Which Park Hyatt Maldives Villa is the Best

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During our visit to the Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa we (unintentionally) ended up staying in all three villa types that they have on the private island.  This stay was a part of an around-the-world celebration for my husband’s 40th birthday, and it was an epic journey paid for primarily with miles and points we won’t soon be able to repeat.  Feel free to check out some of the other posts from the big trip below.

Introduction to an Around the World Trip on Points

Highlights from Business Class Flights Around the World on Miles (Part 1)

Review of Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht

Things to Do With 36 Hours in Amsterdam

Overview of the Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa

Which Park Hyatt Maldives Villa is the Best

Food and Activities at the Park Hyatt Maldives on a Budget

Are the Maldives Worth It?

Review of Singapore and EVA Business Class Flights Home

The Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa is on its own island made up of 50 private villas that circle the island and then, in the case of the over-water villas, head out into the water on a jetty.  There are three types of villas: The Park Villa, The Park Pool Villa, and the Park Water Villa.  If you are booking with points (and I sure hope you are), the standard room type at this resort you can book for 30,000 points or 15,000 points + $300 per night is the Park Villa.

As always you can supplement your Hyatt Gold Passport account by transferring points in 1:1 from the Chase Ultimate Rewards program and cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or Ink Plus Business Card, or even the Chase Freedom® if you also have one of those other two cards.  The property is also a very, very good use of the two free nights that come via the sign-up bonus from the Chase Hyatt Visa (look for the best offer with statement credit while making a Hyatt.com reservation).

Cost to Upgrade to Pool or Water Villa:

If you want to book on points but stay in an “upgraded” villa type then you will have to pay a cash co-pay on top of your points reservation in order to secure that villa type in advance.  Some lucky Diamond guests have received complimentary upgrades, usually to the Pool Villa, but you absolutely cannot count on that happening.  If you have your heart set on a pool or water villa then you need to be ready to pay extra to secure that type of lodging.  Diamond suite upgrades will not help get you into a different villa type at this resort.

The upgrade amounts seem to vary some based on the time of the year, but in general are currently reported to be around $235/night extra for the pool villa and $465/night for the water villa (note it was $365 night extra when we visited last year).  Those are big numbers just for an upgraded room, but keep in mind the room rate even for the standard villa at this property is usually about $1,000/night if you book directly with Hyatt.

A natural inclination might be to view the Water Villas as the “best” since they offer the iconic island image and they cost the most, but I would argue that they are absolutely not “the best” in all situations.  “Best” will depend largely on what is important to you and the time of year that you are visiting The Maldives.  Below is a map of the island and the villas.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Villa:

We spent our first night on the island in the standard Park Villa, with the intention of moving to the Water Villa for the rest of the stay.  We did this in part to review the villa type for this site, but also to save a little cash since we knew we would be super tired the first night and wouldn’t get a full day’s value out of the water villa anyway.

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We didn’t expect to love this villa knowing we were going to the water villa for the rest of the trip, but we were wrong.  All of the villas at this resort are large and very well done.  They are constructed with native timber and stone with large windows and a king sized bed.  The villa was very private thanks to the vegetation around it.  Because of the vegetation, and the way the villas are laid out, you aren’t going to frequently see folks wandering by your windows, and it can feel like you are actually on your own private island.

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We found the bed to be comfortable and the room to be cool enough to be quite comfortable for sleeping thanks to the shade provided by the vegetation and the air conditioner.

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We booked our stay when the hotel was still 22,000 points per night, and it is safe to say that this is the nicest standard room with points that I had ever booked, or probably will ever book.  I mean, it’s not a room, but it’s your own stinking villa!

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While I loved the calm and spacious bedroom portion of the villa, my favorite part had to be the bathroom.  Specifically, I loved the outdoor shower area that boosts both an outdoor shower and separate tub.  Again thanks to the vegetation and high walls, it felt like a very private area.

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If you prefer to shower indoors, there is an indoor shower also available in the villa.

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The bathroom area was spacious with two separate sinks, closets, and areas for you and another person to get ready.

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The villa had direct beach access through a little walkway in the vegetation, so you are not far from the water at all, even in a “park” villa.

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Our night in the Park Villa was extremely relaxing and I was a little sad to leave the villa the next day to head to the Water Villa, though my excitement jumped several notches at the golf cart turned onto the jetty and headed out to the water villas.

Park Hyatt Maldives Water Villa:

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We were down right giddy to arrive at our Water Villa and begin that part of the celebratory stay.  We never thought we would be able to stay over the ocean in our own villa, so we were like kids on Christmas as we explored every inch of the villa.

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The interior of the villa was very similar to the Park Villa, if not perhaps a bit smaller.

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Of course the Water Villa has something that the other villas don’t have – this insane view.

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There is no outdoor shower in the Water Villas, but the bathroom does have both an indoor shower and indoor bath tub.  As you can see, the bath tub may have the best views of any bath tub ever.

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The bathroom where you can use the sinks and get ready is a bit smaller than in the Park Villa.

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Of course you probably don’t stay in a Water Villa in order to stay inside.  You stay there in order to enjoy your own private outdoor deck.

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This outdoor deck is fantastic not just during the day, but also at night as you can take the iPads that are in each room outside and use the star-gazing app to see stars you have probably never seen before in your life.

You can also snorkel right off the steps of your deck and into the water, which was quite the treat.  However, it is very tough to tell the villas apart from the water, so be sure to somehow mark or count which one is yours before heading off with your flippers.  We had a couple of folks walk onto our deck after snorkeling as they thought it was their villa.  If you are taking advantage of the nice bathtub with the view or similar, that can lead to some awkward situations.

Water Villa #51 is typically regarded as the most private as it is the last one on the jetty, so if you can snag that one you are in luck.  View From the Wing has stayed in that villa many times, so head to him for a detailed review.  However, most of the others aren’t actually that private as you can see other villas from your deck, and they can see you.  There will also be folks walking down the jetty to their villas, so the Water Villa is not actually as private as the villas surrounded by vegetation on the island.  Unless of course you get Villa #51…

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That aside, I loved our Water Villa the first afternoon we were in it (when all the above photos were taken), but my love started to drop shortly thereafter.  First, the air conditioner simply could not keep up with the sun, heat, and wind.  This was not a problem unique to our villa, and several calls to maintenance did little to improve the situation.  Our Park Villa was nice and cool thanks to the shade provided by the trees, but this one was uncomfortably warm for my tastes at over 80 degrees for the duration of our stay.

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The next issue for me came when the rain returned later that evening.  This will come down to personal preference, but the waves and storm made the villa feel like it was moving and did not make for restful sleep for me at all.  Some of the waves sounded very loud and large, and it just wasn’t a relaxing sound or feeling to be out in a villa over the water in the middle of all of that.  This is not to mention that actually even getting out to your villa in the middle of a wavy and windy storm is not the simplest proposition…

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Thanks to the poor rest we got during our night in the Water Villa because of the wind, storm, and heat, we asked to move back to the island after just one night.  Turns out that was a pretty good choice as the weather remained poor off and on for the duration of the stay.  Had we not been there on the cusp of monsoon season, our time in the Water Villa may have been very different.

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Park Pool Villa:

Because of our unexpected lack of love for the Water Villa, we got a chance to experience a third type of villa on our trip, the Park Pool Villa.  If I was Goldilocks, this is the one that could be described as “just right”.  The Park Pool Villa is virtually identical to the Park Villa that we stayed in the first night, with one main difference.  This villa type comes with its own private pool!

IMG_1545.JPGI was so happy moving back to this villa as it was cool, had the outdoor shower again, but had the added luxury of our own pool and outdoor lounger.  It also had direct access to our own chairs (and coconuts) right on the beach.

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I don’t think it is actually necessary to spend extra for any villa type at this resort for most people, but if I ever did pay to upgrade again, it would be to the pool villa for sure.  This had the perfect balance of everything for us, and we enjoyed every minute of our time here.  We even ate some of our meals via room service by our own private pool which sounds like paradise to me!

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The Best Villa at the Park Hyatt Maldives is…

We liked the Pool Villa the best, but I don’t think there will be one best villa for everyone here.  Honestly they are all very, very nice in their own ways.  Given the price to upgrade and our experience, I would not consider the Water Villas again, though I know some people absolutely love that villa type.  I would encourage you to take into account time of year and weather when deciding which villa you want for your trip.  If you are going during the monsoon season, I would think twice about the Water Villa.  Outside of that season, any of the villa types will have their own appeal.  I also strongly feel there is nothing at all wrong with just using points and staying in the Park Villa without spending any extra money to upgrade at all.

I feel super lucky to have experienced all three villa types, and am more than happy to answer any questions you may have about the villas at the Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa.

 

Editorial Note: The opinions expressed here are mine and not provided, reviewed, by any bank, card issuer, or other company unless otherwise stated.

Disclaimer: The comments below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Comments

  1. Agreed completely. We honeymooned there in september, spending the first 3 nights in pool villa (free upgrade as hyatt diamond), and upgrading to water villa for the last 4 nights. We absolutely loved the pool villa for exact same reasons you listed but were giddy to move into the water villa for $125/night upgrade offered to us. Very first night we experienced both a foul smelling sewage issue (first water villa on the jetty) and a storm that made sleeping very hard and made my wife feel like we were going to get swept away by the first 8ft wave that comes through, leading for rather poor sleep as well. Sewage issue was quickly resolved the first day, but we did have some air condioner trouble as well and also the water villa is noticably harder to maintain and have a luxurious feel to due to it’s location/humidity/salt, giving it comparatively cheap feel vs the pool villa. Regardless, would return here in a heart beat–loved our stay, but would definitely stay at a pool villa which was incredible.

  2. HI…I spoke to PH MLE a few weeks back and they told me they are no longer participating in c+p program. So, either you pay or book on points only.

    • Zh, I would check again. That was true as a Cat 6, but I think they re-opened some availability as a Cat 7. I think View From the Wing wrote about that recently.

  3. Hi Summer,

    I’m thinking of buying your Orlando for Nearly Free ebook, just one quick question: I already know how to buy miles from U.S. airlines and use those miles to fly first class from Asia to USA – saving over 80% off regular airfare, I wonder if your ebook is still useful to me? I’ll take your word at face value, if your answer is yes, I’ll make the purchase today.

    • Silver,
      You will certainly know much of what is covered in the book. I think what may be most helpful is simply a good summary of all of the info you already know as it relates specifically to Orlando (assuming that is a destination you are planning to visit). I think they just dropped the price quite a bit, so at that rate I bet it is worth your time, but just don’t expect for every page to be brand new info to you. 😉

  4. A/C issues seem to be common at this resort. We stayed here last year in the Park Villa and had air conditioning issues our entire stay. The A/C units they have installed just can’t keep up with the heat. The GM mentioned that they were considering purchasing a couple of portable AC units because of the problems we experienced. We also stayed at the Conrad Maldives on the same trip and did not have any issues with the room temp. The A/C problems are the main reason we will be returning to the Conrad instead of the Park Hyatt. I hope they replace the A/C units someday so we can return as the snorkeling was very good!

  5. Honestly would not have expected AC temps to be such a consistent annoyance across high-quality villas. Very good rundown of things to consider given the high demand and price required to book resort experiences of this caliber.

  6. Can’t imagine most of your target demographic will ever visit this resort, but this is such a helpful post for those that do. These are the types of things I agonize over before a trip like this and everyone always assumes the “upgrade” will be better!

    • Lynn, oh I totally agree that this isn’t a resort that every points junkie will get to, but for anyone that does decide to go, I hope this helps. I know I was surprised by which villa type worked best for us.

      • Yeah, this post would be super useful to anyone planning a visit here. Those are the kind of specific details I’m often searching for when contemplating different room types at a hotel I’m booking for our family.
        Even though I doubt I’ll ever visit this place, I still love the vicarious luxury. It helps that I find your writing style to be easy for me to relate to.
        The over water bungalow wave thing is funny. I can imagine myself having a very nervous sleep-less night. But there was a time when I would’ve found it to be super exciting. I imagine my dad would enjoy listening to the rough seas and feeling snug and comfy in his villa.

  7. We are in Colombo, Sri Lanka now and are checking into the Park Hyatt Maldives in 5 nights. Absolutely can’t wait! I love the reviews and recommendations you have given on this property! Thanks!

  8. FWIW, I have heard numerous reports from many of the top properties with over-water villas/bungalows that the air con is not as effective/reliable with over-water rooms. The salt and temperature conditions combine to make air con units work much harder to achieve the same temperature, understandably, which makes for a less cooling ability overall. It isn’t just as the PH; it’s true at almost all of the resorts of comparable quality (including the W, FS, etc).

    I’ve never yearned to be over-water; I always yearn to have my own private plunge pool whenever possible in hot/humid climes. So this review makes me certain that the Park Pool Villa is the best choice for us, as well. To be fair, that would be true for us at far more resorts than just in the Maldives, but the Maldives and Bora Bora seem to be the two locations where over-water suites/villas/bungalows are the most common and most desired. I actually like that most people prefer over-water, since it makes getting upgraded or paying for the private pool beach villas that much easier!

  9. First off, thank you and everyone at Boarding area for all your detailed trip reports and advice. I am currently in the process of booking my honeymoon to the The Maldives and Thailand for February 2016 and the information and tips I have gotten from this website have been invaluable. I made sure to use your link for the Chase Hyatt credit card that I applied for last week as a show of appreciation.

    Anyways, after reading this article I am a little torn on what to do with regard upgrading. I know everyone has their own preferences and ultimately have to make their own decisions. However, I originally planned to use 60K Hyatt GP points and my 2 free nights certs from Chase for 4 nights total in the Park Villa. I was going to upgrade to a Water Villa on the 4th night only and pay the $$ difference. I have never stayed on an overwater anything so it’s something I was really looking forward to. Based on your experience, should I stick with this plan or should I upgrade to a pool villa for the 4 nights instead. Or would you advise to leave well enough alone and use the $500 – $1K I would likely spend towards things like excursions and spa treatments etc? Luckily my wife to be is extremely low maintenance and will be happy with whatever I decide. The upgrade will be solely to experience an overwater villa for the first and possibly only time. Is it worth it? Thanks again!

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