I not too long ago returned from 9 days in planet Earth’s most rapturous dreamland – the Maldives. I’ve been lucky to go to this heaven on prior events, and I’m struck by how its luminous magnificence by no means dulls; on this journey, I visited the fantastic Westin Maldives Miriandhoo, a jewel within the crown of the Westin Accommodations and Resorts group. I’ve labored with Westin for a few years as their Wellbeing Motion ambassador and I’ve skilled a number of of their properties around the globe; as such, I do know the wellness ethos that pervades each element of this lodge group properly, and it’s one which I really feel passionately about infusing into each journey I take. While I used to be hosted on the Westin Maldives Miriandhoo (henceforth WMM), I skilled the purest expression of their Wellbeing philosophy, free from the restrictions and confines imposed by a bustling cityscape, and as a substitute, in a position to indulge within the secluded tranquillity of island life. Image-perfect postcard-style, powdery-soft sandy seashores, mesmeric sunsets, the freshest seafood and ideal temperatures, all render it an unsurprising prime honeymoon vacation spot; for me, after just a few days, I recovered the hitherto misplaced sensation of feeling recharged, relaxed and renewed. Thereafter, the following week of pure revival left me able to tackle 2020 with gusto! Click on MORE to see and examine my expertise of this nirvana…
In your ease of consumption, this overview can be specified by alignment with the 6 key pillars of the Westin Wellbeing Motion, in order follows; 1) Really feel Properly, 2) Transfer Properly, 3) Eat Properly, 4) Sleep Well 5) Play Properly and 6) Work Properly.
1) THE SPA COMPLEX – ‘FEEL WELL’
A part of any wellness escape essentially contains the chance to check-in with one’s personal bodily and psychological wellbeing, and to give attention to nourishing self-recovery. I keep that there isn’t a higher means to do that than to dedicate an hour or two to actually doing nothing. Switching off absolutely, detaching the consciousness from worldly issues, and letting the physique and thoughts calm down is one thing I can solely actually obtain at a tranquil spa, and this heavenly facility excels at precisely that.
As you wander over the bridge you uncover ‘The Heavenly Spa’ elegantly perched on the apex of the island, surveying the huge turquoise expanse past. A dramatic but soothing view awaits you inside, and the placid silence is simply punctuated by the sounds of the waves assembly the coral reef exterior.
There are numerous remedies on supply. In case you get a therapeutic massage you possibly can, in fact, shut your eyes and go to sleep or maintain them open to look at the fish swim under by means of the glass flooring. Personally, as a educated sports activities masseuse, my choice is at all times a deeper therapeutic massage to actually iron out any knots and muscular imbalances.
The Really feel Properly credentials lengthen past the spa, and pervade your complete island, and are fed by the following 4 pillars.
2) THE FITNESS CENTER – ‘MOVE WELL’
Upon check-in, you’re provided a working session with the in-house coach as a part of Westin’s ‘Run Concierge’ idea. Vivid and early on the primary morning, we circumnavigated the c.2km island plenty of instances while the Maldivian dawn bathed the island in crepuscular radiance. The run, at this early stage of the journey, is a good way to see the island, set up your grasp of the spatial geography and study the structure, in addition to burn some energy early to arrange a full and recent day forward.
No coaching package with you? Not an issue, as WMM will lend you a recent set of exercise garments so nothing can stand in your means. One factor I particularly like about Westin properties is that they interact on this ‘Gear Lending’ program so that each visitor can rent recent New Steadiness branded package, together with recent sneakers, for not more than 5 USD, and in some properties (together with this one), for gratis in any respect. This implies you possibly can pack mild, and health actions are accessible to all friends, even when it wasn’t a core purpose for which you booked the vacation.
The health club complicated itself is completely beautiful, with floor-to-ceiling glass home windows overlooking the seashore and ocean exterior, raised a stage up. That’s uncommon within the Maldives, as most buildings are at sea stage, however this glistening panopticon provides you a wonderful perspective of the ocean and broader island. Package-wise, you’ll discover an ample array together with TRX, kettlebells, treadmills, rowers, ellipticals, cable machines, dumbbells and far more in addition to an in-house coach to information it is best to you want some assist or motivation. This was a really straightforward health club by which to have a exercise, which means there was one fewer purpose to not become involved.
I began the second morning with the fantastic dawn yoga session. It was simply what my physique wanted. After ten lengthy hours of sitting on a airplane, my physique was so tight, and even a mild yoga session was a wrestle, however I loved a lot aid afterwards. That is a part of my obligatory routine (the place potential) anytime I journey and is a given at this Westin too.
3) THE RESTAURANTS – ‘EAT WELL’
The Westin group has a nutritionist-led partnership with SuperFoodsRx and has created a nutritionally balanced, tremendous wholesome menu for all their lodges, complemented by a collection of revitalising juices curated by The Juicery. At WMM, the Govt Chef has overlaid this template with native Maldivian flavours, to replicate what will be domestically sourced, and what makes up the mainstay of the native model; I had the pleasure of a cookery class to make a Maldivian Tuna Curry dish to pattern this model and was enamoured with it (recipe to observe shortly!). This made it very straightforward to order from the common menu all through the entire keep with out having to ask the chef to change any dishes to make it more healthy. There are 5 key ports of name to cowl off with regards to meals;
This was my most popular restaurant on the island. It’s set inside an unlimited, shiny and ethereal area overlooking the lodge’s infinity pool and ocean past, with cavernous triple-height ceilings, and a satisfying facet. It provides you the choice to take a seat indoors or out, with out feeling as if you’re having to choose between both. On the menu, you’ll discover the ‘Eat properly’ choices which include recent ‘catch of the day’ (typically the likes of Maldivian yellowfin tuna/barramundi/reef fish), in addition to superfood salads and filling soups to call however a couple of. There’s a huge selection right here, which helps to maintain issues fascinating all through the vacation, which means you don’t undergo the ‘menu fatigue’ typically skilled on captive island settings.
This can be a smaller, extra intimate seashore restaurant the place you possibly can watch the cooks create every dish within the ‘stay kitchen’. There’s one thing impossibly stress-free about sitting barefoot along with your toes basking within the powdery sand while tucking into your locally-sourced recent fish dish. Flavours are spicier than Island Kitchen, with extra shellfish on supply right here.
I used to be fortunate sufficient to be on the WMM on the identical day as an unlimited yellowfin tuna had been caught and was being ready to be part-eaten, and part-frozen given the hulking dimension of the factor! Doubtless, it was the freshest, most scrumptious tuna I’ve ever had, with only a lick of soy sauce to render it a savoury masterpiece.
The Pearl itself is the centrepiece restaurant on the island and means that you can take pleasure in your meal both exterior on the open-air deck, or inside. It’s a tribute to the nice Japanese eating places of London however with the attribute recent components of the native fishermen.
This beneficiant veranda projecting out over the reception, one stage up, is a part of the play area, the place you possibly can shoot some pool, take pleasure in board video games or simply hang around. It’s a stunning place to mingle with different friends must you desire to socialize – or just seize a drink and watch the explosions of colors over the Indian Ocean. It additionally doubles as a cosy night-time rain shelter for when a night monsoonal interlude decides to unfold at full-pelt!
THE BREAKFAST BUFFET
That is the mainstay of an indulgent lodge expertise; there’s an unlimited array of selections right here catering for a collection of cuisines – Chinese language, Japanese, French and plenty of extra. My most popular selection is a basic omelette and one of many freshly squeezed juices on supply, in addition to among the unique native fruit, however that covers round 2% of the out there providing! The breakfast venue is bodily primarily based within the fantastic area of the Island Kitchen, so there’s a recent really feel blowing by means of the entire breakfast expertise.
4) THE ROOMS – ‘SLEEP WELL’
The seashore villas (my chosen type of lodging, as I fairly like strong floor underfoot!) are spacious, minimally appointed in a vogue which promotes cognitive ease, and are all sea-facing. They every have their very own little personal slice of seashore and naturally, their very own personal pool. Relying on the orientation of your villa, you’ll both take pleasure in gorgeous dawn to wake you within the morning or a sundown masterpiece to ship you to sleep.
For any common readers of FitnessOnToast, you may suppose I’m barely obsessive about sleep… That may be correct. And why not?! We spend a full 1/3 of our lives sleeping so it’s essential to nail it. Sleep helps improve muscle restoration, restores & maintains psychological alertness, dissipates neurotoxin build-up which accumulates throughout wakefulness, releases Human Development Hormone so you possibly can restoration amongst many different issues, so it’s value investing in. After a couple of pretty tense months in London, I hadn’t realised how confused and drained I used to be till I arrived within the Maldives. After a couple of nights of tranquil sleep within the Westin Heavenly Mattress (a world normal at these lodges, and primarily an unlimited chasm of mattress, completely supported and enrobed in blissful 250-thread-count sateen sheets), I felt human as soon as extra. The addition of a particular sleep-well menu which promotes relaxation is a stunning contact.
5) THE ACTIVITIES – ‘PLAY WELL’
There’s a well-liked false impression that an island escape is synonymous with ‘exercise poverty’; fairly the other. There are numerous actions to be ticked off right here, lots of which hail from the well-equipped Dive Middle on the island! I’ll checklist only a few of word…
Snorkelling – the Mirandhoo reefs supply some distinctive viewing – you’ll discover clown triggerfish, powder-blue surgeonfish, I noticed manta rays and numerous different species. You possibly can snorkel simply off your personal seashore any time, and there are island villa reef excursions or excursions to reefs close by organised by means of the lodge.
Dolphin watching – as you possibly can think about there’s no assure that you just’ll spot a dolphin since that is in any case their dwelling advert they might be anyplace within the Indian Ocean. However the workers know their whereabouts surprisingly properly, so sightings are widespread. The dolphins will swim very near the boats while driving, such that you just’re virtually a bit scared they may hit the hull – however it’s completely protected!
Tennis – there’s a big tennis courtroom which you’ll e-book at any time for a recreation. It additionally doubles as a soccer pitch in case you need to become involved in any of the workers matches!
Cookery courses – The island is staffed by locals, which suggests that there’s a wealth of culinary data indigenous to this a part of the world. That’s an distinctive alternative to get below the pores and skin of the Maldivian fare so that you just return dwelling not solely with a way of restfulness but in addition with a further string to your connoisseur bow!
6) WORK WELL
Amidst such isolation, one won’t count on such a completely geared up enterprise middle with super-fast wifi, a snug ergonomic chair and all of the chargers you’ll want, however there are actually a number of of those hidden across the island. They host company escapes and offsites and have plenty of convention rooms with presentation services. While this wasn’t related for my vacation, I appreciated the delicate presence of the ability. I did make common use of the super-fast wifi although, for all manners of Instagramming, in addition to Netflix streaming on a few barely responsible events!
My 9 days right here had been transformative. I sampled virtually every little thing there was to expertise and drank deeply from the restorative elixir which flows from such lovely island life. In case you’re already accustomed to the Westin proposition, this can be your nirvana. In case you’ve by no means sampled it earlier than, that is the best place to induct your self. Their components comprises key threads which run by means of all of their properties, so I at all times have the sense of returning to one thing comfortingly acquainted, but completely different sufficient every time in order to not really feel like a bereft carbon copy. Whether or not or not you’re new to this, there may be the understanding that the beautiful climate (even the rainstorms blow over inside half-hour), delicacies, services and vistas will depart a everlasting impression in your vacation historical past. While it was not my first go to to the Maldives, it was no much less particular and left me with a valued sense of calm and peace which has guided me by means of the beginning of 2020.