Luxury resort operator, Soneva, has announced its line-up for the holiday season at Soneva Fushi and Soneva Jani in the Maldives, as well as Soneva Kiri in Thailand. This year, the highlights include dinners hosted by the two-Michelin-starred chef Ronan Kervarrec at Soneva Fushi as well as a soccer camp led by former professional soccer player Mikael Silvestre. Other events include tastings, pop-up dinners, snorkeling with manta rays, wellness classes and treasure hunts for kids.
At Soneva Fushi, guests can begin the Christmas festivities with a Champagne breakfast on a deserted sandbank. On Christmas Eve, a sandbank cocktail party will be held, complete with a traditional Maldivian Boduberu performance, which will be followed by a gala dinner with entertainers from around the world.
On Christmas Day, a buffet lunch will be held at Mihiree Mithaa, followed by another sandbank cocktail party that will take place that night. Chef Ronan Kervarrec is set to host dinners for a limited number of guests on select days, including Christmas and Boxing Day. Chef Kervarrec began working at the Hostellerie de Plaisance in 2013 as an Executive Chef and has since worked in the kitchens of the Chateau de la Chèvre d'Or, a member of Relais & Châteaux, and the "Grandes Tables du Monde."
On New Year's Eve, guests can experience Soneva's Food Journey, taking guests through multiple dining destinations, accompanied by performances from aerialists, acrobats, opera music and more. The main dining area will be at Out of the Blue, Soneva Fushi's newest dining outlet, where live cooking stations and more entertainment await. From there, guests can head to Cinema Paradiso for dessert and music leading up to the countdown to 2019 on Cinema Paradiso's jetty. The New Year's Eve experience starts at $2,000 per person.
Special this year, Soneva Fushi will also host a soccer camp for kids and teenagers with former Arsenal and Manchester United player, Mikael Silvestre. The five-day camp will be held from December 20-24, 2018. The camp will consist of a few hours of training per day, with each day covering a different technical course: Psychological (confidence, being safe, positive feedback, having fun, success, and basic decision making); Technical (dribbling, running with the ball, touching the ball with direction, change of speed, hand-eye coordination, general movements, jumping, skipping, falling down and getting up); and Social/Emotional (listening, communicating, celebrating, team interaction, making new friends).
On the final day of the camp, a match will be held for all participants of the course to join. The camp is priced at $1,000 per person for the five-day course.
At Soneva Jani, guests can get into the spirit of Christmas on December 23 by decorating the resort's giant tree on North Beach. There will be of rum, tequila, sake and Champagne tastings throughout the holiday, along with more wellness-focused offerings such as yoga sessions, massage workshops and water sports. Kids can partake in Soneva's Christmas treasure hunt, sandcastle building contest and gingerbread decorating.
On Christmas Eve, there will be a cocktail party and a buffet with a performance by the Shiuz band. On Christmas Day, a brunch will be served at the Gathering with live performances, followed by a visit from Santa Claus. For New Year's Eve, a Food Journey around the resort takes guests on a culinary adventure, offering dishes from around the world. The night culminates in the countdown party on Zuhair's Beach (priced at $1,800 per person).
Throughout the holiday season, Soneva Kiri will host Indian, Arabic and Japanese pop-up dinners, guided snorkeling excursions, cooking classes, sushi and vegan master classes and more. Christmas Eve begins with cocktails and drinks on the jetty, followed by dinner that includes turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, a full carvery station, vegetables and herbs from the organic gardens and mulled wine. A “catch of the day” barbecue lunch will take place on the white sands of North Beach on Christmas Day, followed by European or Asian themed dinners at The View and Chef Benz at Benz's, respectively.
The New Year's Eve Food Journey will treat guests to international cuisine, followed by the countdown to 2019 on the jetty where guests can dance to music spun by a DJ. For the younger Soneva guests, there will be a Christmas treasure hunt at the Den, a tour to the nearby Reindeer Island to see the local deer, and a New Year's party held exclusively for kids.