Our third visit to this beautiful island, but our first to this hotel. The title expresses our overall view of this very pretty and well kept hotel, inasmuch as whilst the many recent contributors to this site have given it 5 stars, I really am afraid we have to rate it as a 3 star experience. Let me explain....
We arrived at about 8.00am after a 13 hour flight and a 90 minute drive to be greeted very sweetly by Ursha, one of the several “front of house” customer relations team. We were given welcome cold face cloths, but not the cold drink we were expecting. We did get a cup of tea we had to ask for though, after we had been told our room would not be ready for other 6 or so hours! We were also told that we could have a shower in one of their customer amenity rooms when it came available. After two hours of sitting, waiting, and a few pleasantries with Ursha, trying to urge some progress, we eventually were able to have a shower, once we had located our cases, which had been put in a safe area behind Reception. We then had some lunch, and finally were shown to our room, without any “guided tour” which all the other guests seemed to get as a formality. My reason for noting all this palaver is that we were not kept very well informed about what was going on, and felt as if we were not really being made very welcome.
Once we got to our room, we were not particularly impressed with it. It was a bit of a box in many ways, with one small draw above the fridge unit, a small hanging wardrobe complete with safe, and a few open shelves – completely useless really for the mountain of clothes we had brought!! So - we lived out of our suit-cases! The room was kept very clean during our stay – full marks! However, the noise adjacent to block 6 that we were in was quite bad during our stay. The hotel cannot really be blamed for this though. The public beach next to the block was frequented by many noisy local youths all day long, every day and night, with beating drums (nice we thought when we first heard them) well into the late hours, and a couple of local dogs barking constantly, every night, starting about 1am and going on until 4am – as if turned on by a switch. We had constant hot water for the two weeks, except for just two occasions which were in the late afternoon when everybody was using the shower – understandable. The mini bar was not particularly well stocked – just a few bottles of the local beer, a couple of small fruit drinks, 2 bottles of water, a Mars bar and a tube of throat sweets? Strange !
Beach and Pools:
We didn’t use the beach but settled down most days by the side of one of the pools. There were plenty of sun beds available, but not as many sun umbrellas. Consequently our European friends tended to be up to their old towel tricks, even though there were notices around telling them not to! The pools were 1.3m and 0.9m deep – not conducive to proper swimming – just a paddle really when you are 6’3” tall like me. The sun beds on the beach were regimented in one long line at the back of the very small beach and VERY close together. It would have been difficult to keep in the shade under the umbrellas here because of the lack of space.
We had breakfast, lunch and dinner in the main restaurant every day, except for one time towards the end of the holiday when we tried out the a la carte restaurant. The food in the main restaurant was boring. That is a kind way of saying it was not particularly interesting, enticing or palatable, and as others have mentioned, very repetitive. My wife is not a lover of hot, spicy food, and whilst I appreciate we were in a Mauritian hotel, there could perhaps have been a better selection of international cuisine, as every day the evening meals and lunch were for the best part highly spiced and seasoned with a variety of chillies. The ladies behind the food counters did try to help out by explaining which foods were hot, hotter and hottest to my wife, but it really was a case where the selection became quite limited. Personally, I enjoyed quite a few excellent curries, but that is MY taste. Breakfasts were good – a fair selection of fried food, fruit, meats and so on, with eggs as you liked them. As for the a la carte restaurant, we had to select from the menu two nights before with one of the several ”head waiters” in the main restaurant. This seemed a bit strange at the time, but I think I might know why. We were told that the fish food on Tuesdays and Thursdays was freshly caught. Not so! I had the beef-steak for my main, cooked as I like it, but certainly not fillet as described, but more like rump. My wife had the sea-food platter as a main. It was superbly presented, with a half lobster, skewered prawns, mussels, etc., and looked extremely appetising. However, she had to leave most of the lobster meat for a start, as it was so tough and wouldn’t come easily out of its casing. The prawns, too, were tough, and a couple of the mussels had to be left. The accompanying side dish of tagliatelle was also inedible, being likened to a plate of rubber bands. We suspected that the “fresh” sea-food was, in fact, frozen, and when we complained to the chef, he admitted it was. My wife was offered another meal gratis the following night, cooked to her liking, but we declined as it was our last night, and we would be spending it with friends elsewhere. We were not offered any reduction, and coughed up the equivalent of £57 sterling for the sea-food platter in addition to the cost of my meal , starters and sweets. We learn by our mistakes!
This I would class as “low key” – fine for us, and run mainly by the 2 “Animation” guys, Danny and Dupont. Dupont in particular worked extremely hard, and seemed to know everybody after the first one or two days. He was most likeable and was a fountain of knowledge as well – a great asset to the hotel! There were the usual pedalos, snorkelling etc., available, but we were just lazy and enjoyed the relaxation by the pool and in and around the very well kept gardens.
So to sum up – we couldn’t quite make up our minds about this hotel. Some things about it were great, but many weren’t. We enjoyed our holiday, and would never let any of the “poor” points mentioned spoil it for us. This critique is made with thanks to all those of the staff who really made the holiday good for us, in particular the bar staff who were so friendly and helpful. I am sorry that I cannot rate the hotel higher.
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- Also Known As:
- Veranda Paul And Virginie Hotel & Spa
- Veranda Paul & Virginie Hotel Grand Gaube
- Veranda Paul Virginie Grand Gaube
- Paul Virginie Hotel
- Veranda Paul & Virginie Hotel & Spa Mauritius/Grand Gaube