On a colourful, exotic archipelago in the Maldives, Maadhoo, lies an unparalleled paradise, with one of the Maldives’ only five underwater restaurants, OZEN by ATMOSPHERE. Hashtag Life visited for a stay which transfixed us into five nights of utter indulgence and rejuvenation
Much of my impetus for travel has always been for the love of seeing the world, or, in short, for the love of life. So, much to my surprise, on arriving at Ozen by Atmosphere in the Maldives, one of their convivial areas is aptly called the Joie De Vivre pool and bar. This concept extends much farther than just this space – Ozen embodies a methodology of ensuring that their guests not only fall in love with their stay but with every aspect of the Ozen way of living – a laid back luxury which many resorts in the Maldives boast of, but not all embody, long after a guest’s departure.
Arriving at Ozen, was like arriving on a private island playground for adults. The design, colours, laid-back luxury, activities and spirit of the island spell fun and wonder, whilst the dedicated island hosts cater bespoke itineraries for each guest.
I arrived to a beautifully prepared beach villa, with sunset views (all villas at Ozen are split horizontally to either face sunrise, or sunset) – and an itinerary to help ease me into a curated and seamless stay. The all-inclusive Indulgence Plan encompasses all elements of an ultra luxurious stay; all dining experiences, drinks, excursions, non-motorised water sports and in-villa mini bar services are included in the stay. This takes all the weight of counting, planning, and thinking off of guests’ shoulders and allows them to truly and simply indulge in their stay. If that is not enough, for guests staying more than five nights, a treatment at The Elena Spa will be included in their stay, as well as a visit to the breath-taking M6M Restaurant, one of only 5 underwater restaurants in all of the Maldives. Everything you need is covered.
There are champagne breakfasts, hearty a la carte lunches, and dinners at its international, IndoCeylon, Peking, R.A.W Sushi and Joie de Vivre restaurants, as well as their all day dining restaurant where breakfast is also served, and possibly one of my favourite options – The Palms Restaurant. There are bottomless drinks with Champagne, whiskies, international beers, premium spirits, and more than 80 wines. As a self-confessed wine snob, regrettably, I often find myself steering away from alcohol on all-inclusive plans, as it can often be subpar, albeit unlimited. Ozen promises something different; we were blown away by some of the most world class wine selections, and what is clearly a thoughtful, well picked selection of good, worthy wines. Ozen also spares no expense in offering premium champagne options, and this generous touch resonated firmly with us, as it is a rare (if not non-existent) offering in any hotel world wide, for all inclusive plans.
The food offering is equally first class. M6m, the underwater restaurant, offers an exceptionally special experience. Utterly professional staff seamlessly guide you through a 5-7 course Michelin worthy meal, of European Cuisine. The restaurant is laid out to offer all guests perfect aquarium views of the sea life and corals; rather than trying to maximise space and cram in several tables, as most other restaurants would do. Following our visit to M6m, effortful as we were to book every meal thereafter at the restaurant, alas, it was fully booked, but all the more reason to revisit Ozen (for a longer duration!) I would say that M6m alone is a reason to choose Ozen above other resorts in the Maldives, yet the hotels many other amenities hold just as much appeal.
The main restaurant, The Palms, is spectacularly run – the a la carte menu at dinner offers fine dining options in a casual, relaxed atmosphere, accompanied by a vast buffet similar to that of breakfast and lunch, with endless cold and warm options, appetisers, and live grill and food stations. The options are truly endless and the food quality is excellent.
Similarly the international cuisines restaurants with IndoCeylon offering flavours from India and the Indian Ocean, and Peking offering Chinese food, offering a stunning water-facing setting for the perfect evening recline to delicious and creative asian/oriental flavours which will not disappoint.
Every Friday, the team of hosts and staff at Ozen throw a wonderful, resort wide event, a Gala Dinner, which begins at the Joie De Vivre pool and restaurant-bar. Guests meet here for an evening of canapés, drinks, mingling, and entertainment and games – with even prizes to be won – in a classy setting with an international DJ to set an ambient and enjoyable atmosphere. Following this guests are invited to The Palms restaurant where an absolutely stellar live band performs jazzy, soulful music, of exceptional standard, whilst dinner is served in the form of first class food stations and every ingredient and cuisine you can think of!
Aside from the unrivalled dining Ozen has to offer, a service to really write home about must be the Elena Spa. The paradisiacal Spa is spread across water villas with soothing ocean views directly from your spa beds. Whether your body needs a deep tissue massage, time to meditate, or a detoxifying treatment, Elena is the perfect place to switch off and allow yourself to sink into the peaceful Maldivian way of life. The therapists are kind, comforting, and extremely specialised, delivering treatments that target stress and rejuvenate you for the remainder of your stay, and beyond.
From the beautiful, spacious views, roaring sunsets with rich colours unseen before, to the kind staff who feel more like family than hosts, and the wealth of activities such as dolphin cruises, sunset fishing, PADI diving, Ozen is a little haven you won’t bare to leave. It has a spirit of kindness, and generosity, that none of the six Maldivian resorts I have visited to date have mastered quite as exceptionally. It holds a masterful balance of tranquility and activity, of class and casual-comfort, of indulgence and privacy. It is a resort executed with the guest at the absolute forefront, and a resort I would blindly recommend to all in need of a reset, a seven star holiday, a no-nonsense, all-indulgent, and in short: perfect stay.
Visit: Ozen by Atmosphere