Taking care of books in the Maldives: the best job in the world is back


A job is back that literally looks like a dream – but it’s really real. One of the most incredible resorts on the planet, Soneva Fushi, the same one that recently announced that he will open the largest water villas in the world (with slides for the sea), needs a barefoot bookseller. That’s right: he is calling whoever, coming from anywhere in the world, is willing to move six months to the Maldives and sell books.

If nothing makes you happier than finding the perfect holiday read, if you like paradisiacal beaches (those who don’t), the return of the “Barefoot Bookseller” is probably the best news of 2020. It all started in 2018, when Ultimate Library, together with the luxurious five-star resort Soneva Fushi has created a pop-up bookstore on this island in the Maldives.

Since then, every year the duo has launched the challenge to the world: whoever wants to leave everything behind and assume the administration post of the bookstore. According to “Lonely Planet”, the last person chosen, and then a bookseller for six months, was Chrissy Ryan: she arrived in the Maldives in November 2019 and spent her time “writing blog posts, teaching creative writing classes, curating libraries, swimming, diving, snorkeling, reading on the beach and practicing yoga ”. A real torment, therefore.

Now, you can compete again for the best job available on the market, back for the third consecutive year. But beware: the experience in publishing houses or book stores is privileged. “Could it be our next barefoot bookseller? Do you have experience in publishing or selling books? Want to get away from it all to sell books on a desert island in the Maldives? Do you love to read, are you an excellent communicator and love to write? If it sounds right, it’s perfect for our Barefoot Bookseller 2020 ”. The challenge on Instagram then leads interested parties to an online form, which you only have to fill out as soon as you can.

Here, it is further explained that the job offer is then made by the company The Ultimate Library, which makes the vacancy available to anyone who is willing to move to the most remote and luxurious library in the world. The lucky person is thus in the eco resort Soneva Fushi, in Maldives, and the ideal candidate should be available to stay, for at least six months, on the island of Medhufaru, in the dream location of Baa Atoll, starting in October.

The employee should assume the task of selling books – barefoot, as the luxurious resort has the tradition of everyone leaving their shoes on arrival. The bookseller will help guests to live literary experiences, idealizing, for example, writers’ workshops and personal reading consultations. Whoever gets the job will also be free to present “new and interesting ideas” and will have “Plenty of free time to enjoy life on the island, dividing your time between the library, the beach and the jungle”.

“With the Soneva Resorts chain, adored by its relaxed luxury in the Robinson Crusoe style, the return of the Pop-Up Bookstore creates the best spot for a desert island bibliophile: barefoot bookseller, in one of the most beautiful places in the world”, reinforces the description .

The bookstore that will be the workplace was created to reflect “the stunning natural environment and the smart luxury that Soneva Fushi offers”, says the job description. “While most of us think holidays are the only opportunity we have to read for pleasure, finding the perfect book that highlights your destination and opens your mind can be challenging. Previous barefoot booksellers have provided guests with unforgettable literary experiences, from workshops for writers to personal reading consultations. We are interested in seeing what new ideas you can bring to the place ”.

Finally, the interested party must be creative, inspiring and able to convey a taste for reading, and you must be prepared to meet millionaires and celebrities who are a constant presence in the paradisiacal eco resort.

The lucky guy will have prior training with the Ultimate Library team (which will be conducted remotely this year, just like the interviews), before flying to the Maldives to join the Soneva team for a placement of approximately half a year (usually from end of October until after Easter).

All of this gets even better, if possible, knowing that it has recently been announced that this private island resort is going to inaugurate the largest (and probably most incredible) villas on water in the world.

Soneva Fushi was already, or is, before these villas, a dream, we already understand. The original hideaway occupies a deserted and private island in the Maldives – here, to vacation or rent a villa is to have the island all to yourself with the other guests, with pampering, privacy and benefits that look like a movie.

On this small island in Baa Atoll, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve 30 minutes by seaplane from Malé International Airport, the spacious and luxurious villas are hidden among the dense foliage, surrounded by sea and coral. The resort, all ecological, with sustainable materials and practices, has luxurious and giant cabins with private and direct access to the beach. The exclusive bathrooms are set within a large private garden with outdoor showers and separate bathtubs.

But there is much more: those who stay here are entitled to butlers, free bike rides around the island, stargazing, outdoor cinema. There are also rooms for free chocolate and ice cream, a cellar with over 500 wines and six restaurants of different cuisines.

Breakfast is described by visitors as a divine experience, butlers are called Mr Friday and Mrs Friday, the spirit is of Robinson Crusoe’s island, with decorative motifs and activities to invoke him but all in luxury , clear. Water sports are free and guests can even spend a night on a sandbar, completely private and remote, for a truly intimate experience under the stars.

As if that were not enough, each resort accommodation opened in 1995 is better than the previous one: some have private pools, others have direct slides to the private pool, some have private gardens of leafy and tropical trees, some even have a kind of nest suspended bird to eat meals, with indescribable views.

The villas are made of palm wood and straw, decorated with natural materials, have all possible luxuries and services, the beaches have palm trees and the Soneva Fushi Spa has a large lake with waterfalls.

Soon they will open what the chain says are the largest one- or two-bedroom villas on water in the world: eight new retreats that are also the first villas on the water of Soneva Fushi.

Accessed by a pier near Dolphin Beach, the eight water retreats are designed to ensure maximum privacy for guests, as well as to enjoy the perfect views of the ocean.

One-bedroom water retreats are about 584 square meters and two-bedroom retreats are 857 m². The spacious interiors and exterior spaces provide a unique stay, with details that never end. Here, there’s the one slide that takes you directly from the bedrooms to the sea, hammock beds suspended over the water, outdoor showers and the master bedroom has a retractable roof to allow star gazing from the bed.

For those who are not a barefoot bookseller, visiting Saneva Fushi is mainly to dream, since the nights at this Maldivian resort start at 1,000 euros – but can exceed 11,000 a night.


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