Villingili (Seenu Atoll)
|Holiday island resort|
|Administrative atoll||Seenu Atoll|
|Distance to Malé||36.64 km (22.77 mi)|
|• Length||3 km (2 mi)|
|• Width||0.8 km (0.5 mi)|
|Time zone||MST (UTC+05:00)|
In 1997 the government of the Maldives contracted the American firm Abonmarche to build a large resort and marina there, to attract tourism. Later, the government redacted this contract in 2000 and, finding no other bidders, awarded it to another firm called "Energy Tours" to build a smaller resort. Energy Tours defaulted on this contract.
In 2005 Maldives President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom contracted Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts, a Hong Kong-based company, to build the first luxury resort in Addu Atoll. The resort is being developed by Addu Investment Private Limited (70%) and the Maldivian Government (30%). The resort has costed an estimated USD 150 million and opened in early 2009. Shangri-La's Villingili Resort & Spa features a range of 132 villas including two Presidential Villas.
The island is also notable for having the highest natural elevation in the Maldives, Mount Villingili. It stands at a modest 5.1 metres (17 ft) and is located at tee number eight on Villingili’s Golf Course – the only golf course in the Maldives. Despite its humble height, it dwarfs over the previously known highest point on Addu Atoll that stands at only 2.4 metres (7 ft 10 in) above sea level.
In August 2011, there was a major boat accident at the Shangri-La Villingili Resort and Spa, Maldives, resulting in a guest being left with major injuries.