In the southwest of Mauritius, on the Domaine de Bel Ombre (Domaine de Bel Ombre), the wealth of fine-dining options is equal to the splendour of the exceptional setting. From Asia to Europe, with local delicacies en route, this is a culinary journey with a multiplicity of savours and flavours, enough to titillate even the most demanding palettes.
photos : vlh image bank | atipik ltd
There is nowhere in Mauritius that compares with the delicious range of cuisine found on the Domaine de Bel Ombre (Domaine de Bel Ombre). Diners have a choice of twelve fine restaurants, each with a cachet of its own.
From the elegance of Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort to the cool chic of the C Beach Club, from the Heritage Awali Golf & Spa Resort and the Club House at the Heritage Golf Club to the colonial-era Chateau de Bel Ombre, visitors can find whatever they are looking for and enjoy something different each time they dine.
As Enrico Rodati, the Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort’s Italian Executive Chef explains, “Our guests are often looking for variety and we even have the advantage of main restaurants with completely different concepts in our two adjoining resorts Heritage Awali Golf & Spa Resort’s Balafon Restaurant features a traditional buffet whilst Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort has a table d’hote menu which changes daily. Where the Domaine de Bel Ombre is also special is that we have restaurants outside the hotels, each with its own character. We try to give each one its own distinctive touch.”
Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort’s cuisine is a creative balance between tradition and modernity with a fusion of savours. A special feature is the way guests can discuss with the chef the make-up of a specific dish in the spectacular setting of an open kitchen.
Annabella’s, the main restaurant, is named after the wife of the Irishman, Charles Edward Telfair, a keen botanist and humanist, who made the Domaine de Bel Ombre a model of development in the 19th century and also contributed to Mauritius’ development in other sectors. The restaurant has a chic brasserie style. The atmosphere is reminiscent of a plantation house, with four distinct areas, so that guests can enjoy a change of décor from one day to another whilst savouring a European cuisine with Mauritian touches.
At the chef’s table, in the middle of Annabella’s kitchen, guests can revel in a specially created menu made from fresh produce. An appropriate wine is served with each dish. “We invite guests,” says Chef Ravi Kanhye, “to eat in the kitchen, with all the activities going on, where they can watch the chef prepare the dishes. You can call it a true interactive experience, something a number of our guests enjoy.”
For its part, the Palmier Restaurant, next to the beach and alongside the pool, features a light and varied cuisine of salads, sandwiches, snacks, ice-creams and refreshments, with the sea never more than a glance away.
Gin’ja, on the other hand, has a more Asian flavour.
Located at the far end of the hotel, where sunsets are particularly spectacular, this fashionable restaurant offers sophisticated dining pan-Asian style, with a fun live-cooking teppanyaki corner. Its Gin’ja Bar is also the place to soak up the most beautiful of views out over the lagoon.
Heritage Awali Golf & Spa Resort, just a stone’s throw away, transports guests into the warm and colourful atmosphere of Africa. The main restaurant, Balafon, which takes its name from an African musical instrument, is made up of four chalets bordered by reflecting pools. It offers a sophisticated culinary voyage taking in traditional Mauritian dishes to food from around the world.
The Resort also has a beach restaurant serving tasty and colourful Mediterranean food and seafood specialities. Against a backdrop of the turquoise waters of the lagoon and the swimming pool. Infinity Blue has a laid-back atmosphere, the place to enjoy a meal barefoot in the sand with an unlimited view of the lagoon.
Alternatively, the Amafrooty is the perfect place for a light salad or sandwich lunch, seated on the edge of the main swimming pool.
For something completely different at night, guests can dine once a week at the Boma, in a friendly open-air setting. Seated around a camp fire, guests can watch an African show as they tuck into grilled meats or fresh fish cooked over a log fire.
The Chateau de Bel Ombre has quite another atmosphere. A 19th century colonial-style mansion, now superbly restored, tempts guests to enjoy delicious Mauritian food in a period setting. As Chef Rodati says, “Our emphasis is very much on local produce.”
The C Beach Club is somewhere else again. A short distance from the Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort, the Club has to be the trendiest spot in the south of the island. It combines Mediterranean flavours with Mauritian touches in a contemporary setting, with a splendid infinity pool equipped with sun loungers and “love-nests”, stretching along to the beach.
Its Cyan Restaurant specialises in Mediterranean tapas, mezze and antipasti, and is a place that becomes even more elegant in the evening when the sun has set. Next to the swimming pool, at the Coast Restaurant, people gather, often barefoot in the sand, round a brick oven which acts like a campfire, creating a very sociable atmosphere. The menu features a light cuisine of grills, pizzas and grilled vegetables.
Whether or not you play golf, the Heritage’s Club House is also worth visiting for a light meal whilst gazing out over the Estate’s championship golf course.
With such a range of choice, the only problem for visitors to the Domaine de Bel Ombre is deciding where to eat next!