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Harnessing the Power of the Sun – Kudadoo Maldives Private Island by Hurawalhi
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A tiny adults-only resort in the Maldives has been dubbed the best new luxury resort of 2019 and harnesses the power of the sun to create an idyllic and eco-conscious getaway. Located in the Lhayivani Atoll, Kudadoo Maldives Private Island by Hurawalhi features luxurious 15 villas, each built with eco-conscious materials including wood from forests in Indonesia, New Zealand, Canada, as well as locally-sourced timber from the Maldives. A central hub known as The Retreat, which houses an exclusive spa and wellness center, features a photovoltaic roof covered with almost a thousand solar panels which generate 300kW of electricity. The striking roof not only stands as an icon of the resort but also provides 100% power, including eco-cooling and lighting systems throughout the retreat.

Photo credit: Kudadoo Maldives Private Island

Designed by designed by Yuji Yamazaki Architecture and recognized as one of Architectural Digests “Hottest Designed Hotels” in 2019, Kudadoo Maldives Private Island provides the ultimate luxury experience with one-or two-bedroom residences nestled in the sand lagoon featuring Tasmanian Oak floors, private outdoor decks, private infinity plunge pools, and personal butlers.

The Retreat offers an integrated wellness experience which includes a Himalayan Salt Room, a nail bar, steam room, sauna and treatment rooms. It also has an infinity pool, a fully-equipped gym with a personal trainer, yoga instructor, and meditation guru and guests can enjoy complimentary signature spa treatments throughout their stay.

Meaning ‘small island’ (kuda means small, doo for island) in the local language, Kudadoo was previously a five-acre deserted natural island before being transformed into an energy-efficient luxury resort by Swedish entrepreneur Lars Petre. Petre first heard about the Maldives in the mid-1980s when he was visiting Sri Lanka and later returned to the beautiful Indian Ocean island nation with a Scandinavian tour group. Now, over 30 years later, Petre, 63, owns nine resorts, 12 spas, and six diving centers in the Asian country.

Solar Powered Luxury

The three-hectare island retreat is supplied with electricity by a thousand solar panels set into a photovoltaic roof, which not only stands as an icon of the resort but also provides eco-cooling and lighting systems throughout the resort.

Designed by Swedish company Solarwork, the solar panel system features a total of 984 panels covering 1,643 square meters (17,685 square feet) on the roof of The Retreat and cost in the region of US$2 million, with the solar battery alone, which was built in France by Socomec, costing US$1 million.

Photo credit: Kudadoo Maldives Private Island

The island also has a water-bottling plant to reduce its plastic consumption – there are no plastic water bottles or straws – and the water is desalinated through reverse osmosis. There is also a collection of greenhouses to produce fresh produce for guests, among other efforts to be sustainable and eco-friendly. The island is home to only native plants and trees, which are strategically placed near the shoreline to prevent erosion.

In total, Kudadoo is estimated to reduce its carbon footprint by 400,000 tons per year.

Kudadoo Maldives Private Island now numbers as one of many luxury hotel offerings in the Maldives, including the world’s first underwater hotel villa, where a single night’s stay starts at US$3,800 per night, while an exclusive, complete island rental is available from US$80,000 per night.

Photo credit: Kudadoo Maldives Private Island

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