Sea­side chic

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - TRAVEL & INDULGENCE - CHRIS­TINE McCABE

Mau­ri­tius’s fa­mous Le Touess­rok, long pa­tro­n­ised by the rich and fab­u­lous, re­opens on Novem­ber 1 fol­low­ing a six-month top-to-toe ren­o­va­tion un­der the Shangri-La Ho­tels and Re­sorts ban­ner.

Lo­cated on the east coast at one of the is­land’s most beau­ti­ful bays, the re­sort was born in mod­est cir­cum­stances in the early 1970s when Jac­que­line Dalais took over her fam­ily’s small restau­rant, added some gue­strooms and be­gan host­ing par­ties so won­der­ful that the word soon spread.

Since then the re­sort has evolved, at­tract­ing movie stars, rock roy­alty and ac­tual roy­alty smit­ten by its post­card-per­fect lo­cale and laid-back chic.

The $US30 mil­lion ($41m) up­grade riffs on this bare­foot glam­our with a clean new look, us­ing nat­u­ral ma­te­ri­als and a muted coastal pal­ette in all 200 ocean-view gue­strooms and suites (plus three vil­las), to­gether with new res­tau­rants and a sig­na­ture Shangri-La Chi day spa.

Along with sugar-sand beaches and dreamy views, Shangri-La’s Le Touess­rok Re­sort & Spa also com­mands ex­clu­sive ac­cess to a pri­vate is­land with a beach club and team of but­lers. Gue­strooms are spa­cious, start­ing at 54 sq m; all ac­com­mo­da­tion has ex­pan­sive ocean views and some cat­e­gories come with a ter­race with di­rect beach ac­cess.

Ex­pect king bed, lux­ury bath­room with deep soak­ing tub, cable tele­vi­sion and free Wi-Fi.

That trio of se­cluded premium beach vil­las of­fer pri­vate pools, gar­dens, but­lers, limou­sine air­port trans­fers and plenty of five-star ex­tras, from per­son­ally mono­grammed bathrobes to an elec­tric car to get you about the es­tate.

Le Touess­rok has al­ways been fam­ily friendly and un­der the Shangri-La brand will fea­ture a club for chil­dren aged four to 11 (open 9am to 10pm daily), as well as a teens’ club, and free meals for ju­niors un­der 12 in the all-day din­ing ar­eas and pool cafes.

DON’T MISS: A round of golf on the 18-hole cham­pi­onship course de­signed by Bern­hard Langer and lo­cated on a nearby is­land.

DIN­ING IN AND OUT: The re­fur­bish­ment has re­tained sev­eral favourites in­clud­ing the In­dian restau­rant Safran.

New eater­ies in­clude the beach­side Republik Beach Club & Grill and Kushi for Ja­panese fare. At Republik, ex­ec­u­tive chef Steven Grande sug­gests foie gras par­fait or salt-crusted fish stuffed with herbs and cit­rus. Af­ter din­ner en­joy live jazz or blues at Sega, the re­sort’s rum and tiki bar.

ASK THE CONCIERGE: Tea was orig­i­nally planted in Mau­ri­tius in 1892; take a tour to the old tea fac­tory and mu­seum for a tast­ing; or visit a dis­tillery and learn how to make a crack­ing rum cock­tail. CHECK­ING IN: Spe­cial open­ing room rates from €265 + VAT ($411), valid to De­cem­ber 19. More: shangri-la.com.

ALSO TRY: The Brando, French Poly­ne­sia; One & Only Ocean Club Ba­hamas; The Mu­lia, Nusa Dua, Bali.

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