarulu

Fuvahmulah airport.

Dhaal

Kulhudhuhfushi,

and

Gn.

airports are expected to open in the first

SRI LANKAN AIRLINES LAUNCHES SPECIAL 40KG BAGGAGE PROMOTION Ace Aviation Services Maldives, the general

for Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok and Singapore

sales agent for SriLankan Airlines has

(on Return Sector). Customers are advised

launched a special 40kg baggage promotion.

to book and travel till 31st March 2020

The offer is valid from passengers traveling

under this special promotion.

from Male’ and Gan and is applicable

quarter of 2020. Haa Alif Hoarafushi and

Establishing airports within 20 minutes

Lhaviyani Madhivaru airports are expected

of each habited island was a pledge of

to open in the second quarter of 2020.

the previous government and the current

There are 14 airports currently operating in

government is working toward the same

the Maldives. These include the international

goals.


AVIATION 23

ETIHAD AIRWAYS OPERATES ECO-FLIGHT FROM ABU DHABI TO BRUSSELS airspace navigation service provider Euro

demand for air travel. It is also a key priority

control to reduce fuel consumption and

of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, in which

carbon emissions.

Etihad is a critical driver of both social and economic development.

A range of other initiatives were also undertaken before, during and after the

“This year’s national theme of the United

flight including fuel optimization measures

Arab Emirates is ‘2020: Towards the

and other actions in collaboration with

next 50’. Etihad is committed to working

partners including Brussels Airport and a

continuously with a range of partners

range of cabin service suppliers to highlight

as part of a broader national focus on

incremental opportunities to reduce the

environmental sustainability.”

airline’s impact on the environment.

Etihad

Airways

marked

Abu

The flight was timed to coincide with the

The 2020s are likely to be a decade with

start of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week,

a huge focus on sustainable aviation. With

an annual event held in the UAE capital

the rising emphasis placed on aviation’s

to highlight sustainable initiatives across a

2.5% of global CO2 emissions, the industry

broad range of areas.

is looking to play its part. Etihad is off to a strong start in these regards.

Dhabi

Flight EY 57 departed on 13 January using a

Sustainability Week 2020 by operating

Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft, the newest

The Group Chief Executive Officer of

a special ‘eco-flight’ from Abu Dhabi to

and most efficient type in the Etihad fleet,

Etihad Aviation Group, Tony Douglas,

At the Dubai Airshow, the airline announced

Brussels, featuring a range of initiatives

which consumes at least 15% less fuel than

said: “Sustainable practice is a critical and

a partnership with Boeing to trial green

designed to illustrate the airline’s broad

any aircraft type previously flown by the

continuing challenge for the air transport

technologies on one of its Boeing 787

commitment to sustainable practices in the

airline. The aircraft followed an optimized

industry, which is striving to reduce carbon

aircraft,

air and on the ground.

flight route facilitated by the European

emissions and waste, while meeting soaring

Greenliner.

affectionately

dubbed

the

discover turkey FLY WITH TURKISHAIRLINES

EXPEDITE MALDIVES | PHONE NO: 3009595 | VIBER: 7229595 | EMAIL: SALES@EXPEDITEMALDIVES.COM


24 AVIATION

QATAR AIRWAYS AND MALAYSIA AIRLINES ANNOUNCE SIGNIFICANT CODESHARE EXPANSION forward to sharing our Malaysian hospitality

recognition of its ground-breaking Business

further and provide a truly Malaysian

Class experience, Qsuite. It is the only

experience for our passengers.”

airline to have been awarded the coveted ‘Skytrax Airline of the Year’ title, which is

Sales

for

selected

new

codeshare

destinations will open today, 15 January,

recognized as the pinnacle of excellence in the airline industry, five times.

when Malaysia Airlines customers will be able to book travel on Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways operates a modern fleet of

flights from Doha to Vienna, Brussels,

more than 250 aircraft via its hub, Hamad

Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Munich, Athens,

International Airport (HIA), to more than

Rome, Oslo, Barcelona, Madrid, Geneva,

160 destinations worldwide. The world’s

and

fastest-growing

Zurich.

In

turn,

Qatar

Airways

airline

added

several

passengers will be able to book Malaysia

new destinations to its network last year,

Airlines flights to Sibu, Alor Setar, Medan,

including Rabat, Morocco; Izmir, Turkey;

and Surabaya.

Malta; Davao, Philippines; Lisbon, Portugal;

Qatar Airways has announced expanded

network to 24. Qatar Airways Group Chief

codeshare

Malaysia

Executive, His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al

Airlines, starting from 27 January 2020. The

Baker, said: “Since 2001, both airlines

Qatar Airways began flying to Kuala

and Gaborone, Botswana. The airline will

new codeshare agreement will strengthen

have witnessed the significant benefits

Lumpur, Malaysia in 2001, now a triple daily

add Osaka, Japan; Santorini, Greece;

the two airlines’ strategic partnership, first

codeshare

brought,

service. Penang, Malaysia was launched in

Dubrovnik, Croatia; Almaty and Nur-

initiated in 2001.

providing passengers with unrivaled service

February 2018, initially with three weekly

Sultan, Kazakhstan; Accra, Ghana; Cebu,

and seamless connections. The expansion

flights that increased to five weekly flights

Philippines; Trabzon, Turkey; Lyon, France;

destinations

of codeshare cooperation between Qatar

in October 2019. A five-time weekly service

Siem Reap, Cambodia; and Luanda, Angola

covered by the airlines’ current codeshare

Airways and Malaysia Airlines is a natural

to Langkawi, via Penang, was launched in

to its extensive network in 2020.

cooperation, the expanded agreement

next step in the strengthening of our

October 2019. In 2001, Qatar Airways

will allow Malaysia Airlines passengers to

partnership.”

and Malaysia Airlines announced their first

Malaysia Airlines serves 59 destinations

codeshare agreement, which was expanded

from its hub, Kuala Lumpur International

With

10

cooperation

Qatar

with

Airways

cooperation

have

book travel to 20 additional Qatar Airways

Mogadishu, Somalia; Langkawi, Malaysia;

gateways in Europe, America, and Africa.

Malaysia Airlines Group Chief Executive,

in 2018, to provide greater connectivity and

Airport

In turn, Qatar Airways passengers will

Mr. Izham Ismail, said: “Malaysia Airlines

new destinations to their passengers.

partners, customers of both airlines are

benefit from access to four exciting new

is delighted to further develop and grow

destinations in South East Asia. They can

our relationship with Qatar Airways with

A multiple award-winning airline, Qatar

flyer status and benefits including access

now book travel on Malaysia Airlines’

this codeshare agreement. Through this

Airways was named ‘World’s Best Airline’ by

to lounges worldwide, through check-in,

flights to Sibu, Malaysia; Alor Setar,

cooperation, we will be able to provide

the 2019 World Airline Awards, managed

extra baggage allowance, plus accrual and

Malaysia; Medan, Indonesia; and Surabaya,

travel options for our outbound travelers as

by Skytrax. It was also named ‘Best Airline

redemption of miles, priority check-in and

Indonesia. This brings the total number

well as inviting more travelers to experience

in the Middle East’, ‘World’s Best Business

boarding across the carriers’ networks.

of codeshare routes in Malaysia Airlines’

the beauty Malaysia has to offer. We look

Class’, and ‘Best Business Class Seat’, in

(KUL).

As

Oneworld

alliance

ensured recognition of their frequent-

TRANS MALDIVIAN AIRWAYS WELCOMES 56TH SEAPLANE TO ITS FLEET Trans Maldivian Airways (TMA) continues

aircraft to transport tourists to island-based

to expand with another addition to its

resorts. In doing so, it has made a significant

seaplane fleet today, making a total of 56

contribution to the development of tourism

seaplanes under its umbrella.

in the Maldives, which in turn has resulted in major benefits to the national economy.

Taking pride in being one of the largest

TMA operates its own seaplane terminal

seaplane operators in the world, TMA

at Velana International Airport with many

transfers tourists to over 60 resorts

exclusive resort lounges and a fleet of air-

spread

Maldives

conditioned buses, VIP vehicles, baggage

archipelago. Furthermore, in December

vehicles and many dedicated resort vehicles

2019, TMA had brought out 2 seaplanes at

for intra-airport transfers. The doorstep

once.

delivery and pick up at the resorts are done

out

through

the

at floating platforms, customized as resort TMA is the oldest and, in many ways, one of

airports. Trans Maldivian transports about

the most experienced air transfer operator

1 million passengers per year.

in the Maldives. It pioneered the use of


AVIATION 25

MANTA AIR: A LOOK BACK AT THE YOUNG AIRLINE WHICH REVOLUTIONIZED THE INDUSTRY From exemplary service to customer

significant impact it has had on the industry.

exactly when the flight is while booking the

and to make sure that everyone can fly

centricity to arrive at long-term success, we

Manta Air introduced the country’s first

ticket.

#LikeAManta. Even on new year’s eve, the

take a look at the Maldives newest Airline,

fixed scheduled transfer service with pre-

Manta Air.

published flight schedules. The airline

The airline is also recognized for its

gift on board as they started their new year

became the first airline to guarantee a

customer-centric approach to its service.

celebrations by providing specially packed

Manta Air started its operations in 2019

spot for passengers upon booking a seat

From its customer care service from the

macaroons for each passenger.

and in the airline’s young life, it has

and also the first airline in the Maldives to

airport to celebrations with special gifts

achieved a lot from opening 3 destinations

provide 2 seating classes; Comfort Class &

to passengers to customizing its seating

As the airline approaches its 1 year in

(Kudahuvadhoo, Dharavandhoo & Kooddoo)

Sapphire Class.

arrangement by removing 2 seats of seating

operations, the airline reports that it aims

rows to provide extra legroom for its

to keep innovating and to bring even more revolutionary change to the airline industry.

in its first year to starting its seaplane

airline made sure its customers got a special

operations. The biggest achievement for

This has aided a lot of major challenges

customers, the airline keeps on showcasing

the airline has been revolutionizing the

for Maldivians & tourists traveling in the

its commitment to providing the best

aviation industry in its short period and the

Maldives as now passengers will know

experience in the skies of the Maldives


26 TRAVEL TECH

TRAVEL TRADE MALDIVES LAUNCHES NEW WEBSITE WITH A TRAVEL CHANNEL Travel Trade Maldives (TTM) has launched

The TTM portfolio of products includes

its new website with a travel channel, Maldives Leading Travel Trade Show along TTM+. TTM is the leading travel trade

with TTM Travel Summit and TTM Awards

business resource for tourism industry

& Gala, bi-monthly print periodical, travel

developments in the Maldives.

channel TTM+ and the online news portal www.traveltrademaldives.com.

The launch took place today at the Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation

Orca Media Group is a leading media

(MMPRC) office. The website was launched

and marketing agency in Maldives. TTM is

by MMPRC Managing Director Thoyyib

a product of Orca Media Group.

Mohamed and Orca Media Group’s Chief Operating Officer Dr. Sunny Umar.


AWARDS/ LISTINGS / FEATURES 27

HERITANCE AARAH RESORT GLOBALLY RECOGNIZED FOR SUSTAINABILITY

Heritance Aarah Resort has celebrated

The design of the resort compliments the

worldwide recognition for its sustainable

coverage of sustainability by implementing

initiatives.

elements equivalent to gasoline saving turbines, vitality saving LED lighting, water

Situated in Raa Atoll and accessible from

saving fixtures and vitality environment

Velana

friendly air con.

Worldwide

Airport

through

a

40-minute seaplane flight, Heritance Aarah boasts 150 villas, six eating places, 5 bars, a

Talking in regards to the success of

PADI dive centre and the primary of its type

Heritance Aarah, Stasshani Jayawardena,

IASO Medi Spa.

Chairperson

of

Aitken

Spence

Inns,

mentioned: “We’re honored that Heritance The resort additionally supplies company

Aarah has been introduced with quite a

with a variety of excursions and curated

few accolades after only a few months of

experiences to select from.

opening.”

In September, Heritance Aarah grew to

“A key precedence is to make sure our

become the first ever property within the

resorts contribute positively to guard and

Maldives to be awarded the internationally

protect the setting and the ecosystems we

recognized Management in Power and

function in so we’re proud that Heritance

Environmental Design Gold certification,

Aarah has been named as the primary

which complies with the US Inexperienced

LEED Gold licensed property within the

Constructing Council score system and

Maldives.”

is awarded to properties that save vitality, water and assets; generate much less waste; and help human well being.

VOGUE ARABIA: MALDIVES SPECIAL WITH KUWAIT’S LEADING LADY HAYA ABDULSALAM Vogue Arabia January 2020 issue features

when its first issue was published in March

the Maldives along with Kuwait’s leading

2017.

lady Haya Abdulsalam as she dives into an idyllic escape at Pullman Maldives

Haya Abdulsalam shares how she unwinds

Maamutaa Resort. This is part of the

when she is the most comfortable, and

continued efforts by Maldives Marketing

making time out of her busy schedule for

and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC)

herself and her family.

for the destination marketing campaign. She is seen wearing dresses by Marques’ Vogue Arabia is the Arab edition of Vogue

Almeida, Givenchy and Mary Katrantzou

magazine. It is distributed in several Middle

for the shoot. She also wears kaftans

East countries, including Saudi Arabia,

by Dolce & Gabbana and Andrew Gn at

Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, United Arab

Robinson’s along with a feather headpiece

Emirates, Jordan, and Lebanon. Vogue

by Giambattista Valli. The photographer for

Arabia became the 22nd edition of Vogue

the shoot was Gianluca Fontana.


28 AWARDS/ LISTINGS / FEATURES

COMO COCOA ISLAND, INTERCONTINENTAL MALDIVES LANDS LIST OF 20 NEW ASIA PACIFIC LUXURY HOTELS Como Cocoa Island and InterContinental

third of the island, a pilates studio, and a

Maldives have landed the CNN’s list of 20

gym.

stunning new Asia Pacific luxury hotels to check into in 2020.

The first property by InterContinental Hotels & Resorts in the Maldives opened

The list consists of 20 of the most exciting

last September and is located in one of the

new luxury hotels from the mountains of

country’s most secluded spots, namely near

Bhutan to the energetic buzz of Bangkok or

Baa Atoll, a UNESCO biosphere reserve in

relaxing in a quiet retreat in rural Japan.

the Indian Ocean. Guests have the option to choose from 81 overwater, beach and

COMO

Cocoa

Island

is

an

intimate

lagoon villas. The resort also houses a

private Maldives island resort surrounded

three-bedroom Royal Beachfront Residence

by a beautiful turquoise lagoon and an

with 790 square meters of luxury. There

exceptional house reef. The resort has 34

are no fewer than six bars and restaurants

overwater villas where guests can head

and every guest also gets access to Club

straight from the balcony into the turquoise

InterContinental amenities. They also have

waters underneath to see the teeming sea

a spa housed in six overwater treatment

life. Other relaxation and fitness options

villas.

include a wellness center that takes up a

SPANISH BAND MANTRA LAUNCHES, MUSIC VIDEO FEATURING JUMEIRAH VITTAVELI The new Spanish band MANTRA has

The band MANTRA is made up of 3

launched on January 10, with their first

incredibly talented musicians, Paula Perez,

song No Te Eperaba. The video for the song

Carlos Marco, and Carlos Weinberg. Carlos

was filmed at Jumeirah Vittaveli Maldives.

Weinberg has visited Jumeirah Vittaveli

The band stayed last year in August and also

before and recorded his hit songs Like This

gave an exclusive unplugged performance

and La Verdad at the island.

for the resort’s in house guests. Their launch promotional tour will start now Jumeirah Vittaveli released a statement

and focus on Spain and Southern Europe.

saying, “We are happy to be part of the journey for MANTRA and look forward to seeing and hearing much more from them in the coming months.

Hawks Hotels advert.pdf 1 2/16/2020 12:29:52 PM

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AWARDS/ LISTINGS / FEATURES 29

KUREDU ISLAND RESORT AWARDED THE TUI ENVIRONMENTAL CHAMPION 2020 Kuredu Island Resort has been awarded the

Kuredu is a more responsible resort every

TUI Environmental Champion award for the

year.”

fifth consecutive year. In 2017, Kuredu significantly reduced the The TUI Environmental Champion audit

number of single-use plastics at the resort

covers a wide range of criteria in areas

(and planned on eradicating single-use

of conservation of the environment and

plastic straws completely by September

implementation of social responsibility.

2018). They encourage guests to use reusable water flasks, continue providing

The resort released a statement saying,

in-house bottled water, use cutlery made

“This important award is a testament to

from biodegradable materials at events

the resort’s ongoing, measurable actions

whenever possible, and work hard to raise

toward sustainable hotel management.

eco-awareness among guests, team and

We are pleased to have again received this

local communities alike.

accolade, but even more so that thanks to the guidance of TUI that complements and

Kuredu is also a proud recipient of the

enhances our commitment to sustainability,

Travelife Gold Award for 2018-2020.

LILY BEACH RESORT, BANYAN TREE VABBINFARU, KURUMBA MALDIVES AMONG TRIPADVISOR’S TOP ALLINCLUSIVE RESORTS Lily Beach Resort & Spa, Banyan Tree

Landing in the 19th position was Banyan

Vabbinfaru and Kurumba Maldives have

Tree Vabbinfaru. Banyan Tree Vabbinfaru

been listed among TripAdvisor’s top all-

opened its door in 1995 and is the first

inclusive resorts for vacations in 2020.

international chain resort in the Maldives. With just 48 pool villas dotting around the

The 25 award-winning locations range

island, privacy and relaxation can easily be

from a mountainside escape in Patagonia

attained. The resort has a restaurant, bar,

to a seaside stay next to the crystal clear

PADI Gold Palm 5-Star resort dive centre,

waters of the Maldives. The winners are

and a Banyan Tree Spa. It is also home to

determined by the quantity and quality

the Banyan Tree Maldives Marine Lab, the

of traveler reviews over the course of the

first of its kind to be funded and built on

past year, in addition to booking interest

a private resort, where guests can learn

for those spots. Additionally, TripAdvisor’s

about marine conservation and partake in

Price Finder tool compares the cost of

the many sustainability activities on offer

a number of these resorts against other

including coral planting, reef cleaning, and

popular booking companies to ensure the

daily stingray feeding sessions.

best price possible for the trip. The 14th spot on the list was given to Lily Kurumba Maldives bagged the 24th position

Beach Resort & Spa. Nestled on a private

of the list.Kurumba was the very first

island amidst the serene clear blue water

private island resort in the Maldives when

of the Indian ocean, Lily Beach Resort is

it opened its doors in 1972 in the Indian

the first all-inclusive resort in the Maldives.

Ocean archipelago of the Maldives. Opened

Close to Male, just 25 Minutes from a

by four young Maldivians on an uninhabited

seaplane, Lily Beach offers premium food

coconut plantation island in October 1972,

& beverage options with an extensive list of

Kurumba marked the beginning of the

wines & spirits.

tourism industry in the country.


30 ACCOMMODATION

VAKKARU MALDIVES PLEDGES SUPPORT FOR AUSTRALIAN BUSHFIRE

Vakkaru Maldives hosted a charity dinner to

“We hope our contribution helps the

support the Australian bushfire crisis. Held

incredible WIRES team to rescue and care

on January 11, 2019, the dinner raised

for as many sick, injured and orphaned

funds for the for Wildlife Information,

native animals as possible.”

Rescue and Education Service (WIRES). Guests were invited to an AustralianVakkaru

General

Manager,

Nicholas

themed dinner at Vakku Grill. The set

Mason, has strong ties to Australia and said

menu dinner was inspired by the country’s

he and his team were moved by the plight of

food culture, using an array of produce and

Australia and its wildlife and wanted to raise

supplies from Australia and the Maldives

money for WIRES’ dedicated emergency

curated by Nicholas Mason – general

fundraiser.

manager, Prasong Taochan – executive chef and Stefanie Wiesner - sommelier.

“We’re located in a UNESCO biosphere reserve here in the Baa Atoll, so we

The menu items included braised pork

understand the importance and fragility

belly with vegemite sauce, grilled Australian

of healthy ecosystems,” he said. “It’s

black angus beef tenderloin and Tasmanian

heartbreaking to see so many injured

salmon couscous and chai cake for the

animals and such widespread loss of life

main course as well as choices of pavlova

and natural habitat.”

and lamington for the dessert.

COCO BODU HITHI TO LAUNCH FIRST FLOATING FITNESS STUDIO IN MALDIVES WITH AQUAX ACADEMY popular fitness activity. As with regular

yoga retreat led by elite instructors from

yoga, floating yoga utilizes the principles

AquaX Academy as part of the “Ocean

of

flexibility, and

Sweat Life” SUP retreat program advocated

meditation. The practice of floating yoga

by Queenie and her fellow lululemon

allows guests to embrace the benefit of

ambassadors who share the love for ocean

yoga in nature, while also participating

and fit-living lifestyle . The retreat will

in an invigorating and unique workout by

take place from 15th – 19th March and

constantly finding balance on the moving

will include regular yoga classes as well as

water.

introductory Stand-up paddling and floating

balance,

strength,

yoga sessions in the sea. Shafa Shabeer, the Director of Marketing for Coco Bodu Hithi, said about the

Queenie said about this exciting new

collaboration, “We are incredibly excited

program, “I believe that bringing workout

to be collaborating with AquaX Academy to

to water is an exercise regime change

Leading luxury resort Coco Bodu Hithi is

Using stand-up paddle boards in the pristine

launch the very first floating fitness studio

which makes our members happier. The

set to launch the first floating yoga studio

lagoon of the island, recreational stand up

in the Maldives, as they are leaders in the

challenge-seeking active society is looking

in the Maldives in collaboration with AquaX

paddle classes and floating yoga classes will

fitness industry. This will be an exciting

forward to extending their practice to

Academy from Beijing, China. Founded

be made available to guests at Coco Bodu

experience for our guests, where they can

nature, in which we are excited to take the

by lululemon China Ambassador Queenie

Hithi beginning in March 2020.

enjoy our beautiful waters in a new way.”

lead.”

water sports and the first to introduce a

Floating yoga, also known as stand-up

As part of this collaboration, Coco Bodu

floating studio concept in China.

paddleboard

Hithi will also be hosting a four-day SUP-

Xiao, the academy is a pioneer of innovative yoga,

is

an

GET ALL YOUR SPORTS & RECREATION REQUIREMENTS farish@soneesports.com.mv | T +960 333 5995 | +960 798 3352

increasingly


ACCOMMODATION

PULLMAN MALDIVES MAAMUTAA: DEFINING A NEW AGE OF WELLNESS TOURISM IN MALDIVES

31

Wellness is one of the biggest trends in the

Bootcamps are one of the most popular

travel industry today where destinations

types of exercise workouts today as it

around the world are seeking to put

gets fast results. Pullman Maldives offers

themselves on the radar of wellness-minded

bootcamp-style

travelers.

‘Raaveriya’. Raaveriya brings a unique type

beach

workout

called

of Maldivian energy and twist to the bootIf you’re looking to travel to a tropical

camp sessions. The workouts combine the

destination and still want to stick to

high-energy, frenetic moves of traditional

your wellness routine, Pullman Maldives

Maldivian dance ‘Boduberu’ with the kind

Maamutaa is the place to be. Maamutaa is

of movements used by local boat-builders

the first Maldives resort to capitalize on and

and other Maldivian traditional crafts to the

join the trend of wellness tourism.

workout.

Pullman takes a holistic and integrated

At the conclusion of the session, a swig of

approach to wellbeing built on sleep,

the local drink ‘toddy’ will ensure you stay

food, sport and spa by offering fun,

re-hydrated and refreshed to face the day.

innovative fitness experiences that balance

Pullman also offers high intensity cardio

performance with enjoyment, leaving you

classes with Body Combat and Zumba. Get

wanting more.

the chance to enjoy a Zumba session in the water with Pool Zumba or at the beach with

Pullman Maldives offers relaxing yoga sessions

during

sunrise

and

Beach Zumba.

sunset,

throughout the week. Or if you’re looking

Other workouts include exercises aimed at

to take it up a notch, one should try floating

different muscle groups with the fat burn

yoga. Imagine yourself doing yoga on top

class, bum lift or the flat tummy workout.

of a dhoni in the middle of the ocean. With

They also offer ABS Pilates and circuit

only the soft breezes, the gentle sound of

training.

waves, and hypnotic rocking motion of the sea as your companion.

FURAVERI MALDIVES REINVENTS WITH NEW VILLAS AND ‘WELLNESS VILLAGE’ Furaveri Island Resort and Spa is reinventing

gentle mantas that visit them, are all paid

itself in this year. All set to launch with 33

homage to in its new brand identity.

newly built villas and additional upgrades, the resort is re-branding into a four-star

In addition to being already recognized for

deluxe property to be known as Furaveri

its lush marine ecosystems, Furaveri is also

Maldives.

set to home the first Wellness Village in the Maldives. This local village concept hosts a

In giving new life to the Furaveri experience,

peaceful sanctuary in itself, complete with

the resort found inspiration by listening to

facilities adopting ancient healing practices

the inherent beauty of the island and its

to immerse guests in lasting holistic

culture. Staying true to core values such

experiences.

as making the best of what they have, they tuned in to the simple beauty of the

Furaveri Maldives released a statement

surroundings and followed their hearts with

stating, “Our hearts are colored with

nature as a guide.

gratitude and excitement as we invite you to join us in envisioning what it means to

Visually, for this renewal, the resort

capture the best of authentic Maldivian

invoked the color teal of where the open

hospitality.”

ocean meets the lagoon and the warm sunset yellow of memorable evenings by the beach. The white herons throughout the island, the vibrant screwpine trees, the frequent turtles in the resort’s reef and the


32 ACCOMMODATION

MALDIVES: A DESTINATION WHERE INNOVATIONS HAPPEN Remote rooftops and breath-taking underwater world of the stop there. Overwater villas are now who visits the country will experience, but observatories The gorgeous sandy white beaches and

However, for Maldives, it does not simply

are time-honored activities that everyone

Maldives have often been referred to as

considered a basic room type, and even

why stop there? Over the years, Maldives

The beauty of the Maldives is not just limited

paradise on earth by visitors. And rightly

slightly anachronistic as there’s nary a resort

has taken it to the next level and dining

to the beaches and underwater marine life.

so! With over 1,000 small tropical islands

that does not have at least one. Resorts like

under the sea has become a trend. Luxury

Guests can get to see the mesmerizing sky

scattered over the Indian Ocean like a string

Conrad Maldives Rangali Island raised the

underwater restaurants are among the

views and indulge in stargazing.

of pearls, it is one of the most geographically

bar recently by introducing the world’s first

most unique dining experiences available

Soneva pioneered the opportunity to

dispersed countries in the world. In fact, the

underwater villa. The jaw-dropping design

in the world. Not everyone can boast about

see the stars in the middle of the ocean.

Maldives is only 1% of land and 99% sea.

is named Muraka (“coral” in Dhivehi, the

being able to dine with the fishes.

Soneva Fushi is the first resort in the world

A statistic that has contributed immensely

local language of the Maldives) and sits 16

to the development of various innovative

feet and 4 inches below the surface of the

Currently,

‘tourist attractions’ inspired by and from

ocean.

restaurants in the Maldives. They are

the sea that surrounds the beautiful island

where guests can get acquainted with 3D there

are

6

underwater

astronomy.

Ithaa at Conrad Maldives Rangali Island,

The Soneva group went on to take star

Another innovative guest accommodation

5.8 Undersea at Hurawalhi Island Resort,

gazing to the next level and installed

which made headlines all over the world is

SEA at Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas,

Accommodations: From Maldives style water villas to Bubble

retractable roofs at almost all of its villas at

the Bubble. Guests can now either spend

SUBSIX at Niyama Private Islands, M6m

Soneva Jani. It opens in about 22 seconds

a cozy night inside a bubble on the beach

at OZEN by Atmosphere at Maadhoo, and

and spans a spectacular 4 by 4 meters.

The luxury overwater villas of Maldives

at Seaside Finolhu or a Skyhouse Bubble at

H2O at You & Me Maldives.

The system is equipped with a rain sensor.

(usually referred to as “Maldives-style

Amilla Fushi for an extraordinary experience

water villas) are famous across the globe,

with amazing views of the sunset.

nation.

When rainfall is detected the roof closes In addition, while celebrating its 10,000th

and it is a concept that many countries

dive, Whale Submarine Maldives launched

Dine-in options: Dinner at accommodations for the upmarket and Underwater restaurant? Or inside luxury travelers. Even India, Dubai, Qatar a submarine?

the world’s first underwater dinner in a

and other popular tourist destinations have

Many tourists agree that the real beauty of

served their lunch and dinner 120ft under

developed ‘Maldives-style’ water villas to

Maldives is below the surface of its beautiful

the most beautiful marine environment on

add to their list of accommodation types.

crystal clear sea. Diving and snorkeling

the planet.

have taken inspiration from when designing

submarine option. That’s right, visitors to the Maldives now have the option to be

automatically.


ACCOMMODATION 33

GRAND PARK KODHIPPARU, MALDIVES PLEDGES TO BAN PLASTIC STRAWS Grand Park Kodhipparu, Maldives has

benefiting the environment, they are eco-

pledged to ban plastic straws. Plastic

friendly and contributes to less waste in

straws have quickly become a symbol of

landfill.

the world’s unnecessary reliance on plastic. Even more, they have become a symbol of

“We are consistently seeking new innovative

plastic’s horrific effects on the environment.

ways to incorporate world eco trends into

One way to reduce the impact of plastic

our daily island operations, whilst ensuring

straws on the environment is to simply stop

the guest journey and team efficiency are

using plastic straws: Team at Grand Park

at the forefront. The recent removal of

Kodhipparu, Maldives encourages guests

all single-use straws on our island is one

to either drink directly from a glass or use a

of many initiatives that we have launched

reusable alternative to plastic.

and plan to launch soon” said Dean Jarvis, Director Food & Beverage.

Reusable stainless-steel straws are such an alternative. They are much better than plastics, for more than just the reason of


34 ACCOMMODATION Singer,

MYLEENE KLASS AND FAMILY HELP WITH BEACH CLEAN UP WHILE IN THE MALDIVES GETAWAYS

media

presenter,

model

and

did a beach clean with Outrigger hosts on a

ambassador for Save the Children (UK),

neighboring island.

Myleene Klass relaxed with her family at

She wrote: “Doing this with my son strapped

Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort during

to me and my daughters leading the charge,

the Christmas and New Year festive period.

makes me so proud to see them consciously

She and her young family also volunteered

taking action. They could have stayed in the

to clean up plastic from a neighboring

pool all day, eating ice cream, they’re on

island in the atoll.

holiday after all, but they chose to set their alarms, to join in and to be the change they

Klass posted pictures to her Instagram

want to see in the world. I love my kids!”

account of her family, baby son Apollo (4 months) and daughters Ava (12) and Hero

A video of her family cleaning the beach

(8), and her partner Simon, all relaxing

was also posted on her Instagram account.

while wearing Christmas hats on Konotta’s

John Allanson, General Manager, of the

idyllic tropical palm beach.

Outrigger Konotta Maldives Resort, said: “Myleene and her family did a great job

Klass wrote on her Instagram account:

collecting plastic and polystyrene. They

“Merry Xmas to you and your loved ones. I

really got into it. Guests who are keen to

still cannot believe I have Apollo in my arms

make a positive difference while they’re

and this is what my family now looks like

on holiday in the Maldives is a trend we

this Christmas.” She added: “This little boy

encourage at Outrigger.”

is the most amazing gift we’ve been blessed with. I wish you love at this time. I hope

Apart from beach cleanups and excursions

wherever you are, whoever you’re with, that

with its marine biologist, Outrigger Konotta

you have peace in your life. Merry Xmas

Maldives Resort operates according to

from our little tribe. X.”

robust recycling, reducing and reusing environmental philosophy, which is part

While there, Klass and her family got

of Outrigger’s global OZONE (Outrigger’s

hands-on to help the environment. They

zone) marine conservation initiative.

PULLMAN MALDIVES AND MERCURE MALDIVES HOSTS MS. HEARTIST 2019, PAGEANT FOR A CAUSE

Pullman Maldives Maamutaa Resort and

Ms. Heartist 2019 consisted of 7 ladies from

donations. Our team was able to share

mental, emotional and social growth as

Mercure Maldives Kooddoo Resort has

Pullman and 2 from Mercure. The 9 kind-

the things that the center requested, such

young citizens. It will affect us as well.”

organized Ms. Heartist 2019, Pageant for a

hearted, beautiful and gorgeous ladies from

as beds and mattresses, TV’s, washing

Cause.

the islands of Pullman Maldives Maamutaa

machines and cash donations and more

The Ministry of Gender and Family officially

and Mercure Maldives Kooddoo Resort

importantly, the time spent and the

established Kudakudhunge Hiya’ on May

Ms. Heartist 2019, Pageant for a Cause

stood up as the Charity Ambassadors for

interactions during the visit was truly

2006, the only local orphanage in Villingili

was held on 10th December 2019. The

Children’s Home Orphanage in Villi-Male’.

memorable and heart warming.”

Island of Maldives, with the aim of providing

talent and culture team and Ms. Heartist

a safe and secure environment for orphans

candidates sold raffle tickets worth of USD

The talent and culture team released a

They further added, “We believe that the

and vulnerable children deprived from

6,630. The funds received from the sale of

statement saying, “All the funds raised,

children are the most vulnerable members

other means of primary care.

tickets was used to support the Children’s

USD 6,630 was donated to the children’s

of our society and if we deprive them from

Home.

orphanage

their basic needs, it will affect their physical,

through

in-kind

and

cash


ACCOMMODATION 35

HARD ROCK CAFÉ MALDIVES CONDUCTS WORKSHOP IN COLLABORATION WITH MUSICIAN LUCA STRICAGNOLI An open workshop for locals and other

interested in a jam session, a guitar, bass,

hotel guests was held on 4th January 2020

drums, and keys were also set up on stage.

at 4 PM, at Hard Rock Café Maldives. The workshop was held together with one of the

This event is the first of many initiatives

top acoustic guitarists in the world, Luca

in support of the local music community.

Stricagnoli.

As there are currently no proper music schools, and most local musicians are self-

People from different areas were invited

made, Hard Rock Café Maldives wanted to

to witness his talent. He is known for

provide an opportunity for these musicians

his unique style and innovative playing

and music lovers to come together and

techniques which he demonstrated during

experience the love of music and build

the workshop. Furthermore, he explained

relationships through that common ground.

the process and development behind this

As Hard Rock Café Maldives has been

signature style of playing. Luca brings

fortunate enough to be able to work with

With venues in 76 countries spanning 262

pieces

an enthusiastic energy to the stage that

many local bands, and hope to continue

locations that include owned/licensed or

the globe. Hard Rock destinations are

attracts concert requests from around the

to do so, they wanted to create a link

managed hotels, casinos, rock shops, and

located in the world’s greatest international

world, and his music has been featured in

between local musicians and internationally

cafés, Hard Rock International (HRI) is one

gateway cities including two of its most

countless magazines and TV channels, and

renowned musicians. Luca is a perfect

of the most globally recognized companies.

successful flagship properties in Florida

has grabbed the attention of world-famous

example, and the café hopes they can

Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, they

and home to the world’s first Guitar Hotel

artists such as “Red Hot Chili Peppers”

enforce this passion and creativity through

own the world’s most valuable collection

in South Florida.

and “Walk Off The Earth.” For musicians

such a workshop.

of music memorabilia at more than 83,000

displayed

at

locations

GERMAN RADIO STATION 104.6 RTL BERLINS HITRADIO GOES LIVE FROM HERITANCE AARAH Arno und die Morgencrew (English: Arno

as well as Newcomers. The radio station is

and the Morning Crew), the morning show

famous for the nationally biggest raffles,

of the Berlin’s Hitradio 104.6 RTL radio

spectacular promotions and most famous

station is now going live from Heritance

comedy shows of the city.

Aarah. The show will go live every morning from the resort from 13th to 31st January

Accessible by a scenic 40-minute seaplane

2020.

flight from the main Velana International Airport, Heritance Aarah is a premium all-

The show is also giving away a dream trip

inclusive all-villa resort consisting of 150

to the destination worth over 15,000 euros

villas including 26 intimate luxury duplex

every day. Arno and the Morning Crew is a

ocean suites, 56 sunset ocean villas and 68

show broadcasted weekdays from 5:00am

land villas ranging from beach villas to pool

– 10:00am in the morning. Each Saturday,

beach villas, family beach villas and family

a summary of the week follows in a “best-

pool beach villas. Be it a romantic interlude

of” show from 8:00am – 10:00am in the

or a family retreat, Heritance Aarah offers

morning. 104.6 Radio RTL is the Berliner

curated experiences that cater to the

Hitradio with the best music from the charts

discerning traveler with diverse interests.

around


36 ACCOMMODATION

FOUR GOLF COURSES IN MALDIVES MC’S COACH GUARDIOLA CAN ENJOY GOLFING Pep Guardiola was recently asked whether

sqm course (21,000 sq. ft.) located in the

he would ever take charge of Manchester

center of the island. The pitch houses 9 tee

City’s fierce rivals Manchester United and

boxes and 6 greens which allow you to play

he responded saying: “After training City

18 holes while working on your short game.

I will never train them; I would not train

Each green features 4 or more flag positions

[Real] Madrid [after Barcelona]. I’d be in the

of increasing levels of difficulty.

Maldives if I don’t have any offers. Maybe not the Maldives because it doesn’t have any golf courses.”

3. Kuredu Golf Club - Kuredu Island Resort Located on the eastern portion of the

Guess what? Maldives goes beyond the

island, surrounded by natural forest and

sunkissed beaches and sea adventures! To

the noise of the ocean, playing golf could

help Guardiola, we bring you 4 world-class

not be any more peaceful than it is here.

golf courses to enjoy a golfing holiday in the

Kuredu’s Golf Club boasts a full-size driving

Maldives.

range and a large putting green to perfect the short game. The course is a 6-hole

1. Velaa Golf Academy - Velaa Private Island

Par 3 course with the average length of a

Velaa Golf Academy prides itself on tailoring

followed by drinks at the Golf Bar.

hole being 55 yards. Our pick: Night golf,

golf lessons to the individual, focusing on the

4. Villingili Golf Course - Shangriby Jose Maria Olazabal, renowned for his La’s Villingili Resort & Spa, short game prowess, with nine different Maldives areas required for improvement. Designed

tees, six greens, seven bunkers, and a lake,

A once in a lifetime golfing experience

Velaa Golf Academy provides a golfing

awaits at Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort & Spa

experience like no other, designed to create

- the only resort in the Maldives to boast a

bespoke memories whatever your wishes.

nine-hole golf course, elegantly designed to showcase the island’s outstanding natural

DISCOVER A TRULY ALLINCLUSIVE RESORT IN THE MALDIVES Located in Gaafu Alifu Atoll, only 1 hour

Because at Pullman Maldives we believe in

travel from Male, among 19 hectares of

innovation, be prepare to have an intimate

lush vegetation and a natural lake, Pullman

encounter with marine life like never before

Maldives Maamutaa

in our 2 exclusive Aqua Villas, where you

is more than just

another Resort.

could have an immersive experience in the underwater bedrooms. Get ready to write

With a truly all-inclusive concept, featuring

your Pullman story. For more information:

6 dining options, a unique wellness and

Website: pullmanmaldivesmaamutaa.com

fitness approach combined with a pop up

Phone: +960 6820909

resident artist and Chef.

2. The Meeru Golf Club - Meeru Island Resort

beauty. Undeniably dubbed as the world’s

Play 9 holes over 480 yards on this 2000

promises a perfect round, every time.

most exotic course, this idyllic setting


TRAININGS 37

ACE AVIATION SERVICES MALDIVES AND ACE TRAVELS MALDIVES CONCLUDES CUSTOMER SERVICE TRAINING PROGRAMS Ace Aviation Services Maldives, the General

“We also look forward continuing these

Sales Agent for Sri Lankan Airlines in the

training for staff every month with the

Maldives along with its sister company Ace

intention to maximize the best customer

Travels Maldives has concluded a 2-day

service experiences we could offer our

customer service training on 3-4 January

clientele” he further added.

2020. Ace Travels Maldives, is a leading Travel The program was conducted to help

Company in The Maldives. Since its

employees explore how to integrate the

inception in 2002, Ace Travels Maldives

company’s mission, vision and customer

has played an important role in catering to

service delivery, and create the necessary

the travel needs supporting the expanding

alignment between all essential players to

Tourism in the Maldives. Ace Travels

achieve enhanced results. These include

Maldives and Ace Aviation Services is a

better customer experiences, improved

Joint Venture between Inner Maldives

customer satisfaction, and a more positive

Holidays and Aitken Spence Travels, Sri

image of both the companies.

Lanka.

Around 65 employees participated in

Ace Aviation Services Maldives is the

the 2-day training program conducted in

General Sales Agent for SriLankan Airlines

conjunction with HR Maldives.

in Maldives. The airline operates daily flights to Colombo with smooth connections to

“Our new year resolution is to enhance

over 53 destinations worldwide, providing

better customer service and bring excellent

passenger and Cargo services.

customer retention experiences, and in order to make this happen, we conducted

The company also bagged 2019 South

this advance customer service program

Asia Travel Awards (SATA) for the Leading

with the beginning of the new year.” said

Airline GSA award in the Maldives, and for

Roshan Madurawala, Country Manager for

the third consecutive year.

Ace Aviation Services Maldives and Ace Travels Maldives.

At our resorts in Maldives, you can embark on adventure, both under and above water, cosy up in a romantic embrace, discover local culture, savour delectable cuisine or relax by the sea. Welcome to an escape of absolute bliss.

F

6th Floor, H. Thuniya, Boduthakurufaanu Magu, Male’ 20026, Republic of Maldives T: +96 06 640 375-7 E : res.central@adaaran.com.mv www.adaaran.com


38 TRAVEL AGENTS

VOYAGES MALDIVES CELEBRATES REMARKABLE 40 YEARS IN THE TOURISM INDUSTRY Voyages Maldives turns 40 this year, a major

and travel solutions to and from anywhere

milestone for remarkable contribution

in the world. The group also owns an

by the company to the Maldivian tourism

exclusive holiday resort in Ari Atoll,

industry.

Diamonds Athuruga, managed by a Swiss firm.

Established in 1980, Voyages Maldives has, over the years, expanded to cover a number

Voyages Maldives has a long standing

of key tourist services in one of the most

relationship with their partners from all

beautiful holiday destinations in the world.

across the globe spanning over 40 years in the industry. They have also enjoyed

Specializing in ‘Dhoni’ Safari programs,

immense recognition by being awarded for

which include cruising, diving and surfing

their services at prestigious functions such

safaris, Voyages Maldives also provides

as the South Asian Travel Awards, MATATO

ground handling services to tour operators,

Travel Awards and Maldives Boating Awards

supervision and representation for airlines

throughout the years.

YOUNGISTAN TRAVELLERS HOST NETWORKING EVENT FOR MALDIVIAN COUNTERPARTS IN INDIA Youngistan Travellers, one of the leading

tour operators, travel agents and airlines

Indian tour operators to Maldives has

attended the event. This event was held

hosted a networking event for Maldivian

to network and appreciate the all the

counterparts. The event was held in New

stakeholders who are tirelessly working to

Delhi, India on 9th January 2019.

promote and market Maldives in India. Youngistan Travellers is a New Delhi-based

More than 150 partners, including sales

Tour operator. Maldives is one of their

and marketing managers from resorts,

leading destination.


TRAVEL AGENTS 39

ATP CONGRATULATES MMPRC AND MOT FOR ACHIEVING 1.67 MILLION TOURISTS TO THE MALDIVES Maldives

Association

for

Tourism

tourists 38 days ahead of time and total

Professionals (ATP) congratulates Maldives

tourist arrivals reaching 1.67 million by the

Marketing and Public Relations Corporation

end of the year.

(MMPRC) and the Ministry of Tourism for their hard work and dedication to achieve a

ATP released a statement saying, “In this

milestone arrival of 1.67 million tourists to

remarkable moment, all the members

the Maldives.

of the ATP and its board members would like to thank Minister of Tourism,

MMPRC, along with the Tourism Ministry

Hon. Ali Waheed, Managing Director of

has conducted multiple activities to promote

MMPRC, Mr.Thoyyib Mohamed and all the

the Maldives as a tourism destination. In

employees of those two institutions for their

2019, more than 130 events including fairs,

hard work and dedication to achieve this

roadshows, media FAM trips, and joint

milestone. ATP assures that it will remain

campaigns were conducted by MMPRC

supporting all the stakeholders of the

to facilitate in achieving this target. With

Maldives Tourism Industry to promote and

the result of these activities, Maldives has

develop the tourism industry of Maldives.”

achieved milestone arrival of 1.5 million

CAPITAL TRAVEL AND TOURS AWARDED THE TOP PRODUCER FOR 2019 BY JUMEIRAH VITTAVELI Capital Travel and Tours has been awarded

comprises of 25 dedicated staff members.

the Top Producer of 2019 by Jumeirah

Upon receiving the award Yoosuf Riffath

Vittaveli, a subsidiary of the renowned

said, “It gives us tremendous honor to be

Emirati International Luxury Hotel chain –

acknowledged as the Top Producer of 2019.

Jumeirah Hotels and Resorts. This award is a testament to the dedication

most exclusive and unbeatable offers in the

Jumeirah Vittaveli. Whether for an intimate

market.

escape or an indulgent family retreat,

Ever since Jumeirah Vittaveli opened its

of our team. Thank you Jumeirah Vittaveli

gates in South Male’ Atoll, Capital Travel

for recognizing our efforts towards your

Nestled in a spot of astounding beauty and

diversity, subtle luxury and personalized

and Tours have been actively working with

property. We look forward to many more

ideal for couples, families or small groups,

exploration.

the resort setting benchmarks, the latest

years of success.” Jumeirah Vittaveli is

Jumeirah Vittaveli brings personalized

seamless service shape the character of

bagging the Top Producer of the year 2019.

highly popular among the partners and

excitement to the holiday. The Resort is

this resort paradise, where every detail

The award was received by the CEO of

clientele of Capital Travel and Tours as a

located at South Male Atoll, Bolifushi.

has been meticulously crafted to inspire

Capital Travel and Tours – Mr. Yoosuf

result of the strong decade long partnership

A 20-minute ride on-board a luxurious

journeys of discovery and enjoyment.

Riffath and was celebrated by the whole

shared by both the companies which in turn

motorized

team of Capital Travel and Tours which

entitle Capital Travel and Tours with the

International Airport brings guests to

HRS_19-707_TTM_AD_02_PATHED.pdf

1

15/4/19

14:58

Jumeirah

catamaran

from

Velana

Vittaveli

offers

Impeccable

unmatched choice

and


40 CELEBRITY NEWS

Who: Melissa Benoist and Chris Wood

Who: Eros Ramazzotti

Who: Mel B

Where: Maldives

Where: Heritance Aarah

Where: Maldives

When: January

When: January

When: January

Who: Drogba

Who: Fernando Torrest

Who: Patrick Kluivert

Where: Maldives

Where: Maldives

Where: Maldives

When: January

When: January

When: January

Who: Sara Ali Khan, Ibrahim Ali Khan, and Amrita Singh

Where: LUX* North Male Atoll

When: January

Who: Rafael da Silva and Fábio da Silva

Where: Maldives

When: January

Who: Mick McCarthy

Who: Roberto Mancini

Who: Tara Sutaria

Who: Hina Khan

Where: Kuredu Island Resort

Where: Emerald Maldives Resort & Spa

Where: Heritance Aarah

Where: Kurumba Maldives

When: January

When: January

When: January

When: December


CELEBRITY NEWS

Who: Madonna, her children, and

boyfriend Ahlamalik Williams •

Where: Vakkaru Maldives

When: January

Who: Idris Elba and wife Sabrina

Who: Taylor Swift

Dhowre Elba

Where: Soneva Jani

Where: One & Only Reethi Rah

When: January

Maldives •

When: January

Who: Gordon Ramsay and family

Who: Karishma Tanna and Pearl V Puri

Who: Kajal Aggarwal

Where: Amilla Fushi

Where: Furaveri Maldives

Where: Reethi Faru Resort

When: December

When: December

When: December

41

Who: Bipasha Basu and husband Karan Singh Grover

Where: Maldives

When: January

Who: Zara McDermott and Sam Thompson

Where: Ayada Maldives

When: December

Who: Nushrat Bharucha

Who: David Ginola

Who: Liv Tyler

Who: Matt Dillon

Where: The Sun Siyam Iru Fushi

Where: Maldives

Where: Maldives

Where: Raffles Maldives Meradhoo

Maldives

When: January

When: January

When: December

Resort •

When: January


42 TTM HIGHLIGHTS

TTM HIGHLIGHTS OF 2019


TTM HIGHLIGHTS 43


L E A D I N G T R AV E L T R A D E B U S I N E SS R E S O U R C E OF MALDIVES

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