'Paradise' Constance hotels featured in Sunday Times Travel magazine

Constance Ephelia hillside villas

Constance Ephelia hillside villas

For Indian Ocean inspiration, check out the October edition of The Sunday Times Travel magazine.

With special features on the Indian Ocean, as well as hotel reviews, Constance Ephélia, Constance Moofushi and Constance Lémuria are all tipped as paradise perfection.

Head to your local newsagent for a copy or visit The Sunday Times website to find out more.

 

Top 5 diving sites at Tsarabanjina, Madagascar

If you’re looking for a tropical island escape, served up with some of the best diving in the world, up-the-ante and head to Constance Tsarabanjina off the North West coast of Madagascar.

Swimming with turtles, off Madagascar

Swimming with turtles at Tsarabanjina

Tsarabanjina is a by-word for laid-back luxury – it’s a place to hunker down and immerse yourself in the surrounding natural beauty.

The area offers superb diving sites for all levels. Currents can be strong at times but dive masters will always assess conditions.

Here’s a taste of what you can expect.

1. The 4 Frères

Four small volcanic islets are situated a 15 minute boat ride away from Tsarabanjina.

  • First Frère - offers a succession of slabs paving a gradual slope stretching between 5-18 metres deep. For divers of all levels, but the current could make things difficult for inexperienced divers at times. Here you’ll find great varieties of soft corals and sponges with dotted-blue rays, crayfish, groupers of all sizes, turtles and moray eels.
  • Second Frère - offers an impressive dip, descending some 27 metres and lined with big oysters and soft corals. Sea creatures include turtles, jack fish, king mackerel, yellow snappers and grunt fishes around slabs lying deep down at the bottom. Reserved for level 2 divers.
  • Fourth Frère – more slabs of all sizes lying on a 45° slope, going as deep as 25 metres. A refuge for huge shoals of yellow snappers, groupers, crocodile fishes, scorpion fishes and colourful corals. A great experience for divers of all levels.

2. The Tétons

Beautiful coral

Beautiful coral

Two small rocky peaks which peer out of the surface, close to the 4 Frères. Below the surface, you move through a labyrinth of slabs, corridors, and grottoes between 5-22 metres deep.

You’re likely to see huge groupers, crocodile and scorpion fish, and friendly platax fish. There’s also a very beautiful sponge garden. Accessible for divers of all levels.

3. Vatobe

A few minutes off Tsarabanjina, 2 underwater reefs on a sandy plateau at about 14 metres deep. It’s a descent in deep blue waters on a very colourful reef.

You’ll see an impressive shoal of yellow snappers, fusiliers, angel fishes, groupers, balloon fish, jack fish and crocodile fish. Accessible for divers of all levels.

4. Kassimo

Some 15 minutes north of Tsarabanjina, this is a long underwater barrier lying between 5-15 metres deep, covered with corals of extraordinary colours.

Diving in Madagascar

Diving in Madagascar

There’s rich and abundant fauna of snappers, diagramme voiliers, grunt fish, groupers, fusiliers, and enormous sting rays. Occasionally you’ll see a grey or white-dotted shark and a giant loach. Accessible for divers of all levels.

5. The 2 Soeurs

Two tiny islets facing Tsarabanjina, on a sandy plateau lying 10 metres deep. Here there are some beautiful potato-shaped corals inhabited by variegated fauna made up of grunt fish, snappers, fusiliers, groupers and angel fishes. An easy dive for all levels.

Michelin star chef Serge Gouloumès visits Constance Lémuria and Ephélia

Chef Serge Gouloumes

Chef Serge Gouloumes

World class Chef Serge Gouloumès is cooking up a feast at our resorts in the Seychelles this week.

The Michelin star chef from Relais & Châteaux, Le Mas Candille in Mougins, France is visiting Constance Lémuria and Constance Ephélia from 17-21 October. Restaurant Candille is known as one of the best restaurants on the Cote d’Azur.

Special menus are being prepared at Lémuria and Ephélia, so guests can experience Serge Gouloumès’ culinary talent and passion for cooking.

Here’s a taste of what’s on offer this week: 

Monday 17 October 2011

Candlelit dinner at the Seahorse restaurant

  • Amuse Bouche 
  • Candille Foie Gras Tatin with Armagnac
  • Rock lobster roasted in its shell, simmeredSoissonsbeans smoked with tarragon
  • Exotic ilot, coconut caviar flavoured with vanilla, marinated & roasted Victoria pineapple, mango sorbet on chocolate notes

Tuesday 18 October 2011

Constance Lemuria Seahorse restaurant

Constance Lemuria Seahorse restaurant

Gala dinner at the Seahorse restaurant

  • Amuse Bouche
  • Braised white cabbage leaves, flacked crab, full-flavoured sea juice
  • Scallops skewer, celery mash with lardo di Colonata, Parmigiano Reggiano crisps
  • Glazed slab of Angus fillet, tataki sauce, butternut squash cubes, grilled leek, fried onions
  • Hazelnut macaroon, white chocolate ganache with winter truffle, caramelised pecan nuts, praline ice cream

Thursday 20 & Friday 21 October 2011

Constance Ephelia, Cyann restaurant

Constance Ephelia, Cyann restaurant

 

Dinner at Cyann restaurant

  • Amuse Bouche
  • Egg in truffle surprise, wild mushroom duxelles, chervil foam
  • Scallops skewer, sweet chestnut biscuit and purée, braised endives with mandarin juice
  • Duckling fillet in mild spiced glaze, wok-sautéed vegetables with coriander
  • Exotic ilot, coconut caviar flavoured with vanilla, marinated & roasted Victoria pineapple, mango sorbet on chocolate notes 

Friday 21 October 2011

Special lunch at Cyann restaurant

Four hands special menu by the Chefs Serge Gouloumès and Denis Jean-Jacques.

•        Surprise menu

Architecture and design at Constance Moofushi

Moofushi from the air

Moofushi from the air

Continuing our series on the architectural and design inspiration behind our luxury resorts, here’s an insight into the creativity that went into developing the thrillingly beautiful Constance Moofushi.

A pearl in the middle of the Maldives archipelago, Moofushi is situated on The Jewel Island in the South Ari Atoll.

Opened in November 2010, the island has a unique butterfly design and daring architecture that was developed by Mauritian architect Jean-Michel d’Unienville and French design team Marc Hertrich and Nicolas Adnet of Studio MHNA.

Robinson-Crusoe chic

 

At Moofushi, the focus is on offering the ultimate in bare-foot sophistication – luxury without being flashy.

On arrival by sea plane or water taxi, you can walk barefoot straight onto the sand. At the reception, the welcome desks are made of beautifully worn wood, and the chandelier of recycled glass bottles.

This restful space gives you a sense of the wonderfully quirky and stylish mood this resort exudes.

Environmental consideration

Environmental issues were key to the design. Careful consideration has been taken to preserve the environment through efficient and non-polluting materials. Think luxury and simplicity – wood, ropes, lamps in the spirit of the marine lanterns, huge trunk-like wardrobes in the villas and many other surprises.

Communal spaces and spa

Manta bar

Manta bar on the beach

The team behind Moofushi has created communal spaces where guests can chill out at any time of day. The lounge is a delightful mix of private club meets Ernest Hemingway hang-out – all leather armchairs, bamboo screens and slow-whirring ceiling fans.

Drink in the tropical night air at the bar, or seek out the VIP spot, lounges on the beach, night spots, isolated restaurant tables and the more classical space close to incredible buffets.

The spa is built above the water to provide a fantastically relaxing space, and each treatment room faces the turquoise sea.

Land and water villas

Inside a beach villa at Moofushi

Relaxed luxury at Moofushi

Getting a good night’s sleep is essential on holiday. At Moofushi there are 110 land and water villas to choose from, all set in an intimate location of lagoons, sandbanks and woodlands.

If you choose our stilted accommodation over the water, you’ll get privileged access to the sea and much longed for privacy – especially for those of you on honeymoon.

 

 

Weekly round-up: 10-16 October 2011

Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

This weekly feature offers a round-up of the content on our blog from the past week, in case you missed anything.

Split into categories, it’s another way for you to easily find the posts of value to you.

Special offers

Events

Culinary

Behind the scenes

Spa and sport

Golf: MCB Senior Tour Championship 2011

The countdown to this year’s season-ending European Senior Tour Championship in Mauritius is well under way. Constance Belle Mare Plage is preparing to add another chapter to its distinguished history.

Legend at Belle Mare Plage

Legend at Belle Mare Plage

The 54-hole MCB Senior Tour Championship takes place from 9-11 December 2011. It provides the climax to a week-long programme of golf competition that includes a pro-am and a number of amateur tournaments.

Who’ll be playing this year?

The closing date for entry to the tournament is late November. Among those who have already confirmed their attendance are:

  • David Frost – last year’s MCB Open champion
  • Roger Chapman – runner-up
  • Peter Fowler – current European Senior Tour order-of-merit leader
  • Mike Cunning – the winner of the 2010 Tour Championship
  • Sam Torrance – successful Ryder Cup player and captain
  • Carl Mason – the Senior Tour’s leading career earner
  • Boonchu Ruangkit – last season’s order-of-merit winner
  • Kevin Sturgeon – 2009 MCB Open champion.

In addition, Welshman Mark Mouland, a recent winner in Portugal in his first year on the Senior Tour, will be relishing a return to the Legend course where, in 2002 and 2003, he won the Mauritius Open in its original format as an end-of-year invitation event.

History of the event

Legend golf course

Legend golf course

It’s just 2 years since Constance Hotels Experience and the Mauritius Commercial Bank joined forces to stage the first of 2 hugely successful Senior Tour events on the Belle Mare Plage Legend golf course.

This year, the partnership is hosting the lucrative MCB Senior Tour Championship - the season’s finale. Entry is restricted to the leading earners on this year’s European Senior Tour and past winners of a major or seniors’ major.

Adding extra interest this year will be the presentation of the prestigious John Jacobs Trophy to the player who finishes top of the Senior Tour order-of-merit.

Twelve months ago that honour went to Boonchu Ruangkit from Thailand, but this year’s recipient may not be decided until the final putt has been sunk in the Tour Championship.

The Legend

The Legend

Not that the Legend course is any stranger to final round drama. It has a long history of producing the unexpected, as Roger Chapman, Welshman Phillip Price and a number of other players will testify.

Results and news from the tournament

During the event, we’ll be posting up-to-the-minute news on this blog and the Constance Facebook page.

Results, reports and features will also appear each day on the official MCB Tour Championship website.

Article written by Neil Webber, golf journalist.