Name that sea creature: win champagne, perfume and wine

Snorkelling in the Maldives

Snorkelling in the Maldives

Win champagne, fragrance and wine with Constance.

We need your help to give a pet name to our friendly sea creatures below. They live in the Indian Ocean off Constance Halaveli in the Maldives.

Come up with the best name (winners will be chosen by us, so be creative) and you could win.

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 Deutz Champagne. Enter as many times as you like.

We’ll be choosing a winner next Friday 22 July, so get creative. Read our competition Terms and Conditions.

1. Name the Sea Anenome and win a Serge Lutens Fragrance

Sea anemone

Sea anemone in the waters off Constance Halaveli, Maldives

2. Name the Stingray and win a bottle of Art De Vignes wine

Ray in the Indian Ocean off Constance Halaveli, Maldives

Jenkin's Whiptail Stingray

Why not send us your underwater photos from the Maldives or tell us about your experiences of diving and snorkelling in paradise. You can get in touch with us via Twitter, Facebook or the comments section below.

Also, don’t miss our blog post about snorkelling paradise: the Maldives.

Good luck naming our sea creatures – remember, the names we deem most creative, funny or entertaining will win.

Below are our dive masters at Halaveli who took these shots. Lucky, aren’t they.

Dive masters from Constance Halaveli, Maldives

Dive masters from Constance Halaveli, Maldives

5 places to pause with a book at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Aerial view of beach and infinity pool at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Beach and infinity pool at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Guests at Constance Le Prince Maurice enjoy 60 hectares of beautiful tropical gardens bordering the still waters of the lagoon.

The resort is brimming with quiet spaces decked out with enormous sofas, chaise longues and sun loungers.

Grab a book and head to these 5 spots at Constance Le Prince Maurice, where you can indulge your literary senses, and enjoy the peace and stillness.

 

The beach

Here you’ll find fine white sand, calm turquoise waters, palm trees, super-comfortable sun loungers and first class service from the ‘sand butlers’. The beach is just a stone’s throw from the junior suites and villas. The beach gets the sun all day, and you can even watch the sun set out to the West from the comfort of your sun lounger.

 Looking East over the bay

Tucked away behind the junior suites, you’ll find this tranquil spot overlooking the easterly side of the resort. Hidden away from the restaurants and bars, the only sound here is of the sea and a gentle breeze.

The Pool Bar

The infinity pool is breathtakingly beautiful, warm and comes complete with a bar that you can swim up to. Take a seat at the water’s edge, ring the bell for service and soak up the views across the pool. The pool bar is warmed by the afternoon sun, making it perfect for languid moments when all you want to do is pause and enjoy.

Laguna Bar

Laguna Bar

The Library

If you’re hankering after a more traditional space where you can put your feet up and get stuck into your literary tome, head to the library. It’s air-conditioned and furnished with comfy arm chairs and shelves of books, newspapers and DVDs to borrow.

Laguna Bar

Flanking the infinity pool is the Laguna Bar. Fans whirr above huge chairs and sofas furnished in purples and reds, and the polished wooden floor feels super-luxurious. There are no walls or windows along the side of the bar so you can enjoy uninterrupted views across the pool and out to sea. If there’s a downpour of summer rain, head here – enjoy the chill out music and sound of water from the pool, order drinks and snacks from the bar, and get reading.

Can you recommend a good read? We’d love to know what books you’d suggest taking to read in these places.

You can get in contact with us via Twitter, Facebook or the comments section below.

The giant pineapples of Madagascar

At our Constance Tsarabanjina Lodge in Madagascar, we cook with mainly local produce to provide the freshest ingredients to our guests.

Woman holding a giant pineapple from Madagascar

Giant pineapples in Madagascar can weigh up to 5kg

The North of the country is rich in amazing fruits and vegetables. No pesticides or chemical fertilizers are used – it’s nature at its very best.

If you head to the market in Nosy Bé, you’ll be struck not only by the abundance of fruit and vegetables but also by the size of everything on offer.

One of the most incredible sights are the giant pineapples. They come from the North-Western region of Sakatia or Marovato where the soil is particularly hot and humid. Here, the pineapples can grow up to whopping 5 kg.

Here are two great ways to enjoy the amazing flavours of pineapple:

  • Peel and cut the pineapple into wedges, then sprinkle with dried chilli flakes and salt crystals.
  • Peel and thinkly slice the pineapple, baste with a light vanilla syrup and serve with a scoop of lemongrass sorbet.

Simple, fresh and tasty.

Recipe: fromage blanc with strawberries and pumpkin seeds

Enjoy this summer’s bumper crop of strawberries with a recipe from Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius.

Star anise

Star anise

Serves 4:
Preparation time:
20 minutes
Marinating time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:
600g fromage blanc
120g strawberries (keep 4 for garnishing)
3 sprigs of mint (keep 4 for garnishing)
1 star anise
2 tbsp shelled pumpkin seeds
2 tsp olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp honey

1. Toast the pumpkin seeds for 5 minutes in a 180°C oven.
2. Chop the mint leaves.
3. Coarsely crush the star anise and put it into an empty pepper mill.
4. Rinse, drain and tail the strawberries. Cut them into quarters. In a salad bowl, mix them with the olive oil, lemon juice, chopped mint. Grind a little star anise on top and let rest for about 20 minutes.
5. Mix the fromage blanc with honey and grind some more star anise onto it.
6. Divide the strawberries into four elegant glasses, add the fromage blanc, then the pumpkin seeds. Grind some star anise on top and decorate with one whole strawberry and a mint leaf. Serve chilled.

Let us know how you get on, and send us your comments and pictures of your own fromage blanc with strawberries and pumpkin seeds. You can get in contact with us via Twitter, Facebook or the comments section below.

You can also purchase the Constance Prince Maurice recipe book that contains this recipe and 50 more from our online store.

Constance Hotels Experience sponsors Team Indian Ocean 3100

3100 rowing team

James Kayall, Ollie and Ed Wells, Tom Kelly row across Indian Ocean

A four-man crew set out on the Indian Ocean Rowing Race 2011 from Geraldton, Western Australia on 22 April, aiming to cross the Indian Ocean to Mauritius in record time.

At Constance, we’ve been eagerly awaiting their arrival on 6 or 7 July.

The rowers should complete their record attempt at Grand Bay Yacht Club, situated in a beautiful bay in the north of Mauritius and which has a long tradition of welcoming foreign sailors visiting the island.

The crew consists of James Kayll, Ollie and Ed Wells, and Tom Kelly, and is aiming to raise £100,000 from the public for four charities:

  • Mark Evison Foundation
  • Light Dragoons Charitable Trust (The Colonel’s Fund)
  • Compassion UK
  • Access Sport.

The scale of the challenge is enormous – only 11 boats have ever successfully
completed the crossing. They are also rowing without the usual aid of a support vessel.

The race is organised by Woodvale Challenge Ltd from the UK.

We’ll update you with the story of their crossing once they’ve arrived in Mauritius.

Videos of paradise!

Our Facebook page now has a number of video clips and tours of our resorts in the Maldives, Seychelles, Mauritius and Madagascar.

Below is a taster of the wonderful Constance Ephelia Resort in Seychelles. You can find more videos, photos and information on our Facebook page.