Top tips for getting over jet lag

Revive aching muscles and stiff bones after a long flight with a range of full body stretches devised by personal trainer at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Isabelle Lamant.

Exercise 1 – Relax the lower back

Open arms and keep shoulder blades on the floor. Relax your legs on the side. Inhale for 8 seconds with the nose – exhale naturally through the mouth. Repeat 5 times.

Exercise 1 – Relax the lower back

Exercise 1 – Relax the lower back

Exercise 2 – Stretch your bottom to avoid pain in the lower back

Put your right foot on your left knee, right arm between your legs, cross your fingers on or under the left knee. Press your knee in the direction of your chest until you feel the muscle stretch. Hold for 20/30 seconds per leg.

Exercise 2 – Stretch your bottom to avoid pain in the lower back

Exercise 3 – Stretch your hamstrings with a towel

Hold a towel with both hands and stretch your right leg as far as you can. Hold for 20 seconds. To avoid curving the back, bend the opposite (left) leg and put the left foot on the floor before changing legs.

Exercise 3 – Stretch your hamstrings with a towel

Exercise 4 – Stretch the outside of your legs (abductors)

Hold the towel in your left hand and place it under the right foot. Keep your left leg flat on the floor, turn your head and stretch out the right arm on the right side. Put the left elbow on the floor and pull your hand gently until you feel the stretch on the outside of the right leg. 20/30 seconds per side.

Exercise 4 – Stretch the outside of your legs (abductors)

Exercise 5 – Stretch inside of your legs (adductors)

Place the towel under your right foot and hold in the right hand. Keep your left leg flat on the floor, turn your head to the left. Put the right elbow on the floor and pull your hand gently until you feel the stretch on the inside of the right leg. 20/30 seconds per side.

Exercise 5 – Stretch inside of your legs (adductors)

Exercise 6 – Stretch inside of your legs (adductors), hands and forearms

We never think of stretching of our hands but they can really need it. Bend your knees, bring your big toes together and sit down as far as you can on your heels. Point your fingers in the direction of your hips and then press the palms of your hands on the floor. Hold for 20 seconds.

Exercise 6 – Stretch inside of your legs (adductors), hands and forearms

Exercise 7 – Stretch quads and improve the flow of blood circulation in your hips

Position your right knee above the right heel, stretch the left leg back and raise your spine. 20 seconds per leg.

Exercise 7 – Stretch quads and improve the flow of blood circulation in your hips

Exercise 8 – Stretch your hamstrings and shoulders

With your legs close together, cross your fingers behind your back and bend forward. Stretch your arms above your back as far as you can. Hold for 20 seconds.

Exercise 8 – Stretch your hamstrings and shoulders

Exercise 9 – Stretch your arms and chest and open the thorax

Put your fingers on a wall, stretch your arm and twist your body in the opposite direction. 5 deep breaths per side.

Exercise 9 – Stretch your arms and chest and open the thorax

Exercise 10 – Stretch your Legs, back, shoulders and arms

Press your hand against a wall. Stretch your arms and legs and keep your back parallel to the floor. Hold for 20 seconds.

Exercise 10 – Stretch your Legs, back, shoulders and arms

After this routine of 10 exercises you will immediately feel the benefit. These are stretches you can do every day without moderation.

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Healthy holiday menu for kids

Discover a family holiday in the Maldives where elegant luxury goes hand in hand with a warm, child-friendly welcome.

On the beach at Halaveli

On the beach at Halaveli

Sit back and relax in a deluxe hotel where you know your children aren’t simply an afterthought, fobbed off with chips and ice cream, but are catered for by top chefs with a healthy holiday menu designed to inspire them.

Halaveli chef Holger Joost believes that the secret to a successful children’s menu is in the combination of fresh healthy ingredients and comfortable tastes and textures kids crave.

‘We treat the kids with just as much attention as the adults, we consider that luxury,’ describes Chef Holger, and that means giving them food they love.

Healthy eating

‘It all has to do with finding the balance between comfort and healthy. So, for example, offering frozen yogurt with berries instead of ice cream – there’s still that comfortable icy-cold feeling but it’s healthy.

‘Instead of soft drinks we are implementing a smoothie program with organic honey – it still has the sweet refreshing taste but none of the preservatives.’

Picky eaters

That’s all very well for most kids but for some parents a major concern about a family holiday can be a child who is reluctant to try new things.

Chef Holger claims fussy eaters don’t faze him, ‘We can cater to any child who has particular aversions to foods. That is what luxury is, tailoring everything to better serve our guests.’

Fresh smoothies at Constance Halaveli, Maldives

Fresh smoothies at Constance Halaveli, Maldives

An organic approach

At Halaveli the children’s menu is almost entirely organic because Chef Holger believes that growing kids need their intake of pesticides limited.

He also slow cooks the food to ensure they get the maximum nutrients from the fresh, organic ingredients. ‘Instead of fast, flash fried food we are cooking foods at a lower temperature for a longer period of time to preserve more nutrients. The main concept is staying away from premade foods and preservatives.’

Sophisticated tastes

Chef Holger recognizes that many of the children who stay at Halaveli are already familiar with the more sophisticated flavours of good dining and he intends to stimulate and satisfy those with a taste for great food.

‘So many kids today are raised to enjoy quality food that most of the time their standards are higher so we cater to those high standards.’

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Match food with fine wines at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Take inspiration from Le Prince Maurice, and match food with fine wines, selected from the hotel’s extensive wine cellar.

The wine cellar at Constance Le Prince Maurice

The wine cellar at Constance Le Prince Maurice

1. Springfield Estate, ‘Life from Stone’, Sauvignon Blanc, 2011, Robertson region, South Africa

This Sauvignon Blanc has an expressive nose with exotic fruit flavours of passion fruit, pineapple and hints of grapefruit. It is crispy in the mouth, full of minerals with a citrus fruit aftertaste.

Food pairing

Albacore tuna carpaccio, celeriac and preserved lemon

2. Mullineux White Blend, Chris and Andrea Mullineux, 2011, Swartland Region, South Africa

This has a glorious nose of apricot, peach and honey, a harmonious blend with a beautiful complexity and a lemony freshness and fruitiness.

Food pairing

Faye faye crab millefeuille and victoria pineapple with coconut dressing.

3. Felton Road, Chardonnay, ‘Bannockbum’ 2010, Central Otago, New Zealand

The nose expresses top notes of white peach and cashew followed by a hint of toasted oak. Rich mouth filling flavours of white peach followed by some spicy taste, a touch of citrus and creamy in texture with a long aftertaste.

Food pairing

Grouper fillet cooked on a low temperature, creamy mussel marinière and local river watercress puree.

Laguna Bar, Constance Le Prince Maurice

Laguna Bar, Constance Le Prince Maurice

4. Vuurberg Red, Rall Donovan, 2009, Stellenbosch region, South Africa

Incredible concentration with intense fruit and structure in the mouth. Lots of cassis and spicy, leather notes with a firm tannin structure and the potential to evolve beautifully. Decanting recommended.

Food pairing

Roasted duck breast from the South Island with herbal flavours, sautéed sweet potato and pumpkin with braised mushrooms.

5. St Emillon Château Tertre Roteboeuf, Grand Cru Classé, 2004, Bordeaux Region, France

With floral notes and black fruit aromas this is charming and elegant in the mouth. It has a very fruity and caressing taste with soft tannin, excellent balance and a splendid finish.

Food pairing

Strips of foie gras and Australian beef tenderloin, pan-fried exquise potatoes from the South, oyster mushroom and onion pickles.

Wine cellar at Constance Le Prince Maurice

For more inspiration guests at Le Prince Maurice can visit the wine cellar and join our sommeliers for a wine tasting where you can sample a selection of some of the best wines from the new and old world.

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Fresh juice recipes

If the mercury’s rising where you are, quench your thirst with this selection of our healthy fresh juice recipes from Constance Halaveli.

Fuji Power

Fuji Power

For each recipe, use fresh fruit and juice where possible. Add all ingredients to the blender before adding ice if preferred.

Lemon cooler

2 stalks Lemongrass, cut into pieces
125 ml Grapefruit juice
125 ml Watermelon juice
20ml Honey & saffron syrup

Fuji power

125 ml Orange juice
125 ml Pineapple juice
10cm Ginger
20-30g Fuji berries

Watermelon breakfast smoothie

Watermelon breakfast smoothie

Carrot cocktail

125ml Carrot juice
125 ml Pineapple juice
125ml Orange juice
2 tsp Honey

Watermelon breakfast smoothie

720g Chopped watermelon
2tsp Lime juice
1-2 cm Ginger
10-15 Fresh mint leaves

Try our detox juices and find out more about Constance Halaveli, Maldives

The Moray Eel – love them or loathe them?

Marine biologist and guest blogger Robin Aiello takes a look at the much maligned Moray Eel in this month’s creature feature.

The Moray Eel

The Moray Eel

Robin will be returning to Constance Halaveli in September 2013, to run further dive courses and talks following her hugely popular visit earlier in the year.

You either love moray eels, or fear them.

Over the years moray eels have gained an unearned reputation as an aggressive, ferocious animal. In truth, however, they are reclusive and shy, preferring to flee or hide from divers by pulling into reef crevices.

How the moray breathes

Despite their long, snake-like appearance, moray eels are fish – not snakes. And like all fish, they need to have fresh seawater pass over their gills to breath. But, since morays are relatively sedentary fish, hiding in ambush to catch prey like crabs, octopus and fish, they have developed another way to ‘breathe’ – they gulp water by opening and closing their mouths. Many people misinterpret this behaviour as ferocious and a sign of aggression – but it is merely the eel’s way of breathing.

Their elongated, serpentine shape allows these fish to swim through the complex reef framework of nooks and crannies. To avoid getting cut and scraped by sharp coral, they produce huge amounts of mucus to coat their smooth, scaleless skin.

Marine biologist, Robin Aiello

Marine biologist, Robin Aiello

How moray eels catch their prey

When you look at the head of a moray eel their ‘beady’ little eyes seem disproportionately small. In fact, morays have very poor eyesight, and are nearly blind. So how do they find their food? By following their nose. They have a highly developed sense of smell and large tubular nostrils for smelling prey. They also have very good hearing, which helps them to hunt.

But what I personally think is the most amazing thing about morays eels is how they catch and eat their prey. In addition to several rows of razor sharp teeth, these fish have a unique weapon that, so far, scientists have not found in any other animal – a second set of jaws!

These jaws, called pharyngeal jaws, lie inside the fish’s throat, and when the mouth is opened to attack, they are propelled forward into the mouth to grasp the prey. As the mouth closes again, they pull back into the throat, taking the prey with them! How weird and amazing is that?

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Marine biologist journeys to the Arctic North

Marine biologist Robin Aiello visited Constance Halaveli earlier this year, where she ran a number of dive courses and talks. Currently in the Arctic North, Robin writes about her latest expedition.

Walrus' relaxing in the Arctic

Walrus’ relaxing in the Arctic

Greetings from the far north – the land of polar bears and walrus

I can assure you that right now, having just spent the past 8 hours driving a small rubber boat though thick sea ice in -1°C temperatures, I am dreaming of the warm tropical waters of Halaveli in the Maldives.

Expedition in Svalbard

I am up here in Svalbard, in the far North, above 79º latitude, working as the marine biologist on-board an expedition ship that is spending three months exploring the Arctic. So far, the season has been wonderful.

Polar bears and ice caps

The other day we started the morning with a male polar bear walking leisurely past our ship as we drifted in thick sea ice that spreads out as far as the eye can see. Polar bears are amazing animals with their huge paws, shaggy white coat of fur and piercing black eyes. They are just so regal and elegant – kings of the ice.

A Polar Bear

A Polar Bear

Later in the day we visited a beach with a dozen or so walrus hauled out. They are so funny – they lie for long periods of time doing absolutely nothing, then suddenly one will wiggle around, which starts a whole flurry of activity as they raise their heads, knock into one another with their tusks, until they slowly find a more comfortable position and settle back down to sleep some more.

As beautiful and dramatic as the scenery here is, I cannot wait to return to Halaveli in September to dive and snorkel the amazing reefs.

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Polar Bear

Up close and personal

 

Admiring the reflection

Admiring the reflection

 

A stroll on the ice

A stroll on the ice