Planning on booking at the Conrad Maldives - any tips? | Australian Frequent Flyer
Australian Frequent Flyer

Welcome to Australia's leading independent Frequent Flyer and Travel Resource since 1998!
Our site contains tons of information that will improve your travel experience.

Joining AFF is fast, simple & absolutely free - register now and take immediate advantage of these great BENEFITS.

Once registered, this box will disappear. And you will see fewer advertisements :)

Planning on booking at the Conrad Maldives - any tips?

slodki

Intern
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
Messages
73
Hey Guys,

Planning on using my Citi points (transfer to HHonors) to book at the Conrad Maldives in April/May next year.

Hopefully will get Gold (via the Citi fast track program) which hopefully means I just need to spend points for 4 nights and get 5th free.

I've been checking availability for the base rooms (then pay upgrade fees for the OWV) at random times, and don't see any real issues with availability? Very very expensive use of points, however the other option is Bora Bora, but I'm trying to get there on points, and it seems to be a real PITA with award flights. Maldives seems a fair bit easier with points.

Also I'm really interested to see what happens when Hilton moves towards points and pay for all hotels by end of this month.

Keen to hear peoples thoughts!

Cheers :)
 

Daver6

Established Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
Dec 31, 2011
Messages
4,613
Qantas
Platinum
Virgin
Red
Flights
My Map
This is on my future radar too. Also keen to hear from others.
 
D

Deleted member 29185

Guest
Conrad Maldives was possibly our most relaxed, yet invigorating holiday yet. We spent 6 nights (from memory) and loved it.

I can't comment on your time frame (we went in January), but to be updated on the realities, I offer this precise,

1. Room booked will likely be the room you get. Having said this, the base beach villa is superb by any standard.
2. Tours/restaurant bookings need to be done early. If you leave it to see how you feel on the day, the chances are you'll miss out ... especially for Ithaa undersea restaurant.
3. Tours/meals/drinks are expensive. Be prepared to spend money if you want the full Conrad experience. (our spend for 3 pax. was approx. AU$15000 over the accommodation redemption, but this did include multi upgrades (2 nites over water premier villa + 2 nites beach deluxe + 3 nites beach villa) and various water activities included jet skiing, island hopping, whale sharks (yes, including swimming with 2 whale sharks) etc...
4. Upgrades can be negotiated over and above the base rate. I'm only going from memory, but an AU$2400/night room cost us an extra AU$600 a night over the base redemption. Yes, expensive, but no where near the full rate and well worth the experience. My personal preference is a beach deluxe. Very nice, but still a reasonable rate.
5. Ittha is OK, but not worth the money. It'd be nice to eat in the fishpond, but a morning tea is possibly the best value.
6. Happy hour over on the "little island" is good value.
7. Don't let a 14YO have "mocktails" as they're just as likely to be "cocktails" and you'll have a staggering, blithering idiot as a child for as long as it takes her to pass out!
 
Last edited by a moderator:

boomy

Senior Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
7,608
The three best resorts in Hilton portfolio are Conrad Bora Bora, Maldives and Koh Samui. I've been lucky to stay at Maldives and Koh Samui and booked Bora Bora for later this year (was waiting patiently to the transfer from Hilton to Conrad). The two resorts I've stayed at were both amazing and one of the best value redemptions with 5th night free. I bet Bora Bora is the same but it's much easier to reach the Maldives in style using points with EY or SQ compared to NZ or TN and you won't have to waste two nights in Male like you are forced to do in Papeete on route to Bora Bora so If not been to any of them I'll probably go to Maldives first.
 

Daver6

Established Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
Dec 31, 2011
Messages
4,613
Qantas
Platinum
Virgin
Red
Flights
My Map
Few questions in no particular order.

What do they offer to golds and diamond members here? Looks like no EL?

How do you get around from one island in on the resort to another? Is there a cost involved?

I picked some random dates in December. The price of a basic over water villa seemed about $100 more than the basic beach villa.

swanning_it Can you elaborate a little more on your room preferences? Drawbacks of the ones you liked less etc?
 

boomy

Senior Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
7,608
What do they offer to golds and diamond members here? Looks like no EL?
Diamonds get breakfast, complementary afternoon tea and evening cocktails.

How do you get around from one island in on the resort to another? Is there a cost involved?
You walk over the bridge, both islands are small. If you have luggage to carry or just feel lazy there is complementary buggy service to all guests.

I picked some random dates in December. The price of a basic over water villa seemed about $100 more than the basic beach villa.
Overwater villas are overrated IMO. Nice maybe for one or two nights to tick the box but we preferred beach villas which were bigger and more spacious.
 

boomy

Senior Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
7,608
Btw Daver6, as a wine enthusiast you MUST book the underground cellar experience. It worth the money!
 

Daver6

Established Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
Dec 31, 2011
Messages
4,613
Qantas
Platinum
Virgin
Red
Flights
My Map
Diamonds get breakfast, complementary afternoon tea and evening cocktails.
Full breakfast? Coffee tax? :rolleyes:

I presume golds get the breakfast too then?

Yup, I did notice the underground cellar and thought "I wonder how ridiculous the mark-up is" and then "I'm sure I'll still pay" :)
 

SponsorSFC

Active Member
Joined
Aug 5, 2014
Messages
644
We stayed just before Christmas. Using 2 free nights from the Macquarie HHonors card and 2 nights points.

I have some photos and video walkthroughs of our rooms in my trip report here

http://www.australianfrequentflyer.com.au/community/trip-reports-and-trip-photos/will-dom-krug-sq-j-79878.html

We paid in advance for an upgrade to the Over Water Villa for the last night and ended up being upgraded to the Deluxe Beach Villa for 2 nights and an additional night in the Over Water Villa. We are both Diamonds though so YMMV.

We both thought the DBV was a much better room, bigger newer with a more usable pool but watching reef sharks swim off the steps to the OWV at night was worth it. So if you can manage it a mix of the two is a good bet.

Over 4 nights including meals, massages and a whale shark excursion we spent about $4,000 AUD on top of the accommodation and sea plane cost.

Ithaa was nice to do but I wouldn't do it again, we did the cocktail hour at 11am but it started to get very warm towards the end so I don't think lunch would be comfortable. So dinner or the cocktail hour seem to tbe the better choices.

Koko Grill was fantastic and would definitely do that again.

Vilu no longer do cocktails but you can still get free spirits, beer and wine during happy hour.

Gold Benefits are below

Earn Hotel Points & Rewards with Hilton Loyalty Program - Hilton Honors:

Gold
Due to the very special nature of the accommodations at Conrad Maldives, we are unable to offer upgraded accommodations. However, as you are a valued Gold member, we are delighted to offer you the following benefits during your stay:


Daily full buffet breakfast at Atoll restaurant for cardholder + 1 guest
One bottle of wine* upon arrival
Chocolate & Fruit amenities upon arrival
Daily Happy Hour at Vilu restaurant for you and sharing guest in same villa from 17:00 - 18:00 hours

 

Cynicor

Established Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Messages
3,753
I'm going to respectfully disagree with a lot of this (swanning_it's post below). I've been twice in the last 3 years, 5 nights and 8 nights. I agree that it's an amazing and relaxing place, and an excellent place to holiday. But:

1. Agree. Upgrades are rare but improving for diamonds. Used to be no reports and now there is the occasional report.
2. April May are low/lower seasons and you probably won't need to book much in advance. Both my stays were in high season in December and nothing was booked out. Don't over think/plan it unless you have somewhere you really want to go on a specific night/event.
3. Fully agree. Including your flights (basically compulsory 500ish USD) you'll probably spend 1000-2000, if not more, per 5 nights per head.
4. Agree, upgrades are possible to buy, I like the over water for the experience but it definitely has downsides to the beach villas.
5. I've been to Ithaa twice, one lunch then a dinner. I really enjoyed it and the food is decent. Horses for courses- I'm happy to pay for good food in a location like this, but I'd never buy a $50 wine...
6. Do you mean the cocktail hour in lieu of an exec lounge? If so, I agree. Free drinks, though I think I only went twice.
7. No idea

My room pref is for anything that tickles your fancy. Ever been in an OWB? If not then get one. If you have, the base beach villas are decent. I haven't been in an upgraded base villa, nor in the deluxe ones.

Full breakfast is available on either island. It's full buffet on the main island and Al a carte buffet on the other.

Snorkelling is the main free activity, they give out the gear free at the shop and you return it at the end of your stay.

I generally swam from one island to another but you can walk across on the bridge (500m) or take the free dhoni, which is a fun little novelty the first time.

Conrad Maldives was possibly our most relaxed, yet invigorating holiday yet. We spent 6 nights (from memory) and loved it.

I can't comment on your time frame (we went in January), but to be updated on the realities, I offer this precise,

1. Room booked will likely be the room you get. Having said this, the base beach villa is superb by any standard.
2. Tours/restaurant bookings need to be done early. If you leave it to see how you feel on the day, the chances are you'll miss out ... especially for Ithaa undersea restaurant.
3. Tours/meals/drinks are expensive. Be prepared to spend money if you want the full Conrad experience. (our spend for 3 pax. was approx. AU$15000 over the accommodation redemption, but this did include multi upgrades (2 nites over water premier villa + 2 nites beach deluxe + 3 nites beach villa) and various water activities included jet skiing, island hopping, whale sharks (yes, including swimming with 2 whale sharks) etc...
4. Upgrades can be negotiated over and above the base rate. I'm only going from memory, but an AU$2400/night room cost us an extra AU$600 a night over the base redemption. Yes, expensive, but no where near the full rate and well worth the experience. My personal preference is a beach deluxe. Very nice, but still a reasonable rate.
5. Ittha is OK, but not worth the money. It'd be nice to eat in the fishpond, but a morning tea is possibly the best value.
6. Happy hour over on the "little island" is good value.
7. Don't let a 14YO have "mocktails" as they're just as likely to be "cocktails" and you'll have a staggering, blithering idiot as a child for as long as it takes her to pass out!
 

Daver6

Established Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
Dec 31, 2011
Messages
4,613
Qantas
Platinum
Virgin
Red
Flights
My Map
This is amazingly useful information everyone. Thanks for your generosity in time.

Interesting that the benefits afforded golds is the same as diamonds.

I assume all extra charges count towards base spend for HH status? Looks like 5 nights could get you well on the way towards diamond if that is the case.
 

boomy

Senior Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
7,608
Interesting that the benefits afforded golds is the same as diamonds.

I assume all extra charges count towards base spend for HH status? Looks like 5 nights could get you well on the way towards diamond if that is the case.
Gold don't get complementary afternoon tea and evening cocktails IIRC. Must be diamond or stay in the overwater villas island (that what we were told).

You will definitely earn a lot of base points only for the extras. Our stay was on points and I still managed to re-qualify diamond in two months on the year we visited Conrad Maldives. The wallet will take a hit, be prepared for that because paradise doesn't come cheap ;)
 

Daver6

Established Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
Dec 31, 2011
Messages
4,613
Qantas
Platinum
Virgin
Red
Flights
My Map
Gold don't get complementary afternoon tea and evening cocktails IIRC. Must be diamond or stay in the overwater villas island (that what we were told).
I was just going off the link SponsorSFC posted. Looked the same to me.

Having now read his TR the place looks amazing. I can now understand why the beach villas are preferred.

Can you drink the tap water there? Otherwise I can I'd like up spending an absolute fortune on water alone!
 

Cynicor

Established Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Messages
3,753
My memory was drinks were for gold and diamond but that could be wrong. I've not been gold.
There is a cap of 100 000 base points per trip so if you are going to spend big, make sure it's over 2 accounts. Some nagging part of my memory tells me that might have been lifted at some point but not by much.

Diamonds get a little half bottle of wine extra, free. That's about it. And higher priority for the barely extant upgrades.

Tap water is fine and they give you extra water if you want. All the water is freshly desalinated via diesel, one reason it all costs so much. Once you've been there you start to appreciate why everything is expensive. To get anything you need to import diesel and run generators and desal, before you even start preparing food. Ship in LNG to run the stoves etc. It's hell on the environment though...

And yeah, turn down th ebottles of Voss at the restuarants. I got flogged $20 USD for one accidentally. Didn't make that mistake twice.

I was just going off the link SponsorSFC posted. Looked the same to me.

Having now read his TR the place looks amazing. I can now understand why the beach villas are preferred.

Can you drink the tap water there? Otherwise I can I'd like up spending an absolute fortune on water alone!
 

SponsorSFC

Active Member
Joined
Aug 5, 2014
Messages
644
Tap water comes from the on site desalination plant so is ok to drink but may not taste the best, they give you plenty of complimentary bottled water in the rooms but none in the restaurants.

We never ran out before it was replenished.
 

boomy

Senior Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
May 10, 2013
Messages
7,608
Can you drink the tap water there? Otherwise I can I'd like up spending an absolute fortune on water alone!
You shouldn't drink tap water in 3rd world countries but don't worry, plenty free bottled water in the room and on request. Service there is top notch.
 

Cynicor

Established Member
AFF Supporter
Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Messages
3,753
I tried to avoid any bottled water, the desal is fine. Funny taste is definitely a matter of personal taste. I'm on unfiltered rainwater where I am, but the water in town is so high in ions (likely calcium based on where I am) that it taste bizarre.

Tap water comes from the on site desalination plant so is ok to drink but may not taste the best, they give you plenty of complimentary bottled water in the rooms but none in the restaurants.

We never ran out before it was replenished.
 
D

Deleted member 29185

Guest
swanning_it Can you elaborate a little more on your room preferences? Drawbacks of the ones you liked less etc?
Our favourite was the beach deluxe villa. Like the others have said, the overwaters are nice to experience as a bucket list concept, but they do have drawbacks. Firstly, the overwater villas are miles out so it's a fair walk (or a wait for a buggy which can be slow). They are also not overly private. To maximise the impressive view, means you are pretty exposed to anyone swimming past. The beach villas are excellent for privacy yet easy access onto the beach and both the beach villas we had were really conveniently located. If you have younger kids, the over water villas would present a higher risk than the beach villas as well. Having said that, the over water premier villa was simply breathtaking and we've certainly never regreted paying for the upgrade. It was possibly the most spectacular hotel room we've ever stayed in.

What we loved about the beach deluxe was the sheer size. It was massive. Direct, yet private access straight onto the beach, own plunge pool, huge spa in an elevated gazebo, private courtyard, all in all, superb. Just thinking about it now makes me want to rebook! The base redemption beach villa is also no slouch. It too is very big and has it all except the plunge pool, so the reality, IMHO, is that you really can't go wrong with the accommodation ... it's all absolutely excellent.

I'll add some pics. I do have more, but I'll keep them brief starting with the base level beach villa:

Beach Villa Beach Access.jpg
The private beach access

Beach Villa Patio.jpg
Patio looking into the villa

Beach Villa Powder Room.jpg
Powder room - Keep in mind, the only shower is outdoors

Beach Villa Spa.jpg
The private spa

Beach Villa.jpg
The Bedroom
 
Last edited by a moderator:
D

Deleted member 29185

Guest
This time it's the Premier Overwater villa:

Premier Overwater Villa Lounge.jpg
The lounge

Premier Overwater Villa Bed.jpg
The bed

Premier Overwater Villa Bathroom.jpg
The bathroom with the most amazing shower and an infloor spa

Premier Overwater Villa Deck.jpg
The deck, the view and the plunge infinity pool

Premier Overwater Villa with Beach.jpg
The villa beach. Not private, but it's so far out it may as well be.
 

AFF on Air Podcast

  • Air Chathams – AIR019
    Sat, 07 Sep 2019 16:41:06 AEST
      With less than two weeks until the upcoming Qantas Frequent Flyer changes, now is the time to make any last-minute Classic Flight Reward bookings! In this episode, Matt cha ...
  • Project Sunrise – AIR018
    Sat, 24 Aug 2019 16:12:31 AEST
      Later this year, Qantas will decide which aircraft it will use to operate non-stop flights from the east coast of Australia to London and New York – a feat it aims to ach ...
  • Choosing a Rewards Program – AIR017
    Sat, 10 Aug 2019 13:32:24 AEST
      If you’re new to the world of frequent flyer points – or moving to a new country – it can be difficult to know where to start. In this episode, Matt discusses the con ...
  • Travel Insurance – AIR016
    Sat, 27 Jul 2019 07:34:12 AEST
      They say that if you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel! In this episode, Matt chats to James Green about the importance of travel insurance, and ...
  • The Qantas Oneworld Award – AIR015
    Sat, 13 Jul 2019 02:07:50 AEST
      Learn how to fly around the world using your Qantas Frequent Flyer points as Matt chats to James Green, an award travel consultant at Frequent Flyer Solutions. This episode ...

Community Statistics

Threads
82,844
Messages
1,920,565
Members
50,530
Latest member
Jaay
Top