Escape: Cheval Blanc Randheli, Maldives

Lara Mansour   |   08 - 06 - 2018

 

Just a four-hour flight from the UAE you will find Cheval Blanc Randheli. Opened in 2013 as LVMH Hotel Management’s second Cheval Blanc Maison, the property is situated on the unspoiled Noonu Atoll, just 40-minutes north of Malé, in the serene setting of the Maldivian archipelago

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With a feeling of peace and happiness, the 46-villa Maison offers the same stylish design and relaxed, friendly atmosphere as the groups sister properties in the Caribbean and in Europe. This property is ideal for self-reflection and a chance to try new experiences and challenges. You will undoubtedly return feeling relaxed, refreshed and fulfilled.

 

The property includes all the amenities you could ask for, with a the latest in-room technology and a focus on the details; subsequently making every guest feel special. Cheval Blanc adopts the European philosophy of Art de Recevoir, with the aim to give a truly personal approach to looking after its guests. A personal butler is on-hand 24 hours a day to assist with anything you need.

 

 

ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN

Elegant, refined and designed for stylish island barefoot living, Cheval Blanc Randheli was born from a creative collaboration with celebrated architect Jean-Michel Gathy. The Maison was designed in synergy with the island’s natural surroundings, and the striking architecture naturally blends with the atoll’s surrounding landscape. Great attention has been given to the privacy of guests, ensuring a feeling of space throughout the Maison. This is particularly reflected in the elegant design of each villa; lofty cathedral-style ceilings are framed by seven-metre-high handcrafted doors that create a strong sense of openness or when closed, an intimate atmosphere.

 

The flow of the resort is residential, with an abundance of settings designed for guests to use as they wish – for relaxation, for contemplation, for conversation or simply to enjoy a stunning view. The villas are furnished with materials from the Indian Ocean – teak, rattan, bamboo, thatch and coconut shell. These materials are enhanced by a stylish colour palette of white, taupe and oyster grey with splashes of pop yellow and green. As well as bespoke design elements and artwork throughout, a collection of 46 sculptural colour “spots” by artist Vincent Beaurin make each villa truly individual.

 

 

THE VILLAS

Set between lush jungles and the crystal clear ocean, each of the 46 villas, all available with one or two bedrooms, are a private sanctuary offering a unique residential experience and a spectacular sense of place. All have a large living room, spacious bedrooms – which draw the eye out to the stunning scenery – double dressing rooms and light-filled bathrooms with in and outdoor showers, while they all feature a 12.5m private infinity pool and dining pergola or pavilion. There are various types of villas to choose from.

 

The Island Villas are set within a luxurious garden and ranging from 240 to 300 square metres. Outdoor terraces allow for relaxation on the villa’s own white sand beach surrounded by an exotic garden. The 15 Island Villas are particularly suited for families.

 

Water Villas are perched on traditional over the water stilts. The 15 villas of 240 square metre offer an unforgettable living experience with endless views over the pristine Indian Ocean.

 

Garden Water Villas are built partly over the ocean with an overwater deck but also on the island with an exotic private garden, the 15 Garden Water Villas are unique to the Maldives and a true expression of island living.

 

 

HEALTH AND WELLBEING

Set sail aboard a traditional dhoni to the Maison’s dedicated Spa Island, where six thatched treatment villas overlook the crystal clear waters of the lagoon, offering guests peace and relaxation. The menu of Guerlain treatments includes 6 treatments created exclusively for the Maison including the Sun Ritual or the After-Diving Experience.

 

Four single and two prestige couple villas – the Orchidée Villas – offer a sanctuary for guests to discover Guerlain’s exceptional anti-ageing skincare products, a full range of Guerlain’s wellbeing treatments, the brand’s skincare, make-up and fragrance collections. To complete the wellbeing offer, the Hair Spa by Leonor Greyl offers exclusive, tailored natural hair treatments.

 

The Cheval Blanc Spa also has separate hammams – complemented with a cold plunge pool for a reviving experience. With its deliciously healthy Spa Bar, large swimming pool and serene beach, the Spa Island offers an ideal getaway for those seeking to indulge in a full day of pampering.

 

The island Yogi invites her guests to indulge in individual or group yoga sessions with various classes of Sunrise or Sunset Yoga, Aerial, Power or Weight Loss yoga for all levels, and Hatha, Ashtanga or Vinyansa yoga for intermediate and advanced yogis. You could also indulge in meditation to set your mind and body into an extreme level of relaxation with a choice of Concentration, Cyclic, Mindfulness or Spiritual meditation.

 

 

DIVE CENTRE

The beauty of the ocean in the Maldives is due not only to the colour and transparency of the water, but also its spectacular marine life. You cannot visit Randheli without seeing this wonderful spectacle: explore the reefs of Kuredu, famous for its large population of green turtles, or snorkel in the picturesque waters of the UNESCO protected Hanifaru Bay – a known nursery for mantas, rays and an array of sharks. The 5-Star PADI Dive Centre offers the full range of PADI courses. All of the instructors are multilingual with additional skills such as Underwater Photography/Videography or Marine Biology, and have years of diving experience. A wealth of tailored courses are available.

 

The qualified captain and enthusiastic crew enjoy sharing the island’s hidden reefs, lagoons and beaches. Any combination of activities on bespoke excursions are possible including fishing, snorkeling, diving. Popular excursions also include a sunset cruise where dolphins are known to swim alongside the boat or a traditional Maldivian fishing trip. The choices are endless.

 

FITNESS AND SPORTS

Connect with nature and immerse yourself in a wide range of activities and motorized toys for both young and young at heart. Exhilarating experiences await the most adventurous: flyboard, hoverboard, wakeboard, jetski and seabob… or glide with a pedal boat, kayak and boards.

 

If you want to work out you’ll find the idyllic fitness centre, overlooking the turquoise waters. The workout facility is outfitted with state-of-the-art Technogym equipment and a weekly schedule of complimentary classes. Or if you prefer to keep fit outside, you’ll fine two tennis courts, built according to US Open and Paris Masters standards.

 

CULINARY

Combining luxury accommodation with incredible food is a rareity. But a Cheval Blanc the aim to provide the culinary experiences of the highest standard and the results are pleasantly surprising. Food is an art, with restaurants that are entertaining, surprising and deliciously varied. The island’s experiences range from fine dining to relaxed alfresco in five restaurants, and three bars which complete the Carte Blanche in-villa menu and tailored offering.

 

 

THE WHITE RESTUARANT

This signature concept of Cheval Blanc Randheli offers a casual island chic atmosphere. Its contemporary yet relaxed style blends in with its stunning architecture, white sand beaches and turquoise waters. In this splendid environment, the White Restaurant offers an international menu balanced with Indian Ocean flavours, including Maldivian specialties. Guests can sit outdoor for feet-in-the-sand meals overlooking the lagoon or indoor with an option of private atrium rooms.

 

LE 1947

Named after Château Cheval Blanc’s most sought-after Grand Cru, here the Chef revisits French culinary know-how with local inspiration with a 9-course tasting menu that evolves on a weekly basis and is a truly unexpected gastronomic experience for the Maldives. The adjoining 1947 Evening Bar with its live piano entertainment has views over the glass enclosed grape cellar, while the nearby Cigar Lounge has a cozy atmosphere completes this fine dining experience for connoisseurs.

 

 

THE DIPTYQUE

The Diptyque, inspired by the concept of live cooking and interaction between guests and Chefs, is split into two areas. The areas – East Asian on one, Japanese on the other – invite guests to experience a different culinary journey. Each evening, the inspired team demonstrate their culinary skills before the eyes of delighted guests sitting at the counter right in front of them. For a more alfresco dining experience, guests can choose to sit outdoors on the beachfront, overlooking the ocean. Diners can follow the Chefs recommendations or choose à la carte from a menu which includes the freshest Nigiri, Makimono and Sashimi as well as delicious East Asian specialties such as Gyoza, Tempura, Dim Sum and Miso Black Cod.

 

TEPPANYAKI

Surrounded by the tropical garden and facing the ocean, the new Teppanyaki experience will delight the guests in search of theatre and culinary mastery. The menu will include beef from Japan, Hamachi, lobster caught in Maldivian waters, and fresh vegetables from the Chef’s garden.

 

 

THE DEELANI

This overwater, alfresco restaurant is the centre of the Maison’s Mediterranean cooking. Simple and focused on fresh ingredients, The Deelani invites guests to enjoy Mediterranean dinners inspired by culinary highlights from Spain, France and Italy, with nods to Turkey, Greece and Morocco. Throughout the day, homemade gelato, sorbets and granita can be enjoyed on the sundeck, before the restaurant’s atmosphere begins to build at cocktail hour. The evenings bring delicious tapas and fresh seafood cooked on a Mediterranean style grill. Menu highlights include Mediterranean Mezze, langoustine Prosecco Risotto, Strozzapretti with veal Ossobucco ragout and homemade pizzas.

 

FINAL SAY FROM THE EDITOR

 

 

The Maldives is surely one of the most beautiful destinations in the world and among my personal favourites too, but what really adds to the beauty of any destination is the property you stay at as this defines your experience.

 

My stay at Cheval Blanc was truly memorable as what this place offers is the true meaning of luxury and what the travel connoisseurs are looking for when planning their getaways. My beach villa was not only stunning, it included the most up-to-date technology, and the attention to detail was incredible. The resort offered exemplary service, friendly staff and one major personal highlight – the food! As you know, the refined culinary experience in many of the resorts in Maldives is not something that’s given much attention to, as the focus is often on the location itself and the activities offered. However at Cheval Blanc providing the highest quality food was among the priorities of the resort. Whether you crave fine French Italian, Asian, or even Maldivian cuisine, all options are available throughout their restaurants. You can even have your morning Lebanese “Manakeesh” baked by Lebanese Chef Saeed, who is also famous for his exquisite pastries. (Forget dieting at this resort!)

 

I also enjoyed an array of daily activities from snorkeling to diving to island biking and even exploring aerial yoga!

 

The spa island is also a highlight for me, as it is where you go to enjoy a relaxing day among lush gardens and the blue waters after a signature treatment or massage. (The therapists are excellent).

 

I totally recommend this place for every person that seeks a beautiful property destination and a refined experience as well as service that is second to none.

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