A Letter from Paradise from Julia Castelli of Ithaafushi

The newly appointed Managing Director of the exclusive Maldivian private island offers a warm welcome.

Boasting an illustrious 22-year career, Julia Castelli is well-versed in catering to the most discerning individuals. Having collaborated with esteemed brands such as Chanel, Chopard, De Beers, Piaget and Fabergé, she recognises the exceptional allure of Ithaafushi. “There is nothing quite like it,” she says. “It’s about experiencing peace in paradise and knowing that the whole island, at least temporarily, belongs exclusively to you.” 

Citation Longitude
Citation Longitude

Julia was captivated the moment she encountered the island. “After visiting, I understood that my job would essentially be to fall in love with the island and share that passion with my clients and the world,” she says. “The moment I first set foot on Ithaafushi, it was a case of butterflies in my stomach—I fell in love at first sight, and so will you.”

The Essence of Ithaafushi

Since stepping into her role in July 2023, Julia has brought a wealth of experience from the upper echelons of the luxury industry, making her ideally suited for the lavishness that defines Ithaafushi. Catering to high-net-worth individuals, CEOs, celebrities, royal families and heads of state, Julia emphasises the essence of privacy, exclusivity, space, unparalleled service and extraordinary experiences.

A Priceless Experience 

“Although hiring the island comes with a price tag,” Julia says, “what we offer on Ithaafushi is priceless. The accommodations are crafted to the highest specifications; the residences are spacious and filled with light, exuding luxury. We provide unique and bespoke services that add a personal touch.” 

As a mother of two teenagers and a businesswoman, Julia also underscores the family-friendly nature of Ithaafushi. “Time with your loved ones is precious—I know this first-hand. I was delighted to discover that Ithaafushi offers numerous family-bonding activities. Children are in heaven on the island thanks to an array of activities—water sports, diving, excursions and much more.”

Wellness and Personalised Care

For those seeking wellness, Ithaafushi offers ideal opportunities for healing rituals. The Spa Wellness Concierge tailors bespoke itineraries made up of unique services and transformative experiences. “In my routine, I incorporate breathing exercises, meditation, yoga and Pilates,” says Julia. “Upon arriving on the island, I mentioned my routine to the Spa Wellness Concierge, who designed a programme for me. Ithaafushi boasts a spa, gym, and yoga deck, plus a sauna with the best view in the world. Essentially, we can provide any specialist for any treatment a client desires.”

Sustainability at the Forefront

Deeply committed to marine conservation, the island adopts the Parley AIR strategy in partnership with Parley Maldives—Avoid, Intercept and Redesign—to combat threats to the ocean. The in-house marine biologist nurtures coral nurseries, aiding in the protection and restoration of the marine ecosystem. 

Julia is delighted with this approach: “I’m thrilled that our private island integrates sustainability practices into its operations, offering a luxurious yet eco-friendly experience,” she says. “We take recycling very seriously at home, and it’s wonderful to see that my new workplace not only contributes to a sustainable future but leads the way.”

A Perfect Balance 

For Julia, her role at Ithaafushi represents the ideal balance of life and work, career ambitions and ethical values. She is eager for her future guests to connect with the ethos of the island. “My lifelong career in jewellery and passion for luxury have led me to this rare gem in the Indian Ocean,” she says. “It’s no coincidence that the island’s name means ‘The Pearl Island’. I’m honoured and excited about this new project because I have the role of sharing the island’s beauty and exclusivity with others seeking the ultimate luxury.”

Click here to discover more about Julia Castelli and her work. 

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