I recently enjoyed a sunny holiday on the beautiful island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. You can read my trip reports here:
- Review: Austrian Airlines Boeing 777 Business Class from Vienna to Mauritius
- Review: One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius (today)
- Review: The Oberoi Beach Resort Mauritius
- Review: Four Seasons Resort Mauritius at Anahita
- Review: Shangri-La Le Touessrok, Mauritius
- Review: Eurowings Discover Airbus A330 Business Class from Mauritius to Frankfurt
Today: Review of One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius
- Location: Google maps
- Hotel website: One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius
- Tip: get complimentary VIP perks when booking via Virtuoso
One&Only Le Saint Géran, the legendary beach resort on the north-eastern coast of Mauritius, reopened in 2018 following a complete transformation and has risen again as the greatest celebration of its unrivaled Mauritian setting. The property’s private peninsula offers two stunning coastlines: on the east, the Indian Ocean, fringed by swaying palms; on the west, sugarcane-covered mountain views and a tranquil lagoon. Guests enjoy opportunities to connect with family while experiencing idyllic beaches, two sparkling pools, the blissful One&Only Spa, and Club One – a new hub for all things active. The resort’s collection of renovated and brand-new restaurants features Michelin-starred gastronomic displays and theater-style cooking.
Have you ever stayed at One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius? If so, what was your experience? Leave a comment.
In this review (more info and photos below my YouTube video):
- Pros & things I like
- Cons & things to know
- My verdict
- Tips for future guests & save money
- Best time to visit
- How to get there
PROS & THINGS I LIKE
- Boasting a dreamy location on the north-eastern coast of the island of Mauritius, One&Only Le Saint Géran set new standards of ultra-luxury in the Indian Ocean and beyond when it opened in 1975. At that time, tourism in Mauritius was in its infancy and the resort’s developers had the whole island to choose from, so they settled for the very best spot: a secluded and sheltered peninsula with 2 miles (1.2 km) of white-sand beaches surrounding a lush and natural coconut grove. One side of the peninsula is lapped by the calm waters of a lagoon while the other side overlooks the crystalline and coral reef-sheltered waters of the sparkling Indian Ocean. While it’s about an hour-long car ride winding past sugar cane fields to reach the resort from the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport, a 20-minute helicopter transfer is certainly the more scenic route, offering jaw-dropping bird’s-eye views of Mauritiu’s rugged mountains, spectacular lagoon and glistening beaches.
- One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius reopened in 2018 following a nine-month renovation and multi-million-dollar investment which has transformed the iconic property once again into one of the best beach resorts in the world. Nestled within lush tropical gardens, the much-loved colonial-style architecture has been preserved, while a comprehensive redesign process has introduced a cool, contemporary beach-inspired aesthetic, celebrating Mauritian lifestyle and culture. As guests arrive at the resort, soaring wooden doors open to reveal a majestic lobby, whose high-ceilinged stone and wood breezeway is interspersed with vast dome-shaped open windows. Floors of soft silver travertine and white washed walls echo the ripples of the seashore, reflecting light all around to create a bright and welcoming atmosphere. The lobby opens to the resort’s shoreline where a unique stainless-steel spherical structure is the eye catcher. Designed by Dong Sculpture in the form of a palm frond blowing in the wind, the sculpture symbolizes the strength of the Mauritian people to adapt to their changing environment.
- One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius features 142 redesigned guest rooms and suites, which are located in white-washed, low-lying pavilions whose architecture was inspired by old sugar cane factories and plantation houses. All of the resort’s 142 rooms and villas face the lagoon or the ocean, which means there’s absolutely no reason to be picky. During my holiday, I was upgraded to a magnificent ocean suite, which came with a separate living room (with sitting & dining area as well as a guest washroom), a spacious master bedroom with kingsize bed, and ensuite bathroom equipped with double vanity, cascading shower, freestanding tub and dressing area. Both the bedroom and living room opened to a gorgeous outdoor, shaded terrace which offered direct access to the resort’s beachfront lawns and white beach beyond. The suite’s furnishings, fabrics and soothing color scheme of beiges and greys evoke the lush tropical landscapes, the vibrant turquoise Indian Ocean, and the bleached white of Mauritian sand.
- One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius’ pristine peninsula gives way to 2 km (1.2 mi) of magnificent white sandy beaches shaded by hundreds of palm trees. The resort’s serene oceanfront features sugar-white sands, gentle waves and plenty of private sun loungers (including dozens of cabanas). Just behind this beach is the main swimming pool, overseen by dedicated lifeguards. Welcoming for all ages, this pool offers canopied cabanas and swim-up bars (those in need of tranquility can always retreat to the adults-only pool in spa; more on that later). The beach on the resort’s other side – the lagoon side – is blissfully sheltered, with warm waters that are perfect for paddling. The far end of this beach is also home to a water sports center, where guests can try out kayaks and paddleboards (motorized water sports are offered for a fee). The oceanfront and lagoonside beaches merge at the top of the peninsula into a magnificent sand bank, which makes for great photo opportunities and spectacular views of the sunset.
- One&Only Le Saint Géran offers an exceptional gastronomic experience created by top-notch guest chefs. Each dining experience celebrates Mauritius and its fusion of cuisines, spices and culture. There are several restaurants to choose from:
- PRIME is Mauritius’ first upmarket steakhouse restaurant and regularly hosts Michelin starred chefs. During my stay, celebrated French Chef Anne-Sophie Pic hosted an exclusive pop-up at Prime, called La Dame de Pic at One&Only Le Saint Géran, which showcased the Michelin-starred chef’s delicious dishes with a spectacular dinner menu.
- Serving exciting pan-Asian, tapas-style fusion cuisine, Tapasake is a Japanese restaurant built on stilts over the lagoon. The open kitchen allows guest to watch in awe as the chefs take on the grills, masterfully invoking traditional techniques to create their Japanese specialties with a Spanish twist.
- La Terrace is the resort’s stunning waterfront all-day restaurant, which is comprised of several chic pavilions floating on water ponds. Lavish buffets are nightly hosted at La Terrace, accompanied by live music and traditional dance. Each morning, a spectacular breakfast buffet is on display in the restaurant’s open kitchen (one of the most spectacular breakfast spreads I’ve ever seen at a hotel).
- Located next to Le Terrace is L’Artisan, an artisanal bakery serving barista prepared coffee, tempting pastries and light bites throughout the day. L’Artisan also serves exclusive plant-based dishes from US celebrity chef Matthew Kenney.
- Located in front of La Terrace, under the palm trees and overlooking the Indian Ocean, is Le Badamier, an al fresco venue serving southern French and Italian cuisine with an emphasis on freshly caught local seafood.
- Located on the tip of the peninsula, next to the main pool, is La Pointe, a beach restaurant with a casual, feet-in-the-sand ambiance, thatched pavilions and open fire grills.
- One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius features a beautiful spa center, which is centered around a stylish lap pool. Prior to, or post treatment, guests are invited to use the heat facilities including a steam room and sauna, or relax on day beds around the lap pool. Surrounding the pool are 13 treatment rooms, with some opening onto their own private garden with outdoor showers, allowing guests to relax, switch off and feel revived in their very own hideaway. Surrounded by water ponds and lush vegetation, the spa also features secluded outdoor gardens for blissful open-air therapy. In partnership with the award-winning ESPA brand, the spa offers tailored holistic experiences, ranging from pure relaxation to unique and signature wellness journeys utilizing indigenous and authentic techniques. Complementing this, the spa has also partnered with Biologique Recherche, offering bespoke facial treatments, and renowned multi-award-winning podiatrist Bastien Gonzalez to complete the wellness offering.
- At short distance from the lobby is the high energy Club One, the hub for all things activities at the resort, including a state-of-the-art indoor and outdoor fitness center, two studios for group classes like spinning, zumba, kick boxing, HIIT, TRX and an outdoor training area by MyEquilibria, the first in the Indian Ocean. Guests can also enjoy complimentary yoga and Pilates classes at the yoga pavilion, and world-class sporting facilities, including floodlit tennis courts, volleyball court, putting green, and Mauritius’ first ever Padel Courts. Club One is also home to a nutritious juice and snack bar, and One&Only Le Saint Geran’s dedicated recreational centers for children and teenagers, KidsOnly and OneTribe. Offering young guests tailored activities from art classes and sporting adventures, chill out areas, movie-nights, DJ parties and exclusive barbecues, there is a host of complimentary activities to keep all ages entertained.
- The resort is managed by One&Only, one of my favorite hotel brands in the world. The fabulous One&Only brand was created in 2002 exclusively for the luxury resort market by Solomon Kerzner – a South African accountant and business magnate – and now features some of the highest-rated resorts in the most idyllic spots in the world, such as the Maldives, Mexico, Montenegro, Rwanda and Cape Town. Each resort in the One&Only collection not only offers unique design and ambiance which embraces the local surroundings, but also an unparalleled commitment to the finest experience on every possible level. Luxurious accommodation is complemented by impeccable service, exclusive wellness sanctuaries, lively entertainment and a host of activities, as well as exquisite culinary adventures from some of the world’s most accomplished chefs.
CONS & THINGS TO KNOW
It’s extremely difficult, if not impossible, to fault One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius. The setting, design, beaches, wellness facilities, and exceptional dining offers are top-notch and world-class. Nonetheless, you may want to know the following:
- Like everywhere else in Mauritius, the terrific white sand beaches of One&Only Le Saint Géran – which rank among the best on the island – are open to the general public. However, the resort’s secluded location means that no day tourists venture out that far, so the beaches feel very private, serene and tranquil. Nonetheless, local vendors are allowed on the property’s beaches to sell goods such as shells, bracelets, and souvenirs to guests. While it wasn’t too bad, some beach hawkers were quite persistent and a bit annoying in their efforts to sell their stuff. Maybe it would be a better idea to not allow them on the beaches and instead, organize a street market with local crafts on selected evenings within the resort’s premises, which could be a win-win for both guests and street vendors.
- One&Only Le Saint Géran features a gorgeous adults-only pool at the heart of the spa. However, it’s the only dedicated adults-only area on the resort. The main pool on the beach – which is comprised of two parts, one part facing the lagoon and one part facing the ocean – is open to guests of all ages and it can be a bit crowded here when kids take over the pool, especially during the European school holidays (which was the case during my trip). IMHO, it would have been a better design concept if one part of the pool (e.g. the part facing the quieter lagoon side) was reserved for adults in search of blissful beach moments.
- One&Only Le Saint Géran mentions on its website that it has three pools. However, I could only count two real swimming pools during my trip: the main pool area on the beach near the tip of the peninsula and the adults-only pool at the spa. The third pool that is referred to by the resort on its website is the water pond surrounding the floating pavilions of Le Terrasse Restaurant, but that’s not really a pool as its only there for design purposes (it used to be a swimming pool prior to the resort’s refurbishment in 2017). You could of course have a swim here but it would be a little bit awkward to say the least :-).
- One&Only Le Saint Géran enjoys a secluded location, which is one of the main draws for most guests. But while it may be idyllic for a honeymoon couple or if you just want complete relaxation for a few days, it can fall short of expectations if you are looking for nightlife. If you prefer a bit of fun, music and action in the evening and being close to a wide variety of restaurants and clubs, this spot on the island might not be the best place for you.
- Location: 10/10
- Design: 10/10
- Pool: 9/10
- Rooms: 9/10
- Food: 10/10
- Breakfast: 10/10
- Spa: 9/10
- Service: 10/10
- Value for money: 10/10
- Overall experience: exceptional 9,4/10
TIPS FOR FUTURE GUESTS & SAVE MONEY
- Save money: get complimentary VIP perks at One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius when booking via Virtuoso (e.g. upgrade, daily breakfast, early check-in, late check-out, and $100 USD food & beverage credit).
- Save money: read here my tips for getting the best deal at a luxury hotel like One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius (and/or receive many free perks).
- Read my tips for preparing your trip in time.
BEST TIME TO VISIT
During the Mauritian summer months (November to April) the days are long, hot and humid. This is also cyclone season with January to March being the wettest months – so if you do go on a holiday to Mauritius at that time you should be prepared for some heavy rain. Since it never really gets cold on the island in winter (May to October) the average temperature simply drops from sticky to balmy. So in general, the best time to visit Mauritius for cooler, drier weather is from May to December. That said, if you’re planning to stay on the east coast, I recommend avoiding the months of July and August as this is when the wind is at its strongest on this side of the island.
HOW TO GET THERE
The resort is located a 60-minute drive from the airport, and you can book a private transfer through the hotel, or prebook a much cheaper taxi. Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport (SRU) is served by many airlines (click here for a continuously updated list of airlines that offer direct flights to Mauritius).
Below is a selection of my photos of One&Only Le Saint Géran Mauritius. To view more photos (including the FABULOUS breakfast and dinners), click here.