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Luxury Zen style travel at Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives

lifestyle & tra…luxury

21 February 2014
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On one level, trying to discern the differences between the upscale Maldives island resorts feels like an exercise in hair-splitting. Baby-powder white-sand beaches, the gently lapping turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean, and thatched-roof bungalows stuffed to the rafters with sleek high-end furnishings and discreet high-tech pampering - just tell me where to sign, and wake me when I'm there.Put yourself in the mind of the truly discerning haute-luxury escapist, however, and you'll soon find there are indeed decisions to be made.

For example, are you content to be merely very, very close to those gently lapping waters, or must your villa be actually suspended on stilts above them?If the latter, then Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives is the logical place to start. Every single one of its 45 suites stands over the water, from the Villa Suites, clustered along jetties that fan out from the island, to the Residences, each at the end of its own walkway, to the ultra-private Crusoe Residences, marooned farther out in the sea, reachable only by pontoon boat.All are spacious, almost sprawling, decked out in a sort of island-Zen style, with DVD players and stereo systems, and at very least a sun deck with steps leading down into the sea.

Residences come with kitchenettes and open-air bathrooms, and dedicated privacy freaks can plump for the Private Reserve, closer to a Bond villain's island hideaway than any sort of traditional hotel suite. Half a kilometer from the rest of the resort, it's a five-building compound with two master suites, a private spa and wine cellar, a full kitchen, and Mr. and Mrs. Friday, your dedicated personal butlers - easily the most over-the top accommodation in the Maldives and beyond.How to get there:Gili Lankanfushi is a 20 minute speedboat ride from the International Airport at Male.  

Click on the image for more details and booking: