Boutique Heaven in Mauritius

Suzanne Barney on 11 June 2019
This is my third trip to Mauritius. I normally travel to the island in their ‘summer' months which is our winter. This starts in May to August and as a travel agent I wanted to see for myself what the weather would be like.

The humidity in Mauritius is very low so it isn’t sticky like other tropical places. Plus, it needs the rain to keep its lush beautiful sub-tropical gardens. So, I knew the weather may not be perfect and was prepared to take the low season gamble.

My first hotel was Shanti Maurice - I had won this three-night stay from the tourist board and I will be honest it wouldn't have been a hotel I would normally choose. It was B&B, boutique and had an award-winning spa and leaned towards being 'holistic'. This hotel really won me over - I loved it. Shanti means peaceful in Mauritian and the Shanti Maurice to me was heavenly. It is located on the south coast of Mauritius, about 90 minutes from the airport. We arrived just before sunset - like a lot of Mauritian hotels there is a long driveway and then a stunning entrance where you can see through the bar, to the pool to the sea. It is a boutique hotel with 61 suites and villas in 36 acres of tropical gardens with a wonderful spa. There must have been 100 people staying at the hotel, but we very rarely saw them. it was like having the hotel to ourselves.

The staff were very welcoming with cold drinks and towels informing me they had upgraded my room to beachfront located next to the jetty. The windows were full sized opening on to a large balcony and I was overlooking the beach with an uninterrupted view. There were gifts in our room of a hat, beach bag and also stainless-steel water containers so not to use plastic.

We hadn't slept much on the plane however we didn't feel tired as there is only a 3 hour time difference so no jet lag. Then the sky was full of 'stars' which was pretty impressive. Clear skies and lovely sunny weather around 26degrees means perfect temperatures.

I felt this was a hotel all to ourselves. There were plenty of padded comfy sunbeds dotted around with so much space, so you were not on top of each other. We upgraded to all inclusive 'Shanti bliss' whilst we were here which was €145 per day and gave us lunch/dinner and selected drinks (we stuck to south African wine). The food was very high quality and was mostly a la carte. We could eat when we wanted, and the table was ours for the evening. The main restaurant ‘Stars' next to the beach was just so lovely it was hard to pull yourself away. We also ate at the shabby chic Rum shack which had a lovely ambience set away from the hotel. In the day we had stunning views of the ocean and in the evening the stars took over.

The spa is one of the highlights of the hotel it is award winning (and was very reasonable). We treated ourselves to a couple of massages plus, if you wanted, there were one to one yoga sessions on the menu! I truly wish I had had more time at this hotel to have more.

We had a photo shoot included from a professional photographer in the grounds of the hotel for an hour. This was great fun as we could choose where we took the photos. Even my camera-shy husband enjoyed it. We got some great shots around the pool, gardens and the volcanic black rocks at the far side of the resort with the waves crashing down. We could choose our favourite photo and have this as a gift from the hotel, but we ended up buying the whole lot as they had done such an amazing job.

We were only here for 3 nights so we tried to fit in as much as possible. We played tennis, had fun on the putting green and even found time to sunbathe. We didn't do any of the water sports available. I didn't want to leave, and I actually felt quite sad when we had to move on. It really exceeded my expectations. I came away feeling rejuvenated and remembering why I loved Mauritius so much.

In the short time there we built up a bond with the staff who were really friendly especially in the Rum Shack and the chocolate fondant pudding with butterscotch ice cream was amazing and far surpassed the QE2 which set the benchmark for me in the Stars restaurant. Ironic the hotel restaurant is called stars as this is something that will stay in my mind looking up at all those constellations which was truly amazing.