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The stylish Taj Exotica is situated on an exclusive private island and is encircled by one of the Maldives' largest clear lagoons. This award-winning resort blends seamlessly into the island's natural beauty with traditional Maldivian palm-thatched villas. The resort boasts the Jiva Grande Spa, the first authentic Indian spa outside of India, which offers Ayurveda therapies and a unique Indian bathing pavilion. There is a wealth of water sports and dining experiences available. Dress up for dinner in the exotic 24 Degrees restaurant or enjoy a moonlit Champagne cruise.
In South Malé Atoll on the private island of Emboodhu Finolhu. Transfer time from Malé airport: 15-20 min by speedboat.
64 rooms in total, including 20 Lagoon Villas, 31 Deluxe Lagoon Villas with pool, 4 Deluxe Beach Villas with pools, 3 Premium Beach Villas with pool, 2 Ocean Suites, 1 1-Bedroom Beach Suite with pool and 2 Two-Bedroom Beach Suites with pool. All villas are spacious and have a terrace with sun loungers, air-conditioning, widescreen satellite TV, DVD/CD, Internet connection, tea/coffee-making facilities, mini-bar, safe and hairdryer. Lagoon Villas are perched on stilts, with direct access to the lagoon below and are located on the eastern side of the island, sleeping max 2 adults.
Deluxe Lagoon Villas with pool have identical facilities to the above, are located further out in the lagoon and have a plunge pool on the sundeck, sleeping max 3 adults or 2 adults and 1 child. Deluxe Beach Villas are large and luxurious and close to the lagoon with an oversized plunge pool and a tropical outdoor shower, sleeping max 3 adults or 2 adults and 1 child. Premium Beach Villas have their own stretch of beach and direct access to the lagoon with an oversized plunge pool and tropical outdoor shower with an infinite view of the lagoon, sleeping max 3 adults or 2 adults and 1 child. 1-Bedroom Ocean Suite are built over water and have a living room, bedroom with attached bedroom, glassed bathroom, a large freshwater pool with private sundeck, sleeping max 3 adults or 2 adults and 1 child. 1- Bedroom Beach Villa Suite with pool set on the beach, with separate living room, tropical outdoor shower and oversized plunge pool, have a king-size bed, sleeping max 3 adults or 2 adults and 1 child. 2-Bedroom Beach Villa Suite with pool are set on the beach, with separate living room, tropical outdoor shower and oversized plunge pool, each bedroom with a king-size bed, sleeping max 4 adults. Rehendi Presidential Suite with 18m fresh water pool, in-room butler service, has 1 king-size bed in the master bedroom and 2 queen-size beds in the second bedroom, sleeping max 4 adults.
3 Restaurants: 24 Degrees, The Deep End and The Pool Side. In-villa dining available. Bar with walk-in cellar. Swimming pool with poolside snack bar. Jiva Grande Spa offering a range of signature treatments. Billiards. Indoor games. Water sports including catamaran sailing, water-skiing, sea kayaking and windsurfing. Dive centre. Library with free Internet access and boutique shop.
10 nights: 24 Dec '14-08 Jan '15
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TripAdvisor Traveller Rating:
Well where can I begin is a hard decision, can just go from start to finish. Went there with my wife for our anniversary on 27th November, and stayed there for 4 nights. There was something special... Read more right from the time we stepped on to the transfer boat till we checked out and back to the airport. There was attention given to every small detail, for e.g. even the refreshing paper towels were from bvlgari and had its unique fragrance. Anyways check in was super fast and all details were given to us by our butler Ayath, who gave us a tour of the hotel before we entered our room. The lagoon villas are amazing, spacious, but the decks had a little old/faded mattresses which could be ignored considering being kept outside permanently. We were greeted with a champagne at the reception, along with another bottle in our room and one of the best chocolate cakes I have eaten. Minibar was quite expensive, and the aux cable in the music system was defective with only one set of speakers working. We were put in villa 421, with a fantastic view of the lagoon, also spotted a lot of sting rays while snorkelling this side. The first day was spent just relaxing and exploring the property, which isn't all that big. We booked ourselves for the photoshoot the next morning, (which is slightly cheaper compared to other hotels such as Vellasuru). Meals were eaten at 24 degrees, we were mostly greeted by Cindy, I cant recommend any particular kind of food as everything was up to perfection and we were never disappointed, special thanks to chef Shiroy (had the chance to go diving with him). The best thing about Taj was they get very very personal, and make sure you are wanted as a guest. Evenings were spent on the beach, with sting ray feeding and shark feeding. The private dining options are VERY expensive compared to other hotels, which offer it at under 300$. The starting price of the Taj private dining was 480 I believe. Personally we preferred the food and ambience at 24 degrees vs Deepend. I believe they can do more with deep end (we ordered a degustation menu at deep end - beware of the portions - they are quite big so think twice before ordering anything else along with it). The sides - pasta and risotto are probably the best I have eaten. Equator bar has some good kebabs and a unique sangria that we really enjoyed - along with some hukka. We ate by the poolside on the last day - perfect pizza was served. Also Samil gave us a dessert which said "we will miss you" on our last night. Thats where Taj is different from the others because none of our friends staying at other hotels enjoyed this personal touch. I have stayed at hotels all over the world, but this being one of the most expensive spends, i still think it was the most worthwhile. My wife actually cried on the last day because she couldn't believe such a beautiful country existed in this world. For those who want to dive, i found the sites pretty OK, the sites on the west side of Maldives (near W) are a lot better with some huge whale sharks. For the spa the Indian aromatherapy massage was amazing and the tea they serve is even better. Well apart from all the amazing things I have shared, with pros there are cons too: 1. Paying 1200$/night, the rooms werent equipped with the latest hardware. The features in the room seemed to be the same as any 5 star built around 10 years ago. In particular i didn't appreciate the curtains that din't completely darken the room, as I am used to sleeping in a completely dark room. The sea plane noise coming from planes passing above can get annoying sometimes, specially during a lazy calm silent afternoon. 2. In today's time internet really doesnt cost anything, most hotels I checked up were offering it complimentary but Taj was charging USD 24 for the day. 3. Basic water (same as that served free in the room and the beach) is charged at USD 5 at the restaurants, which i find quite funny as that can't really make the F&B profitable. The best of all - Raw onion slices, when ordered at Equator bar along with Kebabs (though it came when the Kebabs were almost over) - came for free. When we ordered Chicken Tikka the next day at 24 degrees - it came without any onion (dear chef - if you happen to eat kebabs in a restaurant anywhere in india whether it is peshawari at sheraton or a dhaaba roadside - onion and mint chutney come along without saying). So well when we ordered onion, we were told it costs 8$ + tax (come on you cant be serious that the rise in onion prices is responsible for this). The minibar also seemed like a rip off. 9$ for an orange juice... phew. 4. Well some guest from Lebanon who was diving with me was not really happy because he used the emergency jacket for his wife for snorkelling - because it wasnt told to him that it is supposed to be used only in cases of emergency. Later he complained his butler said it costs 200$, and he should have read the instructions - well i think going to a resort in the middle of the sea is reason enough some guest would think the jacket is for snorkelling, and if the butler didn't tell him, its not his fault - he shouldnt be asked to pay - that too 200$. I would go with the fact that it was the butlers fault. But nothing is perfect and overall, the experience was almost perfect. Special thanks to Mr Subramanium, Harsh, our butler Ayath, our photographer (had a wonderful photoshoot), Samil and Niju (samil was the most warm server I have met really), Bala, Siddharth (he really hunted the entire island when i complained my watch was missing), Cindy, Robin Noah and Faris (for my dives) and everyone who made our stay memorable and wonderful. Have recommended this hotel to all near and dear ones, don't miss it for the world. Read less
I had to write this review cause after reading about many hotels i decided to visit the taj exotica. The island is small and you can walk the island in flat 10 mins. The Good: Excellent... Read more service Very efficient housekeeping Special mention for Raj who served us at the main restaurant. Clear water Artificial reef is laid and should be exciting for the first timers but for serious reef seekers this is not the place. Plenty of drinking water available for free except in the restaurants. They keep good track of your pleasure. A lot of Indian staff yet they had a mix for other tourists also. The free snorkeling equipment is in excellent condition and is readily available Nice food. Options are available for Vegetarians (not much but still) The music played live was good and enjoyable The bad: We had the butler service and our butler was Mousim, who was never to be found Any details which we wanted to know we had to make efforts to call him as he was always "attending other guests" The tours and other activities are expensive The free stuff like the non motor sports equipment is available but nobody is their to guide you on how to use it and if you want help it is paid. We had some additions to our package and in order to get them we had to strive as the management did not voluntarily disclose that to us ( though they had the itinerary) They will push you for the private dinner which is trust me very expensive. You can get the same feel in the main restaurant. In short: great for a single and first time visit. Go for the lagoon villas if gong as a couple. The villa with pool is on the tarmac and it is in the opposite end of the main restaurant. Privacy over the lagoon villa is difficult as the villa is a single hut divided in 2 rooms. Read less
This hotel didn't have the level of service I expected from a 5 star hotel in the Maldives which was rated number one in Asia in Travel and Leisure. It's no different from any typical 5 star hotel... Read more in the States. We had a "personal butler" for our 5 day stay but we only spoke with him 2x during our stay. I didn't see the point of appointing this person since we just called the front desk every time we needed something, all he did was check us in. Some workers will cross your path and not acknowledge you, one even cut us off w/ a golf cart and didn't think anything of it. There were a couple of outstanding employees but some just seemed a little indifferent. Hammahd and Dombe stood out because you can tell they really love what they do. We also did a 9pm seating with the chef for Thai food and he was friendly and his food was amazing, was definitely a great experience. Some people at reception were very friendly and always remembered our names which was nice. Parts of the hotel's structure were falling apart, pieces of wood from the siding were floating in front of our villa along w/ a toilet seat that fell off of a rubbish boat to Rubbish Island. The roof on our villa also looked like it was coming off. After a few days, we'd notice garbage and debris floating around the beach area by the pool. It struck us that the waiters and groundskeepers would ignore the garbage even though it's in plain sight - really very surprising. One day I noticed a water bottle floating on the beach by the edge of the pool and after 3 hours, it was still there. Also, most 5 star resorts offer some complimentary items from the mini bar, like some beer and soda but this hotel nickel and dimes for everything. $9 for Tiger beer is unheard of. I understand that they have to ship everything to the island but this beer is 25 cents at any corner market in Thailand. Just because a hotel is 5 star, it doesn't mean they can gouge their clients b/c there's nowhere else to go for food since it's an island. We're very surprised that this hotel is number one Asia and the Maldives, maybe our expectations were just too high. We stayed at Rayavadee in Krabi, Thailand just before our trip to the Maldives and we felt like royalty. It was a true 5 star experience in every sense. We loved the Maldives and agree that it is paradise on earth, it's on par with Bora Bora, but all in all, we would not stay at Taj Exotica again. Read less
We have recently returned from our 6th stay at the Taj and it just gets better! The island has become our second home. Many of the staff have been there a while which gives a lovely feeling of... Read more consistancy for returning guests. Indeed several of the staff are like old friends now. The service and food are outstanding...we know we will not be disappointed and this is what brings us back each time. Naturally, having been here several times I wouldn't have expected there to be anything that could surprise me, however, our lovely butler Shamix arranged a surprise dinner for us on the pavilion that stands in the middle of the lagoon and is reached by a small speedboat. I can honestly say it was the best surprise I have ever had and one of the best experiences of my life. It was surreal being left in the middle of the ocean listening to the waves lapping around. Each course was delivered by boat and was absolutely delicious. I will never forget such a fabulous evening as long as I live! As if that wasn't enough, two days later when we arrived for breakfast we were shown to the wedding pavilion where Shamix had set up a private breakfast for us as a surprise. Again, this was wonderful. I think it is the attention to detail and the willingness of the staff to go out of their way to make you feel special that makes this such an amazing place to stay. Shamel and his team at The Deep End, Cindy and her team at 24 degrees, Ahmad(the bed decoration was beatiful!) Ruby and especially Shamix, thank you all for another fabulous holiday and we hope to see you next year. Read less
We had a truly lovely stay over ten days and that is really down to one thing, the resort's attention to detail. We visited on the recommendation by friends and were not disappointed. We had thought... Read more that this would probably be a one off visit as we have other favourite places in the world. That is no longer the case it's now more a matter of when we return than if we return!! The attention to detail is so quietly executed but keeps the resort special. For example the grounds staff thorough maintenance of the paths and fallen leaves, water and fresh towels when you visit the pool in the late afternoon and staff trained always to give a cheery hello and to talk to guests with sincere interest in making everyone's stay special. We were helped at the beginning of our stay when I was bitten by insects. Lotion was given to me and the decking area of our room sprayed. Likewise ginger and lemon tea was supplied when my husband suffered from an annoying cough. Helping us keep our room for a late check out has also been a real bonus as we faced two flights overnight back to the UK. Nothing seems to be too much trouble and staff are well trained. This is particularly evident when talking through a menu. The waiters know and understand the flavours and help you make an informed choice for a quality dining experience. In the bar our order is remembered from the previous evening, knowing how we like to take our different drinks. We are particularly interested in nature and learnt much from attending the ray and shark feeding as well as staff helping me to find camera shy fruit bats! Likewise, reasonably new to snorkelling the dive centre did all they could to ensure a safe and enjoyable lagoon experience. Our room has always been well stocked and so beautifully clean. The staff recognised our routines quickly and were discrete in providing excellent service. In twenty two years of marriage we have never celebrated our anniversary in such style and with such romance. From the butler spotting our anniversary cards to all the little extras, it was a very special day. It is certainly the most memorable of anniversaries from treats in the room to a very special evening in the Deep End. The cyber butler was most helpful throughout our stay in ensuring all our electronic devices connected efficiently. We can't stop talking about the truly wonderful holiday we had at this very special resort. Read less