Foodies take note, if you’ve ever been on a tropical island holiday only to find your food and wine choices extremely limited, we have your answer: LUX* South Ari Atoll Maldives, situated on the picture-perfect island of Dhidhoofinolhu, one of that nation’s biggest resort islands. In a refurbishment program through September 2016 LUX* Resorts & Hotels entirely reimagined the resort, updating its array of villas and pavilions and adding 10 new restaurants and bars cleverly designed to keep the gourmet options just a few steps ahead of guests’ expectations. Access to LUX* South Ari Atoll is via a 25-minute seaplane flight from Male International Airport. The resort offers a wide range of accommodation but we’ll take the magnificent luxury villa at the jetty’s end, featuring living and dining rooms with all-glass floors!

Umami restaurant is purpose-built  to present fresh sushi and charcoal-grilled teppanyaki and robatayaki. It also houses the Maldives’ largest selection of sakes and Japanese whiskys – tick! Street hawker Asian flavours feature at East Market and the newly created Beach Rouge (pictured) serves la dolce vita with the likes of ceviche, carpaccio and grilled fish, washed down with chilled rosé wine backed by cool party music.

Of the additional inclusions, the on-site island-roasted coffee at Café LUX* is a tropical dream come true. The resort also offers a 5-Star PADI dive centre, the LUX* Me spa wellness centre and, for the ultra lazy, 24 hour in-villa dining. The resort is supported by an on-site doctor – perfect for treating minor coral scratches or other tropical injuries. But let’s hope it doesn’t come to that!

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