Conrad Maldives Rangali Island resort opens first underwater hotel residence

The Conrad Maldives Rangali Island resort opened the first-ever underwater hotel residence, The Muraka, in Maldives. The villa spans two stories above and below the Indian Ocean.

Ahmed Saleem, a director at Crown Company, was the chief architect and designer of the residence. 

Muraka means “coral” in the local language of Dhivehi.

The $15-million villa, sitting 16 feet below the Indian Ocean, has two decks. The lower deck and the top deck are connected by a spiral staircase.

The top deck has a twin-size bedroom, an ocean-facing bathroom, a fitness center, butler’s quarters, an integrated living room, kitchen and bar. There is also an infinity pool, a private jetty and an outdoor deck. 

Meanwhile, the lower deck has a living space, bedroom and bathroom within an all-glass atmosphere that frames 180-degree panoramic views of marine life. 

Muraka, which can accommodate a total of nine guests, was constructed on land in Singapore and then transported to Maldives. Crafted using acrylic from Japanese aquarium manufacturer Nippura, the 600-ton structure is sealed with a Shin-Etsu Silicone sealant and secured to the ocean floor with concrete pylons to ensure the structure remains unmoored even by rough tides.

Designed by Crown Company, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island resort ws built by New Zealand-based M.J. Murphy.

Conrad Maldives Rangali Island also enhanced its Deluxe Beach Villas with an $8.3 million redesign. Designed by Muraka's design collaborator Yuji Yamazaki, the villas now have natural and understated interiors illuminated with natural light, and a Japanese-inspired garden with outdoor seating area.

Photo credit: Justin Nicholas