Meeru is one of the larger resorts in the Maldives, but in our view, it also offers some of the best value around. This mid-priced resort wears its size well and manages to provide an excellent range of facilities in a relaxing atmosphere. A resort once neatly characterised as “more barefoot than bling”, it offers gleaming white sands and a chilled-out atmosphere encouraged by staff who are amiable yet discreet. Particularly impressive is how it seeks to delight all its guests, young and old, as it offers specific areas as adults-only and others that are ideal for families with children. Accommodation is dotted around an island that is big enough to handle the demands with ease, measuring in at around 60 hectares (105 acres). Classic offerings such as waterside restaurants, watersports and white-sand beaches are supported by rarely-seen extras such as a nine-hole pitch and putt golf course and a whale bone museum.
All rooms have: A/c, king-size bed, bathrooms with rainshower and toiletries, wi-fi, ceiling fan, tea/coffee facilities, hairdryer, private porch, minibar, flat-screen IPTV television, personal safe.
Garden Rooms (50 sq m): This u-shaped block of 20 rooms is nestled in the middle of the island near the Dhoni bar and is surrounded by tropical palm trees. Rooms are brightly furnished with practical modern furnishings.
Beach Villas (56 sq m): These individual wooden Beach Villas have bright interiors and a charming Maldives feel. Step directly onto the exclusive beach with attractive views of the island lagoon. Welcome the warm ocean breeze while relaxing on the terrace or on your beach sun lounger.
Two-bedroom Beach Villas (86 sq m): These well-appointed, contemporary rooms are great for a family or friends travelling together and sleep up to five, including at least one child. Located along the beachfront and close to all the island’s most active facilities. Mix of king-sized and twin beds and a partially-open bathroom.
Jacuzzi Beach Villas (80 sq m): Jacuzzi Beach Villas have an attractive and private, walled-in outdoor area featuring a Jacuzzi for two “under the stars”. Sleep up to three adults.
Water Front Villas (60 sq m): These pretty water front villas lie, as they suggest, at the water’s edge, with a private, walled-in outdoor area featuring a Jacuzzi for two. Separated from neighbouring villas by attractive foliage.
Jacuzzi Water Villas (86 sq m): These iconic Maldives villas are built over the water in the lagoon and have their own secluded sun deck overlooking the turquoise water. Only a short walk along your private jetty takes you to your own private jacuzzi. Sleep up to three adults.
Typically for the larger islands, you’ll be allocated a main buffet restaurant for meals, depending on your room type and location. Farivalhu is for guests staying at the southern end of the island, and Maalan is at the northern end of the island which is quieter with more expensive room categories. Both deal in traditional buffets with live cooking stations and indoor and outdoor dining areas. Adults-only facilities include one of the main restaurants, a bar, and one of the two pools.
Sundowners at the overwater Asian Wok restaurant are a highlight – sit on colourful cushions on the edge of the decking and watch the reef sharks playing below. At the Hot Rock restaurant, seafood and meats are cooked at your table on sizzling volcanic rocks, as well as offerings such as pizza and burgers.
The popular, beachside Dhoni Bar is 24 hours and offers the chance to watch live sport. It is one of six bars scattered over the island, including the adults-only Pavilion Bar and Uthuru Bar which offers table tennis, snooker, a football table, darts and board games. The Meeru Café majors on ice-cream and pastries as well as speciality teas and coffees.
There are two pools: the infinity pool is reserved for adults to ensure a peaceful atmosphere and another pool is by the beach and also includes a children’s pool. The Komas Kids' Club has separate facilities for children aged 3-12 and teens aged 13-17.
There are two Duniye spas, one on the island and the other over the ocean. Gold enthusiasts can try a nine-hole pitch and putt course. Have a go at windsurfing, kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding. Also a gymnasium.
The Euro Divers dive centre offers a range of PADI-approved courses and trips for snorkellers and divers; the house reef is not on site but is reached by boat. Weekly excursion programmes include island hops, submarine sightseeing and sunset cruises. There are Karaoke nights, old-school discos, movie nights, cultural dances and local bands. There is also buggy transport and laundry facilities. Sustainability commitments include a coral nursery which grows coral to repair damaged areas of the reef.
Why we like it
This chilled-out resort is reached by a speedboat transfer of just under an hour – a perfect distance to feel like an added attraction rather than a bit of a bind.
Meeru Island Resort is the sole resort on the island of Meerufenfushi on North Male' Atoll. Your speedboat transfer from Velana International Airport is a scenic, 55-minute ride.
Location: Meerufenfushi, North Male' Atoll
Style: Contemporary mid-range resort
No. of Rooms: 284
Key Features: Large resort; speedboat transfer; pitch-and-putt golf course; whalebone museum