Author Topic: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi  (Read 5655 times)

Offline Dan

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #30 on: October 29, 2020, 11:59:03 AM »
Thank you! I plan on finishing my long overdue STR TR in the next couple days to further help anyone whoís in between the two get a better picture of what each offers... at least from my perspective.
Awesome
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Offline Wizmanison

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #31 on: October 29, 2020, 12:07:06 PM »
Trying to add the infant to the new flight and just spent over two hours and 4 HUCAís later with my spotty WiFi calling connection 
trying to convince Qatar that they do in fact book infant tickets on AA awards and AA canít do anything on their end. Not so surprisingly it didnít work even after showing them my last 3 reservations that all have Infant tickets. All of which were booked with AA! Checking out for the night and will try again tomorrow but looks like itís going to cost $500 :/

Offline Dan

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #32 on: October 29, 2020, 12:12:41 PM »
$500 is pretty normal for a lap child in J on a OW ticket.
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Offline Wizmanison

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #33 on: October 29, 2020, 12:20:22 PM »
$500 is pretty normal for a lap child in J on a OW ticket.
I guess Iím just spoiled by getting the outbound flight for $270. (Or $110 if the dispute/complaint works out in my favor)

Offline CS1

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #34 on: November 21, 2020, 11:58:38 PM »


DAY 2
I guess with all the time difference we woke up at around 4am, mostly because the baby wouldnít go back to sleep, and since the sun wasnít out yet we just hung out outside. At 6:30 breakfast opens up, complimentary for gold & diamond members, so we took our bikes and headed there. This is around when the sun starts to rise so it was a beautiful bike ride and the breakfast area, named the Tasting Place was beautiful. There was only one other couple there. The views were beautiful and it was right on the beach with a choice of indoor or outdoor dining. The buffet was in a separate room and seems to be the only place in the hotel that they require you to wear a mask when entering. When we asked about the kosher options they said that they have separate pots and pans, cutlery, and plates for kosher guests since they get so many and offered to make eggs and such.

Some things I forgot to mention or include yesterday was some pics of the stroller and highchair they offer as well as the fact that they donít have or offer a printed map of the resort so I would recommend you bring your own as its a big place. Also going to include the floor plan of the OWB and the kids program schedule:


Looks great here.
Excellent photos.

Was your private pool (at your OWB) heated?
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Offline tavster

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #35 on: November 24, 2020, 04:04:20 AM »
Thank you! I plan on finishing my long overdue STR TR in the next couple days to further help anyone whoís in between the two get a better picture of what each offers... at least from my perspective.
Any final thoughts on WAI vs STR?

Offline myb821

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #36 on: November 24, 2020, 12:57:34 PM »
Looks great here.
Excellent photos.

Was your private pool (at your OWB) heated?
I do not believe so but it was very comfortable when I was there in October.

Offline Wizmanison

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #37 on: November 24, 2020, 01:06:23 PM »
Looks great here.
Excellent photos.

Was your private pool (at your OWB) heated?
Not heated but never felt it was cold or a problem to go swimming. Even at night!

Offline Wizmanison

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #38 on: November 24, 2020, 01:07:29 PM »
Any final thoughts on WAI vs STR?
Short answer: WAI over STR any day of the week. Long answer coming in my next update ( hopefully by Friday). Have it all written out just need to make time to link the pictures :)

Offline theduke

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #39 on: November 26, 2020, 10:15:36 AM »
WOW!
I would never even leave the room!

Offline myb821

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #40 on: November 27, 2020, 10:56:16 AM »
WOW!
I would never even leave the room!
In the 6 days I spent there, we barely left the room.

Offline Wizmanison

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #41 on: November 29, 2020, 05:54:49 PM »
Day 3

After spending the night trying to get Qatar to ticket an infant ticket unsuccessfully, I called it a night. We woke up early again since thereís not much to do at night here and every minute of the sun out here is amazing. I sent out my drone as the sun was rising and here are the pictures/videos of the resort:

























And here are some of the room and water:

















And here is one of those cool drone videos:

https://imgur.com/JZt7Ens

Or in GIF form (for some reason they upload in really bad quality):



And a video of the Sunrise:



After that it drizzled for like less than 5 minutes and then a rainbow appeared.






The weather was amazing today with pretty much clear skies and really hot. We headed to breakfast and saw this amazing view once again.












The chef today offered us options of kosher cereal to chose from that had an OU hechser which was nice of him. After that we biked around a bit with the baby and then went back to the villa to swim and snorkel. We saw again from the villa the nurse shark swimming by but by the time I would have got ready to jump in it was too late :/





Besides for that didnít see anything else that interesting. Here are some more GoPro pics and a video that shows how clear the water is, the beautiful sand, and a school of fish:


















Getting prepared for lunch and shabbat I went to the kitchen dining area and asked if I could take some stuff out my freezer bag. They asked me to wait 10 minutes while they have the bag brought here from their big freezer that was located elsewhere. As I was taking out several meals for the next 2 days the chef seemed perplexed as to how I intended on eating these frozen meals. Saying that usually his guests ask him to heat it in his oven. I gave him some vague answer that we would be fine and were used to it and went back to heat up some lunch!

Tried giving QR another try but their US call center was closed. Luckily I brought my Pixel 3XL from that deal around 2 years ago. I resumed my long paused service and made a wifi call to the India call center for .01 cent a minute. After 40 minutes there didnít seem to be much success. They told me they would have to reach back out to me latest by Sunday to try to get approval to book this infant ticket. Escalating to a supervisor didnít do much either so I guess Iíll call back again motzei shabbat.

After that sent the drone out again to get some pics of the villa and some family pics and after like 20 minutes I got a call from our butler, Ella, that drones are not permitted at the villa.

We brought in a beautiful Shabbat and heated our food for Friday night and Saturday before Shabbat came in so as to not leave the toaster oven on all of Shabbat for safety concerns.




Offline Wizmanison

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #42 on: November 29, 2020, 05:56:01 PM »
Day 4 Shabbat:

(No pictures for this update since it was shabbat)

We woke up to another amazing day with great weather. For Saturday lunch we heated it up before Shabbat came in to defrost and then kept it in the fridge till Saturday morning where we left it out in the sun for a couple hours. Surprisingly, when it came time to eat. The food was actually warm!

From our villa in the morning we saw two turtles. And then later in the day a couple that was snorkeling by our villa said they just saw a massive shark right in front of our villa where the reef ends. So while I got stuck staying with the baby :( my wife jumped in and saw a baby shark really close to her and the big fully grown shark in the distance. She got scared and rushed back. By the time I went out to get a look it swam away :(. However, I continued snorkeling but as it happens to be that on the day we donít have a go pro we see an abundance of colorful and stunning fish! We will be going back tomorrow to get some pics though.

 If I hadnít mentioned it earlier they actually provide, like most of these hotels, complimentary snorkeling gear rentals and they are some pretty good equipment.

It was only today that I realized that although I initially thought the snorkeling was lacking compared to the SR. Since I remember the corals being less bleached and more fish life near the villa, that for the WA if you just venture out like another minute from your villa to the end of the reef there is a lot of beautiful fish. I also donít recall ever seeing a shark or turtles from the SR so as of now it seems the WA is superior in that respect as well. Leaving the SR with not much else...

I did also notice that the butler service at the SR VS the ďhostĒ service at the WA is not comparable. Maybe I just landed on a mediocre host but I recall my butler at the SR always checking in on us and sending us fruit bowls. Whereas at the WA unless I WhatsApp my butler she doesnít really offer anything or checkin. I had to ask for the snorkeling gear and we were never really given a proper tour of the place or anything like that. Not saying itís necessarily bad service but in comparison to the SR I would say itís lacking. The host here, when I do reach out, is very responsive and kind so no complaints about bad service.

Besides for that we just chilled most of the day. Took the baby to the kids program to play with the toys and enjoyed the villa.
 
I have to say the hotel in general seems really busy and more than just 50% occupied. Iíve noticed that at breakfast, kids club, and at other places the hotel is seems pretty full with rarely any open tables.


After shabbat, I tried again to speak to QR to book infant award and was able to finally book it with ease! I think the key is calling at a good time to get the Doha Call center to pick up rather than the India call center. Or, if Florida call center opens back up that should work as well.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2020, 06:00:03 PM by Wizmanison »

Offline tavster

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #43 on: November 30, 2020, 12:03:00 AM »
Stunning pictures / videos

Offline sam28

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Re: Maldives Round 2 - Waldorf Astoria Ithaafushi
« Reply #44 on: November 30, 2020, 01:32:13 PM »
wow amazing write up and pictures keep it coming . did u take along the toaster oven all the way ?