The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort Presents Exclusive Marriott Bonvoy Moment: Encounter Manta Rays with US Paralympic Gold Medalist Gregory Burns

PUBLISHED July 12, 2023

The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort, situated in Baa Atoll, the first UNESCO Biosphere Reserve site in the Maldives, announces an extraordinary opportunity for the esteemed Marriott Bonvoy members to embark on an unparalleled adventure through the specially curated Marriott Bonvoy Moment. From September 14 – 18, 2023, lucky bidders will have the rare privilege of snorkeling with majestic manta rays in Hanifaru Bay, the world’s most concentrated area of manta rays, accompanied by the illustrious Paralympic swimmer and artist, Gregory Burns. 

Gregory Burns, is a highly accomplished athlete and internationally renowned fine artist. Known for winning gold medals and setting world record in swimming at three Paralympic games, Gregory inspires many with his discipline and perseverance. For over three decades, he has painted professionally across 60 countries, and received the prestigious 2016 Sports Artist of the Year Award and a commission from the International Olympic Foundation to create paintings for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games. Polio, which Gregory contracted as a child, stimulated him to prioritize mobility and to express himself through sports and arts. 

The unparalleled Marriott Bonvoy Moments package includes a four-night stay in one of the wellness resort’s overwater villas with a private pool—promising an unforgettable and rejuvenating retreat for the guests from September 14 to 18, 2023 to experience and embrace Westin’s wellbeing pillars. Refreshing welcome drinks prepared at the Westin Fresh from the Juicery corner await upon arrival, and at Island Kitchen guests may savor well-balanced daily breakfast to boost their energy for the day. Prior to the snorkeling trip with Gregory Burns on September 15, guests are invited to join the Move Well stretching session, an important element to increase flexibility which will help them to accomplish the range of motion required before swimming along with the champion as well as the gentle manta rays. As part of Westin Hotels & Resorts WestinWORKOUT Gear Lending program, guests may make use of the Recharge and Recovery kit by Hyperice, a wellness gear to soothe and recover tense muscles post snorkel, before refueling their body and mind with restorative sleep in the award-winning Heavenly Bed. 

Upon day three, bid winners of the Marriott Bonvoy Moments will get in touch with their artistic flair while joining an underwater sketching session with Gregory and Maldivian artist Shameen Moosa. Art can be a different and fun way to calm and restore one’s mind and mood, to boost confidence and make people feel more engaged and resilient. For those who prefer to indulge their creative instincts on land, the Masterclass will be held at the Art Gallery. As the experience comes to an end, guests are treated to a remarkable sunset fishing trip to be part of the rich Maldivian tradition followed by a romantic barbecue by the beach. 

The General Manager of The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort, Vijay Kumar, expressed his delight at this exclusive opportunity, remarking, “We are thrilled to present this unique experience to our valued Marriott Bonvoy members. The Maldives is renowned for its natural beauty, and we are honored to partner with Gregory Burns, a true Paralympic athlete and artist, to bring The Westin brand pillars alive, presenting the Move Well, Play Well, Feel Well, Eat Well, and Sleep Well elements, and make this exciting event more extraordinary. We invite our guests to embark on this unique journey, and create cherished memories that will be treasured for years to come.” 

In anticipation of this exceptional collaboration, Gregory Burns shared his enthusiasm, stating, “I am thrilled to be part of this extraordinary moment with The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort. Swimming with manta rays in Hanifaru Bay is a truly awe-inspiring experience, and I cannot wait to share this ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity as we encounter these magnificent creatures, followed by a unique art experience in the beauty of the Indian Ocean.” 

Marriott Bonvoy members are invited to bid for a chance to be part of this extraordinary experience at  The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort by visiting the Marriott Bonvoy Moments site at

About The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort

Designed by award-winning architects PEIA Association, the resort offers 70 villas, distinct eco-friendly Italian design, exceptional dining experiences and a transformative wellness offering. Built overwater, the Heavenly Spa by Westin™ enhances the sense of calm the water brings, the spa has range of treatments to leave guests re-energized and nourished in both mind and body. With a choice of four unique outlets, The Pearl, Island Kitchen, Hawker and Sunset Bar, guests can experience a delightful range of cuisines during their stay. There is also a state-of-the art WestinWorkout® Fitness Studio with TRX® functional training equipment – great for pre-run workouts, suspension training and offers app based instructional videos by TRX Master Instructors.  In addition, there all the facilities expected from a luxury escape including a multi-function recreation ground for tennis, basketball and volleyball. The island life of The Westin Maldives Miriandhoo Resort may appear slow for most city dwellers. It has, however, a special rhythm, that allows one to take a step back, immerse themselves with the Atoll’s natural wonders go back home with novel experiences.


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