Sands Suites Resort and Spa is a luxury beachfront property on the southern fringe of Wolmar, a village on Mauritius’s west coast. As such it’s ideally placed for a relaxing beach holiday in a location renowned for spectacular sunsets.
The reception area is a thatched, open-sided building with a high ceiling and beautiful views past the resort’s infinity pool onto the sea and the island’s Le Morne Peninsula. Le Morne Brabant, a steep-sided mountain, juts from that headland and is the heart of one of Mauritius’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Carp swim in ornamental pools near to the reception desk. If you enjoy seeing fish swimming, Sands Suites Resort and Spa will prove an excellent choice of holiday destination. It’s also possible to observe numerous species in the seawater if you bring snorkelling equipment or, at the very least, swimming goggles. You don’t need to head out more than a few paces into the pleasantly warm water to appreciate nature’s show.
The curving infinity pool offers an alternative if you enjoy dips to cool off but don’t want to swim in the saltwater of the Indian Ocean. So too does the range of water-based activities that you can book onto while staying at the resort and book down at the beachfront activity centre. They include sea-kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding and boat trips.
The region’s birdlife is also impressive. Bulbuls and myna birds count among the species commonly seen in and around the resort. Expect to see them up close as you sit outside on your balcony and at tables by the poolside. Birds flit between tables seeking dropped crumbs, making them easy to photograph should you be interested in colourful additions to your Instagram feed.
The resort’s spacious modern rooms are spread over three stories in thatched buildings just a short shuffle from the shore. Most of the accommodation is reached via staircases but the 26 Deluxe Suites offer direct access to Sand’s neatly tended garden. Air-conditioned, the suites feature a wall-mounted television, minibar and have tea and coffee-making facilities. If you don’t fancy flopping onto the bed after a day in the sun you can sit outside on the balcony or sprawl on the sofa under the reading lamp.
The bathroom has both a bathtub and a walk-in shower offering an invigorating blast, ideal for washing away the last vestiges of sleep on a morning or freshening up before dinner. Bulgari toiletries are supplied and there’s a hairdryer, should you need it. The double washbasins mean there’s no need to wait around to clean your teeth at the end of the day if you’re travelling with somebody special.
The compact walk-in wardrobe is ideal for tidying away clothing and footwear. The area has an electronic safe and an umbrella is supplied. In the tropics umbrellas can prove just as handy for the shade they cast as for protection against rain. During the rainy season, from December into April, showers tend to be intense but relatively brief, meaning holidays continue after a short session under shelter.
The open-sided bar is a lovely spot to breath in the earthy aroma of the summer rain or seek shade from the sunshine while sipping drinks. As you’d expect of an upscale resort, service is attentive and professional at Sands, meaning that you won’t need to wait long and can choose from a range of tropical cocktails to ease into the holiday mood.
A session in the spa is likely to relax you further. Treatments are offered in four rooms, two of which are designed for couples’ massages. The spa also has a sauna plus a hammam-style steam room.
Should you wish to work out, weights and cardiovascular training equipment stands ready to use in the gym. Towels and water are supplied on the cardio machine, meaning you don’t need to schlepp yours from your suite. Beach volleyball and group exercise sessions in the infinity pool also count among ways of working off calories consumed while on holiday.
With three onsite restaurants, there’s variety in the dining options and cuisines served at Sands Suites Resort and Spa. The principal restaurant is known as Tamarind Terrace and serves breakfast and dinner. For more exclusive moments reserve a table at Spices, offering Mediterranean-influenced fine-dining in an air-conditioned environment, or overlooking the beach at Pink Peppercorn, where salads and fish dishes feature on the menu.
Themed evenings are also an option at the resort. For example, guests can dress in Indian-style clothing then dine on South Asian cuisine or book a candlelit dinner on the beach. There’s even an opportunity to learn how to open a Champagne bottle with a sword before sitting down to drink the chilled wine.
All told, this is very much a place to unwind and enjoy the Mauritian sunshine. Beach lovers who appreciate service with a personal touch and an indulgent dash of luxury are likely to enjoy a holiday based at Sands Suites Resort and Spa.
Sands Suites Resort and Spa, Wolmar, Flic en Flac, Mauritius.
Tel: +(230) 403 12 00
The resort is a little less than one hour’s drive north-west of Mauritius’s Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport. The 51-kilometre route via Phoenix along the M2 is easy to follow. The property is just south of the seaside village of Wolmar. It lies approximately 28 kilometres south-west of Port Louis, the capital city of Mauritius. Following the A3 southwards onto the coast road is the most direct way of getting to Sands Suites Resort and Spa.
Type of Hotel: Luxury 4-Star Resort Hotel
Number of Rooms: 92 suites with complimentary Wi-Fi. The resort offers four classes of accommodation. There’s an Exclusive Suite with two bedrooms as well as Beachfront, Deluxe and Superior Suites.
Price Band: Medium
Insider Tip: Take a seat by the bar late in the afternoon and order a mocktail or cocktail while watching the sun set turn the sky golden over the Indian Ocean. Intersperse days by the pool or down on the beach with excursions to explore Mauritius’s landscape and heritage.
Reviewer’s Rating: 9/10
See the Sands Suites Resort and Spa website for a full list of facilities and to check the availability and pricing of accommodation. Find out more about things to do in the country on the Mauritius tourism information website. Air Mauritius offers direct flights to Mauritius from London Heathrow. The flights have a duration of approximately 12 hours. Kreola, a destination management company based in Mauritius, can arrange transfers, activities and excursions on the island.
Stuart Forster is an award-winning freelance travel writer based in North East England. Stuart is the editor of the Go Eat Do travel and food blog and a contributor to national newspapers and travel magazines.
Photographs by Stuart Forster