Choosing wine from the menu

Whether you’re a wine connoisseur or a total newbie to the world of wine, our Head Sommelier at Constance, Jérome Faure, is here to share his expert knowledge with you.

Jerome Faure
Jerome Faure

This week, Jérome takes a look at the difference between conventional and organic wines.

Conventional versus organic wine

A conventional wine is a wine produced from grapes grown using farming methods which include the use of chemical products.

Organic wine is made from grapes certified by a recognised body such as Ecocert, as organically farmed – AB (Agriculture Biologique) in the French system.

How wine is given organic certification

AB certification requires, above all, respect for a set of guidelines aimed at banning the use of all chemical products, such as pesticides, fungicides and fertilizer. At present there are no guidelines for how the wine itself is treated.

Gaining AB certification involves wine growers subjecting themselves to lengthy administrative procedures, which is why some growers are not interested in obtaining it. But at the same time, these growers may use few or no chemical products in their vineyards. So it’s possible to come across a wine without an AB label that is nonetheless made from organically grown grapes…

Choices, choices… which wine is best?

Red wine in glass
How to choose wine

You’ll find good wines among both conventional and organic types.

To oppose organic to conventional wine is simply to oppose certified to non-certified ones. As we’ve already said, many winegrowers are organic but uncertified, and others, even if not organic are very sparing in their use of chemicals.

Some go even further by working in accordance with biodynamics (the natural rhythms of cosmic forces), whether they’re certified or not.

If you’re dining in a restaurant, the best way to decide is to rely on the selections of a good sommelier.

The Constance Group takes great care in its choice of wines, and at Constance Ephelia in the Seychelles the wine list indicates which wines are certified organic or biodynamic.

Tell us what you think

Do you prefer organic over conventinal wine? Tell us what you think. You can get in contact with us via Twitter, Facebook or use the comments section below.

Top beauty tips from expert, London Beauty Queen

If you’re looking for beauty tips, the blog from London Beauty Queen is full of great insider advice on everything from holiday sun care to the best make-up on the market right now.

London Beauty Queen

London Beauty Queen

LBQ, as she’s affectionately known, has worked in the beauty industry for the past 7 years, testing thousands of products so she can share her successes and failures with her fans – turning you all, as she says, into beauty queens.

We chatted to her about her work and her must-have beauty list for the Autumn.

How it all began

The success of the LBQ blog has taken its creator by surprise. “It began as a way for me to mix my marketing experience, love of writing and passion for beauty. At uni I did a work placement at an agency, and that really helped me to get a job in the industry after I left.”

Tips on best beauty products

Eyeshadow pots

Tips to help you choose the best make up

The online community following her tips and tricks has steadily grown. “I write about stuff that I like. You’ll find tips on luxury products as well as best-buys like the best lipgloss or mascara for under £5. People love that.”

Followers of LBQ’s blog also get an insight into high profile events such as London Fashion Week. “I can post a photo from backstage to Facebook or my blog about what’s happening right at that very moment.”

Luxe beauty must-have for A/W 2011

As for this Autumn’s luxury must-have beauty products, just launched are these two lovelies from luxury brand Rodial:

  • Glam balm lip – promising to plump your lips, and fill fine lines it includes rose wax, shea butter and vitamin E.
  • Glam balm hand – chock full with fab ingredients to give a youthful touch to your hands: olive leaf extract, vitamins C & E, grapeseed extract and Shea Butter.

Check out LBQ’s blog

Don’t miss some of the latest reviews on the London Beauty Queen blog including:

Are there any beauty tips you want to know?

And if there are any beauty tips you’d love to know about, get in touch. You can contact us via Twitter, post to Facebook or use the comments section below.

Seychelles Subios underwater festival, 4-6 November

Beach at Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

Stunning beach at Constance Lemuria

Subios - the Seychelles Festival of the Sea - gets underway at Beau Vallon at the end of this week, running from 4-6 November.

Celebrating the rich marine heritage of the Seychelles archipelago, this year’s festival theme is ‘Wonders beneath the waves’. 

Festival-goers can enjoy a host of marine-oriented activities including film-shows and the much anticipated underwater image and film competitions.

Find out more from the official Subios website.

Send us your underwater photos and videos

We’d love to see your underwater photos and videos. You can post them on the Constance Facebook page or write a comment below.

And don’t miss these inspiring articles about diving in the Seychelles:

Major winner Tom Lehman to join MCB Tour title contest

Former Major Champion and Ryder Cup Captain Tom Lehman will join a star-studded cast in Mauritius when he makes a welcome appearance on the European Senior Tour for the 2011 season-ending event, the MCB Tour Championship from 9-11 December.

Tom Lehman

Tom Lehman

American Tom Lehman is the highest profile entry for this year’s MCB Senior Tour Championship at Constance Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius.

Lehman said, ‘I have always wanted to go to Mauritius and getting this opportunity is something that I am looking forward to with much excitement and anticipation.

I can’t think of a better way to finish the 2011 season than by competing in the MCB Tour Championship in Mauritius.’

The 52-year-old from Scottsdale, Arizona, will be the first winner of the British Open Championship to appear in what has been the most prestigious professional tournament on Mauritius for the last 18 years.

Constance Belle Mare Plage attracts top players

Over the years, Belle Mare Plage has played host to a number of promising young golfers who have gone on to make their mark at the highest level.

Legend golf course, Constance Belle Mare Plage

Legend golf course, Constance Belle Mare Plage

Players such as Ian Poulter, Graeme McDowell, Gregory Havret and Jamie Donaldson – the last winner of the original Mauritius Open – have all experienced the delights and the frustrations that the unique Legend course can deliver.

In 2009, when the European Senior Tour arrived on the island, it was the turn of more established names in the world of golf – the likes of Sam Torrance, David Frost, Costantino Rocca, Jose Rivero and Manuel Pinero – to take centre stage.

But Tom Lehman will be the biggest winner to have visited Mauritius in the tournament’s history.

Lehman will undoubtedly start as favourite for the MCB Tour Championship, but with most of the top 60 Seniors Tour order-of-merit competing, plus defending Tour champion Mike Cunning, Lehman is certain to find the rivalry intense.

Find out more about the MCB Tour Championship

  • Watch this space for more information about the tournament, and don’t miss our daily blog posts during the championship – keeping you up-to-date with all the latest action.
  • If you missed our previous article, find out who else is playing this year at the 2011 MCB Tour Championship
  • Visit the official MCB Tour Championship website.

Article written by Neil Webber, golf journalist.

Last few days to enter our name the sea creature competition

Win fragrance and wine with Constance.

Diving in the Indian Ocean

Diving in the Indian Ocean

Competition closes this Friday 4 November…

We need your help to give a pet name to our friendly sea creatures below. Come up with the best name (winners will be chosen by us, so be creative) and you could win.

We’ve had some brilliant entries so far – check out the ones you’ve submitted on our blog post, Name the sea creature,  or visit our Constance Hotels Facebook page.

To enter, just comment on this blog post, or on our Twitter feed with the name or names for one or both of the below sea creatures.

Bonus: there’s a bonus sea creature to name on the Constance Hotels Facebook page – name this one and you can also win a magnum of Art de Vignes wine. Enter as many times as you like.

1. Name the anemone fish and win Serge Lutens fragrance

Clark's anemone fish, Maldives

Clark's anemone fish, Maldives

2. Name the spotted unicorn fish and win a bottle of Art de Vignes wine

Male and female spotted unicorn fish

Male and female spotted unicorn fish

Fishing trips off Moofushi

At Constance Moofushi, Maldives you can set sail on a traditional Dhoni and try your hand at fishing for your dinner.

Catch of the day, fishing trip off Moofushi

Catch of the day

Traditional sunrise fishing

What better way to start the day than aboard a Dhoni, watching the colours of the sun rise across the Indian Ocean?

In the early morning our experienced Dhoni crew will take you to the best fishing spots, and help you catch some delicious fish for your dinner.

When: Wednesdays, 7.00h-8.30h
Where: Blue Tribe Excursion Centre, at 6.50
What to bring: Sunglasses and camera

Sunset fishing on a Dhoni

Imagine the beauty of a glorious multi-coloured sunset matched with the fun of fishing. Our experienced Dhoni crew will take you to their best fishing spots and help you catch your supper for the following day.

Enjoy the view of the sun slowly sinking into the Indian Ocean, the stunning colours of the sky and the peace and tranquility of the water lapping against the Dhoni.

When: Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, 18.30h-20.00h
Where: Blue Tribe Excursion Centre at 18.20h
What to bring: Sunglasses and camera

Check out our Constance Facebook page to see photos from a recent fishing trip off Moofushi.

And if you’re tempted by the sound of these amazing fishing trips, find out more about The Jewel Island: Constance Moofushi.