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THE VOICE OF SEYCHELLES TOURISM

In praise of the coconut

chatting with the coconut advocate

The turtles are coming... learning more about conservation

The Ashanti King of Seychelles

FR EE

King Prempeh’s time on the islands


Foreword by Sherin Naiken CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board success and Seychelles came away with several awards one of which was for best Tourism Board in the region. This makes us all very proud and it is a big boost for Seychelles’ tourism. Another happening is now on the horizon and that is the launch of the My Seychelles Experience international video competition whereby visitors to the islands will be able to upload a video of their holiday experience of Seychelles and, if they win, be treated to a once in a lifetime, super VIP holiday to the islands complete with business class air travel, VIP transfers in Seychelles and stays on North Island and in the Seychelles Four Seasons Resort. There will also be an optional cruise among the islands as well as a special surprise package courtesy of the Seychelles Tourism Board.

Today, few can be in any doubt that tourism is about visibility and the need to stay top of mind in an increasingly congested market place. For a small country like Seychelles, that can place a lot of pressure on our financial resources which, as we all know, are limited as we constantly seek innovative and cost-effective ways to boost the profile of our islands. Recently, we achieved this by our effective lobbying of the organisers of the African and Indian Ocean region World Travel Awards 2015, who elected to hold their annual WTA Gala at our very own Seychelles Kempinski Resort. The evening was a great

This exciting international competition will commence on 29th July 2015 and will run until February 2016. Precise information about the competition will soon be available on www.my-seychelles-experience.com and we are looking forward to lively participation that will, once again, assist in making the Seychelles brand resonate to the maximum.

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Beachcomber Sainte Anne Resort

1.. . . . . . . . . . . . . CEO's foreword 4.. . . . . . . . . . . . . Wellness on Sainte Anne 10. . . . . . . . . . . . Holistic Seychelles Yoga on the islands 14. . . . . . . . . . . . A spa escape 18. . . . . . . . . . . . Eden Island the prefect destination 22. . . . . . . . . . . . Jardin Du Roi The Garden of a King 26. . . . . . . . . . . . Blue Economy 28. . . . . . . . . . . . An interview with Vicky Lanza 31. . . . . . . . . . . . Stable D'Or Beau Vallon Luxury Apartments 34. . . . . . . . . . . . Calendar of events 35. . . . . . . . . . . . A chat with Sherin Naiken CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board 37. . . . . . . . . . . . Gastronomy Creole basics

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42. . . . . . . . . . . . Seychelles Last Minute a best deal service 50. . . . . . . . . . . . Prempe a King in Seychelles 54. . . . . . . . . . . . Bred ti fey The miracle plant 56. . . . . . . . . . . . Dining Discoveries where to shop and try 59. . . . . . . . . . . . The turtles are coming conservation with the Turtle Fesitval 64. . . . . . . . . . . . Priase the coconut talking with Achille Luc 71. . . . . . . . . . . . Maps of Seychelles 76. . . . . . . . . . . . Important Contacts

Sesel Sa! is a joint collaboration with STB and Paradise Promotions Ltd. Printed by ATLAS Printing Press LLC. Cover photo and above photo: Courtesy Beachcomber Sainte Anne Resort For more information with regards to advertising and editorial, please contact; Managing Editor: Ineke Camille E: ineke@seychellespublications.com Tel: +2482520937 Assistant Editor: Lynette Botha E: lynettebotha0@gmail.com Marie France Watson E: marie-france@seychellespublications.com Tel: +2482512477 Graphic Design and Layout: Olivia Michaud W: www.angelcreativedesign.com Photographer: Suzanne Verlaque E: studio@seychellespublications.com Contributors: Mawess Wirtz, Elke Telma, Mma Metsi Published by Paradise Promotions Ltd. P.O Box 1539, MahĂŠ, Seychelles

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The definition of wellness is: the state or condition of being in good physical and mental health. If both your body and mind are in need of time out on an idyllicallylocated private island, read on… By Lynette Botha

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The largest of six islands that make up the Saint Anne Marine Park, Sainte Anne Island is a tropical paradise in every sense of the word. A very short boat ride from the main island of Mahé, Beachcomber Sainte Anne Resort and Spa is set on 22 hectares of private island, surrounded by Moyenne and Cerf Islands in close proximity.


There are many aspects that make this the perfect wellness destination in the Seychelles; not least the fact that it is so close to Mahé and that transfer to the island is included in your accommodation rate (which is not true for many other private island resorts). Added to this is the offering of three exquisite beaches, two of them protected all year round from prevailing winds, and the idyllic setting within a marine park, surrounded by natural flora and fauna and views that cannot be seen from anywhere else in the archipelago. And then, of course, the fact that it is home to the only Clarins Spa in the Seychelles cements its status as a sanctuary for those in need of some R&R.

Accommodation

You’d never say there were 87 villas residing on this property thanks to the spaciousness of the resort. Each villa, ranging from 150 to 840 square meters, offers privacy and an outside lounge area to relax in – the perfect spot to zone out and enjoy the natural sounds of birdsong and swaying palms. Rooms are modern but minimally decorated, offering supreme comfort first and foremost. Beds are large and comfy and the bathrooms are spacious, with a roomy bath, as well as indoor and outdoor showers. The more opulent villas include an additional living room, private pool and enclosed terrace, for complete seclusion and solitude.

Dining

As is expected from a five-star resort, dining is top priority at Sainte Anne. With four diverse restaurants to choose from, there is definitely something for every palate and mood. L’Abondance is the resort’s main restaurant, which is open daily for breakfast, lunch and supper and offers international cuisine. Le Mont Fleuri offers a luxury, one-ofa-kind culinary experience with Mediterranean influence and flair. Le Robinson is a beach restaurant, cocooned by granite rocks and trees, set on the water’s edge. The menu at Le Takamaka includes fresh salads, sandwiches and paninis, but this intimate, 25-seater beach restaurant is only open for lunch from November through to April due to it’s location that can be affected by the weather.

Activities

There is no shortage of activities for those who like to get out and active and explore all that a place has to offer. For the fitness fanatics the sports centre offers top-of-the-range equipment and facilities, including power plate, machine and weight training, cardio training,

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yoga, stretching, Hammam and a sauna. If you prefer to get your pulse racing outdoors there are many nature walks to embark on – perfectly showcasing the idyllic environment, or if you prefer to pedal, take a bicycle tour of the surrounds. Additionally there is a tennis court, beach volleyball, pool tables and tennis volley. To really enjoy Sainte Anne for all its worth and truly connect with nature, one must venture into the ocean. Located at the heart of the most beautiful marine park in the Indian Ocean region and declared a protected environment since 1973, here is where you will find myriad fish, sea anemones and colourful coral, without having to search too hard. If it’s the right season, you may even be able to spot turtles and stingrays. Head into the water with a kayak, in a pedal boat or on a SUP. Go for a snorkel or hop on board the boat for the daily trip to Moyenne Island.

Wellness & Spa

A castaway-esque island sanctuary is one way to sum up the spa. Surrounded by natural granitic rocks, wood and stone features and natural colours inspired by the surrounds, you immediately feel at peace when you step in. The spa is divided into three main sections, comprising of the pool area and wooden deck, complete with loungers, to unwind pre- or post-treatment. On one side of the pool is an area

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Additonal Resort Services & Facilities Kids club (for children aged 3 to 12) Library DVD player in all rooms Complimentary access to WIFI throughout the resort Baby-sitter (24-hour notice) Infirmary (doctor on request) Boutique Excursions Helicopter transfers and excursions Band or musicians six evenings a week Conference room

dedicated to beauty treatments and on the other, the massage section. Treatments range from facials, oriental and traditional massages and reflexology to an array of beauty offerings. Clarins, the world-renowned botanical beauty rand, is the official partner of all Beachcomber’s spas (in Mauritius and Seychelles). Locations like this are hard to come by; the surroundings of lush vegetation make it at true tropical oasis. Full facilities of the spa include five single massage cabins, two double massage cabins, an ayurvedic cabin, a balneotherapy cabin, two hammams, two saunas, a hairdresser and beauty salon and a yoga pavilion. As the J Stanford quote goes, “health is a state of body. Wellness is a state of being”. And both are equally important. When considering your next holiday to the Seychelles, Beachcomber Sainte Anne Resort and Spa should be your destination of choice.

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Contact details: Beachcomber Sainte Anne Call: +248 429 20 00 Â / E-mail: sainteanne@bchot.com www.sainteanne-island.com

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© Frog974 Photographies

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Holistic Seychelles Take a deep breath and realign yourself – mind, body and spirit – in paradise By Nathalie Hodgson

Yoga means ‘union’, a metaphor for the connection between the mind, body and spirit. Many aspects of this ancient practise aim to master how to be one with the moment, with nature and the universe. Practising any holistic therapy in natural surrounds adds plays to the inherent harmony amplifying you experiences and Seychelles is the perfect environment to do so. As you immerse yourself in its raw

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beauty, you are able to discover more easily how to harness your inner energy either through yoga or a variety of therapeutic practises that are offered on the islands and we explore how. As soon as you step off onto the hot Mahe Airport tarmac, you are greeted with the Morne Seychelloise Mountains. Formidable behemoths of green and grey, we lift our gaze to capture the situation and experience the intensity of nature enveloping our senses and bringing out our primitive self. No matter where you are or what you are doing on the

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islands, the natural environment surrounds you, forcing you to embrace it. With its endless open spaces and boundless colour, you are slowly taken further away from your everyday routine thoughts and habits. The concrete jungle dissolves into just jungle, shoreline, sea and horizon.

THE GREEN HEALTH PROGRAM

‘People are drawn to nature and yoga alike, as both can offer something profound that speaks to some need within us all’ explains Robin Wetlands Manager and


yoga practitioner of The Green Health Program. ‘Five years ago we started Green Yoga, a fusion of yoga and nature to encourage a deeper connection with ourselves, others and the natural world we live in. The classes are given in the peaceful nature reserve, at The Sanctuary in Roche Caiman on Mahe, with morning and evening classes, besides Sundays. They also offer therapeutic gardening with organic produce for sale, bespoke corporate team building activities around nature and educational tours and workshops year round. ‘We have reached the general public, including tourists, school groups, orphans, psychiatric patients, rehabilitation clients with the Green Health Program’ Robin continues. ‘We refined altering not only the practice but sometimes groups sizes, length and style ensuring the underpinning theme of connecting with nature and following an accepting, compassionate attitude to find our own working edge exists within every session’.  

LEADERS IN YOGA - HIGH COMMISSION OF INDIA

With the declaration of 21st of June as the International Day of Yoga (IYD), by the United Nation this year, the spreading of yoga worldwide has gained even more global momentum. ‘Yoga keeps you physically and mentally fit; relieves stress and fatigue but is also more importantly seen as a key instrument of global peace and unity’ says S.S. Sundram Press Attaché, for the High Commission of India. ‘As one strives to attain purification of the mind, body and soul, you journey through inner peace which reflects into your outward environment’ he explains. The Vivekananda Yoga Club of the Indian High Commission, have offered yoga classes and

workshops since 2003 and this year have initiated the IYD event in collaboration with other local yoga institutions of Seychelles. ‘We are bringing over a professional Yoga expert for a demonstration, and will also offer classes that day for anyone who wants to join’, S.S. Sundram continues. ‘This event will be held annually to increase awareness of the benefits of yoga and we will also continue periodic workshops which will be open to all. We all need to consider healthier lifestyles in this stressful modern world’.

NEWCOMERS: SEYLLBEING

Monica Schmidiger and Ernst Zwicky from Switzerland started Seyllbeing in 2013, a holistic freelance service. After a short holiday stay they instantly knew that Seychelles was the ideal place for their business. Monica, a Breath and Body Therapist instructs Yin Yoga, Thai massage and Shiatsu and Ernst is an Ayurveda practitioner. They are both busy offering techniques and classes for the wellbeing of anyone on the islands. ‘Nature holds a vast capacity for promoting healing, reconnection, and reawakening to the beauty in and around us and that is why we moved to Seychelles to offer our healing programs here’, Monica continues. “By putting your body into the shape of a tree or a stretching cat, by exploring the graceful wingspan of a bird, by breathing with the white wash straight from the ocean waves, you evoke a sense of harmony, timelessness, and connection to the universe,” says Monika ‘this is why just being in natural surrounds of Seychelles offers huge healing benefits, coupled with wellness treatments you are fully on your way to discovery and recovery’.  

FIVE STAR HOTEL YOGA

Most of the five star resorts in Seychelles also offer some form of yoga on demand for clients, which is performed by local practitioners

The professional Indian Hatha Yoga instructor at Ephelia, provides private classes that can be conducted anywhere from the villas to the beach or any open space they choose, perfect for beginners. on Mahe, Praslin and La Digue. ‘Pairing up yoga and nature can be an incredible experience, most tourists are already embracing the outdoors and are eager to try out something new or their usual routine in the beautiful grounds of the hotel’ states Anung Ayu, Spa Manager of Constance Ephelia Resort. ‘When the classroom is outdoors, free of the mirrors and windows and designer clothes, the open space expands your practise and your mind as you are freer to try new things’. The professional Indian Hatha Yoga instructor at Ephelia, provides private classes that can be conducted anywhere from the villas, beach or any open space they choose, prefect for beginners.

MEDITATION The Brahma Kumaris Meditation Centre of Seychelles teaches the form of yoga known as the Raja Yoga. This is a form of meditative yoga that involves the mental union with the spiritual aspects of life, so as to gain insight into your true being. ‘This yoga is an empowering tool which everyone should try. And with this knowledge you gain the power to live a fuller life, that means not just from your physical self’ says Francis Musyoki. The centre holds

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classes, workshops and seminars on yoga and meditation, which are open to all and free of charge (with donations greatly accepted). ‘We are open to all people who are liberal and willing to expand their consciousness irrespective of their background or experience’ continues Francis. After years of study at the Centre in Nairobi, Francis started teaching in 2005 and moved to the Seychelles Centre in 2010. ‘People come and realise that it is more than just a physical exercise and they start connecting with nature, the environment and then with their true self-virtues, this is a big thing. It is our main goal, to help people with this shift and we also hope to expand to Praslin and La Digue in the near future’, Francis concluded.

THE RESONATE WELLNESS CENTRE

The Station is a living homeopathy wellness centre, Hotel Retreat and holistic shop nestled in the mountains of Sans Souci. They offer homeopathy consultations, yoga classes programs and workshops all focused learning how to enrich your life with abundance, joy and happiness. ‘I believe that Seychelles must be one of the most conducive spots on earth to soak up healing energy’ commented Jenny Gilbert, founder and owner of The Station, Sans Souci Mahe. ‘With yin (sea) and yang (sky) in perfect balance, one simply knows that a state of grace is more easily accessible here. Just being in this healing space facilitates a return to who we know we are and encourages us to want to shift. An invaluable gift for sure’. The recently appointed Managing Homeopath and Resident Yoga Therapist, Jyotsna Gundecha mentioned that ‘Yoga has been practised by many to achieve well-toned and graceful bodies and to maintain good health. With a growing number of population suffering from lifestyle disorders, there has been continued research over the efficacy of yoga in the management of these non-

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communicable diseases’. The Resonate Wellness Centre at The Station offer exclusive yoga therapy sessions on a need basis personally designed after a thorough consultation. The practices taught, are safe and focused on making the patient self-reliant, so that he/she can continue the practices independently after a few sessions of supervised practice. Jyo added that, ‘at the International Yoga Day, this year, we will hold a Yogic sleep or the Yoga Nidra session, which is a relaxation technique wherein you learn how to withdrawal the senses and turning your awareness inward. It is an effective technique in stress management as well as personality development’. There is no entry free but prior registration is required.

References:

The core mission of the Seychelles Yoga Association is to promote yoga throughout all the islands so that the general public is more aware of its benefits. Operational since 2012, it has now grown to over 40 members, with 20 or so that are non- regulars. ‘Yoga is not a religion, it is a way of life’ says yoga instructor Steve Thelermont. The teachers are trained by the affiliate Indian Yoga expert that travels to Seychelles annually to train the general public and teacher trainings, in collaboration with the National Sports Council. They offer Hatha Yoga classes of Vinyasa flow, BKS Iyengar Yoga and Sivananda Yoga. They are held at the Yatch Club on Mahe on Mondays through to Thursday afternoons and is open to the public after a registration fee payment. Our lives are intrinsically connected to nature, and being conscious of that relationship

Brahma Kumaris Meditation Centre/ Raja Yoga Association Tel: 2534314 Email: mahe@sc.brahmakumaris. org www.brahmakumaris.org

SEYCHELLES YOGA ASSOCIATION

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Seychelles Yoga Association Email: yogaseychelles@gmail.com Ephelia Resort Tel: 4395 133 Email: spamgr@epheliaresort.com www.epheliaresort.com      High Commission of India Tel: +248-461 03 01/02 Seyllbeing Email: info@seyllbeing.com Tel: +248 258 42 36 www.Brahma Kumaris Meditation Centre Raja Yoga Association Email: valseth14@gmail.com The Station Tel: + 248 4224203 Email: reservations@ thestationseychelles.com or visit www.thestationseychelles.com

General information: www.facebook.com/ seychellesyoga

is an important acknowledgement of what it means to be human. Practising any form of exercise in nature is therapeutic and even more so in the pure, natural environment of The Seychelles Islands. Benefit from the healing powers of yoga and nature today. We hope to see you soon.


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Time for a spa escape?

Constance Ephelia Spa

Our lives are busier than ever before. We are connected 24 / 7 to our computers, laptops and mobile phones. We are always available, always on the go and constantly bombarded with information. Wellness is often last on the list of priorities… until we burn out! Put relaxation, health and your wellness back on the agenda by booking your stay in the Seychelles at one of these top resorts that offer myriad holistic treatments in some of the most secluded, serene and exclusive locations in the world. By Lynette Botha Constance Ephelia Hotel & Spa

As the largest spa in the Indian Ocean, if you’re looking for the full pampering experience, Constance Ephelia is the place to head. With its own spa village and pavilion, it is a true oasis of calm and serenity. Offering a combination of sophisticated therapies, using natural ingredients and customised programmes, whatever your wellness need, there is a solution. It is also the location of the only Shiseido Spa on the island. The extensive spa facilities include a dry heat sauna, a steam room, thermal pool, Jacuzzi, still pool, Kneipp foot path, reflective pool and a yoga pavilion, all set amongst the most lush tropical landscape. After your treatments, while away your chill time in the pool or on a sun lounger with a comforting herbal tea and watch fruit bats circle above your head. There is also a fully-equipped fitness centre and customised wellness programmes to assist with everything from weightloss and detox to learning about nutrition and practicing yoga. Children from six to 16 have their own spa facilities to help them relax and feel pampered too. Must-try treatment: The Signature U-experience Massage is a massage like no other, customized

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uniquely to the requirements of your body and muscles. The therapist will select techniques intuitively as required by your muscles and spend focused time on your areas of tension. Web: www.constancehotels.com/ephelia  

Hilton Labriz Resort & Spa Silhouette Island

Right at the end of the resort, far away from the hub of the pool and dining areas is Silhouette Spa at Hilton. Completely secluded and private, and built around the natural rock structures, you feel your stresses melt away instantly. From a soothing steam room to the chilly but refreshing plunge pool, there’s enough to experience to keep you at the spa all day (trust me, you’ll want to stay!). Additional facilities include a sauna, Jacuzzi and a refreshment center, to relax and replenish before or after your treatments. The spa offers a wide variety of experiences designed to enhance your island holiday – whether you’re after relaxation or rejuvenation – or you just want to feel good – the therapists will suggest the best treatments suited to your needs. Traditional yoga is also available at the Silhouette Spa, based on the principles of


Hatha teachings; it is a pure and disciplined practice. The gentle sound of the wind rustling tropical leaves, birdsong and rolling waves will further enhance your experience. The spa is currently nominated for a World Spa Award 2015 – watch this space. Must-try treatment: A customized Li’tya Beauty Treatment, to solve any beauty concerns – from a dehydrated complexion to pigmentation or ageing skin. Web: www.hiltonseychelleslabriz.com

Desroches Island

It’s no surprise that the Escape Spa at Desroches Island was a finalist in the world luxury spa awards 2015. As one of the most secluded islands in the world, far away from the hustle and bustle of the world today, this oasis is quite truly an escape from reality. Inspired by the natural surroundings and the healing powers of the ocean, the spa was designed with stylish simplicity, incorporating natural elements. Using a combination of high quality products, natural oils and expertly selected ingredients, Escape Spa’s signature treatments are 100% unique.  At this spa you do not merely have a therapist, but rather what they like to call a ‘Spa Angel’, who is there to attend to your every wellness need. Ayurvedic treatments as well as yoga, meditation and breathing techiniques give a nod to their roots in the east and are a great additional experience to book to enhance any other spa treatments. Spa treatments and yoga lessons can be enjoyed at the spa, the privacy of your villa or on the idyllic white san beach, while the waves lap gently alongside you. Let the kids enjoy some downtime too with a Little Islander spa experience. Ready to book yet? 

Shell escape at Desroches

Must-try treatment: The 3-day journey is 300 minutes of pure bliss spread out over three days and includes everything from exfoliation and massage to a facial and mani and pedi. You’ll leave the island feeling 100% better than when you arrived! Web: www.desroches-island.com

Fregate Island Private

There’s a reason celebrities like Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Elizabeth Hurley and countless others head to Fregate Island when they need to escape from their frenetic lives and enjoy downtime. And the Rock Spa is most definitely one of the best-located spas in the world. Where else would you experience giant Aldabra tortoises roaming freely around you while you relax and breathe in the wonderful ocean air? Surrounded by dramatic granite rock formations, hence the name, the Rock Spa offers a diverse range of healing and relaxing therapies, fitness training and yoga, as well as an air-conditioned gym that is available complimentary to all guests. The products used in the spa are all made with natural ingredients grown on Fregate Island, further confirming that these treatments are unlike any you can experience elsewhere. Let your mind, body and soul be brought back to equilibrium while surrounded by Banyan trees, flowing waterfalls and freshwater pools at this bucketlist destination. Must-try treatment: a Creole facial, using natural ingredients from the tropical Island Garden, which includes cleansing, exfoliation, mask, toning and a face massage. Web: www.fregate.com

Banyan Tree Hotel & Spa

With a string of spa awards in recent years, it’s no surprise that Banyan Tree Seychelles is one of the top resorts for wellness in the archipelago. Nestled in the lush hillside and high above one of the more popular beaches in the Seychelles, Anse Intendance, the spa offers the ultimate hideaway to relax and rejuvenate. You can be sure you are getting the most highly-trained therapists thanks to the Banyan Tree Spa Academy in Phuket, a dedicated facility set up to train all therapists to ensure high quality service and consistency, no matter which Banyan Tree property you holiday at in the world. Rather impressive! Indulge in a range of unique treatments, from Korean Rain Mist Therapy and Ayurvedic Treatment packages to a hair spa. If you’re visiting with a partner, treat yourselves to a romantic couple’s treatment package and leave feeling relaxed, serene and very loved up. Must-try treatment: Javanese Lulur Indonesian Tradition treatment package, a therapy that has been practiced in the palace of Central Java since the 17th century. The 150-minute indulgence includes a massage, scrub, yoghurt splash, avocado conditioner and a  flower bath. Web: www.banyantree.com

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Denis Private Island

Floral Bath at Banyan Tree Seychelles

Desroches Luxury Bath

This coral island offers 375 acres of tropical surroundings; dense, green vegetation, unspoiled beaches and the warmest, clearest waters. While the private island resort does not have its own spa as such, treatments are offered in all villas or at the dedicated massage salas in the courtyards each of the cottages. Most other resorts charge extra to enjoy a treatment in the privacy of your own suite or tropical garden, as it’s an indulgent experience all on its own, making this a unique offering. Coupled with this is the use of all natural products in treatments and therapies, including island produced coconut oil. All treatments are inspired by age-old wellness therapies, using Seychellois, Indian and Swiss techniques. Must-try treatment: A signature island massage enjoyed on the beachfront with nothing but the ocean and sky surrounding you. Web: www.denisisland.com

Four Seasons Resort Seychelles

Raffles Praslin Hotel & Spa Taking inspiration from the pearl, which is found in abundance in the local waters, Raffles Spa is a haven of tranquility and opulence. There are 13 treatment pavilions, each with their own exquisite view of azure ocean, tropical gardens and dramatic granite boulders. Exclusive to Raffles in Seychelles are two spa suites, each fitted with steam showers, Japanese soaking tubs, and observation decks where visitors can take in the idyllic surrounds in complete privacy. There is also a lounge and tea room overlooking the ocean to relax in, a fitness studio, steam room, sauna, whirlpools and experience showers, an outdoor lounge with soaking pool, an indoor movement pavilion, a beauty salon and a spa boutique, making it one of the most impressive wellness spaces in the archipelago. Yoga and meditation classes, as well as exclusive treatments – like a massage on the deck of a yacht – make the spa’s offerings all the more impressive and aspirational. Must-try treatment: The Pure Pear Treatment, which starts with an exfoliation using therapeutic-grade pearl powder and soothing essences of organic ylang-ylang and bergamot, followed by a wrap and rehydrating body mask, a sea-derived eye mask, and a relaxing face, scalp and foot massage. Web: www.raffles.com   16

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With undoubtedly one of the most exquisite views in all of Mahé, the hilltop location of the Four Seasons Spa is unmatched in the Seychelles. Cocooned by lush greenery and with views out over the pristine waters of Petite Anse, your breathe will be taken away upon entering the spa. With a wide range of beauty and wellness offerings – from signature rituals and facial and body treatments to signature bath rituals and a night spa menu – there is something to make everyone feel right as rain (including the kiddies who can enjoy the Kids’ Spa). Private yoga sessions can be arranged and personalised to suit all levels, from introductory exploration to advanced practice, starting with a brisk walk and including Hatha postures on a stand up paddleboard (SUP). Must-try treatment: The Vaishaly Experience, exclusive to the resort, is a unique treatment that incorporates massage and healing craniosacral therapy techniques, focusing on the neck, shoulders, scalp and face to gently release tension, banish stress and restore balance. Web: www.fourseasons.com Constance Ephelia pool


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Eden Island A Perfect Island Destination

A manmade paradise for living, working and playing Among the many islands in Seychelles, Eden Island graces the east coast shoreline with an enticing array of upmarket residences and amenities. This 56ha manmade luxury marina property development has over 40ha of prime residential land and 16ha of private waterways. An exclusive private island lifestyle that appeals to the sophisticated buyer looking for excellent investment value, Eden Island has three product offerings available. On offer are spacious apartments, deluxe maisons and top of the range villas, which are the epitome of opulence and sophistication, all with ocean frontage.

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Each home on Eden Island is sold on freehold title and offers owners the option to apply for Seychelles residency. A broad range of recreational facilities is also on offer such as a fitness centre, tennis court, swimming pools and 4 private beaches. Each home comes with its own mooring for a boat, allowing you the opportunity to leisurely spend your days exploring the neighbouring islands. Because motor vehicles aren’t allowed in the residential area, electronically powered buggies come standard with every home, with a private bay for parking and charging. There is a separate, secure parking garage for residents who own cars. Eden Island is fast becoming an all-in-one destination within the island destination of Seychelles. With

a world-class shopping complex “Eden Plaza” and a tech-savvy business hotel “Eden Bleu” on your doorstep – there is no need to travel far. Amongst all of this, is a range of restaurants and bars serving international cuisine, an exquisite spa with a dramatic mountainous backdrop and a commercial marina with an array of charter offerings.  If its diving, snorkelling, fishing, sailing or day tripping you are after – there are people just waiting to whisk you away out into the Indian Ocean. Now is the time to invest in this idyllic lifestyle with 87% of units already been sold and currently only 5 villas left for sale. Eden Island have recently launched a brand new block of one-bedroom apartments targeting the rental market. These

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apartments are the perfect product for renting out on a short-term basis. Whether it’s a lifestyle or investment that you are looking for, or your next travel destination – Eden Island definitely ticks all the boxes. Join the 33 different nationalities who have already become homeowners and own your piece of paradise.

Exclusively marketed by Christopher Nel +248 252 7575 and Sandra Colas +248 252 7715  

Facts: Prices start at

$ 450 000 for an Apartment $ 1,300 000 for a Maison $ 2, 695 000 for a Villa The island is centrally located between the international airport and the town of Victoria. Eden Island provides a perfect base for island hopping, fishing, snorkelling, diving, sailing and more. Daily flights into Seychelles with Air Seychelles and Emirates Seychelles experiences an all-round temperate climate with the yearly average temperature of 28°c, making it a perfect destination throughout the year.

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We have a winner! given to me by Reverend Jonathan Clayton. It focuses on supporting children whose parents are convicts. The reverend told me that most of the crimes in local society are a result of children not having parental guidance and a lot of the time this is because the children’s parents are in prison. For three months Father Brian Volcere also helped me with this project; when we went to meet the children and their parents in prison he urged me to be strong and face the reality. I’ve noticed since the start of my project that all these children are deeply hurt and feel like they are lacking many things in comparison to their peers. I’ve already asked for authorization from the Ministry of Home Affairs to start this project and there is a place where we hope to build a playground where the parents can meet and spend time with their children. The next step is to look for sponsors – both locally and abroad. Personally I think my project can make an impact in reducing the amount of crime that is prevalent in our country. Miss Seychelles is a project under the Seychelles Tourism Board; how do you plan to promote the Seychelles and be involved in the tourism industry during the coming year? I am looking forward to attending all the Seychelles Tourism Industry workshops, trade fairs and forums. I will also be a Meet the new Miss Seychelles 2015 representative for the local tourism industry By Lynette Botha here and look forward to promoting this   amazing destination. Relaunched in 2012, after four year’s absence from Seychelles’   local events calendar, the Miss Seychelles pageant goes from Next up is the Miss World contest; how are strength to strength annually. In May this year, following a grand you preparing for that? evening at Constance Ephelia Resort & Spa, Linne Kerry Freminot, I am looking very forward to partaking in this 21, was crowned Miss Seychelles 2015. international event. I will be working hard   on my ‘Beauty with a Purpose’, as I feel it is We caught up with her to answer a few Q&As… a great and worthwhile project and it can   help me make it to the finals of Miss World. What made you enter Miss Seychelles… Another world 2015? I also practice karate, which I displayed in I remember telling my parents from a very young age already the talent show at Miss Seychelles. I’ve been that I wanted to participate in Miss Seychelles. Through their practicing Taekwondo for three years now, so encouragement, as well as the support of my boyfriend, Gervais will continuing to refine my skill. In addition Dubignon, I decided to enter. More than just the pageant, I felt to this, the Seychelles Tourism Board is that it was an opportunity to learn more about my beautiful providing me with staff who will groom me country too and to boost my self-confidence. and ensure I am ready for this big event.     What did you choose to focus on for your social The 65th Miss World pageant will be held responsibility project? on 19 December 2015 at the Crown of My project, entitled ‘The Children Restoration Project’, was Beauty Theatre in Sanya, China.   JULY - SEP 2015 ISSUE NO. 7 | SESEL SA!

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Discover

Seychelles Le Jardin du Roi By Lynette Botha Sugar, spice and all things nice – a day trip to these gardens are a must

High up above beautiful Anse Royale sits Le Jardin du Roi Spice Garden. As a visitor to Mahé it is the perfect outing for a day trip. Start off by wandering around the well-maintained exotic gardens, do some curios shopping and browsing in the one-room museum, before settling down for a delicious lunch, with dishes that incorporate many of the spices and plants growing on the property.   While there is a plethora of tropical fruit and vegetable trees, as well as other plants to view and marvel at, the garden’s main appeal is of course all the spices it is home to. Spices played a pivotal role in the Seychelles economy years back, and were an essential part of the trade. It was Pierre Poivre, the French spice entrepreneur, who Seychelles owes for the introduction and discovery of all these spices – and well this is not the original home of his spice plantation, it’s a close replica in terms of all the variety on offer. From vanilla

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and citronella to cinnamon, clove and nutmeg, as well as other endemic plants and spices, there are so many new smells and flavours to discover on the self-guided walk around the lush, 35-hectare area. Another drawcard of the gardens is that it is the only place, other than the Vallée de Mai on Praslin and the National Botanical Gardens on Mahé, where you can see the protected male and female Coco de Mer palms growing in their natural habitat. The Coco de Mer nut or seed, takes up to three years to germinate, a further seven years to mature and up to 25 years before it bears fruit. It only reaches it’s full size at around 200 years. The male trees can grow as tall as 30 metres, while the female trees reach between 20 – 24 metres. This makes these amazing trees a real sight to behold. The Coco de Mer nut is highly protected by the law in Seychelles and can only be purchased through strict guidelines.   Further to educating yourself on the plants, spices and fruit and vegetable trees of the Seychelles, enjoy true Creole cuisine at the garden’s restaurant, which has beautiful views down to the Anse Royale beachfront. The restaurant is popular and can get very busy, especially on a Sunday, so it’s best to book in advance.   Le Jardin du Roi is located on the East Coast of Mahé, at Enfoncement Anse Royale. Call: +248 4371313 for further information or to book a table at the restaurant. Entrance fee is SR110 per adult and SR55 per child. Open from 10am to 5pm daily. 

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Seychelles Lazare Souvenir, Museum and Gallery By Lynette Botha In the heart of Baie Lazare lies a quirky place full of history and heart Joseph Larue owner and curator of Lazare Souvenir, Museum and Gallery in Baie Lazare has been collecting things his whole life. And when stepping in to this hidden treasure trove and spotting all the antique trinkets from the past, you can see it’s his passion. While this spot has only been open for around nine months, the museum was previously located in Victoria, called Yves Souvenir Cachée, where it had been for the last 15 years. There are fascinating things Joseph has collected over the years – from old spectacles, gramophones and typewriters to records, coins and even an old electricity receipt dating decades back with a monthly total so little, you’d choke comparing it to the bills of today. Joseph finds his treasures all over; from people who contact him to let him know there are pieces they no longer want, to scrounging around the local dumps and finding bits and pieces on his travels.

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Photos by Suzanne Verlaque

Discover


Every year since 2003, Joseph has visited the UK at least once; unlike many locals who mainly travel abroad to shop and enjoy the finer things in life, he loves to visit other places in order to experience their

There are fascinating things he has collected over the years – from old spectacles, gramophones and typewriters to records, coins and even an old electricity receipt dating decades back culture and history. Of all the places he’s travelled to he says that the museums and antique stores that he visited in the UK and South Africa have had the biggest influence on how he curates things and have further inspired him to keep hunting for souvenirs and artifacts to display. There is no cover fee to visit the museum, and Joseph says there never will be. He is of course grateful for any donations and says he often receives between SR25 – SR100 from people who visit, as they are so impressed with how he has put the place together and the historic gems he’s managed to salvage. Besides the artifacts, Joseph also has local art adorning all the

walls that is for sale, there is local handmade jewelry and beaded items, crocheted hammocks and other bits and bobs also on sale. You’ll find the museum just past the police station in Baie Lazare; you can’t miss it with it’s colourful wooden panels on the outside walls and a big antique bicycle with a wooden board attached, proudly proclaiming “Welcome”. A spot not to be missed. Open Monday to Saturday, from 9am – 4pm; call +248 432 4099 for more information

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Feeling What exactly is a “Blue Economy” and what does it mean for the Seychelles?

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In 1962, John F Kennedy made a curious observation about the relationship between humans and the ocean. “ …It is an interesting biological fact that all of us have in our veins, the exact same percentage of salt in our blood, that exists in the ocean, and therefore we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea – whether it is to sail or to watch it – we are going back from whence we came…” For the Seychelles and the Seychellois people, the truth in this statement lays deeply rooted within the foundations of our heritage. The oceans have and always will be fundamental to our existence. Over the last three years, many Small Island Developing States (SIDS) have embraced the emerging concept of the Blue Economy as a mechanism to realise sustainable growth based around an ocean-economy. The term was first coined by SIDS and other coastal countries during the 2012 Rio +20 United Nations (UN) Conference on Sustainable Development in recognition of the need to amplify the enormous economic potential of oceans and seas, while preserving them. Since then, it has emerged as a key component of a new global dialogue about the role of the oceans in sustainable development. Claiming a vast Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of 1.37 million Km2, the second largest in Africa, the government is eager to maximise the full potential of Seychelles’ oceanic territory by applying the Blue Economy concept as the foundation for economic diversification and growth within the islands. Yet, the question that is often asked is what exactly constitutes a Blue Economy? While there is no universally accepted definition for the Blue Economy, for Seychelles the notion of the Blue Economy refers to the following: those economic activities that directly or indirectly take place in the ocean and coastal areas, use outputs from the ocean, and put goods and services into ocean’s activities and the contribution of those activities to economic growth, social, cultural and environmental wellbeing. The scope of its activities therefore includes: Activities that explore and develop ocean resources; Activities that use ocean and coastal space; Activities that protect the ocean environment; Activities that use ocean products as a main input; and Activities that provide goods and services to support ocean activities. The concept of the Blue Economy is not new to Seychelles. Seychelles has benefitted from its ocean resources for more than 200 years with its development of fisheries, its reliance on international and domestic shipping to support trade, its position as a global leader in marine conservation and its tourism

industry that has developed tremendously over the past three decades. So, why a Blue Economy? How does it add value to what is already been done? It is often said that work is best achieved when each component works together in synergy. The core principle encompassed within a Blue Economy is just that, the idea that all components coming together to support the ultimate goal of sustainable development for the Seychellois people and future generations. By conceptualising the ocean as a development space where spatial planning integrates conservation, sustainable use, resource extraction, sustainable energy production and transport, the Blue Economy offers an alternative economic approach, which is guided by environmental principles. It challenges the status quo where oceans have been viewed as a means of free resource and an unlimited sink for the disposal of waste and shifts the focus to where oceanvalued services are included in decision-making and where the benefits are shared more equitably for all Seychellois. The Blue Economy is fundamentally about social inclusion. It is founded on the belief that real, tangible, effective results may only be achieved if an entire community is involved and works together. Thus, through the inception of the Seychelles Blue Economy in collaboration with the Commonwealth Secretariat, the Seychellois will be presented with myriad opportunities, through employment, investment opportunities and academic and skilled training programs, all of which will undeniably result in a much improved standard of living for our people. At the National Stakeholder Consultation Forum on the Blue Economy held last year (9-10 December 2014), President James Michel reminded us that “the Blue Economy is not just a space for the creation of socio-economic opportunities but also a powerful means to further foster the nation’s unity, in all of its diversity, through its spin-offs, its activities and benefits…. This dialogue on the Blue Economy is not just for one generation. It concerns us all. It concerns our parents and grandparents. It concerns our children. The sea has always been a source of livelihood for the Seychellois. The Blue Economy, we are all convinced, can increase substantially the opportunities from it. The Blue Economy we are aiming for is about participation, the creation of new opportunities and social justice. Every Seychellois has a stake in it.” For more information email psbe@finance.gov.sc or visit www.sfa.sc

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Vicky Lanza a tourism force to be reckoned with

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A stalwart of Seychelles’ travel landscape, Nathalie Hodgson takes a trip down memory lane with Madame BA At the age of seventeen, she sailed away to England on the HMS Karanja to attend college. She returned two years later with diplomas in-hand, ready to start her tourism career. Known to many of those in the hospitality industry as the ‘Madame BA”, Vicky Lanza was a part of the pioneering team that contributed and witnessed the significant journey of tourism in Seychelles. Well known throughout the Indian Ocean for her infectious bubbly personality, endless energy, but mostly recognized for her dedication. Vicky shares with Sesel Sa! some of the adventures that came with the 35 years of her career and some insight for those working in the industry today.

Photo by Suzanne Verlaque


We were a family in tourism, everyone helping each other, hotels or tour operators, when the chips were down and that happened numerous of times. Aircraft delays and cancellation meant unhappy customers, so you had to secure support from everyone in the industry to lend a hand.

1. WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST JOB IN TOURISM AND WHEN?

After completing college at St Godrics UK, I returned to Seychelles on the 3rd BOAC VC10 flight from London in August 1971, which back then was a once weekly service via Rome to Nairobi to Seychelles. There was huge excitement as these huge ‘birds’ landed at Pointe Larue, crowds would gather just to see the arrival of the aircraft. Before that everyone travelled by BI Ships, so this was the real beginning of the tourism era for our country. I thought to myself how lucky I was that I had returned home at this time. My mother had already found me a job with Parkar and Oliaji Tours, one of the first travel agency in the Premier Building. Within a week, I was a personal secretary and tour guide and started taking reservations for Wilkenair (a once weekly small aircraft), that had been flying to Seychelles from Mombasa with the opening of the airport. One of my duties was a weekly day trip to Praslin on the Aero with tourists as their guide. I have such fond memories of the local schooner and camions, decorated with flowers and everyone ready to welcome with a smile, like Dan Payet and his team at Britannia Restaurant. Travel and tourism was and will always be the main industry of our nation, and I loved being a part of this pivotal economical contribution to Seychelles. It was a challenge though, for everyone involved in those early years, as we were all learning from scratch. By the 1st of March 1972, my first dream came true. I joined BOAC as the Secretary to the then District Manager at the new offices at Pirates Arms building. The airline grew fast and we were very soon in Kingsgate House with a good size team and number of flights and services. Seychelles was officially open for global tourism business and I had no idea how exciting this ride would be. This marked the beginning of my career in tourism partnered with airlines. I worked for British Airways for 34 years, retiring in March 2006. It was a most remarkable career, my last post being the Commercial Manager for Indian Ocean based in Mauritius with responsibilities for Mauritius, Seychelles, Reunion and Madagascar.

2. WHAT WAS THE GREATEST CHALLENGE?

My greatest challenge was moving from a very familiar territory as Seychelles Manager to the unknown world of British Airways (BA), in Mauritius. We are two small island neighbours but with so much diversity in size and culture in so many ways. There was also the extension of responsibilities, team and offices that felt at the beginning overwhelming.  The market is extremely competitive with many more travel agencies and other airlines they had more advanced methods to work with the changing environment of tourism globally. However I stood my stead and I can say that my 10 years spent there was a great farewell gift from BA.  I was given such a warm welcome that

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to this day I call it my second home, and I am grateful for the kindness, support and love the Mauritians gave me.

3. WHAT WAS THE GREATEST REWARD? As a Seychellois, to be the first appointed local Manager overseas for Seychelles as in the past all our Managers had been from the United Kingdom (a standard practice as it was a British Company). The icing on the cake came later, when I was transferred to be Regional Manager in Mauritius, on an overseas contract from a globally recognised airline. The ability to speak Creole endeared me to the team and there was often laughter due to my use of creole words, which was so different. I would say there is a meeting ‘dans mon l’office’ and will be waiting for the staff, until I realised that they were actually sitting in the ‘office –kitchen, and this was just one example.

4. WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO THE YOUNG SEYCHELLOIS OF TODAY WORKING IN THE INDUSTRY?

British Airways invested heavily in staff training, which was one of their strengths. Discipline was of utmost importance.  We would walk proudly in our uniforms, spick and span. We knew what was expected of us, our Managers were strict on protocol, manners, respect and above all behaviour. You did not go to a bar or restaurant in your uniform or even be seen eating on the street! There was a great level of pride working British Airways. For example there were no loud noises in the office, you were always on your best behaviour and our customers were always welcomed with a smile, eye contact and a kind look. We gave top quality personalised service every time and always gave our best. I believe when I look around at all of us who started in this industry, you can still see the ‘oldies’ with that same sense of responsibility and discipline, and we often reminiscence about the long hours we worked at the airport when flights were delayed and we stayed on to take care of our customers, ensuring their comfort or just being there for them. We had two important training slogans in BA and that was ‘the customer is always right’ and later on ‘putting people first’. There was dedication, teamwork and loyalty. We were a family in tourism, everyone helping each other, hotels or tour operators, when the chips were down and that happened numerous of times. Aircraft delays and cancellation meant unhappy customers, so you had to secure support from everyone in the industry to lend a hand.

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5. WHAT DO YOU THINK ARE THE KEY SKILLS AND PERSONALITY TRAITS NEEDED TO WORK IN TOURISM?

I would say the ability to enjoy working with people and the right attitude. Compassion, understanding, general helpfulness and you must always be approachable, no matter what the situation. A daily positive personality is a must, as well as assertiveness, as you need that to make important quick decisions. In our world everyone deserves the best customer service, which means sometimes going the extra mile to help out.

6. DID YOU HAVE A MENTOR WHEN YOU WERE WORKING? WHO? DO YOU THINK THIS TO BE IMPORTANT?

I worked under six different Expatriate Managers, each with their own style of management. I learnt to adapt to all of them, to study from them, the good and not so good. When we had differences of opinion, I stayed quiet, making notes and treating the experiences as a learning curve, as each one taught me something and contributed to my leadership skill set. At home it was my husband who gave me the opportunity to grow, he never held me back in my job prospects and supported me all the way. I also have to give credit to my mother, who was always ready to help me with the children, whenever I had to travel overseas.

7. WHAT CHANGES DO YOU SEE CAN BE MADE TO OUR INDUSTRY?

I see many small hotels owned by Seychellois, working hard to improve their standards and there are many good examples of this, but unfortunately we are now using expatriate workforce to complement our lack of Seychellois manpower. But in the past we had a great Seychellois team that were extremely hard working and a force to reckon with and dedicated to their work ethics. I believe the local workforce can be trained to tackle good Customer Service and this must be driven at a national level with all industries supporting the cause. We have examples of local people that have proven what discipline and hard work can achieve. Vicky is kept busy as owner of beachfront luxury self-catering “Sables d’Or” apartments, based on the historical L’Efevre property in Beau Vallon. www.sables-dor.sc


Sables d’Or Luxury Apartments

A gem in Beau Vallon Bay, these luxury studios are centrally located in the buzzing North of Mahé. Nathalie Hodgson speaks with the owners

Sunset at Beau Vallon Bay Seychelles: the golden sparkles touch the shore line, giving threads of silver shimmers on the white foam gently moving up and down the beach. It is there you will find the joyous smiles, children’s laughter and clinking champagne glasses of the guests of Sables d’Or and their proprietor Vicky Lanza. This is the ritual Vicky provides for her clients, the routine wind down celebratory bubbly for another glorious day in paradise. This ‘make-yourself-at-home luxury’ has been a huge hit as

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‘For the future, we are hoping to extend the garden and gazebo areas with more fruit trees and a small ‘plunge’ pool for the children to enjoy when the sea is rough during Monsoon season’. testified by online reviews, guestbook and repeat clientele seeking to recapture their sparkle in these luxury, self-catering beachside apartments. ‘I opened the doors in August 2013, and although it was our family home and a little sad to pull down, I knew once done there would be no regrets, and two years later I was right’ Vicky explains. ‘This is my retirement project, as a widow with most of the family abroad, it was time for me to do something for myself, to keep me busy’. Sable d’Or is a team of Seychellois, two cleaners, the reservations man and the housekeeper. ‘We are a small team but we strive to keep the guests happy. It’s the little things that matter. I share some local food and sometimes they also bring me their special dishes from their country’. Vicky knows all about top quality customer service, she joined BOAC or British Airways in 1972 and spent 35 years working for the airline. She was Manager in Seychelles and then transferred to Mauritius as Commercial Manager for the Indian Ocean. ‘I picked up certain values and key elements that are essential to make guests happy and every day we maintain these standards’.

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All four apartments are superbly designed and manage to combine classy sophistication with simplicity, which is the ideal feel for beach living. Each is self-catering, that contain everything you could possibly wish for, have huge balconies for putting up your feet up or just people watching. Each villa is named after a local fruit and with only 10 steps you are on the soft powdery sands of Beau Vallon Beach.

is rough during Monsoon season’. Even though they get such a variety of nationalities Vicky has discovered that they are all looking for luxury accommodation with that home away from home comfort feeling but with close proximity to activities and attractions. ‘We tick a lot of those boxes’ Vicky continues ‘parents with young children need to relax too and want everything at their fingertips’.

Vicky says that her guests come for relaxation and peace, but also a sense of belonging. ‘I have babysat children, played and swam with them, to give parents a break. I see their needs and try to fill them. Our main target market is families, so we built large front and back gardens, gazebo and lots of barbeque areas’. Vicky explains that most clients enjoy just relaxing in their villa apartment and lying on the beach loungers. Some may take excursions to go fishing and diving, and she enjoys spoiling them with fish barbecues with their catch, served in flavours their taste buds crave for more.

Vicky states that sometimes because of their popular location they are often affected by pollution, be it noise, litter, misbehaviour or other, and she hopes that once the Beau Vallon Promenade plans are complete the area will be agreeable for those residing close by. ‘No two days are the same. There are so many challenges running your own business and of course meeting the requests of clients. I am proud and most happy to enjoy my last working days in my own creation and seeing families enjoy this very special part of Seychelles that is so dear to me. I think of my parents strong traditions of the big family values of compassion and love and now I can do the same with an extended global family each day and this makes me very happy.’ Vicky concludes.

‘For the future, we are hoping to extend the garden and gazebo areas with more fruit trees and a small ‘plunge’ pool for the children to enjoy when the sea

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Out And About Calendar of Events 2015

Add any one of the bellow to your itinerary and you'll enrich your cultural experience when holidaying in Seychelles. For more information on events not featured go to http://www.seychelles.travel/ and click on events.

AUG

7-8th 15th

25-27th SEPT

SEYCHELLES SEA TURTLE FESTIVAL

Now in its 3rd year, the turtle festival continues to highlight the importance of the conservation of these beautiful creatures through fun activities and exhibitions. The 7th sees the official opening of the festival, For more information please read the inside feature.

FEAST OF THE ASSUMPTION OF MARY

Otherwise known locally as “15 Out”, the Feast of the Assumption of Mary is dedicated to the church of La Digue and is very popular with Seychellois from all islands who flock to the island for the occasion. For further information please contact the La Digue Board on telephone number +248 4 23 45 96.

SEYCHELLES ROUND TABLE REGATTA

The Round Table Regatta has become an important national event in the Island’s calendar. The event will span over one weekend, and takes place on the popular Beau Vallon Beach Front, near Savoy Resort. The event’s jam-packed schedule includes numerous sports competitions, live performances by local artists as well as many fairground games. The weekend culminates with a hilarious ‘Greasy Pole Contest’, where competitors struggle to reach a cash prize fixed on top of a 6-metre wooden pole smothered in grease. Last, but far from least, is the allimportant lottery draw at 1800hrs on Regatta Sunday. Keep an ear out for more updates!

4-7th

PRASLIN CULINARY & ARTS FIESTA

27-28th

WORLD TOURISM DAY

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Held for the first time this September, Praslin Culinary & Arts Fiesta will highlight the islands culinary skills with various tastings and other activities. The Fiesta is to take place at Grand Anse and Baie Sainte Anne Districts. World Tourism Day is celebrated in late September each year. Various activities held on those days to create an increase public awareness on the importance of the tourism industry in Seychelles. Contact the Seychelles Tourism Board for details.

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Tourism SEYCHELLES' STRONGEST TRADE In celebration of World Tourism Day on 27th September, as well as the two-year anniversary of Sesel Sa!, we caught up with the CEO of Seychelles Tourism Board, Sherin Naiken. By Lynette Botha raise Seychelles’ profile, enhance visibility and keep Seychelles top of mind, something we need to engage in across all our markets to ensure that we remain relevant and competitive. In the British market there is a lot of room for growth if we strengthen our relationship with existing British agents and tour operators as well as cultivating new ones. We must arm them with more knowledge of the destination and one way we shall do this is by launching our training program and online training tools for tour operators and agents, similar to the highly successful programme we have for France.

According to recent statistics, tourism is up by 15% this year already (as at June 2015). What do you attribute this rise to? I believe this can be attributed to several reasons, among which is the way we have re-oriented our marketing efforts over the past year, mixing our activities and apportioning additional funds to priority markets. Also, the fact that we are benefiting from greater airlift with Ethiopian Airlines returning, Air Seychelles and Etihad broadening their sphere of operations, Emirates returning to a twice daily schedule and Kenya Airways increasing its frequency. You were recently in the UK promoting the Seychelles to the British market and also appeared on CNN. Tell us about this trip and the new plans set in place for that market. This was a media trip designed to

China, Russia, India and South Africa are also big markets to target – does the STB have specific plans to rollout to appeal to each market, or will there be one standard destination marketing campaign to appeal to all? Each of these markets, which are currently priority markets for Seychelles, have unique characteristics that must be catered to. In India, for example, we must achieve the right mix between campaigns targeting agents and those aimed at consumers. These markets are receiving extra funds with which we plan to conduct an increased number of media and consumer campaigns. How are events like Miss Seychelles…Another World, Carnaval and Fet Afrik received by tourists; have you noticed an increase in arrivals tied to certain events? Yes, we believe that creating a suite of events rooted in the national character is a process that takes time but already the number of arrivals in April, when the carnival takes place, has increased considerably over the past few years and April 2015 broke all existing monthly records to date. Seychelles is known as a piece of paradise and a luxury holiday destination but how do you appeal to those who don’t have very deep pockets? Seychelles has long been known for its beauty and, being relatively isolated, there has always been a cost associated with visiting the islands. Today, the world has shrunk and visiting Seychelles has become a reality for tourists without deep pockets thanks to the increased airlift and the broad spectrum of accommodation establishments – small hotels, guesthouses and self-caterings, which have greatly levelled the playing field. Once on the islands, there are many ways of enjoying a holiday on a budget such as using public transport to get around, eating great food in local cafes, bars and take-aways and generally making the most of the destination and natural surroundings.

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“Today, the world has shrunk and visiting Seychelles has become a reality for tourists without deep pockets thanks to the increased airlift and the broad spectrum of accommodation establishments.” The World Travel Awards (WTA) is being held in Seychelles for the first time this year; that’s a major coup. Can you tell us what made the WTA choose Seychelles for its Gala Ceremony? Yes, we are very proud that the efforts made by Minister St. Ange and myself have borne fruit and that

our appeal for Seychelles to be considered by WTA was positively considered and finally accepted. 27 September is World Tourism Day – is anything special planned for that day in Seychelles? This year, we are looking at recognising those among us who have made memorable contributions to Seychelles’ tourism over many years, among other activities. As someone who sells the Seychelles, what are your three must do’s? Visit the Vallée de Mai, the home of the Coco-de-Mer; enjoy any one of our world-class beaches and taste our amazing Creole cuisine. Social media is a huge influencer in many tourism markets – is this something STB will look at exploring further and a channel to focus on in the coming years? We already have a new website: www.seychelles.travel and our social media platform has received a lot of attention with further exciting plans in the pipeline. What’s next for the Seychelles Tourism Board? The tourism board will continue to respond to the demands of the tourism industry, which are volatile and ever changing. We must remain tactically aware, light on our feet and make the very most of our human and financial resources which, together, will allow us to achieve the most for our industry.

Sherin Naiken received the award for Leading Tourism Board Indian Ocean at the World Travel Awards 2015 gala event, held in the Seychelles in June

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Creole Food Back to the basics

W

hen we talk about local cuisine, it can often get complicated and be daunting if you’re not familiar in the kitchen, so here are a few simple recipes for dishes seen on our kitchen tables on a regular basis. We have the humble rice, lentils and

bred ti fey (Moringa) which we also feature on page 60 for its health benefits. Here we feature it for its tasty soup but of course the health factor is an added bonus. This plant also grows easily in most gardens and is therefore a cheap meal, another bonus! We also have some fried fish to go with the meal.

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Lentils There are a few variations of the lentils but here in Seychelles we use the red split lentils and this unlike other lentils, does not need to be soaked prior to cooking. After rice, this is probably the most common dish on the table.

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Ingredients 2 cups lentils 6 cups water 1 medium onion, sliced 2 tsp garlic minced 1 tsp oil Salt to taste Preparing the lentils

Method

Always rinse and drain the lentils before you start. Then set aside. Next add the oil to a hot pan and when it starts to sizzle, throw in your onions and garlic and stir for a minute. Then add your drained lentils to the pot, stirring well so that the garlic and onions are properly mixed. Following that, add the water to the mixture. The water at this point can be from the tap. The water ratio is generally 1:3 but if in doubt add

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less and simply add hot water during the cooking process. Stir everything together and lower the fire so the lentils can cook slowly. The lentils are however usually cooked within 20 to 25 minutes so do remember to stir the pot occasionally so that the lentil doesn’t stick to the bottom. Towards the end of the process, the lentils will have a thick creamy consistency. Like the rice, the pot should be taken off the fire when ready to avoid drying out.

25 minutes

4-5 Serves


Rice The white rice has long been our staple and is usually cooked in the rice cooker. However if you’re not a regular rice eater, the rice is also easily cooked in a pot on the cooker.

Ingredients

reach your wrists. Place the pot on a low – medium fire and cook uncovered. Check the rice from time to time but don’t stir it too much as that will make it mushy. If you find that the rice is not tender enough, simply add more hot water (slowly).

2 cups long grain rice 4 cups water Before starting, the rice should be drained and checked for small debris. Draining also washes away excess starch. Put the rice in the pot and add water. The water ratio 1:2 but my granny once showed me a trick and said if you’re using a pot larger than your palm; the water ratio can be checked by putting your (clean) hands, palm first into the water. The rice should be level with your hand resting on top. The water should

15 minutes

4 Serves

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Fish Cooking fish can seem daunting but it’s all about finding the right fish. Here we use bonito which is a medium sized fish and part of the tuna family; this means that the bones tend to be fewer and easy to spot. The meat is red and cooks quickly.

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Ingredients Fish Oil Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation

Have your fishmonger (road side vendor) clean the fish for you. If using fresh fish**, you may cut into pieces straight away, in preparation for frying and add seasoning to taste. At this point, if you’re not quite ready to start cooking, place the fish in the fridge for a few minutes to keep fresh. Once you’re ready, heat the oil before adding the fish. Once added, let the fish sit for a few minutes before turning to cook the other side. Repeat this so that the fish cooks evenly. This fish cooks quickly so the cooking duration will depend on how dry you want your fish to be. In the image, the fish has been fried till it’s quite dry. Others prefer

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more moisture. Experiment and find out what works for you. ** If you’re using the fish from the freezer, give the fish ample time to defrost thoroughly. Many homes transfer the fish out of the freezer and into the fridge early morning in anticipation for the evening meal. Place in a bowl to catch any spills, and to avoid mess. Once back at home remove the fish from the fridge for any last thawing and continue as above.

10-15 minutes

3-4 Serves


Bred Ti Fey Despite its many health benefits which are now being made increasingly popular, this dish is a long time family favourite here in Seychelles. The fact that it is so widely and freely available has no doubt played a significant role in its popularity. It’s quick and easy to make. It comes in the form of a soup which is eaten on its own or dished over rice and the rest of the meal. In this instance of the latter, one would take more of the leaves.

Ingredients Large bowl of Bred Ti Fey leaves A head of garlic crushed One onion diced Dash of oil Water (1 litre)

Preparing the leaves

This is a leaf vegetable and it comes in the form of a branch with many tiny leaves. Make sure you get help in identifying the correct plant. Once this is done, you need to snap off the more tender looking branches. White flowers may also grow on the branches; add this to your stock (you can also add it to the soup). Once you have the branches, you need to then singularly break off each individual leaf. This part can be tedious so if you find that you have smaller finer branches in your cooking pot, that’s fine. These are edible. In time you’ll learn how to do this quickly. Ask someone to show you how.

Preparation

The leaves can sometimes be deemed as bitter, and to avoid this you need to put your leaves in a sieve and pour boiling water over it.

Immediately let the water drain out. Do not be tempted to boil the water and the leaves, as you then risk losing too many nutrients. Let the leaves in the sieve drain well while you prepare the pot. Adding a tiny bit of oil to a hot pot, you want to add the onions and garlic and slightly cook them, then add the leaves to the mixture, mixing well. Once your leaves are well mixed with the garlic and onions and has cooked for a minute or so, you then add a liter or so of boiling water to the mix. Then you can lower the heat and leave the pot covered for 10-15 minutes while the leaves releases its nutrients into the water. Add pepper to taste and serve hot. If you have kids in the family who hold green food in distain, you may give them just the soup as this is still filled with goodness.

25 - 30 minutes

3-4 Serves

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Seychelles Last Minute How did Seychelles Last Minute (SLM) come about and what are its objectives? My family has been in Seychelles hospitality for as long as I remember, in fact my grandmother opened one of the first guesthouses in Beau Vallon in 1974 called Villa Madonna. Although we lived in Zambia, we spent many holidays with her and her guests and I recall many magical moments. I returned to the Islands after completing my degree in Business specializing in marketing and after working in the industry for a few years, I opened a small business. My heart off course remained with the feelings of that real ‘old school’ Creole hospitality, so perhaps that’s where the seed was sown.  SLM is a segment of Holidays Direct Seychelles that falls under my company Sales & Marketing (Seychelles) Pty Ltd. Our ethos is to promote responsible tourism to the Islands by providing an online platform for Seychellois-owned small properties predominantly. Seychelles Last Minute specialises in last minute promotions for this type of accommodation and was created to cater for the shift in demand towards more last minute travel. Anila Bonne looks after the accommodation side of the business primarily and is your contact for where to stay.   

What is the targeted market and how is the message transmitted?

Seychelles Last Minute’s target market is a mostly international tourist base. Our portfolio appeals to independent travellers and increasingly more ethical

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tourists. We also have a small demand for domestic tourism.  

What do you think is the unique selling point of SLM?

Our USP is that we offer the most interesting places to stay in Seychelles with a best price guarantee. We showcase who we are fundamentally as a people – our unique Creole warm welcome and hospitality, our simplicity, our joie de vivre, our slow pace, our delicious cuisine and more. These authentic experiences are best felt in locally owned and run tourism establishments making them the most interesting places to stay in Seychelles in our eyes. These special places can be booked year round via Holidays Direct Seychelles, backed by a secure online booking facility and the service of local travel professionals. Seychelles Last Minute is a mechanism to promote any rooms that are available at a last minute price and is branded accordingly. Both are on the same website www.seychelles-last-minute.com.  

When considering a vacation to Seychelles what is the tourist who books with SLM looking for?

Visitors who book accommodation via Seychelles Last Minute are generally value-orientated, but who isn’t

“Top of the bucket list of our travellers I would say is to taste, feel and enjoy our island lifestyle. Most people dream of the slow rhythm of the islands under the African sun.”

Seychelles Last Minute owner Vesna Rakic and manager Anila Bonne

Talking hospitality, tourism and last minute deals with Vesna Rakic


these days? We also cater for another segment of ethical/conscious travellers who steer away from the large foreign booking sites, as the commission earned on a sale does not come to Seychelles.  

What have you found to be top of the bucket list for said visitors?

Traditionally Seychelles has always a tropical beach, romantic destination. More recently demand has grown to family travel, well-being, nature lovers and niche markets - diving, fishing etc. However top of the bucket list of our travellers I would say is to taste, feel and enjoy our island lifestyle. Most people dream of the slow rhythm of the islands under the African sun. The unparalleled beauty of Seychelles and the preservation of the archipelago through sound environment protection policies mean that a stay in Seychelles also offers so much more! Our visitors do not generally lie by a hotel pool for 10 days and return home. They want to explore and live the true Seychelles’ experience.  

If you were not a Seychellois would you still want to visit the Seychelles and why?

Seychelles is a destination that changes you. The Islands are the oldest Granitic Islands in the world although only inhabited for the last 260 years. They are claimed to be at the centre of the planet and are an energy hotspot! In addition we have a tropical year round climate that never drops below 27 degrees C; 50% of our land mass and (we are working towards) 30% of our oceans being protected by environmental policies with 2 World Heritage sites which includes the ‘Garden of Eden’; an enchanting history involving pirate treasures and French and English colonies with influences on our delicious Creole cuisine; multiple ‘officially awarded’ world famous beaches (CNN, National Geographic, Trip Advisor), the world’s healthiest ocean and the best fish, a small friendly population (and a chance to stay with them in locally owned tourism establishments), no harmful insects or animals, a safe destination record, no visas required plus a variety of things to do... what more could you ask for?  

What would be the best tip you could offer one wanting to visit the islands?

Visit the 3 principles Islands of Mahé, Praslin and La Digue at the very minimum. Stay in locally owned establishments, which you can book directly or through local booking websites such as www.seychelles-last-minute.

Vesna Rakic com. If you would like to know what’s on in the Seychelles while you are here there is a free events & entertainment service called Seychelles this week that we publish weekly and is accessible via our website and social media - Facebook, Twitter, Google+.   

What is the future of SLM?

Although we are a small player, our website has top Internet ranking of which I am very proud. Of course that is only onestep in the process of closing a sale. Despite all the passion and efforts, business has been really tough since the direct flights from Europe with our national airline were stopped and the big booking sites entered the market. We are hopeful that the re-introduction of direct flights to Paris this July will see an increase in the demand from our market segment. In terms of competition, although we cannot take on the big international chains, we have to step up our game and differentiate ourselves further. We count on the continued support of our partners and more importantly a preservation of our culture through them for future visitors to enjoy! www.seychelles-last-minute.com

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Island hopping Your guide to hopping around the key conservation areas of Seychelles By Elke Talma The Seychelles, an archipelago of 115 islands, has a total land area of 455 km² spread over an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of 1.3 million square kilometres, an EEZ slightly larger than South Africa and about six times the size of the United Kingdom. A little over 50% of the total land area is protected under law as nature parks or reserves, while marine parks and other conservation zones are said to constitute just 1% of Seychelles’ EEZ. These conservation areas are under the administration of a number of different Government institutions, parastatals and nongovernmental organisations (NGOs). The following is a quick guide to sites within the inner islands that should not be missed during your island-hopping holiday in Seychelles.

ARIDE NATURE RESERVE WWW.ARIDEISLAND.COM

A visit to Aride Island allows you to discover what the islands were like 250 years ago before human settlement. The island hosts one of the most important seabird populations in the Indian Ocean, with more species breeding than any other island in Seychelles. There are eighteen species of native birds, including five found only in Seychelles, who breed on Aride. The Island Conservation Society of Seychelles manages the island as a nature reserve. The only human inhabitants are the reserve’s staff, including the Island Manager, Conservation Officer and rangers. GETTING THERE: book a boat ride from Praslin through local tour operators and boat charters or fly over by Helicopter with Zil Air. VISITING TIMES: the island is open to visitors Monday to Friday between October- April when calm seas allow for safe landing. Visitors are also welcome during the South-east season on calm days – contact Aride Island Manager (+248 271 97 78) for more information. ENTRANCE FEE: 45 Euros for all non-Seychellois visitors.

BIRD ISLAND WWW.BIRDISLANDSEYCHELLES.COM

Bird Island is the northern most island in the Seychelles archipelago. This coralline island is named in honour of its spectacular colony of around 700,000 pairs of sooty tern (Onychoprion fuscatus) that nest on the island. The birds arrive from late March, laying eggs in May and remaining until

October before leaving the island. Between 1896 and 1906, 17,000 tons of guano were removed from the island and exported to Mauritius as fertilizer. The island was formerly a coconut plantation, and cash crops such as papaya and cotton were also grown. Since 1967, it has been privately owned and has received international accolades for its conservation measures which include the protection of birdlife and hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata) nesting sites, the eradication of feral rats and rabbits and the translocation of a population of Seychelles sunbird (Cinnyris dussumieri). GETTING THERE: book a inter island flight through Air Seychelles and reserve your accommodation at the Bird Island Lodge (+248 4 22 50 74) VISITING TIMES: the island is accessible all year round via a small landing strip that connects the island with Mahé. ENTRANCE FEE: not applicable Hawksbill hatchling by Elke Talma

CAP TERNAY MARINE NATIONAL PARK ON MAHÉ ( WWW.SNPA.SC )

The Cap Ternay Marine National Park provides some of the best diving and snorkelling in the north of Mahé. It supports a diverse array of marine species and the sheltered bay protects a range of marine habitats including extensive coral reefs reaching depths of nearly 40m, a shallow sea grass bed which acts as a nursery for many species, a ship wreck attracting pelagic fish and shallow sandy areas perfect for anchoring and mooring yachts. With its extensive sea grass bed and coral reef, this marine park is a renowned foraging ground for juvenile green turtles (Chelonian mydas) and hawksbill turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata), with the odd whale shark (Rhincodon typus) thrown in for good measure. The Seychelles National Parks Authority manages the site.

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Bird Island is the northernmost island in the Seychelles archipelago. This coralline island is named in honour of its spectacular colony of around 700,000 pairs of sooty tern that nest on the island.

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The Port Launay mangrove forest is not only the largest on Mahé, but also the most diverse, supporting all seven species of mangroves known to occur in the region. GETTING THERE: book a trip with any dive operators, glass bottom boats and boat charters based at Beau Vallon or port Glaud VISITING TIMES: year round ENTRANCE FEE: scr 200 for all non-Seychellois visitors plus a mooring fee of Scr250 if you want to anchor overnight. Cousin nature reserve www.Cousinisland.Net

Cousin Island Special Reserve is a granitic island covering 27 hectares and lies approximately 2km from Praslin Island. In 1968, it became the world’s first internationally owned-reserve when it was purchased by the International Council for the Protection of Birds (ICBP), now Birdlife International, with aim of saving the last remaining population of the Seychelles warblers. Today, it is not only renowned for sea birds and endemic land birds, but is also the most important breeding site for Hawksbill turtles in the Western Indian Ocean. Nature Seychelles manages the reserve, which benefits local communities on the neighbouring Praslin Island through eco-tourism. (www.natureseychelles.org) GETTING THERE: book a boat ride from Praslin through local tour operators and boat charters or fly over by Helicopter with Zil Air. VISITING TIMES: the island is open to visitors from Monday to Friday, between 10:00am and midday. You can contact the island manager for more information (+248 2 71 88 16) ENTRANCE FEE: scr500 per person for a day trip

Curieuse Marine National Park

Curieuse is a bio-reserve that is managed by the Seychelles National Parks Authority (www.snpa.sc). The island is a major tourist destination for day trips and offers a range of activities from nature trails,

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snorkelling, sunbathing etc. There are many unique things to see on Curieuse including the Coco de Mer, mangrove forests, Aldabra tortoises, Takamaka trees, hawksbill and green sea turtle breeding ground and the Seychelles Black Parrot as well as many indigenous flora and fauna. GETTING THERE: book a boat ride from Praslin through local tour operators or boat charters. VISITING TIMES: the ranger base is open from 08:00 to 17:00 every day including public holidays. ENTRANCE FEE: scr 200 for all non-Seychellois visitors plus a mooring fee of scr 250 if you want to anchor overnight.

Nature Seychelles Sanctuary at Roche Caiman, Mahé

The Sanctuary is an artificial wetland, built in 1986, as a result of reclamation works along the east coast of Mahé. The site covers roughly 2.9 hectares and is the only urban wetland reserve in Seychelles, located between the Roche Caiman housing estate and the National Sports Complex. The site is managed by the local NGO Nature Seychelles (www.natureseychelles. org) who are considered experts in habitat and environmental conservation. In addition to being a bird sanctuary, the site is home to many other coastal flora and fauna providing an exciting focus for national conservation, education and research. Visitors can also join the Green Yoga Sessions, which combines the benefits of yoga and nature. The organic Heritage Garden provides a variety of tropical gifts and other organic goodies to take home with you GETTING THERE: take the public bus to Roche Caiman and walk towards the Sport Complex, taking the long straight driveway along the green fence or take a taxi. VISITING TIMES: Monday to Friday from 08:00 to 16:00 although special tours can be arranged outside working hours. Contact Nature Seychelles for more information (+248 4 60 11 00) ENTRANCE FEE: scr 25 for all non-Seychellois visitors plus an additional scr100 per yoga class.

Port Glaud Ramsar site on Mahé

The Port Launay mangrove forest is not only the largest on Mahé, but also the most diverse, supporting all seven species of mangroves known to occur in the region. Associated with these mangrove trees are various species of birds, bats, fish, mollusc, crustaceans, insects and other invertebrates that shelter, feed, roost and breed amongst the branches, the roots and in the surrounding waters. In fact, this mangrove is of particular importance as it reportedly supports a population of the Critically Endangered and endemic Seychelles sheath-tailed bat (Coleura seychellensis), which forages for insects living amongst the mangrove trees. This 29-hectare site was declared a Ramsar coastal


wetland in 2004 giving it international status as a site of local and global importance. Constance Ephelia Resort and Spa, who is working together with Government, local NGOs and community groups to restore this amazing natural heritage of Port Glaud, are managing the site. Visitors can walk along trails within the mangrove or kayak along the waterways. Contact Ephelia Resort and Spa for more information about guided tours. GETTING THERE: take the public bus to Port Glaud VISITING TIMES: all year round ENTRANCE FEE: not applicable

Veuve reserve on La Digue

Located on La Digue, the Veuve Special Reserve forms part of a 200 hectares plateau, on the Western side of the island, and it covers 17 hectares. This site was set-aside in 1982 for the legal protection of wildlife habitats and to provide breeding and feeding habitat for the rare endemic bird species, the Seychelles Black Paradise Flycatcher (Tersiphone corvina). During the last population survey, 20 breeding pairs were recorded living within the boundaries of the Special Reserve, which is currently being managed by the Seychelles National Parks Authority (www. snpa.sc). More than 1000 international visitors visit the Veuve Special Reserve every year, to watch the birds as well as to experience the low-lying forest of Seychelles offer. A large number of those visitors come specifically to the site to see the Seychelles Black

Paradise Flycatcher but are often lucky to see other species such as terrapins, fruit bats and moorhens. GETTING THERE: take the ferry to La Digue and either walk or cycle to the Reserve VISITING TIMES: the small information centre is open from 08:00 to 16:00 from Monday to Friday. ENTRANCE FEE: free entry for all

Vallée De Mai World Heritage site on Praslin

The Vallée De Mai palm forest is a remarkable remnant of the prehistoric forest, which existed when the Seychelles Islands were still part of Gondwanaland. Millions of years of isolation enabled a unique community of plants and animals to develop in the Vallée De Mai, some of which are found nowhere else in the world, such as the endemic Coco de Mer (Lodoicea maldivica). The Seychelles Islands Foundation (SIF) has managed this UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1989. In addition to a comprehensive education and outreach programme, SIF has a long-term scientific research programme that monitors many of the endemic species found within the boundaries of the Vallée De Mai. GETTING THERE: book a tour with a travel agent or take the public bus to the visitor centre VISITING TIMES: open all year round from 08:00 to 16:30 every day ENTRANCE FEE: 20 Euros for all non-Seychellois visitors, free to under 12’s (with proof of age)

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The first Christian Ashanti King of the Seychelles From Seychelles to Ghana, the story of the Asante king exiled in paradise By Mawess Mea Wirtz The 1814 Treaty of Versailles ceded the Seychelles to the British and they found an interesting use for the tiny islands. They used the Seychelles as the “holding cell” for unwanted political activists thus leading to the islands’ “hosting” guests of royal blood in the form of an Ashanti noble family.

The plight of a king He was Nana Prempeh I, the Asante King and therefore a valuable tool, regardless that he was only a youngster. When the British tried to invade the Ashanti, these proud people resisted and the British hatched a nefarious plan in the hopes that this would both get them what they want and prevent war. It was thus that Prempeh and 55 other members of his household found themselves prisoners of war and exiled! He had dared to say NO to British “protection” so they decided to invade him and take over instead.

Then there was war The decision to exile him stemmed from a violent past brought about by the pride of a nation. Adu Boahen tells us that after Prempeh refused even to allow a British commissioner to be stationed in Ashanti land, “an army under the command of Sir Francis Scott

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was dispatched to occupy Asante. This army entered Kumasi in January 1896”. Prempeh was either a very astute young man or had excellent advisers because at his bequest the Asante did not fight back. “Nana Prempeh I fully realized its cost and futility”, since he gave himself up “the British army arrested Nana Prempeh I, his mother, father, a brother a number of leading Kumasi and other Asante chiefs and conveyed them to Freetown in Sierra Leone” because as it was he who had been leading his people and they thought to cut off the head of the serpent. Unfortunately for the British this master plan backfired! AgyemangDuah(2000) explains that the Ashanti were incited into rage by the blatant abduction of their king! At 70 years of age a courageous woman by the name of Nana Yaa Asentewaa, the Queen mother of Edweso, lead a resistence movement against the invading British troops. “She built a personal army of 4,000 and appointed field commanders. The war lasted from April 2, 1900 to March 1901.” However she was betrayed and captured on March 3, 1901. “A prisoner of war, she was taken to Kumase and eventually sent to Mahé in the Seychelles Islands, where she joined Nana Prempeh and other Asante exiles. She passed away in the Seychelles in 1922 at about 90 years of age.”


Wandering exile The Ashanti kingdom is located in Ghana and at first the British sent him to Sierra Leone, note that he was only around 21 years of age at that time. He was there for 3 years before the British decided that having him on the continent was a problem they wished to rectify, they did not want him in a position to be able to influence his kingdom so banishment to an isolated archipelago where communication could be monitored seemed ideal. And so it was that, as Mathiot tells us, “on September 11, 1900, the 29-year-old King Prempeh arrived on the SS Darwack accompanied by his beloved Queen Mother and 55 followers”. It was an exile that would span around 15 years until November 1924.

Island exile According to Mathiot, when Prempeh arrived his name was King Nana Agyimawn Prempeh of Ashanti, he came with his queen mother, Asantehemaa Yaa Akyaa; his brothers, uncles and several other members of the royal household. He was given a house in a district of Mahe, the main island, that is currently called Le Rocher. Adu Boahen explains that to sustain themselves “ Prempeh I and the other chiefs were paid monthly stipends or allowances each according to his rank, by the British Government”. It is not known what the conditions to his exile where but these must have been lapsed on the island because Mathiot states that, “by 1909 he had begun to integrate into Seychellois society”. And thus started the Anglicising of the Ashanti king, which came complete with Christianity, in this estate which the locals started referring to as the “Asante camp”.

Island influence Prempeh was happy in Seychelles, Adu Boahen states that “relations between them and the indigenous people remained smooth and cordial throughout” and even to the point that “six of the Asante young men including two of Nana Prempeh’s children married local women”. Even though a “senior police officer was put in charge of the Asante political prisoners to see that peace and discipline were maintained. In the Camp, the Asante were allowed to govern themselves through a committee of the senior chiefs with Nana Prempeh I as its chairman” and he ruled and remained king of a thriving Ashanti village, displaced though they were. Adu Boahen explains that “though the population dropped to 40 following the repatriation of 34 people in 1907, it rose to 84 by 1915 and to 139 by 1924”. Prempeh was a chameleon who adapted to his surroundings. Adu Boahen tells us that aside from “ensuring that his people lived perfectly normal and happy lives, Nana Prempeh I occupied himself with three other activities connected with their welfare namely, their education, conversion to Christianity and repatriation”. He did this by setting the example himself and set about learning to speak, write and

read the English language. He used his position and influence to ensure “that educational facilities were provided for the inmates. Thus, a school was built in the camp for the infants while the youth attended elementary and secondary schools in Victoria. Nana Prempeh I took particularly keen interest in the Camp School and saw to it that all children attended school regularly. On the completion of their education, some of them obtained employment as civil servants, typist, clerks and cooks, and some of the women became experts in domestic science”.

A God fearing man The biggest change Prempeh made to his life was his embrace of Christianity, which ironically, after all his defiance, is probably something that the British had hoped to achieve. He converted to Christianity soon after his arrival and according to Adu Boahen, “he saw to it that the other inmates followed his example. Indeed, as early as 1902, he requested that the Civil Chaplain of Seychelles, Rev. R. Fuller, should be employed to give religious instructions to the political prisoners on a salary of 500 rupees per annum. Though this request was turned down, he and some of his followers continued to receive religious instruction”. History was made on 29th May, 1904, when he, his mother and others in his camp were baptized into the Anglican Church, after this he attended service in town every Sunday and Adu Boahen states that he “insisted that the inmates of the camp did so too; and most of them including even the old Nana Yaa Asantewaa became Christian”. He took his faith so seriously that he even prepared for the future members of his family. Adu Boahen tells us that; “he persuaded one of his children, John Prempeh, to go to Mauritius in 1911 to train as a chaplain. He returned to Ghana in 1930 and did work as an Anglican priest in Kumasi, Mampong and other places till his death”.

There is no place like home Even though evidence indicates that Prempeh loved his island life, he never forgot that he was the Ashanti king. He launched various petitions asking

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Prempeh spoke Creole, loved the local cuisine and music and had fully immersed himself into the Creole culture, as had the rest of his Asante comrades more importantly, he loved the Seychelles!

A Christian Ashanti king It was not the same man that went back to Ghana, a piece of his life in Seychelles went back with him. Prempeh was now westernised and he had experienced a different kind of life and this is what influenced Ghana. Adu Boahen tells us that when he returned, he did all he could to promote them in Kumasi in particular and Asante in general on his return home. On the contrary, he did try a synthesis of the Asante and British ways of life and to accelerate the process of modernization ushered in with colonial rule”. When he returned he had quite the contingent with him because by “1901 the, there was a total of 74 Asante there consisting of 30 chiefs, 15 women (mainly wives of some of the chiefs), 13 children and 16 attendants. 24 of them died there, and their dependants were repatriated in 1908, 1918, and 1923”. Seven years after he was allowed to go back home King Prempeh I died in 1931. The Ashanti laid to rest a modern king that spoke the language of a tiny island nation and was proud of that. for repatriation the first of which was according to Adu Boahen on “31st October, 1901, that is only a year after his arrival in Seychelles” then “second one followed in 1902 and the third in 1904, after all of them were summarily rejected, he could only wait for some time, and it was not until 1910 that he dispatched another petition. This was followed with similar petitions and letters in 1911, 1912, 1913, 1917, 1918, 1920 and finally 1921, the petitions becoming more plaintive and desperate in tone with the years. It was the combined result of these persistent petitions and those of the Asante people at home, as well as questioning by some chiefs and commoner members in the Legislative Council of the Gold Coast and above all, of the mutual confidence that had developed between the Asante and the British administration on the Gold Coast, that Prempeh I and the other inmates of the Camp were finally allowed to return home in November 1924”.

The Seychelles that I love Prempeh experienced Christianity and western education because of his exile to Seychelles and it was something he appreciated despite that he remained always and truly Asantethene and kept on living a traditional Asante’s life. On leaving the Seychelles he wrote a letter saying, “Although I will be far from you, I shall never forget the infinite courtesy and respect shown to me by all classes of the population and the beautiful sights of the Seychelles.” At that point

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Sources: Adu Boahen, Albert. PREMEH I IN EXILE: http://ghanaculturepolitics.com/prempeh-1-in-exile/ Agyeman-Duah, I. (2000). The Asante monarchy in exile:sojourn of King Prempeh I and Nana Yaa Asantewaa in Seychelles. Kumasi(Ghana): Centre for Intellectual Renewal:Ausapp Print. Mathiot, Tony: http://www.findallpills.com/2014/07/ seychelles-independence-june-29-1976-june-29-2014. html Mathiot, Tony: http://sharenews.com/spirit-ofancestors-inspired-seychelles-independence/


Bred

Mouroum

The ‘miracle’ plant of the Seychelles with myriad health benefits

By Mma Metsi Photograph by Suzanne Verlaque

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While the Seychellois might not know its scientific name of Moringa oleiferaa, all homes are familiar with the plant as one of the main ingredients in popular culinary dishes. Commonly known as ‘bred pti fey’, it is a plant that can be found growing in the garden of most homes. Mr Ferdinand Vidot, a local medicine man in the Seychelles, states that all parts of the plant – from its leaves and flowers, to its bark, fruit, roots and even seeds – can be used to make treatments for various ailments. He says that no pregnancy should go by without the woman taking a daily dose of an infusion of the leaves, as it is very rich in nutrients.

Research shows that the plant can be used to treat any topical infection, be it viral, parasitic or fungal, as it has both antiinflammatory and antiseptic properties. Modern medicine tells us that the Moringa provides a rare combination of zeatin, quercetin, beta-sitosterol, caffeoylquinic acid and kaempferol. He explains that the plant has restorative powers that can be beneficial to everyone and will easily boost one’s energy levels while keeping common ailments at bay. While Mr Ferdinand also promotes the use of a daily dose of an infusion of the leaves to treat anaemia, modern medicine explains this is because the plant has high iron content.   He advocates the use of a paste made from the crushed leaves of the plant as a means of preventing infections of wounds and drying it. Research shows that the plant can be used to treat any topical infection, be it viral, parasitic or fungal, as it has both anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.  

According to Mr Ferdinand he also makes a special tea for women who have trouble producing milk for breastfeeding; the flowers are placed in hot water and allowed to simmer, the extract is then consumed. He gives the pods to children to eat for de-worming. And the bark and roots are also used to create a tea that he uses to treat digestion issues. He also uses it to treat flatulence, pains, ulcers and diarrhoea. The seeds he boils and crushes to encourage urination. He believes that the Moringa really can be used to cure most ailments. Finally, our local herbalist swears that a tea made from the leaves can help men with erectile problems and also help increase the sex drive of women. Research shows that the Moringa is being investigated for its aphrodisiac properties, so he is spot on.   In Seychelles the plant can be found growing in most backyards and most families will consume it at least once a week. A dish called “bouyon bred’’ (soup from its leaves) is a particular favourite. The nutritious value of such a dish per serving would be around 9.8g of protein per 100g of the fresh raw leaves. That is around 17.5% of the daily-required levels. The growing tips and fresh leaves are known to be the richest source of vitamin A and a 100g provides 252% of the daily-required levels. Vitamin A aids mucus membrane repair, maintenance of skin integrity, vision and immunity. There is also vitamin C at 86.5 mcg, which is 86% of the daily-required amount. This vitamin helps remove harmful substances from the body. There is also calcium 6.25 mg, iron 425 mcg, magnesium 1.84 mg, zinc 16.45 mcg, copper 675 mg and potassium 9 mg. The fine sources of minerals like calcium, iron, copper, manganese, zinc, selenium, and magnesium have specific roles. Iron alleviates anaemia, calcium is required for bone strengthening and zinc plays a vital role in hair-growth and skin health.   The fresh pods and seeds are a good source of oleic acid and good amounts of vital B-complex vitamins like folates, vitamin-B6, thiamine (vitamin B-1) at 13.2 mcg, riboflavin 102.5 mcg, niacin 41 mcg, and pantothetic acid, which function as co-enzymes in carbohydrate, protein, and fat metabolism.   As a whole, it is not strange that the moringa has been pegged as a plant that is to be used to improve the dietary requirements in many third world countries.

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DINING REVIEW

Beau Vallon’s new foodie spot Many good things come in small packages and this is true of Tropical Café. Open seven days a week, this entrepreneur understands the need to meet demand. Newly opened by Astrid Hoareau, the café’s offerings are simple but satisfy the needs of a weary customer, looking for a sweet delight or a quick snack and pick-me-up on the way to or from the beach. Situated in Beau Vallon, Tropical Café is slap-bang in tourist central and could not be better situated in terms of district. Beau Vallon is home to one of the most beautiful beaches on the Mahé, and is easily the most famous in Seychelles. Most visitors staying on Mahé will pass by to experience the delight of one of our longest stretches of beach. When doing so, we recommend a visit to Tropical Café for your fill of something delicious.

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DIRECTION: Tropical Café can we found tucked in the corner of Palmont Commercial Centre just after the Beau Vallon Police Station. The building also has D’Offay Pharmacy, a Cable and Wireless office and an ISPC store. Mobile Number: 2522019.


DINING REVIEW

Olé, olé If you’re in the mood for a good Spanish cuisine with a great atmosphere, read on…

Seafood Paella

They say that looks can be deceiving and this is certainly true for Olé Spanish Terazza in Anse Royal. The outside facade of the restaurant promises a cheerful but casual setting (which we enter having heard great reviews about the food). However, once you set foot in the courtyard, you’ll be blown away by the setup, which quickly transports you to another place. Decorated with elegance and charm, one imagines that this is exactly what a tapas bar looks like in Spain. In Spanish cuisine, tapas refer to the serving of a variety of finger foods or appetizers.  A collection of tapas will make for a delicious and complete meal and this is why tapas is popular in bars as it is seen to be a great way to dine while still being able to socialize. We choose a selection of six tapas, which we enjoy as a starter, followed by beefsteaks with chips, as well as a jug of the all-traditional Sangria. Sangria is a drink originating from Spain and as it is served chilled, it is the perfect drink for warm afternoons and evening. 

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pas

A selection of Ta

The base is made of red wine and fruit and juices are typically added. It is delicious. The mood is relaxed and amiable, and we chatted while waiting for the food with the sea breeze blowing a gentle cool wind and the local band adding background music. When the food arrived, we quickly realised that what we deemed to be a ‘starter’ was much bigger than we’d envisaged. Before us lay a feast of mouth-watering delicacies – beef meat balls, mussels, smoked fish, pork belly and chicken, each with their own accompaniments. We ate slowly, savoring the different tastes and textures and promised to come back again soon to try the other tapas options on the menu. There are in fact 28 different tapas to choose and even for vegetarian options and there is also the Sea Food Paella to try which another traditional and food in Spain. Our main meal was the beef in pepper sauce, served with chips and vegetables.  The beef was another delight with the meat being tender and tasty.  The

vegetables were also served in a creamy sauce that complemented the meat well. Once we were completely full and couldn’t take another bite we continued to sip our sangria and enjoyed the surroundings. We have already planned our next evening at Olé – and this time, we’ll be bringing more friends. Olé Spanish Terazza is open from 13.30 to 21.00 every day of the week except on Sundays. They also works closely with the adjoining take-away store next door, called La Fiesta, which also serves delicious meals for those on the go.  For more please visit their Facebook page or call on 2 583 916.

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The Turtles are coming! Warm tropical waters, pristine sheltered reefs teaming with life, a healthy and largely intact ecosystem – what more could a traveller want? Visitors to Seychelles this August can add the cherished annual Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival to their plans, to be held this year on 7th – 8th August 2015. Marine turtles are some of the world’s greatest international travellers, often crossing through international waters and over country boundaries, and given the chance, living a long life. It is in Seychelles that more and more, these ancient Homeresque warriors of the oceans can find space to rest, feed and reproduce. Worldwide, sea turtles face threats such as poaching, entanglement in fishing nets and fish aggregating devices (FADs), and the destruction of their nesting beaches through coastal development. Six of the seven species of sea turtle are now globally endangered. With sea turtles given the full protection of the law in Seychelles since 1994 (it is illegal to kill, possess or eat turtle

meat), and with increased wealth and access to many food choices, the days of harvesting marine turtles as an important food source are diminishing. Two of the most threatened species, the Hawksbill Turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata) and the Green Turtle (Chelonia mydas) come to some of the undisturbed and sheltered beaches of Seychelles to lay their eggs. The success of yet another Hawksbill Turtle nesting season has given the organisers of the 2015 Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival even more to celebrate.

Seychelles is a magnet to the curious and the adventurous from all corners of the globe. Visitors come to experience the natural treasures of Seychelles, and intimate wildlife experiences rank highly as some of the greatest memories of their visit. The chance to learn about magnificent marine turtles with an expert guide, to bear witness to a female laying her eggs on the beach, or observing and helping to safely guide hatchlings into the ocean for the first time can change the way we see our place in the world. The

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Photos by C Mason-Parker

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Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival provides an opportunity for everyone from one to one hundred to learn about turtles, their conservation and the marine environment in a fun, family oriented festival with loads of awesome activities and take home treats. A small and dedicated committee has brought together those who run turtle research programmes in Seychelles, schools and environment clubs, artists and passionate individuals to create a vibrant weekend that will raise awareness and celebrate all things turtle. The Natural History Museum Seychelles will be hosting a grand opening ceremony on Friday 7th August that will feature short interactive conservation presentations and a prize giving for the several school and public competitions that are being held. On Saturday 8th August from 12 – 5pm, Beau Vallon Beach will be transformed into a Turtle Bazaar with stalls featuring arts and craft activities, face painting, information on research and conservation programmes, games and souvenirs, food and drinks for sale. Snorkelling, sandcastle competitions, and educational games on the beach will add to the festival atmosphere. Local radio station Pure FM will also be broadcasting live from the site all afternoon – come down and say hello! The festival is supported by the Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Education. The Environment Trust Fund has generously provided funding while a number of sponsors have contributed towards this year’s event. For further information about the Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival please visit their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ pages/Seychelles-Sea-Turtle-Festival/665862866762220?ref=hl, or their website at www.seychellesseaturtlefestival.org. If you would like to get involved please contact seychellesseaturtlefestival@yahoo.com  

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THE OUTER ISLANDS PROJECT 62

Taking biodiversity conservation beyond Seychelles’ inner islands

The Seychelles Islands are recognised worldwide as having a pristine environment and rich biodiversity.  The majority of the Protected Areas in Seychelles have been established to protect Seychelles’ unique biodiversity where it is most vulnerable and/ or abundant.  Protected areas, in Seychelles and worldwide, remain the basis of many conservation policies. The Seychelles Islands are a global leader in environmental conservation with our President committing to declare over 50% of Seychelles’ terrestrial area under biodiversity conservation and efforts have now started to commit over 30% of Seychelles’ marine area as protected. In line with this commitment, the Government of Seychelles (GOS), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) are implementing a project for the Expansion and Strengthening of the Protected Area Subsystem of the Outer Islands of Seychelles. The Outer Islands are the islands situated beyond the Seychelles Plateau, comprising of 72 low-lying sand cays and atolls.  They are spread over our Exclusive Economic Zone, but to many people they remain an unknown land due to their remoteness. These beautiful, remote islands offer untouched habitats for our biodiversity.   Island Conservation Society (ICS), a Non-Governmental Organisation who manages the conservation aspect of the Outer Islands, is playing a leading role in the implementation of the projects activities at four targeted protected area sites; Alphonse Group, Desroches, Poivre and Farquhar Group.     One activity the project is establishing is citizen science.

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Citizen science is the regular collection and analysis of data, development of technology and the dissemination of these activities by recreational scientists who are volunteers. The volunteers, many of who may have no particular scientific training, perform the research related tasks such as observation and measurements.  The data obtained is simple but can be useful for management programs because it can provide data from a much larger area and number of sites. Globally, there are an increasing number of citizen science programmes, such as recreational diver programmes like Cousteau Divers that engage tourism operators and the general public in data collection.  Dive operators and fishing guides regularly visit the same sites, and can therefore make more frequent observations than would be feasible for scientific researchers. The Outer Islands Project will establish a cooperative and participatory marine monitoring program with the marine sports centres on two of the project’s targeted islands; Desroches and Alphonse.  Building on existing cooperation between these organizations and Island Conservation Society (ICS), this activity will develop an expanded participatory program to record observations, catches and other information collected Photo Courtesy: Seychelles National Marine Parks


Globally, there are an increasing number of citizen science programmes, such as recreational diver programmes like Cousteau Divers that engage tourism operators and the general public in data collection. during diving and snorkelling and fishing.  Activities such as collecting simple dataset of the presence of key indicators species such as fish, sharks, turtles or record coral health or fish guides when fishing with clients all contribute towards citizen science.

spatial and temporal distribution of species, and help to identify and prevent emerging threats to marine biodiversity. These monitoring systems can also provide a mechanism to raise alerts, for coral bleaching impacts or outbreaks of Crown-of-Thorns starfish or coral diseases, which could then be followed up by more detailed scientific surveys.   The beauty of our natural environment form the core of Seychelles tourism product and integrating biodiversity conservation within tourism business operations have been recognised as a country’s priority.  Establishing citizen science in the Outer Islands future Protected Areas is an example of such integration and furthermore the engagement of public and clients in this fashion not only contributes to conservation management practices, but educates and excites people to become more active in the natural environment.   Contributed by GOS-UNDP-GEF Programme Coordination Unit. 

Implementing a recreational diver observation programme will improve understanding of the

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In praise of the coconut A homegrown advocate for all things Seychelles, Mr Achille Luc knows a lot more about the islands than just the coconut – but it’s a good place to start… By Ineke Camille Those living in the Seychelles, sometimes overlook the abundance of beautiful trees that bear a fruit that is praised both locally and abroad. Visitors to our shores are au fait with the ingredient that is marketed and used in myriad products, including soap, shampoo, body cream and food items, like biscuits and chocolates. They’ve seen tins of coconut milk on the supermarket shelves and known that the milk was a necessary ingredient to a particular curry or another exotic meal. Coconut oil has recently been heavily marketed as being as good as (if not better than) virgin olive oil, with its own host of benefits that rival the humble olive. Coconut oil is used as cooking oil as well as an salve for treating hair and can be directly used on skin as a phenomenal moisturiser. Visitors understand that the coconut is

He is passionate about retaining the islands’ cultural heritage, which includes the appreciation of the coconut.

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transformed into many products and is processed in different forms but beyond that, the coconut remains a mystery to many of them. On most Tuesdays afternoons, and when demand dictates, those lucky enough to be staying at the Kempinksi Resort are in for a treat with a detailed presentation on all things coconut. This presentation is orchestrated by Achille Luc. He is a man who walks with an air of energy; rooted in his culture, he is clearly proud of who he is and where he comes from, and he is passionate about retaining the islands’ cultural heritage, which includes the appreciation of the coconut. He explains it’s traditional role from days gone by and showcases the forms in which it is produced, the byproducts and the traditional processes to extract it in various forms. This interesting presentation goes on for just over an hour and explains the value of the coconut tree; in the olden days, with few resources available, islanders would rely on the coconut tree for much more than only the coconut. Via the lively presentation Achille talks and shows the many uses of the coconut leaves, the husks, the coconut shell, and the fibers that grow within the tree. It is indeed an interesting hour spent and you are left with a deeper appreciation of the island nut. Achille has much to share of the Seychelles culture and is a good person to talk to, if you want to hear a story of days gone by. He is also someone deeply connected to nature and as a man of the South, tends to stick around his neighborhood of Baie Lazare, where he knows the best trails and is often sought out to advise on just that. He is an experienced guide to most of

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MahÊ’s trails and takes pride in his knowledge of the local flora and fauna. As a wonderful personality, whether you engage him for a guided tour into the mountains or are able to be part of his lively coconut presentation, the meeting will leave a mark. For more information about the presentation or to book Achille for a nature trail, feel free to make contact with him directly on +248 2524608 or email him on alkwame@hotmail.com

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Constantly learning One of Constance Ephelia Resorts’ top sous chefs lets us in on his career so far By Ineke Camille Sous chef of Constance Ephelia’s Seselwa Restaurant, Joel Constance, is full of enthusiasm. It is heartening to see a 27-year old with such energy and passion; someone who has ambitions for both himself and the other youths of Seychelles. A local of Mont Fleuri, with two children, Joel is so dedicated to his work that he lives on-site in an apartment three days a week and whenever the hotel is really busy. Joel’s job is to oversee all aspects of the operation in the kitchen; this includes covering a wide range of roles – from cooking and creating menus to coming up with recipes and other special meals to taste and sample. He also does presentation and plating as well as overseeing the kitchen staff. When he can, he leaves the kitchen to mingle with the clients during meal times, to hear firsthand reviews from those sampling his culinary delights. The comments are mainly positive but all feedback is taken seriously and addressed, and

improvements are always being made. This is possibly his favourite part of the job, as hearing the positive feedback from the guests is empowering and drives him to learn more and continue to offer a better service. Joel has been with Ephelia for almost eight months and with a surname like Constance, it seems as if he was destined to work for the hotel group. Joel arrived at Ephelia with considerable experience, having worked in some of the islands’ leading hotels, including Maia and Hilton.  

When he can, he leaves the kitchen to mingle with the clients during meal times, to hear firsthand reviews from those sampling his culinary delights. For this young man, there was no career choice – he knew this was what he wanted to do, no doubt. This was the only path for him and he’s pursued it relentlessly, having started studying at the Seychelles Tourism Academy (STA) for the first time in 2005 and gaining several qualifications along the way, including a pastry course in Reunion and participating in training almost yearly, as well as his year-long return to STA where he learnt the theory of teaching cooking. While he enjoys teaching, he ultimately likes being on the job and for Joel that means in the kitchen and not in front of a class. That said, Joel does not rule

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out a return to the classroom at a later date. Joel has worked in a range of hotels of different capacities, giving him the vantage point to experience kitchens and management styles of various-sized kitchen operations. In a larger hotel kitchen there tends to be fixed sections and departments, such as pastry, bakery and butchery, while in a smaller kitchen one improvises and makes do with all sections either as one or sharing space. He cooked his first complete meal at 12 with the supervision of his mother.  However his role model is fellow chef Antoine Simoen, an older friend who he met at the hotel school. Mr Simoen is a skilled chef who had received many of his qualifications at a young age; a fact Joel greatly admires and respects.  Joel hopes to emulate his friend and match his skill and enthusiasm for the business.  The aim is to not only be a good chef but to also be able to manage a kitchen efficiently is terms of planning, management and costing.   When asked what ingredient he couldn’t do without when cooking, Joel talks about the experiences gained through years of cooking and the importance of being able to adapt.  This may be an issue of availability but more important, is customer preference or allergies, and as such the chef must be willing and able to improvise and create a fabulous meal despite the

restrictions. Joel says “it’s not about doing without but rather adapting to what you can use’’. In Seychelles, Joel finds some prefer curries, while others enjoy roasts, but the overall favourites are the fish dishes and the variety of pickles and chutney’s on offer.  In fact many guests ask for the recipes, which Joel gladly gives but offers alternative ingredients depending where the client is from, so that the end product is as close as possible to the pickles or chutney sampled. Admirably at Ephelia’s Seselwa restaurant they are working hard to build an all-Seychellois team and promote creole food while bringing the same up to international levels, both in the cooking and preparation of the food as well as the presentation, which is just as important. To the up and coming Seychellois, Joel says don’t give up, follow your dreams, step forward, take a leap of faith and work very hard. Joel Constance is a local role model for all Seychellois.

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LE DUC DE PRASLIN HOTEL BAGS

TWO TOP AWARDS FROM TRIPADVISOR Le Duc de Praslin Hotel and Café des Arts have been singled out with two top awards, by the popular online travel forum Tripadvisor. The “Hall of Fame” award is discerned to establishments that have won the “Certificate of Excellence” for five consecutive years in a row. Both establishments are homegrown, Seychellois owned, boasting a 100% complement of local staff and have been winning several accolades over the years since its complete renovation and refurbishment a few years ago. Le Duc de Praslin also won the prestigious SCCI Business award for ‘Best Hotel Establishment’ when the award was first launched in 2013. Le Duc de Praslin today boasts 43 rooms that cater specifically for honeymooners, families and couples in search of an authentic, genuine Seychellois hospitality. The 4 star hotel offers 3 dining outlets and

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3 bars. Besides the seafood fine dining Café des Arts, Le Duc’s main restaurant “Le Dauphin” proposes Creole Fusion cuisine while the recent addition, “Chill Out” tapas lounge bar offers tapas meals from around the world and a fine selection of cocktails, beers and wines and is now the number 1 entertainment spot of Praslin. “We are delighted to receive these two awards from a reputable travel forum like Tripadvisor. It is further proof that Le Duc de Praslin & Café des Arts are maintaining the high standards which make all homegrown Seychellois tourism establishments proud and that we are also up there in the big league! I dedicate this achievement to all my hard working and dedicated staff who have made us all proud”, commented Robert Payet, the General Manager of both establishments.


Do you think you know Seychelles?

Where was this taken? Send your answer to email ineke@seychellespublications. com along with why you love Seychelles in 200 words and you could win a Seychelles memorabilia from the Seychelles Tourism Board. Good Luck!

Where Am I? Go to www.seychelles.travel

and download your own digital copy

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HONORARY CONSULS

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE KINGDOM OF NETHERLANDS AND DEAN OF THE CONSULAR CORPS Sunset Beach Hotel, Glacis, P. O. Box 372, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 426 12 00 / (248) 426 11 11 Fax №: (+248) 426 12 21

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE KINGDOM OF DENMARK BODCO Building, New Port, P. O. Box 270, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 428 57 00

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE KINGDOM OF SWEDEN BODCO Building, New Port, P. O. Box 270, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 428 57 00 Fax №: (+248) 422 40 65

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE KINGDOM OF SPAIN c/o Hunt Deltel, Trinity House, P. O. Box 14, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 438 03 00 Fax №: (+248) 422 53 67

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF GERMANY The Centre for Environment and Education, Nature Seychelles, Roche Caiman, P. O. Box 1310, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 460 11 00 Fax №: (+248) 460 11 02

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE SULTANATE OF OMAN c/o BMI Offshore Bank, P. O. Box 672, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 432 56 60 Fax №: (+248) 432 54 90

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE ITALIAN REPUBLIC c/o Kreolor, Le Rocher, P. O. Box 499, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 434 45 51 Fax №: (+248) 434 47 54

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE REPUBLIC OF INDONESIA c/o Tirant Associates, Room 104, 1st Floor, Ocean Gate House, P. O. Box 31, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 422 48 35 / 422 50 77 Fax №: (+248) 422 51 56

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE KINGDOM OF MOROCCO c/o Allied Builders (Seychelles) Limited, Les Mamelles, P.O. Box 215, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 438 07 00 Fax №: (+248) 434 45 60

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE REPUBLIC OF MAURITIUS Conservation Centre, Roche Caiman, P. O. Box 1310, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 460 11 00 / (248) 460 11 01 Fax №: (+248) 278 01 42

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE REPUBLIC OF HUNGARY c/o 7° South, Kingsgate House, Independence Avenue, P. O. Box 475, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 429 28 00 Fax №: (+248) 429 28 99

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF SRI LANKA Serret Road, St. Louis, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 251 52 00

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WITH JURISDICTIONS IN THE SEYCHELLES

HONORARY CONSUL OF SWITZERLAND MG Building, Providence Industrial Estate, P. O. Box 935, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 437 42 78 Fax №: (+248) 437 43 04

HONORARY CONSUL OF SERBIA Glacis, P. O. Box 1001, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 426 11 75 Fax №: (+248) 441 06 00

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE REPUBLIC OF FINLAND Fisherman’s Cove Estate, House No.69, Bel Ombre, P. O. Box 1191, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 271 98 30

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE KINGDOM OF THAILAND BODCO Building, New Port, P. O. Box 933, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (248) 422 45 47 Fax №: (+248) 432 38 88

HONORARY CONSUL OF SLOVAC REPUBLIC c/o Creole Travel Services, Orion Mall Building, P. O. Box 611, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 429 70 00 Fax №: (+248) 422 58 17

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE REPUBLIC OF CYPRUS AND DEAN OF THE CONSULAR CORPS SkyChef, Seychelles Airport, P. O. Box 450, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 437 30 50 / 437 31 55 / 438 17 50 Fax №: (+248) 437 34 56

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE KINGDOM OF BELGIUM 1st Floor, Eden Marina House, Eden Island, Roche Caiman, P. O. Box 232, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 434 61 61 / (+248) 251 11 05 Fax №: (+248) 434 61 00

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA Quincy Street, P. O. Box 88, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 432 26 39 Fax №: (+248) 432 61 00

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE HELLENIC REPUBLIC (Greece) Docklands Building, New Port, P. O .Box 743, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 271 51 96

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE REPUBLIC OF MALDIVES P. O. Box 63, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 424 71 77 Fax №: (+248) 424 76 76

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE KINGDOM OF NORWAY Office C3, Trainon Apts, Serret Road, St. Louis, P. O. Box 723, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 251 22 20

HONORARY CONSUL OF THE REPUBLIC OF KOREA (South Korea) New Port, P. O. Box 222, Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 429 06 00 Fax: (+248) 422 44 56

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RESIDENT FOREIGN AMBASSADOR HIGH COMMISSIONERS IN SEYCHELLES HIGH COMMISSION OF INDIA Francis Rachel Street P. O. Box 488 Victoria, Mahé Tel № : (+248) 461 03 01 Fax №: (+248) 461 03 08

EMBASSY OF THE PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA St. Louis P. O. Box 680 Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 467 17 00 Fax №: (+248) 467 17 30

BRITISH HIGH COMMISSION 3rd Floor, Oliaji Trade Centre, P. O. Box 161w Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 428 36 66 Fax №: (+248) 428 36 57

AMBASSADE DE FRANCE 1er Etage, La Ciotat, Mont Fleuri P. O. Box 478 Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 438 25 00 Fax №: (+248) 438 25 10

EMBASSY OF THE REPUBLIC OF CUBA Bel Eau P. O. Box 730 Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 422 40 94

EMBASSY OF THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION Le Niole, St. Louis P. O. Box 632 Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 426 65 90 Fax №: (+248) 426 66 53

AMBASSADE DE L’ORDRE SOUVERAIN MILITAIRE DE MALTE Clarence House, Vista Bay Estate Glacis P. O. Box 642 Victoria, Mahé Tel № : (+248) 426 11 37 Fax № : (+248) 426 11 37

EMBASSY OF LIBYA Transvaal House, Beau Vallon P. O. Box 1177 Victoria, Mahé Tel №: (+248) 462 06 67 Fax №: (+248) 462 04 44

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SEYCHELLES DIPLOMATIC MISSIONS ABROAD BELGIUM Embassy of the Republic of Seychelles 1st Floor, 28 Boulevard Saint Michel Box 23, 1040 Brussels, Belgium Telephone №: (322) 733 60 55 Telefax №: (322) 732 60 22 Email: brussels@seychellesgov.com

PEOPLE’S REPUBLIC OF CHINA Embassy of the Republic of Seychelles Room 1105, The Spaces № 8 Dongdaqiao Rd, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100020 People’s Republic of China Telephone №: (8610) 5870 1192 Telefax №: (8610) 5870 1219 Email: amb.legall@yahoo.com

ETHIOPIA Embassy of the Republic of Seychelles Bole, Woreda 13, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Telephone №: (25111) 62 97 721 Email: j.nourrice@gmail.com

FRANCE Ambassade de la République des Seychelles 51, Avenue Mozart, 75016 Paris, France Numéro de téléphone: (331) 42 30 57 47 Numéro de téléfax: (331) 42 30 57 40 Email: contact@ambsey.fr

GENEVA Permanent Mission to the UN Office and other International Organisations in Geneva Chemin Louis-Dunant 15b, 1202 Geneva Switzerland Telephone №: (41) 22 730 17 28 Telefax №: (41) 22 730 17 29 Email: geneva@seymission.ch

INDIA High Commission of the Republic of Seychelles F-4, Anand Niketan New Delhi – 110 021, India Telephone №: (9111) 241 141 02 Telefax №: (9111) 241 141 03 Email: seychelleshighcommission@gmail.com

INDIAN OCEAN ISLANDS Ambassador of the Republic of Seychelles to the Indian Ocean Islands Maison Quéau de Quinssy, P. O. Box 656 Mont Fleuri, Mahé, Seychelles Telephone №: (248) 428 35 00 Telefax №: (248) 422 48 45 Email: cdoffay@mfa.gov.sc

SOUTH AFRICA Seychelles High Commission Unit D 02/01, The Village, Cnr Gleenwood & Oberon Avenue, Faerie Glen, 0043 Pretoria, Republic of South Africa Telephone №: (27) 12 34 80 270 (27) 12 34 80 720 Telefax №: (27) 12 34 069 Email: sez@seychelleshc.co.za

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES Embassy of the Republic of Seychelles Villa № 6/1, Murror Area, 23rd Street, P. O. Box 43107, Abu Dhabi United Arab Emirates Telephone №: (9712) 491 77 55 Telefax №: (9712) 491 77 14/18 Email: seychellesembuae@gmail.com

UNITED KINGDOM OF GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND High Commission of the Republic of Seychelles 4th Floor, 11 Grosvenor Crescent, London SW1X 7EE, England Telephone №: (44) 207 245 06 80 Telefax №: (44) 207 235 75 09 Email: seyhc.london@btconnect.com

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Embassy of the Republic of Seychelles Suite 400C, 4th Floor 800 Second Avenue New York, NY 10017 United States of America Telephone №: (1212) 972 1785 Telefax №: (1212) 972 1786 Email: seychelles@un.int

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Climate Change and Small Island Developing State Issues c/o Permanent Mission of the Republic of Seychelles to the United Nations, Suite 400C 4th Floor, 800 Second Avenue New York, NY 10017 United States of America Telephone №: (1212) 972 1785 Telefax №: (1212) 972 1786 Email: seychelles@un.int

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Seychelles Tourist Offices & Representatives Worldwide HEADQUARTERS Chief Executive Officer Seychelles Tourism Board P.O. Box 1262 • Victoria Mahé • Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4 671 300 Fax: (+248) 4 620 620 / (+248) 4 620 640 e-mail: info@seychelles.travel sherin.naiken@seychelles.travel SEYCHELLES NEWS BUREAU Seychelles Tourism Board Bel Ombre, P.O. Box 1262 Victoria, Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4 671 300 Fax: (+248) 4 620 620 glynn.burridge@seychelles.travel lena.hoareau@uksto.co.uk E-MARKETING Seychelles Tourism Board Bel Ombre, P.O. Box 1262 Victoria, Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4 671 300 Fax: (+248) 4 620 620 email: info@seychelles.travel www.seychelles.travel FRANCE Office du Tourisme des Seychelles 18 Rue de Mogador - 75009 Paris • France Tel: (+33) 1 44 53 93 20 Fax: (+33) 1 44 53 93 32 e-mail: info-tourisme.fr@seychelles.travel GERMANY Seychelles Tourist Office Hochstrasse 17 60313 Frankfurt am Main • Germany Tel: +49 (0) 69 297 207 89 Fax: +49 (0) 69 297 207 92 e-mail: info@seychelles-service-center.de

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ITALY Seychelles Tourism Board Via Pindaro 28N Axa• 00125 Rome Italy Tel: + 39 06 50 90 135  Fax: + 39 06 50 93 52 01 e-mail: info-turismo.it @seychelles.travel MIDDLE EAST Mohamed Al Geziry Consultancy 100 Al Fattan Plaza • P.O. Box 36345 Dubai • U.A.E. Tel: (+971) 4 2865586 Fax: (+971) 4 2865589 e-mail: info-tourism.me@ seychelles.travel SPAIN Calle princesa, 40 28008 Madrid • Spain Tel: (+34) 91 702 08 04 Fax: (+34) 91 702 23 74 e-mail: info@turismoseychelles.com SOUTH AFRICA Cape Holiday Services 36 Union Road • Milnerton 7441 Capetown South Africa Tel: (+27) 21 551 5855 Fax: (+27) 21 551 5898 e-mail: seychelles@stoza.com SOUTH KOREA #411, Doosan We’ve Pavillion 58 Susong-dong • Jongno-gu Seoul • South Korea Tel: +82 2 737 3235 Fax: +82 2 737 3236 e-mail: consul@seychellestour.co.kr sey@seychellestour.co.kr

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UNITED KINGDOM Seychelles Tourist Office Fourth Floor, 130-132 Buckingham Palace Road, London, SW1W 9SA United Kingdom Tel: +44 (0) 20 724 561 06 e-mail: info-tourism.uk @seychelles.travel CHINA Seychelles Tourism Board #8 Dongdaqiao Road, The Spaces Chaoyang District, Room 1105 Beijing, 100020 China Tel: +8610 5870 1192 Fax: +8610 5870 1219 e-mail: lrjll.sey@gmail.com ABU DHABI Embassy of the Republic of Seychelles, Villa number 6/1, Plot number 8, Muroor Area, Street 23 Abu Dhabi, UAE.Tel: + 00971 2 4917755 Fax: +971 2 4917718 e-mail: aliette.esther@seychelles.travel RUSSIA Access Russia Vorotnikovskiy Lane 8, bld. 1 of 12 1270006 Moscow Russia Tel: (7) 495 699 9351 Email: erussiayanova@accessrussia.ru SOUTH AMERICA BRAZIL Global Vision Access Rua Manoel da Nobrega 111# 41 Paraiso, Sao Paolo SP 04001-080 Brazil Tel: (55) 11 2367.3170 Fax: (55) 11 99627.3160 Email: gisele@globalvisionaccess.com


Contacts PHONE OPERATORS

EMERGENCY

AIRLINES

Cable & Wireless (Seychelles) Ltd. Francis Rachel Street Victoria P.O. Box 4 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4284000 Fax: (+248) 4322777 W: www.cwseychelles.com

Central Police Station Victoria P.O. Box 46 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 428000 Fax: (+248) 4224412 Emergency: 999 Hotline: 133 / 112 E: office@police.gov.sc W: www.police.gov.sc

Emirates Airline Caravelle House Victoria P.O. Box 152 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4292700 / 4373008 E: ekseychelles@emirates.com W: www.emirates.com

Airtel Telecom (Seychelles) Emerald Building Providence P.O. Box 1358 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4600600 Fax: (+248) 4601602 W: www.africa.airtel.com/seychelles AIR SEYCHELLES Air Seychelles Ltd. (International & Domestic) Head Office Seychelles International Airport Pointe Larue P.O. Box 386 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4391000 Fax: (+248) 4391229 E: webinfo@airseychelles.com W: www.airseychelles.com Praslin Airport Amitié Praslin P.O. Box 386 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4284666 Fax: (+248) 4233055 International Flight Information Seychelles International Airport Point Larue P.O. Box 386 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4391200 Fax: (+248) 4391229 Immigration Office (Airport) Seychelles International Airport Pointe Larue P.O. Box 430 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 2713193 E: asupervisor@gov.sc

Baie St. Anne Police Station Baie St. Anne Praslin P.O. Box 46 Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4232332 Fax: (+248) 4232075 E: baiestanne-stn@seypolice.sc W: www.police.gov.sc Grand Anse Police Station Grand Anse Praslin P.O. Box 46 Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4233251 Fax: (+248) 4233933 E: grandanse-stn@seypolice.sc W: www.police.gov.sc La Digue Police Station La Passe, La Digue P.O. Box 46 Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4234251 Fax: (+248) 4234031 E: ladigue-stn@seypolice.sc W: www.police.gov.sc Seychelles Hospital Mt. Fleuri P.O. Box 52 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4388000 Fax: (+248) 4388000 E: office@moh.gov.sc W: www.health.gov.sc Baie Ste Anne Praslin Hospital: 4233414 Logan La Digue Hospital : 4234255

Ambulance 151

Kenya Airways Kingsgate Travel Centre Independence Avenue Victoria P.O. Box 288 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4323903 Fax: (+248) 4324162 E: sez.sales@kenya-airways.com W: www.kenya-airways.com Ethiopian Airline Mason’s Travel Building Revolution Avenue Victoria P.O. Box 459 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4288907 E: marenaud@masonstravel.com W: www.ethiopianairlines.com ZIL AIR Zil Air (Pty) Ltd. Pointe Larue P.O. Box 1110 Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (+248) 4375100 Fax: (+248) 4375101 E: info@zilair.com book@zilair.com W: www.zilair.com FERRY Cat Cocos Ferry - Inter Island Boats Ltd Po Box 356 Kingsgate House,Victoria, Mahé, Seychelles Tel: (248) 4297164 Fax: (+248) 4324845 Reservation: (+248) 4324843 Email: reservation@catcocos.com W: www.catcocos.com Praslin to La Digue Ferry Inter Island Ferry Ltd Tel: (+248) 4322329

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Profile for Ineke Bakker-Camille

Sesel sa! 8th issue July to September 2015  

Quarterly magazine on Seychelles Tourism commissioned by Seychelles Tourism Board and produced by Paradise Promotions

Sesel sa! 8th issue July to September 2015  

Quarterly magazine on Seychelles Tourism commissioned by Seychelles Tourism Board and produced by Paradise Promotions

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