Soneva Fushi' Pioneering VR Experience point to the Future of Travel

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13 August, 2021

Soneva Fushi has announced the launch of an exclusive new Virtual Reality (VR) experience.

At a time when many around the world are unable to travel due to the ongoing limitations and lockdowns of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Soneva VR headset overcomes restrictions to bring an enchanting insight into island life into viewers’ homes.

A curated experience with discovery at its heart, the VR series shares Soneva’s SLOW LIFE ethos and champions the beautiful Maldives archipelago as a bucket-list destination.

To achieve this, the Soneva team partnered with a UK-based studio to create a best-in-class, personalized VR content series that showcases Soneva Fushi’s one-of-a-kind charms to a global audience.

The unique video series focuses on a number of key areas, which include: 

25 Years of Soneva: celebrating the brand’s storied history and its journey to becoming a world-leading destination, with rare experiences and a dedication to social and environmental sustainability at its core. 

Soneva Fushi Water Retreats: launched recently, these stunning new retreats are the largest and most luxurious one- and two-bedroom over-water villas in the world, offering an unsurpassed over-water experience to guests, and further expanding the resort’s award-winning villa portfolio. 

Soneva in Aqua: an ultra-luxurious 23-metre yacht that sails from Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani. It combines Soneva’s renowned hospitality with the freedom of a personalised charter across the Indian Ocean. 

The Den: a playground for the imagination and the region’s largest children’s zone. The Den’s playful spaces include a pirate ship, Lego rooms, music studio and more. 

Family Villas: a focus on the largest villas at Soneva Fushi, which offer an exceptional amount of space, privacy and luxury for multi-generational families, groups of friends or corporate gatherings. The largest, the 3,048 sqm Private Reserve, has nine bedrooms with room for up to 14 adults and nine children, and features a private pool, gym, sauna and staff quarters. 

The Complete Resort Tour: this tour offers a comprehensive journey of discovery around Soneva Fushi’s island home, Kunfunadhoo, taking in dining destinations, the observatory, the organic gardens, picture-perfect sandy beaches and the lush tropical jungle along the way. 

To see all this video series go here

“With many international travellers restricted from visiting the Maldives in person during the pandemic, it felt imperative to create new ways of engaging with audiences that extended above and beyond Soneva’s popular social media channels and consumer newsletters. Technology in tourism has increased rapidly over the last decade, and this became an exciting opportunity for us to modernise beyond on-property considerations. The visual nature of Virtual Reality is a natural fit for supporting Soneva Fushi’s continued mission to connect with guests and to tell the resort’s vibrant story in new ways,” said Soneva’s CEO and founder, Sonu Shivdasani. 

Renowned as a pioneer in the hospitality sector, Soneva has achieved a raft of industry firsts since the launch of Soneva Fushi in 1995: banning plastics across its resorts, developing Eco Centro waste-to-wealth facilities, and operating the Maldives’ first and only villa ownership scheme, to name but a few. 

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Soneva in The Maldives

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World-leading luxury resort operator Soneva runs two resorts in the Maldives, Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani.

In 1995, the award-winning luxury resort Soneva Fushi set the standard for all desert island barefoot luxury hideaways in the Maldives. Located in the Baa Atoll UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Soneva Fushi pairs Robinson Crusoe fantasy with intelligent luxury. If the experiences are magical, the philosophy is simple: No news, no shoes. No pretensions either.

Sixty-two private villas with their own stretch of beach are hidden among dense foliage within touching distance of a pristine coral reef. Intuitive service is provided by Mr./Ms. Friday butlers.

Highlights include the open-air Cinema Paradiso, counting Saturn’s rings in the high-tech Observatory, the home-made chocolate and ice cream rooms, five hundred wines to choose from, six different restaurants and countless destination dining options. In November 2015, Soneva launched a floating villa concept, Soneva in Aqua, a treasure trove children’s Den and a multi-purpose facility encompasses a glass gallery, boutique and studio where guests can learn the art of glass blowing. READ FULL REVIEW

The perfect combination of luxury and nature, Soneva Jani offers guests an unparalleled experience in idyllic surroundings. Opened in December 2016, Soneva Jani is Soneva’s newest property and the world-leading luxury hotel group’s second resort in the Maldives. This resort doesn't just have character, it has charisma. Soneva Jani is like someone with personal magnetism, someone who knows themself, knows the world and greets it with a big, welcoming smile.

Meaning ‘wisdom’ in Sanskrit, Soneva Jani currently comprises 24 overwater villas and one island villa. Each of the 24 water villas is superbly designed and has a private pool that looks out onto its own lagoon site, and some villas are equipped with water slides from the sun deck down to the lagoon. Feature of the villas is a retractable roof in the main bedroom, which is retracted at the touch of a button so guests can lie in bed and count the stars. Five islands encircle the lagoon, each one with soft white sands and covered in rich tropical vegetation. Four of the five islands will remain untouched, making Soneva Jani the lowest density development in the Maldives. The overwater villas are spaced across the expansive lagoon, offering privacy and extensive views over the Maldives’ turquoise waters. The island villas will be tucked into the lush greenery, providing the ultimate privacy, and all within steps of the beach.

Soneva Jani’s main guest facilities are located at The Gathering, the heart of the overwater villas. This dramatic three story structure is home to the main dining outlets, in addition to the Soneva Spa, library, retail area and wine cellar. It is located next to the Maldives’ first overwater Observatory.

The luxury resort is located on the island of Medhufaru within a 5.6 kilometre lagoon in the Noonu atoll, and has uninterrupted ocean views in all directions. The lagoon is 35 minutes by seaplane from Malé International Airport and one hour by speedboat from Soneva Fushi. Facilities on the island include the overwater Cinema Paradiso, the Eco Centro Waste-to-Wealth centre, organic gardens, tennis courts, water sports champa and Zuhair’s Beach on a desert island in the lagoon. READ FULL REVIEW

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