A trip to Mauritius always seemed a bit too far coming from the U.S. — especially traveling with a child. Of course seeing photos of this island made me sigh … and sigh again … but it was just too much travel time PLUS the jet lag factor. Fast forward. Now that we live in Paris and — get this — the time difference is only two hours, we said a big “yes!” to spending my daughter’s spring break there. Yes, the flight is long. Just hovering around 11 hours going and almost 12 back. (Hello entire season of “Greenleaf” on Netflix! Fabulous!) That said, when you GET THERE, you’re not thinking about anything else except those lush green mountains and that stunning ocean water in every shade of blue.
We looked at several properties before going. There are many, many seriously beautiful hotels here. We ultimately chose Shangri-La because of its unique location (it sits on its own curving peninsula, which creates a beautiful little inlet that is perfect for paddle boarding and kayaking) and their Kid’s Club. Remember people: when your child is happy, you have an actual vacation, not just a change of scenery. Stella had a blast.
The property (a former One&Only) is a series of modern white-washed low buildings mixed with stunning palms, aloe vera plants, and insane amounts of other exotic greenery that just make you feel at peace with the world. So lush. We stayed in the all-suites Frangipani section and our room was a medium-sized suite with massive bathroom and nice outdoor terrace… on the beach. (Lots of therapeutic ocean-gazing. Lots.)
I’m a breakfast person and to start every morning at the resort’s Le Bazar restaurant was my personal vision of heaven. Everything was fresh, beautifully (and thoughtfully) laid out and I always love a mix of both western and asian breakfast options. (My daughter was probably the first in line to get her morning dumplings!) Dinners were great there as well. Kushi is the Japanese restaurant and we LOVED it. Word of advice: while Le Bazar doesn’t take reservations, Kushi and Le Safran (amazing Indian cuisine) definitely do and they book quickly. The cuisine reflects the beautiful ethnic mix on this island.
Activities are definitely there for the curious and motivated. Our family did lots of paddle boarding and kayaking. The gym is beautiful and the spa (Chi) should not be missed. Great Ayurvedic options and lovely staff. Mauritius is known for having one of the largest statues of the Buddha in the world. Located in the southern region of the island, it’s pretty magnificent. There are tea plantation tours, and incredible sea turtles. If water sports are your thing (especially kite-surfing) … you’ve struck gold. Of course, you can also just lay on that gorgeous sand and just gaze…