Raffles Maldives Meradhoo has appointed Olivier Larcher as the resort’s General Manager, ahead of its opening.
A native of France, Larcher brings with him over two decades of experience in luxury hospitality, having worked with renowned international hospitality brands such as Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts, Hilton Hotels and Resorts, and Dalian Wanda Group. His career has taken him to countries such as South Africa, Morocco, China and Bora Bora.
Prior to taking up the General Manager’s post at Raffles Maldives Meradhoo in April, Larcher served as the General Manager of Sofitel Foshan in China for two years — his first posting with AccorHotels.
“We are excited to be launching AccorHotels’ first flagship Raffles property in the Maldives and welcome Larcher aboard,” Gilles Cretallaz, Vice President of Operations, Luxury Brands for Upper Southeast Asia, Northeast Asia and the Maldives at AccorHotels, was quoted in a statement, as saying.
“He demonstrates an immense passion for refined resorts in unique and cultural destinations and is a strategic new member of our executive team in the Maldives.”
The French multinational hotel group took over the management of the existing resort on the island of Meradhoo from Dubai-based hospitality group Jumeirah in September, with plans to reposition the luxury resort under the iconic Raffles Hotels and Resorts brand.
Set to open in late 2018 after major enhancements to the existing Dhevanafushi Maldives Luxury Resort Managed by AccorHotels, Raffles Maldives Meradhoo Resort boasts 21 island villas and 16 ocean villas with private pools, three restaurants, a scenic cocktail bar and an array of facilities and activities to relax, rejuvenate and reinvigorate the body, mind and spirit.
These facilities include an award winning luxury spa, overwater fitness centre, yoga programmes, water sports, private dining options, 24-hour butler and private chef service, along with snorkelling and diving at its finest. The resort’s PADI-certified dive centre offers adventures through the wonders of some of most breath-taking coral reefs in the world.
A 55-minute flight from the main Velana International Airport and a 15-minute speedboat transfer can access the resort, located on Meradhoo island in Gaafu Alifu atoll.
A newcomer to the Maldives booming tourism industry, AccorHotels is on a major expansion drive, with three existing properties and two under development in the island nation.
Mercure Maldives Kooddoo Resort, the only resort in the Maldives with direct access to an airport, welcomed the first group of tourists in August. The resort, located in the southern Gaafu Alif atoll, was officially inaugurated in late September.
Meanwhile, Fairmont Maldives Sirru Fen Fushi officially opened in April with 112 luxury villas, a 200-metre infinity pool, and Maldives’ first coral regeneration project in the form of an Underwater Art Installation by celebrated underwater naturalist and artist Jason deCaires Taylor.
AccorHotels has also signed up to manage another resort being developed in Gaafu Alif atoll.
Set to open next year, the Pullman Maldives Maamutaa resort is a traditional ‘one island, one resort’ property located a 10-minute speedboat ride away from its sister property, the Mercure Maldives Kooddoo Resort. The five star resort will offer upscale modern facilities such as two swimming pools, a sunset bar overlooking the lagoon, a luxury spa, a state-of-the-art fitness centre, a kids club, beach playground, tennis courts, gourmet restaurants, organic gardens, a dive centre and a water sports centre.
Alongside Raffles, Pullman, Sofitel, Swissôtel and MGallery, Fairmont Hotels and Resorts is part of the luxury brands portfolio of AccorHotels. With 75 properties in 24 countries, hotels under the Fairmont banner offer guests an extraordinary place that is created by combining unique architecture and structure, expressive decor and artistry, magnificent features and exceptional service all in one great location.