Refurbishment work gets underway at Le Prince Maurice

The last guests checked out at the weekend, and work to refurbish Constance Le Prince Maurice is now underway.

Constance Le Prince Maurice

Le Prince Maurice

Find out more about our plans for the super-deluxe refurbishment of this highly-rated hotel.

We’ll be posting articles over the coming 2 months so you can see the stunning new features as they take shape.

And to celebrate the revamp, we’re launching a fabulous competition offering you the chance to win a luxury 7-night holiday for 2,  including flights, at Le Prince Maurice when it reopens. Watch this space for competition details later this week.

 

Gallivanter’s Guide: Le Prince Maurice gets fantastic review

The latest edition of The Gallivanter’s Guide is now available, and this month it features a review of Constance Le Prince Maurice.

Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Constance Le Prince Maurice

Find out what reviewers Lyn Middlehurst and David Maslin think of our 6* deluxe hotel in Mauritius.

Sometimes, travel advisors and guests are guilty of learning by rote the names of a location’s ‘best’ hotels, and repeat the recommendations of these sacred cows ad infinitum, even when everything has changed beyond recognition.

This is decidedly true of Mauritius. The old favourites, such as Royal Palm, Le Touessrok and One & Only Le Saint Géran can no longer be classed as high-end, in my opinion. They all require serious investment and, perhaps, more importantly, a fresh perspective on what the high-end guest truly requires these days.

Equally, the new kids on the block are not necessarily better, for it takes rather more than a serious marketing budget and a sexy website to make a great hotel.

Constance Le Prince Maurice

Villa 30, Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Villa #30, a true home from home

We first stayed at Le Prince Maurice in 1999 and were enthralled by this intimate and elegant Aman-like resort. Fourteen years later, the 89-suite property remains timelessly beautiful – its Feng-Shui architecture by Jean Marc Eynaud and interiors by Martin Branner and Dale Keller, enhancing its 148-acre footprint that, uniquely, encompasses lush interiors, a splendid beach and a fishing reserve, or barachois.

We stayed for the umpteenth time, half way through the resort’s major refurbishment, and were thrilled to discover new exceptionally comfortable beds, soft down and feather duvets and pillows and fine cotton bedding edged with coffee coloured thread.

The dark wood floors had been polished to perfection, whilst chic cinnamon and spice-hued soft furnishings and objects lifted the look, and flat screen TVs, Apple minis, Nespresso machines, iHome Ipod dockers and thoughtfully stocked minibars demonstrated that this resort had been listening hard to its guests.

Villa #30 – best in the resort?

Private pool and deck at Villa 30, Constance Le Prince Maurice

Private pool and deck at Villa 30

We stayed in what is, for me, the nicest Pool Villa in the resort, for #30 sits on the gentle curve of the white sand beach, where the bay joins the barachois – a calm mangrove-set fishing lake that meanders lazily into the verdant distance.

Not only do you have your own generous plunge pool, lounging deck, outdoor dining table and thatch-shaded verandah, but you also have two palapa-covered loungers on the sand reserved just for you and stocked with bottled water.

Inside, there is a second full size dining table and a remarkably extensive room service menu, so that if you want to hole up here for the duration, you can.

There is a guest loo and shower off the sitting room, and a dressing area off the bedroom that leads into the twin vanity bathroom, which has an extra outdoor tub. The bathrooms are looking somewhat dated but in every other respect, they work well.

Bedroom at Villa 30, Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Bedroom at Villa 30

Villas # 29 and 31

Apart from Villa #30, I highly recommend the other two pool Villas at the barachois end of the resort; #29 and #31, as these are very secluded. For the best beach views, though, #30 and #31 win hands down. The remaining 6 pool suites are at the other end of the beach, beyond the main pool, so work better for those who prefer a more central location.

Princely Suite

There is one 2-bedroom Princely Suite at the far end of the beach, which although spacious requires a rethink design-wise in my view; but I hear this is happening, along with the refurbishment of the main lobby, so this, too, could be a great option for families or friends.

Junior Suites

Junior suites at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Beautifully designed junior suites

Entry-level suites are junior suite sized; either L-shaped or I-shaped; set in 2- storey blocks of four, with terraces or balconies. A lagoon-facing suite, such as #27, offers the best views, as some are set back in the gardens. However, I prefer the I-shaped suites, such as #28, which are very Aman in style and configuration.

What helps to make the resort so special?

An incredibly elegant resort, Le Prince Maurice attracts a well balanced mix of couples and families; a carefully located kid’s club, Les Petits Princes, set well away from grown-up areas. Senior staff has been here since the resort’s inception, so when you return, you are welcomed ‘home’ by the charming Guest Relations Managers, Meera and Manjoola.

Dining at Le Prince Maurice

The cuisine, under French Executive Chef, Michael Scioli and Food & Beverage Manager, Samuel Pellegrini, gets better and better, whether you opt for a light lunch on the beach deck, Blu, a snack in the chic Bar, or a Michelin-level dinner in L’Archipel, where Head Sommelier, Jérôme Carlier has some excellent  recommendations , including a raft of Rosés.

Le Barachois, Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Le Barachois, Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

The pinnacle of unique dining, however, is to be found at the dinner only Le Barachois – one of the world’s most original restaurants. You reach it via a meandering stilted walkway that snakes across the barachois; the handrails punctuated by lanterns; the only sound being the occasional splash of fish and the lapping of water against the mangroves. After around 5 minutes, you reach the restaurant, which consists of 5 floating, tented pontoons linked by teak gangplanks. The dinner menu here is now quite simple, but the experience is exceptional, including a ‘floating sommelier’.

Spa de Constance

The Spa Constance was being remodelled when we stayed and I was encouraged to hear that Spa Manager, Sophie Demaret, was intent on introducing some chemical free options.

And the other things that make Le Prince Maurice stand out from the crowd…

Beach at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Sheltered beach at Le Prince Maurice

Other lures are the excellent boutiques and the golf practice course, although if you crave serious golf, then sister property Constance Belle Mare Plage, which is almost next door, offers two 18- hole championship courses.

General Manager, Christophe Plantier and Resident Manager Ashok Bhugoo run an extraordinary resort that, encouragingly, gets better each time we return. Do go.

Gallivanter’s Rating:

Extraordinary

Find out more

 

Recipe: Tandoori Chicken

Delicious tandoori chicken, best served with long grain basmati rice, cucumber salad, grilled veggies and roasted corn on the cob.

Meeru restaurant, Constance Halaveli Resort, Maldives

Meeru restaurant, Constance Halaveli

  • 2lbs chicken cut into pieces
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 1/4 cups plain yogurt
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped coriander
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges

1. Remove skin from chicken pieces, and cut slits into them lengthwise. Place in a shallow dish. Sprinkle both sides of chicken with salt and lemon juice. Set aside for 20 minutes.
2. In a medium bowl, combine yoghurt, onion, garlic, ginger, garam masala, and cayenne pepper. Mix until smooth. Spread yoghurt mixture over chicken. Cover, and refrigerate for 6 to 24 hours (the longer the better).
3. Preheat grill to medium high heat. Cook chicken on grill until no longer pink and juices run clear. Alternatively, bake the chicken in the oven for 25-30 minutes at 230ºC.

Garnish with coriander and lemon wedges.

 

8 reasons to take your kids to Constance Hotels

If you’ve ever thought that children and luxury holidays don’t mix, think again. Imagine a tropical island idyll where you and your kids can immerse yourselves in a world so relaxing, you’ll never want to leave.

Family holidays at Constance Hotels Experience

Family holidays at Constance

Cue Constance.

Our elegant resorts exude a wonderfully relaxing atmosphere, so you get to enjoy a luxury family holiday knowing that your children will be welcomed with open arms.

To give you a taste of what it’s like at one of our resorts, here are 8 great reasons to trade the traditional camping holiday for an all-out luxury family get-away.

1. Beaches

The beaches at each of our 7 resorts offer the softest sand imaginable and paddle-friendly shorelines. At Constance, these natural playgrounds come with sand butlers  - on hand to bring refreshments, lunch and snacks so you don’t even have to move from your oversized lounger. Relax and soak up the rays while your children make race tracks and fairy castles with sand, stones and shells.

2. Sports

Kids love to be active, and good weather means they can enjoy the great range of sports we offer including kayaking, golf, yoga, cycling, tennis, swimming and diving.

The calm, warm water of the Indian Ocean makes it ideal for children to don a mask and snorkel and discover the magical underwater world brimming with tiny nemo fish, colourful corals and awe-inspiring turtles and manta rays.

3. Kids clubs

Kids club at Constance Lemuria Resort, Seychelles

Kids club at Constance Lemuria

Our complimentary kids’ clubs for 4-12 year olds allow you to enjoy some time-out while your kids make new friendships under the care of our experienced and friendly staff. The emphasis is on adventure, fun and discovery – from crafts and face painting, to exploring the beach as pirates and mermaids.

4. Excursions/activities

If you want to discover the cultural side of Mauritius, the Maldives, Madagascar and the Seychelles, there’s a huge range of excursions and activities on offer. From discovering exotic and rare wildlife, to boat rides and exploring local markets, these day trips are fun, refreshing and will open your children’s eyes to a totally different world around them.

5. Eat

At Constance, we’re known for our exceptional cuisine. Children’s menus, family friendly restaurants, early dinner sittings and in-villa dining means you don’t have to compromise on the food that you eat, just to ensure that your kids will eat theirs.

Cheesy soldiers, Banana, mango and pineapple sushi, Thai fishballs, Banana berry split and Oreo cookie cheesecake are some of the delights you’ll find on our menus for children.

6. Pamper

Family friendly meals at Constance Hotels Experience

Family friendly meals

We know that many parents can’t wait to indulge in some spa pampering to restore equilibrium to frazzled minds and tired bodies. Take advantage of our kids’ clubs while you head off to the spa, or bring your children with you for one of our children’s spa treatments. With the focus on fun and trying something new, popular choices include ‘flowers in the hair’ and ‘bubble foot bath’.

7. Relax

Amidst the hubub of daily family life, it’s all too easy to forget to just sit down and relax together. At our resorts, we take care of everything so you can down tools and enjoy your holiday as a family.

We’ve thought of all the extras so you can cut back on what you need to bring with you -  nappies, cot bedding, toys, baby food, buggies – but if there’s something we haven’t included, you just need to ask.

8. Enjoy time as a couple 

Constance Moofushi Resort, Maldives

Constance Moofushi

And once your children are tucked up in bed, take advantage of our babysitting service so you can indulge in some time with your loved one. Enjoy romantic beach dinners, sunset walks along the shore, cocktails, live music, and the utter joy of a meal shared without any interruptions.

Sound tempting?

Visit our website to find out more about each of our hotels, or to check booking availability.

And if you want to keep up with the latest news, competitions and events from Constance Hotels Experience, visit our Facebook page or follow us on Twitter.

 

Luxury spa experience at Constance Ephélia

Escape to Constance Ephélia, Seychelles for all-out spa indulgence.

Hillside villa at Constance Ephelia Resort, Seychelles

Hillside villa at Ephelia

The Spa Village is a big draw at this resort, set in the heart of tropical gardens and backed by lush green mountains. One double and 11 single treatment rooms are positioned around a beautiful spa pool.

If it’s total privacy you’re after, consider booking into one of our spa villas where you can simply roll out of bed and walk a few steps to your own spa. Each villa comes with a double treatment room, hot tub, steam shower, laconarium, private garden and plunge pool.

At Ephélia, you can enjoy treatments from Shiseido and Spa de Constance. Here’s a taste of what’s currently on offer:

Shiseido

Shiseido Expresso

  • Quick Tension Release & Express Facial

Revitalising Experience

  • Relaxing massage with Lemon Grass & Cinnamon Bath

 

Spa at Constance Ephelia Resort, Seychelles

Spa at Constance Ephelia

Spa de Constance

Detoxifying Experience

  • Lemon Grass Salt Scrub
  • Green Tea Body Wrap & Head Massage
  • Back Massage with Lemon Grass Oil

Aloe Vera Relaxing Experience

  • Relaxing body massage
  • Mini facial

Find out more

Spa de Constance and Shiseido treatments at Constance Ephélia Resort – on our website.

Tempted to book a holiday? Find out about availability at Constance Ephélia or book now.

 

Essential summer style 2012

If you’re looking to up your style this summer, Vogue lifts the lid on what to buy right now.

Beach at Constance Moofushi Resort, Maldives

Constance Moofushi, Maldives

1. Vogue’s 25 Summer Sunglasses 

The right pair of sunglasses adds instant cool to any outfit. This summer there’s a rush on frames with block colour, pastels and prints.

2. Vogue’s 100 Best Bikinis and Swimsuits

Before heading to the beach, check out Vogue’s list of the 100 best bikinis and swimsuits in the shops.

3. Vogues’ Head to Toe Prints

A look that successfully made it’s way from the runway to the high street, head-to-toe prints work brilliantly in a hot climate. Find out how to pair your prints for maximum effect.

4. Designer summer sales

It’s that’s time again – Vogue gives a round-up of where to grab the best designer bargains.

5. Milan Fashion Week 2012

If you’ve got your summer style wrapped up, draw inspiration for next season and beyond the shows at Milan Fashion Week.