The Maldives government announced Wednesday that twenty new resorts will be unveiled next year.
Tourism minister Moosa Zameer told reporters that the government is striving to meet its pledge of opening 50 resorts within five years. While the number of resorts opened over the past two years were fewer than expected, he highlighted the four resorts already unveiled this year with nine more to be opened before the year is out.
“... the target [of opening 50 new resorts] can be achieved by mid-2018. We expect to do even better than that,” said the minister, speaking to reporters during the largest conference on tourism promotion held in the Maldives.
Zameer noted that the government’s current priority is to complete the pending 200 or so unfinished islands for resort development rather than lease new islands.
The new resorts already opened this year are Furaveri Island Resort in Raa atoll, Finolhu in Baa atoll, OZEN by Maadhoo and Malahini Kuda Bandos in Kaafu atoll. Other resorts to be unveiled in 2016 are:
Resort in Lhaviyani atoll Huravalhi island
Cocoon Maldives in Lhaviyani atoll Ookolhufushi island
Kandinma Maldives in Dhaalu atoll
St Regis Maldives in Dhaalu atoll Vommuli island
Soneva Jani in Noonu atoll Medhufaru island
Mercury Maldives Kooddoo in Gaafu Alif atoll Kooddoo
Resort in Baa atoll Milaidhoo island
Four Seasons Voavah in Baa atoll Voavah island
Dhigufaru Island Resort in Baa atoll Dhigufaruvinagandu island
Despite the new resorts being unveiled and developed across the Maldives with a number of internationally renowned brands entering the scene, the tourism industry is currently at a low. The Maldives government had abandoned hope Wednesday of luring the previously projected 1.5 million tourists to the archipelago by the end of this year, revising the number to 1.4 million. Moreover, the number of visitors from China, the largest market for the island nation’s tourism, has also been on a decline.