Where do the super rich hide out in yachts the size of aircraft carriers and parked negligently among tuna boats and dhonis. A dhoni is not a dessert. In the Maldives, it is the main form of transportation as roads among a few hundred atolls are not practical. The atolls themselves are the homes of the resorts that dreams are made of.
In many cases, one resort has leased the entire island and other than the staff and the other guests, you are in a tiny paradise that is almost ethereal. It’s not cheap. The ultimate luxuries of wealth, time and space, are never cheap. The paparazzi simply can’t get to you. There are no neighbourhoods dogs. The scungy kids from next door are 10,000 kilometres away and they have to swim.
The resorts are serviced by a small airforce of 80 twin otters sitting on floats and flying close enough to the surface that if you turn the motors off, they just plop down in the lagoons. Every resort has its own dhoni to pick you up in the airport and whisk you in no time to the resort.
But the true paradise is under the ocean. With just a snorkel, you can poke around reefs and tumbled stones where the fish have not seen humans trawling them and have no idea how deeply offensive we are. These maybe the last wild creatures that neither attack nor run away, they just poke about the rainbow reefs getting on with life
The Maldives are quiet. They're not everyone’s choice for vacations. If you are a Yucatan, Barbados, Sharmel Sheikh kind of person, you will hate the Maldives. If the notion of a quiet paradise of brilliant and jewel like resorts isolated in time and space really makes sense, welcome home.