JW Marriott Maldives Resort and Spa: A Thorough Review
Ultimate luxury & service, CHECK. Beautiful sunsets, delicious food, & gorgeous villas, CHECK. The JW Marriott Maldives Resort & Spa literally checked off all of our boxes and to-date is the best resort stay out of all of our travels. This post will cover a thorough review of the JW Marriott Maldives Resort and Spa.
Travel is a joy and so should be the place accommodating you! Here we will provide our honest and thorough review of the resort & spa and hope it helps you with your travel planning!
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JW Marriott Maldives Resort and Spa Review Contents
- Top 5 Must-Do Things at the JW Maldives
- JW Marriott Maldives Booking and Pre-Arrival
- Review of the JW Marriott Maldives Check-in and Reception
- Beach Villa Overview and Review
- Overwater Duplex Villa Overview and Review
- JW Marriott Maldives Pools & Activities
- JW Marriott Maldives Gym Review
- JW Marriott Maldives Spa Review
- JW Marriott Maldives Amenities Review
- Final Thoughts
Top 5 Must-Do Things at the JW Maldives
- Go snorkeling off your overwater villa dock
- Sip a cold beverage on the Horizon Bar swings during sunset
- Take a sunrise yoga class
- Spend a relaxing night-in and enjoy the luxurious bathtub
- Borrow a book from the library to read on the beach
JW Marriott Maldives Booking and Pre-Arrival
Overall, the booking process was smooth and efficient! We made our reservations online with our trusty Marriott Bonvoy Credit Card utilizing points to spend 2 nights in the beach villa and 5 nights in the overwater duplex villa. After booking, we were contacted via email by the Senior Reservations Manager. We were provided with additional details outlining the arrival process, payment, airport transfer, restaurant and bar menus, spa menu, activities and best dives brochure, COVID arrival documents and immigration information. The entire process was seamless and the reservations manager addressed all of our questions quickly and thoroughly. Right away, we knew we were in great hands.
Pro-Tip: the restaurant and spa menus include pricing and all of the various all-inclusive options, take a look at the prices and try to plan out your meals to determine if the all-inclusive options will save you money or not. More on saving money here: Maldives on a Budget
Review of the JW Marriott Maldives Check-in and Reception
JW Marriott took care of all of our transportation needs from the second we walked off the plane in Malé. We were warmly greeted and ushered by JW Marriott staff to the Trans-Maldivian Airways desk to complete our check-in and weigh and check our luggage for the seaplane. After that we stepped into our private air-conditioned vehicle, equipped with WiFi and taken to the seaplane transfer. Upon arrival to the seaplanes, we were welcomed into the VIP Lounge to enjoy drinks and snacks while we waited for our transfer. After a very long travel journey, it was helpful to have such a smooth transition out of the airport and to the transfer – we didn’t have to worry about a thing!
The seaplane flight to the resort was about an hour long, and SO enjoyable! Flying over the beautiful islands and viewing the open ocean from the sky felt more like a ride than a transfer.
Upon arrival at the JW Marriott, you step off the plane and are welcomed by an entire crew of the resort staff clapping along to the drum beat. We were introduced to our dedicated butler, Gasim, who would be assisting us throughout our stay. We then joined the entire smiling procession and made our way down the dock to the island.
Our incredibly kind and helpful butler, Gasim, ushered us into a buggy and escorted us to our beach villa. During the quick drive, he gave us an overview of the island and provided us more information on the restaurants, pools and activities. A+++ for customer service.
Beach Villa Overview and Review
Our Beach Villa was absolutely stunning! We loved the high ceilings, open concept and the bathroom was a dream! The villa was clean, comfortable and equipped with all the necessary amenities. The staff also provided us with a complimentary bottle of wine and some delicious Maldivian snacks on our arrival.
The villa on the outside was just as beautiful as the inside! We had an outdoor shower, covered seating area, lounge chairs by the private pool and on the beach. The landscaping around the villa gave us complete privacy and direct access to the beach.
Overwater Duplex Villa Overview and Review
The Overwater Duplex Villa completely blew our minds! The main floor consisted of the master bed, full bathroom, kitchenette, large floor to ceiling closets, chaise lounge, TV and a small table and chairs. The upstairs consisted of another full bathroom, bar area, large lounge, TV and a huge viewing window. This villa could easily fit a family of 4-5.
The bathrooms in all villas had the same arrangement and amenities. We loved the separate toilet/bidet area, large step-in shower, direct access to the deck and the double vanities. The tub came equipped with beautiful bath salts and relaxing jets.
Of course, we spent most of our time outside our villa. We had another outdoor shower, covered seating area, lounge chairs and pool looking over the ocean. The deck had a secondary level with direct access down to the water. We were able to jump off the deck or take the ladder down to go snorkeling.
JW Marriott Maldives Pools & Activities
The resort has two main pool areas. The first is located near the reception area, main Horizon bar and the Italian restaurant, Fiamma, that is open for lunch. The pool has plenty of lounge seating and a few covered cabanas. We loved the the pool had many different seating and lounge areas so you could keep cool in the hot sun!
The second pool is located further down on the southside of the island and was next to the rum bar and treehouse restaurant that’s open for lunch. This pool had an amazing infinity design right over the ocean and also had plenty of covered lounge seating. The area also had lounge areas directly on the beach.
Snorkeling & Water Sports
The water sports pavilion provides complimentary snorkel equipment and kayaks. You can also purchase various tours, boat rides and rent jet-skis. We didn’t partake in any of the paid activities, so can’t comment on those, but the snorkeling was outstanding!
The resort did have a game room, however, this was closed during COVID.
The JW Marriott Resort and Spa has multiple food outlets and bars, in-room dining and the multiple options for all-inclusive.
Aailaa is the main restaurant that is open all-day for relaxed dining, offering authentic local cuisine and international flavors. We started our day here every morning for the delicious (and huge) breakfast buffet. There were so many options each morning and the menu options changed daily. They had multiple stations for made-to-order omelets, curries, and dim sum. Our favorite parts were the Asian dishes, the freshly made juices and all the fresh fruits and pastries!
We also dined at Aailaa for dinner one night, we had the Butter Chicken and the Chicken Biryani – both were outstanding! Vanessa paired hers with a Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand and Kasey enjoyed the Asahi Dry.
One certain nights, the restaurant also has their famous Maldivian Lobster special event.
Kashi is the come-as-you-are unique treetop restaurant located on the southern tip of the island that offers some outstanding views of the ocean. The restaurant is open for lunch from 1-4pm and offered satay, curries and noodles! We absolutely LOVED this spot. Vanessa ate the Pla Yang (steamed reef fish with nam jim jaiw sauce) and Kasey ate the Gaeng Keow Wan (Green Thai curry).
Hashi is the resort’s teppanyaki grill with a Japanese-inspired cocktail, whisky and sake selection. The restaurant is only open for dinner, but provides the perfect ambiance for sunset. The Ikura (salmon roe) and the Maguro Spicy Roll were our favorites! We also enjoyed the pork belly skewers.
Located next to Hashi, Shio is the resort’s signature fine-dining steak house. Don’t sleep on the Tajima Wagyu Tartare appetizer – chef’s kiss!
In Villa Dining
We opted for room service our first night of arrival since the jet-lag really set in. The menu is similar to the main menu at Aailaa and the portions were quite large! On our last morning, we had to leave before breakfast was served, so Gasim arranged for a breakfast of our choosing to be brought directly to our room prior to our departure!
Horizon is the main bar that’s open all day for your drinking pleasure! Enjoy a drink (or 2) on the swing bar seats before dinner, grab some beverages to chill by the pool or come here to admire the sunset and nightly entertainment.
The bar has a signature “Coral Cocktails” menu – try the Firedot Lichen Coral or the Spumosa Coral cocktails, they’re delicious! You can also order wine from the selection in the Wine Room. Kasey loved sitting at this bar and watching the seaplanes take-off and land.
Co-located with Kaashi, this cocktail bar mixes up some amazing Thai-inspired rum cocktails, twists on classic favorites, and 98 signature rums from around the world! Drinks can be enjoyed in the treetop setting, on the beach or at the pool! Vanessa’s favorite was the spicy chai cocktail.
The Wine Room
Wine lovers rejoice! The wine room is located within Aailaa and features 1620 bottles of wine and 320 labels from all over the globe! Since the Wine Room is located inside, we always enjoyed our bottles at the bar, pool or in our villa (cue bathtub). The Wine Room menu is available at Horizon bar and for in-room dining or to-go!
JW Marriott Maldives Gym Review
The JW gym views were to die for! Making it very easy to be motivated to workout! We saw many sharks and other amazing fish every time we worked out! The gym had treadmills, bikes, free weights and machines – everything we needed to a good sweat session.
The gym also had a weekly fitness class schedule. Obviously, Vanessa took part in the sunrise morning yoga sessions which were offered outdoors over the ocean – so relaxing! Also, group runs and other classes were offered at various times during the day.
JW Marriott Maldives Spa Review
Vanessa booked herself a massage treatment and it was hands down the best massage she ever had! The spa itself is beautiful, calming and luxurious. Each suite includes a private bathroom and private steam shower and sauna area. The treatment suites are located over the ocean, so you can sit and enjoy the scenery before and after your treatment.
JW Marriott Maldives Amenities Review
Every detail was very well thought out at the JW Marriott Maldives. In the villas, you’re provided with comfortable robes and slippers, a beach bag, and sandals for moving about the island. In addition, the villas were well stocked with coffee, water, tea and mini bar.
The resort had a library area for guests to take books at their leisure and computers for use – this was a great feature we loved!
Overall, the service provided by the staff was impeccable! The dedicated butler is available pretty much 24/7 if you ever need something. They assist with making reservations for dinner, the spa or other activities. Additionally, they are available for pick-up or drop-offs on the island if you prefer not to walk.
The villas are cleaned twice a day, including refreshing the water buckets outside the doors for washing your feet! Given all the sand on the island, we were shocked at how clean our villa always was! Furthermore, the staff also surprised us with delicious treats every night for turn-down service.
Overall, the JW Marriott Maldives gave us the best experience possible for our first time to the Maldives! The views, food and service went well beyond our expectations! We hope you found this review of the JW Marriott Maldives Resort and Spa helpful! We would 1000% recommend this resort to anyone looking for the ultimate vacation to the Maldives. To learn more about how we were able to make this dream a reality, check out our post on how we traveled to the Maldives on a budget of $5k!
Be sure to check out all of our Maldives Resources for more planning tips and inspiration! If this travel guide helped you out, let us know and share with a friend! If you’ve traveled to the Maldives, we’d love to hear about your experience in the comments below!
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