Soneva was founded by Sonu Shivdasani and Eva Malmström Shivdasani in 1995. In 2012, the Shivdasanis sold the Six Senses and Evason branded resort and spa  management contracts, as well as the 30 spas under the Six Senses brand; as part of their “One Owner, One Operator, One Philosophy” strategy under Soneva.

Following the change of Maldivian law in December 2010, Soneva Fushi became one of the first resorts in the Maldives to offer residences to foreigners for purchase  under leasehold. A four-bedroom villa at Soneva Fushi was the first leasehold residential property to be sold in the Maldives in March of 2011.

Soneva Fushi is regarded as the first luxury resort in the Maldives, setting the trend for luxury holidays in the nation. It was the first Robinson Crusoe castaway-styled  resort in the Maldives and offered the island nation’s first spa, the first pool villas, the first wine cellar, outdoor cinema, observatory, chocolate room and ice cream parlour,  hot glass studio, organic gardens, and waterslides. Soneva currently operates the largest children’s club, The Den, in the Maldives.



Soneva Fushi opens on the island of  Kunfunadhoo, in the Maldives’ Baa Atoll, with 48 villas and is the first luxury resort  in the country. It introduces the first resort spa, as well as the first spa in the country.


Evason Ana Mandara opens in Vietnam.


Soneva bans plastic drinking straws, becoming one of the first hotel brands in the world  to do so.


Soneva Fushi is awarded the ‘Best of the Best’ by the readers of Condé Nast Traveller UK.

Soneva Fushi wins the President of the Maldives’ Green Resort Award.

Soneva Fushi arranges its first Soneva Nature  Trip with Eco Care Maldives, bringing 100  children from Malé to the Baa Atoll for a seven-day trip to learn about nature, the  environment, waste management and other  related topics.

Soneva Fushi opens its Organic Garden.


The Evason Phuket Resort & Spa opens in Thailand.

The Evason Hua Hin Resort & Spa opens in Thailand.

Soneva Gili opens in the Maldives, completely redefining the overwater villa concept. 


Soneva Fushi wins the President of the Maldives’ Green Leaf Award for the Soneva Nature Trip 


Evason Hideaway & Spa  opens on the island of Koh  Samui in Thailand.


Soneva introduces its Social & Environmental Responsibility Fund (SERF), committing 0.5% of revenue to community  projects.

Evason Phuket becomes Green Globe Certified.

Soneva wins ‘Most Environmentally Friendly Travel Company of the Year. at the TTG Travel Awards.


Six Senses Ninh Van Bay opens in Vietnam.

All Evason Hideaways are  rebranded as Six Senses.


Eco Centro, the Maldives’ first integrated waste management centre, opens at Soneva Fushi.

Soneva wins the PATA Grand Award for Environment, Social and  Environment Conscience.

Six Senses Yao Noi in Thailand, and Six Senses Zighy Bay in Oman open.

Soneva collaborates with the Society for Health Education (S.H.E.) to  provide access to Thalassaemia screening in the Maldives for four  years.

Soneva works with Eco Care Maldives to campaign for a ban on shark fishing. Thus, the Maldives becomes the second nation in the world, after Palau, to ban shark fishing in 2010.


Six Senses Sanctuary on Naka Island in Thailand opens. 

Soneva wins the WTTC Tourism for Tomorrow Award – Global Tourism Business. 

Soneva Fushi wins Virtuoso’s Most Environmentally Friendly Resort Award. 

The Soneva Carbon Calculator is developed and the measurement of direct and indirect carbon emissions starts across all operations. 

The Soneva Environmental Fund is introduced to offset carbon emissions. Soneva and Six Senses fund the building of a 1.5-megawatt windmill in Southern  India, implemented by The Converging World.

Soneva bans branded bottled water and instead mineralises and filters its own.

Soneva and Six Senses fund the building of a 1.5-megawatt windmill in Southern India, implemented by The Converging World.

Soneva bans branded bottled water and instead mineralises and filters its own.

The first SLOW LIFE Symposium: A Climate for Change is held, convening world-lead-  ing environmental thinkers.

Six Senses Samui awarded ‘Best of the Best’ by readers of Condé Nast Traveller UK

Soneva funds the Care Society to help increase services and teacher capacity at the  Care Development Center in Malé, Maldives, and refurbished the centre.

Soneva funds Kudarikilu Ekuveringe Gulhun (KEG), a local NGO, to complete the Kudarkilu Sewage Treatment Plant. 

Soneva starts supporting Care for Children and their drive to provide foster care for orphaned children. 

Soneva joins the Restaurants Against Hunger campaign to help combat child malnutrition.
Soneva funds NGO Live and Learn to conduct Waste Management Awareness training on five local islands in the Maldives. 



Soneva Fushi installs the largest solar plant in the Maldives.

Soneva Kiri opens on the island of Koh Kood in Thailand.

Sonu and Eva win the Inaugural Barclays Wealth Sustainable Award for their  sustainable work in the luxury hospitality industry (as part of Condé Nast Traveller).

Soneva Clean Water Projects launches to provide safe drinking water and basic  sanitation around the world.

Soneva funds a fully-fledged Dharavandhoo School Science Laboratory for local  students, buying equipment, staffing the laboratory and offering hands-on  experience for students before they sit their examinations.

Soneva funds the Bahiyya Pre School Reconstruction Project on the island of Eydhafushi.

Soneva works in partnership with IUCN and Mangroves for the Future to strengthen the Srinart Rajini Mangrove Ecosystem Learning Centre in Pranburi, Thailand.

Soneva distributes 3,000 cotton bags, divided across 13 islands in the Maldives’ Baa  Atoll as part of a STOP Plastic Bags Campaign with local NGO, SEEK.


Six Senses Con Dao opens in Vietnam. Six Senses Laamu opens in the Maldives. 

The Soneva Foundation is founded, funding environmental and social projects that address social and environmental challenges. 

The second SLOW LIFE Symposium is held. 

Soneva organises the Soneva Medical Camp, a set of mobile medical expeditions for surrounding communities in the Maldives, offering minor eye surgery, ultrasound scanning, optho-metering and reading glasses. 


Soneva wins the HICAP Sustainable Hotel Awards Corporate Leadership Award.

The Soneva Foundation funds the Darfur Stoves Project to provide  energy efficient cook stoves to vulnerable families in war-torn Darfur.

The Soneva Foundation launches the Forest Restoration Project to  plant 500,000 trees in Northern Thailand.

Soneva releases its first Sustainability Report.

The Water/wo/men event brings together professional windsurfers,  surfers, kite-surfers, free divers, NGOs and environmentalists to discuss  water related challenges around the world at Six Senses Lamuu.

The third SLOW LIFE Symposium is held and the idea of setting up a  global hospitality water initiative to follow Soneva’s method of  filtering and bottling water emerge; two years later WHOLE WORLD  Water is launched.

The Baa Atoll gets its UNESCO Biosphere Reserve status, which Soneva  Fushi’s marine biologists had worked on since 2007 to achieve.


Six Senses and Evason are sold, allowing Soneva to focus on its ‘One Owner, One Operator, One Philosophy, One Brand’ approach. 

Soneva becomes carbon neutral for both direct and indirect emissions, including guests air travel. 

Soneva Kiri launches its Coral Restoration project. 

The Soneva Foundation provides a scholarship at The Green School Bali to Tirta, a six-year-old Balinese student in second grade in August. 


WHOLE WORLD Water, an idea from the 2011 SLOW LIFE Symposium and funded by the Soneva Foundation, is launched, replicating Soneva’s method of filtering and bottling water on site. 

Soneva wins Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Award 

The fourth SLOW LIFE Symposium is held, where Johan Rockström introduces the idea of gathering keystone actors in the fishing industry to solve environmental challenges for the global seafood industry. Three years later the Soneva Dialogue is a reality. 

Chef Sobah, Soneva Fushi’s Chef de Cusine (voted Best Chef in the Maldives 2015 and Best International Chef 2015 by Food and Hospitality Asia), organises the Soneva Junior Master Chef cooking competition for 100 children from local islands, aged 11-12, in partnership with the Baa Atoll Education Centre on Eydhafushi. 


The Soneva Foundation launches the Myanmar Stoves Campaign to provide energy efficient cook stoves in rural Myanmar. 

Soneva Fushi becomes the Maldives headquarters of FINished with Fins, an initiative designed to reduce consumer demand for shark fins. 

Soneva launches the Learn to Swim programme for children and mothers on Maldivian islands. 

The Soneva Art and Glass Studio opens at Soneva Fushi, taking glass bottle waste from Maldivian resorts and creating beautiful glass artworks and functional pieces.

Soneva Total Impact Assessment is launched to audit all organisational and supply chain impacts on local communities and the environment. 

The fifth SLOW LIFE Symposium is held. 

Soneva Fushi is named SharkSavers’ ‘I’m FINished with Fins’ regional campaign headquarters, and Sonu and Eva Shivdasani were named their ambassadors. 


Work commences on Soneva Jani in the Maldives’ Noonu Atoll, applying rigorous environmental and social standards. 

Soneva wins the WTTC Tourism for Tomorrow Award - Environment category. 

Women in Soneva initiative launches to encourage more female Hosts. Soneva Kiri produces its first Botanical Diversity report. 


Soneva Jani opens in the Maldives.

Soneva Fushi installs an additional 624 kWp of solar PV capacity,  allowing us to cover 15% of our peak load from the sun. 

Soneva Fushi and Soneva Kiri take first and second place in the Sustainable Luxury Tourism - VIP International Traveller Reader’s Travel Award. 

The Soneva Dialogue, with HRH Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden as patron, gathers eight of the world’s biggest seafood companies to agree on sustainability commitments for the industry and form the Seafood Business for Ocean Stewardship (SeaBOS). 

The sixth SLOW LIFE Symposium: Prosperity Within Planetary Boundaries is held. 



Soneva wins 3G Best Sustainability Report Award - Global Good Governance Awards. 

Soneva Fushi wins the World’s Most Eco-friendly and Sustainable Hotels, Asia Pacific - Green Hotelier Award. 

Soneva Jani begins its coral restoration project. Soneva in Aqua, Soneva’s luxury two-cabin yacht, 

sets sail in the Maldives. 

Soneva Fushi builds plastic recycling machines based on the Precious Plastic blueprints. 

Soneva Fushi starts producing its own coconut oil. 


Soneva Fushi wins the Community Engagement Award - PURE Awards. 

The Soneva Water plant opens on the island of Maalhos in the Maldives. 

Soneva Surf Pro competitions, the first local-only events, are held for local children in the Maldives. 

The Soneva Foundation’s Myanmar Stoves Campaign issues its first Gold Standard carbon credits for Myanmar. 

The 18-month Festival of Colour is launched across all resorts to create rare experiences for guests. 

The Michelin Guide partners with Soneva in the Maldives for 12 months of chef collaborations.


Soneva Namoona is launched to eliminate single-use plastic on Maldivian islands. 

Sonu wins the Lifetime Achievement Award - HICAP Sustainability Awards. 

Soneva Fushi launches its Zero Mosquito Project aimed at eradicating mosquitoes by using insecticide-free traps. 

Shades of Green, Soneva’s first plant-based fine dining restaurant, opens at Soneva Fushi. 

Soneva Kiri wins the Condé Nast Traveller’s ‘Best Resort in Asia’ award for 2019/20. 

KSL invests in Soneva, buying out Sailing Capital.


Soneva Fushi wins the Unique Eco-Initiatives and Community Impact - Departures Legends Award. 

The Maalhos Eco Centro opens as part of the Soneva Namoona initiative and becomes the first island in the Maldives to stop the open burning of waste. The inauguration includes a celebrity cricket match with former Maldivian President Nasheed and Indian cricketer, Harbhajan Singh. 

Soneva celebrates 25 sustainable years.

The Soneva Stars campaign is launched to create memorable, “money can’t  buy” guest experiences across all resorts. 

Soneva Fushi’s eight new one and two-bedroom Water Retreats open in August. 

Soneva Jani sees an additional 27 villas and new spa open. 

New Conscious Experiences are launched to encourage guest engagement in Soneva’s community and eco initiatives at all three resorts. 

Soneva Fushi’s Zero Mosquito Project finds success with a 98% mosquito reduction within one year of using the insecticide-free mosquito trap management solution. 

Soneva Jani launches its Zero Mosquito Project aimed at eradicating mosquitoes with insecticide-free traps.