Angsana Velavaru is located on Dhaalu Atoll, about a 40-minute seaplane ride southwest of Male International Airport. Like most Maldivian resorts, Angsana Velavaru is very isolated from the rest of the Maldivian resorts, and access to the resort is only by seaplane or about a 3-hour long ferry ride. The InOcean villas are separated from the main island at Angsana Velavaru via a 5-minute scheduled boat ride from the main pier of the InOcean Villa cluster.
We checked into the spacious 232m2 Deluxe InOcean Pool Villa facing the sunset side of the atoll. The villa has two storeys of space that guests can utilise, and most of the livable space is located on the first level of the villa, where we spend most of our time.
The Living Room
We were greeted by a small living room when we entered the Deluxe InOcean Pool Villa. Despite being the smallest area in the villa, the living room provided a great place to chill and relax without stepping into the bedroom. With the huge wooden doors wide open, we could see into the interior space of the entire villa. I find the furnishing in the living room to be just about right, not too sparse nor cluttered with ornamental furniture. A four-seater couch rests by the floor-to-window panels, with the blinds drawn up, this spot enabled us to see into the sea and marine life beneath. A knee-height coffee table, coated in the same colour as the couch and the rest of the furniture in the living room, is perfect for us to place our drinks on while obtaining entertainment from the numerous international and local shows from the 65″ LED TV. The cabinet the TV is placed on provides us with additional storage space in the living room. On top of the TV channel, Angsana Velavaru Maldives also provided guests with complimentary movies.
The minibar is located next to the main entrance and is stocked with soft drinks, beer and hard liquor, all complimentary to guests. The soft drinks and beer in the minibar are stocked once daily, but the resort would top up the hard liquors, which are unlimited upon request. Placed on top of the minibar cabinet are the usual coffee and tea and an electric kettle for guests who opt for hot beverages. A small dining table paired with two chairs is found by the glass door to the veranda, allowing guests to dine with a view of the Indian Ocean.
The bedroom is relatively sparsely furnished compared to the other parts of the villa. The centrepiece of the bedroom is the large king bed that faces the Indian Ocean. Unlike other hotels, the bedroom is not furnished with any TV, as though the resort intends for guests to rest well after a day’s water activities or take in the beauty of the ocean. The bed is very comfortable and gives us excellent sleep quality. Despite not having a pillow menu, the resort was able to provide us with firm pillows for a better night’s sleep. Large bedside tables with open designs are on the sides of the king bed, which offers plentiful storage space for guests to stow lifestyle devices. The resort thoughtfully fitted two international power outlets and USB outlets on each side of the bed so guests can charge their lifestyle devices. Besides the large table lamp on the table, the hotel also fitted a couple of reading lights on each side of the bed to provide additional bedside illumination. There is a sofa in front of the bed for guests to sit and look out into the ocean, but we mainly use this couch to stow our bags.
The Deluxe InOcean Villa has a large bathroom, almost the same size as the bedroom. The first thing that caught my attention was the standalone large bathtub beside the floor-to-ceiling window, allowing guests to soak and enjoy the ocean scenery. There are blinds next to the window to provide privacy to guests soaking in the tub. The sink countertop seems to be the centrepiece of the bathroom. Instead of having them flushed by the walls, the hotel uses a standalone design for the dual sink countertop. The black marble countertop extends from the wall, with sinks placed diagonally opposite each other and a mirror acting as a partition between the two sinks. This design afforded guests lots of space to place our facial products on the countertop. There are two power outlets on the wall side of the countertop for guests to charge their shavers or use the provided hair dryer.
The open wardrobe is fitted onto the wall at the end of the sink countertop. I was not too fond of this wardrobe design as it not only limits the number of clothing we can hang but also makes accessing clothing cumbersome. Fortunately, there are some open shelving and drawers on either end of the wardrobe where we can stack our clothing. I like how the hotel fitted a space for guests to stow their luggage at the bottom of the open shelves, unlike most hotels I have stayed at, where I struggled to find a space for my luggage after unpacking. The in-room safe is nicely hidden in the shelving space near the shower.
Flushed to the wall, furthest away from the windows, are where the walk-in shower and toilet can be found, placed inside the frosted glass doors. The walk-in shower is large and has a rain and a regular shower head. The water pressure and temperature were excellent in our assigned villa. There is a frosted glass window (up to the calf level) at the shower stall for guests who want to shower and see the marine life below the villa. The toilet cubicle is also rather sizeable.
Angsana Velavaru’s Deluxe InOcean Villa has a huge outdoor veranda. The centrepiece of the veranda area is the private infinity 1.3m deep swimming pool. Despite not being large enough for guests to do lap swims, the pool is sufficient for those who want to play in the pool or take beautiful sunset pictures. A four-posture day bed sits right in front of the pool, where we relax and enjoy the sunset. I like the addition of a small dining table on the veranda, where we could enjoy the views of the Indian Ocean with our drinks and snacks provided by the hotel. A trampoline-like hammock sits at one corner of the veranda for guests to laze on with sea views beneath. The hotel staff also told us we could use the hammock like a trampoline, which is quite fun.
What sets the Deluxe InOcean Villa apart from the InOcean Villas is the pier-like structure that extends further into the sea. Another four-posture large day bed sits at the end of this structure, bringing guests closer to the sea and the sunset it faces. A staircase at the end of the structure gave us direct access to the sea. There are beautiful coral reefs with an abundance of marine wildlife just a short swim from the villa. The current can be pretty strong from here as the villa faces the ocean directly with little shelter. We did not have to swim far to spot fishes as some corals were directly beneath the villa, steaming with small fishes. We even spotted a stingray while snorkelling near our villa.
Perhaps one of the most underutilised spaces in the villa is the rooftop terrace. Throughout our stay, we were perhaps the only ones using this space. The views of the Indian Ocean from the rooftop terrace were amazing! Access to the roof level of the villa is via a set of staircases behind a wooden door next to the villa’s main entrance. There is another day bed up top, placed under a pavilion-like structure to shield guests from the strong Maldivian sun, for guests to laze on or admire the magnificent views of the turquoise ocean. I like how Angsana Velavaru placed another small coffee table next to the day bed, enabling us to place our drinks or even a book.
Sitting in the centre of the rooftop terrace is another dining table with another two dining chairs. It would be a great place to enjoy dinner, especially during sunset. The resort seems to know that the best place to get a good Maldivian tan is on the rooftop terrace, which is free of obstructions. They placed two sundeck chairs at one corner of the rooftop terrace for guests to get a good tan. We enjoy the views from the rooftop terrace, and this is the only place we can view both sunrise and sunset from the sunset villa we were assigned.
The service at Angsana Velavaru was phenomenon! Every staff we met in the resort, especially those at the InOcean villa cluster, seemingly going all out to ensure we enjoyed our stay. They are very well trained in their job and made us feel very welcome. Every staff we met always greeted us with the warmest Maldivian smile that any guest could ask for. The excellent service began when we stepped off the seaplane and were transferred to the InOcean villa cluster. We did not even have to worry about our luggage as they would magically appear in our villa after we sorted out check-in procedures and were escorted to our villa. I liked how Angsana Velavaru set up a WhatsApp chat group with us to transmit vital information for our stay.
Of all the staff we met at Angsana Velavaru, we interacted with Ayaaz the most, who contributed the most to us enjoying our stay at the resort. Ayaaz was already at the pier of the InOcean villa cluster, ready to welcome us the moment the boat docked. He gave us a detailed orientation of the surroundings and what our package included as he escorted us to our villa. Although the villas at Angsana Velavaru did not come with a personal butler, the level of service and assistance Ayaaz rendered gave us the impression that he was our personal butler. He was always responsive to our enquiries over the WhatsApp chat. We knew we could trust Ayaaz to help resolve issues or check information. Ayaaz was very efficient in getting things sorted for us, such as reservations or even requests for housekeeping. Ayaaz would check in with us every morning and recommend activities that we could do daily. We would meet Totti whenever we were at the Azzurro restaurant. Totti always greeted us with the warmest Maldivian welcome whenever we saw him, regardless of whether we were dining at Azzurro. With only one interaction, Totti knew our preferences and always brought us our favourites. He even remembered where we preferred to sit and always set the table ready for us to dine. Totti would always share his local knowledge about Maldives and was very generous in sharing his knowledge with us. Upon learning that we were sunburned, Totti even shared a local remedy and got us a bowl of yoghurt to help us soothe the sunburn, which is very effective. Seeing Totti every morning at Azzurro certainly brightens our day.
Zahran, who worked at the Kuredhi Pool Bar, would always greet us with a smile and crack some jokes while taking our drinks orders. He would always find the best seats at the pool bar and pop by at the right moment to check if we needed more drinks. Whenever we were at Kuredhi, Zahran would know what we wanted without us even telling him. Then there is the unsung hero, Irey, the housekeeping staff who tirelessly kept our villa clean and tidy daily. He was meticulous in his job, kept every corner of the villa clean, and even took the initiative to tidy and arrange our toiletries on the sink countertop. Irey always knocked on our door every evening to check if we needed to top up anything in the villa. We met Silvia, the dive instructor working at the dive centre, who was very cheerful and always struck up a good conversation about the marine life around the resort. Being a marine biologist, Silvia was generous in recommending the snorkelling spots around our villa and the places at the beach where we can get a high chance of seeing certain marine animals.
Despite having private pools, the resort has a main pool located on the beachfront of the main island. The resort’s main pool is relatively small but sufficient for guests to do some decent laps. But most of the time, I saw parents playing in the pool with their children. There are heaps of sundeck chairs around the pool, which is sparsely utilised, perhaps due to the low season at the time of our visit. Guests can order drinks from the bar, which the resort provides complimentary from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily.
The resort’s Dive Centre is on the main island, where we sort out most of our sea activities. This is where we could borrow a snorkelling set for our stay at the resort. Before the Dive Centre loans out a snorkelling set, guests must take a swimming test with the snorkelling set to show the instructor our swimming proficiency. The test is relatively simple: wear the snorkelling set and swim about 50m to the shore. The Dive Centre is also where the resort assists guests in enrolling in scuba diving trips, snorkelling trips and even whale shark snorkelling trips. The Dive Centre also teaches guests scuba diving.
Sea Sports Centre
The sea sports centre is also on the main island, where guests can engage in various sea sports such as banana boat rides, jet skis and kayaks. Only kayaks are complimentary; motorised sea sports are chargeable. We tried to get a kayak on our fourth day at the resort. However, the current was so strong that the staff advised against kayaking.
There is a small fitness centre, also located on the main island of the resort. The 24-hour fitness centre is relatively small and basic, only equipped with treadmills and some free weights. However, the equipment will suffice for guests wanting cardio and strength workouts. Usage of the fitness centre requires guests to be in sports shoes.
Azzurro Restaurant & Bar
Azzurro Restaurant & Bar is the only eating establishment at the InOcean Villa cluster and is included in the all-inclusive package for guests staying in the InOcean villas. This is our go-to place mainly for breakfast and lunch due to its proximity to our InOcean villa. Breakfast was served in a buffet style that has minor menu changes daily. There are options catering to Western guests as well as Asian guests daily. Eggs are made ala minute, and drinks can be ordered from the restaurant staff. Lunch is a little more upscale in a typical menu-styled setting. The lunch menu is mainly Western, with a few items that are Maldivian. We had dinner on our last night at the resort. There is a small selection with more opulent options not covered under the all-inclusive package. The staff at Azzuro was happy to make some minor changes to the food we ordered. We could also pop by Azzurro anytime from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. for some beverages covered under the all-inclusive package. We could choose from an extensive menu of beverages ranging from hard liquours to cocktails to mocktails. Overall, I find the food quality at Azzuro is better than Kanni Restaurant on the main island.
Kaani Restaurant is located on the main island of the resort and serves mainly buffet options for all three meals. The all-inclusive meal options for beach villa guests on the main island are limited only to Kaani Restaurant. In contrast, InOcean Villa guests can dine at Kaani Restaurant on top of the Azzurro. We mostly had our dinners at Kaani Restaurant, which served up different theme dinner buffets daily. The themed buffets were merely small stations with food cooked ala minute according to the ingredients guests chose. There were also the main cooked food options, mainly Asian cuisines, served at the restaurant. Compared to Azzurro, the food quality at Kaani seems inferior; perhaps the food is mainly cooked in large batches. Nonetheless, the food at Kaani was still tasty, with daily menu changes to its cooked food section.
Kuredhi Pool Bar
Our all-inclusive dining package also included drinks at Kuredhi Pool Bar, where we could get the same drink options as those found at Azzurro. This is our go-to drinks bar after dinner while waiting for the scheduled boat back to the main island. Of all the mocktails (my go-to drinks besides Coke), I liked Angsana Cooler and Velavaru Beauty (the resort’s signature drinks) the most. There is also finger food served at the Kuredhi Pool Bar, but we did not try any food here as we were always full when we visited the bar.
We had an enjoyable time at Angsana Velavaru. The Deluxe InOcean Pool Villa was very well appointed, with a separate living room and a bathroom. I liked the extended pier-like structure in the villa that brought us closer to the end of the reef and is a great place to watch the sunset over the horizon. We also liked the abundance of marine life beneath our villa, which meant we did not have to swim too far into the ocean. The sleep quality on the king bed is excellent, restoring our energy and getting us ready for activities the next day. Service was impeccable, and the staff were amiable. They went all the way out to ensure we had an enjoyable stay. Ayaaz was a fantastic host, despite the resort not providing a personal butler, Ayaaz was like our personal butler and was always ready to answer our questions. Angsana Velavaru ticked all the boxes we wanted for our maiden trip to the Maldives. We were even considering returning to the resort the next time we visited Maldives.