Full Disclosure: We have partnered with UpgradedPoints.com to make recommendations on our favorite credit cards, including travel rewards credit cards. See our full Advertiser Disclosure here.

Blessed with stunning beaches, remarkable marine life, and fascinating natural scenery, the Maldives has everything you need for an unforgettable luxury vacation.

Ready to experience this promising island paradise? Two remote luxury resorts to consider for your trip are The Ritz-Carlton Maldives and Waldorf Astoria Maldives. And if you’re looking to spend your points, these two are part of the Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors programs, respectively.

Find out which 5-star resort fits you in this The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands vs. Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi comparison.

Learn more about our points consulting services!

Quick Glance: The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands vs Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi

  The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi
Location Fari Islands North Malé Atoll Male, Maldives Ithaafushi Island, South Malé Atoll, Maldives
Getting There Requires a 10-minute seaplane transfer from Velana International Airport (MLE). Another option is the 60-minute speedboat or private yacht transfer. The resort can arrange these transfers for a fee. Requires a 40-minute transfer via private yacht from Velana International Airport (MLE). Transfers are arranged by the resort for a fee.
Room 100 Beach/Pool Villas and Overwater Villas 122 Reef, Beach, Overwater and Ocean Villas, 1 Private Island 
Amenities Pool, Beach Access, Spa, Salon, Fitness Center, Kids Club, Tennis Court, Dive Center, Art Gallery  Pool, Beach Access, Fitness Center, Kid’s Club, Spa, Tennis Court, Water Park
Food and Dining 7 Restaurants and Bars 10 Restaurants and Bars
Staff and Guest Services Excellent! A personal butler (or Aris Meeha) is assigned to all guests. Welcoming and attentive! Guests are assigned a personal butler from the moment they arrive.
Price  Cash rates start at $1,500 to $4,410 per night, depending on the season. The average rate is $2,470. Cash rates start at $2,670 to $5,260 per night. Average rate is $3,800.
Points Redemption For a standard villa, you can use 70,000 to 120,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night.  Use at least 150,000 Hilton Honors points per night for a standard reef villa.

The Details: The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands vs Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands. Image Credit: The Ritz-Carlton

Promising adventure and relaxation in a tranquil setting, The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands is a luxury resort you won’t regret experiencing.


Found in Fari Islands, this four-island manmade archipelago is known for sporting gorgeous white sands and an abundance of marine life in its azure waters.

This luxurious property is the second one to open in this set of islands yet The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Island’s distinctive minimalist architecture (courtesy of Kerry Hill Architects) stands out with its unique circular design and future-forward concept. 

To reach the island, guests have the option to take a shared speedboat or go for a leisurely private yacht transfer. Both of which take approximately 60-minutes.

For those who want to fly, there’s a shared and private seaplane transfer option. It’s about 10-minutes one way. All these can be arranged with the resort for an additional fee. 


The Ocean, Lagoon, or Beach Pool Villa is outfitted with a king-size bed with Frette linens, a flat-screen LCD TV with premium channels and streaming services, BOSE audio speaker, and complimentary Wi-Fi. The panoramic views range from ocean, lagoon, and beach.

The airy bathroom has a separate tub and shower with glass doors and an oversized marble soaking tub. Luxurious Bamford bathroom amenities are also included. Step outside and admire the marvelous scenery of the Maldives in your infinity pool and sun deck.

Enjoy complimentary snacks, coffee, non-alcoholic drinks, tea, and water. Bicycles are available for guests to move around.

If you prefer direct beach access, stay in the Beach Pool Villa. Enjoy a breathtaking sunset view at the Sunset Beach Pool Villa, while the Two-Bedroom Water and Beach Pool Villa and beachfront Sunset Two Bedroom Beach Pool Villa come with an additional room and bigger outdoor living space.

The Ritz-Carlton Estate is the priciest choice in the resort. Luxurious facilities include a spacious outdoor pool, a private spa room, and a kitchen. Outside, enjoy exclusive access to the cove and beach. The services of a personal chef are also available.


Embrace the best tropical living at the gorgeous outdoor infinity pool and private beach area.

A fan of the water? You’ll love the myriad water activities: standup paddleboarding, kayaking, surfing, etc.

Pamper yourself with island-inspired treatments at the ring-shaped The Ritz-Carlton Spa with full-body treatments (massages and body wrap included), facials, and more. Head to the salon area if you need a mani/pedi or a hairstyling session.

Jazz up playtime for your kids (age 4-12) and give them a fun-filled day at The Ritz Kids. Here, they’ll enjoy plenty of exciting activities such as video games, arts and crafts, and cooking classes. The little ones will marvel at the futuristic area that’s complete with napping pods and a pool with slides.

No Maldives vacation is complete without an ocean adventure. There are plenty of watersports and underwater activities at the dive center. Private boats are available for island-hopping adventures.

Diving enthusiasts will surely enjoy the thriving marine life in The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands— it even made it to our top diving resorts in the world you can book using points.

Learn about the resort’s sustainability initiatives with Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ambassadors of the Environment program.

Break a sweat at the yoga studio and 24-hour fitness center, complete with modern equipment. Other facilities include a sauna and steam room. 

Photography enthusiasts can learn more about the craft at the in-house photography studio Shutterfish. Art lovers will delight in The Art Collection, where local and international artworks are found.

For those who want to explore further, head to Fari Marina Village to enjoy more dining, shopping, and entertainment spots.

Nugget of Advice:

An experienced points consultant can help you get the highest credit card bonuses, including those that are not publicly available!

Food and Dining

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands Beach Shack

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands Beach Shack. Image Credit: The Ritz-Carlton

The resort’s in-house dining options explore global flavors. Savor modern Cantonese fare at the Summer Pavilion. Order your favorite Japanese dishes with impressive choices of sake at Iwau.

Sample healthy food and cocktails at the beachfront Eau Bar. Enjoy family-style Mediterranean dishes with live music at the Beach Shack. Spend a relaxing afternoon with coffee, tea, and light fare at La Locanda or the resort’s “living room” with a library.

Arrange an unforgettable private dinner at the beachside or Banyan Tree for special occasions.

Nugget of Advice:

The best travel credit cards are your best ticket to not flying coach again. You don’t have to pay for luxury stays again by maximizing your credit card rewards!

Staff and Guest Services

The resort prides itself on its distinguished butler service. Enjoy personalized, world-class service thanks to the professional staff. Overnight rates include nightly turndown services with complimentary pressing for eight garments. 


Cash rates start at $1,500 to $4,410 per night for a standard villa, with the average rate being $2,470 per night.

Points Redemption

You can redeem using your Marriott Bonvoy points. Exchanges start at 80,000 to 120,000 points per night.

Nugget of Advice:

Save precious time planning your points and travel when you enroll in The Points University. The best part? You can learn at your own pace!

Who Is It For?

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands is perfect for couples and families seeking remote luxury in the Maldives. It stands out for many reasons—the world-class service, airy overwater villas, upscale amenities, and impressive scenery, to name a few. 

Thanks to The Ritz Kids, the resort is spacious enough to accommodate families and their little ones. On the other hand, couples will enjoy the gorgeous spa, watersports adventures, and in-house restaurants as well.

Make a reservation

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands Gallery

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands - The Ritz Carlton Spa

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands – The Ritz Carlton Spa. Image Credit: Hilton

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands - Ocean Pool Villa

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands Ocean Pool Villa. Image Credit: Hilton

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands La Locanda Lawn

The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands La Locanda Restaurant. Image Credit: Hilton

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi. Image Credit: Hilton

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi is a stunning destination with pristine beaches, upscale amenities, and gorgeous villa pools.


This luxury resort is located at South Malé Atoll in the Maldives. It’s composed of three islands. One island, Ithaafushi, is even bookable for a group of 24 – promising the ultimate private island getaway!

The resort is easily accessible from Velana International Airport (MLE). Because of this proximity, guests can forego the traditional seaplane ride and instead opt for a luxury 40-minute yacht transfer where they’re spoiled with luxury accommodations, overflowing champagne, and delicious pastries. 


The villa collection is divided into three types, based on its location: the Reef Villas, Beach Villas, and Overwater Villas.

The Reef Villas is a hybrid of a garden and overwater setting, while the Beach Villas give you direct access to the resort’s pristine white sand beaches. Meanwhile, the Overwater Villas offer uninterrupted views of the calming Indian Ocean and are in proximity to the reefs. It’s just a dive away!

The spacious villas at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi are gloriously outfitted with custom furniture, high ceilings, and a private pool.

The standard property is the impressive 3,002-square-feet King Reef Villa. Its gorgeous, well-appointed accommodations offer cocoon-like comforts: an ultra-comfortable king-sized bed, an HD flat-screen TV with a Chromecast, an iPad, an alarm clock, a stocked mini-fridge with beverages, an electric kettle, a coffeemaker, and a complete set of utensils. Complimentary Wi-Fi is offered to guests as well.

Enter the spacious spa bathroom with double vanities, a gorgeous deep-soaking tub with amazing views, and Tuscan Soul by Salvatore Ferragamo toiletries and bathroom amenities.

Luxurious outdoor facilities include a private outdoor pool and an overwater thatched-roof gazebo terrace that’s furnished with a generous seating area, a daybed, and a swinging double bed to enjoy the mesmerizing ocean views.

There are also a pair of sun loungers and hammocks where you can relax closer to the water. An outdoor shower surrounded by lush greenery is also available for a quick rinse after your dip.

For a more comprehensive review, check out our Complete Review of Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi [250+ Pictures]!

For ultimate luxury, the Stella Maris Ocean Villa is the top choice. It’s only accessible by private boat with spacious indoor and outdoor living areas and direct ocean access.


Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi comprises three islands, so there’s plenty of space and amenities to enjoy.

There’s a fitness center complete with exercise machines and free weights for those who want to keep up their active lifestyle. Guests can also avail themselves of the private lessons and personal trainers.

There’s also an outdoor tennis court where you can play tennis or padel tennis with the resident pro. Or, practice yoga at the outdoor yoga deck as well.

Indulge in luxurious spa treatments at the captivating Waldorf Astoria Spa. It has 10 treatment rooms, and 2 of them are located above the water. A Wellness Concierge is available to help you choose the right treatments based on your preferences.

The Aqua Wellness Center is a multi-zone area with hydrotherapy sessions and plenty of sundecks. They have a hydrotherapy pool with different zones with stations targeting separate parts of your body.

Book an aqua therapy session where you can experience a series of shower jets, air jets, and a jet bath that uses different intensity levels and water temperatures to ease tension and increase blood circulation in your body.

The resort is blessed with white, powdery sand lined with cabanas by the water. Otherwise, there’s always the adults-only infinity pool and kids’ pool for the little ones.

While in the Maldives, snorkeling or diving is an absolute must. This Waldorf Astoria property is also considered one of the best diving resorts in the world you can book with points. There is an accredited dive center that can help with your PADI certification courses. Prefer snorkeling instead? You can do so around the resort with their complimentary gear.

Have your little ones check out the dedicated kids club called Stars Club, where fun recreational activities await. It even has an indoor theme park! Older kids and young teens can hang out in the Club Nova Teens Club.

Food and Dining

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi The Tasting Table

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi The Tasting Table. Image Credit: Hilton

The Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi is home to more than 10 restaurants and bars that offer diverse gastronomic experiences. 

Dig in buffet-style with breakfast, Asian, and Mediterranean dishes at The Tasting Table. For casual fare, head to Nava and enjoy fantastic beach views with your favorite drinks.

The Peacock Alley also serves light fare and cocktails. Amber is a fantastic place to enjoy cocktails during sunset watching.

If you’re feeling healthy, Glow serves garden-to-table dishes. For Asian cuisine, head to Li Long while Zuma serves contemporary Japanese. Enjoy steaks, seafood, and barbecue at The Ledge by Dave Pynt.

Staff and Guest Services

Expect the service at the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithuaafushi to always be first-class and personalized.

The butlers are a highlight and play a significant role in making your stay with this 5-star resort a worthwhile one. Your assigned butler will be attentive to your requests and concerns, but they also take the initiative to help with your reservations or bookings. They’ll even decorate your bed!


Cash rates start at $2,500 to $5,260 per night for a standard room. The average season rate is $3,800 per night. 

Points Redemption

Yes, you can book a reward stay here using your Hilton points. A standard overwater villa means spending at least 150,000 Hilton Honors points per night.

Who Is It For?

The Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi is an all-around luxury retreat that appeals to families and couples alike. With its well-rounded amenities and facilities, families can enjoy quality time together. Parents can also relish private time thanks to the resort’s kids and teen clubs.

On the other hand, couples will enjoy this picture-perfect tropical setting for their next romantic adventure. We recommend it if you’re planning to celebrate momentous occasions, especially since it’s one of the best honeymoon resorts you can book with points.

Make a reservation

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi Gallery

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi - Yasmeen Restaurant

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi – Yasmeen Restaurant. Image Credit: Waldorf Astoria

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi King Reef Pool Villa

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi King Reef Pool Villa. Image Credit: Hilton

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi kids pool

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi Kids Pool. Image Credit: AuPACS

Best For: Which Resort Should You Go For?

  Winner What Makes It Great
Best for Convenience Tie Guests can choose the fast but costly seaplane transfer or the cheaper speedboat transfer at The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands. While Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi only has the yacht transfer, which is pricey, but a guaranteed luxurious experience.
Best for Food Tie The Waldorf Astoria property has 10+ restaurants and bars, while The Ritz-Carlton is in proximity to Fari Marina Village.
Best for Pools Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi Aside from private pools in each accommodation, the resort has separate adults-only and kids pools.
Best for Spa Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi Waldorf Astoria Spa’s unique Aqua Wellness Center is a bonus. It also has more treatment rooms.
Best for Beaches Tie Both resorts have long stretches of pristine beaches complete with cabanas.
Best For Adults Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi The resort is considered to be one of the best honeymoon resorts, so it’s ideal for adults.
Best for Families Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi While both have extensive, tailored programs for kids, the resort also has one for teens.
Best Location Tie Both resorts are the cream of the crop in the Maldives.
Best for a Calm Vacation Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi The resort spans three islands, ensuring utmost privacy for guests.
Best for Diving or Snorkeling Tie Both resorts are known to offer fantastic diving and snorkeling experiences.
Best for Service Tie Both resorts offer unrivaled, world-class hospitality with their personalized butler service.
Most Secluded The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands The Ritz-Carlton is located further away from other resorts.

Wrapping Up

The Maldives is truly a dream destination. It’s where you can leave your troubles behind, and escape to a sun-kissed beach lavished with fine white sand and turquoise waters.

The great thing about these two luxury resorts is they offer outstanding hospitality through their personalized butler service. Well-trained and professional, they will make sure you will enjoy your trip from start to finish.

If water adventure is what you’re after, you’ll be glad to know both resorts are also renowned for their diving spots.

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi is the more expensive option out of the two, but it’s worth your time and experience. If in-house dining options are a priority for you, this resort is ideal. The standard overwater villa is already spacious and luxurious, to begin with, so you’ll still feel pampered even if you choose to stay in it.

The resort also appeals to families with its extensive kids and teens programs. At the same time, it’s also one of the top honeymoon resorts in the world.

If Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi’s steep prices are out of your budget, The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands will not disappoint. The resort also offers an overwater villa for their standard room furnished with everything you need for a relaxing stay. It has a luxurious spa, pristine beaches, and top-end amenities to enjoy as well.

Whether for a romantic retreat with a special someone or a fun family trip, The Ritz-Carlton Maldives, Fari Islands, and the Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi make fantastic choices. The great news is you can book with points at both resorts.

Safe travels!

Full Disclosure:
Advertiser Disclosure: We’ve partnered with UpgradedPoints.com to help make the best recommendations on our favorite credit cards. We may receive a referral bonus from card issuers if you apply for cards through these links. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers.
Editorial Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Any offers mentioned above are accurate at the time of publication but are subject to change at any time and may have changed, or may no longer be available.
Featured Image Credit: The Ritz-Carlton

 Frequently Asked Questions

The resort is 100% owned by Marriott International, Inc.

The resort first opened on June 1, 2021.

The Fari islands are made up of four islands on North Malé Atoll.

The resort is owned by Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc. It is the company’s second property in the Maldives.

Waldorf Astoria Maldives Ithaafushi welcomed its first guests on July 1, 2019. The luxury resort aims to set a new standard of luxury in the Maldives.