Top dive spots in the world: Madagascar

Take a look at the unspoilt waters off Madagascar teeming with rich marine life and with the added bonus of being largely unexplored by modern divers.

Diving in Madagascar

Diving in Madagascar

Barracudas in the Indian Ocean

Barracudas in the Indian Ocean

The Scorpion Fish

The Scorpion Fish

The incredible stingray

The incredible stingray

A symbiotic relationship

A symbiotic relationship

The majestic turtles of the Indian Ocean

The majestic turtles of the Indian Ocean

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Restaurants.com reveals 10 most opulent VIP restaurant treatments

Global restaurant directory Restaurants.com has outlined the 10 most lavish treatments VIP guests can expect from the world’s top fine-dining restaurants.

VIP restaurant treatments: a private dinner on the beach at Constance Moofushi

VIP restaurant treatments: a private dinner on the beach at Constance Moofushi

Listed alongside gift bags and private dining rooms is the luxury of your own section of a paradise beach with a private table for you and your friends.

‘Some of the most exclusive hotels in paradise offer beachfront dining with your own personal chef and views to die for. What’s more, there’s no one around but you.’

Sample the VIP treatment for yourself with private beach dining available at our hotels and resorts in Mauritius, Seychelles, Maldives and Madagascar.

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Top 5 luxury travel accessories 2014

Here is our list of luxury items for you’ll be longing to take on holiday with you.

Luxury travel accessories: Griffin PowerDock 5

Luxury travel accessories: Griffin PowerDock 5

Saint Laurent Classic Monogram Document Case

Carry your travel documents in ultimate style in this canvas and leather document case made in Italy by Yves Saint Laurent.

Maslin & Co Chambray Zebra Hide Beach Towel with Crossbody strap

Inspired by ‘exotic ideals of 70s hedonism’ Maslin & Co animal-hide towels (complete with leather holdall straps with envelope purse) are the latest must have items on the beaches of the world’s 5* resorts. New for 2014 is this 100% cotton, powder blue zebra print which comes in the shape of a zebra hide.

Griffin Powerdock 5

This is the ultimate gadget to keep all your devices fully charged while on holiday. The stylish Griffin Powerdock 5 can charge up to 5 devices from one power source, saving you from hunting around your hotel room looking for multiple power sockets. Specially designed for iOS devices such as iPhones and iPads, it’s 5 USB docks means that it also works for most USB-powered devices, including Kindle.

Mara Collection Currency Case from Smythson

Never get your English pounds mixed up with your Mauritian Rupees again in this stylish calf leather multiple-currency wallet from style leaders Smythson. The purse is divided into four sections each with a different colour zip so that all you have to do is remember which colour relates to which currency. As always with Smythson, you can add a personal touch with their bespoke handcrafted gold stamping service.

Aesop’s Ginger Flight Therapy & Immediate Moisture Facial Hydrosol

The perfect remedy for the effects of long-haul flights, Aesop’s carry-on aromatherapy and skincare products will leave your tired skin and senses feeling refreshed and revived. The Ginger Flight Therapy is applied to pulse points to stimulate the senses while the Immediate Moisture Facial Hydrosol is a spray-on hydration treatment which aromatically creates alertness.

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Pioneering winemaker Alex Dale visits Constance Le Prince Maurice

Innovative South African winemaker, Alex Dale, created a sumptuous wine dinner for guests and training for our sommeliers at Constance Le Prince Maurice.

Archipel, Constance Le Prince Maurice

Constance Le Prince Maurice

At the Winery of Good Hope, Dale has made it his mission to create a range of wines to showcase exciting new varieties, vineyards and even alternative winemaking techniques.

He says, ‘The fact that the pioneering settlers of 1652 named their new land The Cape of Good Hope is proof of their faith in this area’s potential. Wine grapes were among the first crops to be grown there, starting in 1655… Today, this land – and this industry – still holds so much untapped potential.’

A confirmed Burgundy lover, when Dale founded the winery in 1998 he was determined to champion the much maligned South African Chenin, which he has succeeded in putting on the map in the last 15 years.

Dale also brings his passion to the cultivation of surprising Pinot Noirs, Pinotages, Viogniers and Chardonnays.

On his visit to Constance Le Prince Maurice, Dale took the time to organise a private wine tasting with our sommeliers when he was able to tell them personally all about his wine and his winery.

Guests at the hotel were then invited to attend a special wine dinner featuring some of Dale’s favourite wines including:

  • Renaissance, Chenin blanc 2012
  • Freedom, Pinot Noir, 2012
  • Freedom 2008/2010
  • Winery of Good Hope’s Syrah 2011
  • Old Vine Viognier 2011.

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Launching Champagne Salon 2002 in the Indian Ocean

We’re looking forward to the arrival of the much anticipated Champagne Salon 2002 next week. With the Indian Ocean launch of this superb Champagne at Constance Halaveli and Constance Moofushi next week, we have some very special events lined up in the Maldives.

Didier Depond brings Champagne Salon 2002 to Constance

Didier Depond brings Champagne Salon 2002 to Constance

This world-famous, critically acclaimed Champagne is special because it is born from a single grape variety (Chardonnay), a single terroir (the Côte des Blancs) and a single cru village (Le Mesnil-sur-Oger).

Champagne Salon 2002 is only the 38th vintage released under the Champagne Salon label in the last 90 years and is the very first Champagne Salon vintage of the 21st Century.

This is because at Champagne Salon they only produce their Champagne when all the conditions are perfect and the grapes are at their very best, something which fortunately happened in 2002.

Champagne Salon was first created by Eugène Aimé Salon at the beginning of the 20th Century to prove that Chardonnay grapes from Le Mesnil-sur-Oger could produce an elegant Champagne without the need to add Pinot Noir or Pinot Meunier.

After Eugène’s death in 1943 the company was passed onto his sister and later sold to Laurent-Perrier in 1989 when it became part of the combined Salon-Delamotte house.

To celebrate the honour of Constance Halaveli and Constance Moofushi being chosen as the place to launch the vintage to the Indian Ocean and Africa we will be joined by the Director of Salon & Delamotte, Didier Depond.

Together we will be hosting two exclusive champagne dinners.

Constance Halaveli

On 4 May a Champagne Salon launch dinner will be held at Jing, Constance Halaveli

  • Marinated sea bass with curry oil, coriander sponge, apple & lime Original chenin blanc 2013
  • Seared scallops with fennel puree, pear & ginger Old vine chenin blanc 2012
  • Grilled tuna with purple broccoli, smoked avocado cream, red berry vinegar blaze
  • Dolomite cabernet franc 2012
  • Pan-seared duck breast with mushroom tart, pickled blue cheese, coffee jus Family cabernet franc 2010
  • Chocolate balloon with chocolat mousse & chocolat Croquant Red jasper 2012

Constance Moofushi

On 7 May Didier Depond will host an exclusive champagne dinner at Alizée, Constance Moofushi.

  • Gazpacho of Red Pimento, Lobster, Eggplant Confit Delamotte Blanc de Blanc N/V (France)
  • Baked Job Fish, Mango Barbecue Sauce ‘S’ Salon Blanc de Blanc 2002 (France)
  • Grilled Angus Beef fillet, Beef Cheek Meza Luna, Wilted Kale Tiano & Moreno Malbec 2010 (Argentina)
  • Milk Chocolate Parfait, Raspberry Trifle Delamotte Rose N/V (France)

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Sizzling barbecue recipes from Constance Belle Mare Plage

Nothing says summer’s on the way like the sound of friends gathered in the garden with the scent of marinated meat sizzling on the barbecue.

Sizzling barbecue recipes at Constance

Sizzling barbecue recipes at Constance

Here is a selection of our favourite BBQ marinades from our chef at Constance Belle Mare Plage.

Recipe 1: Fish marinade

  • 50g grated orange zest
  • 50g grated lime zest
  • 15g dried chilli
  • 15g black pepper
  • 10g salt
  • 50ml virgin olive oil

1. Blend all the ingredients together and let it rest for one hour.

2. Put the fish into the marinade for at least two hours, then grill.

Recipe 2: Pork breast marinade

  • 100g honey from Rodrigues
  • 100g virgin olive oil
  • 20g roasted sesame seed oil
  • 50g BBQ spices (Mexican or Cajun mix)
  • 15g salt 10g coriander seeds
  • 10g Balsamic vinegar
  • 5g soy sauce
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • ½ spring onion bouquet
  • ½ chopped thyme bouquet

1. Mix the honey and spices together, add the oils and blend together to create a paste.

2. Add all other ingredients.

3. Cut the pork breast into 1cm thick slices and put them into the marinade. Make sure, that all slices are fully covered. After some hours, turn the slices.

4. Grill on the BBQ.

Recipe 3: Chicken Marinade Sohan Singh style

  • 1kg yoghurt
  • 40g coriander powder
  • 20g cumin powder
  • 10g saffron powder
  • 30g red pepper powder
  • 10g black pepper
  • 10g salt
  • 50g garlic paste
  • 50g ginger paste
  • 10ml lemon juice
  • 80ml mustard oil

1. Blend all powders together. Add the garlic and ginger paste as well as the lemon juice and the oil. Add the yoghurt.

2. Cut the chicken in big pieces and marinate them for at least 5 hours.

3. Fit the chicken on to skewers and put them on the BBQ or in a Tandoor-style oven.

Recipe 4: Lamb marinade

  • 100ml virgin olive oil
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 10 mint leaves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 rosemary branches
  • 3 thyme branches
  • 3 cracked garlic cloves
  • Ground black pepper
  • Salt

1. Chop the herbs and fold them into the other ingredients.

2. Marinate the lamb chops for at least 2 hours before you grill them.

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