Nika Island Resort & Spa, Maldives
Best Experience: Couples, Diving, House Reef Snorkeling, Value
Nika Island Resort & Spa is still Nika: unique, beautiful, stylish and private. People fall in love with Nika. They cannot forbid themselves to return here year after year, attracted by the irresistible beauty and individuality of the place. Nevertheless, despite all the charms, the resort will not necessarily attract all those who open the island.
Nika Island Resort & Spa is an Italians-run resort in North Ari Atoll with 43 huge garden villas, most of which have private beaches. The island’s two-hour time difference with the rest of the Maldives gives guests more time in the sun to take unforgettable selfies of the amazing house reef, enjoy a cocktail at one of the two beach bars or relax on the sun loungers overlooking the sea. The playground and family villas with two bedrooms make it ideal for those with children, and private beach villas with a jacuzzi, hammocks and a private stretch of soft sand make it a romantic choice. Meal options are flexible, and restaurant maintenance time is not. The resort has a spa, a PADI diving center, free Wi-Fi and many beautiful, wild greenery.
Designed by an Italian and owned by an Italian, during the first 20 years of the resort’s life, most of the guests were Italians. In recent years, Nika Island Resort was discovered by other nations who fell in love with it, but did not make it their own. The atmosphere is still Italian; Appearance - loose white and cotton fabrics with open necks showing a rich tan. One can even say with confidence that today Nika is cosmopolitan, but with Italian features.
Opened in 1984, Nika Island received its last renovation in 2011, although ongoing work is underway to maintain and improve the appearance of the hotel. Deciduous areas of the garden, with masses of landscaped and island plants feel more natural than other more well-groomed nearby islands. In addition to palm trees and mangrove trees, Nika Island Resort planted a some flowering and fruit trees and installed green trellises along the walkways. During a quick 15-minute walk around the island, you can find banana trees, passion fruit, pandanuses, orchid gardens, pink bougainvillea, banyan trees and water lily ponds. They even have a small, slightly abandoned reef fish pond with lobsters, striped reed fish and a school of active fish.
Snorkeling in Nika is excellent and easily accessible from any room. The lagoon is also perfect: crystal clear, sandy, not too shallow and not too deep. The beach is inevitably changing, but with the breakwaters there is a good beach in place, at least during low tide for each room, and some rooms overlook the very cool, fine sand.
The owner's gardening addiction is again visible in the model of fruit, vegetable and herbal beds. Fresh products fall on the dining table, where, as you know, the quality of ingredients is an integral part of Italian cuisine. And in this you have another reason to fall in love with Nika.
One sandy path draws an oval around the island's interior. It'll guide you through the garden of equatorial flowers and shrubs, shaded by the arches of white and purple bougainvillea and glowing red flowers of firewood, passing by the majestic banyan, which gives the resort its name. Gray herons nest in a banyan tree, and birds of paradise along with other birds admire travelers for their unusual trills. DOWNLOAD RESORT MAP
Nika's unique aspect is the level of privacy you can get when you want. Each villa on the beach is hidden in dense vegetation and has its own beach, defined on one of the sides. Breakwaters, sometimes large, will bother you more than others, and they really hint that you cannot walk freely around an island so generously endowed with nature: serene privacy mixed with sociability whenever you wish.
With one restaurant and a small number of guests, all with full board, the chef can prepare the perfect dishes for dinner, beautifully presented and served at your table of choice from the à la carte menu. With candles and the light of the moon, and the sounds of the lagoon flowing through the open arches, it can not be romantic.
Perhaps due to the true longstanding age of the resort, it tends to seem a bit dated, although it is immaculately clean in public areas and rooms. The atmosphere here is quite relaxed and generally private; Guests are mostly just couples or families with small children who are not against socialization. In an effort to give guests more time in the sun, the resort actually moved the time by two hours. While this can be confusing, guests seem to be easily customizable. The resort warmly welcomes every guest, straight from the deck, with a cool towel, a fresh fruit drink served in a coconut, and a small plate of fruit.
Nika Island Resort & Spa is located on Maayafushi Island in North Ari Atoll. The private island is a 30-minute seaplane (75km) from Malé airport. The Nika Maldives experience begins with a warm welcome at the arrival terminal by the resort host who accompanies guests to Nika lounge until the departure by sea plane for the scenic journey to the resort. Since high-speed boats are used only in emergency situations, seaplanes are the only way to get to Nika. Unlike some of the more remote islands, Nika is close enough to several of its neighbors that you can find on the ocean horizon.
Most of the rooms at Nika Island have their own beach areas, so only two small public beaches are located at opposite tips of the island. On all beaches, private or public, there are areas with soft white sand and slightly coarse sand, consisting of crushed shells and corals. Both public beaches have about 10 double deck chairs with strong wooden bases, thick soft cushions for relaxing, small tables and shady umbrellas. The first beach is located between the jetty and docks for water sports, in front of a cafe. This area has a beautiful shady area under a canopy of trees and is ideal for watching the sunset, while the second beach, located behind the Bepi restaurant and bar offers shade only under umbrellas. Hang out here if you want easy access to lunch, a playground or a potential meeting with baby reef sharks.
In total, Nika Island has 43 sea view rooms in seven categories. Although the resort advertises itself as the only island with private beaches for each villa (that's technically true), there are also several garden rooms (the most standard options) that are completely surrounded by dense vegetation and do not have their own beach areas, nevertheless guests in these rooms can use the public beach on the island without a hitch.
In the top category - Water Villas - technically there are also no private beaches, but the resort is doing everything possible to create them through private, sand-covered tanning beds, connected to the villas.
All other villas have direct access to their own generous stretches of sand, but complete with sun loungers, swings, hammocks and even small three-story huts with hydromassage baths.
Beach villas are divided into 2 categories that are identical in size and layout, but differ only in additional amenities and location. Their curved, shell design is still a unique pleasure, even if several of the best resorts have surpassed them in size. With 70 square meters, with a huge bathroom, wooden parquet flooring and a mixture of eclectic and homely furniture, these are rooms that still compete at the highest level. One Sultan Suite with 2 bedrooms and bathrooms (and 110 m2) is ideal for a family or group of friends.
The basic Garden Rooms do not have private beaches, as well as built-in stereos, and for family rooms of all types you will receive an extra bedroom and bathroom (as well as an outdoor shower in beach villas). The main difference between Deluxe Beach Villas and Beach Villas is the part of the island where they are located; meanwhile, the deluxe rooms have a bit more natural light.
10 new Water Villas feature the high style of resort life. The 3 conic thatched roofs cover the designer bathroom, the chic lounge and bedroom - it's Nika - to completely hide the large wooden deck for maximum privacy. The steps lead you to the ideal lagoon, where in the short swim from the villa you will find great snorkeling.
All rooms have a larger than usual layout, as well as high ceilings, air conditioning in the bedroom, a flat-screen TV with limited access, a minibar, tea and coffee, personal Internet networks, laptop safes, and beach towels. Bathrooms have hair dryers, fluffy bathrobes, large towels, soft slippers, rain shower, separate toilet and toiletries. The décor includes pieces of traditional dhoni boats, gigantic sea shells and soaps on mermaids. Many bathrooms are larger than typical apartments in modern condos, roughly the same size as the main living room in Beach and Deluxe Beach villas.
Like many resorts in the Maldives, there are no off-island dining options; But Nika Island offers a wide variety of food and drinks, including breakfast, half board (breakfast and dinner) and full board. Breakfast and lunch is a buffet, which is also very good, although some guests may not like the old school music.
Although there are limited menus in both hotel bars, Nika Island has only one full-service restaurant. Open at certain times for buffet breakfast and lunch, and à la carte dinner (with a good salad bar), with only several options for each dish, the restaurant is located near the second beach in the eastern part of the island. On comfortable tables, expect mainly Italian and international fare, including familiar meal, like omelets to order, fresh fruit, rice, curry, meat and fish, carpaccio and various salads. For each guest a personal place is fixed at the same table, and each meal is served by the same waiter.
There are also two 24-hour bars located on opposite ends of the islands, where guests can have a snack, drink wines (over 100 labels), cocktails and soft drinks. The Coffee Shop bar has indoor and outdoor tables and armchairs on the sand, and it serves an aperitif with small snacks and drinks. On the north side of the island next to the pier of the water villas, the Bepi Bar is more alcohol-packed and built on a large wooden deck above the water with a great view and a limited a-la-carte menu.
Snorkling & Diving
The diver base has been managed for many years by Rainer and Robert, who now fully understand the Nika's guests wishes. They provide individual PADI diving courses, and fun diving trips in small groups that customers especially appreciate.
Fortunately for snorkeling fans who do not feel good on boats, the resort is surrounded by its own house reef, so you can easily explore and admire the abundant marine life, including sharks, rays and turtles.
Things to Do
The evenings are usually very quiet, but during the day, in addition to scuba diving and snorkeling, Nika Diving Center also offers day trips to local villages and private islands for picnics, fishing and swimming with whale sharks and manta rays. They are all at very reasonable prices, which, I must say, applies to everything at the resort and is very welcome. Activities on the island include house reef snorkeling, water sports such as kayaking, and access to a small gym with a handful of cardio exercise machines and yoga mats.
Lotus Spa consists of separate overwater treatment bungalows, a beautiful pool with a small terrace and a living pond with lilies. Only spa guests can access the pool, and it is reasonable to note that there is no official dressing room, just a modest dressing room with three tiny lockers for valuable things.
Nika's long-term specialization is big game fishing. Ibrahim, a local, is considered the most skillful angler, and many guests come back here on purpose, because of great fishing.
Other amenities include a multilingual library, free doctor services on the island, a games room with board games, and a playground on the beach near the restaurant with slides and swings
Reviews of the Nika Island Resort are mostly positive, with the majority of guests being completely charmed by the small and simple island and the old-school Maldives vibe. Most quite liked the food, especially the lunches and dinners, and the house reef gets good reviews as well. Some complain, however, that the facilities are a bit aged and that it might not offer great value compared to other resorts in the Maldives. The breakfast doesn't seem to have many fans either. There are also a few who complain about the staff not being the best, but there are also those who say they are wonderful, making it a bit of a toss up.
... Exceptional, Heavenly, Breathtaking experience, The place helped us grew our love, Absolutely loved it, The best place to spend your time in Maldives!, Paradise would look something like this, Sheer luxury, Top resort would love to go back, An amazing location - the best option for total privacy in the Maldives, Five star stay with five star prices...
Why stay here? What Guests Love
- Beautiful nature
- Friendly and helpful staff
- Beautiful and large beachfront deluxe villa with private beach!
- Wonderful place for a quiet secluded relaxation, especially during the honeymoon
- Beautiful public beaches at opposite ends of the island
- Delicious cuisine
- Superb house reef; a huge variety of marine life from reef sharks and rays to turtles and manta
- A great fishing
- Wonderful diving
What You Need to Know
- Nika Island Resort & Spa, Maldives is located in North Ari Atoll and is 25-minutes by seaplane from Male airport
- Check-in from 14:00, Check-out until 12:00
- All children are welcome. Family-friendly features include family-style rooms and a playground
- Room design and decor can be slightly dated and simple
- On-site PADI-certified dive center with Nitrox, bungalow spa with a pool, and boutique round out facilities
- Restaurant has short, designated meal times and assigned seating
- Rooms can be buggy
- Gym is small and a bit dated for this level of luxury
- Free Wi-Fi in public areas and personal in-room connection
- Island-elected two-hour time difference maximizes sunlight hours
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