Restaurant Stars, Shanti Maurice Mauritius (Restaurant Review)

Whilst staying at Shanti Maurice recently, we paid a visit to the Stars restaurant and sat on the deck under the dark velvet sky with twinkling stars.  The culinary influences are South African, but the ingredients are primarily local.

The restaurant uses only the finest and freshest ingredients whether caught from the Ocean or cultivated in their own gardens or sourced from a local farms nearby.

We asked to sit outside where it was easily accessible and upon our arrival the table had already been laid and was ready right next to the pool. The menu was a delight and we had problems deciding….

Early Flavours were the starters and  

From the Water Gods 

Sea Bass Tiradito         sliced raw seabass in a spicy citrus dressing, coriander and avocado guacamole

Stars Tuna Tartare      garlic, ginger, balsamic and miso infused crab and egg fritatta

Marlin Carpaccio        fresh marlin carpaccio with hearts of palm and olive and lemon and basil emulsion

Braised Octopus             salad of braised octopus with lemongrass spiced gazpacho

Wasabi Prawns from Mozambique       wasabi coated prawns with sweet papaya salsa

Seafood Broth with Coconut                  south east asian seafood soup with lemongrass and mushrooms

Salted Chili Squid        squids in a crispy tempura batter sea salt  and garlic  chili sauce

I choose the salted chili Squid whilst Hans chose the Wasabi Prawns from Mozambique

Hans really enjoyed his prawns but I was a bit disappointed with the squid which was a bit bland.

For the second course we had many choices:

From the farm:

Venison “Tataki”    venison loin with rosemary soya glaze

Beet root Carpaccio and Mozzarella Tempura       mustard grains dressing

Bobotie     Cape Malay curried beef casserole with raisins and apple chutney

Mojo Chicken from Souilliac   pan roasted chicken breast  in a citrus marination  with oregano

served with fried banana and sour cream

Five Spiced Pork Belly   crispy tongue and  chorizo braised cabbage

Tandoori Baby Chicken roasted with  tandoori  marination and served  with crispy tapioca

Braised Black Pepper Beef Cheek  sticky yam mash

Simmered Karoo Lamb Shank  in soya and sichuan pepper broth, with barley risotto, christophine

and green peas

From the Water Gods

Seafood Skewer      lime, garlic & chili flavored seafood skewer mixed beans and garden herbs

Grilled Tuna Mi-cuit    confit onion ,bacon and saffron veloute

Oven roasted Seabass   anchovy butter crumbs, olives and roasted mediterranean roots

Ginger Poached Ombrine   slow poached  in a ginger broth, sesame oil , spring onions and steamed rice

Pan Seared ‘Catch of the Day’  seafood laksa , bok choy and mushrooms

Desserts

Baked Vanilla Yoghurt   vanilla infused baked yoghurt with strawberry and balsamic compote 

Sweet Papaya and Passion Fruit Bake    sabayon of sugarcane  and rum

Madagascar Chocolate Snicker Bar    brownie, ganache, caramel ,toffee mousse and roasted

macadamia  nuts

Lemon Tart   tart with rodrigues lemon curd accompanied with lemon thyme sorbet

Coconut Shell      With coconut mousse, sorbet, crunchy flakes and coconut rum

Selection of Homemade Ice Creams & Sorbets

Coffee

Mauritian Coffee     mauritian vanilla rum, hot coffee,  sugar, double cream

Calypso Coffee      kahlua, hot coffee, sugar, double cream

Irish Coffee    irish whiskey, hot coffee, sugar, double cream

Café Coretto     grappa, hot coffee, sugar, double cream

Review

Staff– Friendly, knowledgable and efficient

Food– Delicious, skillfully prepared, innovative and just the right quantity

Atmosphere– The restaurant is trendy and relaxed. We arrived early when just a few tables were occupied but soon we were joined by many others and there was a feeling of mutual appreciation for the culinary delights.

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Top 10 Mauritius Luxury Villas of 2012

Reflecting on 2012 we have seen some interesting developments. Whilst there are still some firm favourites making the top 10 we have seen a large increase in family groups looking for a traditional yet trendy villa holiday. This year has been hugely successful for several of the villas on this trend in Mauritius. These spacious architect-designed pool villas with often 5+ bedrooms, offer a real home from home with their own local staff to take away those domestic chores.

2012 has also seen the opening of more luxury oceanfront apartments with very positive client feedback. Wedding parties blocking whole complexes were very popular this year, especially for those with guests from the southern and northern hemispheres meeting half way.

Mauritius continues to attract the villa client who can enjoy a tropical home from home, with homemade cooking, hot sandy beaches and the usual warm welcome of the Mauritius people.

Luxury Beach Apartments

 

Cape Point Apartments – Cap Malheureux (North Coast Mauritius)

 

Cape Point is a fantastic seafront property in North Mauritius just 5 minutes from Grand Bay. This year has seen a flurry of wedding groups with guests from all around the globe. Weddings can be held at Cape Point or at other romantic locations nearby. Cape Point has four spacious 3 bedroom apartments and a 4 bedroom penthouse offering a high level of comfort and stunning views over the lagoon and the northern islands. The swimming pool has a large wooden decking area and a pool bar.

 

Leora Beach Apartments – Tamarin, Black River (West Coast Mauritius) 

Leora opened late 2011 and was the first luxury apartments for rental on the west coast. An instant hit with our guests, it will soon be joined in April 2013 by another similar property L’Espanade. Leora Beachfront Apartments are in a stunning location with amazing sea views. There are 12 apartments and 2 penthouses of 3 bedrooms each set in four stylish blocks. Nearby are top-rated golf courses, sports clubs and commercial centres with shops and restaurants. The opening of such apartments are ideal for families, couples and groups of friends.

Traditional & Trendy Luxury Villas

 

Villa Athénée – Poste Lafayette (East Coast Mauritius)

As always, Villa Athénée is a firm favourite every year, this 5 bedroom beachfront thatched villa is traditonal yet stylish. A real home from home, the guests appreciate the ambiance of the villa, deck, pool and lovely soft sand of the beach as well as the delicious cooking provided by Marie-Josee. Excellent choice for a group of friends or large family.

Villa Hermes

 

Villas Hermes – Belle Mare (East Coast Mauritius)

One of our favourites and with fantastic staff, this villa brings family and golfing groups back year after year. Villas Hermes 2 with its 5 bedrooms can be rented along with Villa Hermes 1 with 4 bedrooms. A much sought-after villa which shares the finest beach of Belle Mare with the One&Only St Géran. All bedrooms are en-suite and air-conditioned. The outside covered terrace leads to a spacious lawn overlooking the powder beach and quiet bay. In our opinion you can’t beat both its location and its dedicated staff . A truly authentic Mauritius holiday experience.

La Boiserie – Trou Aux Biches/Mont Choisy (North Coast Mauritius)

On a gorgeous sandy beach, this well positioned  4-bedroom villa with a guest cottage sleeps up to 8 adults and 2 children. Days are spent sunbathing in the beautifully maintained front garden, laid out lawn and sand or dining under the covered wooden gazebo overlooking the stunning bay. Its location is great for sea sports enthusiasts with the  Blue Water Diving Centre and the Big Game Fishing Centre just 75 metres away. This villa has been very popular for large family groups with small children.

Villa K

 

Villa K – Pointe Aux Canonniers   (North Coast Mauritius)

This brand new exclusive villa lies on the beach overlooking the islands off the North coast. It is designed in tropical contemporary style and consists of 4 air-conditioned and ventilated en suite bedrooms sleeping up to 8 guests.

Villa Thalie

 

Villa Thalie – Domaine de Belle Riviere (South Coast Mauritius)

Located in the south west of Mauritius at Bel Ombre is Domaine de Belle Riviere, one of the most exclusive estates in Mauritius comprising some exclusive luxury private villas and the Sofitel So Mauritius five star luxurious hotel and spa. Villa Thalie has 7 bedrooms (4 suites and 3 doubles) and can sleep up to 18. Excellently managed and with complimentary access to the neighbouring Sofitel So Mauritius beach, kids club, restaurants and spa this has been a big hit with our discerning family groups. Ideal location for a very private and sophisticated wedding.

Villa d'Eden

 

Villa d’Eden – Poste Lafayette (East Coast Mauritius)

A traditional thatched and stone villa with pool and a very attentive housekeeper and cook. With 4 bedrooms Villa d’Eden offers a comfortable relaxing stay whether as a couple or with the family.

Tropical Cove

 

Tropical Cove (East Coast Mauritius)

A popular favourite this beautiful 4-bedroom villa is situated in a tropical garden overlooking the tranquil beach of Roches Noires, in a cove well protected from the wind. It is the ideal location for sports lovers who want to kite surf, use championship golf courses and jog along the coast. Ideal for families sleeping 6 adults and 2 children.

Lunea Villas

 

Lunea Villas – Anahita (East Coast Mauritius)

Ideal for golfing groups and family get togethers, Lunea Villas are nestled in the heart of a 213 acre estate of Anahita with views across to the famous Ile aux Cerfs. The estate also includes the Four Seasons Resort Mauritius and the 18 hole Championship golf course designed by Ernie Els.

Hope you’ve had a wonderful year in 2012, we know we have with the Olympics and Paralympics in the United Kingdom to be excited about amongst all the rest that is happening in Mauritius.

We look forward to welcoming you to some of these beautiful locations in 2013 which is already just round the corner!

Heritage In-villa Dining BBQ

One of the best experiences for everyone at Heritage was the In-Villa Dining BBQ. Chefs and waiters come to your villa and prepare the food. Whilst you start your dinner you can see the chef barbequing the meat infront of you; the smells are just as much part of the taste of the meal.

First crudités and salad with freshly prepared dressings decorated the table. First coming of the main course the beef steaks which melted in your mouth like butter. Then, accompanied by a special Barbeque sauce, came the Lamb Shanks which were equally tender and delicious. After this was the culinary pinacle and final main dish, the giant Indian Ocean Prawns were fluffy and generously flavoursome.

The dessert was a beautiful trio of Chocolate Mousse with Citrus Curd, Tiramisu and Tropical Fruit Kebab. Once we had had our coffees to finish, we met the chefs and applauded them enthusiastically as we had a fantastic meal.

Heritage Villas Stay

On arriving at Heritage Villas you are welcomed at the Chateau, where you are asked whether you want to have the formalities conducted inside the chateau or in the villa. We were led to our villa and given a complimentary cocktail and cold towel, shown around and were asked when and where we wanted dinner as we were with the Dining Around Package where you are expected to try the different restaurants on the resort.

Having stayed already at Heritage villas previously, our party were interested in the differences and similarities between the villas. The previous villa had been all on the ground floor but this villa had a stunning upstairs Master Bedroom with a view of the sea. Each villa has a different personality due to having different owners, so it’s very unique and intimate in comparison to a hotel experience.

Despite it being winter in Mauritius, some of our party tried out the pool and there was plenty of seating outside around the pool for others to join in whilst staying dry. The art and décor of the villa was tasteful in using delicate neutral colours, perfect for everyone.

From the villa we were able to explore all that Heritage had to offer at Awali, Le Tel Fair, C Beach Club and the Golf Club as the villa comes with a golf buggy which offers you that freedom.

http://www.villasdemaitre.com/hotelinfo.asp?SupplierID=1689 

Design background of St Regis Mauritius Resort Mauritius

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Opening on 15 Sept 2012 the first St Regis Resort in the Indian Ocean – The St Regis Mauritius Resort

The tradition of the St Regis brand and design will merge with the local heritage and regional aesthetics of Mauritius.

Stauch Vorster, an internationally renowned architect and  Trevor Julius interior designer of dsgn were inspired but the  romance of Mauritius colonial past and the location in the shadow of the World Heritage site of Le Morne Mountain on the Southwest tip of the island.

The architects and interior designers have recreated the grandeur, structure and ambience of a 19th century sugar baron’s manor house and historical estate. The legacy of colonial romance, refinement and education of this era matches  perfectly with the St. Regis’ history and vision of the art of living.

The design is the colonial style of grandeur and authenticity with rooms with airy high volumes, huge verandas and colonnades especially in the manor house. No impersonal reception but the feeling that the guests are arriving at a private residence.

Matching the St. Regis values of personalised experiences and discretion, the guest is greeted on arrival by a spectacular view along a colonnade and a personal welcome by a signature St Regis butler.

The remainder of the resort is designed around the manor house, where the restaurants, bars, ballroom and other facilities such as a library and conservatory can be found. Its tropical gardens house within the vast estate the spa, pool, additional restaurants, guest suites and a villa.

The architecture of the manor house and other buildings, such as the boathouse, have been conceived as altered originals, deliberately conjuring the passage of time. History has been preserved in the details, the furnishings have all been carefully collected and selected – no two pieces are the same. It mirrors the habits of the colonial owners who cherished and collected heirlooms associated with their Mauritius ancestors’ rich colonial past, taking in French, Eastern, British and Indian influences.

Delightful to see are the bespoke designs specifically created for particular rooms in the manor house. Toiles and wallpapers reference historical events and central moments in Mauritian history, or aspects of the regional flora, or even details from historical sketchbooks.

The St. Regis Mauritius will host six premier restaurants, each with its own definitive style drawn from a particular aspect of Mauritian heritage and all led by the Hotels’ highly acclaimed French Executive Chef Dominique Blais.

The bar is adorned with a signature mural, a St. Regis trademark. Wood, fabric, rattan and bamboo are the dominant materials used creating the warm atmosphere which takes one back in time.

The guest suites are generous in size and well positioned in order that guests can enjoy the proximity of the beach and spectacular ocean views. The suites flow easily from inside to outside.

The interiors reflect colonial romance with natural materials and a neutral tone-on-tone palette.

The overwhelming impression the resort design and feel is a home away from home, with a perfect romantic touch that perfectly embodies the St. Regis experience.

More details http://www.villasdemaitre.com/hotelinfo.asp?SupplierID=1799

Life is Magnifique – Sofitel So Mauritius Spa

During my recent stay at Sofitel So Mauritius I had the delight to visit and enjoy the spa acclaimed to be the best in the Indian Ocean. I simply had to try it for myself.

Lush vegetation, a turquoise lagoon, quietly flowing stream…Sofitel So Mauritius stands on the south coast of the island in one of nature’s most glorious settings.

I had a guided tour around the spa facilities and was seduced by the idea of a spa in luxuriant tropical vegetation; where they use ancient traditions from around the world mixed with the refinement and skill of the latest French cosmetology. I felt a window in my busy agenda was calling me to rid myself of the stresses and strains of daily life and I could awaken my senses. I modestly booked a long overdue facial and found myself in for 90 minutes of pure pampering. I must say at this point I did consider the Claret Coquet Method … An acupuncture natural lifting therapy with hundreds of gold needles but felt I would just go for the “nourish my body, nourish my soul”.

I loved the idea of the seasons, organic ingredients and the Chinese therapies; I was not disappointed.

The treatments were presented in a typically French manner as a gastronomic menu and I want to share them with you.

Specialite du chef 

Hisbiscus therapy. 90 mins

Body scrub & wrap, full massage

STARTERS 30 mins

Aromatic bath

Relaxing or energising with Bel Ombré aromas

Natural scrub

Rice powder, coconut, papaya, Hisbiscus powder

Natural wrap

Coconut milk, papaya, pineapple

Main dishes

Follow the season beauty biorhythm.

Interesting they call Mauritian Summer Season from Oct to March and Tropical Summer from April to September.

Personalised consultation based on Chinese Medicine

MAURITIAN SUMMER

drain, refresh, sooth with Green tomato and geranium essences

Choice of

Tonic one soothing Summer experiences

season’s body scrub followed by an energetic massage

Sensory Summer journey

gentle facial scrub,organic mask followed by a face massage

TROPICAL WINTER

Nourish the body, stimulate your cells with vanilla, pumpkin, borage essences

Choice of

Invigorating or relaxing Tropical Winter Experience Season’s Body Scrub followed by energetic massage

Tropical Escape

Gentle facial scrub and organic mask, followed by a face massage

I was recommended the latter and followed Premila to a very private treatment room with its very own changing room with shower, basin and toiler. No need for lockers and robes. The decor was bright and fresh, lots of white with a bit of wood and lots of daylight and tropical foliage. As I was lying down with my eyes closed most of the time, this is all I can recall. Premila examined in French every step of the treatment… From the various processes involved in the facial to the Chinese massage of my arms and the massage of my feet. During the 90 minutes I was fascinated and entranced by the whole process. I wondered how I would feel and look afterwards.

Continuing with the menus there are additional well-being main courses:

Indoors meets outdoors hand and with body scrub

Bel Ombre Aroma massage

Verviers, citrus fruit, sandalwood essential oils

herbal poultice massage with spices and flower seeds

Abhyanga massage ( Ayurvedic massage to sooth and balance the body)

Anti jet lag massage

Yoga Tai Chi Qi Gong

Sessions on the beach, in your private garden or in the yoga pavilion

Finally…. the Desserts

Head massage – Simply divine! you need it

Express Body massage – Well being secret for those who are always on the go

Tasty manicure and gourmandises

30 or 60 mins for perfect hands

Happy pedicure and tropical cocktails

30 or 60 mins For perfect feet

Foot reflexology

60 mins

SENSORY SPA JOURNEYS

4 days

Shh…total detox

Day 1 indoors meets outdoors hammam with body scrub, body wrap and body care day 2 Seasons beauty Mauritius summer or tropical winter experience face and body Day 3 Body massage, head massage happy pedicure day 4 Abhyanga massage and private yoga session

Hi! get Deep Energy

day 1 Shiatsu massage and reflexology

Day 2 Natural scrub and herbal poultice massage Day 3 Seasons Beauty MAuritius Summer or tropical winter experience face and body day 4 enviro rating walk by the beach & yoga session & scalp massage

Ahhh….Be relaxed

day 1 Private Qi Quong session and outdoor feet reflexology
Day 2 aromatic bath & Abhyanga massage & scalp massage Day 3 Seasons beauty day 4 Tasty manicure and happy pedicure

WOW… Anti ageing

Day 1 Hisciscus therapy full body scub wrap and massage
Day 2 body massage with be, ombré aromas and reflexology
Day 3 season beauty aroma massage and season beauty facial
Day 4 Natiral lifting acupuncture session “the golden needles of Celine” and tasty manicure

HUMM… Just the two of us

day 1 )hammam with body scrub and anti stress massage
Day 2 aromatic bath and aromatic massage and head massage

Restaurant Gin’ja, Heritage Le Telfair Mauritius (Restaurant review)

Whilst staying recently at Heritage Villas, we paid a visit to Heritage Le Telfair Mauritius where we had dinner at the famous restaurant Gin’ja. The restaurant which serves innovative Pan-Asian fusion cuisine gave us an elegant fine dining experience with a range of exotic flavours and creative combinations.

We were welcomed enthusiastically and shown our table near the teppanyaki corner. We were left constantly pleasantly surprised as we were not choosing from the menu but given a selection of their best dishes which I have listed below in the menu.

Every dish brought us excitement which only increased as we tasted our way through the surprise menu. There were touches of genius all evening such as the delicious steamed buns before and during our meal with exotic dips, as well as the innovative vanilla tempura icecream which melted in our mouths.

We loved how you could also watch the chef prepare the dishes through a glass window near our table; it let us join in with the creation of the food as well as the tasting. You effectively sit outside looking out onto the water under a roof with dimmed lights which really adds to the atmosphere of the restaurant.

We cannot wait to return and taste more of their impressive inspired cusine!

Review

Staff– Friendly, knowledgable and efficient

Food– Delicious, skillfully prepared, innovative and just the right quantity

Atmosphere– The restaurant is trendy and relaxed. We arrived early when just a few tables were occupied but soon we were joined by many others and there was a feeling of mutual appreciation for the culinary delights.

– Menu –

Starter

Gin’ja delicate platter
Assorted sushi maki, Peking duck with tangy hoisin sauce, jumbo tiger prawn tempura

Main course

Duo platter delicious teryaki beef tenderloin, miso glazed ombrine fish with sauteed baby bok choy and green tea sweet potato

Dessert

Vanilla tempura ice cream with warm cardamon chocolate sauce


http://www.villasdemaitre.com/hotelinfo.asp?SupplierID=1689

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