Kandima — affordable luxury in the Maldives

Despite its party image, Kandima is large enough, inventive enough and ingenious enough to spike it for everyone.

By Rupali Dean

I could have sworn I was on a flight to a secluded island in the Maldives, only to wake up wondering how I ended up in an extremely stylish Island in Italy instead.

Or at least the interiors at Kandima with 264 retro-futuristic fashionably intended studios and villas could make you feel that way for a moment.

The Stay

Besides the sunset being on the house; at 3.2 kilometers, on the Dhaalu Atoll, Kandima is gigantic enough to get lost on, and the more walking or cycling I do, the more surprises keep popping up.

The fun begins with the swings that dangle invitingly in the sea near the boardwalk towards the reception and continues with furniture with pulsating pops of pink and turquoise.

Read: Amanbagh – the perfect escape in India’s craggy Aravalli Hills (June 19, 2021)

Though the nearby reef is amazing there are enough diversions on dry land to keep me occupied for the next four days. All adrenaline-packed action takes place at the water sports center and the pool side bar.

As for me, I head off to the end of the island to stroll deeper into the Ocean (yes I walk a tiny bit in the Ocean where the water is only a bit above my knees to reach a patch of Island which is surrounded by the Ocean).

Snorkelling ready at Kandima

An early riser can practise aerial yoga by the beach before a snorkeling trip nearby (a treat too, with angelfish and baby black tip sharks).

But this is also the spot to unwind: at the beautiful spa facing the ocean. Of the ten superb restaurants, the most charming is ‘Smoked’ for its decadent tasting menu of grilled meats and seafood.

I take a stroll after dinner and… Hello, what’s this? An alfresco cinema screening by the pool side…. . Certain things the Covid 19 hasn’t changed for me.

We are human beings after all, I have made friends with Neeraj Seth, the lively Head of Kandima and post the film (and through my stay) we have enthralling tête-à-têtes under the stars and to the clinking of glasses, new friendship is formed.

My Aqua villa is even more outstanding at night, a glass of Champagne in hand as I watch the lit-up sea: the light entices ditzy little fish, who get eaten by astute big ones, a simile for life to reflect as I sip my bubbles.

Service
Despite its party image, Kandima is not to be underestimated. An immediate professional, it transports on great energy genius without overlooking to get rooms, service and food pitch-perfect.

Dinner set up at Kandima

Resorts like Kandima make you happy because somebody has paid such care to detail, made such an exertion to make every trivial thing a thing of delight for you.

And I, for one, am turned a complete fan. It doesn’t matter if you are here solo or with an enormous pack of family wanting action: Kandima is large enough, inventive enough and ingenious enough to spike it for everyone.

Fast Facts
Kandima, Dhaalu Atoll; Call: +9606760077;
Web https://kandima.com/index.php/en/

Covid Measures: Being a one island one resort country with all open resorts being Covid free and entering the country with a Covid Negative certificate you can be stress free and live a mask free life for a few days.

(Rupali Dean is a noted food and travel writer based out of India)

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