Get fit with your kids

Fitness guru and personal trainer at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Isabelle Lamant, shares her top tips for fun workouts you can do with the kids in order to get fit.

Your children want to have fun with you and you need to stay in shape, so here is a simple and efficient routine which will keep everyone satisfied.

The key is to make it fun so I advise you set this routine to music – try picking one of your child’s favourite songs and encourage them to sing along during the movements.

Exercise 1 – Stretch your side to avoid love handles

Exercise 1 – Stretch your side to avoid love handles

Exercise 1 – Stretch your side to avoid love handles

Pull in your navel, keep your bottom and your tummy firmly contracted. Bend to one side and stretch your arm above your head. 10 on the right – 10 on the left – 20 fast alternately on each side.

Exercise 2 – Sculpt your arms and legs while counting in another language

 Exercise 2 – Sculpt your arms and legs while counting in another language


Exercise 2 – Sculpt your arms and legs while counting in another language

The left knee should be above the left heel and the right knee should be under your right shoulder. Stretch your arms to the sides and squeeze your shoulder blades to create a good posture for your spine. Stay in this position until your kids finish counting to 20, in another language if possible! Then repeat with the other leg.

Exercise 3 – Draw and improve the flexibility of your hips

Exercise 3 – Draw and improve the flexibility of your hips

Exercise 3 – Draw and improve the flexibility of your hips

Draw 10 circles with your hips around your feet, first in one direction then in the other. Increasing the speed, draw one circle on one side then one circle on the other for 30 seconds.

Exercise 4 – Say ‘no’ to the saddlebag

 Exercise 4 – Say ‘no’ to the saddlebag


Exercise 4 – Say ‘no’ to the saddlebag

4B – Say ‘no’ to the saddlebag

4B – Say ‘no’ to the saddlebag

Bend your knees in front of your navel. Keep the left knee on the floor and lift the right one as high as you can. Encourage your child to push on your leg to create more resistance, they’ll love making you suffer! Then get your revenge by pushing their legs as they do it and work out your arms. 50 fast per side.

Exercise 5 – The dog against the invisible tree

  Exercise 5 – The dog against the invisible tree


Exercise 5 – The dog against the invisible tree

Place your hands below your shoulders, stretch your arms and keep the right knee under your right hip. Quickly move the left knee up and down without moving your body. 20 per side and repeat again if you can.

Exercise 6 – Your children will help you build a six-pack

 Exercise 6 – Your children will help you build a six-pack


Exercise 6 – Your children will help you build a six-pack

Hands under your head, open your shoulders, look at and pull in your tummy and stretch your legs up. Just keep your lower back on the floor and ask your child to do what they want on your tummy: tickling, uppercuts…everything is allowed as you attempt to hold the position. 30 seconds, 4 series.

Enjoy and have fun.

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Recipe: How to make Mauritian curry paste

Mixing curry spices in to a curry paste is a complex task which must be handled properly if it is to release the maximum of subtle flavours. The local Mauritian grandmothers, our “grandmas“, used to crush these spices on a rock with the help of a stone rolling pin. Along and painful practice, this ancient skill was passed down from mother to daughter.

Making a Mauritian curry paste

Making a Mauritian curry paste

Ingredients (serves 4)

The spice mixture for the curry paste:

  • 24g coriander seeds
  • 18g cumin seeds
  • 12g cardamom capsules
  • 6g black peppercorns
  • 9g fennel seeds
  • 9g mustard seeds
  • 3g cloves
  • 1g dried chilli without seeds
  • 12g green saffron (fresh turmeric), root soaked overnight in water (keep the water)
  • 150g onions
  • 30g garlic
  • 15g curry leaves
  • 30g fresh ginger

1. Peel and wash the herbs and roots, the onion and garlic.

2. Roast all the spices separately (except the green saffron and the dried chilli) in a non-stick pan over a low heat for less than a minute. (You need to be very attentive to the colouration and to the aroma that is released during the roasting.)

3. Put the ingredients into a blender with the minced onion, the garlic, the ginger and the chopped curry leaves, and the crushed green saffron. Mix it together with 250ml of the water used to soak the green saffron until you get a smooth even paste.

4. Take the mixture, cover it with a film of soybean oil and keep it in the fridge.

The curry sauce:

  • 150g onions
  • 60g ginger
  • 120g garlic
  • 300g tomatoes
  • 60g coriander leaves
  • 15g curry leaves
  • 50ml cooking oil

1. Wash and peel all ingredients.

2. Finely chop the onions and coriander separately, put them aside. then chop the garlic and ginger, again, putting them to the side.

3. Cut a tomato into small diced pieces, after removing the stem.

4. Brown the onions in oil, add the garlic paste and ginger. Cook it so it forms a compote.

5. Stir in the mixture of spices, cubed tomatoes and chopped herbs. Simmer for another ten minutes, stirring regularly with a spatula. You will get your base for any curry sauce that you may need for future dishes.

Sommelier’s suggested wine

Oxidative white wine:

  • Côtes-du-Jura, Vin jaune, Domaine André et Mireille Tissot, 2004 France
  • Côtes-du-Jura, Tradition du Château d’Arlay, 2004 France

Top beauty secrets from Net-a-Porter

Beauty editors have the very latest products and research at their fingertips, so who better to give us the best beauty secrets on how to look after our skin.

Beauty secrets

Beauty secrets

In its latest issue Net-a-Porter Magazine’s Evie Leatham got the lowdown from some of the highest profile beauty editors in the business to find out what they do to protect their skin in the sun.

Here’s a look at some of the best:

Sigourney Cantelo – Beauty Editor for Vogue Australia

Because of high skin cancer rates in Australia, Sigourney takes protection very seriously. She takes a Niacinamide supplement to boost her UVA and UVB resistance from within.

Valerie Zhang – Beauty Director for Vogue China

In China the fashion is for pale skin so high factor protection is vital. Zhang uses Shiseido Urban Environment UV Protector Extra Mild SPF30 because not only does it protect skin from the sun but shields against heavy city pollution.

Christina Han – Beauty Editor for The Cut, New York

Han reminds us that UVA can penetrate glass and cloud so we need to be careful in the summer months and always wear a hat outdoors. She uses Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Sunscreen SPF50+ or Shiseido Extra Smooth Sun Protection Lotion SPF 38 because they absorb without leaving a white residue.

Sally Matthews – Fashion and Beauty Director for Harper’s Bazaar Arabia

Matthews recommends Chanel’s UV Essential Complete Sunscreen SPF50 because it can be applied over or under make-up. She also uses Crème de la Mer’s new Reparative Body Sun Lotion SPF30 because its extra moisture helps to lessen the effect of the dry desert air in Dubai.

Read the article in full on Net-a-Porter: Beauty Sun Secrets

Constance Hotels & Resorts has 7 beautiful properties in Maldives, Mauritius, Seychelles and Madagascar. Visit our website to find out more.

Constance guide to a family holiday in Mauritius

There’s much more to Mauritius than perfect white sand beaches and turquoise waters. For families looking for a great climate, activities aplenty and a rich cultural heritage, Mauritius makes the ideal luxury family holiday destination.

Mauritius from the air

Mauritius from the air

Here’s our run down of the top 10 adventurous family days out in Mauritius:

1. Treetop Tracks Adventure Park

This treetop adventure park set above the heart of the Mauritius jungle is an exhilarating way to see the beautiful tropical interior of the island. The park has two treetop tracks you can follow with Nepalese bridges, knotted ropes and zip lines taking you and your family through the forest with awesome views of the Chamarel valley, the Piton Mountain and the Black River Nature Reserve.

2. Zip Lines Adventure

A thrilling way to explore the beautiful scenery of Rivière des Galets in the south of Mauritius this zip line adventure takes you past waterfalls, banana and sugar plantations and forest. Seven zip lines vary in length from 60m to 250m and take you through a range of stunning scenery. The zip lines are great for families with children over 4 years old. Many tours also offer a chance to swim in the waterfall pools so remember to take a swimming costume.

3. Feed giant tortoises at La Vanille Réserve des Mascareignes

See giant tortoises, monkeys and crocodiles amongst other fascinating inhabitants of the Indian Ocean islands at this beautiful animal-rearing park. Follow one of the park guides through the shady, leafy nature trails and discover the unique species of the island, then feed the giant tortoises some of which are nearing 100 years old.

Walking with lions

Walking with lions

4. Take a pirate cruise to Ile aux Cerfs

Bring history alive for any children with a spirit of adventure with this trip on a wooden sailing ship, a replica of a genuine pirate ship. On board, kids will love the pirate show with live music and dance while cruising along the southeast coast of Mauritius before arriving at the beautiful island of Ile aux Cerfs where a pirate lunch is served. Other stops include a river trip up to a waterfall, and a swimming and snorkelling stop off at the stunning Ile aux Aigrettes.

5. Hiking adventure in the Yemen Natural Reserve Park

An adventurous day of walking, zip lining, climbing rope ladders and swimming in natural pools in the stunning surrounding of the Yemen Natural Reserve Park on the west coast. Swim through a canyon, take Nepalese bridges across ravines, hike through the jungle with a local guide who can tell you all about the local flora and fauna.

6. Explore the Indian Ocean in a submarine

Seize the opportunity for you and your family to become submariners for the day on a trip to the bottom of the ocean. Give your kids the chance to explore the beauty of the Mauritian reefs with all their vibrant inhabitants and explore a genuine shipwreck from the safety of a real submarine.

7. View Mauritius from the air in a micro-light aircraft

See the stunning island of Mauritius from the air in a private flight in a micro-light aircraft or helicopter. Fly close enough to really see the beauty of this unique island over land and sea and create the memories of a lifetime for you and your family.

Mauritius Aquarium

Mauritius Aquarium

8. Eyeball a shark at the Mauritius Aquarium

With a unique ‘walk the ocean floor’ experience and a touch pool so that kids can experience feeling and feeding some of the local marine life this is an experience not to be missed. The aquarium houses over 200 species of fish as well as several species of shark, invertebrates, live coral and sponges all of which are found in the wild of the Indian Ocean.

9. Make a splash at Le Waterpark at Belle Mare

Take a break from the beach for a bit of high octane water fun at the 25 acre waterpark on the east coast. Rides and slides abound with such names as ‘crazy river’, ‘giant slide’, ‘mountain skull’ and the ominously titled ‘black hole’. There’s plenty here to keep the kids, and more adventurous parents, busy all day.

10. Walk with lions at the Casela Nature Park

While the walking with lions is strictly for older kids (15 years and over) youngsters can still see the big cats and other animals including giraffes and ostriches from the safety of the safari bus. This is also a wild bird sanctuary so look out for the pink pigeon and other rare birds while you’re here.

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Sunday Times recommends a September break at Tsarabanjina and Ephélia

Tempting you to make the glorious summer months last a little bit longer, in this week’s Sunday Times Chris Haslam recommends booking a September break in the sun.

A September break at Constance Ephélia, Seychelles

A September break at Constance Ephélia, Seychelles

Resorts Haslam recommends for a last blast of warmth before autumn arrives in the Northern hemisphere include Constance Tsarabanjina in Madagascar and Constance Ephélia in the Seychelles.

Describing the laid back vibe of Tsarabanjina, basking in 25°C sunshine, Haslam declares, ‘The choice of activities is almost endless: you can lie in a hammock, go snorkeling, read a book, lie in a hammock, go snorkeling or circumnavigate the island in 45 minutes.’

He claims the Seychelles is also the perfect September getaway (average temperature 27°C with, ‘white beaches, sapphire seas, coconut palms and superb seafood.’

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Discover the exotic birds of Madagascar

Famous for its unique wildlife Madagascar has always attracted visitors keen to discover rare and exotic plants and animals. Here we take a look at the extraordinary birds of Madagascar.

Madagascar Fishing Eagle

Madagascar Fishing Eagle

Madagascar Fish-Eagle

The large Madagascar fish-eagle (Haliaeetus vociferoides) is the largest raptor in Madagascar and is one of the rarest birds of prey.

The body is a dark reddish-brown with dark brown wings. Its cheeks and throat are a whitish colour while its short tail is pure white.

The juvenile Madagascar fish-eagle has streaks on its head and pale fringes to its flight feathers. Its underparts are paler and tail darker than the adult’s. It hunts near or over water and often perches for long periods on tall trees.

The Madagascar fish-eagle has a melodious call, similar to the closely related African fish-eagle (Haliaeetus vocifer).

Madagascar Kingfisher

The Malagasy Kingfisher

The Malagasy Kingfisher

The Malagasy Kingfisher or Madagascar Kingfisher (Alcedo vintsioides) is a member of the Alcedinidae family. It is found in Madagascar, and Mayotte (Comoros). Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical mangrove forests.

The Malagasy Kingfisher is found in all types of wetlands, as well as along the island’s coastline. Both sexes are similar.

White throated rail

The Aldabra rail is the last surviving flightless bird in the western Indian Ocean.

It has a slender build with a long, fairly slender neck, legs and feet. The plumage is well defined, being largely bright chestnut except for the striking white throat.

The fairly long, straight bill is dark with, in females, a bright pink base, and in males, a dull or dark red base. Juveniles generally have duller plumage than adults.

Being a flightless bird, the wings are short and are often held close to the body where they blend in with the rest of the plumage.

Many consider the Aldabra rail a subspecies of the white-throated rail (Dryolimnas cuvier).

Madagascar Paradise Flycatcher

Madagascar Paradise Flycatcher

Madagascar Paradise Flycatcher

The symbol of Constance Tsarabanjina, the Malagasy Paradise Flycatcher is a medium-sized passerine, measuring 18cm in length and weighing about 12.2g.

Males have long tail plumes, which can add as much as 18cm to their overall length.

The female is largely rufous orange, with a black head and nape. The flight feathers on her wings are black with rufous edges, and she has a thin, light blue eyelid wattle.

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