Top Scuba tips from the experts – you!

Manta Ray Adventure, Diving in the Seychelles

Manta Ray Adventure, Diving in the Seychelles

After our very successful Top Honeymoon tips blog sourced from our wonderful Twitter followers.

As we have a lot of interest in diving at our resorts we thought it would be interesting to ask our fans what advice they would give to first time divers.

Here is some of the best advice we received. I would also recommend you have a look at our Diving in the Seychelles video and our blog post on the Top 3 diving sights in the Seychelles.

@ScottDunnTravel says “Remember to always look around you – above as well as below. You never know what might be passing by or cruising overhead.” Juliet, their diving expert, also offers this sound advice ”To improve your air consumption; relax and breathe deeply and slowly – think yoga!”

@honeymoonsblog suggests “PADI courses are a great idea so you don’t spend your valuable holiday time learning the basics. Instead you can dive straight in!”

@Diversdlyte “Stay calm, breathe slowly, stay hydrated, equalise your ears and take the time to enjoy the sights underwater!”

@BSACDivers have some more helpful tips for beginners on their website http://bit.ly/m5NMF5

Let us know your scuba diving tips in the comments section below…

See also our experts’ top 3 diving spots in the Seychelles.

Luxe accommodation for the holiday of a lifetime

Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Stunning interiors at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

If you think you know all there is to know about luxury apartments and villas, think again. From water villas on stilts to presidential suites like your own private hotel, there’s a lot more to luxury accommodation than you might think.

At Constance Hotels, all our suites and villas offer luxe or super-luxe accommodation that blends with the stunning natural landscape they’re part of – and that means each offers something a little special and unique to our visitors.

Whether you’re looking for classic tropical paradise or funky villas tucked away in the rainforest, the selection below gives you a taste of what you can expect upon arrival.

Maldives

Constance Moofushi is situated in the South Ari Atoll of the Maldives archipelago. Our latest resort has won acclaim for its eco-approach and fashionable barefoot chic. All villas are exquisitely decorated using natural materials.

 

 

Constance Moofushi water villa

Constance Moofushi water villa

  • Beach Villas come with private sun deck, and ocean views from the bedroom and bathroom.
  • Water Villas set on stilts offer seclusion and direct access to the sea from a private sundeck.
  • Senior Water Villas are generously sized, and include a private outdoor bath tub, unobstructed views of the sunrise and direct access to the water.

Constance Halaveli is situated in the North Ari Atoll. Designed with privacy in mind, these villas all feature private plunge pools, are decorated in wood and marble, and are located on the beach or over the water. Guests can take advantage of in-villa dining, as well enjoying the resort’s restaurants.

Constance Halaveli water villa

Sleek interiors at Constance Halaveli water villa

  • Beach Villas enjoy a tropical garden backdrop, and are decorated using wood in contemporary Maldivian style. The double storey beach villas offer more space over two floors, with indoor and outdoor showers and a furnished terrace.
  • Water Villas are set along a jetty that weaves across the calm waters below. Offering romance and privacy for some perfect castaway moments, previous guests have found it hard to drag themselves away from these beautiful villas. Read their reviews of Constance Halaveli
  • Presidential Beach Villa is the ultimate in get-away-from-it-all luxury with a larger plunge pool, dining room and private gym.

Seychelles

Constance Ephelia is situated on two of the most beautiful beaches on the island of Mahé, overlooking the marine national park of Port Launay. Although a large resort, Ephelia enjoys a unique location and is designed to make you feel you’re the only people there.

Constance Ephelia hillside villas, bathroom

Decadent bathroom at Constance Ephelia hillside villas

  • There’s a great choice of Junior and Senior Suites, with Villas situated on the beach (all include a private pool) or atop the hillside looking across the water.
  • Spa Villas – if you need your senses pampering and a place to indulge and unwind, Ephelia’s sublime spa villas will bring harmony to your senses. They’re equipped with a large hot tub, steam shower, sauna, double treatment room for massages, spacious bedroom and tranquil gazebo area – perfect for meditation or cocktails, depending on the mood.
  • Presidential Villa is perfect for William and Kate style indulgence. The villa comes with breathtaking views across the sea, 3 bedrooms, its own gym, private spa, pool and outdoor lounge and dining area.

Constance Lémuria is set amidst lush vegetation on the pristine island of Praslin. The white sandy beaches of Anse Kerlan are turtle nesting sites, and are surrounded by rare flora and fauna.

Constance Lemuria Presidential Villa

Constance Lemuria Presidential Villa, Seychelles

Materials used in the sleek design of the resort include wood, marble, stone and pink granite.

  • Junior and Senior Suites offer intimacy and blend with the landscape, offering stunning views across the Indian Ocean. You can relax on your private terrace under the shade of the overhanging palm trees.
  • Luxurious Villas offer a bespoke service as they come complete with their own villa master who will tailor the Constance service to your individual requirements. The villas open directly on to the gardens and beach, and include lounge, dining room and swimming pool.
  • Presidential Villa at Lémuria offers all-out privacy and indulgence, more akin to staying in your own private hotel than a villa within a resort. Perched on the granite blocks of the southern tip of the Anse Kerlan, the villa comes with 3 suites, an outside Jacuzzi, study and dining room. The ultimate in decadence, there are 3 swimming pools situated at different levels, all leading to a private beach.

Madagascar

Constance Tsarabanjina offers a fabulous luxurious getaway on its own private island. Situated in the north-western part of Madagascar, Tsarabanjina is one of the islets of the Mitsio Archipelago.

Constance Tsarabanjina bungalow

Constance Tsarabanjina bungalow, Madagascar

If you want to play Robinson Crusoe without leaving behind your luxuries, this is the place to escape to. There’s no TV and no phones (apart from your mobile). Instead, you can enjoy the island paradise of white sandy beaches, lush tropical vegetation and coral reefs brimming with fish.

  • Each thatched roof bungalow overlooks the sea and is situated on either the north or south beach. This is 5 star luxury with the added bonus of total seclusion from the outside world.

Mauritius

Constance Le Prince Maurice is a boutique hotel on the eastern coast of Mauritius set on a peninsula protected from the winds.

Constance Le Prince Maurice suite on stilts

Constance Le Prince Maurice suite on stilts, Mauritius

  • Décor is inspired by the spice trade. Junior Suites have thatched roofs, indoor sitting area, bedroom, bathroom and private terrace or balcony. The Senior Villas offer direct access to the beach and a private pool or outdoor soaking bath.
  • The deluxe Princely Suite combines space, superb design and privacy. Made up of two junior and one senior suite it is set in its own garden, and comes complete with two pools and 3 private terraces each with a different view across the lagoon.

Constance Belle Mare Plage is set on the eastern coast of Mauritius, along a 2km white sand beach against a backdrop of 15 hectares (37 acres) of tropical gardens and protected by a coral reef.

Constance Belle Mare Plage junior suite bathroom

Constance Belle Mare Plage junior suite bathroom, Mauritius

  • Junior Suites, some beachfront, are equipped with private balcony or terrace. The Deluxe Suites face the sea, and include a living room and option to connect to a Prestige Room, ideal for families.
  • The Villas come with private pool, and evoke romance and tranquillity surrounded by small lakes, frangipani flowers and coconut groves.
  • The Presidential Villa is set in its own garden area, offering total privacy. The villa comes with lounge, dining room, kitchen, private pool and large veranda. Two villa masters attend to the needs of guests, making sure your stay is tailor-made for you.

Mauritius Marathon – 19 June 2011

Marathon runner

Marathon runner

The Mauritius Marathon takes place on Sunday 19 June 2011, starting at 6.30am.

The course is just under 43kms long, and weaves along the south west corner of the island.

Starting at Tamarin, runners pass through the fishing village of La Gaulette, the mountain of Le Morne and onto the ‘Great wild south’.

Half marathon runners start the race at 7am at La Prairie in Baie du Cap.

The race ends on the beach at Saint Felix.

Find out more about:

Win a Magnum of Champagne by sharing your romantic holiday snaps!

Deutz Champagne BottleAt Constance Hotels Experience, we’ve just launched our first Twitter competition to say thank you to everyone of our blog subscribers, Facebook fans, Twitter followers and new friends.

You can win a Magnum of Deutz Champagne simply by Tweeting us your most romantic holiday snaps. You can enter as many times as you like and the Magnum will be posted directly to your door.

To enter is simple – just Tweet the following, including a link to your picture:

“My most romantic holiday snap for @constancehotels #winfizz giveaway LINK TO PHOTO HERE”

Twitter Competiton Example Entry

The link should go to the picture, wherever you’ve uploaded it, be that your blog, a twitter photo service like Twitpic or Yfrog or your website. Below is an example:

Example Twit Pic

Close date
The competition is running from 9am GMT Wednesday 8 June to Midnight GMT Wednesday 15 June 2011.

We’re looking forward to seeing your romantic holiday snaps – and good luck. The champagne is already chilling for you.

Please read the Twitter Competition terms and conditions before entering. All entries are bound by these conditions.

The Constance Halaveli beach tandoori experience

At Constance Halaveli, in the Maldives, we offer a unique dining experience at our Meeru restaurant.

Nightime at Meeru beach restaurant, Constance Halaveli

Meeru beach restaurant at Constance Halaveli

The Halaveli tandoor oven is the first of its kind in the Indian Ocean - created for us by our Engineering Department.

Cooking delicious meat and fish dishes

Guests can enjoy a wide selection of top quality meat and fish, baked ‘à la minute’ in front of them directly on the beach. This cooking method preserves the integrity of the ingredients and ensures a perfect texture: crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside.

The engineering behind the tandoor oven

The oven is based on a traditional Indian tandoor oven, and is similar in shape and the way it works. The tandoor is made out of a steel cylinder and lined with a combination of concrete and glass that is fused together by burning charcoal.

Constance Halaveli beach tandoor oven

Meat and fish taste delicious when cooked in the Constance Halaveli beach tandoor oven

It’s then buried in the sand with stones placed on the outside to insulate the heat. Compared to traditional models, the Halaveli tandoor oven reaches the extreme temperature of 700°C after being lit for approximately 5 hours and burns through 10 kgs of charcoal in an evening.

Seasoning the oven

Each new tandoor is ‘seasoned’ with a homemade spice mix (masala mix), which is unique to each tandoor Chef. The exquisite flavour of the food is the result of the combination of the shape, concrete and glass construction and the extreme high temperatures.

Tandoor oven at the Meeru beach restaurant, Constance Halaveli

Tandoor oven at the Meeru beach restaurant, Constance Halaveli

Read some of the rave reviews about Constance Halaveli on TripAdvisor posted recently. Find out more about the resort in our spotlight on Constance Halaveli.

2011 Epsom Derby

Horses racing at the 2011 Epsom Derby

2011 Epsom Derby

At the 2011 Epsom Derby on Saturday 4 June, 13 racehorses ran. There was a thrilling finish as Pour Moi came up from last to win, just beating Treasure Beach over the line. Carlton House came in third.

Royal couple William and Catherine, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, spent the day at the races. Ladies day took place on Friday 3 June.

Find out more about the 2011 Epsom Derby.