MALDIVES – JA Resorts & Hotels has appointed Karen Merrick as the new general manager for its multi-award-winning private island resort in the Maldives, the JA Manafaru.
Ms Merrick, the second female GM in JA Resorts & Hotels portfolio of eight properties and currently one of few female GMs in the Maldives, will be leading a team of 350 associates in the idyllic 5-star luxury island resort.
She said she aims to bring the Maldivian culture to life on the island and ensure that guests experience both seamless five-star service while also enjoying the freedom to roam as an explorer on the raw, remote beauty of the islands.
Ms Merrick’s career spans 30 years across a variety of boutique hotels in the Indian Ocean and Europe. This will be her fifth leadership role in the Maldives.
Prior to joining JA Resorts & Hotels, she spent the last three years running the Song Saa Private Island in Cambodia. Her previous tenures were at The Taaras Resort & Spa in Malaysia, Kemang Icon by Alila in Indonesia, Soneva Fushi Resort & Residences, Diva/White Sands Resort & Spa and The Rania Experience – all based in the Maldives – and Ackergill Tower, Scotland.
JA Manafaru is one of the Indian Ocean’s most sought-after holiday destinations and a popular choice for both couples and families.
Fringed with exquisite powder beaches in pristine, lagoon ringed Haa Alifu Atoll, at the northern tip of the Maldives, the chic tropical hideaway features 84 luxurious beachfront and over-water villas and bungalows, each with their own private plunge pool.
At the 2019 World Travel Awards, it was named as “Indian Ocean’s Leading Honeymoon Resort 201”’, the “Indian Ocean’s Leading Hotel Suite 2019” and “Maldives’ Leading Hotel Suite 2019”.