Soneva Jani

3 mins read

Soneva Jani, the newest link in the nature-inspired Soneva chain, opened its doors in 2016.

Set in Medhufaru in Noonu Atoll, in a stunning 5.6km lagoon, Soneva Jani has just 25 villas with only one on land. It’s one of the lowest density resorts in the world and arguably the pinnacle of luxury boutique islands. If privacy and seclusion matter, this is definitely the place to be.

Medhufaru boasts 150-acres, the largest resort island in the Maldives, and is neighboured by four pristine islands in the vast lagoon. Sonu Shivdasani, CEO and founder of the Soneva brand, contrasts Soneva Jani with their flagship property Soneva Fushi: “It has been said that if Soneva Fushi was its own island, Soneva Jani is its own ‘atoll’, as it’s actually a small archipelago of five islands within the Medhufaru lagoon. My wife Eva and I spent many years travelling the world and searching for the perfect spot to open our next resort after Soneva Kiri. When we saw this lagoon, with the bluest water we had ever seen, we knew this was the place.”

Soneva Jani has all the mod-cons you could want from an ultra-luxe property and much more. Sandblasted pine decks and river gum tiles decorate the villas’ exteriors while the interiors are made from subtly weathered woods and natural materials in a palette of white, pastel greens and mauves. Interiors are the work of Soneva co-founder Eva Shivdasani. 

Each villa has a 13 metre pool, a walk-in minibar, a dining area on the top deck, and three different glass panelled areas on the floor to observe the lush world beneath the waves. For those with a playful bent, many villas have water slides winding from the top deck right down to the water. Yet, perhaps nothing beats the roofs in the master bedrooms, which roll back to reveal the starry night at the press of a button.

Here, cycling is encouraged and all guests have bicycles or tricycles with which they can explore the connected islands and wheel down different cycle paths. 

Soneva Jani houses the largest overwater structure in the Maldives, The Gathering, home to the resort’s dining outlets, the spa, library, retail area, wine cellar and children’s den. 

Additional island villas are set to appear over the course of the year. They’ll be inconspicuous, nestled in the island’s greenery a few steps from the beach. Even with those, the Soneva Jani ‘archipelago’ will endure as one of Earth’s most private places.