The transfer process is slightly longer than reaching a resort by seaplane and as a result it deters a lot of people from coming here. For those looking for a truly remote and tranquil island, this is the perfect barrier to entry. It keeps out the noisy groups looking to ostentatiously display wealth with as little effort as possible.
Indeed it's the only resort I've been to where guests regularly greet each other and interact as if they were residents of a small village (which they effectively are).
A lot of Maldivian resorts are like fast food: convenient, nicely packaged, initially satisfying but ultimately devoid of substance.
The Park Hyatt is the antithesis to this.
My expectations were very high going into this and Silvan quite honestly smashed them.
If you remove the safari element for a second and look only at the hard product, Silvan is already in the very top tier of anything I've ever seen. In terms of the sheer personal space, the private pool, the outdoor terrace and the very high end decor, only places like Amanoi or the Waldorf Astoria Maldives come close.
Even if you don't have Priority Pass the value for money here is pretty phenomenal. 210ZAR (roughly $12) will get you not only a comfy seat away from the main terminal but also a massive selection of drinks as well as some delicious home made food.
This is a hotel that is moments away from the airport. It ticks all of the items in my basics checklist and also has a full size gym and excellent restaurant.
The room decor is a cut above most airport hotels globally, as is the service.
Unless you have a layover of over 20 hours I can't imagine why you'd consider anywhere else in Joburg.
It's safe to say that this stay absolutely blew away all of my expectations. Amilla is a resort that delivered not just on the things that I thought I wanted it fulfilled knew needs that I didn't even know I had.
The food was comfortably amongst the best we've ever encountered in the Maldives. The bed was also the biggest and the snorkelling the best I've ever encountered.
The variety of accommodation options is fantastic and the combination of beach, treetop, bubble and overwater could keep you entertained for weeks.
PCR Testing is an inevitability of the current travel environment and if you're UK based it certainly seems that this will be a requirement for some time to come.
With PCR tests ranging in price from £100 to £200 or even more, I've been curious to try various options at the lower end of the pricing spectrum to see how they compare...
I was planning on flying home from Asia, re-entering the UK after the clocks had switched back to winter time and then planned to fly back two time zones towards Asia, to a city which gets dark at 4pm in the winter months...
I did find the finishes quite plasticky, the seat padding thin and the legroom confined when compared to AY's competitors though. Still, the seat is one of the better offerings from a European airline...
I arrived a little after midnight and walked the ten minutes or so from the HEL airport terminal to the hotel. The walk is mostly covered but there are a few stairs involved, unless you want to take a more circuitous routing. I waited until the morning to get decent light for the pictures in the public areas.
My stay at the Hotel Indigo Helsinki exceeded my expectations. The hotel felt very new and cool, without having the weird try hard feel of some Ws, I also love how small and cosy it felt. Truly a boutique feel, rather than the bland enormity of a regular chain stay. The staff were friendly, proactive and very helpful indeed.