Hotel Review: LUX* Saint Gilles on Reunion Island
Words by Bindu Gopal Rao
What do you look for in a holiday? A space to relax, rest and rejuvenate? Well, if this is what you want and would like all of this on a beach front at an exotic destination, welcome to LUX* Saint Gilles, Reunion Island. An elegant beach resort with exclusive views of the coral-sheltered lagoon at L’Hermitage, the resort is set amidst lush gardens with charming Creole villas, coconut palms and Filao trees. The best part is that the resort is like an oasis – secluded and secure and a perfect place to soak in the island’s secrets. Done up in pristine white, the colour comes from the accessories and nature here.
The décor of the property is in an authentic Creole atmosphere enhanced with the latest design trends to match new standards of today’s living. The hotel has 174 Rooms and suites all of which come with a lagoon view. There are 85 superior rooms, 61 Deluxe Rooms, 8 Junior Suites and 10 Family Deluxe Rooms that are spacious, interconnected rooms on the ground floor. The rooms are furnished with Queen size beds, a bathroom with bathtub, separate shower and separate toilets, slippers, bathrobe, full length mirror, cupboard, television with satellite and DVD Player on request, a telephone with IDD, a well-stocked minibar (refilled daily), complimentary tea & coffee making facilities, complimentary drinking water (replaced daily), an expresso machine, safe, hairdryer, shaver sockets, 220-240v electric sockets and children and baby amenities and minibar (tailored for different ages). All the toiletries are made using natural ingredients and are the hotel’s own brand. There are also video games for children (on request), beach towels and free Wi-Fi access. The resort is also accessible for differently abled persons.
The resort has several immersive experiences for their guests which include some interesting ones like finding a hidden bottle that has a surprise gift for the guest who finds it. In fact there are three bottles every day that are hidden across the property and I was lucky to win two scoops of ice cream in my bottle! This apart there are tennis and volleyball courts in the gardens, table tennis, tennis, bocce ball, as well as the spacious swimming pool which is the island’s largest at 1100 m². The property has seven hectares of tropical garden and outstanding conference facilities include the seven conference rooms which can accommodate 12-180 persons. Find your inner zen with yoga in the gardens or head to the fully equipped fitness center for a robust workout. The resort also offers complimentary snorkeling and you can pay a fee for diving, big game fishing, boat trips, jet-skiing, stand up paddle and kayak with a transparent hull. And if you fancy a movie on the beach complete with popcorn and snacks in comfortable The hotel is ideally located for sightseeing trips and visits Cilaos, the volcano, Salazie, Mafate, scuba diving, helicopter rides and more can all be organized by the concierge.
Shout Out to Foodies
The hotel has a choice of three restaurants and is the only hotel on the islands that has a beach front restaurant and snack bar on the beach. La Cuisine, the main restaurant has 180 seats and serves buffets for breakfast and dinner. Weekend dinners are themed buffets and I was lucky to have tried a Creole themed buffet on one day and an Asian themed dinner the other. The choice is huge and vegetarians can rejoice as they also have a special section for vegetarian fare. Orangine, the a la carte restaurant seats 40 seats and can be visited with a compulsory prior reservation for dinner and serves some delectable delights over several courses and each dish is presented so superbly that it seems like a work of art. The beach restaurant, La Plage has 80 seats and overlooks the virgin stretch of beach here. Executive Chef Philippe Agesidame says, “we have a range of gastronomic cooking in the restaurants and our snack bar serves burgers, pizza and salad. The beach restaurant is where you can have a traditional Reunion meal. This refers to a fusion of influences like Indian, Chinese, Arab and European food. You must try our signature Rougail Saucisse which is a sausage made with tomatoes and the Cabri massale, a goat meat mixed with coriander, cumin, curry leaves and clove when you dine here.” The Le Bar is a pool bar with 130 seats that doubles up as a snack space between 12:00 and 6:30 p.m. or of you prefer coffee, head to Café LUX* to enjoy signature coffees by the hotel. True to its name, LUX* Saint Gilles is an experience like no other, in an island like no other. So what are you waiting for head to LUX* Saint Gilles for a luxury break that will refresh your body and soul.
Reach: Air Austral connects Reunion Islands from India, Australia, France, Mauritius, Madagascar, Mayotte, New Caledonia, Rodrigues, Seychelles, South Africa and Thailand.
Address: LUX* Saint Gilles, L’Hermitage, 97434 Saint-Gilles-Les-Bains, Reunion Island T +262 02 62 700 000 F +262 02 62 700 007
Tariff: Varies per the season and best deals are available on the hotel website. You can avail special discounts for honeymoon packages as well as combining visits to their other properties.