While Seaside Finolhu resort offers all the expected luxuries of a Maldivian holiday, its Beach Bubble Tent is a unique way to immerse yourself in the island way of life. By Shrimayee Thakur
With white sand beaches, surrounded by azure waters and fringed by swaying palms, Baa Atoll showcases the best of what the Maldives has to offer. The UNESCO protected site supports one of the largest groups of coral reefs in the Indian Ocean. This natural haven is now home to the luxurious Seaside Finolhu resort, with 125 private villas that offer a unique way for visitors to take in the beauty of the archipelago.
Built in 2016, the award-winning Finolhu resort was taken over by the Seaside Hotels group, making it the first resort in the Maldives under German management. The resort stretches across four islands, and its network of beaches covers around 2.5 kilometres, making it ideal for long walks along the shore. Finolhu has been inspired by shades of blue in the ocean, tropical greens, sunset reds, and sandy whites, and describes itself as a
kaleidoscope of possibilities. As a conscious measure, an on-site marine biologist ensures that the surroundings are not adversely affected by tourism.
You can unwind in the serene lagoon, which is shallow enough for children to play in. The lagoon is sheltered from the ocean and is therefore ideal for watersports like kite surfing, jet-skiing, stand-up paddleboarding, wind surfing, and catamaran sailing. Visitors can also acquire snorkelling gear and explore the house reef, which separates the lagoon from the deeper water beyond it.
The 125 villas are either located on the beach or on stilts above the lagoon, and some of them have private pools to lounge in. Each villa offers a gorgeous view—from Beach Villas and Water Pool Villas, to the Rockstar Villa that has direct ocean access and a private wine
cellar. The Water Pool Villas come with a sun deck, an eight-metre-long pool, and direct access to the lagoon. The Lagoon Villas and Ocean Pool Villas are perfect for families or couples, while the two-bedroom Water Villa and Rockstar Villa can accommodate larger groups. The Beach Villas, on the other hand, offer direct access to the pristine beach. The Beach Villa, Private Pool Villa, and two-bedroom Beach Villa with pool all come with
an outdoor patio, where visitors can sunbathe in the day and stargaze at night.
Kickstarting the glamping trend in the Maldives, the resort offers a unique, one-night-only stay in a transparent bubble at a secluded beach. The Finolhu Beach Bubble Tent is the first of its kind on the archipelago, and perfect for couples looking to spend time together, away from all distractions. The Bubble has been designed by leading Spanish design firm Eye In The Sky. Made of strong hightech polyester fabric, the Bubble is UV-protected and fully
climate controlled. With bespoke furniture, custom-fitted wooden floors, and an adjoining bubble bathroom, the interiors are lavish and comfortable.
Both its location—on a secluded sandback—and the transparency of the bubble provide a fantastic setting for an incredibly romantic starry night. The Finolhu Bubble promises to bring couples closer to the stars, the beach, the environment, and each other. A traditional Maldivian dhoni brings visitors to the Bubble, and after a private barbeque dinner and the soothing sound of the waves to lull them to sleep, visitors awaken to a breakfast served
on the beach.
The Bubble is only around 100 metres away from Crab Shack, a ramshackle wooden structure with a charming old-world beach vibe. The restaurant offers lunch from 12.30 pm to 3.30 pm, where diners can enjoy the best of seafood or snacks and white wine. The
bar at the Shack is open from 12.30 pm to 5 pm. Once a week, the Crab Shack also opens for dinner.
Seaside Finolhu has something to satisfy every kind of food craving. The tables at Baa Baa Beach Diner have a spectacular view. Regional specialities take centre stage here on special evenings, with Italian, Asian, French, and Vietnamese cuisines on offer. Kanusan is
only accessible via a boardwalk, and focusses on Asian cuisine, served up by a resident Japanese chef. BaaHaa Grill is located in the heart of the island’s lush greenery, and serves delicious North American food, with some tajine or the best hummus outside Tunisia and Morocco.
Ten treatment rooms in the award-winning Finolhu Spa provide a variety of treatments, from classic Swedish massages to traditional Thai massages, or a signature Sun Cooler to rejuvenate the skin after sun exposure. Guests can maintain their fi tness regimes at the fully equipped indoor and outdoor gym areas, with the help of a personal trainer. Movement Pavillion is ideal for meditation and yoga, while tennis lovers can enjoy a game in the midst of tropical greenery and even take lessons with a personal tennis coach.
Seaside Finolhu resort offers a truly magical getaway, nestled in nature’s lap and surrounded by the clear blue waters of the Indian Ocean.