Monday, March 31, 2014

Paradise on earth - Gili Lankanfushi [Our Honeymoon in Maldives Part 1/4]

#throwback #maldiveshoneymoon #kittychandiaries

It's been almost 6 months since we went for our honeymoon in Maldives last October but it seems like yesterday! There's so many things to blog about so I am splitting up the entry into 4 different parts! :)

Maldives is really a beautiful place which everyone should visit at least once in their lifetime!

It consists of many small islands so please choose a reputable & eco-friendly resort instead of those dodgy ones featured on coupon websites which are mostly located on the main island and they don't even have a proper beach!

I blogged about planning for the honeymoon and researching on the different types of properties in Maldives. I chose Gili Lakanfushi mainly because it is a eco-friendly resort with really good reviews on Tripadvisor. Secondly, they were offering a good deal for staff at my previous workplace for this property for the time period that just happens to fall around my wedding date last year. Win win situation! :)

The boat that brought us from the airport to the resort. It's christened "Gili goes swiftly".

The first view of our resort from the boat! The resort's jetty. 
*EXCITED!!* O(≧∇≦)O

Each villa is assigned a personal butler, either a Mr Friday or Ms Friday (with reference to Robinson Crusoe's Castaway story). Our Ms Friday was Momoko-san from Hokkaido, Japan! She's really sweet and has ninja-ish abilities. She seems to be always aware on where we are and appearing out of the blue to enquire about our stay and if we need any assistance. 

Momoko-san met us at the jetty to welcome us to the resort. Even the General Manager was there to shake hands and welcome everyone! (There were 3 other couples on the same boat with us). Sooo freaking amazing! We were being driven in separate buggies to our villas by our own Mr or Ms Friday. Along the way, he/she will bring us to the important places of the resort (restaurant, library, swimming pool, etc) to introduce us to the layout so we will know where everything is when we explore the place by ourselves later.

Beautiful white sandy beaches!

Well-maintained shaded pathways.

It's easy to walk on those sandy paths bare-footed (no shoes, no news policy means we walk around without our shoes) because the staff will sweep the ground of rough stones, twigs and fallen leaves a few times a day. Amazingly I was never bitten during my entire stay on the island! I asked Momoko-san and she told me that there are mosquito fogging a few times a day to keep away the mosquitoes. Strangely I never noticed the mosquito fogging being carried out. They really work in stealth mode! 


LOOK AT THIS VIEW! (*´ ˘ `*).。oO ( ♡ )

Our villa (number 42) is at the sunset view jetty. I would have preferred the other jetties with the sunrise view because the waters there are calmer and there are more fishes there. Over at our side, it's facing the open sea so the waters are rougher.. which makes rainy nights really scary because during one night it rained so heavily and the wind was so strong that we can feel the whole villa shaking. SHAKING!! And the umbrella (with a heavy cement stand) toppled over. If you are going, choose jetty 1 & 2, not 3.

First look of our villa from our buggy! Looks so big & comfy!

Noticed all the pots situated along the jetty? 

They are there for a purpose! During the day, the wooden plank gets quite hot and it's quite uncomfortable to walk on them bare-footed. The smart folks at the resort placed these pots along the way so you can water your feet with cold water while walking along the jetty. The water is collected when it rains, but I saw a staff filling them up with the cold seawater using a pail with a string attached to it so it will always be full of water. 


Our door bell! Ring a ling!

Slide to let the staff know if we wished to be disturbed or not.
Eyes closed means "Do not disturb please!".

This is the main door and the living room.

We didn't even sat on the sofa even once, let alone play with the chess set or the backgammon game because the only air-conditioned area is the bedroom and we are either outside exploring the villa or hiding in the bedroom. They are all water proof because the front part of it is the open sea and water may splash in during heavy rains.

Le hubby exploring the villa looking for techie stuff (more on that later).

This is the sundeck that leads out from our living room.

From the sundeck you can see the upper floor of our villa. 
Le hubby was filming a video :)

There's a mini sheltered area upstairs where we can have a drink or two (we didn't cos it was too hot). It overlooks the living room. I think the villa is also suitable for family with children cos they can pretend to be explorers or something.

There's a day bed upstairs which we can ask our butler to set up pillows and blankets so we can "snuggle under the stars", but I prefer the comfortable king bed downstairs in the air-conditioned room. Heh heh! 

You can see dark clouds from afar here cos it was raining very heavily before we arrived on Day 1 but the rain miraculously stopped when we touched down at Male Airport. Blessings from God! Also, it only rained during the nights and for a short while during one of the day.. so we are really blessed. On the last day when we left, it rained while we were in the boat to the airport (freaky cos the boat is so small and had to go against the strong waves). Also, I heard from the hotel (I emailed them afterwards) that the moment we left, it rained the entire week. Kua kua kua for the other travellers.

I included pictures from several days so the sky looks overcast in some pictures but super sunny in others. Like this super sunny picture of the table we had on the 2nd floor..

We can choose to have breakfast in the villa and they will set it up here for us. But we walked/cycled to the restaurant for the buffet breakfast everyday cos it's too hot to eat upstairs and I'm terribly afraid of getting sun spots. Moreover there's more variety at the restaurant. ^_^

I know it's strange to choose Maldives as a honeymoon destination when I don't like to suntan. Well, I love the ocean & the fishes but I don't like getting sunspots on my face or being tanned.. so I just put on loads of sunscreen & sunblock lotion (triple layer) before I leave the villa everyday. Even so, I still became a little tanned and Le hubby said it's a good look for me cos I've been so pale & sickly last year when I was working in the night shift + falling sick & being hospitalized. I have already lost the tanned look (thank God!) but at least I don't look so pale & sickly anymore because I have proper sleeping hours and I am not overworked like I used to be. 

This is the toilet & walk-in wardrobe!

There's a pathway (over water) that leads to the shower area. On the left of the picture you can see a cloth curtain.. that is actually the staircase entrance that leads you directly down to the water! We never used the stairs and Le hubby covered it so the sunlight won't get in. Hahahahaha!
Our cupboard beside the rack where I hung my dresses.

There's a lot of amenties here. Aloe Vera gel, sun block lotion, shampoo/conditioner (you can choose from 3 different scents before you arrive and they will stock it for you), full-sized toothpaste (colgate), full-sized toothbrushes (oral-b), rubber-bands, etc. Anything you need just call and they will deliver it. There's a turtle plushie which you can bring home and they will charge USD25 to your room. All the proceeds goes to conservation efforts in Maldives. It's super cute and I nearly brought it home for my sister, but we decided she has too many soft toys so we left it there.

But I took a lot of pictures of it with Kitty-chan! ^_^

The bench where I like to lie down and stone to cool off when we come back from our swimming sessions. There's a little hole you can peek through.

The toilet! 

We have a key to the villa but we never locked the door during our entire stay. We just lock all our valuables in the safety deposit box in our bedroom when we go out and leave the villa door unlocked. There's no point in locking because anyone could have swam and entered through the sundeck. Hahahaha! 

Le hubby was trying to look for the switch to turn on the fans & lights but he couldn't find them.. I spotted a wooden box in the corner and found the switches in it! Really love the concept of hiding modern conveniences out of plain sight so it's more rustic.

Honestly I can't live in a kelong which doesn't have running water and runs on a power generator. When I was younger I went on fishing trips with my dad on those kelongs and it was bearable cos I was 10 years old and wasn't fussy about bathing/washing with rain water and using oil lamps at night. On our honeymoon? No way..........

Our lovely king sized bed with mosquito netting which we didn't use cos there was no mosquitoes on the island and we turned on the air-con when we are in the room. Super love the bed cos it's so comfortable!

There's a starfish on the bed with a sign urging us to save water.. 
Yes we will little cute starfish!

Here's the welcome amenity waiting for us in the room!

We didn't touch the champagne cos both of us don't drink alcohol. 
The other bottle is vanilla tea and IT IS SOOOOO NICE! OMG!!!!
♡。゚.(*♡´‿` 人´‿` ♡*)゚♡ °・

Little books with useful information about the resort, room service menu, etc.

The map of the resort is hand-drawn! So quaint!

There's a folder with stationery, postcards, tide information & sunset/sunrise information. I wrote some postcards and sent them to a few of my friends. It's only USD1.50 to send each post card to Singapore and the hotel will buy the stamps and post the postcards for you.

There's a storybook in one of the cupboards. Guess what book it is?

Le hubby was thrilled to find this ipod connected to the "hidden tv" and "hidden stereo set". It has thousands of songs and hundreds of movies!

Natural ice bucket.. a coconut! So cute lah!

My favourite part of our villa is the bedroom! It has so many treasures hidden around it and it's so comfortable & shiok to laze on the day bed and read on my Kindle while looking out at the beautiful ocean.

Chilling in the comfy bathrobe on the daybed with my kindle and lots of snacks.

This is what I see when I look out the window... Le sigh.

I also like to sit at the sundeck with my feet in the water trying to spot the stingrays, sharks and little fishes. The water is cool, very clear and the sand is so fine & white! This picture was taken at 6.45am in the morning that's why it appeared darker than the previous picture which was taken after 12noon.

There's a porcupine at every entrance in the resort.
It's for you to dust your feet of sand before you enter.
Super ticklish & fun!

We did not go swimming (Le hubby doesn't like to swim), but the swimming pool is gorgeous! The resort is so small & private that you hardly see people around! It's so exclusive and enjoyable.. unlike the bigger & busier properties like Banyan Tree or Club Med where you can't get a proper photo without someone photo-bombing you.

We also visited the Organic Vegetable garden! They grow their own fruits & vegetables (though they also import in food) and the area is actually quite large with many different varieties! I bet Mama Chew will love such a huge place to grow her flowers because she's an avid gardener.

There are many other things you can do on the island.. Watching a movie under the stars while having dinner, sunset dolphin cruise, spa, private dining for two on one of the mini private island, etc. I'll blog more about it in my next few entries.

Gonna end of this post with a picture that Le Hubby took of me during the sunset on our 1st evening there. It's such a magical place and I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to spend 5 nights there.


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