Pioneer of Maldivian barefoot luxury since it first opened in 1995, Soneva Fushi remains the ultimate island escape for many Indian Ocean-bound travellers. After welcoming guests to its island villas with the trademark “no news, no shoes” philosophy for a quarter of a century, the resort has added a collection of eight enormous Water Retreats to its collection, promising some of the largest overwater accommodation in the world.
Made from unpainted, sustainable wood, the eight two-level villas embody the rustic, castaway style for which Soneva is known. Inside, shades of light blue and green reflect the hues of the Indian Ocean and the green canopy of the jungle-covered island beyond, and a glass floor beneath the dining table reveals the colours of underwater world below.
The one- or two-bedroom Water Retreats feature retractable roofs above the master bedroom that reveal the blanket of stars or bright blue skies overhead, and both feature an upper level with roof deck, dining sala and 19-metre slide for plunges into the ocean. Ground floor decks feature a sunken seating area, sun loungers, private pool and a catamaran net upon which to loll above the waves.
Accessed via a curved jetty linked to the main island, where 63 spectacular villas are nestled among the jungle, the Water Retreats come with their own bicycles to get around the island, and Mr. and Ms. Friday Butlers are on hand to cater to all those castaway needs.