Trou aux Biches Beachcomber hosts one of TV's best loved doctors26/07/2022
I’m sure, like many of you, lockdown forced me to stop, to slow down and to take stock. It was a challenging time for everyone, but for us it also brought a silver lining. My partner of many years proposed and as we emerged from the pandemic, we had a wedding to plan and, of course, a honeymoon to arrange.
We are lucky enough to be well travelled and had missed our foreign holidays in 2020 and 2021.
We wanted somewhere special that would stick in our memories to celebrate our honeymoon and a friend suggested we speak to Sarah Archer, Sales Manager at Beachcomber Tours. It was simply the best recommendation. Sarah took time to listen to what we were looking for from a honeymoon before advising us and her first recommendation ticked every box!
She suggested we visit Trou Aux Biches on the northwest coast of Mauritius. The website described it as the “most romantic hotel in Mauritius” and it didn’t disappoint.
We arrived by private transfer from the airport in the south of the island and, aside from the beautiful warm climate and blue skies, we were immediately struck by the immaculately tended tropical gardens and the warm welcome from the staff. We were shown to a comfy sofa in the lobby overlooking ponds and offered a most welcome ice cold mocktail, whilst we were checked in and our bags whisked away to our room. Checking in to a hotel can be time consuming and frustrating after a long journey, but the staff at Trou Aux Biches made the process totally effortless and set the bar for the rest of our stay.
Our room was perfect, extremely spacious with inside and outside showers, a huge circular bath and plenty of wardrobe space. I don’t know about you, but even in the smartest of hotels, I so often find myself straining to find a mirror accessible from a plug socket. At Trou Aux Biches, they have thought of every minor detail. Our veranda with comfy chairs led to a private pool and on to the beach.
I have been lucky enough to travel to some amazing places, but I don’t think I have ever known such white and such soft sand. It honestly felt like walking through icing sugar.
I am told that there were over 700 guests during our stay, but somehow the resort felt cosy and personal. The staff were, without exception, delightful and attentive without being overbearing.
By Day 3, the beach staff had already clocked our routine and would welcome us with a smile, move a couple of loungers into our favourite spot and bring a bottle of iced water and two beach glasses. I was particularly impressed that the bottles looked like ordinary plastic but were, in fact, made entirely from plants. The hotel is eco-friendly throughout.
As part of my work on Embarrassing Bodies with Channel 4, I had numerous tests which showed I have a naturally slow metabolism, a full set of “fat genes” and a gut flora usually associated with obesity. I have been aware all my adult life that I gain weight easily. Holidays are a case in point. On a ten-day holiday I would normally expect to gain at least half a stone and often more. Trou Aux Biches has a fully equipped gym and a busy timetable of activities including yoga and aqua fit, which were an influence in our decision making. But, when it came to it, my gym kit stayed in the wardrobe, and we allowed ourselves proper downtime. Our daily exercise consisted of swimming in the warm azure blue sea and strolling down the beach before our evening meal.
There are six restaurants in the resort. We tried all of them – seafood, Italian, Indian, Thai and the most amazing buffet. The food was excellent and extremely healthy. Despite, enjoying the culinary delights to the full, I was pleasantly surprised to discover I had only gained 4 pounds on my return to the UK. That is, I think, a first and I am sure a reflection of the way the chefs prepared the fresh produce.
There were several desks in reception offering plenty of excursions, concierge advice and a taxi service. We took the opportunity to explore some of the local area in a taxi and one of our highlights was an early morning start to go out by boat to swim with the dolphins and giant turtles. We were alone on the boat with our driver who quickly found a pod of dolphin. He loaned us flippers and we found ourselves amid the pod. I have said we were looking for a honeymoon to give us longstanding memories – swimming in the wild with dolphins will stay with me forever. As will the sunsets. I remember sitting in the bar overlooking the Indian Ocean on our first night and taking a photograph of the sunset which, I later posted on Instagram with a simple comment … “no filters”.
As part of the honeymoon package, we were offered a choice of gifts which included a photoshoot, a special lobster meal on the beach for two and others. I opted for a massage in the spa at the hotel which is set among water and tropical greenery. My massage lasted an hour in the open air. One of the most relaxing experiences of my life!
Thank you Sarah, Thank you Trou Aux Biches and thank you Beachcomber Tours. We really did have the honeymoon of fairy tales. In the words of Arnie …. I am sure “we will be back”!