S Hotels and Resorts PCL, the global hospitality company from Singha Estate PCL, has announced that SO/ Maldives – the third resort at CROSSROADS Maldives, the world-class integrated leisure destination which comprises nine idyllic islands in the Indian Ocean – will open its doors in November 2023, marking the start of a new era of fashion-led five-star hospitality in this idyllic archipelago.
S Hotels & Resorts is the owner of this USD 60 million joint venture project, which is being developed in partnership with Wai Eco World Developer (WEWD), the leading business and real estate conglomerate. The ultra-fashionable SO/ Hotels & Resorts brand will be introduced to the Maldives for the very first time, and the resort will form part of the Ennismore Collection, a curated global collective of lifestyle brands, which has been named as one of the “World’s Most Innovative Companies” and part of FT Future 100 – the UK’s fastest-growing businesses.
SO/ Maldives is a sartorially-rooted retreat set on a pristine private island, surrounded by the turquoise Emboodhoo Lagoon, providing a luxurious island getaway experience. Having arrived by speedboat – just 15 minutes from Malé’s Velana International Airport – guests will be welcomed into a glamorous glass pavilion with 360-degree views. A conceptualised runway experience will give the impression that visitors are starring in their own fashion show. Discerning travellers can choose to stay in a collection of beachfront and over-water pool villas, which range from 120 to 330 square metres and are all crafted by renowned designers in a contemporary style, inspired by nature and local culture. Every villa will feature solar panels, as part of a commitment to sustainable operations. A selection of Family Beach Pool Villa with Capsules will also include private capsules for kids, and the stunning two-level, Three-Bedroom Ocean Water Pool Atelier will set the stage for life’s special occasions.
The resort will feature three main dining and social venues: Lazuli Beach Club will host the Maldives’ most sophisticated parties, with international DJs and eclectic entertainment programmes, while Hadaba will blend fine-dining with the authentic ambience of a Middle Eastern restaurant, and The Citronelle Club is an all-day dining restaurant inspired by the flavours of Asia.
SO/ Maldives joins two existing resorts at CROSSROADS Maldives: SAii Lagoon Maldives, Curio Collection by Hilton and Hard Rock Hotel Maldives. Nestled within the exquisite Emboodhoo Lagoon, this diverse trio of retreats is seamlessly connected to a wealth of world-class facilities at The Marina @ CROSSROADS, an 800-metre lifestyle area and beach walk lined with restaurants and bars, retail boutiques, wellness centres, water sports, diving and snorkelling, kids’ clubs, and a 30-berth yacht marina, plus the Maldives Discovery Centre cultural hub and Marine Discovery Centre, which is dedicated to underwater conservation and education.
By completing the collection of luxury and lifestyle resorts at CROSSROADS Maldives, S Hotels & Resorts is further raising the bar for sustainable hospitality in this breath-taking destination, where cultures meet. This integrated development has already won multiple major awards and has achieved Green Globe™ Certification, which underscores the group’s deep environmental commitment.
Mr. Dirk De Cuyper, CEO, S Hotels & Resorts, said: “We are delighted to announce the launch of SO/ Maldives, which marks the completion of phase one at CROSSROADS Maldives. This milestone comes at the perfect time, as the hotel’s opening will enable us to capitalise on the continued surge in visitor arrivals to the Maldives, which have jumped 15 percent in 2023*. We look forward to welcoming even more experience-seeking travellers to our three world-class Maldivian resorts in future.”
Mr. Zaw Win Maung, Managing Director, WEWD, added: “The Maldives is a truly special destination and we are proud to be contributing to its prosperous future in partnership with S Hotels & Resorts. SO/ Maldives is an outstanding resort that will attract a new generation of trend-setting guests to the country. We are excited to introduce this one-of-a-kind project to the world in November 2023.”
“We are incredibly excited to bring to you, SO/ Maldives, where Castaway Meets Runway. We will be opening our doors very soon and can’t wait to share this amazing property with you and to the world, a place that is inspired by the glamour of fashion, design, natural beauty of the Maldives and sustainability. It is by far one of a kind here in this stunning destination as it offers great intervenes of statement and masterpiece delivering our guests their unforgettable experiences at our island where chic and chill hangs out with haute couture. In short – it’s the carefully picked and curated heaven on water” says Jesper Soerensen, General Manager, SO/ Maldives.
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* International arrivals to the Maldives increased 15.2% year-on-year in the first five months of 2023 (source: https://www.tourism.gov.mv/en/