Plan your escape to the sun

With the new year just around the corner, take some time out to start dreaming up your next holiday in the sun.

To get you in the mood, here’s the beautiful beach at Constance Halaveli, Maldives. Visit our website to find out more about luxury holidays in the Indian Ocean.

Constance Halaveli, Maldives

Constance Halaveli, Maldives

Wine with honours at Le Prince Maurice

At Le Prince Maurice we are very proud of our award-winning assistant head sommelier Jorald Julie.

This year Mauritius-born Jorald won the coveted title of Best Sommelier of Mauritius by the Association of Sommeliers of Mauritius following a live final at Château Mon Désir at the Maritim Hotel.

No stranger to winning, Jorald had already won an award back in March at this year’s famous Bernard Loiseau Culinary Festival.

Jorald was selected as winner against some of the best Mauritian sommeliers in a competition to choose the best wines to match a dinner cooked by the guest European Michelin-starred chefs.

Jorald’s tips for wines to try in 2013

  • Champagne Delamotte Brut – fine bubbles with nice complexity 
  • Springfield Estate Life from stone Sauvignon Blanc from the Robertson Region South Africa – exotic fruit flavours and marvellous freshness for summertime.
  • Clos Henri Pinot Noir from the Malborough Region New Zealand – Red fruit and spicy note, fresh and elegant in mouth

Watch Jorald Julie’s beginner’s guide to wine tasting below, or find out more about Constance Le Prince Maurice on our website.

Cocktail recipe: Flaming Mai Tai

It’s party time and we’re celebrating with our Flaming Mai Tai from the Laguna Bar at Constance Le Prince Maurice.

Ingredients:

  • 4c l New Grove Rhum
  • 2cl Orange Curacao Triple Sec
  • 2cl Apricot Brandy
  • 1cl Lemon Juice
  • 1.5cl Orgeat Syrup
  • 5cl Pineapple Juice
  • 3 cl St Aubin Rhum
  • Cinnamon Powder
  • Garnish: Pineapple and Mint Leaves

Method:
Pour all of the ingredients into a Boston glass in the order stated. Shake well and then single strain into glass. Add crushed ice.

Garnish:
Place two thin slices of pineapple in a wine glass, dust with cinnamon powder and pour about 30ml St Aubin Rhum into the glass. Light and let the liquid burn so as to caramelize the fruit a little (10 seconds). Then pour, flaming, over the top of the cocktail. When the flame stops, add a straw and a sprig of fresh mint.

Before the garnish, a splash of crème de Peche can be added if preferred.

Coming home to nest – Turtle Watch Lémuria

At Constance Lémuria there is more to celebrate this month than Christmas, for December is the peak of the turtle-nesting season.

Baby turtles at Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

Baby turtles at Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

The endangered hawksbill and green turtles return year after year to our quiet, idyllic beaches on the island of Praslin in the Seychelles between October and February. This season our Turtle Manager has already had four nests of turtles hatching out.

Each female turtle can lay up to a thousand eggs a season, returning to the beach to lay as many as five times and laying up to 200 eggs at a time.

Monitoring turtle activity

At Lémuria we monitor each nest and each turtle to ensure their safety. We will continue to watch the nests for the next two months until all the eggs have hatched.

Under the supervision of our Turtle Manager, guests at Lémuria can have the unique experience of watching the females come up on the beach to lay and later see the baby turtles move down to the sea.

Our Turtle Preservation Programme, run alongside the Marine Conservation Society Seychelles and with support from the local community and hotel guests, is crucial to the survival of these beautiful creatures. Ask at the resort to find out more about our nesting turtles.

Find out more

 

Diving deep into scuba blogging

Discovering diving is to discover a new world of glorious colours and beautiful sea creatures. Here’s a round-up of the best scuba-diving blogs out there right now.

Diving Indian Ocean, Madagascar

Diving off the coast of Madagascar

Aquaviews – this blog makes up part of the Aquaviews online magazine and takes a global view of scuba diving. Posts include news, reviews, features and photos from around the world. An informative all-rounder.

Divescover – Divescover is a destination guide site for divers and its blog features posts on everything from ocean conservation and dive site reviews to information about some of the amazing species divers are likely to see all featuring beautiful photos.

Dive in – An on-line scuba diving magazine with a blog covering diving tips and safety issues, review and fun features as well as species spotlights.

Dive – Including guest bloggers such as comedienne turned clinical psychologist Pamela Stephenson, this is a site which takes a lively, edgy and informed look at the world of diving. Follow Pamela Stephenson on Twitter @PamelaStephensn.

Tsarabanjina – a special garden in the Indian Ocean

Madagascar has always been a land of promise to travellers attracted by the island’s unique natural environment. The lush tropical forests of Tsarabanjina hold many magnificent prizes for nature lovers.

Traveller's Palm, Madagascar

Traveller’s Palm, photo taken by Fabrice Rose

Highlights amongst its exotic flora include:

The Traveller’s Palm – No-one is quite sure of the origin of this nickname for the ravenala madagascariensis. One theory says that it was considered a gift for thirsty travellers because of the rainwater held in its stems. Another theory says its name came from the fact that its fans tends to grow in an east-west direction making it a crude compass for lost travellers. In fact the plant is not even a true palm but a member of the bird-of-paradise family with similar white flowers.

Vanilla – Not indigenous to the island, vanilla has become one of the island’s most important exports, its lush, tropical climate making it ideal for growing the beautiful, fragrant plant. In order to harvest the prized pods growers can wait up to 5 years for the vine to mature and flower.

Pachypodium – this thick green spiny tree is related to group of succulent spine-bearing trees and shrubs native to Africa and belongs to the dogbane family.

Come and stay with us on Tsarabanjina and let our expert guides show you around this beautiful island and introduce you to these and other fascinating species on a series of guided walks.

Find out more