Located in a secluded corner in Raa Atoll, You & Me by Cocoon opened up their beautiful resort to guests earlier this year. With the right mix of island chic meets rustic, You & Me exclusively caters to adults and offers an intimate experience. It took just 45 minutes by seaplane to arrive directly at the resort and to be whisked away to the reception where you can sip some bubbly with fine white sand beneath your feet.

With 109 villas scattered through the island and over the calm lagoon, the resort has a bit of something to offer for everyone. It was a pleasure to stay at one of the semi-detached Manta Villas on the sunrise side of the lagoon. The interior is luxurious but oozed rustic vibes. With a king-sized bed that rivals the comfort of many other hotels, polished wooden floors, sliding doors that open up to a deck overlooking the vast lagoon, and rain showers that open up to the deck, this villa is made for two people.

It was a surprise to discover the dining scene on the island too. Buffets are expected, as normally on most resorts especially in the Maldives. Not here at You & Me though. Lunch was at the Rising Sun, a Japanese Teppanyaki bar that was as much entertainment as it was a good lunch. Chef Karlo showed me his Teppanyaki skills and it was a delight to discover that he had a knack for dancing back home in the Philippines too. The team has a lot of soul here and they always have a good story to tell.

Dinner was at Sands, with a specially put together menu of the Chef’s favourite. With bresaola and arugula salads, a seafood fettuccine, grilled red snapper with a side of delicate vegetables, it was a lovely evening filled with live music.

The after-dinner entertainment on this special evening was an extravagant affair at the Green Carpet, the perfect garden restaurant overlooking the pool and beach. I was lucky enough to be on the resort on the night of the grand opening. Guests were treated to a cabaret style of entertainment with talented artists flying in from all corners of the world. With the team handing out hors d’oeuvres, pouring your drinks of choice, music and dance all around you, it felt like a true celebration of a resort that had a lot in store for their guests.

Alex Azzola, the Managing Director of Cocoon Investments shared a few heartfelt words with the guests about the property. Exactly two years after the opening of Cocoon Maldives, it was with a lot of passion and dedication that they were able to open You & Me by Cocoon. He thanked the guests for the positive vibes, for the 300 attentive staff that took impeccable care of all the guests, and the support that the group has received for them to transform this virgin island into an intimate haven.

The next morning was bright and sunny, the perfect day for a dip in the lagoon. But breakfast first. It was refreshing to enjoy breakfast that I ordered from the menu, with fresh buttery croissants, mini muffins, eggs benedict and a stunning fruit platter. It was hard to move away from the breeze at this restaurant, but I managed to take a walk through the island afterwards.

First stop, the spa. I was met with helpful therapists who were very eager to show me around the You & Me Spa. With treatment rooms located over the water, this was an amazing sanctuary to beat the heat and pamper yourself. With the finest luxurious products by Elizabeth Arden and Hesito, the spa is equipped to offer a serene experience of beauty and wellness.

After a quick walk around the island, I met another group of guests at the jetty for the highlight of the day. A short speedboat ride to H2O, the underwater restaurant designed by the renowned designer Daniele Lago. Alex personally took us around the restaurant, sharing with us the handmade glassware, hand painted table tiles, how each course of delicacies such as Italian caviar, truffles and local lobster is accompanied by special music, and of how a unique ambience is created by the H2O ambassador. It was an impressive structure and added to the intimate feel of the rest of the island.

The perfect blend of rustic design, spacious yet intimate spaces, tranquil moments and stunning natural beauty make up the unique moments guests will take home after a stay at You & Me by Cocoon. For more information, visit www.youandmemaldives.com.