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Maldives hotel review: W Retreat and Spa
  • A resort that delivers total relaxation and escapism. A nine-hour direct flight from Gatwick followed by 30 minutes by seaplane from Male Airport (loved the pilots' crisp white shorts, shirts and bare feet!) and we were in an entirely different world on the small but beautiful island of Fesdu...
  • On a golf buggy tour from the landing station, we whizzed through palm trees past flashes of deserted white beach and beautiful couples sipping drinks on underwater bar stools or gently rocking in huge hammocks, past the white tented top of the spa and clattered down a wooden boardwalk to our truly amazing room built on wooden struts above the sea.
  • The Ocean Suite offers total seclusion and jaw-dropping extravagance, from the wrap-around sun deck overlooking the Indian Ocean to the vast circular bath and infinity pool.
  • Ten. We stayed in an Ocean Oasis room, with views across the lagoon and the beach. The sitting room boasts a circular glass floor to the sea and brightly coloured fish below, particularly spectacular at night with underwater lighting. On our private sun deck we took turns dipping in the infinity plunge pool-cum-sauna or descending the small ladder down to the lagoon for a sea dip.
  • A couple or group of friends looking for a total chill-out atmosphere....
  • Delicious. There are three restaurants and several cocktail bars. Breakfast is at 'Kitchen' where the W philosophy (Whatever/Whenever) starts with a vast menu choice from sushi to blueberry muffins and a pastry chef eager to make something special. One night we were invited to enjoy the chef's tasting menu of 10 exquisite courses. And if you prefer to be more hands-on, you can try sushi making and mixology classes.
  • In the evenings, choose between 'Fire' serving barbequed choices at tables on the beach or 'Fish', slightly more elegant with a deck above the water.
  • Snorkelling on Fesdu's protected reef. I'm a nervous swimmer but once I'd dipped my head underwater I was instantly entranced by the colours and beauty of the underwater sea world - the shining greens and pinks of coral and the exotic fish. Frustratingly, I missed the turtle but apparently he was magnificent. You can also hire seabobs - a jet-ski you cling onto while it takes you underwater.
  • Visit the incredible Away Spa. The best place to chill out and relax you'll ever find....
  • Watch the sunset and bright orange moon rise on an evening cruise on the W's private yacht (day hire costs a tidy £3,000). Alternatively, enjoy a relaxed cocktail at the SIP bar (pictured).
  • Kate Moss was staying at the resort at the same time as us. Imagine waking from a sun coma with too little sun cream to discover the world's most famous model is stretched out and golden on the next lounger.
  • Avail yourself of the refreshment stations, which are are fabulous - dotted around the island and stocked with cold drinks and ice cream for when you're feeling a bit peckish after an evening at 15Below, the island's nightclub (pictured).
  • The W Retreat & Spa Maldives isn't really a place to go if you want non-stop action and agendas; it's more a place to kick back, laugh lot... and soak up the wonderful hospitality.
    Too book your holiday now, visit starwoodhotels.com