Mauritius

Cool, luxurious and child-friendly? We test three LUX* resorts in Mauritius

Last updated 27th January 2024

When it comes to fabulous Mauritius family hotels, LUX* Resorts & Hotels really takes the crown with no fewer than three of the island’s top 10 hotels. Sean King put them all to the test on a recent family holiday, and here are the results.

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LUX* Grand Gaube, Mauritius family hotels

The stunning island of Mauritius is regarded by many as the jewel in the crown of the Indian ocean. While the Seychelles and the Maldives seem particularly geared towards couples and honeymooners, Mauritius has built its reputation as a family-friendly destination, combining tropical sunshine, pristine white-sand beaches and crystal-clear turquoise waters with hotels and resorts with a genuine focus on the happiness of children. And as we all know if the kids are having fun, then mum and dad can relax and enjoy all the facilities and amenities of the increasing number of luxury hotels on the island.

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Signature beachy cool, LUX* Mauritius family hotels

How LUX* perfected the formula for Mauritius family hotels

A perfect example of these perfect Mauritius family hotels comes from LUX* Resorts & Hotels, which operates three out of the top 10 hotels on the island (according to Tripadvisor): the Grand Baie, the Grand Gaube and the Grand Belle Mare.

Although each hotel has its own style and approach, the LUX* signature is clear in their combination of a modern, elegant design aesthetic and best-in-class childcare alongside fitness and wellbeing facilities that are as good as you will find anywhere.

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Beach view pool, LUX* Grand Baie, Mauritius

Welcome to LUX* Grand Baie in the north of Mauritius

LUX* Grand Baie in the north of Mauritius opened in 2022. Taking the luxury of Mauritius family hotels to the next level, this new generation boutique-style hotel oozes style and elegance and is one of the first of its kind in the Indian Ocean.

Its distinctive look is born out of a collaboration between award-winning British interior designer Kelly Hoppen CBE and Mauritian architect, Jean-Francois Adam. Together they have thought of everything needed for the ultimate luxury hotel experience. And from the moment you arrive, the imposing lobby with its 100ft ceilings, sets the tone for what’s to come.

No detail seems too small to make sure hotel guests are transported into an environment where they can switch off, relax and enjoy themselves without a care in the world.

Let your children discover real Play at LUX* Grand Baie

Nowhere is this chilled approach more evident than in LUX* ‘Play’ childcare. Here they take the welfare and wellbeing of children seriously and it’s a key selling point for LUX* Resorts & Hotels. Play is all about mindfulness and modern experiences for children between three and 12 years old. The activities are designed to support individuality, self-discovery and development with programmes centred around five pillars: eat well, move, care, feel and create.

Children can try their hands at ‘Little Green Fingers’ gardening projects; make gelato at the Ice Cream Lab or find their calm with sessions of Junior Yoga. And teens get to spend time at Studio 17 playing vintage arcade games, expanding their DJ skills or creatively exploring at the Photofanatics station. They can also enjoy the hotel’s share of the Indian Ocean, and take advantage of windsurfing, kayaking and paddleboarding lessons.

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Wellness at LUX* Grand Gaube, Mauritius family hotels

LUX* Grand Baie raises the wellness bar for Mauritius family hotels

The majority of guests spend their time enjoying the range of beach activities or simply, relaxing by the pool. However, special mention has to go to the wellness offerings at Grand Baie. What better way to spend some time while kids are having fun at Play than trying one of the hotel’s three new wellness programmes. Inspired by the elements, each of the three programmes aims to match guests’ energy to air, fire and earth, while also nourishing your body and mind. The wellness experience at LUX* Grand Baie is definitely a cut above the rest and worth checking out.

Alternatively, for those looking to burn off some energy and maintain fitness levels, the gym is first class and includes a spin studio as well as weights, running machines and a yoga studio. Personal trainers are also available upon request.

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Junior Suite, LUX* Grand Gaube, Mauritius

Suites and villas designed for families by Kelly Hoppen

Kelly Hoppen’s touch really stands out in Grand Baie’s accommodation. You’ve the choice of 10 Family Suites, each 130m² and designed with two adjoining rooms, as well as two separate terraces, and spacious family bathrooms. If you’re looking for a bit more space and privacy, the 240m² duplex villas are heavenly, as are the hotel’s pool villas, beachfront villas and, the ultimate luxury: a 620m² Grand beach/pool villa.

Food, like everything at LUX* Grand Baie is outstanding. To celebrate a special occasion, dinner at the Ai Kisu unquestionably hits the mark. A gastronomic Japanese-inspired restaurant and bar, it’s a treat for every sense, from the walls decorated with Japanese art to the sights and smells from the open kitchen, and Warayaki straw cooking method. It even has its own ‘Soy Sauce Sommelier’, I have never seen one of those before.

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Reception, LUX* Belle Mare

LUX* Belle Mare redefines Mauritius family hotels

Not to be out shone by its new sibling hotel in the north of the island comes the LUX* Belle Mare, recently reopened its doors to guests after a year of extensive refurbishment.

The reimagined resort has unveiled a striking new design by renowned Mauritian architect, Jean-Francois Adam. The interiors created by internationally acclaimed Mauritian designer, Jean-Marc Tang, are distinctly contemporary in tone, while also taking cues from the resort surroundings of lush greenery and sweeping ocean views. The team at Belle Mare have worked tirelessly to ensure the hotel reflects the essence of relaxed island living, where minimalism meets tropical design, while still retaining its relaxed family atmosphere.

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Pool, LUX* Belle Mare

Relax by one of the largest pools in Mauritius

As well as signature LUX* elements like Play kids club, Me Wellness & Me Spa, and Beach Rouge restaurants, there are many individual touches that distinguish this wonderful hotel. Coffee lovers can indulge in the brand new and uber elegant Maison LUX* which recently made its debut at the hotel, and offers a premium coffee experience alongside delectable delicacies. Though if ice cream is more your thing, you can explore a huge range of exciting flavours at the edge of Grand Baie’s pool, which also happens to be one of the biggest swimming pools on Mauritius.

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Beach Rouge, LUX* Belle Mare

Taste your way around the world at LUX* Belle Mare

LUX* Belle Mare  puts genuine emphasis on food too. All-day Mondo sits at the heart of the hotel and provides a wide selection of international cuisine, along with a kids’ buffet to catering to all tastes. Alternatively you have two signature restaurants to choose from. Duck Laundry offers modern Chinese dishes and chef-driven tasting menus peppered with house specialities like Peking duck, dim sum or Sichuan dishes. And Amari, helmed by the first Indian Michelin-starred Chef Vineet Bhatia, is another must-visit, featuring a modern interpretation of India’s rich heritage served in an earthy pink interior offset by contemporary murals.

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Beach LUX* Belle Mare

Indulge yourself in a range of Extraordinary Experiences

Extraordinary Experiences is yet another exciting LUX* offering at Belle Mare. This curated a one-of-a-kind collection of experiences allows guests to delve deeper into Mauritius and its incredible secrets.

Families can try anything from helicopter tours to luxury catamaran cruises complete with a private chef and mixologist.  ‘Slow Life On The East Coast’ is a unique way to discover the area’s wonders in a chauffeured vintage Bentley accompanied by a local expert. This half day road trip includes visits to traditional temples and the mythical forest of Bras d’Eau, and ends with a canapés and Champagne picnic on the beach. Naturally, the Bentley also turns a few heads as it gracefully wends its way round the East Coast.

Sustainability lies at the heart of LUX* Belle Mare family holidays

Sustainability lies at the heart Belle Mare, both in terms of how the hotel’s run and manage the hotel itself but also helping to educate guests about marine life conservation with Eco-Sud – an NGO specialising in marine biodiversity – or learning about rare endemic plant propagation at Ile Aux Aigrettes with the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation.

In addition to sustainable experiences, Belle Mare uses fresh pesticide-free vegetables and herbs from its own farm, and is involved in other initiatives like investing in energy and water efficiency, reducing waste through circular design and providing luxurious, yet naturally derived, in-room amenities and ethically-sourced organic oils in the hotel spa.

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Beach, LUX* Grand Gaube

LUX* Grand Gaube brings laid back retro chic to Mauritius

Another Kelly Hoppen design, LUX* Grand Gaube has a laid-back, retro-chic vibe set in lush tropical gardens, enveloped by undulating coves and the calmest of lagoons. This charming hotel is equally blessed with two tranquil beaches and two spectacular swimming pools. Although for us, the real highlight was the Turkish-themed Bodrum Blue restaurant, where you can sit on a jetty out at sea and simply watch the world go by. Only the perfect spot for lunch or dinner.

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Le Morne Brabant, Mauritius

What to do and see on family holidays in Mauritius

Aside from Mauritius family hotels, the island has tons on offer for young and inquisitive minds, heaps of cultural heritage to explore, as well as diverse landscapes, and extraordinary wildlife.

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Botanical Gardens, Mauritius

Top family attractions in Mauritius

  • Pamplemousses Botanical Garden (Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Garden): explore the lush greenery of this famous botanical garden, home to a wide variety of plant species, giant water lilies, and the famous Talipot palm.
  • Casela World of Adventures: a great place for families, Casela offers a range of activities such as ziplining, quad biking, safari tours, and interaction with animals like lions and giraffes.
  • La Vanille Crocodile Park: located in the south of the island, this park is home to various species of crocodiles, giant tortoises, monkeys, and other animals. It provides an educational yet entertaining experience for the whole family.
  • Sugar Museum: gain insight into Mauritius’ history and economy at the Sugar Museum in Pamplemousses. The museum provides an interesting and educational experience for visitors of all ages.
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Chamarel Seven Coloured Earth Geopark

Adventurous attractions in Mauritius

  • Chamarel Seven Colored Earths: marvel at the unique natural phenomenon of sand dunes with seven distinct colours. It’s a fascinating geological formation and a great place for kids to learn about the Earth’s natural wonders.
  • Blue Bay Marine Park: enjoy snorkelling or glass-bottom boat tours in the Blue Bay Marine Park, where you can discover the vibrant coral reefs and diverse marine life.
  • Île aux Cerfs (Deer Island): a popular day-trip destination, Île aux Cerfs offers beautiful beaches, water sports, and a golf course. Families can relax on the sandy shores or engage in various water activities.
  • Mauritius Aquarium: located in Pointe aux Piments, the Mauritius Aquarium features a variety of marine species, including sharks, turtles, and colourful fish. It’s an engaging and educational experience for children.
  • Black River Gorges National Park: explore the island’s natural beauty with a visit to this national park, known for its lush forests, hiking trails, and breath-taking viewpoints.
  • Trou aux Cerfs: this dormant volcanic crater in Curepipe offers panoramic views of the island. Families can enjoy a leisurely stroll around the rim and take in the scenic landscapes.

How to plan your Mauritius family holiday

How to get there

Direct daily flights from London Gatwick with Air Mauritius, from 11 hours and 50 minutes

Where to stay

LUX* Grand Baie, North West Mauritius

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LUX* Belle Mare, East Mauritius

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LUX* Grand Gaube, North East Mauritius

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