Best hotels in Mauritius: How top designers remade luxury in paradise
Luxury hotels have staked claims to Mauritius's famed beaches for decades, but over the last couple of years, elite designers have remade venerable island institutions and built new paradise retreats from the ground up. There are dozens of top-notch resorts and hotels across the island, but here's a list of 10 of the best and most interesting.
Oberoi Mauritius, Turtle Bay Marine Park, Balaclava
While this isn't a couples-only resort, the Oberoi feels like a honeymooners retreat. There is a kids' club for the little ones, but everything from the waterfall at the entrance to the villas with private pools says romantic luxury getaway.
Repeatedly voted the best hotel in Mauritius at the World Travel Awards, this is the sort of place where guests return to their room to find their tub filled with rose petals.
The Oberoi Mauritius, The Oberoi Turtle Bay Pointe, aux Piments, Mauritius; +230 204 3600
Angsana Balaclava Mauritius
The famed Thai resort brings its chic Asian style to a retreat that's meant as a couples getaway.
Seriously, they offer a "romance concierge" who can organize a couple's massage or set up a private candlelight dinner inside the rooms overlooking the beach. They can even organize a wedding.
The hotel is secluded, beautiful and enjoys glorious sunsets every evening. The spa is one of the best in Mauritius.
Angsana Balaclava Mauritius, Turtle Bay, Balaclava, Mauritius; +230 204 1888
Shangri-La's Le Touessrok Resort & Spa
Recently renovated, the Shangri-La combines modern Asian design with family-friendly amenities.
Long owned by South African hotel magnate Sol Kerzner, Shangri-La was brought in to spruce up the place and take over the management.
The hotel used to reflect a particularly South African sense of Mediterranean design. Now it has modern Asian interiors, with rough or natural woodwork balanced by soft earth tones that work to make the ocean water appear even more vibrant.
The resort has four beaches and a private island, Ilot Mangénie, that's only for guests. Another private island, Ile aux Cerfs, has an 18-hole golf course designed by Bernhard Langer.
Shangri-La's Le Touessrok Resort & Spa, Coastal Road, Trou d'Eau Douce, Mauritius; +230 402 7400
The Address Boutique Hotel
The Address is run by Indigo Hotels, best known for its business hotels around Mauritius's commercial centers.
This is a hybrid, with the functionality of a business hotel with some of the amenities of a resort. It's not a beach getaway. The hotel is built inside a gated community along a lagoon.
Rooms overlook trees and waterways, and homes are designed with a vaguely Mediterranean sensibility.
The hotel is designed as a series of terraces overlooking an indoor central atrium, while outside seating and lounge chairs are arranged under the shade of sails. Residents of the community of Port Chambly may wander in for a meal at the restaurants.
Just drive slowly. The streets are paved with rough volcanic rocks.
The Address Boutique Hotel, Port Chambly, Terre Rouge, Mauritius; +230 405 3000
20 Degres Sud
One of the best-kept secrets in Mauritius, this 36-room boutique hotel is hidden down a narrow neighborhood street in Grand Baie. The location removes it from the main tourist drag by the marina, but keeps guests on the white-sand beaches of the bay.
The hotel itself is sheltered by an old coconut grove, with balconies overlooking the water.
Dining in the hotel is exquisite, but there are more creative options on offer as well, like a meal above the 90-year-old Lady Lisbeth, which carries up to eight people for a cruise around the bay while enjoying a gourmet meal.
The hotel also organizes a longer dinner journey by catamaran to the abandoned island of Île Plate, where tables are set among the ruins of the old Dutch governor's mansion.
Hotel 20 Degres Sud, Coastal Road, Pointe Malartic, Grand Baie, Mauritius; +230 263 5000