Interview with Nadia Periasammy, sommelier at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Nadia Periasammy is a sommelier at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius. Here she tells us what drew her to working as a sommelier, and how women are finding more opportunities in this traditonally male role.

Nadia Periasammy

Nadia Periasammy

1. What made you decide to become a sommelier, and how has your career developed?

I have never been so proud of my job since I met wine. I first discovered wine when I was in South Africa for a wine package trip. I met Mr Razvan Macici, the cellar master, who takes care of his winery to improve the quality.

He made us visit and taste many different varieties of wine. I was very impressed by the diversity and fascinating job behind all this, and I decided then to develop my career in this role.

2. What does your job involve?

I’d say, good knowledge in general about wine, making our guests feel comfortable, giving advice so guests can choose the right wine, and knowing which food pairs well with which wine.

3. What qualities do you need to be a good sommelier?

  • Good palate.
  • An ability to relate to people about wine.
  • A good follow up about the service.
  • Skill of understanding the customer.

4. In your experience, does a woman bring different qualities to the role?

Table setting at Le Prince Maurice

Table setting at Le Prince Maurice

Women are stepping up and creating a new breed of sommelier with a feminine touch.

Of course, there are still some people who are reluctant to accept the advice of a female sommelier but others find the presence of a female sommelier refreshing, less forceful and more accommodating. Women truly want to delight their guest.

5. Are there more opportunities for female sommeliers these days – how are things changing?

Yes there are definitely more opportunities for female sommeliers these days. Barriers seem to be coming down as women step up into a more prominent position in the wine world. Nowadays, female sommeliers are involved in choosing a fun and creative wine list to suit the restaurant.

Things are changing, and most men are accepting of this - encouraging women to learn more about wine. Women are now becoming certified as master sommeliers, bringing something new and much appreciated.

6. What do you most love about your job?

What I love most about my job is the good atmosphere and team spirit at Le Prince Maurice – people are always there to help and advise when I need it. We have a very interesting wine list.

As we are on a small tropical island, Mauritius, we get the chance to travel all around the world through our wine list. At Constance, we have a diverse choice of wines from different countries.

7. Can you give us your top tip for a great wine to try in 2012?

  • Cru – Beaucaillou 2nd Classified
  • Growth in 1855
  • Owner – Borie Family
  • Vintage – 2001

This wine embodies the elegant, subtle mineral aromas of raspberry.

Children's yoga at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Yoganimals at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Yogani'mals at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Young visitors to the 5* deluxe Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius are delighting in the latest offering for children – Yogani’mals.

After having introduced spa treatments for children, Le Prince Maurice is launching yoga classes for our younger guests.

What happens at Yogani’mals?

The essence of Yogani’mals is to awaken children’s senses, and teach them about yoga through simple, fun exercises.

These yoga sessions for children help lengthen attention span, improve their sense of balance, enable a better understanding of how their body functions and strengthens them physically.

Regular classes are available through Spa de Constance, lasting up to an hour.

Here’s another photo of one of our young guests trying out yogani’mals:

Child doing yoganimals at Constance Le Prince Maurice
Yogani’mals, monkey pose
 

Children’s yoga at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Yoganimals at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Yogani'mals at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Young visitors to the 5* deluxe Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius are delighting in the latest offering for children – Yogani’mals.

After having introduced spa treatments for children, Le Prince Maurice is launching yoga classes for our younger guests.

What happens at Yogani’mals?

The essence of Yogani’mals is to awaken children’s senses, and teach them about yoga through simple, fun exercises.

These yoga sessions for children help lengthen attention span, improve their sense of balance, enable a better understanding of how their body functions and strengthens them physically.

Regular classes are available through Spa de Constance, lasting up to an hour.

Here’s another photo of one of our young guests trying out yogani’mals:

Child doing yoganimals at Constance Le Prince Maurice
Yogani’mals, monkey pose
 

Spa treatments at Constance Le Prince Maurice this Christmas

Spa de Constance

Spa de Constance

Spa de Constance at the 5* deluxe Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius is offering a wonderful new treatment this festive season.

Indulge in our decadent ritual ‘Esprit du rhum’ – Rum Spirit – to relax, renew and recharge during your holiday. This treatment will give you a wonderful sense of wellness and me-time.

Prepare yourself for a Mauritian sensorial escapade with fragrances such as vanilla, cinnamon and aged amber rum. This sweetest treat will envelop your skin until dusk.

Spa treatment at Constance Hotels Experience

Indulgent treatments to restore wellbeing

The treatment starts with a refreshing foot soak and scrub with tamarind salts and lime. This is followed by a gentle exfoliation with rum, sugarcane and cinnamon to renew your skin and prepare it for exposure to the sun.

During our wonderful signature cinnamon massage, you’ll feel any tension in your body slip away.

Enter a comfort zone like never before and watch your skin glow.

Top dive sites in Mauritius

The warm waters surrounding the island of Mauritius make it an ideal year-round diving destination.

Fish in Indian Ocean

Underwater world of the Indian Ocean

Here’s a look at some of the top dive sites on the East and North West coasts of the island.

Belle Mare Plage

The dive school at Constance Belle Mare Plage caters for beginners right through to qualified divers.

Small numbers go out on the boat to the reef that’s a short distance off Belle Mare Plage, or the lagoon off Constance Le Prince Maurice.

Here, you can expect to see beautiful corals and large shoals of colourful fish. You may get a chance to see the rare stone fish, dolphins, guitar shark and turtles, as well as whales further out to sea during the winter months.

In addition to the incredible underwater creatures you’ll see, the service you get both diving and on board the boat is everything you’d expect from a 5* luxury hotel.

Ile Aux Cerfs

Scuba diver and shoal of fish

Incredible underwater world of diving

The tiny island of Ile Aux Cerfs is renowned for its sandy beaches and calm waters. The coral reef is beautiful and brimming with marine life.

You can arrange diving trips to the island either from your hotel, or once you arrive at Ile Aux Cerfs.

Grand Baie and Trou aux Biches

If you’ve already explored the East coast, and want to see more of the underwater world of Mauritius, head to the North West coast, where you’ll find some great dive sites including Whale Roc, Lost City, The Tube and Waterlilly.

Expect to see huge numbers of fish, corals, rays and sharks. There’s a wreck of a Japanese fishing boat at Stella Maru, just in front of the reef. Here, an abundance of sea life have made this their home over the last 15 years.

Share your dive experience

And if you’ve got photos from a diving experience in Mauritius, you can post them to our Constance Facebook page. We’d love to see them!

Recipe: Tamarind compote

This delicious Mauritian tamarind sauce is the perfect accompaniment to pork and fish dishes. You can buy tamarind paste from specialist food shops and larger supermarkets.

Star anise

Star anise

Serves 4
Preparation time:
20 minutes
Cooking time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 600g tamarind paste
  • 300g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 2 star anise
  • 2 dried chillies
  • 1 small stick cinnamon

1. Put the tamarind in a bowl. Add 80cl lukewarm water and crush the tamarind with your hand to remove the seeds. Sieve the tamarind with the water to extract the juice.
2. In a saucepan, mix the tamarind juice with sugar. Add fennel seeds, star anise, dried chilli and cinnamon stick. Simmer for 45 minutes on low heat, stirring often and checking that the compote doesn’t burn.
3. Remove all spices and refrigerate for up to a week.

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