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8 May 2022 | All Blogs, Destination, Experience

In this blog post, you’ll find out more about the Maldivian icon’s legacy story:

Baros is the essence of the Maldives, offering elegance and comfort with beautiful beach and overwater villas, floating on a crystal-turquoise lagoon with breath-taking views and beautiful sunsets. Life at Baros has forever been an exercise in harmony. Over decades of operation, we have always cared deeply for our island home, continuously working to preserve the natural environment. From the lush jungle heart to our world-class coral house reef, Baros has remained a quintessential tropical paradise since its opening in December 1973, almost 50 years ago.

A genuine pioneer of tourism, Baros was the third resort to open in the Maldives. Rooted in authenticity, Baros is uniquely Maldivian – owned by Universal Enterprises Pvt Ltd and operated by Universal Resorts, a Maldivian family company that has played an integral role in the continued success of the tourism industry in the Maldives.

Baros’s beach rooms

At Baros you feel deeply connected to nature. Initially the island was a working coconut plantation, and the coconut palm is revered as a life force – known as the ‘tree of heaven’ – it offers both sustenance and shelter. Right from the start of development, Baros preserved the coconut palms and other lush vegetation. Today’s dense foliage and cocooning canopy are a wonderful consequence of Baros’s long history of caring for the environment.

Baros’s Captains Bar

In 1973, Baros was established to offer rustic accommodation to European travellers heeding the call of paradise. Baros offered 28 sand floor, coconut thatched-roof cabanas on the beach – fashioned after a Robinson Crusoe style hideaway. The concept of staying on their own secret island, free to do as they wished in an unspoilt, natural environment attracted travellers. They were happy to help the local staff prepare barbecued fish on the beach and spend their evenings gazing at the stars and enjoying the tranquil ambience of Baros. Open only during the European winter months, Baros became known as a beautiful “back to nature” Maldivian resort.

By 1985 Baros had grown in popularity, and the resort offered 40 rooms featuring 10 detached beach rooms built with coral and lime walls, cement floors and coconut thatch roofs.  1992 Brought the global luxury resort trend of overwater bungalows to the Maldives and Baros was the second resort to create 12 overwater villas with private decks over the blue lagoon.

Over the years, careful attention was paid to the Maldives’s architectural heritage, and a rustic style bar was constructed amidst a palm grove designed to resemble a typical Maldivian compound with a central living area and wraparound veranda, shaded and kept cool by a pitched thatched roof. Now called Sails Bar, it has remained in the same place ever since, although it has undergone considerable transformation over the years.

In 2005, Baros underwent a massive reconstruction programme. Local architect Mohamed ‘Sappé’ Shafeeq was tasked with conceptualising an architectural style uniquely Maldivian that would enhance the identity of the island archipelago. Yielding to the beautiful setting,  Sappé designed traditional Maldivian structures made of natural stone, tropical wood and coconut thatch – a shaded oasis in harmony with and open to the spellbinding Indian Ocean. The scale of work included the renovation and refurbishment of 30 overwater villas, the creation of the Lighthouse Restaurant and Lounge with its iconic roof structure evoking the open sails of a dhoni, and the building of the diving school main jetty and the main harbour.

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