Review: Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa

Introduction
Cathay Pacific First Class 777-300ER New York JFK To Hong Kong
Qantas Lounge Hong Kong Airport
Dragonair G16 Lounge Hong Kong Airport
SriLankan Business Class A330-200 Hong Kong To Bangkok
SriLankan Business Class A330-200 Bangkok To Colombo
SriLankan Serendib Lounge Colombo Airport
SriLankan Business Class A330-300 Colombo To Male
Beach Palace Hotel / Ui Inn Maldives
Domestic Maldivian Moonimaa Lounge Male Airport
Maldivian Dash 8 Male To Kooddoo And Park Hyatt Boat Transfer
Park Hyatt Maldives Park Villa
Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa
Park Hyatt Maldives Park Water Villa
Park Hyatt Maldives Breakfast & Diamond Cocktails
Park Hyatt Maldives Resort Overview
Park Hyatt Boat Transfer And Maldivian Dash 8 Kooddoo to Male
Leeli Lounge Male Airport
Cathay Pacific Business Class A330-300 Male To Hong Kong
Regal Airport Hotel Hong Kong
Cathay Pacific Business Class 777-300ER Hong Kong To Newark


As I explained in the last installment, I spent the first two nights in a “base” room, which is the Park Villa. I thought it was gorgeous, and it definitely exceeded my expectations.

The next category up is a Park Pool Villa. As a Diamond member there were two ways I could be upgraded to this:

  • I could receive a space available upgrade on day of arrival
  • I could pay a supplement of $250.10 ($205 plus 22% tax/service charge) per night to confirm an upgrade at the time of booking

I chanced it, and while they didn’t have a Park Pool Villa available for my first two nights, they did have one available for the rest of my stay. This hotel is great about working with you to upgrade you during your stay if rooms become available, which I really appreciate. And they make the move really easy as well, as you just pack your bags and they’ll move them between villas when they become available.

My Park Pool Villa was Villa 37, which is the very first one when you leave the restaurant/pool area. It’s just past the jetty which takes you to the Park Water Villas (there are 14 of them). So it is very convenient to be so close to the action, and it’s not like there’s much foot traffic in a resort with just 50 villas.

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Park Hyatt Maldives resort layout

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Park Hyatt Maldives walkway to villa

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37

The entrance to the Park Pool Villa looked virtually identical to the one at the Park Villa. I quickly connected the dots and realized that’s because the villas are identical on the inside.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37 entrance

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37 entrance

Literally identical, from the bed to the desk to the daybed to the chair with the ottoman.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37 bedroom area

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37 bedroom area

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37 bathroom area

The bathrooms were identical as well, including with the outdoor shower.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37 bathroom area

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37 bathroom area

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa 37 outdoor shower

The only difference is the patio area, which is substantially larger in a Park Pool Villa.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa plunge pool

As expected, there’s a plunge pool with an infinity edge.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa plunge pool

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa plunge pool

To the right of the pool were two lounge chairs with an umbrella.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa plunge pool

To the left of the plunge pool were some cushions with pillows.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa plunge pool

Then as was the case with the other villa, there were two chairs, along with a fairly large table.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa patio

There were a handful of stairs you could use to directly access the beach.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa walkway to beach

Having this secluded of a beach literally just steps from your bed is pretty damn amazing, I have to say.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa walkway to beach

As you can see below, each villa also has a lot of privacy, thanks to the trees growing around them. That means the plunge pool is truly private.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa view from beach

Villa 37 is the first villa past the jetty leading to the overwater villas, so when you go onto the beach you have a direct view of the 14 overwater villas. Fortunately they’re all angled away from the beach, so they can’t really see you at all.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa view from beach

In the other direction, the beach by Villa 37 faced the “dawn jetty,” as it’s called. That’s much closer to where Villa 31 is, where I had stayed the prior two nights.

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Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa view from beach

Park Hyatt Maldives Park Pool Villa bottom line

It was nice to find out that the difference between a Park Pool Villa and Park Villa is just the plunge pool. Everything else is identical.

Will I take a Diamond upgrade to a Park Pool Villa? Absolutely!

Could I imagine spending $250 per night to upgrade to one? No way. I didn’t use the plunge pool once, though I suppose it was a nice option to have. A plunge pool is something everyone will of course value differently. Some people value the privacy of one, while I’d much rather be out at one of the public pools.

Part of my problem is also that I burn really easily, even when using sunscreen. So I limit my time outside, and am certainly not the type of person who would sit outside my villa for hours on end.

But as always, “your mileage may vary.”

Do you value a feature like a plunge pool? How much extra per night would you be willing to pay for one?

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Comments

  1. The plunge pool is a nice feature to have! But 250 $ might be expensive if you have an almost private beach right outside the villa? I don’t know… I guess I would have a hard time deciding!

  2. I think the $250 is worth it if you have a good chance of being upgraded to an overwater villa. What do you think the chances are that they’d have an open overwater villa? How much more were they per night?

  3. This is the kind of post where I think Lucky doesn’t realize how much power he has in the travel industry. By basically saying the pool villa is not worth it, he is probably costing the hotel thousands of dollars in future revenue from other guests.

  4. Tom – I would hope whether Lucky knows his power, or not, he would tell what he really thinks.

  5. @Seth

    Conrad vs Rangali is personal preference. I stayed at both last year; am returning to the Park Hyatt and not Conrad even though I’m a HHonors Diamond and only HP Playinum.

    @lucky; nice series of reviews!

    regarding close vs far from the action, is any villa more than a 7 minute walk to anywhere else? If I remember correctly, it’s only a 15 minute walk around the island. What is most important is the condition of the beach right by your villa- I remember significant variations in how much beach there was.

    As far as paying for upgrade – I wouldn’t for pool, will definitely do so again for OWB (but not the highest category of OWB). We love to snorkel 2-3 times a day (we wear rash guards to protect from the sun).

  6. Any suggestions for a place that beautiful and romantic that isn’t so far away? I love that, and have never met a Park Hyatt I didn’t like, but don’t think I can go that far. Too old!!!

  7. Neither this nor the Conrad blows anything out of the water, unless you prefer your only bathing options being outdoors. Peeping Toms aside, it rains in the Maldives.

  8. @Carole

    During my younger, beach-going days I loved the wonderfully remote and utterly romantic Hotel Hana Maui in Hawaii. It was so beautiful! And Maui’s eastern shore is mercifully free of the tourist hordes. I believe the Hana Maui is now called the Transvaa, or something like that.

    If Maui is too far for your liking, I have recently stayed at the tiny Secret Bay hotel in Dominica and absolutely loved it. It’s also quite secluded, being smack in the midst of a rain forest. The sea & beach views from it’s cliff top location are breathtaking! And the food was the best I ever had at a hotel or resort.

  9. @Lucky — How deep is the pool? It looks like it’s only 3ft at most, but pictures of water could be deceiving.

  10. Looks like a pretty disappointing view from the plunge pool. I understand the trees are there for privacy’s sake, but I would expect you’d be able to look out right into the beach.

  11. Pool bars notwithstanding, I don’t know why anybody would choose to swim in chlorine when you have natural salt water a few metres over.

  12. “Some people value the privacy of one, while I’d much rather be out at one of the public pools.”

    That’s not good.

  13. The feeling that I am getting, after reading these reports, is that making the extraordinary trip to Male and the Park Hyatt there is really only worth it for an Over-Water Villa because the big and truly special feature is the water. There are plenty of hotels offering rooms like featured here, around the world in easier to get to locations, so that isn’t it’s USP.

    I truly hope Lucky you did spend some time in the water or on the beach, even though you sunburn easily. When you talked about the seclusion of your pool, I wondered if you were about to give us a skinny dip story, but seems your relationship with your pool amounted to just scenery.

  14. Hi Ben,

    Thank you so much for your report! Excellent as always. I had recently heard that the PH Maldives was looking a little worse for wear. Can you let us know if this was your impression as well? Also, I hope to hear more soon about the food and how good the snorkeling/diving is if possible! 🙂 Lastly, given the transfers, when do you think the last check out time would be in order to make it back for a flight, and what time the ex-Male flight would have to leave in order to catch it?

  15. @ blueline7 — I thought the resort was in excellent condition. Can’t say I noticed much wear and tear. Many flights leave Male at 8-10PM, in which case you can take a ~5PM boat from the resort. They’re usually good about late check-out, pending availability.

  16. @ R — When I checked in they explained they didn’t have any Park Pool Villas available, but asked if I wanted one when it became available. I said yes, and they took care of the rest.

  17. @ Julian — I didn’t get in the pool, so maybe someone else can chime in? I’d estimate it was maybe 4′ deep.

  18. @ Carole — Hmmm, you mean not far from the US, or where? Presumably the Caribbean, Hawaii, and Mexico all have nice places, though I don’t find the hospitality to be nearly as good as in Bali or some of my other favorite beach destinations.

  19. @ Beachfan — Yeah that’s a good point, it’s a short walk regardless. That being said, when you leave your villa close to a dozen times a day, I guess one minute vs. seven minutes makes a bit of a difference.

  20. @ Nick — The $250 upgrade fee is to a Pool Villa, and not to a Water Villa (which is more like $500 to upgrade to).

  21. Would you recommend certain villa # over others if we would like to have a good view of the ocean from the villa?

  22. Yes, Caribbean, US or someplace like that. I also love Bali, and would go back in a heartbeat, but my husband thinks it’s too far. And I think the Maldives is as far as it gets.

  23. Nothing beats walking out the back of your villa and plunging right into the Indian Ocean. Water Villa baby! I have been to Maldives 3 times and the rooms at the Park Hyatt look “so-so”, but I guess if you are redeeming points then no complaints. However if you are paying then I would stay elsewhere.

  24. In other words, upgrading to the Park Pool Villa is very similar to upgrading from Biz to First on an AA 77W?

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