Mauritius gets a retro-chic tropical retreat and wellness centre like no other
Creative duo KELLY HOPPEN MBE and Mauritian architect JEAN-FRANCOIS ADAM have reinvented this fresh-spirited luxury resort and spa. In doing so they have introduced an innovative approach to style and hospitality to Mauritius. Re-opening at the end of the year on the African island’s northern coast, edging the private bay are two beaches, tropical gardens, brand new forward-thinking restaurants and sociable bars, 186 bedrooms and suites, a luxe-for-less boutique, and an indoor cinema for movie screenings and sporting events. Thanks to thoughtful touches and residential-feel interiors from the award-winning design studio and leading architect, the easy, breezy spirit of multicultural Mauritius will be inspiring in an entirely new way.
Exclusive launch rates available for this five-star LUX* resort for bookings made by 30 November 2017
Heaven was modelled on Mauritius — at least, according to the writer Mark Twain — and the lush greenery and gently lapping shallow lagoon waters of Grand Gaube would have you believing this. The sheltered north-facing resort has been cleverly remodelled to greet arriving guests with a staggering, uninterrupted view of the Indian Ocean as well as the offshore islands. No stone of the former building has been left unturned as part of the US$32 million renovations, while the natural setting has been preserved — wild flowers still scent the lovingly tended gardens and the postcard-perfect scenes are sound-tracked by layers of birdsong.
Reborn with a fresh, flirty, smile-inspiring personality
The British designer has dressed the resort in timeless understated glamour. Channelling fond memories of favourite holidays in Cape Town, Capri, Mallorca and Antigua, and having fallen for the energy of Grand Gaube itself, Kelly Hoppen has created a feel-good factor that no other Indian Ocean destination has known. By gently layering every look with tactile ceramics, hand-picked accessories, vintage rattan and residential quality soft furnishings, Kelly Hoppen’s designs breathe uplifting style and soul into every space, while inviting nature inside, wherever possible.
Artist flair is also on the agenda at LUX* Grand Gaube. French street-artist Jace will be sharing his famous Gouzou illustration around the resort prompting the chance to play ‘Gouzou Spotting’; London-based French artist Camille Walala is painting original murals — her much-Instagrammed brightly-coloured designs grace walls from Melbourne to Manhattan, and now Mauritius.
Jean-Francois Adam’s ambition for LUX* Grand Gaube has been to design comfortable tropical living through contemporary spaces. The architect’s method is to think and rethink projects to ensure that volumes are generous, lines are precise and style is unpretentious. Convinced that architecture has a heart and a soul, he unites artistic talent with rational mind to bring life to his designs. For him, it all starts with a sound understanding of the site’s characteristics and constraints to identify what constitutes its spirit.
ROMANTIC BEDROOMS AND SUITES
Step from every sea-view bedroom onto peaceful terraces, some with outdoor baths or sundecks edged by soft, soft sand. All eight room categories are fitted with LUX* Sleeptight mattresses, silky soft linens and pillows, robes and slippers— all designed for extreme comfort and the best night’s sleep you’ll ever have. Huge doors treat the living spaces to lots of natural light and generous wardrobe and dressing space enhances the loft-style feel. Spindrift-white bedrooms are enhanced with details like hand-painted navy-blue lines and unexpected home-from-home touches, such as succulents in ceramic pots. Handwoven African baskets, wicker tables and smooth floors ensure all bedrooms are as comfortable as can be. Geometric encaustic tiles add graphic-design personality to ensuites, and many bathrooms have reclaimed bespoke Victorian bathtubs. The top-level accommodation is the signature two-bedroom LUX* Villa, which sleeps a family of four in a beautiful blend of original, modern styling and classic retro chic.
WELL-GROOMED GROUNDS IN A DISTINCTLY AFRICAN SETTING
Framed by fruit trees and filao pine trees, the sweeping driveway to the hotel traces the north-east coastline — to the east you can see the local fishermen’s boats coming in with their fresh daily catch. Chelsea Flower Show winner Stephen Woodhams has designed LUX* Grand Gaube’s meticulous gardens. Alive with yellow, orange and pink bougainvillea, the many tree species include the eccentrically shaped evergreen araucaria, which are mini monkey-puzzle pines and impressive grand banyans with dangling lianas that come alive with the sound of many birds that find their nesting place within. Walk towards the jetty, past pretty yellow tecoma flowers and see wind-swept wild grasses sprouting up between the dramatic black volcanic rocks. Poudre d’Or is the name of a village in Mauritius, and translates from French as ‘powdered gold’ and this is how best to describe the soft sand of the beach at LUX* Grand Gaube.
REMARKABLE RESTAURANTS AND BARS
As always, there’s a Café LUX* at the heart of the resort, and here it’s in lieu of a lobby. Coffee connoisseurs are invited to follow the aroma of LUX* ethically-sourced, freshly ground LUX* exclusive Island-blend coffee from Belle Mare, where our house-roasted beans are masterfully made into specialist brews. Our baristas keep up with all the latest trends and techniques including cold press, pour-overs and nitro coffees.
Atmospheric and entertaining eatery space Palm Court is the frond-filled masterpiece of this intimate, restyled boutique resort. Here, everyone has that perfect table overlooking the ocean, and no two meals feel the same. An indoor-outdoor restaurant where every seat feels alfresco, and cosy banquettes, or even the option of sitting and dining at the kitchen counter and watch the chef in action. Be it breakfast or dinner, pick from sizzling special kitchens, and pile your plate with freshly steamed dim sum or Mediterranean tapas — flamboyant serving stations satisfy the wildest cravings. The interactive open kitchen at the centre doesn’t make guests choose between favourite comfort-food classics or theatrical teppanyaki creations – it’s all there for the taking in one sitting. Stick to healthy eating intentions with ease and enthusiasm thanks to an award-winning team of chefs carefully sourcing the best nourishing ingredients — help-yourself salads, just-made sushi, house-made kombucha elixirs and gourmet smoked fish and cured meats await. Take your senses to Asia for zingy curries, and tandoor-baked naan breads and Sichuan or Cantonese stir fries made right there. There’s home-style Italian cooking too, including wood-fired pizzas, salt-crusted fish, crispy suckling pig and a rotisserie showcasing the juiciest cuts. Small groups can make suppers an extra special occasion by booking the Tastevin where the expert sommelier will delight all with the wisdom behind the wines. With the largest selection of Prosecco and Cider in the country, and with craft, local and imported beers on tap, the Palm Court Bar promises to be a place which has everyone feeling exactly how they hope to on holiday.
Follow a sandy path to the gigantic sprawling banyan tree. Enveloped by nature, an authentic Creole Smokehouse tempts with cured fish and meat; either cooked on charcoal or from an amazing smoker from the USA, while a shaded wooden shack “BB’s” perfects the art of the burger. Added to this irresistible island-feel experience is this mesmerising Rum Treehouse with a selection of no more than 88 varieties of rums celebrating the flavours of the sugar island. Order inventive rum cocktails blended to perfection by tugging on the cabana-style rope which leads to a bartender waiting below. Quench thirst at the quirky Citroën H van-converted-pop-up bar, nicknamed French Kiss. It’s a first you’ll always remember.
Bodrum Blue is the authentic Turkish restaurant on its own micro peninsula, with Levantine mezzes and succulent kebabs and flat breads. The selection and variety of dishes are inspired from Bodrum’s coastline and the vibrant capital. The authentic feel and flavours of this restaurant are thanks to having a Turkish chef and ingredients brought in from Istanbul weekly. There’s a lounge overlooking the lagoon with the best sunset view and a shisha corner. Five Turkish wines have joined our Scrucap collection and they are only available at Bodrum Blue.
Peruvian-Argentinian delicacies await at INTI — meaning the god of sun — the country’s first Peruvian-Argentinian restaurant which promises Latin American passion along with refined Nikkei flair and a seriously exciting bar. The Ceviche and Pisco Bar has a live DJ every night, and an Argentinian chef beings the spirit of South America to these shores. The first Peruvian-Argentinian eatery in the Indian Ocean, the ingredients have been brought in especially for INTI. The outdoor garden overlooks the beach and lagoon — the perfect spot for an aperitivo or an after-dinner chill. Cuisine is influenced by Peru, Argentina, Japan, Equador and Mexico.
Bury sun-kissed feet in the sand at Beach Rouge as you pause for a relaxed lunch or a romantic dinner at the water’s edge. The menu shows off seafood to sirloin cooked in the Josper oven, while pizzas rival Italy’s finest thanks to the secret-recipe specially set-aside dough. On a sunny day, stroll here from the sea or the swimming pool, settle into a table under the shade for a long, lazy lunch or brunch with chilled drinks in a convivial atmosphere. Sunset is a spectacle as the pastel colours of the Mauritian sky beg to be toasted with mixologist-made concoctions while a DJ fine-tunes the soundscape. As dinnertime rolls into after-hours, the tempo takes it up a notch, and the dynamic beach club reveals its party-loving side.
Wine experiences aplenty await at LUX* Grand Gaube. The spirit of discovery is assured from the impressive selection available to try before you buy — guests don’t need to order a whole bottle of wine thanks to the Enomatic® wine dispenser system. Have a taste, match your mood to exactly the right grape and make an informed choice on what you fill your glass with.
“It’s with huge enthusiasm and passion that we’ve created an entirely new resort at LUX* Grand Gaube unlike anything else on the island. Set in sprawling tropical gardens created by award-winning landscape designer, Stephen Woodhams, we’re thrilled to unveil a fresh new perspective on Mauritius. Kelly Hoppen’s vision of eclectic retro-chic is effortlessly sophisticated and blissfully informal. Two beaches, a calm lagoon and the Indian Ocean never more than a few steps away — the resort encourages exploration and the discovery of swaying hammocks and secluded shady spots for time alone or together. Luxury today should mean a sense of freedom and personal space; our reimagined resort has innovation at its core, along with five new surprise Reasons to Go LUX* that awaits our guests upon opening of the resort. More important are the 500 team members who are eager to share the best of themselves to ensure that they help all our guests celebrate life.” — Brice Lunot, General Manager, LUX* Grand Gaube.
A NEW WORLD OF WELLNESS & FITNESS
Connecting guests with nature, this spacious new-generation LUX* Me spa tunes visitors into the paradisiac setting while bespoke therapies and specially tailored treatments work their magic. Anti-ageing, fitness and weight-loss are among the benefits, whether guests are seeking a total reboot or just a little time relaxing. This spa extraordinaire is a deep breath of fresh air — especially for those who book one of the African style huts.
To complement the Shirley Page LUX* Me Spa experience, LUX* Grand Gaube has selected Carita for its outstanding combination of sensory and technical excellence to revamp or regenerate the skin. There will also be a Kérastase flagship hairdressing salon providing their signature rituals as well as manicures and pedicures from Essie for the most outstanding posh nails experience. Gentlemen will be in the best nick too thanks to the Murdock barber shop with a London barber to boot.
Soothe away stresses in the hydrotherapy pool, unwind in an aromatic steam room and sauna and make the most of time in the new wellbeing space by simply taking time out on a canopied daybed. There’s also a state-of-the-art ARTIS® Technogym fitness centre, open-air Callisthenic workout programmes as well as cardio boot camp circuits, meditation and yoga, as well as a tennis academy, Padel Tennis, bikes to borrow, and nutritional advice from Burwing, the resort’s Wellness Concierge.
Life coach Kamran Bedi of the Mind Body Method has partnered with the resort bringing certified expertise as an NLP master practitioner (neurolinguistic programming), hypnotherapist, meditation teacher and Pilates instructor, his specialised programme offers the complete mind and body experience through guided meditations and stretch-based classes to assist the body in releasing tension, barre-style workouts and a new Pilates practice, Movement On The Roller, designed to work the whole body, centered around balance and being mindful so you can detach from day-to-day life.
Don’t let the rows of pretty bottles suggest this is just a place of pampering – the signature blends of natural plant oils and flower essences ease tension, soothe mind and body, and give a wellbeing boost. Then take home some of that LUX* Me aromatherapy.
THE GOLF EXPERIENCE
LUX* Grand Gaube offers a spectacular sea facing driving range, a putting green and a fully equipped Pro Shop. Consulting and perfecting your golfing skills is taught by the resort Golf Coach, Vickam, who is as knowledgeable as he is friendly. The resort has partnered with Mauritius latest edition golf course, the Mont Choisy 18-hole world-class golf course designed by Peter Matkovich for exclusive packages; only 15 minutes from LUX* Grand Gaube.
Shopping has never been so fun. A non-typical curated retail experience: expect quirky gadgets, unique Mauritian souvenirs, through to collaborations with international designers, plus there’s a retail-therapy bar, to a make-your-own-jewellery station. This stylish space includes a hand-picked collection of swimwear and resort wear and the latest sought-after pieces from designers such as Melissa Odabash, Orlebar Brown, Julien Fournié and unique pieces from Indian Cotton, to name a few. Little ones are also be spoilt for choice with the new Baby LUX* collection. Even those not in a buying mood will find it’s a beautiful space to browse.
Look north, towards Coin de Mire, and make out the silhouette of five uninhabited islands where the diving and snorkelling promises a spectacular experience and the marine life is extraordinary. Drive from the north-east’s sweeping white sandy coastline to the untamed Unesco-protected parkland of the south and pass scenes of brightly painted temples, botanical gardens and colonial mansions punctuated by arrowing sugarcane fields. Dramatic rock formations make up the volcanic mountainscape of this African island where the geography is fascinating. Little wonder pirates once plundered those that prospered from the fertile lands of L’île Maurice (as it’s known in French) and today this island’s population is a bouillabaisse of friendly Indian, Creole, Chinese and French people.
“Working together with a team of world class professionals, we have been inspired to create a unique destination for those who seek simplicity and kindness. Surrender yourself to the warmth and passion of all our team members—their sole purpose is to help you celebrate life! A genuine respite from the world around us. Be warned — you will never want to leave.” shares Paul Jones, CEO, LUX* Resorts & Hotels.
NOTES TO EDITORS:
Exceptional experiences in different locales — on the beach, in the city, or in nature – since LUX* banishes thoughtless patterns and is more simple, fresh and sensory than its competitors.
SPECIAL LAUNCH OFFER Bookings made before the end of November 2017, get an additional 15% discount on the Long Stay Offer online.
Brice Lunot has been General Manager of LUX* Grand Gaube since 2008. Originally from France, his time at Le Méridien in Tahiti and Bora Bora proved that island life comes naturally, and since joining LUX* in 2007, he’s stayed loyal to this very special resort.
Reasons to Go LUX*
Whoever said life is about the journey, not the destination, can’t have been lucky enough to enjoy a LUX* holiday. Because between the special places to spend time in LUX* and all the team members who love making your stay special, LUX* Grand Gaube is very much about enjoying every moment while you’re with us, so you go home smiling. Surprises await around every corner – the kind of considered touches we always dream of from a holiday. Seek out the photography studio or find an art class, keep a keen eye open for a message on the bottle as these treat guests to gifts every day, or experience a cookery lesson culminating in a delicious lunch of all that you’ve learned. Holiday-enhancing experiences and added extras are assured at every turn.
Resorts and hotels in the LUX* portfolio:
LUX* Belle Mare, Mauritius; LUX* Le Morne, Mauritius; LUX* South Ari Atoll, Maldives; LUX* Saint Gilles, Reunion Island; LUX* Bodrum, Turkey; LUX* Tea Horse Road Lijiang, Yunnan, China; LUX* Tea Horse Road, Benzilan, China; Coming soon: LUX* Sud Sauvage, Reunion Island; LUX* North Malé, Maldives, LUX* Al Zorah, UAE, LUX* Tuscany, Italy, LUX* Dianshan Lake, Suzhou, China, LUX* Luxes Lakes, Chengdu, China, and LUX* Phu Quoc, Vietnam.
Our Tread Lightly programme includes our award-winning Earth & Dance water bottled in-house using refillable glass and we’ve upgraded to LED lighting across all our resorts. Café LUX* uses ethically sourced coffee and our Mamma Aroma amenities are as kind to the earth as they are to your skin. To make the world better for everyone, we invite guests to get involved. A €1 per night voluntary donation allows guests to offset 100% of the carbon produced during their stay. Projects funded by this contribution include the Sarako Solar Farm in Mauritius, which supplies 35,000 people with green electricity. Contemporary glass balconies have replaced the wooden balustrades, while age-old skills were preserved through specialist local craftsmen who looked after the traditional dry-stone walls and roofs thatched with dried sugarcane leaves.
LUX* Resorts & Hotels is a member of Lux Island Resorts Co Ltd, which is listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius and is an affiliate member of IBL, leader of the Top 100 Mauritian companies. IBL is active in key sectors of the Mauritian economy, representing a portfolio of approximately 300 subsidiaries and associated companies.