Hotel Review: Starwood’s Grand Mauritian

Sep 3, 2011

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I’ve already posted about my flight on Air Mauritius and my experience at the Intercontinental there, so today I thought I’d share a quick gallery of photos I took at the other property I stayed at on the island, the Grand Mauritian.

The Grand Mauritian is a Starwood Luxury Collection property, just a stones throw from the Intercontinental, on the island’s northwest coast. It’s a Starwood Category 5 hotel, so SPG members can book a free night for 12,000 points, or better yet, use Starwood’s Cash & Points option to book it for 4,800 points and $90 a night.

The resort has 193 guest rooms and suites in 15 villa-style buildings. Whereas the Intercontinental was a bit more sophisticated and adult in ambiance and aimed at honeymooners, the Grand Mauritian (while still very luxe) had more guest families and kids (there’s a kids club program of activities), a daily resort schedule of activities, music by the pools and more organized activities like beach volleyball.

The restaurant choices also provided enough variety for my stay, and I ended up eating every meal on the property while I was there. There was Bar 68 for a quick casual meal (and live music in the evenings), Brezza for contemporary Italian overlooking the beach, the relaxed Reflections bar on the beach that was open during the daytime (and they host a free cocktail happy hour for Platinum members every day from 5-7pm), and the upscale Season restaurant. Most of the meal options came in buffet form, but that was okay since it was a casual way to enjoy meals.

I had booked a standard Deluxe Ocean View King room (going for about 216 euros – $306 – right now) which was spacious at 60 square meters (about 645 square feet) and included the standard all-marble floors, a balcony with table and chairs, a 42-inch flat-screen and a small desk and work area.

Since it was low season and not a busy time, and because I have Platinum SPG status, I was upgraded to a Luxury Ocean View Terrace Suite that would have cost 450 euros ($640). The suite was almost twice the size of the Ocean View King at 1,150 square feet (107 square meters), and in addition to the standard amenities, it came with an even larger balcony with sunbeds. The Presidential Suite I was in at the InterContinental had just blown my mind, so the Ocean View Suite here was not quite in the same category, but it was still pretty spectacular, and I loved the welcome gift of a polo shirt and a fruit and wine basket.

I’ll spare you the rest of the details here, but take a look at the photos I shot and then check back for my reports on some of the other experiences I had on Mauritius including hanging out with lions and cruising on a catamaran.

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