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Dreaming of the Maldives? These new and updated points resorts are waiting for you

July 12, 2022
6 min read
infinity pool overlooking ocean with deck
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We all have our dream list of places to visit, right? I've been lucky enough over the years to check a bunch of those destinations off my list including Japan, Bora Bora and Kenya.

One place that's still on the to-do list is the Maldives, an absolutely breathtaking collection of islands in the Indian Ocean, a world away from my Brooklyn apartment.

For years, my family and I have been plotting when we'll visit, what resorts we want to book and what airlines we'll fly for maximum comfort. It's overwhelming, in the best and worst ways, because there are so many choices to make. Plus, for the time and money we'll spend, we want to make sure the trip is as perfect as it can be.

And thanks to my role as a senior hotels reporter at TPG, I continuously find more reasons to finally make that Maldives trip happen — in the near future, at least.

Nowadays, there are even more places to stay in the Maldives using hotel points, especially for Hyatt and Hilton loyalists. A brand new Maldives Hyatt resort will open fully in August, for example, and Hilton recently gave a multimillion-dollar makeover to one of its most classic island properties in addition to opening a brand new resort in the area. So, if you want to avoid paying potentially sky-high cash rates, now might be the time to lean into booking a trip with World of Hyatt or Hilton Honors points.

Related: The best ways to get to the Maldives on points and miles

Whatever your travel style, there's something for you and yours in the Maldives. Here are just a few reasons to trade in some points and visit the Maldives right now.

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Hyatt's new Alila

(Photo courtesy of Hyatt)

World of Hyatt is known for being one of the best programs when it comes to redeeming points for stays, and now the brand has a new option in the Maldives where you can take advantage of those favorable rates: the Alila Kothaifaru Maldives.

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Earlier this year, I reported that Alila Kothaifaru Maldives was ready for a soft open and was accepting reservations starting in April for rates as low as $350 a night. Unfortunately, that time has passed. But just because rates are now at their normal levels doesn't mean you should pass up this exciting new property.

Just a 45-minute seaplane ride from Malé, where the main international airport is located, this resort is set on a private island and comprises 44 beach villas and 36 overwater villas; all accommodations come with a private pool and sun deck, a bathtub, indoor and outdoor showers and a 24-hour personal host.

There are a handful of restaurants and bars to choose from while at the resort. Seasalt is an all-day beachfront restaurant that serves Mediterranean and Middle Eastern fare. Umami, a Japanese restaurant with a teppanyaki grill, and its sister establishment Yakitori Bar, which serves Asian-inspired cocktails, are the perfect places for nighttime dining. There's also the Pibati Café for grab-and-go options as well as The Shack, which hosts private picnics, sunset barbecues and candlelit dinners.

In true resort fashion, this Alila has a spa with four double treatment suites, a 24-hour fitness center and a beachfront infinity pool.

How to book: Right now, cash rates hover around $660 during the wet season (mid-May to November) and $900 or more during the dry season (January through March). However, the move here is to book with points, considering Hyatt's favorable redemptions. Award nights cost between 25,000 and 35,000 points at this Category 7 World of Hyatt property.

An all-new Hilton

(Photo courtesy of Hilton)

Hilton's flagship brand just opened a stunning new property in the Maldives that has us counting our Hilton Honors points: the Hilton Maldives Amangiri Resort & Spa, the fourth Hilton property in the nation.

Just a 20-minute speedboat ride from the international airport in Malé, travelers don't have to worry about connecting via seaplane to get there. Plus, they don't have to worry about going hungry, as the property boasts six bars and restaurants (venues include a "cocktail lab" where mixologists handcraft bespoke drinks, a beachside snack bar, a Champagne and gin bar — my kinda place! — and a romantic upscale restaurant serving sustainable seafood).

When the food coma hits, guests can relax in one of 109 beach and overwater villas, all of which have a pool and bathtub with ocean views. Is there any better way to use points than for a bungalow over the crystal clear waters of paradise? Probably not. If there is, it might just be for a hydrating body wrap or facial at the luxe but laidback Amangiri Spa.

How to book: Right now, you can snag a Hilton Honors member cash rate of $793 for a one-bedroom overwater villa, but those rates jump up to well over $1,000 a night during the busy season in January. Award nights start at 110,000 points.

The Conrad's new look

(Photo courtesy of Hilton)

A little more than 25 years after the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island changed the resort game in the Maldives, the iconic property got a stunning refresh — and I personally cannot wait to see the changes. Earlier this year Hilton shared photos of the renovation, including new interiors of the overwater villas in the adults-only portion of the island. Other changes to the resort include a refresh of the all-day buffet alongside the Rangali Bar and the open-air restaurant, Vilu; a new teen's club and an updated kid's club; a new gym and dive center; and a totally refreshed overwater spa.

(Photo courtesy of Hilton)

And don't worry, the most iconic portions of the resort are still very much there: The Muraka, the world's first underwater villa and Ithaa, the underwater restaurant.

How to book: Award nights at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island start at 120,000 points for a beach villa but cost easily more than 400,000 points for an overwater villa, which is a premium room reward. For cash rates, you can snag a beach villa during the low seasons for $779 per night. However, when things get busy during the dry season, you're looking at more than $1,600 a night — but at least that rate gets you an overwater villa.

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Featured image by VRX Studios
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
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5XEarn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
5XEarn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

    Earn 80,000 Points
  • Annual Fee

    $695
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

Sometimes it's worth a large investment to reap the benefits of a great credit card. That's exactly the case with the Amex Platinum card. In exchange for the annual fee, you'll unlock access to the Amex Membership Rewards program that let you access airline and hotel transfer partners, along with new lifestyle and travel credits. This card is also incredibly rewarding for travel purchases, helping you rack up a ton of Membership Rewards points for your next award trip.

Pros

  • The current welcome offer on this card is quite lucrative. TPG values it at $1,600.
  • This card comes with a long list of benefits, including access to Centurion Lounges, complimentary elite status with Hilton and Marriott, at least $500 in assorted annual statement credits and so much more. (Enrollment required for select benefits.)
  • The Amex Platinum comes with access to a premium concierge service that can help you with everything from booking hard-to-get reservations to finding destination guides to help you plan out your next getaway.

Cons

  • The high annual fee is only worth it if you’re taking full advantage of the card’s benefits. Seldom travelers may not get enough value to warrant the cost.
  • Outside of the current welcome bonus, you’re only earning higher rewards on specific airfare and hotel purchases, so it’s not a great card for other spending categories.
  • The annual airline fee statement credit can be complicated to take advantage of compared to the broader travel credits offered by competing premium cards.
  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • Get $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings, which requires a minimum two-night stay, through American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Audible, Disney+, The Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The New York Times. Enrollment required.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Cover the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card. Cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax. Plus Ups are excluded.
  • American Express has expanded The Centurion® Network to include 40+ Centurion Lounge and Studio locations worldwide. There are even more places your Platinum Card® can get you complimentary entry and exclusive perks.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one select qualifying airline.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only.
  • Get up to $300 back per calendar year on the Equinox+ digital fitness app, or eligible Equinox club memberships when you pay with your Platinum Card. Enrollment required. Learn more.
  • Breeze through security with CLEAR® lanes available at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your membership when you use your Card. Learn more.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees