Mauritius isn’t a typical tropical island. It owes its multiculturalism to its rich history, which witnessed waves of Africans, Asians, Europeans, and people all over the world make their unique mark in the country.
If you want to learn about Mauritius’ history, a good starting point is the country’s role as a refuge for Africans previously enslaved by Europeans that hunted for sugar and spices. This helped play a part in Mauritius being hailed as "the most cosmopolitan island in the sun," which is now home to an industrialized nation.
Mauritius is just slightly distant from the African continent, which enables visitors to have a 360-degree access to the wild and blue Indian Ocean. But the body of water is not the nation’s only asset, the island is a pure tropical paradise filled with rocky mountains, gushing waterfalls, and dense rainforests.
It is also lined with dazzling, white beaches and dotted with deep, blue lagoons. The climate is almost perfect for the whole year, good for lounging around tropical-themed hotels, playing water and land sports, and just general sightseeing.
The nation is home to the UNESCO Heritage Site Le Morne, a significant symbol of historical resistance against slavery. The mountain is now also considered as a spiritual mecca for those looking to cleanse and renew their being. It opened its pathways to the public in July 2016.
Mauritius is also home to surreal tourist spots, like the One Eye Surfing Spot, Casela Nature Park, Black River Gorges National Park, Seven Coloured Earth in Chamarel, and other distinctive Mauritian wonders.
ST. REGIS MAURITIUS
At the foot of Le Morne sits St. Regis Mauritius, one of the nation’s most popular hotels. St. Regis Mauritius is a resort filled with accommodations of seven suite types and one villa type with their signature personal butler service. All rooms give you a wide view of the ocean and immediate access to the hotel’s facilities.
The whole property is also larger than expected.
ST. REGIS BUTLER SERVICE
St. Regis Mauritius’ butler service is one of its most unique features, running for over 100 years now. The signature service offers beverage services, unpacking and packing services, and garment pressing. It’s pretty convenient as the butler can arrange and deliver your tea and coffee and organize your garments once you alight the hotel.
St. Regis also seems to have caught up to the advent of hotel technology, as the eButler that you can reach by-email is now available.
St. Regis houses five restaurants that all vary in offerings.
1. Le Manor Dining Room
If you’re looking for food that reflects the taste of the island, this is the place to dine in. Be prepared to experience exotic Creole flavours mixed with classic French cuisine. What’s better is that the dishes are interpreted with a modern touch, so there are dishes that could offer you new sensations you haven’t tried before.
2. The 1904 Bar
St. Regis is pretty serious about living up to its nation’s history, which is evident in its architecture and cuisine. The 1904 Bar is a good example of this. It is built on a colonial-themed Manor House, accompanied by a wine cellar, which the hotel said, “is a subtle testimony of the great taste of the landlord.”
The bar offers one of St. Regis’ contributions to the history of drinks, the Bloody Mary, which was created 75 years ago at the St. Regis New York, along with Mauritius’ own interpretation, La Belle Creole Mary.
At night, the bar has live entertainment which sets the atmosphere for mingling in a tropical social hub.
3. The Boathouse Bar & Grill
It is divided into sections, the bar and the grill, as its name implies. The bar offers fresh juices and light food, which is made memorable by the accompanying views (visit in the afternoon and enjoy the Mauritian sunset).
The grill has more gourmet options. Imagine eating a platter of fresh oysters and grilled prawns with a glass of champagne right next to the sea, you can pretty much get that from here.
4. Floating Market
If you’re craving for Southeast Asian Food, head into the Floating Market. Although the restaurant might not literally look like the popular floating markets in some Southeast Asian countries, its combination of Thai, Malay, and Vietnamese dishes are as evocative, aromatic, and exciting.
If you’re looking for food further up Southeast Asia, St. Regis has Far Eastern-inspired Atsuko restaurant for you. Its Vietnamese chef has a line of modern and uniquely interpreted Japanese dishes, ranging from the teriyaki, sashimi, robatayaki, and yakitori. Don’t miss out on the seafood, meat, and vegetables.
According to St. Regis’ website, the restaurant’s name “Atsuko” is synonymous with feelings of calm, serenity and warmth.
You can’t miss out on the Iridium Spa. The spa hosts facilities like two couple treatment rooms, salon for men and women, a retail stop, a consultation room, a jacuzzi, a relaxation terrace, an in-room spa services. It also uses Valmont's extraordinary line of Swiss skin care products which boast advanced cellular technology combined with glacial spring water and pure plant extracts. Those are just a few of its many offerings.
Resort Location: 10/10
No other resort can top St. Regis Mauritius’ location at the foot of the UNESCO world heritage site, Le Morne Brabant and right in front of the Indian Ocean. It is close to most visitors attractions including Casela Nature Park, Black River Gorges National Park, Seven Coloured Earth in Chamarel. Moreover, we were treated to the best tropical views any person could imagine wherever we turn our heads.
Historical Value: 10/10
Being in Mauritius feels like experiencing a precious, one-of-a-kind moment. We were able to appreciate its multicultural roots and history of freedom even if we were on a leisure trip. While the colonial buildings in St. Regis Mauritius, which are hard to find in other places, gave us a glimpse on how it was like to live in the Victorian era. It felt like we were stuck in one moment in history.
Aesthetic Design: 9/10
St. Regis embraces Mauritius’ history well. The resort’s Victorian colonial theme has a nice mix of traditional, contemporary, and native design that imbues a feeling of serenity and calmness.
However, in our honest opinion, some of the facilities look a bit outdated. Perhaps, some enhancement and renovation will help.
Junior Suite No.211: 9/10
The suite, although lacking the anticipated luxurious charm and character, is spacious, comfortable and has a relaxed ambiance. It has beautiful views of the garden and the Indian Ocean, and with Le Morne as a breathtaking backdrop. It is also located next to the resort's main facilities.
Food and Beverage: 9/10
We’re going to be more vocal about our food and beverage experience here. We love our Chef’s Table experience. It definitely has a happiness score of 10/10, because of its bold and unique concept. We were astonished to watch and feel the full action in the kitchen, and we appreciate the team's dedication to create beautiful and delicious masterpieces for their guests. It’s something that you should try if you decide to stay in St. Regis Mauritius. We also enjoyed our snacks at The Boathouse Bar & Grill and our Asian dinner at The Floating Market. Breakfast at Le Manor was okay too, but we think their dinner buffet could use some improvement.
It’s worth noting that all the restaurants in the resort require reservation prior to dining even if you are an in-house guest. However, it is not stated in the website and in our case, nobody informed us about it during our booking.
Customer Service: 9.5/10
Most of the staff were truly great. They made us feel at home with their relaxed and friendly service. You can’t go wrong with staff that are always willing to help you with a smile.
Leisure Facilities: 10/10
We are quite happy with the resort's leisure facilities. Our favourite is their water sports facilities which are world-class in every aspect. The hotel offers various activities like kitesurfing, windsurfing, stand up paddling, scuba diving, water skiing, snorkelling, kayaking, glass bottom boat trip, catamaran cruise, big game fishing and more. We tried out some of these and we thoroughly enjoyed them.
Iridium Spa: 10/10
We had a couple’s massage in Iridium Spa’s private suite which includes the use of the jacuzzi hot tub, sauna and wet steam room. A special product from the Valmont skincare was used for our face massage and a unique blend of essential oil was used for our body massage. We also tried the resort’s new offering, the Morning Bliss, a 90-minute massage for two, and followed by a romantic breakfast at the beach. It was a lovely and memorable experience. We highly recommend it!
The resort, just like any other resorts in the island, is sandwiched by public beaches but the Security Team ensures that the property remains exclusive to their guests and maintains their presence in all the areas of the resort.
Client Profile: 9.5/10
During our stay, most of the guests were honeymooners, middle-aged couples and retirees from France, UK, Germany, America, China, Korea and Japan.
We stayed in St. Regis Mauritius for 8 days and 7 nights, and overall, it was a memorable and unique experience. We were treated to pure, tropical views and salty ocean breeze everywhere, which helped lift our spirits. We also enjoyed how the kitchen showed us their process of making their soulful food. The spa’s services were superb, and we had more fun together as they have facilities that are catered to couples like us. Moreover, Mauritius’ historical roots added depth and cultural appreciation to our experience. We recommend staying in St. Regis Mauritius once you visit the country. The hotel is representative of Mauritian hospitality, which is warm and caring.