Adaaran Club Rannalhi
The Italian tour operator Azemar fills around half the rooms on this resort. That percentage is less out of high season but still the Italian club feel is central to the sense of Club Rannalhi. If this sounds good, then this resort is good value.
Italian led, Cosmopolitan Second
Having said that, the guests on Rannalhi are a cosmopolitan mix of Europeans and Asians, who can get the motorboat night-time transfer from the airport. A quiet life can be had in the waterbungalows and on the beach near the sunset bar away from the main bar and theatre.
For those up for some fun, however, there is some sort of activity and music throughout the day and into the night. It could be aqua gym, bocce, volleyball, Latin dancing, quizzes or a number of other enjoyable, participatory events. And the active water sports centre on the communal beach offers canoeing, windsurfing, water-skiing and banana boat rides.
The Dive School Is Good
The dive school is large and surprisingly busy. The instructors are enthusiastic and clearly the guests are enjoying their diving. Snorkeling is also popular here. The reef is accessible around two-thirds of the island and the fish highlights include white tip reef sharks, eagle rays, jacks, turtles and passing dolphins. There are very few resorts and inhabited islands in this atoll, so you have the dive sites to yourself, but, on the other hand, the coral growth is still disappointing in this area.
The beaches are a good quality and run around about two-thirds of the island. The south side, along from the main bar (the main 'get-together' beach), has had to have a series of groynes built to counter erosion. And at the west end, behind the water bungalows, a wooden walkway has been built where the sand has disappeared. The lagoon retains its lovely sandy bottom, so the swimming is perfect — and the snorkeling is never far away.
An issue for some people will be the number of rooms. The reception, restaurant and coffee shop are gathered together in a spacious area, with fine sand in between. But the 96 land rooms are in tightly packed, two-storey blocks. Then there are 34 water bungalows as well. If you are gregarious (read Italian club) you might well think this is just fine, otherwise you might not.
The blocks are made of concrete, but they are attractively painted. Inside, they are of a reasonable size, pleasantly decorated and with good fixtures and fittings, including a hair dryer and a large multichannel TV.
New And Old Waterbungalows
The water bungalows face west to the sunset but they have relatively small sun decks and the privacy is not great. Interestingly the old waterbungalows are more popular than the new waterbungalows. They are darker, smaller and have a small television but they do have a glass panel in the floor and more glass on the lagoon side. The new waterbungalows are fresher, lighter and have a flat screen television.
The restaurant is large, with a rather grand, almost formal, look, which lends an air of importance to mealtimes, but the quality of the food disappoints. The resort has not maintained the high Italian standards it once had. However, the waiters are attentive and the chatter is encouraging.
Lounge Bar & Sunset Bar
Many guests are on an all-inclusive package and this works pretty well. For those not on such a package there is a new lounge bar where you can have snacks or special dinner, such as lobster. Here too they serve sunset cocktails. But, in truth, the place lacks character. The other place to have a drink and watch the sun go down is the small, outside sunset bar. Unfortunately, the sun sets between the water bungalows.
One bonus for the Italians is a resident biologist who conducts walks around the island talking about the natural environment (including a fine banyan tree).
The spa is a Coconut Spa, a company well known and respected in the Maldives. The room is upstairs and the decoration is nothing special but the Balinese masseuses are excellent.
Review updated 30 October 2011Join the discussion Star this resort Check availability and price
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