Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas Launches Stunning Scientific Based Book o…

After two years of extensive research and studies, Anantara  Kihavah Maldives Villas is launching the ‘Wonders of Kihavah,’ – a ground-breaking research-based  publication unveiling the breath-taking beauty and rich biodiversity of the island’s renowned house reef.  This is the first time a resort in the Maldives has undertaken such an extensive reef assessment and  scientific research-based study. 

The publication, combining a scientific approach, compelling narrative, and stunning visuals, showcases the enchanting underwater world of Anantara Kihavah’s pristine marine ecosystem which  was recently crowned as the Best House Reef in the Maldives in the 2023 Travel + Leisure Luxury  Awards Southeast Asia. 

The study, led by Australian Marine Conservation Society’s Director, Dr. Selina Ward, alongside fish  and coral experts, Dr. Storm Martin and Dr. Hannah Markham, all who have conducted extensive  research work on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, worked on the book highlighting the spectacular array  of Kivavah’s marine life and the delicate equilibrium of the reef and the urgent need for marine  conservation efforts, especially in the age of global warming.  

Regarding the hospitality industry’s role, Dr. Ward stresses the utmost importance of urgently reducing  carbon emissions to save coral reefs for the future. “In the period until emissions reductions become  effective, we can work towards enhancing reef resilience, improving water quality, addressing land use  impacts, removing threats such as overfishing and destructive fishing practices, and engaging in  innovative restoration techniques for priority areas, such as beloved locations around resorts and  essential regions serving as sources for coral and fish larvae. There are many innovative restoration  techniques now that require the use of very small volumes of existing corals and targeted use of reared  coral larvae.” 

Dr. Ward emphasises the severity of marine heatwaves as a threat to coral reef health and survival  worldwide, causing bleaching events with potentially devastating consequences. Reef recovery is  possible, but the frequency of heatwaves is critical for their effectiveness. Intensified cyclones, sea level  rise, and ocean acidification also damages and hinder reef growth. 

Among the study’s fascinating findings is the recording of an astounding 300 fish species on Anantara  Kihavah’s house reef, proving its status as the best for snorkelling, where guests can encounter different  species every time they enter the water. The study also includes a comprehensive fish index, indicating  the areas around the island where these species are found. 

Another captivating aspect is that as many as 160 of these species can be observed from the resort’s  SEA Underwater Restaurant in a single day, providing non-divers with a fantastic opportunity to enjoy  the mesmerising fish and coral sights. With different fish species being most active at various times  throughout the day, diners are treated to an ever-changing display through the restaurant’s windows,  making dining at SEA an unforgettable bucket list experience.  

The publication also features the reef’s renowned Yellow Wall, a major attraction for divers and a  contributing factor in making the reef a sought-after destination for diving enthusiasts in the region.  Beyond the resort’s shores, the Baa Atoll offers countless world-class dive sites, and the chance to  swim with manta rays in Hanifaru Bay is a must-try, once-in-a lifetime experience. 

By showcasing the beauty and fragility of Anantara Kihavah’s house reef, “Wonders of Kihavah” aims  to inspire budding conservationists and serve as an inspiration for ongoing marine conservation efforts,  emphasising the need to protect the wonders of Kihavah and other reefs around the world for  generations to come. 

Anantara Kihavah offers a complimentary e-version of the publication for download on their website,  while physical copies are exclusively provided for guests during their villa stay. Take-home copies are  available for purchase at the resort, with a portion of the proceeds allocated to Anantara’s ‘Dollar for  Deeds’ programme, with the resort matching each donation to support marine and coastal protection,  environmental education, and community welfare. 

Discover the underwater realms of Anantara Kihavah and witness the wonders for yourself. Villas start  from USD 1,700++ per night with breakfast and lunch. For more information or to book, call +960 664  4111, visit us at or email [email protected].


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