How would you like to find yourself transported from the mountains of Colorado to a luxurious ARK ROYAL live-aboard in the Maldives? Drop by our booth at the Colorado Dive Show, Colorado Dive Show September 24 – 25, Crowne Plaza at the Denver Intl. Airport and ENTER YOUR NAME IN OUR FREE DRAW!
For more info visit www.coloradodiveshow.com
Here’s the scoop on the Liveaboard…8 days 7 nights
Head of Scuba Travel International, Ken Scarbrough, devoted the month of May to inspecting and evaluating the live-aboards available and identifying the very best for our customers.
The Ark Royal is the top liveaboard boat in the Maldives. Delivering a luxury experience at a great price, the Ark Royal is only one year old. There are six cabins with side by side twin beds, two double bed cabins, and a master suite with a Jacuzzi tub and a king sized bed. The master suite is the size of a regular hotel room – and larger than some hotel rooms in Male.
Life on the Live-aboard
The Ark Royal Experience: Luxury Live-aboard in the Maldives
The Ark Royal offers every amenity that you’d expect from your luxury liveaboard experience. Spacious cabins, private bathrooms, and flat screen TVs in each cabin with over 200 on demand English movies to watch when you’re enjoying down time between some of the most superlative diving in the Indian ocean.
Ark Royal Sets a New Standard for Maldives Live-aboards
Experienced travelers will gasp with shock when stepping into the Ark Royal salon. While the boat accommodates 18 divers, the salon could comfortable seat many more. It’s the largest salon we’ve ever seen – proof positive that the Ark Royal crew truly understands that liveaboard diving is about the diving AND the living! This is simply one demonstration of how the best dive operators understand the evolving needs of today’s divers. Several new boats are currently being built for the Maldives. The STI dive team will be personally inspecting them to see how they compare to the Ark Royal.
Bring Your Appetite!
Talented cooks make every meal on the Ark Royal a delight. Every meal is served buffet style, so you can select what you find the most appealing. A wonderful mix of Maldavian food will please the adventurous eater, revealing new taste sensations with every bite. Beef, fish, chicken, vegetarian entrees, and pasta are all delicious options. Copious amounts of fresh fruit enhance the tropical dining experience. Greet the sunrise with eggs cooked to order – truly the breakfast of champions! End the day with cake and coffee or tea; a little bit of elegance that you just won’t find on perfectly adequate boats.
Dine in the air conditioned salon, or take your meals outside while enjoying the amazing view. An extensive wine cellar adds another level of bliss to the entire experience – and if you really want to gild the lily, visit the spa and book a session with one of the two talented masseuses. Diving really works your muscles – let these talented folks work the knots out! It’s the ultimate in relaxation.
Keeping Connected: Cell Phone and Internet Connectivity in the Maldives
While we say that we go on vacation to get away from it all, the truth is that many of us like the luxury of being able to connect with the rest of the world whenever we choose. During Ken’s stay on the Ark Royal, he had reception for this Blackberry about 90 percent of the time. Many of the islands in the region have cell towers with decent signal. Prefer to log on with your laptop? Use the ship’s modem for $10 a day. Connectivity is not quite as great as that as you can receive with your cell phone – Ken reports being able to connect approximately 80percent of the time.
Diving in the Maldives
The Dhoni Experience
Diving in the Maldives is all done by dhonis, which are smaller boats of 65 ft that transport divers out to the best sites. The Ark Royal dhoni is custom made, with lots of room for divers – and all their gear and cameras! There are 2 regular compressors aboard, and a membrane for Nitrox – which you’ll be pleased to discover is free! Don’t worry about compressor noise – a drawback all too common on perfectly adequate ships – because the dhoni stays behind the mother ship. Enjoy the ease of leaving your gear on the dhoni, with your own basket to stow mask, fins, computers, and other things you’d like to leave on the boat.
Ark Royal is notable for keeping their dhoni as clean and attractive as the mother ship. It’s unfortunate to have to point this out, but there are dhonis in the Maldives that are very dirty, with oily floors and a grimy appearance that’s simply not in keeping with the luxury dive experience. Small dhonis make for uncomfortable boat rides to the dive sites, detracting from the enjoyment. Ark Royal’s dhoni is another story entirely: riding to and back from the dive site is comfortable and clean. The Ark Royal crew greets you with fresh fruit and towels after every dive. Without a doubt, the crew is one of the best and is consistently very attentive to the needs of their divers.
Land Based Diving in the Maldives
Land based diving options in the Maldives are available. Ideal for those travelers who can enjoy the Maldives for a week, as most resorts require six night minimums – but don’t count this option out if you have less time. Aside from the major holidays, it is sometimes possible to arrange shorter stays. We have partnered with one of the best inbound tour operators in the Maldives to set up all transfers, any extra flights, and overnight accommodations.
You Owe It To Yourself To Go With the Very Best
Scuba Travel International has long been known as the experts in liveaboard diving. We have become increasingly selective about what boats we work with. We’ve seen the results as our customers have their first Ultimate Dive Experience – and come back time and again, because they know our competition simply cannot meet our standard. We only connect our customers with the boats and services we would personally want for our own vacations. We spend the time to find the right boats, personally inspecting them regularly to ensure that your expectations are met and exceeded, every time. We go ourselves, because we know every website says their boat is the best. They can’t all be the best – we go and objectively assess boats to determine which ones really are capable of providing the very best dive experience.
Call or email us today to book your trip to the Maldives, you will not be disappointed.