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Gili Lankanfushi in the Maldives, synonymous with sustainable and barefoot luxury, unveils a rejuvenated Overwater Bar, complemented by a tantalizing new menu from Executive Chef Hari Govinderaj. Nestled in North Malé Atoll, a mere 20 minutes by speedboat from Malé airport, this eco-resort embodies a ‘no news, no shoes’ philosophy, perfectly blending rustic eco-design with laid-back luxury.
Having been refurbished, the Overwater Bar now flaunts rustic eco-chic interiors and an extended outdoor decking area. It’s more than just a dining spot; it’s a sanctuary where guests can watch the sunset, sip on sundowners, and spot reef sharks and rays gliding through the lagoon below. As an all-day dining venue, the bar offers unparalleled views across the Indian Ocean, setting the stage for a culinary experience that is both relaxed and refined.
Chef Govinderaj’s new menu at the Overwater Bar is a delightful fusion of international flavours, traditional Maldivian dishes, and beachside classics. Among the latest additions is the ‘Gili Grandma’ curry menu, a heartwarming tribute to cherished family recipes from various Asian regions. This menu is a journey through the authentic tastes of South and East Asia, ranging from Maldivian reef fish curry to spicy Sri Lankan pumpkin curry.
Not to be missed are the Indonesian nasi goreng, locally caught reef fish sashimi and teriyaki chicken. The pizza and ‘Gili Breads’ sandwich menu are perfect for those seeking laid-back bites. Ending the meal with homemade ice cream or Gili’s famous hot chocolate lava cake is an indulgence.
“Everyone knows that grandma’s cooking is best, and we wanted to provide our guests with a refined take on the authentic South and East Asian home-style curries that grace the tables of our own chefs, and their families”, commented Chef Hari. “For the Gili Grandma menu, each chef presents their favourite family recipe from back home, which range from Chef Samiu’s Maldivian reef fish curry to a spicy Sri Lankan pumpkin curry by Sri Lanka native, Chef Isuru. Delicious!”
In addition to this revamped dining experience, the Overwater Bar also offers the ‘Seafood Under the Stars’ – a four-course tasting menu featuring freshly caught local seafood. This, along with three distinct restaurants and an underground wine cellar, ensures that Gili Lankanfushi remains a pinnacle of gastronomic excellence. Gili Lankanfushi, home to 45 luxurious overwater villas, offers a unique experience with dedicated Mr/s Friday butler service for each villa and residence. ◼
© This article was first published online in Jan 2024 – World Travel Magazine.