We stayed at the Park Hyatt in the Maldives. When you land in Male, you have to transfer to the domestic flight area and fly to Koodoo Island. From there, you take a 35 minute speed boat ride to the island where the Park Hyatt is located. It is the only establishment on the island so it is truly an island resort. We are on the fence as to whether we would recommend this resort to others. The villas are not properly air conditioned and a bit tired. We did, however, thoroughly enjoy the food and the gorgeous surroundings. The service was also very nice.
The most enjoyable part for me while being in the Maldives was the genuine opportunity to simply relax. I wrote everyday, blogged often, and reviewed the transcripts from the interviews I conducted for research but for the most part, I enjoyed the island breeze and the gorgeous aqua-colored water.
James and I walked on the beach every morning and admired how our toes just sunk into the soft, white sand. It is hot in May (you are very close to the Equator in the Maldives) but there is a nice breeze close to the water. The below photo shows the jetty where passengers disembark when they arrive on the island.
We also very much enjoyed the snorkeling just off the beach. James selected the Park Hyatt because it has a wonderful house reef fairly close to the shore. We brought our own snorkels and fins and enjoyed studying the wildlife underwater such as the beautiful Parrotfish.
Our pool villa was the second villa we stayed in at the Park Hyatt. The water villa that we tried was situated over the ocean and incredibly hot. The air conditioning system is not built to keep up with the 12 hours of direct sun and lack of insulation. The villas that are in the jungle enjoy the shade from large palms so we could get it down to 25C during the day. We thought the pool villas were the best anyway because they have awesome private plunge pools!
My favorite feature of the pool villa was the private and direct beach access. I even went for a moon-lit swim one night and just floated in the warm water while enjoying a FULL moon. Plus, if you go for a swim in the ocean, you can sort of rinse off in the pool before relaxing on the outdoor sofa.
The experience was relaxing and invigorating. I enjoyed swimming every day and the walk to the restaurants and main pool of the resort was probably a 1/4 or a mile or so. We walked about 2 miles everyday and that was wonderful.