Luxury in Your Own Way, At Your Own Pace at Gili Lankanfushi

Gili Lankanfushi Maldives - Destination Deluxe
Photo: Courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi
Set on a private island in the North Malé Atoll, Gili Lankanfushi is a pioneer in sustainable barefoot luxury in the Maldives

Blending rustic design, bespoke service, and incredible natural surroundings, Gili Lankanfushi is an award-winning property, honored most recently in the 2021 Tripadvisor awards as one of Asia’s top 10 hotels and ranking in the top 10% of hotels worldwide.

Gili Lankanfushi boasts 45 overwater villas rendered in rustic-luxe style with recycled materials, sumptuous textiles, and warm, neutral colors. All villas come with open-air living spaces, rooftop terraces, and private decks that offer direct access to the waters.

Furthermore, Gili Lankanfushi boasts a 24/7 butler service. Named after Robinson Crusoe’s loyal assistant, Mr. Friday, your exclusive butler will wait on you hand and foot. Day or night and no matter what the request, your host is there to help with everything from unpacking your suitcases to organizing dining experiences and excursions or even setting up a bed under the stars. Parents will be pleased to know that Mr. Friday can also keep little ones entertained.

Gili Lankanfushi Private Reserve Maldives - Destination Deluxe
Photo: Courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi


Wellness is a key part of the Gili Lankanfushi experience and centers on the overwater Meera Spa, where global therapies draw on ancient knowledge. Guests can indulge in Tibetan Singing Bowl sessions, Japanese Reiki treatments, Indian Ayurvedic rituals, and more, delivered with organic products by Voya or Meera-branded products created with local ocean and plant extracts.

Three new wellness programs lead guests on journeys of self-care and holistic healing. The 3-day Revitalising Recovery program reinvigorates the mind and body; the 5-day Detox Retreat combines physical and mental therapies to heal; while the 7-day Rejuvenating Senses journey provides total rejuvenation.

See also: Top 10 Wellness Retreats in the Maldives

Gili Lankanfushi Maldives Meera Spa - Destination Deluxe
Photo: Courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi

The resort offers an extensive activity program that includes surfing, diving, snorkeling, yoga, meditation, and more. Guests can combine active pursuits with relaxing rituals in two specially-conceived wellness programs. The 4-night Surf & Spa combines sunrise yoga and surf lessons with reflexology and guided marine tours, while the 5-night Holistic Healing program includes daily yoga, guided breathwork, and spa treatments.

Rounding out Gili Lankanfushi’s wellness offerings is a roster of international visiting practitioners that offer curated programs, and wellness cuisine made from fresh, local ingredients and produce from the island’s expansive organic garden.

Maldives Diving Gili Lankanfushi - Destination Deluxe
Photo: Courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi


Gili Lankanfushi is well-equipped to host family getaways. There are plenty of villa options available, but for a real treat, book the 1,700-sqm Private Residence – the world’s largest overwater villa – where you’ll enjoy total seclusion with four bedrooms, extensive living areas, and a private gym, spa, cinema, and infinity pool.

Guests can indulge in Fini Foni popsicles and ice-cream by the pool, as well as private cooking classes en famille. Kids can also catch a wave with Tropicsurf on the 3-day Surfing with Kids package or enroll in kids’ tennis programs run by Recreational Tennis Coaching.

See also: Top 10 Private Islands

Gili Lankanfushi Maldives Sunset - Destination Deluxe
Photo: Courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi


Love is definitely in the air at Gili Lankanfushi. Check into one of the seven Crusoe Residences, which are secluded lagoon hideaways – only accessible by boat – where you’ll enjoy a sprawling space with a private coral garden, roof terrace with daybed, and sundeck with direct ocean access.

Romance in style with the property’s dining destination experiences featuring bespoke European-Maldivian menus made with local seafood and produce. Dine under the stars at the Organic Garden, beachside jetty, treetop table, or private island, or head to the Underground Wine Cellar for a romantic wine and cheese (or chocolate) tasting.  

While here, embark on a sunset Champagne cruise on a traditional Maldivian dhoni, sleep under the stars in a special set-up on your private rooftop terrace, or enjoy an al fresco cinema date at the Jungle Cinema. For couples wishing to take to the waters, climb aboard the luxury Riviera yacht for a whale shark-watching trip or fishing excursion. Or, head off on a private desert island picnic, take a day cruise to explore surrounding atolls, or enjoy a night cruise where you can sleep at sea.

Gili Lankanfushi Maldives Pool Villa - Destination Deluxe
Photo: Courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi


Conservation and sustainability are woven into Gili Lankanfushi’s DNA. The resort’s villas feature furniture made by skilled artisans with upcycled materials, such as bed frames made from reclaimed teakwood, and lampshades comprised of recycled wire mesh. But the furniture’s just the start.

At the Gili Veshi Marine Biology Shack, a team of marine biologists focuses on protecting the area’s fragile marine ecosystem. The conservation program here includes monitoring the health of the coral reefs and identifying and tracking sea life like manta rays. Visiting scientists and academics assist with studying the ecosystem, while Gili’s Coral Lines project has a nursery that grows new corals to boost the house reef.

Gili has also gone to great lengths to ensure it is a sustainable leader in the Maldives. All buildings are sustainably constructed with ethically-sourced plantation teak, palm wood, bamboo, and recycled telegraph poles, while in each villa, organic toiletries are set out in refillable earthenware containers. A rocket composter processes food waste to produce compost that’s used in the island’s organic herb garden, while a desalination plant produces still and sparkling water for the resort – packaged in reusable glass bottles, naturally.

To encourage guests in their sustainability efforts, the property has a Powered by Plants package that includes plant-based meals and nature-based experiences that have minimal impact on the planet. Responsible travelers can indulge in plant-based menus, sleep in wool-free bedding, and use reef-safe Australian sunscreen.

See also: Top 9 Honeymoon Destinations

Organic Garden Gili Lankanfushi Maldives - Destination Deluxe
Photo: Courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi


With a focus on wellness and sustainability, a charming rustic-luxe aesthetic, and a wealth of bespoke experiences, Gili Lankanfushi is a true Maldivian paradise. Check in and feel your cares slip away under the spell of this award-winning result.

Gili Lankanfushi Private Reserve - Destination Deluxe
Photo: Courtesy of Gili Lankanfushi


See also: Maldives Travel Guide – 8 Ways to Experience the Maldives