Bringing you a selection of fabulous food, in equally impressive settings, here's our breakdown of the top restaurants and cafe's to enjoy your Iftar with loved ones this Ramadan.
As we enter the final half of another blessed Ramadan, our focus intensifies on spiritual reflection and acts of worship. While we strive to make the best of this holy month, Ramadan is also a time that brings us closer to our loved ones - and this is perhaps best seen during the time of Iftar, when Muslims break their fasts in the company of their family and friends.
In our culture, the last half of Ramadan brings a rush to make Iftar reservations at the best eats in town, as people hastily grapple for the final chances to hold these special get-togethers. While potlucks are always great - if not better - a scrumptious Iftar buffet to indulge in with your relatives, colleagues or buddies before you head off to prayers is just as enjoyable.
Here, The Edition takes a quick look at some of the best options the Greater Male region has to offer, from newer establishments to well-loved ones.
Iftar Buffet rate per person: MVR 168 (all-inclusive)
Located in the suburb of Villimale, Xie Xie Restaurant boasts a reputation for providing yummy food at affordable prices. With choices from Dhivehi hedhika (short eats), Chinese cuisine and Indian dishes, Xie Xie also offers table services for Iftar at a rate of MVR 187. Moreover, situated on the waterfront of Villimale, Xie Xie's lovely view of the island's harbour and ocean is unique especially among the typically bustling Male' districts.
Iftar Buffet rate per person: MVR 189 - 299 (exclusive of Service Charge + GST)
Calorie Counter is a new establishment, located near Henveiru Stadium, that has quickly become famous amongst both locals and expats as the go-to for healthy but delicious bites. With a bold promise that there is no need to count calories here, this novel restaurant offers a range of set menus for Iftar, including hearty salads, a variety of grilled meats, some choice carbs, and healthy desserts and drinks.
Iftar Buffet rate per person: MVR 215 (exclusive of Service Charge + GST)
Retro Cafe brings you a range of South Asian flavours for your palate, amongst other local favourites, comprising of rice, noodles and curry dishes accompanied by choice veg and non-veg salads, and mouthwatering desserts. Situated close to the now-demolished Henveiru Park, Retro Cafe's cozy and comfortable atmosphere is perfect for family Iftars.
Iftar Buffet rate per person: MVR 249 (exclusive of Service Charge + GST)
Belle Amie Bistro, attached to the 4-star Somerset Hotel in the capital city, bangs out its most mouthwatering Indian menus for Iftar this Ramadan. From biryanis and masalas to vegan dishes, these gastronomical delights are accompanied by a variety of salads and local favourite desserts. Posh and elegant with welcoming staff, Belle Amie is an intimate spot to enjoy Iftar with a loved one.
Iftar Buffet rate per person: MVR 250 (all-inclusive)
One of the most well-established brands in the Maldives, Symphony is an all-time favourite for most citizens of Male. True to its regular menu, Symphony offers an appetizing range of Eastern and Western cuisine for Iftar. With succulent meats, filling rice and noodle dishes, and flavoursome gravies, Ramadan breakfast at this beloved family restaurant is full of local favourites.
Iftar Buffet rate per person: MVR 265 (all-inclusive)
A couple of streets over from the Barbecue Area in the suburb Hulhumale, Alchemist is a popular hang-out amongst the youth. The bistro offers a mix of its popular fast food, along with Asian and Western delights on its Iftar menu. Small but homely, Alchemist is a great choice for a family or group of friends to spend a lovely evening for Iftar.
Iftar Buffet rate per person: MVR 299 (all-inclusive)
A newer name on the gourmet radar, The Keyolhu is a snug restaurant attached to The Aquzz guesthouse by the Hulhumale Beach. The Keyolhu brings an unusual touch to its culinary spread, offering a fusion of European and Maldivian-Mediterranean flavours for Iftar, with its home-made signature rice and chicken dishes, finishing off with melt-in-your-mouth desserts.
Iftar Buffet rate per person: MVR 300 - 359 (exclusive of Service Charge + GST)
The Kitchen opened with a bang earlier this year and has already made a name for itself, famed for its varied selection of gastronomical offerings picked from cuisines found around the world. With a generous menu featuring Western and Eastern flavours in heaping portions, the stylish and spacious Kitchen is ideal for large gatherings, and well worth the splurge.