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Overwater Bungalow on a Budget: A Full Review of the Le Méridien Maldives

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With iconic overwater villas perched above impossibly clear turquoise waters, a trip to the Maldives has earned its place on countless travelers' bucket lists. But making that trip happen is another matter: The Maldives is expensive.

Above all else, that's what makes The Le Meridien Maldives Resort & Spa stand out. Opened in late 2021, this property charges a fraction of the cash (or points) you'll need to book almost any other property here. And while it may not be the most luxurious resort you'll find in this corner of the Indian Ocean, it's got everything you're looking for out of a trip to the Maldives: overwater villas, spa treatments, peace and quiet, and mile after mile of uninterrupted ocean views.

That made it the perfect spot for a first-timer to the Maldives, like myself. Take a closer look at everything the Le Méridien Maldives has to offer, from its amenities and services to its location and overall value.



Booking the Le Méridien Maldives

Whether you are booking the Le Méridien Maldives with cash or Marriott Bonvoy points, it's a solid value … especially for the Maldives, where everything is expensive.

But back when this property first opened in October 2021, it was an outrageously good value to book with Marriott Bonvoy points. Back then, you could book the Le Méridien for 35,000 points per night – or as low as 30,000 points during off-peak times or 40,000 points a night during peak periods. You could even score an overwater villa for just 45,000 points per night.


le meridien maldives marriott


That's the rate I paid when I booked back in February 2022 for our trip in early 2023. And thanks to Marriott's fifth-night free benefit on stays booked using points, that brought the price down to just 32,000 points per night – with another 50,000 points total tacked on top for the overwater villa.


le meridien maldives redemption


At Thrifty Traveler, we don’t accept freebies. We use our own points, miles, or cash to pay for every single flight or hotel you see reviewed here – including this one!

Unfortunately, you'll see higher award rates now when booking with Marriott Bonvoy points. This property fell victim to an award rate increase last March, when Marriott ditched its award charts in favor of a dynamic award pricing model.

Currently, you can book an award night stay anywhere from about 50,000 points per night during off-peak times up to 65,000 points per night during peak times. All things considered, this is still a pretty great value for a nice resort in the Maldives. And right now, there is great availability to book a stay at the property.

If you are paying cash, expect to pay between $600 to $800 per night. All things considered, that's still a very reasonable price to pay for an overwater villa in the Maldives.


Booking the Seaplane Transfer to the Resort

No matter where you stay in the Maldives, one additional cost is a given: You need to pay for a seaplane transfer from the Malé (MLE) airport to the resort. And it can cost a lot.

It varies from property to property, from $300 per person roundtrip on the low end to as much as $800 or more apiece. At time of publication, seaplane transfers to the Le Meridien Maldives costs $515 per person or $1,030 for a couple… not cheap. That's a hike from the $420 rate we paid when we booked in February 2022.

About a month before our stay, a representative from the property reached out to get our flights and arrival information to get our seaplane transfer scheduled. At that time they also collected payment for the flight. Unfortunately, there is no way to use Marriott Bonvoy points to pay for it.


Le meridien maldives Sea Plane Transfer Rate


But since this transaction is handled outside of your actual room reservation, there's a round-about way to cover the cost using points. That's why I used my Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card to pay for the seaplane transfer.

Once the charge hit my account, I was able to log in to my Capital One account and remove the charge with Capital One Venture Miles. When redeeming Capital One Venture Miles this way, each mile is worth one cent. So I was able to cover the total seaplane transfer charge with 84,000 Venture Miles.

It's not the most valuable way to use Capital One miles, but it's the only way to cover the cost of this charge with points, and I felt it was a great way to make our out-of-pocket costs lower – especially since I had plenty of Venture Miles.


Float Plane purchase eraser


Arriving in the Maldives

We flew the amazing Qatar Airways Qsuites from Chicago-O'Hare (ORD) to Malé (MLE), which we booked with American Airlines miles.

After arriving at the Malé airport, we were greeted by a representative of the Le Méridien Maldives just past the customs area. He ushered us to the check-in counter for the seaplane transfer.

The seaplane flight is operated by Trans Maldivian Airways. Since we had already paid for the flight through the hotel, the representative got us all checked in and handed us our boarding passes. He made it very painless and stress-free.

Once we had what we needed, we boarded a quick, five-minute shuttle to the seaplane terminal. Upon arrival at the seaplane terminal, we were informed that the Le Méridien Maldives had its own lounge where we could relax before our last flight to the resort.

To get to the Le Méridien lounge, simply take the elevator up to the first floor and take a right.


Male sea plane terminal


The seaplane transfer lounge for Le Méridien Maldives guests had just opened a short time before our stay. The lounge itself is very nice, with a chic design and ample seating for guests waiting for their final flight to the resort.

You'll find a buffet with complimentary food options, beverages, and free Wi-Fi.


le meridien maldives seaplane transfer lounge


le meridien maldives transfer lounge


le meridien maldives transfer lounge seating


The representative at the airport said we would have about two to three hours to kill before our flight to the resort. But after just an hour or so, the lounge attendant came and got us and said it was time to head downstairs to board our flight.


trans maldivian float plane


The flight from the seaplane terminal to the Le Méridien Maldives is only about a 35-minute ride. The planes themselves have room for about 10 passengers. Depending on who is onboard, you may or may not have to make a stop at another resort to drop off guests. In our case, everybody onboard was heading to the Le Méridien so our flight from the seaplane terminal in Malé went straight to the resort.


male seaplane transfer


The ride itself … isn't the most comfortable. The seats are quite cramped and there's no air conditioning, so it got hot towards the back of the plane. But again, it's only a 35-minute ride so it was easy enough.

The property itself is located on the island of Thilamaafushi in the Lhaviyani Atoll, which is about 85 miles straight north of the capital city of Malé. Generally speaking, the further your resort is from Male, the more expensive your sea plane transfer cost will be.


le meridien maldvies map


Once you arrive at your resort, you aren't going to leave until the end of your stay. All of the dining and entertainment is handled on the island where your property is actually located.

That's no different at the Le Méridien Maldives.


Lobby and Checking In

We arrived at the resort a little after 8 a.m. local time. Fortunately, the resort was only about half full during our stay, so our rooms were ready and we were able to check-in.

The lobby – or the hub, as the resort staff refers to it – is a beautifully designed open-air building that serves as a comfortable place for both arriving guests getting checked in and departing guests waiting for their float plane flight off of the island. It's also staffed throughout the day – if you need anything, this is where you will reliably find somebody.


le meridien maldives hub


le meridien maldives lobby


le meridient maldives lobby hub


After getting checked in, we boarded one of the many golf carts you will see around the resort for a quick tour of the island before being dropped off at our room.

The resort really isn't too complicated to figure out. By the second day, we had a pretty good lay of the land.


Le Méridien Maldives Rooms

At the Le Méridien Maldives, you'll have the option of booking an overwater villa or a beach villa. Overwater villa are located on what the resort refers to as the west jetty (on the left side of the map below) and the east jetty (right side of the map below).

The beach villas, meanwhile, are obviously located on the beach on the main part of the island.


le meridien maldives map


One suggestion: If you're going with an overwater villa along with a group of others, you may want to contact the resort to make sure that your rooms are on the same jetty. The overwater villas on the west and east jetty are the exact same … just on the exact opposite sides of the resort. Our group reached out to the resort and asked to be placed in the same area and it worked: All of us were located on the west jetty.

But you've got decisions beyond just choosing to stay in an overwater villa. You've also got the option of a sunrise villa or a sunset villa. The rooms are the exact same, but the difference comes in which direction they face. As the name suggests, you'll either have a sunrise view from your deck or a sunset view.


le meridien maldives west jetty
A view of the west jetty


Sunrise Overwater Villa

We wound up booking the sunrise overwater villa, which was the base room type for award bookings at the time we booked.

We were in room 221 which was located on the west jetty. Again, as long as you are in an overwater villa, the room types will be exactly the same. While by no means opulent, the rooms are very nice and well designed.

The main area of the room has a king-sized bed with a sofa at the foot of the bed. Both my wife and I found the bed to be very comfortable.


sunrise overwater villa room


sunrise overwater villa rooom 2


sunrise overwater villa room 3


Just to the left of the door, you'll find a full mini-bar. Whether you'll be charged for taking drinks or snacks from here depends on which meal plan you choose at the resort. Since we oped for the all-inclusive plan (keep reading for more on this!), everything was included aside from the champagne.

Although almost everything was complimentary with the all-inclusive plan, the staff only refilled it every three days. And if you wanted it filled more frequently, the staff indicated there would be a charge.


overwater villa mini bar


Overall, the room was great. But if there was one complaint, it was these saloon-style doors on the room's spacious closet. They really just don't seem to serve a purpose and are rather noisy. That wasn't ideal for times when I woke up earlier than my wife and went in to change.

We wound up using one of the benches in the closet to prop the door open for most of our stay. While that worked, I think a better setup would just be not having the doors at all.


sunrise overwater villa closet door


My favorite part of the room was the spacious bathroom with incredible views of the Indian Ocean. Stunning.


sunrise overwater villa bathroom


Just past the double vanity, you'll find the shower and bathtub. And while both have amazing views, you can also shut the blinds for more privacy if there are other guests swimming in front of your villa.


sunrise overwater villa bathroom view


But one of my favorite features of the bathroom is that it has its own door out to the deck area. This was especially nice after coming out of the water, helping to avoid tracking water all over the room by using the main door to our patio.

Speaking of the patio … it was also great. This is why you want an overwater villa, right?

You'll find a small café style table with two chairs which was a great spot to enjoy the sunrise every morning with an espresso from the machine in our room. You'll also find a net that is a comfortable spot to lay out and relax throughout the day.


sunrise overwater villa patio


Every villa is also equipped with its own stairs down to the ocean which makes it very easy to get in and out of the water. While there's not a shower on the deck, you'll find a hose just to the left of the stairs to rinse off any sand rather than track it into the villa.


sunrise overwater villa patio stairs


Finally, on the left hand side of the patio just in front of the villa's bathroom, you'll find two lounge chairs overlooking the crystal clear water.


sunrise overtwater villa chase lounge patio


Here's another view from our patio of other sunrise villas on the west jetty.


overwater villa view


Overall the room and the patio were great. If it were just my wife and I traveling, I imagine we would have spent far more time on our patio. But since we were traveling with a group of other couples, we tended to spend a lot of our time at the pools and main beaches on the island.


Beach Villa Room

Even though we actually stayed in an overwater villa, the resort staff was nice enough to let us into a beach villa room to check it out.

Aside from the location and the views, the room itself is similar to the overwater villas at the Le Méridien Maldives. Just outside of the room, you'll find a patio that leads down to the beach.


beach villa room


But there's one big difference: In the beach villas, the bathroom is located completely outdoors, which is pretty unique. Here is a look at one of the room's showers.


beach villa bathroom


In fact, there are not one but two showers in the beach villa bathrooms.


beach villa enclosed shower


On the other side of the bathroom from the enclosed shower, you'll find a double vanity.


beach villa bathroom vanity


All of the beach villas also have a private area on the beach with a few chairs that you can access just off of the room's patio. If that is more your style than the overwater villa, this is certainly a nice touch.


beach villa patio


beach villa beach chairs


Le Méridien Maldives Food and Dining

Meal Plans

One of the first decisions you'll be faced with when you arrive at the resort during the check-in process is what to do about a meal plan.

Quite honestly, it is a bit overwhelming as there are a handful of different options, so if you are reading this review before your stay, my suggestion would be to look over the options and be prepared to choose during the check-in process. And you'll want to do some math to figure out whether you'll come out ahead with one of these meal plans or paying as you go – a pricey endeavor in the Maldives.

Here are the meal plan options.


Bed & Breakfast

The bed & breakfast plan includes a continental buffet breakfast at Turquoise. Beverages are not included with the exception of drinks offered as part of the breakfast buffet.

If you choose this route, you'll pay as you go for all other food and drinks.

This plan costs $40 per day for adults and $20 a day for guests ages three to 11. Guests under three are complimentary.


Half Board

The half-board plan includes the following:

  • Daily breakfast served at Turquoise.
  • Half board meal plan is applicable for buffet dinner or a 3-course set menu (set menu only when the buffet is not available) served at Turquoise or for a 3-course set menu at Velaa Bar + Grill.
  • Beverages are not included and will be charged upon consumption. Still and sparkling island water is complimentary.
  • Destination dining, in-villa dining, and special events are not included in the Half Board meal plan and will incur additional charges.

This plan costs $120 per day for adults and $60 a day for guests ages three to eleven. Guests under three are complimentary.


Full Board Plus

The Full Board Plus plan includes the following:

  • Daily breakfast served in Turquoise.
  • Lunch with a choice of:
    • Turquoise
    • 2-course set menu at Velaa Bar + Grill
    • 2-course set menu at Riviera Tapas & Bar
  • Dinner with a choice of:
    • Daily themed dinner buffet or a 3-course set menu served at Turquoise (set menu only when buffet is not available)
    • 3-course set menu at Velaa Bar + Grill
    • 3-course set menu at Riviera Tapas & Bar
  • Unlimited beverage consumption from the beverage list served in the above-mentioned outlets only during meal time (breakfast, lunch, and dinner).
  • Selection of non-alcoholic beverages including soft drinks, mocktails, smoothies, milkshakes, and chilled juices.
  • Selection of premium hot and iced teas.
  • Selection of alcoholic cocktails.
  • Selection of spirits and wines by the glass from a select menu.
  • Selection of draft and bottled beer from a select menu.
  • Minibar – non-alcoholic beverages and snacks replenished once per day.

This plan costs $195 per day per person for adults and $98 per day per person for guests ages three to eleven. Guests under three are complimentary.


All Inclusive

The all-inclusive plan includes the following:

  • Daily breakfast served at Turquoise
  • Lunch with a choice of:
    • Turquoise
    • Waves Café
    • Latitude
    • Velaa Bar + Grill
    • Riviera Tapas & Bar
  • Dinner with a choice of:
    • Daily themed dinner buffet or a 3-course set menu served at Turquoise (set menu only when the buffet is not available)
    • 3-course set menu at Velaa Bar + Grill
    • 3-course set menu at Tabemasu
    • 3-course set menu at Riviera Tapas & Bar
  • Unlimited beverage consumption from the all-inclusive beverage list served in the restaurants & bars.
  • Selection of non-alcoholic beverages including soft drinks, mocktails, smoothies, milkshakes, and chilled juices.
  • Selection of premium hot and iced teas.
  • Selection of alcoholic cocktails.
  • Selection of spirits and wines by the glass from a select menu.
  • Selection of draft and bottled beer from a select menu.
  • Includes minibar alcoholic beverages (excluding champagne) + non-alcoholic drinks and snacks.

This plan costs $275 per day per person for adults and $138 per day per person for guests ages three to eleven. Guests under three are complimentary.


Our Thoughts on Meal Plans

We went with the all-inclusive plan. While it was certainly not cheap, our thought process was that if we wanted to have a drink a few times a day outside of meal times we would simply come out ahead. If you don't plan on consuming alcohol, you might be better off with the full board-plus plan.

Drinks were around $20 each outside of meal plans, so it only takes a few to make it worth it. Plus, the all-inclusive plan gets you access to more restaurants and most things in the room mini bar as well.

It was also nice not to have to look at the exorbitant prices every time we ate and just bite the bullet once when we saw our bill during the checkout process.

But it wasn't always a seamless process during our stay.

Throughout our visit, there seemed to be some confusion among restaurant staff about how the all-inclusive plan actually functioned. Each restaurant supposedly had a different menu for guests on the all-inclusive plan … but while some restaurants had those menus on had, others didn't.

Throughout the stay, it became less of an issue. My guess is they don't have a lot of people ponying up for that plan – especially not a group of 10 people.


Consider the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card

One thing that is worth considering if you are planning a trip to the Le Méridian Maldives (or any of Marriott's properties in the Maldives) is to open the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant® American Express® Card.

After a refresh last summer, the card now unlocks automatic Marriott Bonvoy Platinum Elite status. This status comes with space-available room upgrades but, more importantly, free breakfast at most Marriott properties for you and another guest staying in your room.

While the card does have a $650 annual fee (see rates & fees), it could save you roughly $80 per day for two for breakfast. No matter which meal plan you choose, they will reduce the price to account for the free breakfast. For a five-night stay, that was $400.


marriott bonvoy brilliant card


Between the free breakfast, up to $300 annual credit for restaurants, and all the other benefits the card provides, I thought it was a no-brainer for this trip. And since you earn 6x points per dollar spent at eligible Marriott properties, I earned a boatload of Marriott points by paying our final bill for our meal plan and other charges with the card.

Read more: A Full Review of the Bonvoy Brilliant American Express Card



With the meal plan information out of the way, let's take a closer look at the restaurants at the Le Méridien Maldives.

In total, there are five restaurants at the property.



Turquoise is the one and only place at the resort to get breakfast.

The restaurant offers an extensive buffet with a wide variety of Maldivian, Asian, and Western foods. We were traveling with a group of ten people and everybody was able to find something they liked. They also have a barista on-hand to prepare coffee any way you like it.


turquoise seating


You'll find everything from an omelet station to an Asian noodle bar and everything in between.


turquoise buffet


turquoise omlette bar


We also ate dinner at Turquoise a few different times during our stay  – once with a set menu and once at the buffet. While the food was good, there are certainly better options for dinner at the resort – depending on which meal plan you choose.



Tabemasu is a Japanese restaurant located at the resort. And it was by far our favorite option of all the restaurants.

It's only included in the all-inclusive meal plan so all other guests will have to pay an additional charge to eat here. It's also the only restaurant that requires a reservation. But even with a group of 10 people, we had no problems getting a reservation. In fact, we ate dinner at Tabemasu twice during our stay.




The restaurant is only open for dinner from 6 p.m. 10 p.m. daily and is located at the base of the west jetty.

If you are on an all-inclusive meal plan, you'll have a set menu to order from with a lot of great options. My wife and I ordered the sushi platter and an additional roll and noodle dish. There was more food than we were able to eat, and everything was delicious.


Tabemasu sushi platter


tabemasu sushi roll and noodles


When we came back a second time, we were able to make a reservation for 10 people out on the patio which was a great setting. My wife and I ordered the same dishes as the first night and both were, once again, wonderful.

Tabemasu also has an excellent cocktail list that was included as a part of the all-inclusive meal plan.


tabemasu patio seating


Velaa Bar & Grill

Velaa Bar & Grill is located right next to Turquoise. The property describes it as the place “with light-bodies wines, hand-crafted cocktails, and light dishes.”

The restaurant is open daily from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.

We ate lunch here a few times during our stay. But on the one night we decided to eat dinner here, they didn't have space for a group of 10. While reservations aren't required, you'll want to make one for Velaa if you're dining with a large group to ensure you get a spot.

The lunch menu is full of lots of great options. For lunch one day, we ordered the seared ahi tuna crisps and a few flatbread pizzas. Both were excellent.


Velaa Bar + Grill tuna crisps


Right outside of Velaa, you'll find le Scoop – an “ice cream truck” that serves up great ice cream treats throughout the day.


le scoop


Riviera Tapas & Bar

Riviera Tapas & Bar is the newest restaurant at the resort. We were told it had just opened for business in October 2022.

As the name suggests, the restaurant serves authentic Spanish-style small plates. The restaurant is open daily from 11 a.m. to midnight.


le meridien riviera tapas bar


Riviera Tapas & Bar also has a great bar that also opens daily at 11 a.m. that is just off the pool area. It's a great spot to grab a drink.


riviera tapas bar


You can also order many of the tapas-style dishes that are also available in the restaurant. This was a great spot to grab lunch: We ate here a few different times throughout our stay. If you're splashing around in the pool, there's even poolside drink service.

One of my personal favorite menu items was the sliders. They were nothing fancy, but we all agreed they were excellent.


riviera tapas sliders


While Riviera Tapas & Bar serves both lunch and dinner, we only ate lunch here during our stay. The menu is the same for both lunch and dinner service.

During our lunch, I had the lamb tenderloin. It was fantastic.


riviera tapas lamb


We also started with an order of grilled octopus, which I thoroughly enjoyed.


riviera tapas octopus


Waves Cafe

Waves is the juice, smoothie, and coffee bar located on the resort. It's open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Just beware that purchases at Waves Cafe outside of meal times are not included in the dining packages. Any purchases here for things like fresh pressed juices and smoothies will be extra.


waves cafe


Other Facilities & Amenities

Le Méridien Maldives Gym

While working out might not be at the top of your mind for a relaxing tropical vacation in the Maldives, the Le Méridien does have the facility to make it happen.

The gym, which is located right above Waves Cafe, is equipped with plenty of cardio machines, free weights, and cable machines, with plenty of space to work out. There is also a number of group fitness activities like sunrise yoga, group runs around the island, and more that are organized by the resort's fitness coordinator.

You'll get a schedule of events during the check-in process which includes all of the group fitness and watersports activities that are scheduled during your stay.


le meridien maldives gym


le meridien maldives gym 2


Sunrise Yoga
A sunrise yoga class


Le Meridien Maldives Spa

I never shy away from a spa treatment on a tropical vacation, so I was excited to check out the resort's spa to see what it had to offer. It didn't disappoint.

The spa has a vast menu of different treatment options, and overall, I didn't think the prices were unreasonable – especially for the Maldives.

My wife and I went with the 90-minute Balinese massage. The massage cost $180 per person, plus a tip … and it was simply one of the best massages I have ever had. The entire experience from start to finish was top-notch.

But the unique treatment rooms elevated the experience even more. Each table has a small square that looks down directly into the ocean. Watching the different sea life swim by during the treatment made it even more tranquil and relaxing.


le meridien maldives spa


If you are on the fence about getting a spa treatment, I would highly recommend it. It was one of my favorite things we did during our stay.


Le Méridien Maldives Pools

If you don't want to spend your entire day in the ocean, there are a few different pools that are available for use.

The main pool is located near the Velaa Bar & Grill. It was a great spot to unwind with a drink after eating lunch.


maldives pool


maldives pool


You'll find another pool near the new Riviera Tapas & Bar. Neither pool is massive, but both are perfectly adequate and a great place to relax.

Sadly, if you are looking for a hot tub, you won't find one at the resort.


Hydroponic Greenhouse

One of the coolest features of the Le Méridien Maldives is the hydroponic greenhouse on the island, which supplies the vast majority of produce that you'll find served in the restaurants.

Being on a remote island in the Indian Ocean creates some logistical issues with food, water, and other supplies. Growing their own produce on the island helps keep that at bay and also provides a neat element of sustainability.






We heard about the greenhouse a number of times throughout our stay – the staff is clearly proud of it. On our last day on the island, we took a quick tour of the facility and it is quite impressive.


Resort Activities

There are plenty of different activities available on the resort ranging from no cost to pretty expensive. From jet ski rides to private boat charters and everything in between, you should be able to find a few options that will work for your budget.

Here is a look at some of the available options.


jetski rides


group activities


Since we were with a group of 10 people, we all decided to go on the two-hour sunset dolphin cruise which was $90 per person – one of the most reasonable options on the list. In fact, we did it twice.

On the first try, we unfortunately didn't see a single dolphin, which the resort staff said was very unusual. We had a cooler full of beer and wine with us on the boat, so even without seeing a dolphin, it was still a fun experience and a great way to get off of the island.


sunset dolphin cruise


Wanting to try our luck again, we took another sunset dolphin cruise on our last night at the resort. We even talked the staff into letting us do a little bit of the hand-line fishing.

On round two, we saw hundreds of dolphins swimming right alongside our boat. We even caught a few fish – one of which we brought back to the resort and the staff at Turquoise prepared it for dinner for us for a small charge.



There is no charge to rent snorkel gear during your stay at the resort. Our reef in the west jetty was just a short swim from our overwater villa.

Each of the rooms is equipped with a lifejacket. Using them is a smart call when snorkeling: The current does get pretty strong.


Bike Rentals

The resort itself is massive and getting from place to place will require a lot of walking. You can also call the hub and request a golf cart ride, so that is always an option.

But if you are interested, you can also rent bikes for $10 per day which is a great way to get around the resort. There is no minimum number of days for the rental, so you can use them for just one day or your entire trip.


maldives bike rentals


You'll also find plenty of places to park the bikes around the resort. It's a fun way to get around the island.



Overall, the service at the Le Méridien Maldives was great. From start to finish, it was obvious that the staff enjoys their jobs and is proud to show off the resort.

That said, when we first arrived, the service at most of the restaurants was pretty slow. That was likely a result of our group of 10 people – a large and difficult group to handle by any standard. Throughout the stay, they seemed to figure it out: Service got exponentially better towards the latter part of our trip.

Every staff member we interacted with was genuinely warm and ready to help with whatever we needed. There were a few different times throughout our stay when we needed something and within 20 or so minutes, it was delivered to our room.


Bottom Line

The Le Méridien Maldives was my first stay in the Maldives, so I don't have any other experience to compare it to. That said, I really enjoyed our stay and would recommend it to anybody looking for a great resort in the Maldives that won't break the bank.

Whether you are paying with cash or with Marriott Bonvoy points, it's easily one of the most affordable options you'll find in the Maldives and I thought it punched far above its price point. It may not be as luxurious as properties like the St. Regis Maldives … but it's also nowhere as expensive.

Although you can book with points, prepare to spend some money –  and a lot of it. Food, activities, seaplane transfers, and other charges still made this one of the most expensive trips I've ever booked. But to me, it was worth every penny (and point) to explore the Maldives.


Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

6 Responses

  • Could you provide more info on the snorkeling? Multiple reef Ares or jest the one by your room? Anything extraordinaryto see? Fish? Coral? Easy to access?

    • Many different areas, but we never ventured much beyond the spots by our overwater villa. We saw reef sharks, lots of exotic fish and even an octopus.

  • Awesome review and tips. We are headed here in November! I did read somewhere on the hotel website that the sea plane only operated during certain hours. Not sure how that works if you arrive past the last flight?

    • Anything after 6 pm means you need to stay on the main island overnight so plan to arrive day before your actual hotel check in if your flight arrives at night. If you arrive in the morning hotel will arrange flight accordingly.
      i’ve been 2 times in this hotel just because of points deal that was amazing (30K per night or 120K for 5 nights. Both times we got upgraded to overwater bungalow that is truly amazing. Hotel itself is fantastic, staff absolutely amazing, food is great.
      What is not good here: if you are staying in beach villa your access to the water is little rough as this is coral “sand” not real sand so bring your water shoes. Both times I got either bitten by some “sand flea” or I had allergy to something because my legs got very itchy to the point that I had to see doctor to get some medication. 1st year it happened towards end of the trip and I did not even associate it to the island but 2nd year it happened on day 2 or 3 and I was told it could be sand flea. This is the only place on Earth when I had this issue.

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