Updates on Maunaloa Volcano - CLICK HERE

Watching Heavenly Bodies at Outrigger Maldives



Guests at Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort can see heavenly bodies on the beach. Not the celebrity type, but celestial bodies in the sky – all thanks to the stargazing passion of the resort’s director of rooms, Ibrahim Mubaarak, or ‘Ibbe’, as friends call him.

Like many Maldivians, Ibbe started working at resorts on the country’s many exquisite coral atolls. One of his early jobs was to prepare water sports equipment at night for the next day’s guests. Ibbe spent a lot of time on beaches and on the water after dark working by the light of the stars. He couldn’t help but notice the multitude of constellations, endless worlds beyond worlds, all highly visible due to the absence of any light pollution from urban centres.


Maldives’ position almost on the Equator also helps. It allows stargazers to see constellations above both northern and southern hemispheres.

One night Ibbe was chatting to an English couple on the beach. They knew about astronomy and shared information that captivated his imagination. On a return visit they brought him a telescope. Ibbe’s journey as an amateur astronomer took off in earnest.

Along the way Ibbe learned from a former NASA astronomer hired at a Maldivian resort to promote stargazing for guests. Inspired, Ibbe took the plunge in 2012 and invested a lot of his savings in a Schmidt Cassegrain C8 XLT telescope.

“Astronomy is a hobby where you have choices,” says Ibbe. “You can spend very little, or a lot, almost all your wealth….I don’t really spend that much money on astronomy. I’m doing it on a, er, sustainable basis,” he laughs.

The trick he says is to look after your equipment. “You don’t need to have a lot of money. It’s more about dedication.”

With a decent telescope of his own, Ibbe's passion for astronomy grew. But he also continued his day job in resorts, doing well as a manager, rising in rooms divisions. Eventually, he worked at two resorts where Outrigger’s current general manager, John Allanson, encouraged Ibbe’s after-hours devotion to astronomy. To the delight of Ibbe his hobby was formalised into an evening activity for guests staying with Outrigger.


“Most of the guests smile and go ‘Wow’,” says Ibbe, when they look through the telescope and see the rings and moons around Saturn and the cloud belts of Jupiter. “It’s a jaw-dropping experience for them. Some of the guests don’t believe me. They say, ‘You’ve put a slide in there!’ They have no idea that there are things in the sky that can surprise them like that.”

Ibbe tells them stories of how ancient civilisations on Earth such as the Mayan and Egyptians built pyramids aligned to star patterns. Until the Enlightenment, humans believed in astrology, star signs and the power of the moon. It wasn’t until the Dutch developed telescopes in the early 17th century and the advent of philosopher-scientists such as Copernicus, Galileo and more recently, Einstein, that astronomy revealed wonders and ideas even more mind-boggling than ancient astrologers imagined.

Like the universe, a conversation with Ibbe, while star gazing, knows no bounds. You may find yourself discussing the origins of life, the definition of what ‘life’ is, Big Bang Theory, the expanding universe – and how Einstein got that bit a little wrong.

“It makes you feel you are a very small part of the universe,” says Ibbe. “It makes you put everything into perspective once you learn about astronomy.”

An area he would like to get into more on Maafushivaru island, is sun gazing during the day using solar telescopes. There is zero risk of eye damage and you can see flares, waves, dark spot magnetic fields and “prominences.” Flares sometimes shoot high into the atmosphere around the sun only to be pulled back by gravity. “It’s really a phenomenal thing. For the night time astronomer, it’s a completely different experience,” says Ibbe.

Back on Earth, Ibbe found that sometimes stars and fate collide.

Ibbe met his Japanese partner when they were on a stargazing date. They are now married and have a one year old daughter called Juna.

Maybe it was written in the stars.

Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort offers guests evening stargazing sessions with Ibbe. It’s a humbling experience.

Subscribe and Keep Up With The Latest Posts

  • 1
    Select Your Destination
Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort | Hawaii
  • Home of Hawaiian Music, Kani Ka Pila Grille
  • Renovated modern guest rooms
  • Immersive cultural activities
  • Voyager 47 Club Lounge
Waikiki Beachcomber by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Hawaii’s first and only craft hotel
  • Home of The Beachcomber Originals
  • Hawaiian Aroma Caffe, Waikiki’s most Instagrammed coffee shop
  • Island’s longest bar at Maui Brewing Co
Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort | Hawaii
  • Beachfront location
  • Home of Duke’s Waikiki
  • Hawaii’s best live music venue, Blue Note Hawaii
  • Voyager 47 Club Lounge
Waikiki Malia by Outrigger |Hawaii
  • Intimate retreat for adventure seekers
  • Easy access to Waikiki Beach
  • Choice for value-minded families and groups
  • Spacious guest rooms and studios
  • Offering connecting rooms and kitchenettes
OHANA Waikiki East by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Spacious guest rooms with kitchenettes
  • Ideal for large groups or families
  • Steps to Waikiki Beach and International Market Place
  • Onsite restaurants – Appetito Craft Pizza & Wine Bar and Tanaka of Tokyo
Airport Honolulu Hotel | Hawaii
  • Only half a mile from Daniel K. Inouye International Airport
  • Pet friendly
  • Convenient for business travelJust minutes from Pearl Harbor
Waikiki Shore by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Only resort condo directly on Waikiki Beach
  • Sweeping panoramic ocean views
  • Family friendly
  • Perfect for extended stays
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
Regency on Beachwalk Waikiki by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Intimate, boutique style condo resort
  • Situated in the Waikiki Beach Walk shopping and dining district
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
Honua Kai Resort & Spa | Maui
  • 38 tropical beachfront acres
  • 3-acre aquatic playground
  • AAA Four Diamond Award accredited
  • Luxury, 1, 2 and 3 bedroom suites on Kaanapali Beach
The Kapalua Villas Maui | Hawaii
  • Located on 22,000-acre Kapalua Resort
  • Choose from 3 beaches and 11 restaurants
  • Ocean and golf room views
  • Offering two magnificent golf courses
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
Palms at Wailea Maui by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Located within the world-famous Wailea Resort community
  • A short drive from the Shops at Wailea and beaches
  • Near Wailea’s most renowned restaurants
Royal Kahana Maui by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Ocean view of Molokai and Lanai
  • Boasts oceanfront pool
  • Private lanai
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
2 Bedroom Partial Ocean View|Kaanapali Maui at the Eldorado by Outrigger
  • Fronts the fairways of Kaanapali Beach Resort
  • Short walk from Whalers Village
  • Featuring three swimming pools
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
Aina Nalu Lahaina by Outrigger | Maui
  • Boutique-style condos in heart of Lahaina
  • Two blocks away from Front Street
  • Walking distance to shops and restaurants
Napili Shores Maui by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Offering stunning views of Lanai and Molokai
  • Newly renovated condos
  • Oceanfront on property dining at the Gazebo Restaurant
Waipouli Beach Resort & Spa Kauai by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Heated river pool running through two-acre property
  • Features flumed water slides
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
Kiahuna Plantation Resort Kauai by Outrigger | Hawaii
  • Cottage-style beachfront condos
  • Complimentary access to Poipu Athletic Club
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
Lae Nani Resort Kauai | Hawaii
  • Oceanfront condos
  • Includes an ocean pool within a natural stone breakwater
  • Adjacent to the Coconut MarketPlace
Welcome to Outrigger Kona Resort and Spa
Watch the majestic manta rays that swim through Keauhou Bay. Or spend your day relaxing at the spa. It all starts here, on Hawaii Island.
Fairway Villa Waikoloa by Outrigger | Hawaii Island
  • Guests treated to infinity pool and lava rock whirlpool
  • Surrounded by Robert Trent Jones Jr. designed golf course
  • Selection of on property dining options
Kohala Coast Vacation Rentals by Outrigger | Hawaii Island
  • Five distinct properties to choose from
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
  • Close to upscale King’s Shops and Queen’s Market Place
  • Golf at Beach Course
Kanaloa at Kona by Outrigger | Hawaii Island
  • Set on 18 oceanfront acres
  • Boasts 3 swimming pools and 2 tennis courts
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
Royal Sea Cliff Kona by Outrigger | Hawaii Island
  • Set on a lava rock bluff
  • Panoramic views of the Kona coast
  • 5-minute drive to restaurants and shops
  • Ability to select a specific condo unit
Castaway Island, Fiji Resort | Outrigger Hotels & Resorts
  • Beachfront bures
  • Complimentary beach services
  • Kava ceremony welcomes guests
  • Wood-carving guest activity
  • Enjoy Meke traditional song and dance
Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort | Outrigger Hotels & Resorts
  • Beachfront bures
  • Offering Meimei nanny service
  • Talai butler service available
  • Named #1 Family Resort
  • Amazing firewalking ceremony
  • Outrigger Mauritius Beach Resort | Outrigger Hotels & Resorts
    • Luxury beachfront suites
    • Mauritian Rum tasting experience
    • Dance to Sega music
    • Relax on private beach
    • Complimentary kid’s club
    Evening at Outrigger Koh Samui Beach Resort
    • Located beachfront on Lamai Beach
    • 2 swimming pools
    • Fitness center
    • Restaurants and in-room dining
    • 3 meeting rooms
    Garden Suite - living area | Outrigger Khao Lak Beach Resort
    • Located beachfront on Bangsak Beach
    • Swimming pool
    • Fitness center
    • Restaurants and in-room dining
    • 3 meeting rooms
    Plunge Pool Suite | Outrigger Surin Beach Resort
    • Located on Surin Beach
    • Boutique resort
    • 2 swimming pools
    • Restaurant and in-room dining
    Aerial View | Outrigger Maldives Maafushivaru Resort
    • Luxury resort in the Maldives
    • Choose from beachfront villas or over-water villas
    • Numerous dining options, including our signature restaurant Moodhu Grill
    • Fully equipped PADI and SSI dive center
    Waikiki Beach | Hawaii
    • Famous for Waikiki Beach
    • Hike Diamond Head Crater
    • Take a historical journey at Pearl Harbor
    • Birthplace of legendary surfer Duke Kahanamoku
    • Home to Iolani Palace, US’s only royal place
    Experience a gorgeous Maui sunset
    • Voted “Best Island in the US”
    • Home to Haleakala volcano
    • Famed for whale watching during the winter months
    • Famous scenic stretch road to Hana
    • Mile long of sandy shore at Kaanapali Beach
    Beaches of Kauai | Hawaii
    • Nicknamed the Garden Island
    • Known for lush valleys, waterfalls and hiking trails
    • Has more beaches than any other Hawaiian Island
    • Most hiking trails than an other Hawaiian Island
    • Largest coffee plantation in the US
    Hawaii Island (Big Island)
    • Often referred to as the “Big Island”
    • Kilauea volcano is the most active and largest in the world
    • Known for black sand beaches
    • Grows most of the world’s macadamia nuts
    • Home to some of the world’s largest telescopes
    Aerial view | Castaway Island Fiji
    • Beachfront bures
    • Authentic cultural experiences
    • Family-friendly accommodations
    • Beach & water activities
    Outrigger Thailand | Outrigger Hotels & Resorts
    • Accommodations in Koh Samui, PhangNga and Surin Phuket
    • Exotic cuisine featuring aromatic spices and fresh ingredient
    • More than 40,000 temples throughout the country
    • Unique variety of wildlife and nature
    • 2
      Select Your Stay Dates
    • 3
      Choose Rooms & Guests
    Apply A Special Rate
    Oh snap! It looks like the rate you selected is not available.
    Your Selection Has Been Applied
    Your Summary
    Back to Top