Design, Art & Architecture
The transformed One&Only Le Saint Géran celebrates Mauritius
The iconic One&Only Le Saint Géran in Mauritius has emerged transformed, following a multi-million-dollar renovation in 2017 that has seen the entire resort completely reimagined. Redefining ultra-luxury in the Indian Ocean and beyond, the comprehensive redesign has introduced a modern, beach-inspired décor, embracing Mauritian materials, culture and art throughout the renowned resort.
Long hailed as the legendary iconic luxury retreat in Mauritius, One&Only Le Saint Géran has retained what guests have always loved - a sense of exclusive seclusion on its own private peninsula with a beachfront and calm lagoon unlike any other resort on the island. Nestled within lush tropical surroundings, the resort’s colonial-style architecture has been lovingly preserved while the interiors have received a contemporary, ultra-luxury update, incorporating stylish design references to traditional Mauritian lifestyle and architecture such as local plantation manor houses, sugar cane kilns and soft palm-thatched roofs.
As guests arrive at One&Only Le Saint Géran, soaring wooden doors open to reveal a majestic open reception with unobstructed views to the spectacular ocean. The high-ceilinged stone and wood breezeway is interspersed with vast dome-shaped open windows letting light and air flow through the entrance hall, and elegantly framing the white sand and crystal waters of the private beach beyond. Walking through the gallery, a striking starfish artwork by Dong Sculpture adorns the wall, celebrating the abundant Mauritian marine life. Floors of soft silver travertine and white washed walls echo the ripples of the seashore, reflecting light all around to create a bright and welcoming atmosphere.
Capturing the eye from the Lobby, a unique stainless-steel spherical structure inspired by Mauritian culture and history overlooks the coastline. Designed by Dong Sculpture in the form of a palm frond blowing in the wind, the sculpture symbolises the strength of the Mauritian people to adapt to their changing environment. The organic curve and pattern depicts the nature of Mauritius, while the polished mirror finish reflects the environment, sun and light, while the cool, muted interior displays the shadow cast by the sun and the enduring strength of the island and its people.
The guest rooms feature gracious living spaces in a contemporary, timeless design with muted hues of warm white marble, teak and greys, while retaining a relaxed island feel. A strong focus has been placed on showcasing the magnificent views and surroundings of the resort, with furnishings, fabrics and colour schemes reflecting the lush tropical landscapes, the vibrant turquoise Indian Ocean, and the bleached white of Mauritian sand. dsgn™ from South Africa worked closely with the resort team to ensure that the interior design and architecture of all spaces truly captured the essence of Mauritius while keeping One&Only ideals in mind. The sophisticated interiors of each guest room and suite are finished with natural materials such as timber, stone, leather and linen. Bespoke furniture and locally-crafted lithographs have been selected to resonate with the tropical Mauritian environment and provide an idyll of understated style.
All One&Only Le Saint Géran’s guest rooms feature a private balcony or terrace, marble-lined bathrooms with rain showers, and an indulgent separate bath opening up to a cleverly designed dressing space. More than 50 rooms across the resort are be available as an interconnecting options, making it an ideal retreat for families. One-bedroom suites with breathtaking views over the Indian Ocean, the white sand beach or the spectacular lagoon range in size from 110 to 150 square metres, each with a master bedroom, spacious lounge and dining room. Suites located on the ground floor extend to a generous sun-filled private wooden deck with large sofa, daybed, terrace, chairs and table. All suites feature personal butler service.
The introduction of spacious one, two and three-bedroom suites was a request from loyal guests, especially those who travel with large families. The 190 square metre two-bedroom ocean and beach-front suites include two sophisticated bedrooms, three marble-lined bathrooms and two private terraces. Guests can also luxuriate in one of the four three-bedroom suites which sprawl over 250 square metres, each with a master bedroom, a living room and a prime location directly onto the soft white beach.
One&Only is renowned for its collection of private villas offering the ultimate in space and privacy within each resort. The transformed Villa One at One&Only Le Saint Géran is the most desired address in Mauritius, a private two-bedroom secluded island home for up to four adults and two children with sensational views over the Indian Ocean. The refined residential interior exudes light and freshness, while weaving Mauritian elements into the design with bespoke furniture, locally crafted artwork, handmade ceramics and opulent natural materials including marble, silk and leathers.
Great care has been taken to select inspiring works by Mauritian artists for Villa One, connecting guests with the heritage of the island and the essence of the culture. Mauritian artist Sarah Thompson designed two abstract ceramic pieces for the Master Bedroom and the Dining Room; inspired by the underwater treasures of the Indian Ocean, she utilised a sea urchin application on white with touches of glaze and metal to celebrate the local marine life. Complementing this, local artist Helene de Senneville, turned to the tropical gardens and beauty of the natural surroundings for her work. In the Master Bedroom, a contemporary figurative acrylic and gold silver leaf painting by Helene is displayed, while the Second Bedroom features a collection of her handmade ceramic plates evoking the colourful indigenous flora and fauna. In honour of One&Only Le Saint Géran’s distinguished heritage, the living room of Villa One also houses a selection of paintings that have been collected to reflect the resort’s history.
One&Only Le Saint Géran has also launched Private Homes for guests who want to make the resort home. Secluded villas with their own pool are available to purchase with a full suite of amenities and resort services for Residents to enjoy the Mauritian life, One&Only style.
As part of the renovation, the culinary experiences as One&Only Le Saint Géran have also been completely redesigned, and exceptional new restaurants and lounges have been introduced. The design of each space showcases a remarkable attention to detail, from the bespoke artwork on the walls, to the carefully selected crockery sourced from artisan suppliers all over the globe.
PRIME Restaurant, One&Only Le Saint Géran’s celebrated steakhouse, has been transformed with an ultra-modern, butchery-inspired aesthetic and a water courtyard dining area that embraces its wild Mauritian setting. Resting upon ancient lime stone floors rescued from a 16th century French chapel, the modern, industrial-style restaurant interior features soft leather seats, Arabescato Carrara marble tops, dramatic open windows and softly glowing lanterns, all setting the scene for a dining experience dedicated to fine produce and wine.
At the much-loved La Terrasse, peaceful open-air dining pavilions with traditional wooden shutters float above glistening water features, looking out onto expansive sea vistas. The over-water walkways surrounded by cascading pools lead directly to the open kitchen at the heart of the buzzing restaurant, featuring a generous Marrone range designed especially for the resort’s culinary team. Freshly prepared dishes are served on a bespoke mix of crockery sourced from the UK, Mexico, Japan and Belgium, with glassware from La Rochere, the oldest glassworks in France, all coming together to reflect a warm and residential, yet luxurious ambiance. The vibrant blue and white Mauritian patterned floor gives the room a sweeping, welcoming feel, while the bar is crowned by a driftwood sculpture completed in vibrant locally-made tiles.
Housed in a traditional, thatched Mauritian structure on stilts, Asian-fusion restaurant Tapasake welcomes guests through oversized, weathered timber doors to a spectacular over-water setting. With sugarcane-clad mountains in the distance, guests soak up spectacular sunset views with a crafted cocktail in hand. Overhead, a dramatic lighting feature made from handwoven, re-purposed fishing baskets depicts a school of fish swimming across the dining space to the ocean. Individually laid marble mosaic tiles line the counter of the new vibrant teppan station, the stage for theatre-style preparation of fresh fusion dishes.
In the beautiful surroundings of Palm Grove Beach at the tip of the peninsula, new restaurant La Pointe is the epitome of rustic beach elegance, with feet-in-the-sand dining and traditional Mauritian thatched roof pavilions made from locally-sourced sugar cane. L’Artisan, the new artisanal bakery and specialist coffee lounge, has an uplifting colour palette and rustic, crafted furnishings for guests to enjoy light bites throughout the day. Le Carré Lounge, a newly designed space, sits above La Terrasse with an expansive terrace overlooking the Indian Ocean. Designed as a relaxing, residential haven for any time of the day, the bright, contemporary interior features comfortable chairs to sink into, scattered rugs on cool timber floors, generous bookshelves and local artwork.
The lush and tropical garden that the resort lies on has never ceased to surprise guests, and this is something that has not changed. Upon entering the gates of the resort, over 4,000 palm trees greet guests amongst the plethora of flora and fauna across the property. Guests can enjoy cool palms swaying in the gentle breeze, savour the delicious tropical scents that float across the gardens and discover hidden nooks in the shade of palms for moments of rest. The garden always has been, and continues to be, a place for meditation, disturbed only by the sounds of the splashing of ducks gliding across the water or by the greeting call of a grey heron.
All the materials used in the renovation have been chosen with care and attention. Sustainable teak wood has been used throughout the outdoor areas due to its durability against the elements, while local timber was chosen for the shutters in Le Terrace to be true to the traditional Mauritian design. Throughout the resort, sugarcane thatch from the nearby mountains has been used to create the sunshades, an effective material that lends a rustic-chic aesthetic.
For reservations or more information, please visit oneandonlyresorts.com