The Conrad Maldives Rangali Island experience starts before you even reach the resort. Upon landing in the Maldives you are greeted by hotel staff who walk you to your private Conrad vehicle. From there you are transported to a Conrad lounge at the seaplane terminal with multiple amenities before boarding the plane to the resort. This is part eight of a fifteen part trip report from my travels to the Maldives and Dubai. This picture report covers the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island airport and seaplane experience.
- Trip Report – United Economy Plus JFK-LAX
- Korean Air First Class Lounge LAX
- Trip Report Part 1 – Emirates First Class on the A380 w/ Shower Suite – LAX – Dubai (DXB)
- Trip Report Part 2 – Emirates First Class on the A380 w/ Shower Suite – LAX – Dubai (DXB)
- Emirates First Class Lounge – A380 Terminal – Concourse A – Dubai
- Emirates First Class Lounge Concourse B – Dubai
- Trip Report – Emirates First Class DXB- Malé (MLE) – DXB B777-200LR
- Conrad Maldives Rangali Island Resort Part 1 – Airport Experience, Lounge, and Seaplane Transfer
- Conrad Maldives Rangali Island Resort Part 2 – The Resort – Rooms, Upgrades, Amenities, Activities, Restaurants, and Costs
- Male Airport Plaza Premium Lounge
- Sheraton Jumeirah Beach Resort
- Emirates Business Class Lounge – A380 Terminal – Concourse A – Dubai
- Trip Report – Emirates First Class DXB – Milan (MXP)
- Trip Report – Emirates Lounge Milan
- Trip Report – Emirates First Class MXP – JFK B777-300ER
I booked the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island all the way back in March 2013 just prior to the HHonors devaluation – 3 Days till HHonors Devaluation – How I’m Using My Points. Almost all the points were acquired using the sign-up bonuses from the Hawaiian Airlines Bank of America and Hawaiian Airlines Bank of Hawaii cards. I decided to book the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island as it was somewhere I always wanted to visit and it was moving from a category 7 to the new category 10. Additionally, at the time of booking the cash rate was $1365 per night or 37.5k points per night, after March 28th that rate was going up to 95,000 per night but the 5th night would be free.
As we got closer to the travel dates the cash rates were even more expensive:
OK, more about the room reserved and the unexpected and amazing upgrade we received in part two tomorrow.
After collecting your luggage at the airport you’ll see several Conrad team members in the arrivals hall. We were warmly greeted upon providing our names and taken to our Conrad vehicle just outside the arrivals hall. The car had the A/C on blast and two cold water bottles and towels waiting for us. It’s a short 10 minute drive to the seaplane terminal and interestingly enough you’ll go right by the main runway with no fencing or other barriers (3rd pic below)…
There’s another team member waiting for you as your car arrives to the terminal and you are escorted upstairs to the Conrad lounge. There’s a formal check-in area, but it seemed that all guests were instead brought inside the lounge, situated in comfy chairs, and then asked for their credit cards and passports. All paperwork was then brought inside the lounge…but first you’ll receive another cool towel and a choice of juices.
Seating in the lounge with pretty awesome views…
Full breakfast selection in the lounge…
Perhaps you want a complimentary massage? Granted, if you like it they will ask you to reserve another massage for once you arrive at the resort, but you are not pressured and you can simply say that you want to review all your activity options once you arrive.
Shower and kid’s playroom in the lounge as well…
It’s extremely warm out but the terrace with views of all the seaplanes landing and taking off is worth checking out for a bit…
Note that although there is a plane in the Conrad colors, that’s not necessarily the one you’ll be taking. We were on the plane above as all the planes are operated by Trans Maldivian airlines on behalf of the many hotels. You are assigned a seaplane based on when you arrive at the lounge, so they say you could wait up to two hours if there are other planes that arrived before yours. Luckily, our wait time was a little less than 90 minutes.
I guess here is where I should mention the price for these flights…they are not included in your nightly hotel rate. A few weeks before your trip you’ll receive an email like the one below from the hotel. They’ll ask for your flight details so that they can set up the seaplane transfers at a cost of $507.60 per person roundtrip. You really have no other options. The hotel can set up a boat transfer that can take up to 3 hours and the cost can be even higher as you’re essentially charting a boat. There are luggage restrictions (55lbs checked and 5 lbs carry-on) and our bags were weighed, but no one said anything even though they were both over.
We were seated up front with two very chill pilots just enjoying the ride…both wearing sandals! The flight takes about 30 minutes and the scenery below was beautiful. You’re provided earbuds, but I didn’t find the sound to be loud enough that I needed them. The flight was smooth and the landing in the water was great.
Interestingly enough, it seems that the plane may have been a former Qantas plane…
There’s a full welcoming committee waiting for you at the seaplane dock upon arrival. You’ll soon be greeted by your host who will grab your luggage and escort you across the bridge to check-in. The guest service manager is also there to greet everyone and chit chat a bit…
Follow along tomorrow (weds.) for the second part of the trip report including a full review of the resort, amenities, activities, our upgrade, the costs, and more.