A review of the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island – on Hilton points (Part 3)

This is part three of our reader’s review of the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island focusing on Hilton Honors Member benefits and the restaurants and bars.

Part 1 can be found here.  Part 2 is here.

If you are reading this via email, you won’t have receive Part 4.  Click here to read it directly on the HFP website.

Hilton Honors Member Benefits – Gold and Diamond

Complimentary Breakfast (7-11am)

Breakfast is served in two locations. There’s a huge variety of Buffet choices at Atoll on Rangalifinolhu or a mixture of a more selected buffet and à la carte at Vilu at Rangali island.

Complimentary Afternoon Tea (4-5pm)

Comprises of sandwiches, cakes, scones, biscuits and a large selection of teas. This experience was previously complimentary just for repeat guests, but has now been extended to Hilton Honors Gold and Diamond members. It’s usually held at Mandhoo, but can sometimes move to Vilu depending on the prevailing weather and/or the number of Hilton Honors Elite members at the resort.

Complimentary Happy Hour at Vilu (5-6pm)

Located at Vilu Restaurant this was previously open to all guests on Rangali island Water Villas, but is now exclusively for Gold and Diamond members.

A plate of 4 light appetisers is also served to each guest just after they order their first drink.

From Vilu looking down the beach you can see the Quiet Zone and the bridge.

Managers reception at Quiet Zone

The invites for this event are left at your accommodation the day before. It is usually for Gold and Diamond members and special guests. It normally occurs on a Tuesday (approx 6:30pm onwards).

Recommendations

1/2 price Happy Hour – this is open to all guests and runs from 5-7pm at the Quiet Zone and Rangali Bar. We visited each on alternate evenings after Happy Hour at Vilu.

Quiet Zone is a short walk down the beach from Vilu.

The Rangali Bar is on the other side of the bridge on the main island, great for sunsets.

Our favourite cocktail was the coffee inspired Affogato, more like a desert than a drink.

Here’s a sunset with George the Heron from the Rangali Bar.

Here’s a couple of sunrise photos from Mandhoo restaurant on the Spa Retreat.

And here’s couple of the sunrise from the Infinity Pool at the Quiet Zone.

Breakfast – Whilst the buffet selection at Atoll is fantastic, we preferred eating à la carte at Vilu. As we enjoy an early morning snorkel first, we’d arrive at about 10:30am and take our time enjoying the lovely setting. I tried the excellent Oysters Rockefeller on my birthday with sparkling Rosé.

Dining out – As featured in my previous review, our favourites are still Sunset Grill and Mandhoo.

Sunset Grill 

Steak and Lobster at Sunset Grill.

Mandhoo (menu – pdf)

Seared Tuna at Mandhoo.

Entertainment

Maldivian themed night is normally on a Monday

Rewarding Hilton Honors Loyalty

Given the appeal of such a special place and the enthusiasm I’ve demonstrated in my reviews, you might imagine the resort has its collection of regular repeat visitors.

For such loyal guests that meet a special set of criteria there are exclusive benefits such as the Sunset Cruise. 

Point Redemptions (and other insider info)

I learnt that Hilton Honors point redemptions currently account for approximately 1 in every 6 bookings at the resort.

I’ve read recent newspaper articles that highlight proposals for substantial foreign investment to develop many new resorts across the Maldives.  There’s even rumours of plans to develop a Waldorf Astoria on a new large resort spanning three islands in the next few years.  I also heard a guest speculate on the possibility of an existing hotel resort rebranding as a DoubleTree.

With this future projected level of increased competition, based on the conversations I had with Conrad staff, I feel the amount of Hilton Honors points required for a redemption in a King Beach Villa will remain at 95,000 points / night for some time yet.

I recommend staying for at least 5 nights but ideally longer to give yourself time to unwind.

Our previous stay was 10 nights on points, this time we stayed 12 nights using a Hilton Visa Certificate each and 760,000 Hilton Honors points.

Note the additional Extras – Resort charges are subject to ++ (“Plus, Plus”). There is a service charge and resort tax that equates to a non-trivial 23.2% extra above advertised prices.

Part 4 of this review includes, among other things, some amazing scuba diving photos!

(Want to earn more hotel points?  Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Promos’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

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A review of the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island - on Hilton points (Part 4)
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Comments

  1. Just a note on the Additional extras, ie ++

    One of the powerful strengths of using points is that it means you only pay taxes for your incidental spend whilst at the resort.

    Therefore you avoid a fair amount of tax that you would have to pay on top of your room rate for a cash booking.

    A stay on points also excludes you from the bed tax of $6 pppn.

    So whilst it’s still a lot of points for a stay, considering the benefits and the total cash it would cost to stay, I feel staying on points is very good value.

    I believe this tip is also applicable to a few other properties in the Hilton group that charge resort taxes.

    • So ++ is 23.2%, then $6pppn and the seaplane fee of $560pp on top of the room rate? And it’s all in resort dining and activities. Crikey…

      This is the kind of thing I read HfP for. It’s too much in cash but in points it’s possible.

      • Correct, I wouldn’t be flying business class and staying in such fabulous places unless I’d won the lottery.

        This is why I feel grateful to Rob, Anika and HFPs! 🙂

  2. 12 nights. 2 certificates leaves 10 nights. Isn’t that 950000 points?

    • 5th night free brings it down

    • As Boi mentions.
      Gold & Diamond get 5 nights for the price of 4.

      95000/ night * 8 = 760000 for 10 nights 🙂

      • Thanks anon,

        just one question, 760,000 is quite a large points haul, could I be cheeky and ask roughly what method u used to generate all the points? do u a lot of Hilton nites for work?

        • Wouldn’t be a bad idea to buy 95k points (when there’s a bonus offer on) and use them to book rewards nights?

      • Tilly71 says:

        And old silvers!

  3. Broadly speaking what’s the cost of food at rangali?

    • At the best restaurants it’s pricey (Which considering the resources needed to ship out and cook top quality food is to be expected)

      We were never that hungry in the eves, so when we did dine out with friends or for special occasions we only had main courses.

      With the heat, many days after sandwiches at afternoon tea, a belly full of beer at free Happy Hour & then 1/2 price cocktails with nibbles was plenty for us.

  4. If me, my wife and my parents each had a voucher, is it possible to use all 4 vouchers for me and my wife? I.e can we use my parents’ vouchers?

    I was thinking of doing:

    Sat and Sun – vouchers
    Mon to Thur – points
    Friday – 5th night free
    Sat and Sun – vouchers

    So I would only need 380k points and 4 vouchers. (95k points x 4). Would this work?

    I have gold status (via a match), but no points so would buy them when there’s a 50% offer on the points.

    • Not sure on the T&Cs, but don’t you need to stay as the Certificate owner? Phone Hilton Honors to ask?

  5. Peter K says:

    I’m sure I read a couple of years ago that the free breakfast at the Rangali Resort was removed for Gold and Platinum guests. Has it been reinstated or is this separate from the MYWAY benefits?

    • Tilly71 says:

      Still free for gold & diamonds!

    • Breakfast has been free for Gold and Diamonds for years.

      What’s new is Afternoon Tea also being Free. 🙂

      And the Free happy hour is now exclusive to Gold & Diamonds.. 😀 (hic)

  6. Going back to TripRep’s downgrade, it seems to me that a regulation should be brought in to the effect that if downgrades are necessitated by the airline overselling the flight, the holder/s of the most recently purchased ticket/s should be downgraded. This is very unlikely to be an avios seat, and would therefore make airlines much more reluctant to oversell. Otherwise, there is no incentive whatsoever for airlines not to sell redemption seats from under the passenger, as it were!

    • Genghis says:

      Airlines need to oversell. It’s how they then treat affected passengers that needs to be effectively handled

      • I guess I just don’t think like a CEO – if Tesco have sold out of something then you can’t have it, regardless of how many people bought it just before you got there..!

        You’re right, though, about 15 years ago I was on a Delta flight from Atlanta to Miami and they were offering 500 dollars in vouchers to bump people onto the next flight. There were numerous volunteers – we would have gone for it but didn’t think we’d get the opportunity to use the vouchers being Brits. I don’t know if they still do this, it seemed a good incentive as the vouchers were worth much more than the cost of the flight, and the passengers being bumped off were getting a replacement flight as well.

        • The difference is at Tesco when they purchase the food it leaves the store. With airlines people purchase the product but a certain number won’t then actually make use of it and with them being on a flexible fare the airline has ended up leaving a seat empty. I can therefore appreciate the need for them to oversell a percentage (which in fairness they’re normally pretty good at estimating) – however when they do muck up they need to treat customers much much better. This should start by asking for volunteers and recompensing them appropriately, not just bumping down a 241 voucher holder…

        • @mkcol says:

          I was on a TP run last week in the USA & there were several instances of American offering $500 in travel vouchers for customers to fly later in the day. Unfortunately my travel plans were too tightly connected to be able to take advantage, but in future if they weren’t I’d be right up at the gate offering myself up.