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  • Writer's picturePeter Antonucci

Raafushi Island, Maldives

Friday | February 20, 2015


This beautiful Friday morning, we attended a Port Talk given by his Excellency Alain St. Ange, the Seychelles Minister of Tourism. His talk was exemplary, both in terms of the substance and the beautiful DVD he displayed during his talk. As a result, I am very much looking forward to our time in Seychelles.

I headed off to Raafushi Island to participate in the ship’s Beach Day. Because the water was too rough to paddleboard, I took advantage of the fierce wind and took a Hobi cat for a lovely and invigorating sale. When I returned it to the beach, I donned my snorkel and glens and explored the reefs around the island. While doing so, I made the first practical use of my new underwater Sony Walkman headset. It was really a neat sensation listening to Jimmy Buffet while I was exploring the water. Around a nearby reef, I saw thousands of fish – angelfish, parrotfish, clown fish, rays, and turtles. I also made extensive use of my underwater Go Pro for the first time and the results were wonderful. The video definitely turned out much better than the stills.

I returned to the ship whereupon I changed and boarded the tender for what turned out to be a quite lengthy ride back to the Chenin Blanc resort. The previous day, so many of our fellow residents told us this was one of the finest resorts in the world we felt obligated to get an actual tour of the resort. Our review – the topography, layout and structure is definitely world class. But the service, attention to detail and actual facilities are not even at a B+ level. There really was not much for the guests to do other than eat and enjoy water sports. Oh yes, the over arching criticism lied with the extraordinary prices charged. For example, a room is $4,000 a night; cocktails range between $30 and $45 a drink; bathing suits started at $600; and there was nothing in the jewelry store for less than $65,000 (and they had some pieces north of $400,000). Just absurd.

We had a terrific dinner on the flap – that is what we call the platform that drops down from the stern. I enjoyed the chef's special lobster mac and cheese which will be coming off the menu soon. But this was no normal mac & cheese. The chef used small egg elbow noodles with a unique cheese and large chunks of lobster meat. But the absolute highlight of the evening was the after dinner show. For close to an hour, we were teased and entertained by a school of 15 to 20 dolphin who danced and rolled and fed off the back of the ship. The lights from the stern had attracted thousands of small fish and the dolphins were having the way with them. On occasion, we even saw phosphorus flying fish go through the air and the dolphins seems to skip along the top of the water in chase. So very remarkable.

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