The island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean is without a doubt one of the top destinations for luxury holidays. There are several factors that make it exclusive, not least the price of the plane ticket from most places around the world. The country is also fairly remote and it takes a while to get there, 10 -12 hours from Europe. Going to Mauritius is not like going to Spain or East Europe for a stag do! So if you’ve managed to leave the crowd behind and overcome the vast distance to reach Mauritius, here are a few hotels and restaurants that will ensure you are met with luxury.
Hotels in Mauritius, as elsewhere, will be at the forefront of your luxury experience. With several big names such as Le Touessrok Hotel, Maradiva Villas Resort and The Royal Palm, a favourite of Jacques Chirac and celebrities, it is hard to get any better. A very select handful of hotels will even whisk you away from the airport in a helicopter on request.
In 2010, several hotels and resorts of Mauritius were shortlisted and one won an award at the highly-coveted World Travel Awards. Those into spas won’t fail to note that several spa resorts made it on the list while golf enthusiasts will be pleased to see the Telfair Golf & Spa Resort there too. If you are into golf, then the all-year round sunny weather will keep you on the grass. Le Touessrok even has its own private island with championship golf course. Who wants to play golf in St Andrews, Scotland, after that then?
Le Touessrok has beaten tough competitors from islands such as Seychelles and Maldives to be named by the Telegraph as the best hotel in the Indian Ocean for the second year running at the 2011 Ultratravel Awards. Meanwhile, La Pirogue was awarded the Holly Award 2011 by TUI and makes it to the Top 100 hotels for 2011.
These hotels might be decades old in some cases, for example La Pirogue is over 30 years’ old, but they are regularly and extensively refurbished to keep up with the times, styles and technology. Le St Géran, another establishment in its late thirties, was last extensively updated in 1999. It was one of the pioneers of luxury tourism in Mauritius and to this day continues to set the trend.
In some of these hotels, you will have a choice of spacious suites with their own cook, butler and private balcony with stunning views of the beach heavily fringed with palm trees. Forget the towering hotels of Dubai or the concrete masses of Mediterranean resorts. A few more names of top hotels and resorts in Mauritius are The Oberoi, Le Prince Maurice, Hilton Mauritius Resort & Spa, Shandrani Resort & Spa and Sofitel Imperial.
Your luxury hotel will probably have more than one fine-dining restaurant for you to chose from but what if you want to venture beyond its walls? Fear not as nowadays, Mauritius is becoming synonymous with culinary delights.
Many of the recent additions to tourist attractions have their own in-house restaurant or at the very least a café for visitors to relax in after a few hours of exploration. This is the case at l’Aventure du Sucre (Sugar Museum) in the north with its Le Fangourin restaurant with beautiful views of soft green sugarcane fields. You will also find a restaurant, The Ferney Lodge, deep in Valley Ferney in the south east, a protected natural park ideal for hiking or enjoying stunning nature views and wildlife.
A very expensive restaurant on the outskirts of the seaside resort of Grand Bay in the north is La Langouste Grisée, while in the south is Varangue-sur-Morne, high in the hills of Chamarel and offering stunning views of the distant south coast. You are recommended to visit it during day time at least once to enjoy the views.
Although we skipped over hotel restaurants, we cannot overlook the one from le St Géran, Rasoi by Vineet run by the same chef, Vineet Bhatia, whose London Chelsea restaurant won a Michelin star. Do we also need to mention the mesmerising surrounding water-lit decor?
With so many high-class restaurants offering unique appetite-stimulating views, you can forget the over-priced cuisine of the big cities where traffic and pollution compete for your attention.