We review the top 10 best water villas in the Maldives. These include Soneva Fushi Resort, Jani, Gili Lankanfushi, Four Seasons Maldives at Kuda Huraa Resort, at Landaa Giraavaru, Private Island Voavah, St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort, Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa, One&Only Reethi Rah, Milaidhoo.
The Maldives is the perfect paradise for couples, newlyweds, and honeymooners, and even families who want to enjoy snorkeling, diving, Michelin-starred restaurants, star-filled skies, and stunning water villas.
The Maldives nation in the Indian Ocean is made up of 26 ring-shaped atolls with more than 1,000 stunning coral islands. Known for its powder-fine sandy beaches, turquoise lagoons, and amazing reefs with warm waters. Its resorts offer unrivaled luxury. Feel the hot white sand slip between your toes and float your way to your own private happiness in an azure blue sea.
But which of the top Maldives luxury resorts is best for you? We have picked our top 10 best luxury hotels with Water Villas in the Maldives below. Wherever you decide to stay, in the Maldives or elsewhere, book via our luxury travel concierge. We offer free upgrades, free breakfasts, and free benefits at hotels including the Four Seasons, Hyatt, Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, InterContinental, and more.
Typically, our free benefits at luxury hotels include:
- Room upgrade to next category
- Complimentary breakfast for two per bedroom
- Complimentary Welcome Gift
- $100 USD equivalent Hotel experiential credit per room per stay
- Early check-in / late check-out (subject to availability)
- Complimentary Wi-Fi
1. Soneva Jani
Soneva Jani is located on the island of Medhufaru in the northern Atoll of Noonu, 40-minutes by seaplane from Malé International Airport and 1 hour by speedboat from Soneva Fushi. Soneva Jani is an ultra-romantic resort that features 24 water villas and 1 island villa.
Inspired by a word that means ‘wisdom’ in Sanskrit, Soneva Jani encompasses a collection of Water Villas and Island Sanctuaries set within a lagoon of crystal clear waters, fringed by pristine beaches and blanketed in lush tropical greenery.
The resort offers barefoot luxury with 4 kilometers of sandy beach but with a modern eco-tourism angle. For example, the silent cinema allows you to listen to the movie on Bluetooth earphones not to disturb the local wildlife. There are 24 spacious water villas, each with its own private pool. Some villas even feature a huge water slide into the Indian Ocean!
There’s also a private island villa for an extra-exclusive stay, just perfect for honeymooners. The bedrooms have retractable roofs made from sustainable materials, so you can sleep under the stars in perfect comfort.
Just 24 water villas are connected to a wooden walkway that snakes its way across the lagoon and over to the main island. These water villas here are amazing. Most have their own slide down to the water along with a retractable roof so you can lie in bed watching the stars – I love this!
2. Soneva Fushi
Soneva Fushi is so good that apparently, 60% of guests return. Its Robinson Crusoe rooms are straight out of a fairytale.
Rooms at Soneva a Fushi all have their own patch of outdoors and uninterrupted views and range from one-bedroom to nine bedrooms. The latter, the largest one, has slides, a pool, a spa, and a gym! Currently, the best choice is the garden bathrooms with outdoor showers and sunken bathtubs. Sunsets are spectacular at Soneva Fushi, but villas on the sunrise side of the island are blessed with uninterrupted views of the ocean.
Right now, Soneva Fushi doesn’t have water villas, but these are coming soon. Following the creation of over-the-top amenities like the Observatory for high-tech stargazing, the open-air Cinema Paradiso, glass-blowing boutique, children’s Lego room, and nine destination dining concepts (there’s even an ice cream parlor).
Now, Soneva Fushi is adding its first-ever water villas, which were scheduled to open in April 2020. Sustainability is an important hospitality tenet for Soneva, and so the project followed a low-impact design, sourcing construction materials locally (like reclaimed driftwood).
There will be eight new Water Villas accessed via a curving jetty near Dolphin Beach on the main island. Designed in one- and two-bedroom configurations (6,300 square feet and 9,200 square feet, respectively), these Water Retreats are each equipped with an outdoor bathroom, private pool, and slide so you can swim directly in the Indian Ocean. Choose between sunrise or sunset views, which you can enjoy from an outdoor deck complete with a catamaran net over the water. These vistas are also framed by the floor-to-ceiling windows and have a retractable roof? No need to leave the comfort of your bed in order to go stargazing.
Soneva Jani is much smaller, incorporating just 24 overwater villas (villas are one to four-bedroom) connected to a wooden walkway that snakes its way across the lagoon and over to the main island. The rooms here are amazing. Most have their own slide down to the water along with a retractable roof so you can lie in bed watching the stars – I love this!
3. Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru
Four Seasons offers the most comprehensive resort experience in the Maldives with two distinctive Resorts, an exclusive-use private island, and a luxury live-aboard catamaran, offering leisurely cruising between their resorts so you can discover everything that the Maldives has to offer.
Wherever you are in the world, Four Seasons hotels are consistently one of the best hotels in that city or resort. They don’t have a Four Seasons loyalty program, so you will never be able to book a free stay by racking up and redeeming points or by collecting points on your credit card and spending them at a Four Seasons hotel. It can’t be done. But you can get discounts at Four Seasons hotels and benefit from special rewards at Four Seasons hotels for no extra cost by booking your next stay via our luxury travel concierge.
Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru is a 30-minute seaplane transfer from the main airport and offers a natural 44-acre wilderness in the secluded Baa Atoll. This is just the perfect place to snorkel with turtles, dolphins, and lemon sharks which all swim around in the two-kilometer lagoon.
They say: “Imagine white-sand beaches and turquoise waters punctuated with pops of green jungle stretching out as far as you can see – and that’s just the beginning. On Landaa Giraavaru, you can dive deep into the Indian Ocean to visit manta rays in their natural habitat, reset body and mind at our island Spa & Ayurvedic Retreat, lead your taste buds on an international journey from Morocco to Italy and back again, sip sundowners at our floating Seabar to the mingling sounds of ambient music and the rustling waves, or relax in your villa and do absolutely nothing at all.”
The hotel offers several overwater villas; Sunset Family Water Villa With Pool
with one king bed, one sofabed, one crib or rollaway, as well as your own private pool, all hanging over the water. The Sunrise Family Water Villa With Pool is similar, with a pool, one king ked, one sofabed, as well as one crib or rollaway. The Sunset Water Villa with pool has one king bed or two twin beds, one sofabed, as well as one crib or rollaway. The Sunrise Water Villa With Pool also has one king bed or two twin beds, one sofabed as well as one crib or rollaway. All these water villas are magical.
4. Four Seasons Maldives At Kuda Huraa Resort
Four Seasons Maldives At Kuda Huraa Resort is the second Four Seasons hotel in the Maldives and is a colorful garden ‘village’ bathed by crystal waters just 25 minutes from the airport by speedboat. This Four Seasons hotel is extremely convenient for those who do not fancy the drama of flying in a tiny seaplane or don’t want to spend a massive amount of money on transfers whilst still wanting to enjoy a ridiculously luxurious resort one of the best in the Maldives.
Engage in exhilarating activities from surfing to shark safaris, dolphin-watching to diving. Retreat to beach accommodations surrounded by tropical blooms or water bungalows with mesmerizing ocean views.
They say: “Gently rising from a sheet of turquoise, at Kuda Huraa, it’s hard to tell where the ocean ends and the sky begins. As captivating beneath the waves as above them, we embrace our stunning surroundings to bring you closer to the sea and its secrets.”
There are some wonderful water villas at Four Seasons Maldives At Kuda Huraa Resort. Dive from the bedroom of your water villa straight into the infinity pool. Lounge on overwater hammocks. Bathe in sunset blues at the water’s edge living and dining pavilion. Descend the steps directly into the warm crystal lagoon, dotted with reef fish and corals.
5. Four Seasons Private Island Maldives At Voavah
The third and final Four Seasons hotel in the Maldives is Four Seasons Private Island Maldives At Voavah. This is a hideaway and, due to its size, is more suited to larger parties and groups than couples.
Four Seasons Private Island Maldives At Voavah offers an exclusive-use paradise hideaway of Four Seasons and is rented out as entirely yours. Yes, you get your own island with this option. There are seven bedrooms, plus you have your own dive school, a Beach House, and a private spa.
There is also one two-bedroom water villa. Perhaps one of the most exclusive water villas in the Maldives. It is stilted above the fish-filled lagoon and features a master bedroom with an attached study or children’s room, as well as a separate, king-size bedroom pavilion.
Located in Baa Atoll, the Maldives’ only UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the fun here revolves around your impressive marine neighbors; dive with whale sharks, snorkel with manta rays, swim with neighborhood turtles, and fish for your dinner.
You can also visit local islands and cruise into breath-taking Baa Atoll sunsets on your 62 foot (18.9 metre) private yacht. Bring 21 of your closest friends and family with you and split the cost.
Four Seasons Private Island Maldives At Voavah has got to be the ultimate beach house! Contact our luxury travel concierge for extra free benefits at Four Seasons Private Island Maldives At Voavah and all the other resorts featured in this review.
6. Gili Lankanfushi
Gili Lankanfushi is one of your best hotel choices in the Maldives, whether you are looking for a relaxing family break or a romantic getaway. The photo above shows how lovely Gili Lankanfushi is.
Why is it so special? Well, obviously, you can enjoy the powdery white sands, palm trees, and endless sparkling ocean just like the rest of the luxury resorts in the Maldives.
What differentiates Gili Lankanfushi is that it gets fantastic feedback. It was awarded the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Award of Best Hotel in the World for 2015. This stunning island resort is just a short boat ride from Male Airport, making it one of the most convenient resorts in the Maldives. Plus, you don’t have to spend a large portion of your holiday budget on the flights to get from Male airport to your own private paradise. A boat trip is cheaper and faster than the transfers to many of the other Maldives luxury resorts, yet you are not giving up any of the luxurious features and beaches you would find at the resorts that are further away.
We love the barefoot nature of this resort. They say “no news, no shoes”, and sometimes, this is just what our overworked brains need. Gili Lankanfushi prides itself on being a place where you can leave all day-to-day problems behind and where you relax in total comfort.
The luxurious water villas are very special. They enjoy their own overwater sundecks with sun loungers as well as a large open-air living and dining area with daybeds and a rooftop terrace with a daybed and dining area. Larger residences include air-conditioned living rooms, private overwater hammocks, a private couple’s spa including sauna and steam room, and even a private cinema.
All villas are guaranteed spectacular sea views, impeccable service from both housekeeping and your personal Mr. Friday, and luxurious finishes throughout.
The best way to choose your villa is to take a peek at the island map and pick your ideal location before booking. Our own travel advisors can also advise you on what would suit you best. Jetty 3 is generally considered one of the most peaceful areas when selecting your water villa, though the whole island is quiet and boasts the best sunset views. Jetty 1 is a great choice if you like the idea of snorkeling right by your water villa.
With the clear waters and abundance of coral, colorful fish, little sharks, and rays, even just wading in the shallows is an adventure. For those who want to explore sea life further, snorkeling and diving are the activities that almost everybody wants to do. There are multilingual PADI-certified instructors that will guide you, whatever your level of ability.
Beyond enjoying the wildlife, well, water-life, you can enjoy windsurfing or boat trips to watch dolphins. For wellness, there are yoga classes or for complete relaxation, try one or more treatments at the Meera Spa. It offers massages and facials as well as saunas and steam rooms.
7. St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort
The St. Regis Maldives Vommuli Resort is one of the few resorts in the Maldives where you can earn and redeem Marriott Bonvoy loyalty points. Even on points, this category 8 property will cost you on average 80,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night and in peak season, 100,000 points per night, so you will be blowing a lot of points to stay here, but what a place!
This iconic St Regis is just a 40-minute seaplane ride southwest from Malé airport located on a private atoll spanning more than 20 acres, surrounded by beaches and a secluded lagoon with sparkling turquoise waters.
The resort features 33 on-land and 44 over-water villas, all stunning and inspired by the island’s natural materials and color palette. The overwater villas have been made in the shape of manta rays and have a large private outdoor terrace with a plunge pool daybed, sun loungers, and overwater hammocks. Sit out and enjoy the sunshine and neverending skies over your own private lagoon.
Inside your villa, contemporary design intermingles with local craftsmanship and an appreciation for the ecological environment.
The Iridium Spa and outdoor infinity pool are where you need to head for complete relaxation. A large variety of water sports and excursions at their diving center can be arranged by the hotel’s butlers. Exquisite food also awaits at six restaurants and bars.
8. Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa
Like a perfectly round coin, the Park Hyatt Maldives is another wonderful barefoot luxury resort, and we particularly like this one as you can earn and spend your World of Hyatt loyalty points here.
This gorgeous Hyatt is located at the heart of one of the world’s largest and deepest natural atolls. It costs 30,000 World Of Hyatt loyalty points per night, but we think this is a great deal on points when you consider the level of luxury you are getting in this resort.
Featuring a total of 50 land and water villas, the minimalist-style villas are designed beautifully and either sit within the island’s tropical foliage or are elevated above the water. Whichever you choose, you will be within touching distance from the cool ocean waters and picture-perfect beach.
While many of the rooms here are land-based, there is one room type that incorporates the water villa style of room. Unwind in 115 sq m water villas with 180° views of the ocean, features a king bed, indoor bathtub, sun deck with daybed, and direct access to the house reef.
The activities team at Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa’s 5-star PADI Dive and Activity Centre, Blue Journeys, can create tailored experiences to suit any swimming ability. The resort is home to the healthiest house reef in the Maldives. It is a pure paradise for snorkeling and diving, with seemingly limitless varieties of marine life and exquisite coral formations. Beyond the resort, you must go dolphin spotting and take a sunset cruise, and a one-of-a-kind Cross the Equator trip make for everlasting memories.
9. One&Only Reethi Rah
This ultra-luxurious 6-star resort is favored by royals and A-list Hollywood celebrities and is one of the best luxury hotels in the Maldives.
One&Only Reethi Rah resort is designed in an octopus shape with a huge 6 km of coastline, much larger than the coastlines of most luxury resorts in the Maldives because it’s located on one of the larger islands in North Male Atoll.
As a result, villas are spacious, and guests can enjoy beautiful ocean views and access to almost endless white sand coves and turquoise bays. A 45-minute luxury launch will transport you directly to and from the terminal, allowing guests to stay as late as possible on the island paradise before leaving for their flight. This is one of the many major advantages of this luxury resort.
This is also a larger luxury hotel than many of the more boutique hotels in the Maldives. It has 128 villas which are some of the largest resort villas in the world, with a minimum area of 135m2, high airy ceilings, and generous exterior space. In fact, your outside space will either be a private veranda or a stretch of beach or perhaps a private swimming pool with a large deck.
Water Villas are surrounded by the ever-changing turquoise hues of the stunning Indian Ocean. The view from your Maldives water villa is never the same. Recharge and relax in a thoughtfully designed living space; reinvigorate a few steps away, with a sweeping open-air sun deck that leads from your coastal room directly into the ocean’s gentle depths.
10. Milaidhoo Island Maldives
Milaidhoo is a luxury ultra-5 star resort in Baa Atoll, 30 minutes sea-plane transfer from Male. The island is teeny tiny but completely perfect, fringed by a powdery white sand beach and right on the most beautiful coral reef, which is directly accessible from your villa. The feel is very relaxed rather than stuffy, and given the price tag (it isn’t cheap!), it is an achievement to attain such a lazy feel whilst still being superbly pampered.
Nestled within the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in the Baa Atoll of the Maldives, you’ll find 30 very spacious over-water villas and 20 additional villas, lots of perfect tropical greenery, and a white sand beach.
For a water villa on stilts over the ocean, the very best is the Ocean Residence with Private Pool. Discover an over-water paradise with endless ocean views from throughout the suite while your personal butler prepares everything to your wishes.
This 475sqm thatched-roof water villa on stilts over the ocean has a spacious bedroom and wonderful ocean views throughout the villa. There’s a ‘secret’ loft deck on the rooftop overlooking the ocean, which is a wonderful place to chill out and take in the views.
Outside on the large sundeck are a swing chair, sun loungers, a private freshwater infinity pool, and steps into the ocean. The luxurious en-suite bathroom has ocean views, a tropical rain shower, and a separate deep bathtub. Set at the very end of the over-water jetty, this residence has separate living and bedrooms, giving plenty of room to make yourself feel at home.
The luxurious air-conditioned bathroom offers an indoor rain shower, a separate deep bathtub, and large-size toiletries by Acqua Di Parma.
These gorgeous rooms have all the bits you would expect from a luxury resort, including a premium coffee machine, discreetly hidden television, walk-in wardrobe, rain shower, bath with a view, and Aqua di Parma toiletries.
Idyllic beaches, world-famous diving and snorkeling, fishing trips, and cultural excursions are just some of the memory-making activities Milaidhoo will share with you. Take a dip with your dolphin, a whale shark, and a manta ray within this protected marine area.
Whichever Maldives resort you choose, rest assured that you will find paradise on earth.
Image courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi.
Note: Benefits offered correct at the time of writing but may be amended at discretion of the vendor. Posts may be sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own & are in no way influenced.