The Grounds, Garden Villa, and Service
I'm going to do a three part series on the Four Seasons Resort Mauritius at Anahita. We had such a wonderful time there that in order to cover everything, I felt that three posts would be necessary. We'll start with our initial arrival experience, our villa, and the resort grounds.
After four consecutive segments, we had finally arrived on the other side of the world, literally. While we had originally planned to stay at the St. Regis, their opening plans changed. Therefore, so did our lodging plans. Having never stayed at a Four Seasons before, we decided to stay there. The Mauritius airport isn't too much to look at it, but it was clean and entering the country was quick and painless. There's a lot of construction going on, and their new terminal, which isn't yet open, really looks like it's going to be a first class facility. The Four Seasons had some options in terms of luxury car transportation from the airport to the hotel, but we were happy to just take a cab.
It's about a 45 minute drive from the Mauritius airport to the Four Seasons. Interestingly enough, it is on the southeast segment of the island, and most of the other hotels are on the west side. The Four Seasons is inside a small resort community called Anahita. There are some private residences, another hotel, a golf course, and the Four Seasons. This community reminded me very much of the resort community of Punta Mita. Once our taxi pulled up to the resort, our bags were taken from us, loaded onto a buggy, and we were escorted to the reception area. They immediately welcomed us by name, and they congratulated us on our honeymoon.
We sat down on some couches that overlooked a pretty fantastic view, as seen below.
The hostess brough us some cold, moist towels and some mango iced tea. I don't even like iced tea, but this tasted delicious and refreshing. The hostess walked us through some features of the resort, explained all the restaurants to us, and gave my wife a nice bouquet to congratulate her on the honeymoon - what a nice touch!
The check-in experience was one of the nicer ones I have ever had, and it really reminded my wife and I of checking in at the Ritz Carlton Reserve in Krabi at Phulay Bay. Once we had taken care of anything, she escorted us to a buggy to take us to our villa.
My understanding is that every villa at the Four Seasons Mauritus has the exact features, layout, etc. The only difference is the yard. Some villa yards lead into mangroves, some have views of the ocean, some have garden views. While a garden view isn't as nice as an ocean view, they do offer a bit of added privacy. Despite the fact that there was a villa right next to ours, the unit really was built to offer a feeling of exclusivity and privacy. You enter through an outdoor gate on the side, and the first thing you see is the backyard with personal plunge pool.
We were pretty impressed! The only personal plunge pool I've had before that was more impressive than this was at the Ritz Carlton Reserve in Krabi. From the yard, double doors open up to the main room.
There was a king size bed, a large HDTV, and a small table with chairs (not visible in the pic). The sinks and bathtub were behind the bed, and there were some double doors that opened up to let light in the room.
Walking behind the bed, we found the large bathtub, two sinks, a huge walk-in closet. The toilet had its own room opposite the closet. Our bags were already in the closet for us. The shower was behind the bathtub, and if you walked past the indoor shower, you were greeted with a really large outdoor shower. Neat!
The only other outdoor shower I've ever had was at the St. Regis Punta Mita, and I have to say that this one here at the Four Seasons was even better. Instead of it just being outdoors, it really felt like you were taking a shower somewhat out in the wilderness as the drain was hidden under rocks and there were flowers around. Also, instead of there being a normal showerhead, water just flowed from a ledge that was pretty high up. I got pretty awesome water pressure from the concentrated fall of water from high up.
After touring our room, we noticed that the the Four Seasons left us a bottle of champagne, some chocolates and macaroons, and a nice note. They really got all the little touches just right, and throughout our entire stay, it felt like the staff were always going above and beyond to exceed our expectations. And in another nice touch, there was also a note from the St. Regis with a welcome amenity. I thought it was a really nice gesture of the St. Regis to leave us a note and welcome us to the island, even though we couldn't be staying at their resort.
After settling in, we took a walk of the grounds, before eventually eating dinner at Bambou, one of the resort's three restaurants. The grounds are impeccable, and walking through the resort is reminiscent of walking through the St. Regis Punta Mita. The beach at the Four Seasons in Mauritius is not gigantic, but the beach space they do have is perfectly clean and very picturesque, even at night. Check out this shot I got our first night there (yes there is some kind of effect on the pic, but I'm not sure which - it came built into the camera).
After walking along the beach, we walked across the bridge that goes across the lagoon in front of the reception, and the resort truly does look beautiful at night.
The next day, we went to the pool area. Before I even discuss how great the pool area is, it's worth talking about the service. Every day, as soon as we picked out chairs to sit on, a staff member was almost immediately there to help us get set up, set out towels, and give us drink menus. They have a system similar to a brazilian steakhouse. You have a card with a green side and a red side. Red side up = leave me alone. Green side up = service please! In addition to their extensive drink menu, they always brought us complimentary water and, miniature mango iced teas, and other treats. In terms of the actual facilities, it's a great swimming pool. There's a pool that starts at an upper level and then flows into the lower infinity pool.
All of the poolside chairs had accompanying towels that were almost more like fitted sheets. At the end of the infinity pool is the beach area and dock. Here's a gratuitious panorama of one side of the beach area (clickable for full-size image).
The dock is where all the boats depart the resort. There is a free hourly boat that goes to Ile Aux Cerfs, an island just across the way where you can find some souvenirs, a beautiful public beach, and some fun touristy things to do.
We spent the first day being lazy and relaxing. Actually, my wife doesn't exactly deal with jetlag that well… so she spent most of the day sleeping by the pool ;-).
I'm also a stickler for good hotel gyms, and the Four Seasons doesn't disappoint in that regard. The gym was really large, and it had plenty of cardio machines, weight machines, and free weights. It even had a lap pool if you're a swimmer.
And while I never got into a ping pong showdown with my wife, which I was quite looking forward to, the Four Seasons does have an activity room. The activity room had billiards, DVDs you could take back to your room, a ping pong table, a chess table, and (surprisingly) a DJ booth.
The facilities at the Four Seaons Resort Mauritius at Anahita are second to none. The grounds of the hotel are absolutely beautiful, and the service was unparalleled. I feel like there's a fine line when it comes to high quality service. If the staff overdoes it, it can lead to either your feeling awkward or sometimes annoyed (like, dude, back off), but at the Four Seasons, I always felt like they perfectly walked the line of leaving us alone, giving us our privacy, but also accomodating any request we had and going above and beyond to make sure we were enjoying ourselves.
We came back to our room one night and found two swans made of towels. We came back another night and found the bath tub filled with bubbles and rose petals. That's the kind of place this resort is. You will not be disappointed by the facilities or service.