When I think about ‘all-included’ resorts (or even restaurants), the image that comes to mind is of a herd atmosphere, with mediocre food and no class. After all, I haven’t been on an all-inclusive holiday since back when it was legit to go to the huge resorts in Turkey (and it’s been almost 2 decades since. 🙈 Wow, that makes me feel extra old, hehe), and from what I got to see at the all-included hotels in Greece and Israel, not only was I not impressed but completely revolted by them. If you ask me, quality is always better than quantity, and when I go on vacation I’d rather spend a little more on the total cost per night (even if it “costs” me by cutting my holiday shorter) than compromise on the quality of my holiday.
That’s why I was on the fence about a holiday at the Dhigali Maldives resort when I first heard about it.
On the one hand, it looked amazing in the pictures, with an over-9 ranking at Booking.com and offering the complete Maldives vacation package. On the other hand, it was an all-inclusive resort, and not just all-inclusive but “Premium all-inclusive”.
Truth be told, I haven’t seen many premium all-inclusive hotels …
After thoroughly researching the resort, watching YouTube videos, and reading positive reviews, I decided there was no reason to rule out a hotel simply for being “all-inclusive”. Especially when it looked so amazing, combining the clear turquoise water and soft white sand of the Maldives with alongside the green, wild jungle. And so I decided to give that little word, “premium”, a chance… because, let’s admit it, it looked super-premium.
Let’s start from the end – Dhigali Maldives is an all-inclusive resort for people not willing to compromise on style and quality, but who want to enjoy their vacation without (hardly) thinking twice about anything else.
Let's Cut To The Chase – All the things you want to know about the resort
Arriving at the resort
At the Dhigali Maldives resort, pampering starts as soon as you land at the Malé airport and ends when you leave the resort. As part of the resort’s premium all-inclusive deal, a representative of the resort met us as soon as we arrived at the airport, made sure we checked into the seaplane, and accompanied us to a quiet and pleasant VIP lounge with WiFi, snacks, and free drinks.
The resort is on an island quite far from the Maldives’ capital city, and the flight there takes about 45 minutes. You should take into consideration that due to the long flight, there are sometimes stops at other resorts – in our case, there was a stop both on the way to the resort and on the way back. The landing is at a marina near the resort, and after a short ride in a speedboat, we were greeted at the resort’s pier. The welcoming party gave us cool towels, sparkling wine and jasmine, and even a sweet gift with local flavor – an origami of a bird, made out of a leaf.
Extraordinary. From the range of restaurants and bars to the abundance and variety of dishes and the quality of the food – just as good as great boutique hotels we’ve stayed at around the world, and even better.
We were at the hotel for three nights, and the variety was so insane that we felt quite a bit of FOMO (Fear of Missing out), simply because we could not sit at every restaurant and sample everything at the breakfast and dinner buffets (which were insane all on their own!). The all-inclusive experience of course also includes alcoholic drinks, with a selection of premium wines and alcoholic beverages that are part of the package (including a minibar!). Here’s a taste of some of the resort’s restaurants and bars: a pizzeria, a beach grill restaurant, a luxurious Asian restaurant, an urban coffee house, and more… in short, you won’t leave there hungry 🙈.
The island the resort is situated on is absolutely lovely – full of thick and green vegetation feeling like an untouched jungle, alongside soft white beaches with crystal-clear turquoise water. It is large enough for a fun walk around its beautiful beaches but small enough to be intimate. While you can circle the island on foot, there is also a buggy shuttle service that travels the island all day, and you can hop in it whenever you want to get from one place to another quickly (there is a super-cool feature on the resort’s app that involves these shuttles – more on that later 🤓).
The beauty of a resort such as the Dhigali Maldives that is you can choose between a super-quiet and calm tanning vacation on the beach or poolside (the private pool if you chose a villa with a pool, or one of the resort’s 3 common pools) and a richly active vacation, like snorkeling in the virgin reef, taking yoga lessons, surfing or even dolphin-watching or sailing a boat with a glass bottom into the clear ocean, and more – all included in the resort’s premium package!
Since we only had 3 nights there, and were also on vacation with a nearly 8-month-old baby, we decided to take things easy and focused on lounging on the amazing resort beach, a few steps away from our villa (while Jasmine was taking her nap), eating and drinking at various restaurants as well as enjoying the resort’s stunning children’s club. While you can only leave children at the club from the age of 4, Jasmine enjoyed every minute there and the staff was simply lovely! There’s no doubt the resort is also perfect for families in that respect.
Unlike other resorts we’ve visited at the Maldives, the atmosphere at Dhigali Maldives is much more vibrant. It turns out this also translates to the stories I shared on my Instagram during our vacation since I received quite a few messages saying “Oh, this hotel feels much more alive!” It’s not that other resorts have gloomy and boring atmospheres, far from it, but the Dhigali Maldives certainly suits those looking for an atmosphere of activities and socializing.
There are 180 various rooms at the resort – from bungalows on the beach to villas with private pools on the water. We stayed at a beach villa. The villa is very roomy (115 square meters) and has a minimalist design reminiscent of Thailand resorts, for its color pallet and materials. The most beautiful thing in the room (other than the breathtaking view of course 😍) is the giant and open bathroom including a closed rain shower, a perfect bathtub, and a stunning external shower. Honestly, we were a bit anxious at first about not having a private pool in the villa (after all, it is sometimes a must when taking a vacation with the baby), but since the villa was about 5 steps away from the perfect Maldives water, we didn’t feel its absence at all.
If you’re a long-time reader of my blog, you surely know that design is a very important criterion for me when it comes to hotels (and in general 😇), so I can’t talk about the resort without emphasizing its detailed design. All the public spaces – from the open lobby to the welcoming lounge, the restaurants, cafés, bars, pools, all the way to the children’s club – are simply stunning and make your heart (and eyes) smile. Each area of the resort has its own character, and the design thoroughly displays that.
Alright, so this is a criterion I usually don’t pay attention to, but when a resort has such a cool and advanced app, I can’t help talking about it! The Dhigali Maldives app is a concierge at the press of a button.
Other than the fact that it has an interactive map of the island, with all the restaurants, bars, and public areas (where you can see the buggy shuttle’s location at any time, just like an Uber!), the app allows you to make reservations for all restaurants, attractions and activities you’ve booked with a click of a button – from restaurant meals to spa treatments, all the way to nautical attractions. Absolutely wonderful.
So, bottom line, the Dhigali Maldives resort is the perfect mixture of wild jungle, white sandy beaches, and turquoise water; of tranquility and exclusivity and a vibrant atmosphere; of abundance and quality. The resort is great for both couples and family vacations since everyone can create the mixture that best suits their vacation style.
If you’re looking for a vacation where you don’t need to think twice about your expenses but still don’t want to compromise on quality and style – Dhigali Maldives is definitely the resort for you.
What do you think about the Dhigali Maldives resort?
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