OMG. It is BITTERLY cold in the UK. My fingers are almost frostbitten as I type this. The husband/heating arguments are in full bloom. It’s time to take ourselves off somewhere. Somewhere warmer. To a little bit of Paradise.
Ahhh – now that almost feels a bit bit better already eh?
My family and I have just returned from a holiday to the very beautiful island of Mauritius. When we were there, we spent a brilliant day at LUX Resorts flagship resort, LUX Belle Mare.
Now, LUX Resorts were not really on my radar until Penny from Heidi Klein told me it was one of her favourite family resorts when I interviewed her. In fact she has created a bespoke line of bikinis especially for them. I hate to say it but I had the impression prior to that, that they were a brand that was aspiring to be Luxury – hence the name. Oh how very, very, VERY wrong I was.
The swimming pool is the largest on the island. Frankly the largest I have ever seen. But we girls know size doesn’t matter. Nonetheless, my girls were in awe.
The LUX Belle Mare has been interior designed by the genius Kelly Hoppen, and was beautiful. What stood out to me if I had to sum the whole Resort up was “Attention to Detail”. I’ll show you what I mean.
Love the mixed chairs and picture tables at the K-Bar.
The reception was cool, comfortable and very stylish.
And then the rooms.
You know the room has been designed by a woman as it has a plug point for everything, in all the right places – one of the issues I pretty much wherever I stay.I cannot tell you how many times I have had to sit on the floor, behind a door, just to have a plug point near a mirror so I can dry my hair and actually SEE what I am doing. And no, I don’t like to dry my hair in a bathroom full of steam after I have showered. Frizz.
The room is also properly lit. I know that sounds so obvious, but I cannot tell you how often I am getting ready in practical darkness. And it’s stylish – oh so stylish. And comes with it’s own iPad for your use during your stay.
So we had breakfast. It was literally the best breakfast buffet I have ever seen in a hotel. Food station after food station – this was more than a buffet. There is literally something for everyone. Even me, who hates breakfast and would rather be on the beach.
We had a quick tour of the resort. Great tennis courts, a lovely gym and three great kids clubs. One for 2-7 year olds, one for 8-11 year olds and one for teens. Not a club of course as these guys are mini adults of course, but decks where they could learn how to DJ – that kind of thing. Very cool. Not that my kids will go to kids clubs. Of course. But for those that do, there was plenty on offer – fishing, snorkelling, swimming, cooking and more. And if that’s not enough to keep the kids busy – all the watersports are free too.
After the tour, the girls, and not their mother (#justsaying) were treated to a Gentle Spa treatment (massage) each in the LUX Me Spa. Which they thoroughly enjoyed – not least as the oil used was chocolate fragrance. Details, details. LUX make all their own beauty products and none have any nasties in. If it wasn’t for both my body and bag already being overweight to go back to London, I would have bought some.
There are four restaurants on the property. On our day at the resort, lunch was at Beach Rouge, which is, well, their more casual restaurant on the beach. Open for lunch and supper – yet changing it’s look from blue for day, to red for night – it’s very Ibiza in it’s design. Very cool, but very relaxed. There is a kids menu here, though the menu is so varied, even the fussiest of fussy eating kids will find something they like. Again, the food was delicious – from a light, citrussy ceviche, to spicy fresh baby octopus. Seriously yum.
We chilled on the beach after lunch – me, in some kind of food coma heaven, my husband checking some utterly irrelevant sports score on his phone, and my girls collecting some of the beautiful shells that appear at the waters edge, like jewels.
Our last outing of the day, was a horse ride along this beautiful beach. We loved it. The only shame was that it wasn’t great weather that day so the pictures are not as beautiful as they should have been!!
After changing in our room, dinner was at Duck Laundry is a world class contemporary Chinese restaurant. Not ideal for younger kids, although they are allowed – mine were fine. More than fine. The little madams wanted to return every night. It served very traditional Chinese food. Beautifully. And when I say World Class, I mean it would not be out of place in London or NYC as a top place to go. Really. All kitchens at the hotel are open like this. Keeps the kids busy, and the parents happy. Here the girls are wearing tutu dresses by Frou Frou.
After dinner, Roxie had a frozen latte from their coffee bar Cafe Lux. Move over Starbucks. LUX roast their own coffee – in fact we were shown how. It was so cool. And the smell was heavenly. But I digress. Roxie wanted this coffee and I went to pay and the guy behind the counter told me that the till was broken so it was free. It happened to everyone that stopped by after that. They didn’t close it for fear of losing some money – they continued to serve us all, happily. Details, details.
There are so many other details I loved – but I could literally write War & Peace – so I have had to pick a few of my faves.
For example, there’s an old-fashioned phone box on site – and LUX will allow any guest who wants to, to call home every day for free called LUX Phone Home. Nice touch. Please don’t tell my mother about this…
A Tree of Wishes – I asked the girls to wish for me to win the Lottery – still waiting – maybe it doesn’t work, but still, it’s pretty and a nice detail. Like this nook, where Minnie and I sat. There are many of these around the Resort. Each different. Each very stylish.
Honestly, truly great day out was had by all. And then we sadly returned to our own hotel and started to cast a lot of judgment on it!! But there’s more.
Although we did not visit on our day at the hotel, we came back to go to Amari, is the resort’s new Indian restaurant led by Michelin star Chef Vineet Bhatia. The chef has restaurants in both London, Geneva, Dubai and many more. This restaurant is not for kids under 10 years old – lucky for me I have very well behaved 8.5 year old twins! Now I am a huge fan of Indian food. This place was again, exceptional. Delicious. I’m practically dribbling just remembering it. The girls really liked it too. We were all give a bindi when we walked in – part of the experience. Again, details. We were invited into the kitchen to watch our how our Naan bread is made. The girls loved that. Girls are wearing Stella McCartney Kids and Salt Water Sandals.
We also came back to check out ‘ici’ – their own ice-cream and ice-lolly bar. Which was again, delicious.
As well as the four restaurants in the Resort, there is also a food truck for lunch that was inspired by the brilliant film Chef. Each year the truck and food will change. Well, on our day at the Resort, I clocked the truck and wanted it in my life (FOMO and all that). However, with no time or space for any more food on our day there, we came back a couple of days later, to go to the truck.
This year the food is American food with a South American twist – burgers, grilled cheese, guacamole…all so yum. Very casual – it was basically a take-away. We absolutely loved it. Like, beyond.
So in a nutshell, if you are looking for a luxury family holiday experience, where literally no stone is left unturned to give you that – I would definitely consider LUX Resorts. However, please don’t sue me if your clothes don’t fit after you come home….