If you only go on 1 island holiday, go to Seychelles (and stay at a Constance resort)

On or about the evening of Sunday 9 December, after a particularly slow week at work.. I found myself fantasising about travelling. Again. I hadn’t made plans for December, apart from 3 nights at Zimbali (which really aren’t worth even blogging about but I will cover that trip sometime over the next few weeks).

I had been in touch with the PR for Constance Hotels and Resorts, a group of 7 luxury 5 star island hotels and resorts, for some time, and we had pencilled in February as a tentative date for a trip to the Seychelles. However, work is going to be busy then for both myself and my hubby, and I was stressing about taking leave then and wondering if it would even be possible. 

I then decided to take a chance and see if Constance still had availability for the very next week, and contacted Air Seychelles to check for reasonably priced flights.
I really thought there was no way I’d be able to pull it off 5 days ahead of time, but somehow it just all worked out. The place I book my cats in had a last minute cancellation so I was able to send them for boarding, the return flight from Seychelles landed hours before we were due to depart for Durban, we got a good deal on the flights, and I was able to go into a few days of negative leave.
So by Wednesday morning, our trip to Seychelles for 3 days later was confirmed- and I was just bursting with excitement!

I’ve been fortunate enough to experience a few Indian Ocean islands. I’ve been to Zanzibar, Mozambique and Mauritius (twice!)
I didn’t doubt that I would have a fantastic time in Seychelles, but I didn’t anticipate it to be that much different from Mauritius. I was SO wrong. I stayed in 5 star properties on all the above islands, but both the setting and service of all these don’t even come close to what I experienced at Constance. Also, Seychelles has far more natural beauty than Mauritius and is less commercial, so you feel as though you’ve really escaped the city.

We were due to visit the 2 Constance properties in the Seychelles, Ephélia, situated on 

Mahé (the main and biggest island), and the other, Lémuria, on Praslin (the second biggest island). You may not be aware that the Seychelles is actually a collection of 115 different islands, many of them private. Will and Kate actually visited one of the exclusive private islands for their honeymoon.

Praslin is only a 15 minute (very scenic) flight away from Seychelles, so after a short stopover in  Mahé, we arrived at Constance Lemuria around 9pm at night.

The 5 star treatment started with us being picked up in an X5 at the airport. A black one, with cream leather interior- my dream car. At that moment, I knew it would be a good holiday. Upon arrival at the hotel, after being greeted with refreshing cold towels scented with rosewater, we checked into our room. Our room was magnificent. It was huge, firstly. We had an Apple TV, with at least 200 dvds pre-programmed into the television. We spent a good half hour oohing and aahing over the tv, which could connect to the internet and worked like a computer. We had a private balcony to admire the seaside view from, a big bathroom with his and hers basins, and a spacious lounge area as well.

We got treated to a bottle of champagne, it was the real stuff from France- not sparkling wine!

The balcony

After ogling over checking out our room, we rushed off to one of Lémuria‘s 3 restaurants to get some dinner before the buffet closed at 10pm. Now, I’m usually not a fan of buffets. Mass produced, industrial food does not do it for me. But this is no normal buffet. You get to choose an amuse bouche from a wide selection. Think mini sushi, prawn cocktail, tuna salad- all individually presented. Main courses were varied and delicious- the pastas are made while you wait, the tandoori is grilled in front of you. And the dessert buffet is not a buffet at all- it’s a high tea. I could tell there was a huge amount of attention to detail given to each and every dessert. They were perfectly presented! The 5 star service we experienced upon arrival continued, with a waiter taking my plate from me as soon I finished serving myself at the buffet and actually carrying it to our table for me.

Trust me- these taste as good as they look!

After being sufficiently blown away by the food, we headed to bed for some well needed rest. Breakfast the next morning was a huge variety of everything you’d expect from a 5 star buffet plus a little bit more. I loved that pancakes were freshly made while you wait, I treated myself to a nutella crepe every morning 🙂 We also enjoyed the variety of preserves on offer, including banana compote!

Coconut and chocolate cake with a variety of compotes

We had 3 full days to spend at the resort, most of which were spent taking full advantage of everything Lémuria had to offer- namely sunset walks on the beach, golf, spa treatments, table tennis, and FOOD. Honestly, I would have been perfectly content to spend each and every day doing this:  

The staff at Constance won’t allow you to lift a finger. As soon as you arrive at the beach, you pick a sunbed and they lay out a towel for you and bring you the cocktail menu. I must warn you that drinks are extremely expensive- averaging at around R150 a cocktail. I didn’t mind too much (alcohol = empty kilojoules) so was quite happy to sip on the complimentary water we were given and enjoy 1 cocktail a day.

I can’t even explain to you how stunning the beach is. Luminous turquoise water, framed by lush, rocky mountains. Everytime I gazed up from my book I almost had to catch my breath because what was in front of me was that breathtaking. We also swam everyday, the water was so warm and clear, it felt like we were in a heated pool.

I loved my daily beach walks.. got caught up in my thoughts while standing on the edge of paradise..
The pool is split over 3 levels, this is one of them
I still have lots more to tell you about Lémuria. We visited the presidential villa, with a whopping R100,000 a night price tag, explored the 18 hole golf course, took a sunset walk to one of the top 10 most beautiful beaches in the world (Anse Georgette), and did a yoga session on a deck overlooking the ocean. All of that (and my review on Lémuria, the other resort we stayed at) on my blog from mid next week onwards.
In the meantime, visit Constance Lémuria’s website to read more about them: http://www.constancehotels.com/lemuria.html
I hope you all have a wonderful New Years, and that 2013 brings you everything you hope for. I’ll be turning 27 on Sunday- that just sounds old! No big plans, we were meant to go to Dullstroom but I’m really all holiday’d out (yes, I didn’t think that was possible either) so we’re just going to be home and relax. I haven’t seen some of my friends or my sister in ages so I’m looking forward to spending some QT with them as well.
So, I think this is a fitting post to end off 2012 with.. my Seychelles holiday was the best one I’ve ever been on, and I can’t wait to tell you about it in more detail and share some of my photos with you- I took some stunners!
If you’ll allow me, I have one last favour to ask of you. Voting closes today, please click on the below badge to vote for Jozilicious in the 2012 SA Blog awards. I’d be so grateful 🙂
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