Dramatic natural backdrops are a dime a dozen in the Maldives, rendering design as a prime differentiator between a good, great and exceptional Maldivian resort. Taking full advantage of the island nation’s blue-ombre waters, biodiverse sandy shallows, and palm-laced parcels without overpowering them with man-made excess requires a fine balancing act, one which Anantara Kihavah-Maldives Villas has superbly achieved.
Deep within the country’s most definitive dreamscape, Baa Atoll, the thatched-roof overwater pool villas at Anantara Kihavah honor the vast oceanic surrounds through grand yet unfussy productions of transitional indoor-outdoor space. A sleek — and sizeable — infinity edge pool anchors each villa, perched on what feels like the edge of the world. The pool replaces a traditional living area, offering direct access from all nooks: the bedroom’s floor-to-ceiling, retractable glass side doors; the bath’s glass-bottomed sunken tub and a sprawling daybed; and the deck’s hanging swing bed and duo of thick, twined hammocks which sway over the ocean blues.
A slew of next-generation, greater resort amenities also impress. At the otherworldly underwater restaurant, SEA, glass walls serve as windows to the Baa Atoll’s prolific marine life. Back above water, cocktails are served at the bi-level bar, SKY. On its rooftop lounge, a backless concentric circular daybed with full 180-degree recline lends to unparalleled stargazing. There’s arguably no better place on Earth to let your mind drift to a fantasy galaxy far, far away — or simply revere the one you’re currently in. anantara.com
Photography courtesy of Anantara Kihavah-Maldives Villas
Text: Paul Rubio