Independent
Maldives resort reviews

About Us

Dhonisaurus is the first website to provide independent reader ratings and reviews of resorts, hotels and guest houses with a Maldives focus.

‘Dhoni’ is the name for a Maldivian vessel with a distinctly curved prow, while a thesaurus draws distinctions between words to help you choose exactly the right one. As for the dinosaur - well we needed a mascot.

It’s not just a cute logo. Dhonisaurus aims to comprehensively list, review and rate every property in the Maldives, with the help of readers who’ve actually stayed at the properties so you can choose exactly the right destination for your holiday.

We know resorts put on their best behaviour for travel journalists, and that not every guest gets the complimentary fruit basket. That’s why our own ‘house’ reviews are written by independent travel journalists with extensive experience reviewing the Maldives – writers who see beyond the “Water was blue, taps were shiny” fluff loved by marketing people but of less value to readers.

Our main contributor, Adrian Neville, has lived in the Maldives for years and has the enviable distinction of having reviewed every resort in the country for his many guidebooks.

Moreover, most travel publications dealing with the Maldives operate under a sponsorship arrangement with several resorts or travel agencies, and leave out the others. We feel this is a disservice to readers, who want honest, comprehensive and accurate information before reaching for the credit card.

Dhonisaurus doesn’t operate under a sponsorship agreement with a particular group of resorts or travel agencies, we don't take a cut from any bookings, and advertisers on Dhonisaurus have no effect on a resort’s rating, which are calculated solely from reviews submitted by guests.

Who is Dhonisaurus?

Adrian Neville

Senior reviewer

Adrian Neville has been photographing and writing about the Maldives for 20 years, after first landing in Male' in 1991.

His first book, 'Male, Capital of The Maldives' was published in 1995 and remains the only book-length portrait of the island capital. He was later commissioned by the president to write, photograph and publish the official coffee-table book of the whole country. The first edition of 'Dhivehi Raajje: A Portrait of Maldives' came out in 2003. The updated second edition came out in 2011.

His seminal work, 'Resorts of the Maldives' was first published in 1998. The fourth edition, with every resort once more visited and reviewed, will be published in December 2011. Other resort guides have followed his lead but no other guide visits so many resorts, stays so long nor has the years of reviewing experience to draw on. Adrian Neville's knowledge of the resorts, each with their pros and cons, is the best there is today.

JJ Robinson

Editor

JJ Robinson is the editor of both Minivan News and Dhonisaurus, and has eight years experience as a journalist covering everything from droughts and bushfires to human trafficking and international geopolitics.

JJ began his journalism career as a reporter for the Narrabri Courier, a vibrant local newspaper in regional Australia. He subsequently covered the 2007 'saffron uprising' in Burma as a freelance journalist, before becoming an enterprise technology journalist for Information Age magazine based in London.

He flew to the Maldives with the shirt on his back in November 2009.

Neil Merrett

Sales and Marketing

Neil is a business and travel journalist with experience reporting on both the Maldives resort industry, and the hidden world of everyday current affairs across the country’s inhabited islands through the Minivan News publication. Neil deals with PR and Marketing queries regarding the site.

His ideal Maldives experience is as lazy as possible, whether in a pool or reef.

Independent
Reader-submitted ratings and reviews
Comprehensive
We list all properties, not just our advertisers
Experience
Inhouse reviews by guidebook author Adrian Neville