Who needs shoes anyway? Barefoot luxury meets sustainability at the Six Senses Laamu in the Maldives.
Where is it? Set deep in the Indian Ocean and being the only resort in the Laamu Atoll, the Six Senses is reached via a 35 minute domestic flight from Malé followed by a 15-minute speedboat transfer.
Which room? A combination of on-land and over-water villas with either ocean or lagoon views will not disappoint. Guests can choose single or multiple room villas with unique features including upper or lower decks, viewing platforms and private pools.
But perhaps the most impressive feature is the sunken glass baths which perch over the crystal blue waters so guests can spot marine life swim underneath while enjoying a relaxing soak. In keeping with the resort’s eco-friendly ethos, all villas are constructed of sustainable materials.
On the menu: The resort has six bars and restaurants, most of which are set over water. Ingredients are sourced from local fishermen and farmers so fresh local produce is guaranteed wherever you dine.
What to do? Wildlife is in abundance here with reef sharks, manta rays, colourful fish and amazing birds inhabiting the surrounding environment and the spectacular location means guests are treated to the incredible sight of dolphins swimming along the shoreline from the comfort of the resort. Get up close and personal by snorkelling or, better still, diving. The experienced dive team organise early morning and night dives so guests can witness the changes in the sea life at different times of day or night (when some species sleep others come out to hunt). For those enjoying longer stays it’s worth taking a full day excursion to see what’s happening in the underwater world further afield.
Feeling adventurous? The Ying Yang (possibly the Maldives’ most famous wave) breaks just offshore making this a surfers’ paradise, or try water skiing, wake boarding, windsurfing or catamaran sailing. For some on-land entertainment take a private picnic on a remote island, enjoy a barbeque dinner on the sandbank or take an excursion to some of the local islands. Or if you would rather relax do so by watching a film in the jungle cinema – sure to be one of the most unexpected and unique settings for a film screening you’ll ever come across.
What about the spa? Six Senses resorts are renowned for their spas and the Spa at Six Senses Laamu will not disappoint. World-class treatments are enjoyed in rooms or pavilions which are set amongst the natural vegetation with the backdrop of sea views. The facials and massages are everything you would expect from a luxury resort but for those looking to achieve wellness on a deeper level there is much more on offer. Take a wellness screening to create a personalised wellness programme which can run from three to 14 days or book a consultation with an expert in alternative medicine (calendars of visiting practitioners are available online).
Anything else I should know? The Six Senses places great importance on sustainability and operates with the core value of ‘Global Sensitivity, Local Sensibility’. The group aims to care for local communities and ecosystems and is committed to reducing the environmental impact and carbon footprint from activities associated with running its resorts. Six Senses Laamu promotes education and awareness of the marine environment, is active in coral reef protection and aims to protect the local sea turtle population. Guests can take a fascinating back-of-house tour to learn more about the resort’s eco-efforts and get a sneak peak into the realities of running a luxury resort on such a remote island.
Best for: Couples and individuals looking for remote luxury, top notch food and unique extras while maintaining an environmental conscience.
When to go: The tropical climate means there is a dry season (December-April) and a wet season (May-November) but temperatures are consistently between 26 C – 32 C and conditions allow for year round diving.
How do I book? Visit sixsenses.com.