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A healing holiday at The Station

Le Duc

The man at the helm Know your monuments Victoria and her stories

What’s in a dress?



The Cover was shot on location at the most soothing and enchanting of places – The Station Retreat Hotel. Offering wellness services, The Station now offers retreats called ‘From Abundance to Balance’. For more information please read our article on page 4 and their advert that follows it. As a gentle guide, we share with you the 7 days of Virtues as practices by The Station Retreat Hotel and its followers. Value 52.50 Euros

Special offer to Sesel Sa! readers who book the retreat.

NOURISHED by NATURE Anti Ageing pack Formulated and produced by natural healers and homeopaths at the island’s premier botanical health apothecary. Surrounded by abundant nature in Sans Souci, we honour age-old holistic principles using nature and science to support balance, wellbeing and to nurture your energetic life force at all times.

Cover Details; Suzanne Verlaque Photographer | Stephanie Savy Model | The Station Retreat Hotel, Sans Soucis Location

Foreword by Sherin Naiken CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board With every edition of Sesel Sa! that comes off the press, I see an improvement in the look, feel and content of this publication that we proudly call the Voice of Seychelles’ Tourism. Every edition leaves me with the impression of a process of fine-tuning that is gradually tweaking Sesel Sa! into a first class tourism magazine. We live in an age when information has become a virtual currency, the accuracy and speed of transmission of which plays a vital role in the visibility of our products in a crowded and ever more competitive market place, determining to a large measure how successful they are. I am encouraged to see how Sesel Sa! is tracking the progress of Seychelles tourism, continuing to keep its finger on the pulse of what is taking place across a broad spectrum of activities to keep the reader up to speed on the latest happenings, events and developments in this fast moving and highly organic industry. As our tourism evolves, so the range of products and services available to travellers becomes more extensive and this edition showcases certain of those, pointing to how the industry is setting down roots into a vast web of human activities that adds value to vacations and deepens travellers’ experiences  of the destination, which is a proven formula for tourism success.

Sherin Naiken CEO




Le Duc, Praslin

1...................... CEO foreward/editor 4...................... A healing holiday in Seychelles 10................... True North - a look at North Island Resort 18................... Book review - 3 new books share island love 21................... The power of the Sun 24................... Vanilla Islands - the New President and his thoughts 25................... E-Marketing - STB's initiatives 28................... Dance of the KanKan - a local brand with international standing 34................... Local snacks - a tasty bite

40................... Eden Bleu - a new hotel 43................... Dining discoveries 48................... Lavige Reisin 50................... Star Crossed - Le Duc hospitality 55................... In the News 59................... The Black Parrot 62................... Miss Seychelles 2014 64................... Featured beach 65................... Monuments of Victoria 74................... Turtle special 79................... Maps of Seychelles 84................... Contacts 88................... STO Contacts

Sesel Sa! is a joint collaboration with STB and Paradise Promotions Ltd.

For more information with regards to advertising and editorial, please contact; Ineke Camille | E: ineke@seychellespublications.com | Tel: +2482520937 Marie France Watson | E: marie-france@seychellespublications.com | Tel: +2482512477 Graphic Design and Layout | Olivia Michaud | E: info@angelcreativedesign.com Photographer | Suzanne Verlaque | E: studio@seychellespublications.com Published by Paradise Promotions Ltd. P.O Box 1539, MahĂŠ, Seychelles Printed by ATLAS Printing Press LLC.



Sesel Sa Magazine

Holiday in healing Seychelles

By Nathalie Hodgson ‘The world is evolving from an age of control to an age of possibility; you can make the shift within yourself right now’ – Jenny Gilbert, Founder, Owner, The Station Seychelles.

Sounds intriguing? We thought so. Enter Seychelles' first 'healing hotel', an eclectic, interesting 'destination' centre and model for recycling and restoration which, on arrival, instantly draws one into its heart, tweaking one's sense of curiosity and anticipation.

Feeling stuck, wiped out by the daily grind of work and responsibility or aware that you have simply been neglecting your inner voice that is now affecting your sense of perspective? What better way to have a chilled holiday in paradise than to visit one of the newest entries onto the hospitality scene in Seychelles. Have your cake and eat it too!

Without knowing what The Station Retreat Hotel is all about, one could easily be enchanted by its architecturally exciting, quietly stylish ambience that surprises the eye at each turn. But don't let that fool you. At its core The Station has a passionate, focused purpose: to help anyone who enters its doors to embrace the safe, gentle healing art of



vibrational medicine. Here a small, dedicated team of homeopathic doctors and energy therapists with a wealth of experience in their respective fields work tirelessly to encourage and support guests to embrace their vibrantly healthy selves. After taking over the landmark, the old 'Feba Radio Station' in 1998 to set up Seychelles' first natural health manufacturing company, Jenny Gilbert then pioneered Homeopathy in Seychelles when she opened Lily Moon back in 2001, a 'living homeopathy' health and gift shop. Combining years of work in the natural and energy healing fields with intuition and knowledge obtained through a lifetime of exposure to living with homeopathy, Jenny has poured her passion for energy healing into serving people. From offering organic petro-chemical free candles, healing lotions and potions for almost every requirement, perfumery and spa therapy products to homeopathic remedies and homeopathic consulting services, it is no surprise that The Station's more than 5,000 patients on record are more empowered to easily tune into vibrant health. It was only a matter of time before the word got out of The Seychelles and people wanted more. 'While our retreat packages always follow the same format with Jenny's innovative VIRTUES programme as a prop, each individual receives specific attention according to their circumstances. We don't need or expect our guests to change anything at all but to allow possibilities to flow into their days at The Station. All they need is the will to enjoy a great holiday and to embrace the concepts and services we offer here.

Early in the stay there is a consultation and from there the programme is tailored, the course is set and the healing begins'. Dr Apurva Tamhane, The Station's resident Homeopath says. “Our 7 day Move in Virtues Retreat is well worth considering if you are looking to make the most of your hard-earned holiday time. Here feeling better and having a wonderful holiday go hand in hand.” Sounds great we thought, concluding that if you want to meditate all day, or sip virgin cocktails under a palm tree, that's what you can do as long as you start your day with the Move in Virtues session, attend the consultation, arrive at the spa for treatments and mindful processes that are plotted in your programme. What a luxury! Nancy Gosling from the United Kingdom wrote in the feedback guestbook, ‘Nothing could have prepared me for what I thought was simply going to be a relaxed, chilled holiday in Seychelles with a few massages and yoga sessions thrown in. My experience at The Station is indescribable. I could find my own rhythm and pace within your sanctuary without pressure. Although I loved my trips to the beautiful beaches, I always felt better arriving back at 'home'. Finally I can now sleep and feel worthwhile again which I haven't for such a long time’. There is no TV on the property and Wi-Fi, while available throughout the estate, is on request only. “We want you to consciously consider going online and ask yourself why you need to do so before you do. Slipping into habits and routines from home won't provide the shift in gear needed to move towards balanced health. By removing the enabling devices that keep you stuck, we help our guests to identify their priorities, to listen to their inner voice, enabling their own instinctive healing as they do.”



you down and prevents you from really thriving”. The Station Retreat Hotel sits proudly on the main mountain pass of Sans Souci within close proximity of Victoria and the Port Launay marine park. The retreat packages include daily transfers to the beaches and mountain hikes so there is no need to hire a car.

The Station Retreat Hotel is always open to anyone simply wanting a holiday in a quiet, tranquil environment away from the heat of the beaches without taking a retreat package. “For those who want a short break and some nurturing support all intertwined into a relaxing weekend, we offer a 2.5 day retreat that sets some foundations for taking responsibility for your health and having some fun doing it.” Apurva explains. “We aim to bring to consciousness that which has become unconscious, help lift that heavy energy that weighs

The hotel has six rooms and a villa, all drawing on the timeless island charm of a bygone French-colonial era. These are ideally located around the pool with lounging benches, day beds and deck chairs and face the pavilion where the 'Move in Virtues' sessions and many of the consciousliving activities are hosted. All the rooms reflect the owner's commitment to mindfulness through the “less is more”, pared-back theme. ‘The rooms have been specifically designed to be canvases with minimal decor, no paintings, no distractions’ Jenny, The Founder, explains. ‘Here we want you to listen to the birds, the approaching rain coming over the mountain, the fruit bats fighting in the mango trees. You can swing into island living - be awakened by the roosters that always gets the time wrong, the local bus that passes on the hour at the front of the Station and our neighbours' cows and goats all competing for a little attention’. Cradled by mountains that make Sans Souci the most beautiful pass on Mahé, your gaze is drawn to



the ocean and the inner islands of Round, Moyenne, Cerf, St Anne, Long, Praslin, La Digue, Fregate with spectacular views from the café and pavilion. With attention to detail to maximize your comfort, staff go that extra mile to maintain an authentic but quality level of service, without cramping your style, imposing on your privacy or compromising the ethos to protect the environment within and without. ‘Anyone, at anytime, can choose to 'retreat' for any reason whatsoever and for as long or as short as necessary or desired’ Jenny explains. ‘Our role is to kick-start the process of awakening your inner healing system, provide a safe, comfortable, easy-going space to support you while offering suggestions to infuse one's normal lifestyle with some incredibly valuable wellbeing habits. On request we then follow up after departure. An energetic shift can take a moment, a weekend, a week or more. Our customized packages combine various energy healing modalities to literally tune your 'station' to be more clear, paving the way for your vital healing system to take over the reigns. It's a beautiful way to pamper yourself - and your body, mind and soul will start thanking you for this support the moment your holiday starts'.



Jenny and her partner have created a unique 'homefrom-home' space, with a little luxury thrown in, where personalized retreats tailored to individual needs set the stage for continued appreciation and application of an energy-based wellbeing lifestyle once back home. After days of stillness and contemplation you may find that you have worked up the courage to find out how free you really are and will want to learn more about how to live consciously. Dare to follow your dreams and take the adventure, enrich your life with abundance, joy, happiness, and fulfillment. The Station Retreat Hotel will show you the way to get there.

For more information and to book “your� Retreat you can contact The Station on: + 248 4224203; email reservations@thestationseychelles.com or visit www.thestationseychelles.com



By Nathalie Hodgson

On maps published by geological surveyors, true north is marked with a line terminating in a five-pointed star. This detail is added as the world drawn up along rectangle gridlines cannot properly capture the Earth’s curvature. So for us to orientate to true north, we must look beyond our conventional frames of reference. While you won’t have difficulty locating North Island on a map, you will need to re-define your idea of natural luxury and be prepared to join a guest list which includes celebrities and most recently Prince William and Kate Middleton. But it isn't simply luxury and privacy that guests are paying for. General Manager Wayne Milgate explains how their island experience goes beyond your normal celebrity hot spot break.



North Island - renowned as one of the world's most expensive barefoot retreats, continuously hitting front page news as the first choice holiday destination for the rich and famous. Booked by all genre of stars and Royalty, it is for those who seek more privacy and space in this ever crowded and commoditized world. Everyone has seen the breathtaking front page covers on Conde Nast Traveller or National Geographic magazines of the cowrie-shell fronds as bathroom doors, the four-posted bedrooms with driftwood pillars and Ylang Ylang roofing or the upside down tree trunk pillar structures of each villa. But what is it that makes North Island so different to other luxury high price getaways? ‘We don’t really have a competitor that I can mention, our product is truly unique. Guests really receive a bespoke experience. They enjoy total privacy and space and the best part is, that there are no rules. What does that mean, well there are no meal times, no spa times, no restaurant venues even. Guests choose when, where and how all the time’, explains Wayne Milgate the General Manager of North Island.

the impressive wine cellar. I had a guest recently that wanted spaghetti bolognaise on the beach, toes in the sand, in shorts and casual t-shirt with his EURO1200 bottle of wine, watching the stars and listening to the waves with his wife. He said ‘there is no better place to have your spaghetti than under the stars in Seychelles. Sometimes, simplicity is magic.’

‘You personally discuss your preferences with the butler and have a daily menu created just for you. Everything we develop is personalized, so no day is the same and so the staff and I can be really creative, with initiatives for each guest accordingly to their personal tastes. We brainstorm each request and add to it what they want. They love the ideas and want more the next day’ Wayne continues.

Wayne has been managing North Island for one year now. After being in Fiji for five years he is no stranger to resort island management. Now however he has fewer villas and a ratio of 11 staff per villa, which is one of the highest in the world. ‘There is no doubt that logistics is the daily challenge, continually shipping in ingredients and produce over the sea and by air is non-stop. The weather conditions and variety of dietary requests from all around the world keeps you on your toes! We also like to maintain the high service ethos within the staff community. We see ourselves as the ‘Employer of Choice’ for Seychelles. We continue to develop a service culture for the staff family. One of our priority goals is to look after our staff. A strong service culture with each other first is what we are fostering and then to bring that ethos to work every day, that translates to the guests; makes for a brilliant team. This year the community theme is ‘We make the difference’. In this theme we emphasis that each and every staff member and his actions, thoughts and attitude make North Island what it is. Without them there are no satisfied guests, nor repeat customers. Engagement with guests is the pillar of service for North Island so it needs to always be outstanding’.

The North Island staff are very familiar with creating memorable moments relevant and unique to the island and to Seychelles. Guests are exposed to learning, experiencing and tasting the country as well as enjoying their holiday. For example with the menu planning they promote the selection of locally caught seafood, as well as creole flavors, spices and herbs as preference. Guests wake up and have their 4wd electric buggy to discover the island or they can choose a variety of other activities such as boating, fishing, biking or snorkeling or join an environmental tour learning the ecological conservation programs of the island. Most of the time high profile guests are always in the spot light, on their best behavior, acting like they are supposed to’ says Agelin Saunders, a long term employee of island.’ But here they can be themselves, relaxed and safe, followed by the luxury they are accustomed to’. ‘Some guests don’t want anything’ Wayne adds. ’They would rather just lounge on the beach, or hit



The most popular feedback from guests is that they don’t see anyone else on the island and continually ask staff how many guests are in-house as they have not met anyone else. They strolled the entire island, (only 1 km in length and a half in width) discovering the secluded beaches, walking amongst the tortoises, snorkeling on the reefs and have biked up to the highest point of the island, in total privacy. The common farewell comment we receive is, ‘I really felt like Robinson Crusoe. The closest I will ever get to have an island home two steps away from the seashore, in barefoot luxury’ says Angelin. The focus for Wayne in 2014 is the refurbishment project that will see quite a few upgrades and renovations of the villas and public areas before June. This will be continued with front and back-of-house refurbishments of all the wooden areas. They are also in preliminary discussions on larger three bedroom villas to be located on other side of the island, to accommodate the larger families such as Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt: a regular visiting tribe!

Following the standards of their eco-sensitive lodge profile, they have implemented another alternative energy program that will be rolled-out in three phases over the next two years. This will entail installing weather stations around the island to capture data intelligence on where to install the most appropriate energy capturing devices. The installation of LED lighting for every light bulb and new and improved generators to hold the captured energy; for example the new air-conditioning systems will capture the excess heat (that normally escape through the vents into the atmosphere), that will in turn be used to heat up the hot water cylinders for the villas. ‘Reducing our energy consumption every year is the way forward and this is the plan’ Wayne remarks. Another emphasis and ongoing goal for the North Island management is the rehabilitation project, the end result being to bring the island back to its original state. After a decline in the coconut industry in the 1970s, the island began to degrade into a haven for invasive species of plants and animals, and began to lose the inhabitants that made it the perfect paradise. ‘When Wilderness Safaris took over the island 12 years ago, it was totally overrun. Through our program called Noah’s Ark, conservationists are re-introducing indigenous tortoises, birds and plants to restore the habitat for these many disappearing species native to the Seychelles’ says conservationist Eliott Mokhobo .’ This is a long term initiative; that has taken years of painstaking research and co-ordination with government bodies to ensure the protection of the natural environment and biodiversity’. The intrusive species such as cows, rats, pigs, cats, barn owls, coconuts, casuarinas trees, and destructive



weeds took a stronghold on the indigenous plants and birdlife of North. The conscientious pursuit of eradication and conservative building techniques, such as the installation of ecological sensitive sewerage system on day one, is now reaping rewards. ‘We are now totally rat-free, that has paved the way for the return of the Black Paradise Flycatcher, the Seychelles Warbler and the Seychelles Magpie Robin (one of the rarest birds in the world). We are very happy with these results’ says Eliott. ‘ The on-going process of conservation is at the heart of the islands’ philosophy, but is by no means a cheap endeavor. ‘The unique selling-point of the North Island experience is that guests can feel good about themselves while having a luxurious holiday, knowing that their money is funding an important ecological experiment which is saving several endangered species from extinction’ remarks Eliott. North island will continue to honour the policies that are enabling it to realize its goal of offering the highest standards of hospitality against a backdrop of sustainable, ecofriendly practice’ Eliott states. It is not just conservation that highlights the Noah’s Ark program but the educational element too. In December 2013, North closed its doors to paying guests to host a group of 29 Seychellois children on an educational, fun and rewarding ‘Children in the Wilderness’ (CITW) camp. The camp offered 25 rural children from Mahé and four from Praslin a lifechanging conservation experience. A full programme was put together to ensure that they were able to experience the wonders of North, whilst at the same time learning about the importance of island and ocean conservation and its relevance in their lives. Activities included singing, dancing, tree planting, role plays, charting, drawing, team building, scuba diving and tug of war, as well as various life skills lessons to encourage them to dream, hope and to realise their true potential in making a difference to our world. More importantly they were exposed to the concept of how tourism related projects can work to an advantage to fund environmental goals for the future conservation of Seychelles.



North is a place of pilgrimage for people who love communicating with nature, as well as for sophisticated travelers with all the perks of five star luxury. Only 20 minutes via helicopter or an hour by boat from the main island of Mahe, this island is truly magical. Providing you with an all over holistic and therapeutic make over touching all the senses impeccable natural beauty, psychologically gratifying as you learn how to foster a greater appreciation and protection of our natural habitats for future generations, also spiritually your inner being, long neglected, is rehabilitated, reintroduced and given a place to grow and thrive.



A romantic sanctuary, which should be placed on everybody’s bucket list, or more immediately for those more fortunate folk. Villas No 1 to 10 on North Island cost from £1,855 per person per night, all-inclusive; Villa 11 costs from £2,930, through Wilderness Safaris on + 27 11 807 1800 or www.north-island.com To learn more about: Children in the Wilderness www.childreninthewilderness.com Wilderness Collection www.wilderness-collection.com

Flying you to the city of

light & love



Out And About Calendar of Events 2014

If you’re looking for more than sun, sea and sand, plan your holiday with our exciting upcoming events, to experience an additional touch of culture, and local entertainment.

Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival 8 - 9 August 2014

With the first festival held in 2013, this year’s festival aims to further promote the plight of this beautiful animal and the dangers they face of extinction. As like last year, the festival will be held on Beau vallon Beach. For more information, please go to page 74.

South East Monsoon Sailfish Tournament 9th August 2014

A yearly event on the fishing calendar, Marine Charter once again hosts the 1-day trolling only tournament from 0300hrs to 1700hrs. Join Seychelles Sports Fishing Club facebook page for rules, registration forms and all your sports fishing information at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/ seychellesfishing/ or contact us by email: ssfcmail@gmail.com. Team Scorpion, last year's champion of the SSFC SE Monsoon Sailfish Tournament, looks to retain the title in the always challenging tournament. Anglers will not only put their fishing knowledge to the test but will also be forced to deal with the treacherous SE Monsoon. Join them for the weigh-in event at Marine Charter Association on Saturday, 9th of August, 2014.



Seychelles round table regatta 26 - 28 September 2014

The Round Table Regatta has become an important national event in the Island’s calendar. The event will span over one weekend, from the 26th to the 28th September 2014 and takes place on the popular Beau Vallon Beach Front, which will be based close to the new Savoy Resort site, and who will participate in this years activities. 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 all-important lottery draw at 1800hrs on Regatta Sunday. Due to popular demand, the Regatta organizers are also pleased to announce the reintroduction of Miss Regatta. Please look out for more details.

Feast of The Assumption of Mary 15th August

Local and International companies alike support the event by manning food and beverage stalls or running promotional stations where the crowds benefit from generous give-aways and reduced prices on goods. All in all, the Round Table Regatta weekend brings many Seychellois and tourists together in a high-spirited, cause-driven event.

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.

Vinayagar Chadurthi September 2014

Celebrated at the Hindu Temple in Victoria, “Vinayaka Chaturthi”, also known as the "festival of Ganesha", marks the birth of Lord Ganesha (the Elephant God). Hindus around the world, mark this day with street processions and idol immersion.

World Tourism Day 27th September

World Tourism Day is celebrated on the 27th September each year. Various activities held in the preceding days create an ideal forum to increase public awareness on the importance of the tourism industry in Seychelles. Contact the Seychelles Tourism Board for details.



town of Greenwich, the culture of east London comes to life. The quays, ships and commerce shows a world far away from tiny Seychelles – but through one important character the connection is made in an important way.

Echoes from the Oasis “Echoes from the Oasis” sets the foundation, and shows what life was like for all the islanders, women in particular. No matter their status, colour or wealth, is is the woman who forms the backbone of this story. This period in our history comes to life, as the joys and struggles play out, entwined into the family Saga/Romance under the tropical sun. Seychelles size and location are prominently featured, showing our importance and connection to the rest of the world. How we came to be, and from where, shows the French colonizing the islands, and the slavery trade exposed. It also shows the French-British war in the Indian Ocean, its consequences for the whole area. From the banks of the River Thames in the garrison

In Particular, the heroics of a great British General and his love and connection with Seychelles, brings the siege of Khartoum into the story, and the mystery of the Garden of Eden and the Coco de Mer are featured. The role of the Catholic church, its positive and negative effects on the lives of everyone is featured throughout. For the decedents of ex-slaves, being a part of the church is their one course of identity, their endorsement as Christians are so important, that they struggle with their own culture. Free education which is provided by the church plays a major role as well, setting the real foundation to the emancipation and the freedom provided by the abolition of slavery. The natural beauty of the islands, the cuisine, the people and the cultures which has come together to make up the “Seychellois” shows a portrait which is rich and vibrant, and totally unique. Through another and important enigmatic character, the history of Ireland during the Potato Famine plays out its deadly horrors, and the consequences which follows in its path comes to a head on Christmas eve in a small hospital under quarantine in Port Victoria. The humble “bread fruit” also an important part during the smallpox epidemic when Seychelles has been quarantined from the rest of the world, and no ship with provision called for months. The real sense of isolation which comes from being an island is truly felt, as the islands and authorities struggled, and the origins of the breadfruit plant takes the story of the plight of Captain Blight and mutiny on the Bounty. The importance of the schooner service between the islands shows the way of life of the time, but also the important lifeline for the commerce and the fragile economy of Seychelles, based entirely on its export crops. The evils of witchcraft, murder and arson, shows the dark and ugly sides of the business rivalry between two important families, and what desperation and hatred can drive us to. While the declaration of the First World War, shows the strong stuff which we are made of, and even if we are tiny, our contributions are mighty. Once again our size and location is foremost, but the evils of war claimed a huge price!! But in the end, it is our faith that holds us together, and the love we have, and have shared, will sustain us for all our tomorrows.



The inspiration behind the stories came from the extraordinary life he led over twenty years on D’arros and the opportunities he had to travel to most of the islands of the archipelago, learning the skills of the ‘ilois’ or islander and becoming familiar with the spirit of Seychelles’ far-flung, island outposts. Now in its third edition, Voices, which is published by Calusa Bay Publications, has undergone a recent facelift complete with new cover, fresh look and feel and additional stories which, together with a short history of the Amirantes Islands, now brings the total number in the collection to 23.

‘Voices’: a compilation of Seychelles short stories By Glynn Burridge

Voices first appeared in 1998 with the title ‘Voices from a Corner of Eden’, the same year the author finally left behind the outer island existence which inspired the book after two decades on D’arros Island, the then private estate of the Iranian Royal family, the Pahlavis. ‘I first came here in 1976, on holiday from Iran where I grew up’, explains the author, ‘little realising that the move would be permanent in 1978 when I would settle on D’arros for good, fleeing the Iranian Revolution.’

‘Back in Iran I was a commercial interpreter/translator and so writing was always there and it did not take me long to realise that if I did put pen to paper on the amazing life we were living on these unique islands, then all record would be lost,’ muses Burridge. ‘And I was not far wrong, because only two decades later and that way of life has, sadly, all but completely disappeared.’ Voices is a collection of short stories that provides the reader with a grand panorama of life in Seychelles and in particular its outer islands. They range from vaguely autobiographical accounts of extraordinary incidents, portraits of colourful, island characters, fantastic fishing yarns and gruesome ghost stories to animal tales, humorous anecdotes and stories of fabulous hidden treasure which take the reader on an unforgettably rich, literary adventure into the twilight of a disappearing world. Favourably reviewed by the BBC’s Artbeat programme, Voices continues to enchant readers with its nostalgic treatment of a vanishing way of life and was recently chosen by author and journalist Anne Morgan as one of her favourite Seychelles books as she ‘read her way around the world’. It will shortly be available again as a paperback in Seychelles and also as a Kindle e-book.



So when the opportunity arose for a Seychelles Dive coffee table project he jumped at the chance. Seychelles: Unexpected Treasures is a 120page edition of breathtakingly beautiful colour photographs.

Seychelles Unexpected Treasures By Nathalie Hodgson

Seychelles is not always preached about as an ultimate dive destination and yet it should be, says Allen Golliner on Scuba Travel UK. It is no wonder that diving specialist and media are now flocking to the untouched waters of Seychelles. With two whale shark seasons and over seven protected marine parks the underwater world of this archipelago is a continuation of its majestic topography of granite rock formations, soft corals and dramatic swim throughs, gullies and rift dives, all of which are home to an abundant array of rare sealife around every corner. As a keen naturalist and diver, renowned Nikon Professional Photographer and Film Lecturer, Imran Ahmad is a Seychelles aficionado, spending trip after trip discovering the many wrecks, diverse fish-life and countless close encounters with turtles, massive rays and small sharks. On these adventures it was not hard to discover the strong eco-tourism marine conservation programmes and initiatives in place and want to contribute. Imran spends much of his time as a lecturer giving presentations and running workshops on conservation, diving, travel, sports photography and cinematography. His photography & cinematography is a lot about anticipating a subject’s movement and body language. ‘There’s no choreographing in underwater photography. Action unfolds before you and at that fraction of a second you either freeze art or it simply vanishes before you and the moment is lost’ he states. As a widely published dive specialist author he has countless leading media attributes including Scuba diving magazine, Sport Diver (USA), Tauchen (Germany ), Unterwasser (Germany), Scuba Diver Australasia, Scuba Diver and CEO Magazine just to name a few.



Co-authored by Seychelles’ Minister for Tourism & Culture, Alain St. Ange and tourism consultant, Glynn Burridge, who have already collaborated on a number of recent coffee table books on the destination including ‘Seychelles State House Centenary of Inauguration’ and the ‘Coco de Mer’, this latest addition to the Seychelles’ Tourism Board’s publications, illustrates the beauty and uniqueness of Seychelles as a dive destination via a selection of stunning photographs accompanied by apt quotes from international personalities. Mr. Ahmad, who is quickly earning a reputation for the sheer wizardry of his photographic technique, travelled as far afield as Aldabra to capture the images in the book; which take the reader on a wonderful journey deep into wrecks and kaleidoscopic schools of fish and into the twilight world of the famous mushroom formations of the Aldabra atoll. The book also contains some exquisite above-water photography of wildlife and the scientific research station of Aldabra. Seychelles: Unexpected Treasures has already been entered into two international book competitions: one for excellence in printing and the other for books on diving and is already being hailed for the quality of its production by several press. “Seychelles: Unexpected Treasures opens the window on the still relatively little known world of diving in Seychelles and the extraordinary diversity it offers on both coral and granitic reefs. Seychelles remains very much a world untouched and our pristine ocean is a sanctuary for many exotic marine species, several of which have found their way into the pages of this new book’, commented Sherin Naiken, CEO of Seychelles Tourism Board.

Harnessing the power of THE SUN Solar energy: one of the most clean, environmentallyfriendly and efficient ways to generate electricity. Harnessing the power of the sun as a natural source of energy is not new. Ancient civilisations - native Americans, Egyptians, Greeks and Romans - all found ways of using solar energy. The Greeks are thought to have been the first to apply passive solar design in their homes, while the Romans would later enhance these designs and be the first to use glass windows to trap solar heat indoors. In recent years, modern technologies have led to exciting new ways of using the sun’s energy and have developed a range of solar powered devices, such as the popular solar powered calculator, solar water heating systems and photovoltaic (PV) technology, which is becoming increasingly popular across the globe.

PV technology enables sunlight to be converted directly into electricity through solar panels. The first photovoltaic module was built by Bell Laboratories in 1954. In the 1960s, the space industry began to make the first serious use of the technology to provide power aboard spacecrafts. As a result of this, major technological advances in PV were achieved, which improved reliability and led to a fall in prices. PV technology is becoming more and more affordable as an alternative means of producing electricity for domestic use. PV modules are inherently durable, and will typically generate electricity from sunlight for a period of 25 years, with little change in efficiency. The Solar PV market is now getting a boost in Seychelles. The Government of Seychelles, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) are implementing a



This initiate contributes to the Government of Seychelles 2020 target of obtaining 20% of its energy from renewable sources. For the national economy this is good news - it will reduce annual consumption of fuel oil by about 390 metric tonnes. Grid-connected PV Systems project, with the objective of kick-starting the PV market in Seychelles. As as a tropical country with all-year round sunshine, Seychelles is well-suited for the use of PV technology. However, to ensure viability, practicality and thus effective uptake of the technology, the project needs to address a number of issues to create an environment favourable for the adoption of PV systems. The project is thus putting into place the enabling policies for the use of PV: a financial rebate scheme to reduce upfront costs, a net metering mechanism to ensure economic effectiveness, and capacity development to support the initiative.

For individual home owners and small businesses, installing solar power means two things. Firstly, the avoided costs of electricity bills, and secondly, a greener home or business.These benefits help to pay off your initial investment, within a period of about 5 years; once paid off, these savings will be reflected in your disposable income. PV installation is a win-win situation for both individuals and government. The use of PV instead of burning fossil fuels benefits the environment by mitigating the effects of climate change. Solar energy not only has a minimal physical footprint, as the PV panels are placed on rooftops, but it leads to a more secure energy mix in the country, avoiding the opportunity cost of importing foreign energy.

The subsidy scheme to encourage the purchasing of PV panels by homeowners and small businesses, which is being implemented through the Development Bank of Seychelles (DBS) was launched in May.

Submitted by GOS-UNDP-GEF Programme Coordination Unit

By the end of the project, 1.7 million Kilowatt hours of electricity are expected to be generated per year as a result of the financial incentives.

GOS-UNDP-GEF Programme Coordination Unit 1st Floor, Les Palmes Building, Victoria P.O Box 310 Tel: 43225599 Email. Dominic.rassool@me.com

L'Habitation Cerf Island



For more information pleae contact;

Vanilla Islands President Mr Didier Robert




The Vanilla Island project has a new president – Mr Didier Robert was elected on the 14th May 2014 as the new president of The Vanilla Islands, following the consecutive presidencies of Mr Alain St Ange, Minister of Tourism from the Seychelles. Mr Robert is also the President of the Regional Council of La Reunion Island. We asked him a few questions. What do you think the Vanilla Islands have accomplished thus far for each country and the region as a whole? The Vanilla Islands’ concept arose from the will of the islands of the Indian Ocean (Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Mayotte, Comoros, Reunion and since 2013 the Maldives) as an answer to an evolution in the market of world tourism. The members of the Vanilla Islands, as a group, allowed for the promotion of several islands as one destination as opposed to the single islands alone. This makes for a stronger marketing campaign. The ways in which the islands complement each other are our ‘trump cards’ particularly with the new clienteles such as China, India, South Africa, Australia.... In 2011, this concept was welcomed by the World Tourism Organisation with the support from its Secretary-General, Mr Taleb Rifaï. He officially recognised the effort of two founder members of the Vanilla Islands; James Michel, President of the Republic of Seychelles and myself, Mr. Didier Robert. Thus the Vanilla Islands now exists on the world stage. For those outside Reunion and Seychelles who don’t know you, what do you bring to the presidency and what are the goals you're setting? This presidency continues the shared vision and I hope to carry on the wonderful job done by outgoing president, Minister Alain St Ange. Among both major objectives which I plan to carry out: - continuation of the Vanilla Islands’ concept in order to improve the economy of the islands; - better air access to increase the traffic within the Indian Ocean in collaboration with the regional companies; - better access towards outgoing markets as India and China - address visa policies with the aim of facilitating traffic between the Vanilla Islanders as well as for the tourists coming from target markets (China, India) The first results obtained for last two years demonstrate that the strategy of inter-islands packages is successful. For example, for Reunion

Island it is about 25 000 tourists who came to visit us during the last months using a combined trip. Are the Vanilla Islands purely a marketing platform or are there other ways in which the islands are cooperating under this banner? The islands are cooperating in many ways. We want to promote quality standards and services across the board. This is why we are working on a regional standard for tourism accommodation for the smaller establishments. In lieu of our objective to improve efficiency we conducted a workshop on social media for the community managers of the tourism boards recently. This is an example of how we plan to nurture the cooperation. In particular I want to stress on the importance of eco-friendly tourism. The Vanilla Islands are based on our solidarity, on our shared vision for a successful and exemplary tourism for each of our islands. There’s been mention of the Vanilla Islands growing. How will certain potential additions (Maldives, Sri Lanka for instance) add to the benefit of the group, given that these islands do not share the same historical foundations for which the name was chosen? Could it not be to the detriment of the project? Indian Ocean is uniting the islands. We cannot in the same breath tell the world that we are open minded, that we are a melting pot of cultures and close the door to our friends living a few minutes away from us. This was my fight as the President of the Reunion Regional Council and it will remain my fight as the President of the Vanilla Islands; to open doors to a new tourism model for all the islands. This is why I will place priority on the visa issues and on finding common grounds to unite us in the cultural and sports arena. A sound economic plan for the islands is also part of my agenda. What is the future for Vanilla islands? I am convinced that the concept of the Vanilla Islands is evidence that a pragmatic answer to the changes imposed by globalisation and to the new requirements of an international clientele can and has been found. They are in search of authenticity and a re-connection to nature; this is why we have to be very attentive to eco-tourism and to always maintain a good up-keep of our environment. The Vanilla Islands are a reality. For it to succeed, we all need to work together to develop tourism on our islands in ways that would be beneficial to each island. We need to walk side by side on the Vanilla Islands’ road and I am certain, it is indeed the road of success.



Seychelles Tourism Board beefs up e-marketing capability By Glynn Burridge The Seychelles Tourism Board is investing resources, both financial and human, to strengthen its e-marketing department to be able to respond to the ways consumers are now researching holiday destinations and services over a wide range of devices, including tablets and smart phones. For many years, marketing tourism destinations relied on paper-based collaterals such as brochures, flyers and posters but with the advent of the web that was destined to change. In today’s brave new world, customers the world over are able to research items that interest them at the roll of a mouse-wheel, compare the prices and features of rival products and read reviews on dedicated blogs and websites. The relentless advance of technology is ensuring that the customer is able to purchase just about anything online and that includes booking a holiday on their tablet, phablet or smart phone while taking the train home from work. No one knows this better than Vahid Jacob, the tourism board’s e-marketing manager, who has dedicated much of his time and energy over the last year in ensuring that Seychelles remains ahead of the technology curve and is able to respond to the needs of today’s tech-savvy consumer.



This has involved the development of four new destination websites complete with fresh, new design and with a special focus on stunning images and the integration of social media. These websites are mobile-optimised for smartphones and tablets and feature 360 degree virtual tours of beaches and an array of island attractions on Mahé, Praslin and La Digue as well as interactive maps of all the islands, allowing users to share their location via social media. There is also a revamped image and video library. The configuration of the new destination website also allows for a suite of new events micro sites dedicated to the promotion of such happenings as SUBIOS and Miss Seychelles…another world beauty pageant. The ongoing development of e-marketing at the tourism board includes a huge increase in its social media activity and it is now visible on a total of nine social media platforms and has earned a total of 250,000 fans who are active across platforms such as Google+ Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Wayne etc. The islands now enjoy a very high rate of interaction with over six, dedicated Seychelles Facebook pages and are one of the best-rated island destinations on Trip Advisor. The new e-marketing strategy also includes the development of free E-Travel Guides for IPads and tablets which have seen over 700 downloads from 16 countries in just 2 weeks without any marketing. A free Seychelles mobile AP for smart phones has also been developed. Furthermore, the Seychelles Tourism Board is also planning to gather online statistics on searches by potential visitors on major search and booking engines which will enable it to fine-tune future marketing campaigns.


The Dance of the Kankan 28



Disney’s story lines I was fascinated with the costumes and replayed them over and over to capture the styles and cuts’. She then started to train herself in fashion drawings using Barbie computer software, and even went on to sew new outfits for each doll, chopping and styling their hair to match the outfit. After graduating from the prestigious Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London, following the likes of John Galliano, Stella McCartney, Zac Possen, Gareth Pugh and Alexander McQueen; Karine took placements in Franck Sorbier's, Paris Haute Couture fashion house, the Italian textile manufacturer, Ratti supplying for Haute Couture fashion houses around the world as well as London based Brazilian designer Lena Santana. ‘Each work experience has made me what I am today. The most favourite being my work in Como, at Ratti. I had the chance to learn how everything is printed on fabric in the factory. I saw By Nathalie Hodgson ‘I always knew that my path in life was in fashion design. It is what I am, my whole being. As a teenager I struggled at school; no subjects would interest me and I found it difficult to focus on anything else. I didn’t listen, would doodle on my note pad all day, getting me into constant trouble. My art class was the only breath of fresh air, and I of course excelled in it. It was my art teacher Mr Kennedy, who told me about the first steps of how to pursue a career in fashion. That was when I struck a deal, I would make all my grades and I would go to the best fashion college in the world, it was my destiny’. Kankan a creole word for ‘spreading the word’ is by far the leading fashion label in Seychelles, with its stylish yet relaxed elegance, that is reflective of the country’s beautiful but powerful female persona. The mind behind the designs, Karine Dupouy, is a young ambitious lady that started the brand with a few t-shirts back in 2011. ‘I want to take my designs and Seychelles fashion to an international level and that is why I strictly add Seychelles to my branding guidelines. I couldn’t think of anywhere else to live, my heart belongs here’. At the wee age of 6, Karine told her parents that she wanted to become a fashion designer. They watched her go through her aunties and grandmothers wardrobes styling and re-working numbers on herself. ‘While other kids were laughing at the



At work

the most amazing designs created right in front of my eyes alongside the biggest designers in the industry. I spent two months in the design department where I created my own designs, they were so pleased by them they even kept three. At Frank Sorbier's couture atelier in Paris Karine learned the art of lace making and the time, care and detail it takes for each creation. At Santana she perfected her sewing skills with expert mentoring guidance. Karine’s creative eye is present in everything she does and is clearly her foundation, blessed with multiple talents from painting, photography and free drawing to mention a few, and so she cannot help but see inspiration from everywhere and everything. ‘I start off with a theme board, that stems from my ideas, thoughts and visualizations this then develops into garments. I love beautiful things so I try to inspire myself with a mindset of Hollywood stars going onto the red carpet’. Karine travels to fashion shows and trade fairs around the world collecting the latest ideas for future collections. ‘I pick out colors I liked during my travels and further develop them when I get back home’. Her stardom design vision is apparent in the collections, which seemingly have two main categories; ready to wear and Haute Couture. The ready to wear collection contains summer dresses and tops in subtly printed cotton, perfect for the warm



summer season and the elegant, classic evening wear jumps out at you as you marvel at the attention to detail and romance in every stitch. So how does Karine stay motivated, living so far away from the fashion world? ‘I follow a lot of designer blogs to keep up with the trends but my on-going inspirations would have to be Ellie Saab, Marchesa and Matthew Williamson. I love the gowns they create and I am a big fan of sequins and sparkles. I have always loved creating and so Matthew Williamson has to be my biggest inspiration when it comes to print design. It is even more exciting to know that we went to the same university’. Karine’s passion shines through as she makes a point of wearing the first samples to really engage and connect to her creations, highlighting that she must know how it feels moves and falls on a figure, before it gets released in store. Carefully selecting all her beautiful silk fabrics from India and Turkey, to ensure the best quality, you can see her heart and soul lies in every piece from fabric purchase to hanger. ‘As soon as I see a fabric I can visualize the garment in my head. I used to favour black fabrics but I am moving away from this shade recently’. Karine’s recent collection is called Tropical Romance. A resort collection made of light weight fabrics perfect for those sunny days. It stemmed from a trio sketch

board of the related themes, the Tropical Romance, Cast Away and Sun & Sea, and contains unique raffia hats, jewelry and bags all perfectly matching accessories for that ultimate James Bond island ensemble. With only fifteen items per collection they really are unique pieces of art. Kankan only partners with semi-precious manufacturers from Italy for all the jewelry pieces. ‘Just like the clothing we wear on our backs, the accessories we pair with them too define our personal style, it's an extension of Self ' because what you wear, in their own special way, gives you a glimpse of who you are. Style is saying who you are without having to speak a word", they say’. Karine has been busy working on her very own printed fabric collection; spending months locked up sketching and painting to perfect the designs. ‘I am not completely satisfied with them yet but will get there’. She slipped out that these personal prints will include a beachwear collection of Kaftans with semi precious stones. ‘I try to create something different for each collection to challenge myself and going to trade fairs helps a lot in knowing what is new in the market’.

Karine and mum, Claudine


So how does a fashion designer charge her creative batteries? Karine and her beau take one month each year on an adventure. Planned out months in advance to maximize the time, experiences and distances she looks forward to this break to fully rejuvenate. The next escape is to Burma, Nepal and Tibet.

The Kankan team is very family orientated with Karine’s Mum in partnership to work on the more marketing/administrative aspects of the business to allow Karine more time to channel her extraordinary into hopefully next season’s masterpieces. Like many artists, Karine likes her own space and quiet time. ‘I am a shy person and try and avoid socializing with large groups or too many interviews but it is now a part of my job, people need to know the person behind the brand’. On her days off Karine spends a lot of time cooking, creating a new dish every week, mostly with local produce. She also never ceases to try and learn new things in photography, web designing or anything to do with market branding to keep Kankan on the marks.

Karine wants to one day spread her KanKan wings from the Indian Ocean and has her sights set on retail outlets in Dubai and South Africa to start with. ‘I want to have my fashion house here in Seychelles, and would love to have the resources to produce all of the clothes locally instead of outsourcing manufacturers overseas. With no plans for a family yet, well not before she ticks off all the ‘before 30 bucket list’ she would also like to have a Kankan Kids line too. Her parting line ‘It is so important not to dress for other people, or someone you are trying to impress. You must dress to impress yourself, to feel pretty, happy and confident and this will put a smile on your face everyday’.



Timeline To Date

On the runway

1986 – born in Mauritius, youngest of three, two elder brothers 1989 – move to Seychelles at the age of three 1991 – recollection of first drawing 1992 - age 6 told her parents she is becoming a fashion designer 2010 – Graduated from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London 2008 - Practicum in France Franck Sorbier's Paris Haute Couture fashion house Practicum in Italy Ratti; a textile manufacturer 2009 - Practicum in London with Brazilian designer Lena Santana 2010 – moved back to home to Seychelles and started brainstorming her vision 2012 - Launch of Kankan brand with series of trendy, casual t-shirts Cocktail collection for the Miss Seychelles Miss Seychelles pageant 2013 - Designed and created Miss Seychelles ball gown for the Miss World Pageant (held in Bali) 2013 - Launch of first line – silks collection Garments took the front pages of Pot Pourri Magazine; 3 times 2014 - Additional retail outlet in Victoria, Mahe To be launched Couture fashion show for Kankan


P.O BOX 405, VICTORIA, MAHE, SEYCHELLES TELEPHONE 4361006, TELEFAX 4361200. adams@seychelles.net www.michaeladamsart.com 32


© Frog974 Photographies




Snacks By Alexandria Faure & Chef Antoine Simoen

Looking for snack ideas with an island twist? These scrumptious recipes are sure to fulfil your snacking needs. Seychellois people are the island experts when it comes to preparing dishes and snacks for any special occasion! The snack list can be long and varied, but there are a few popular recipes that can be found at almost every Seychellois get together. The merging of our exotic cuisine and our love for celebration is a central element to the island lifestyle and culture on our islands. Whether it’s for a BBQ, a party or a simple movie night in, these will be the perfect match to your event. Delve into these next pages for some great, can’t keep your hands off, kind of finger licking good snacks and appetizers.



Photography; Dominic Elizabeth

A traditional Seychellois recipe that is popular for beach picnics and parties, the Gato Piman is a tantalizing snack bursting with spices. They taste great with dips and are easy to make. There’s always room to be creative by adding other interesting ingredients to the mix.

Ingredients 150g, Red lentils 1 medium onion, chopped 1 tsp garlic, minced 1 tsp ginger, minced 3 tbsp plain flour

Gato Piman - Spicy Cakes 4 green or red chillies, finely chopped ( add or remove depending on your taste) sunflower oil or groundnut oil, for frying salt, to taste

with salt then mix in enough plain flour to bind everything together. Heat about 2 tbsp oil in a non-stick pan. When the oil is hot, drop in the lentil batter by the tablespoon and fry for a few minutes, or until golden brown on the base. Flip over and cook until golden brown on the other side. Place them in a serving bowl and serve warm.

Preparing the Cakes Wash the lentils, place in a bowl, cover with water and set aside to soak over night. The following day, drain the lentils then place in a blender or food processor and process them lightly. Transfer the lentils to a bowl and mix in the onion, garlic, ginger and chillies. Season

40 minutes

4-5 Serves



Chips Banann – Banana Chips You can’t go wrong with a bowl of banana chips. If you’re getting bored of popcorn they are the perfect snacks for a movie night at home and they also make for an eclectic appetiser at a dinner or a lunch. They are also a great snack for the afternoon munchies!


Ingredients 5, St Jacques Bananas Sunflower oil or groundnut oil, for frying Salt, to taste

Preparing the Chips Peel the bananas and slice them in very thin round circles. And Set aside. Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the sliced bananas to the oil and fry until golden brown and slightly hard. Place them in a serving bowl to drain, sprinkle with some salt, set aside to cool and serve.


Photo credit; Dominic Elizabeth

40 minutes

4-5 Serves

Photo credit; Dominic Elizabeth

A quick and easy recipe to make, Aubergine fritters are great as a snack on its own or as a side with a salad or some fish. To add a spicy twist to the recipe, add some crushed chillies in your batter! Try it with different dips!

Ingredients 1 large Eggplant, Eggs, 3 Egg Whites, 3 Flour, 250g Water, 200ml Baking Powder, 2 teaspoons sunflower oil or groundnut oil, for frying

Brenzel Fri – Aubergine Fritters Preparing the Batter

Sift the flour into a bowl and make a well in the middle. Add the eggs, baking powder, salt and herbs and spice of your choice and mix together until it becomes a smooth batter. Beat the egg whites until stiff and add to the creamy batter.

40 minutes

4-5 Serves

Making the Fritters

Wash the eggplant and slice into thin circles. Heat some oil in a saucepan. Dip the slices of eggplant into the batter and deep fry them into the oil until it becomes a golden brown and place in your serving bowl. Serve whilst still warm.



Zironmon Fri – Pumpkin Fritters Delicious and best served warm, Pumpkin Fritters are easy and quick to make. They taste amazing drizzled with syrup, sprinkled cinnamon or vanilla ice cream.

Ingredients Ripe Pumpkin, 500g Sugar, 150g Eggs, 3 Egg Whites, 3 Oil, 5cl Butter, 150g Flour, 350g 38

Vanilla Essence Nutmeg sunflower oil or groundnut oil, for frying

Preparing the Batter Peel, wash, cut the pumpkin into square pieces and boil in a saucepan until soft. Remove from the saucepan, drain and mash the pumpkin into a puree and set aside to cool. Mix the mashed pumpkin with the butter, eggs and oil with a wooden spoon and set aside. Sift the flour to remove any lumps and gradually mix it into the pumpkin mixture until it becomes a creamy batter and set aside. Beat the egg whites and until stiff and pour it into the pumpkin batter and mix together.


Photo credit; Dominic Elizabeth

Flavour the batter with a few drops of Vanilla Essence and grated nutmeg to your taste.

Making the Fritters Heat some oil in a pan. Take a wooden spoon portion of the batter and deep fry them into small balls. When they turn golden brown remove them from the oil to drain and place in your serving bowl. Serve whilst still warm.

40 minutes

4-5 Serves

Photo credit; Dominic Elizabeth

The classic seafood favourite, Calamari Fritters are easy and quick to make. They taste great with salads or with a side of sweet potato fries! Chilli Mayo is a great dip for this one.

Kalamar – Calamari Fritters Ingredients

600g Squid, Cut into rings 200g, Flour Salt, for seasoning sunflower oil or groundnut oil, for frying

40 minutes

4-5 Serves

Preparing the Fritters Season the flour with salt, pepper and paprika powder. Mix the squid with flour until they get fully coated. Heat the oil in a pan and fry the squid for 2 minutes until golden brown.



By Nathalie Hodgson

In 2005 Seychelles saw the first luxury real estate development on 49 hectares of newly reclaimed land turn into Eden Island Marina. Now investors from over 32 different nationalities have laid claim to their little piece of paradise. This residential marina is launching another first with its business hotel, ‘Eden Bleu’ to be officially opened by end of 2014, ready to capture not only the corporate clientele but also the island hoppers.

Eden Island Hotel



Eden Island Marina

Eden Island is an integrated resort development located two kilometers off Mahè Island. It offers holiday accommodation and long term rentals to investors and holiday makers from around the world. It offers accessibility and privacy to those who wish to invest in luxury property that is also highly desirable accommodation for the holiday rental market. Motor vehicles are not permitted in the residential areas and each property receives an island buggy to move to and from their home. Each property comes with a private mooring and with 16 hectares of private waterways, and three investment categories to choose from.

Surrounded by blue and green hues of the ocean, and tropical flora, including many fruit-growing trees, colourful bird species and specks of floral plants that add to the island’s visual appeal, it is easily accessed by sea, and provide opportunities to explore nearby islands such as Cerf and Sainte Anne. The newest edition to the development is Eden Bleu, falling in line with Seychelles’ government "Blue Economy” concept, where the nation aims to harness its oceanic resources in a sustainable manner. Eden Bleu will consist of 87 rooms, including a presidential suite and also boasts a 300 seat conference centre and six business meeting rooms.



‘A gap was identified in the hotel market for corporate events and conferences and for a true business hotel. Our sole target is to increase the number of business travelers’ said Eden Island's Sales and Marketing Manager, Peter Smith. ‘We also hope to attract the MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) market with corporate group offerings visiting one part business and one part incentive. Eden Island has so much to offer all visitors and added to this is the ability for people attending a conference to rent a self catering home on Eden Island while they are in Seychelles’, Smith continued. The new hotel will also target weddings, local events, business meetings and a range of other activities. The conference centre will boast leading edge technology and internet connectivity and will accommodate 200 to 300 people. ‘It is ideally situated on Eden Island, which is becoming a new hub of business and entertainment in Seychelles. We are close to the airport and Victoria and have a range of restaurants, marine activities, a casino and much more. Mr Smith explained that although the hotel will be attracting primarily corporate business, they expect around a third of clients to be those vacationing in Seychelles. ‘We envisage many tourists who are travelling to other islands and would like a couple of nights on Mahe at the beginning or end of their



holiday choosing the hotel for its locality to the airport and all that it offers on its doorstep’. ‘Tapping into these mentioned markets will also showcase Eden Island as the new destination attraction that should sit on the’ list of things to do’ for every visitor to islands’, Smith added As a calculated spin off, the services, local businesses and real estate opportunities on Eden Island clientel will grow and the demand to buy or rent in the long term will increase. ‘We have engaged an international team of specialists who have extensive experience in opening hotels worldwide. Details will be announced shortly but it will be a very eventful few months leading up to the planned opening in November 2014’. So if you always wanted a holiday home in paradise this is your one stop shop with prices starting from USD $ 450,000 for a one bedroom apartment, to USD$ 3.5 million for villas- all of which have swimming pools and are situated on plots ranging from 600 sq metre to as much as 3000 sq metre, ensuring absolute privacy. The last of the units are now being built, which will bring the total to 576 by the end of 2016, with 473 units already sold. You are assured of having the perfect getaway away coupled with a lucrative rental investment for life. For more information on holiday accommodation and rentals please contact us on reservations@edenisland.sc or +248 434 6061.

e D s s A e f r a C by lunch ts Cote d’or, Anse Volbert, Praslin

Praslin, the island native to the famous Coco De Mer should ideally be on every tourist itinerary. Once across, and while enjoying the sights and sounds, hunger prangs will surely call, and when they do, do call at Cote d’or, Anse Volbert and sample the delights Cafes Des Arts has to offer. It’s an experience you will not regret.

Cafe des Arts Restaurant

The setting is tasteful and funky all at the same time with vibrant colours and textures at every turn. Facing the ocean, the restaurant is meters away from the beach and you can almost feel the sand in your toes. The lunch menu is light with options of salads, baguettes, burgers and the likes, as well as a few curries and grills thrown in. The meals sound simple but it’s everything but. With every meal bursting with taste, it’s hard to say which I preferred, suffice to say that if my belly had accommodated, I could have polished off every Chilli Beef Wrap with Homemade Wraps



meal. As it was, because of the generous portions even with a party of 3, we struggled to finish it all, although we put up a good fight. Dessert was as equally splendid, with offers including fruit kebabs with impressively sized fruits pieces, homemade pancakes and Crème Caramel.

Creme Caramel

Gazing at the blue ocean before us, we vowed to come back to Praslin more often and more importantly to introduce our families to this delightful spot, but what made it a delight? The great location and venue? Yes, for sure and certainly great food, but as importantly and crucial to setting any ambiance is good staff. With their easy Slushies

Peppered Beef Fillet Steak Burger



Homemade Pancakes

The Team

Smoked Fish and Starfruit Salad

Cafe des Arts Restaurant, Kiosk from above

Fruit Kebabs

Beef Lasagne

humour and quick smile, this team was a delight. Ever watchful to our needs with friendliness not usually encountered, we ended up chatting only to discover that the kitchen producing the delights before us, was in fact a team of young men. We of course sent our compliments to the chef(s).

The View

Ending our lazy lunch, we opted for the lighter slushies’ and they did not disappoint. Bursting with flavor ,these 3 fruity drinks were passed around and all declared winners. With the combination of all these factors, we left Café des Arts, with a happy belly and a spring in our step. Eager to return (and sad to leave) we waved goodbye to our new friends and wondered, if a ‘simple’ lunch could be that good, what was dinner like? We look forward to finding out!!



La Plaine St Andre

A Review

Steeped in Colonial traditions which, upon walking into the converted plantation house conjure up a stark vision of times past, La Plaine St Andre is certainly a one-of-a-kind restaurant. Encompassed by historical ruins and wide-ranging gardens, the seating area boasts ample room and an ambience unlike any other, setting a perfectly palatable mood for a dining experience. Over and above that, the whole property carries the very rare



gift of being able to transport it's guests to another place. A place that exists outside the hustle and bustle of everyday life. As a starter, the Ceasar Salad sets the standard for what is to be a refreshing culinary encounter. Flawlessly crisped chicken breast and bacon shards adorn a bed of greenery, with vinaigrette-soaked croutons adding an ideal texture variation to the dish.

If you're stuck on what to order as a main, I'd suggest the rum and coke basted pork ribs, served with a side salad and thick, farmhouse-style Potato chips. Although it sounds simple and perhaps even a bit too 'back-yard barbeque', I assure you that the blend of Takamaka's own locally-made rum and soft, sultry pork compliments this dish in a very satisfying way. As for a dessert, there is no clearer choice than the Dessert Symphonie, a platter of bite-sized sweet bits, each of which acts as an absolutely mouth-watering end to a meal. The Passion Fruit sorbet however, is the cream of the crop. Also, be sure to quench your thirst with one of La Plaine's many freshly-pressed fruit cocktails, which are served with the most flavoursome local fruits, many of which are grown in the restaurant gardens.

La Plaine St. AndrĂŠ T: +248 437 2010 E : reservations@laplaine.sc W : www.laplaine.sc




REISEN By Nathalie Hodgson Back in 1995, Seychellois born and bred, Kidd Lavigne left the position of Manager of the German Market at Masons Travel to take a job with FTI Touristik in Germany. Little did he know that 19 years later he would be his own boss, selling dream holidays not only back home to Seychelles but the world. Kidd runs a very personal affair, placing great emphasis on who and what he sells. What drives him is the desire to inspire his clients with to their individual travel program and an accommodation, excursion, island to meet each and everyone’s travel needs.



Lavigne travel is a tour operator company based in Ostfildern, Germany, that specializes in carefully selected portfolios of products around the Indian Ocean, Mediterranean and The Gulf. His very selective choice of broad offering ranges from guest houses, cottages and small country hotels that he and his team regularly visit so can convince clients personally by the quality of the homes offered. We caught up with Kidd Lavigne to understand his devotion to the tourism industry and here is what he had to say.


I came to Germany for study and then worked over 18 years in this industry, under the names of CASAS GmbH Munchen, Spezialreiseveranstalter and Global First Class Travel. Coupled with my passion for travel, knowledge and experience I decided to take the plunge and start my own tour operator business in 2010.



As a tour operator you have a big responsibility. Everyhing starts with good planning. Attention to detail on every aspect of their trip (tickets, transfers etc) has to be considered, checked, double checked and even then things may change on the day.


I have a four year old grandchild and am happily married to a German lady. They love that I travel and they also can come with me on certain trips.

As I know and sell other islands in the Indian Ocean (Maldives and Mauritius) I can compare Seychelles to some of its competitors first hand. There are improvements to be done in customer service area. It has got a lot better, but still there is space for improvement.



I really CAN remember my first booking I made for Seychelles. They were German honeymooners wanting to see a few islands and only wanted guesthouses. I always recommend island hopping, because they have the chance to see as much as possible from my country.


My clients come from all over Germany and German speaking countries. These are mostly interested in the nature, culture and Creole lifestyle and a majority only want guesthouses and small hotels.

5. WHAT DO YOU SELL MORE OFF -ONLINE OR DIRECT? I represent myself through my website; www.lavignereisen.de and most of the clients are direct– let’s say 90%. The other 10 % are from local travel agencies.

6. WHAT DO YOU FIND CUSTOMERS LOVE THE BEST ABOUT SEYCHELLES? When my clients return from their vacation they always send me a feeback. They list the unspoiled beach, the nature and the friendly Creole people and always the food. An important point is also, that there is no mass tourism and that the number of big hotels is limited. This is a great selling point.


I try to come to Seychelles twice a year to see new properties and to check the standards of my products.


I love my country and I want to share the beauty of Seychelles with everyone. The feedback I receive, detailing their trip and that they had the most beautiful holiday ever, is really satisfying.

It’s difficult to say. Personally I love to be at home in Beau Vallon with my family. When I need a break I like to go with my wife to La Digue to disconnect totally.


First of all I would like to keep on my standard of service and improve on it even further. I have just started offering other destinations in the Indian Ocean and also with small Hotels on the Spanish Island, Mallorca and stop over’s in the UAE. Small steps first. An important aspect is when I take hotels in our repertoires, that I know them personally. That’s why Lavigne Reisen offers only known products.


German people are frequent travelers. They are very open minded and very interested to discover new destinations. According to the latest survey of german tourism market there will be an increase of long distance travel. Globally I think the Asia market will be very strong in the future so we need to work even harder.


I would focus on eco tourism and environmental care. Set an example to the Indian Ocean and the world on alternative energy and sustainability. Seychelles can do this as its small. And I will make a life-long Law “No Mass Tourism in Seychelles “. You can contact Kidd Lavigne on: LAVIGNE TRAVEL Telephone +49 (0) 7158 - 98 64 605 Mobile +49 (0) 177-68 59 072 INFO@LAVIGNE-REISEN.DE




How Le Duc de Praslin is taking homegrown hospitality to new heights. By RJ Williams

Over-sized bathrooms, reputed haute cuisine, state-ofthe-art Magna pools, all in a magnificent beachfront location on an island oft-likened to the Garden of Eden. If that sounds like the stuff of an international luxury hotel chain, you could be right. But you’d actually be wrong.

With a fresh degree in hand, however, Robert felt the property had the potential to be so much more. As always, he helped with the family business, but not without constantly pressuring his father about further expansion. “With my degree, there was no point for me to work in a nine-room hotel,” Robert says. He felt, for his career, he had but two options. “Either we expand, or I’m going to go work in a big hotel.” That was enough motivation. In 1999, two new blocks started to go up, and six new rooms were added. But Robert, now having taken over the business, still felt

When Robert Payet was still in secondary school, his parents bought a small three-room annex on Cote D’Or beach on Praslin, the Seychelles archipelago’s second largest island. That purchase was the beginning of a project that, even 23 years ago, was rather modest in scope: a quaint family-run guesthouse, albeit in a great beachfront location. While Robert was studying at the Polytechnic on Mahé, his father added an additional six rooms to the property. And when Robert returned from Singapore with a degree in hotel management at the end of 1997, a small restaurant was soon added as well. Le Duc



Hillside Villa view


there was more to do. Seven years ago, he decided to close the hotel for a drastic renovation, and all of the old rooms and the restaurant were pulled down to make way for the new Le Duc de Praslin.

Le Duc Superior Room



The evolution of Le Duc didn’t involve a massive injection of cash from a new buyer, or some grand vision by a developer with ambitious ideas and a fresh line of credit. Rather, Le Duc is the byproduct of the persistence and patience needed to develop gradually - from three humble rooms to one that is now made up of more than 40 - across a quarter of a century. For Robert, it appears that means never being wholly satisfied with the status quo. After carrying out the extensive renovations that had already turned Le Duc into one of the top four-star properties on the island, Robert still saw opportunities to improve. When the well-regarded small hotel adjacent to Le Duc, Cafe des Arts, went up for sale, there was no hesitation. The rooms were incorporated into Le Duc, while the restaurant, retaining the same name, has for several years now been firmly established as an iconic fine-dining restaurant that attracts a clientele well beyond the hotel’s own residents. The constant growth has meant an ever-increasing workforce, but

Robert, whose wife Lisa also runs the Cafe des Arts souvenir shop, takes pride in the fact the entire 90-strong team is comprised of Seychellois only. “I think our staff feel at ease working here,” Robert says. “We treat our staff as part of a big family and I think they’re happy to work for a local entrepreneur and local managers. It’s not always easy for a foreigner to understand the local culture and local habits. “I’m very hands on,” Robert says. “I praise my staff when they do well and am involved in all staffing decisions.” Robert also credits Le Duc’s resident manager Gina Michaud-Payet as his “right hand in bringing up the standard of the hotel.”


Robert’s goal is simple: “We want to be the best four-star hotel in Seychelles.” He knows the hotel’s facilities and finishings have a lot to do with that - that’s why even the lowest category of rooms are unusually spacious with large bathrooms. The garden that serves as the connecting hub between the rooms and the hotel’s restaurant and reception is lavishly decorated, with rare orchids adorning the the pathways, and with bridges over a couple of large (one of 30,000 litres and the other 100,000 litres) Koi ponds. The



1 Bedroom, Family

interconnecting paths and bridges create little islands, which give character to even the simple act of walking to breakfast. He works closely with local artist Andrew Gee on colour schemes and decor. “He’s very much suited to my style of design,” he says, stressing the importance of a local touch. To further differentiate the hotel, Robert also took the dramatic step of being the first property in Seychelles to install Magna pools on his property. This unique pool system uses magnesium and other minerals as its filtration method, which not only serves to clean the pool, but according to the manufacturer also can deliver health benefits, in particular for the skin. “It’s the most ecologically friendly pool system in the world,” he says, and the client feedback has been excellent. In upgrading the hotel’s “hardware,” Robert knows that the “software” is just as important, and this is one area where he’s decided to up the ante in how he can make

Pano, Le Duc



The Payet family

Le Duc attractive to potential guests. For instance, Le Duc offers quite an unusual facility for those guests truly in search of a lazy holiday: breakfast can be enjoyed until 11.30am. To encourage more family bookings, children are only considered as adults when they reach the age of 18 years (compared to 12 years in the case of many hotels). In the case of large families with different age gaps between children, this can translate into considerable holiday savings. These little edges, Robert believes, are incredibly important in the current environment. “There are some good little properties charging half the price as us,” he says. “But they don’t have the same overheads we do. So I will always try and improve our services so that we can boost occupancy while maintaining the price. I’m not in favour of pulling down the price - for most hotels this means they have to take out value from what the client is getting.”

And that’s the last thing Robert wants to do. Instead, he says, Le Duc should be positioned so that “any hotel with a better offering would be considered a 5-star hotel.”

Le Dauphin Restaurant


Up the hill from the beach, Le Duc’s newest additions are only loosely affiliated with the hotel, and they target a different niche market of large families and groups interested in a more private and exclusive accommodation option. These include a fourbedroom villa with its own Magna pool, and a threebedroom maison. Between these new properties and the latest family rooms and suites that have been added, Le Duc has seen an influx from the Russian and Middle Eastern markets. Robert is also keen to tap into the burgeoning Chinese outbound market, while also maintaining a strong presence in the traditional European markets that make up the core client mix.

Standard Room

The marketing is important, but Robert still has a keen eye on his immediate surroundings - it’s not a question of now throwing all his weight overseas to bring in more clients. There’s more work to be done at home. By the end of the year, the second story addition to Cafe des Arts should be completed, offering an additional type of dining experience, in the form of a tapas-style bar and restaurant that will open late. This will round out Le Duc’s tally at three bars and three restaurants. He also plans to introduce a sunrise yoga and breakfast ‘club’ for those of his guests who wish to enjoy a peaceful early morning session at dawn, with coffee and light bites in the offing.

Le Duc

These kinds of innovative approaches have not escaped the notice of the holiday-making public, or those in the industry itself. In the past few years, Le Duc has garnered several awards from international websites like Tripadvisor and Zoover, on the basis of client satisfaction ratings and reviews. Last year, the hotel was awarded best tourism establishment from the Seychelles Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The recognition, Robert thinks, “is based on all the improvements we’ve done.” If the past 23 years are any indication, there will be even more improvements, and more awards, to come.



I n Th e N e w s

New President elected for the Indian Ocean Vanilla Islands - Didier Robert of La Reunion

Didier Robert, the President of the Regional Council of La Reunion Island has been elected the new President of the Indian Ocean Vanilla islands. President Didier Robert  replaces Alain St.Ange, the Minister of Tourism and Culture of the Seychelles whose second mandate came to an end in May. An interview on page 21 talks of Mr Robert’ plans for his presidency. Representatives of Comoros, La Reunion, Madagascar, Mauritius, Mayotte and the Seychelles poses together at the handing over of the ceremonial Vanilla Island Flag by Minister Alain St.Ange to President Didier Robert

Indaba Tourism Trade Fair of South Africa declared a great event

The Seychelles Delegation attending the 2014 Indaba Tourism Trade Fair left Durban saying that it was a great success. Alain St.Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture personally headed the delegation from the islands to the biggest tourism and travel trade fair of Africa.  David Germain, the Seychelles Tourism Board’s Director for Africa and the Americas and Marsha Parcou, the Tourism Boards Manager for Africa were both on hand working with the island’s private sector trade to ensure that Seychelles remains relevant on the South African market. Seychelles was very visible at this latest trade fair with many one to one meetings headed by their Minister responsible for Tourism, but they also staged a big and very successful Press Conference at the Hilton Hotel in the fair grounds. Indaba was the opportunity for the SAVOY HOTEL of the Seychelles to be seen by South Africa Tour Operators. This new property situated right on the

Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Tourism and Travel Mart to be held in Seychelles

It has been confirmed that the Seychelles will be hosting the 2014 Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Tourism and Travel Mart which from the 19th to 21st September 2014.   The aim of the 2014 Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Tourism and Travel mart is to bring together policy makers and stakeholders in the tourism and travel industry.  This will include the Seychelles, Regional and International Tourism Organisations, Travel Agencies, Hotels, Tour Operators and Airlines under the same roof. beach at Beau Vallon is now ready to start receiving guests and their sales team were on hand to showcase the property.



UK trade rates Seychelles in Top 10 best destinations for romance for 2014 By the Manager PR STB Europe

The UK travel trade has rated Seychelles amongst the Top 10 destinations in the world for the best wedding and honeymoon experience for 2014. The results have been published in the Perfect Places magazine which comes out once a year to rate the UK travel agents’ best destinations in the world. Perfect Places is the addition publication of Travel Weekly which is the number one trade publication in the UK. The issue went out last week with 10 different categories being awarded, such as Best for spa, Best value for money, Best for Dining, Best for Nightlife, Best for Sports and Activities, Best for Luxury and Best for Nature. A selection of top selling travel agents from different agencies were asked to name their favourite places and a shortlist was then posted online with more than 300 agents completing the survey for the best destinations. Seychelles takes it place of pride in the ‘Best Weddings and Honeymoons’ category, amongst some of the most popular destinations in the world renowned for romance experiences. Six-placed Seychelles has been described as one of the easiest places to organise a paradise island wedding. “Many couples take their vows on the beach and other options include a ceremony at the grounds of an old colonial house. The Seychelles is popular because agents can offer different experiences, such as island wedding combined with an exciting safari in Kenya or a honeymoon in Dubai,” says the review. Speaking from London, the Seychelles Tourism Board’s manager for PR and News Bureau, Lena Hoareau, said that the news comes at a very good time as Seychelles is running a six-week campaign with Travel Weekly. “The good news couldn’t have come at a better time because the day Perfect Places hit the shelves, we started our own campaign with Travel Weekly and for six-weeks, Seychelles will be visible to over 30,000 travel agents in UK,” she said.


Seychelles is on the home page of the Travel Weekly website and agents are being encouraged to learn more about this destination by participating in a competition which can win them a FAM trip to the islands later this year. The campaign is running in both print copy of Travel Weekly and online, which together have an audience of 33,000 agents. “Perfect Places is considered the ‘hot list’ where the UK trade’s favourite destinations are ranked and we are very happy to be amongst the destinations that keep attracting attention in the travel industry. We expect that with the ongoing campaign, we are going to generate some excitement and definite results for this market,” said Mrs Hoareau. Seychelles’ ranking in Perfect Places comes eight months after the destination was voted amongst the Top 10 destinations for 2014 by the well-known Lonely Planet magazine in UK. The Seychelles’ Minister for Tourism and Culture, Alain St.Ange, said the visibility campaign for Seychelles was achieving its aims because more people are able to increase their awareness on Seychelles and also visit the islands. “We will continue to receive such good news because a lot of efforts are being put into marketing and making our destination more visible all over the world. The trade and consumers are recognising that Seychelles is not only a destination being high recommended on the market but it worth visiting for one of the most unique holiday experiences. Everything Excels In The Seychelles as was written by Ted Davis from Queensland as he was proposing we adopt this slogan. This proposal speaks for itself,” the Minister said.


Faces of STO


Regional Manager, S. Korea & Japan Joined to the Seychelles Tourist Office in S. Korea in 2007. In 2013, Julie Kim started to oversee emerging Japanese market as well as S. Korea. STO S. Korea & Japan has initiated the Seychelles Eco-friendly Marathon event since 2008, which has grown to be one of the top national events in Seychelles. This international event is visited by a number of runners and families from the four corners of the world. STO S. Korea & Japan is proud to be taking the initiative in exchanges of culture and sports between the Seychelles and S. Korea for the past 8 years.

Julie Kim is often called by her nick name, “daughter of Seychelles.” She loves Seychelles so much that she enjoys working for Seychelles. She is the co-writer of the first Korean book on Seychelles called “Seychelles, not just another place, another world” with Mr. Dong Chang Jeong, Seychelles Honorary Consul General to S. Korea. This book was listed “The travel book of the month” by Korea’s No. 1 book store, Kyobo. In line with the government’s policy to “Look East,” STO S. Korea & Japan will endeavor to attract more Korean and Japanese visitors to the shores of Seychelles to appreciate the unique experience which the last piece of heaven offers.

Aviation News Air seychelles flies to Paris again In a press release issued by Air Seychelles in May, it was announced that Air Seychelles will once again be flying twice weekly to Paris via Abu Dhabi with flight starting in July 2014. For this route, the carrier will be deploying its brightly coloured Airbus A330-200 which sits 235 in Economy and 18 in Business Class. Manoj Papa, Air Seychelles’ Chief Executive Officer, said: “Our return to Paris marks another milestone in Air Seychelles’ journey of growing its international operations by flying to and from key markets… France has deep cultural and historical ties with the

Seychelles and these new flights will allow more travellers to visit our island nation both for business and for leisure….The response from stakeholders has been great. Travel agents, tour operators and business partners now have additional choice and accessibility options, which will help to further promote what the Seychelles has to offer….” Beyond Paris, Air Seychelles offers guests connections to and from more than 50 cities in 23 countries across Europe.



All the goodies, all included Lose yourself in ‘ice’, our unrivalled inflight entertainment with the latest films, television, music and news - plus easy connection to phone and email.

emirates.com/sc Generous baggage allowance

Gourmet cuisine

Award-winning service

For more information contact your local travel agent or Emirates on 4292 700 or visit emirates.com

Photo credit; H Richards

The Black Parrot National Bird of Seychelles The VallĂŠe de Mai is home to the enigmatic Seychelles Black Parrot which is one of the flagship species of this unique UNESCO World Heritage Site. Although the national bird of Seychelles, the Black Parrot was only recently officially classified as a distinct species. After five years of intensive research the Seychelles Islands Foundation (SIF) is pleased to confirm that this new status has been recognised at an international level this month. This new status will ensure that the Seychelles Black Parrot receives stronger conservation protection and attention to safeguard its future.

The Seychelles Black Parrot is part of a small group of parrots (Coracopsis species) found only in the Western Indian Ocean. The Seychelles Coracopsis was long suspected to be a distinct species due to differences in ecology, size and calls. Until recently, however, genetic evidence to confirm this species’ distinction was lacking. Now, following intensive research on the breeding and ecology of the Seychelles Black Parrot by SIF, in partnership with genetic researchers at the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE) in the UK, this gap has been filled and a decision



by taxonomic experts at BirdLife International has been reached to officially recognise the Seychelles Black Parrot as a distinct species from the other parrots in the group! The species will now undergo an assessment for the internationally recognised IUCN Red List. The Seychelles Black Parrot has a global population of 520–900 birds, all of which occur on Praslin Island. It is the only endemic parrot found in Seychelles and despite not being as colourful as other parrots it is a beautiful and fascinating bird. It is also known for its melodious calls which can be heard echoing throughout the Vallée de Mai. Unfortunately due to the limited range of Praslin Island, small population size and limited good quality habitat the parrot is threatened and requires full protection. The several threats the parrot is facing include anything that might endanger or reduce the remaining palm forest habitat, such as fire, poaching or development, since the parrots depend on mature native palm forest to breed and feed. This dependence means that the continued protection of the ancient palm forest of the Vallée de Mai is essential to the parrot’s survival. There are many treasures to be found on a visit to the Vallée de Mai but seeing the Seychelles’ only endemic parrot is most definitely a highlight. Spotting them in the high canopy of the palm forest can be difficult, but taking one of SIF’s free guided tours will certainly help you in this search and you may be rewarded with a glimpse into the lives of these captivating birds.

Photo credit; P Woods

Photo credit; SIF



Photo credit; SIF

Roz an mer (Catharathus roseus)

By Mma Metsi Mr Ferdinand Vidot describes this plant as one which is very useful to everyday health, a little drink from an infusion of its leaves will apparently prevent a whole slew of malaise. He uses it as one would use a tonic, just a small daily dose. In his treatments however he advises its use for digestive ailments and for “purifying blood”. He uses the plant to treat diabetes, stomach ache, toothache, “stress”, diarrhoea and rashes. We find that Western science supports all of Mr Ferdinand’s use of the plant. They have found that the plant contained dozens of alkaloids. One called vinblastine, was found to have anti-tumor properties and medication made from this alkaloid is used to treat Hodgkin’s lymphoma, an immune system cancer. A second alkaloid, vincristine, is utilized for treating leukemia in children. Mr Ferdinand is right to “purify” the blood with it. Other laboratory studies suggest that it does have potential for treating diabetes even if the exact science is has yet to be pin pointed, Mr Ferdinand was already treating diabetes with it while the tests were being conducted. The dried root is an industrial source of ajmalicine, which increases the blood flow in the brain and peripheral parts of the body. Today preparations of this ajmalicine are used to treat the psychological and behavioural problems of senility, sensory problems (dizziness, tinnitus), cranial traumas and their neurological complications. Mr Ferdinand uses it to treat “stress”. Antibacterial properties have been found in the extracts of the leaves and the flower petals, seeds and other parts of the plant exhibit antioxidant properties all of which supports his promotion of the plant as a tonic.


Strip a plant of its leaves. Boil the leaves for 2-3 minutes. Leave the leaves to cool. Drink a small tea cup everday for preventive measures or a tall mug/glass for blood “purification” or stomach ailments Wash the affected area with the infusion for skin issues. Wash out the mouth with the infusion for tooth aches JULY - SEP 2014 ISSUE NO. 4 | SESEL SA!


Miss Seychelles Camilla Estico: My coming year in the throne



As of May 31st 2014, this vivaciously captivating young lady has been proudly wearing the crown as Miss Seychelles 2014. Granted, it has bearly been a week within her reign, that was in no way a hinderance to my curiosity-who is she? What are her plans as our latest beauty queen? Here she is in a nutshell and in her own words. “My name is Camilla, I’m 22 years old and I live at La Batie, which is in the North of Mahe. I was born in the Seychelles, but in 2005 at the age of 14, my family and I moved to the States because my parents saw the potential in me to be a performing artist. As we all know, the United States is the land of opportunity and my parents always wanted to give their children the best of everything-they knew that moving there would provide me with that. I graduated from the Howard W Blake School of Performing Arts in 2009, after which I attended Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre in New York for two and a half years. I am extremely family-oriented, and I owe thanks to my parents who from a very young age incorporated very strong moral values in us - Faith, respect, humility, gratitude. I am everything I am today because of them. I also care a lot for children and hope to have a family of my own someday. I have always been very artistic, which has also been inspired by my love for travel and different cultures. My energetic nature has fuelled my passion for life, and I am always ready to embark on new journeys and face new challenges. Throughout my life journey so far though, I would never forget where I came from. The States may have given me the opportunities I wouldn’t have -otherwise had, but Seychelles was always home. Living in the States made me the toughskinned girl I am today, but nothing could ever replace Seychelles and my love for my country, regardless of where I was in the world. I am a firm advocate of healthy living - I truly believe it is the key to living a long and happy life. In fact, my project’s objective (which I had to present as part of the beauty contest itself ) was to raise awareness on the rise of obesity in the Seychelles, an issue which I believe should be given more attention. It is a rapidly growing problem worldwide, but I do believe that obesity in Seychelles can be contained - partly because we are a small country, but also because we

have to be open to the fact that obesity is an epidemic that not only can be, but also needs to be prevented. I would like to achieve my objectives by making healthy living something fun - promote the fun of sports and make healthy eating an appealing way of life. I plan on working closely with the Ministry of Health in the coming year to get as much done as I can.

How have the past few months been so far?

“It has definitely been challenging, but like I said, I’m always ready for those! It has definitely had a positive impact on my life and who I am. It’s thanks to those three months that I am now equipped face this coming year as Miss Seychelles. There have been amazing and unforgettable experiences, such as our visit to Aride island. We were also lucky enough to get the chance to interact with many different people, which developed our social and communicative skills, which are a definite must-have as a beauty queen. Winning the pageant to me represents a new chapter in my life, one that requires a lot of self-confidence, faith and above all dignity and more than ever, I feel ready for the road that lies ahead.

So you’re half Cuban! Would you say there are any similarities between being Creole and being Latina?

“Oh yes! During my annuaI visits to Cuba, I have grown to see and appreciate many similarities between the two cultures. Both are a very warm people who strive to work hard to make it. Both are multicultural, which means there is never really a typical Cuban, as is the same for a Seychellois. That has taught me to embrace who I am even more-to be different but at the same time, to be one.

The theme for the pageant is “Beauty with a Purpose”. What does that mean to you?

“I believe that beauty is given to you for a reason-to be able to give something back. Winning the pageant will give me the opportunity to show to society what I can give back to them, and not just keep to myself. “

Do you have any mottos you live by?

“Live today to the fullest, because tomorrow is not promised!”

What is your message to the people of the Seychelles?

“From the bottom of my heart, thank you for the well wishes, the support and all your blessings. I am looking forward to embarking on this exciting new journey and my promise to you is that I will represent the Seychelles on behalf of all of you, and I will do that with all my heart and soul” “Sesel Sa” would like to wish Camilla a year of beautiful memories, and all the best as Miss Seychelles 2014.



Anse Anse Royale Royale Starting off an area called Fairyland, and finishing at Anse Royale’s charming catholic church, Anse Royale is one of Mahe’ longest beaches. With is picturesque powdery white sand, cool shaded trees, as well as being a generally a safe beach protected by a reef from the more powerful waves, this is a popular stop for tourists and locals alike. Locals tend to picnic along the beach especially at the weekends so get there early to secure your spot.

The beach is scatted with large boulders creating little coves closest to Fairyland. Towards the other side is a curved strip of perfect white sand with towering coconut and Takamaka trees providing cool shading from the hot sun. For those interested in exploring and snorkeling, the best spots are towards the beginning of the beach, around Fairyland and towards Ile Souris, a small granitic island within easy swimming distance from the beach.

Calm and clear waters can be found during the North West trade winds which blow from October to May. At these times, the beach is picture perfect and the waves lap gently. It is the perfect setting for a relaxed holiday, or for one with small children. Other times during the year, the beach can get quite choppy, which is still favoured by some more adventurous types, and though not classified as ‘rough’, one need to ease on the side of caution as the currents can be deceptively strong.

If you forgot refreshments, there is a collection of shops along the main beach, where you can stock up on your goodies and beach side there is also Kaz Kreol which is the perfect spot for lunch or dinner and here they serve excellent Chinese, Creole and Italian food including great pizza’s.



The Monuments of Victoria By Alexandria Faure A special thanks to The Seychelles National Archives, Marie Léon & Tony Mathiot. Once upon a time, the Seychelles was part of the Great British Empire that was under her majesty’s reign. In 1841 the town of Victoria was named in her majesty’s honour at the occasion of her marriage to Prince Albert. Seems like a long time ago but remnants of that majestic past still exist. Today Victoria is deemed - ‘the smallest capital’ in the world, however there is more to Victoria than meets the eye. Take a stroll around and you may find buildings and monuments that are still reminiscent of the colonial era and some that tell a very interesting story, and not to mention others that carry deep historical meaning. All in all, this little capital has much more to offer that could broaden the mind and make one travel back in time. Here is a list of National Monuments in Victoria and their historical stories.


The Queen Victoria Diamond Jubilee Fountain was unveiled on the 5th January 1900 by Lady Sweet-Escott, the wife of the administrator, Ernest Bickham Sweet-Escott as a celebration of Queen Victoria’s reign. The fountain is of pure artistic value and is made of porcelain, decorated with intricate and elaborate patterns with a small water tap and basins on the three sides. Crowning the Fountain is a 30cm statuette of Queen Victoria, of which is also believed to be the smallest representation of the Queens likeness in the world. Not many people know that you can quench your thirst at this artistically quaint water fountain. Not only that but it’s a beautiful work of art to admire. The drinking fountain is a historical symbol of the Seychelles’ appreciation of her majesty, and today epitomizes that our islands were once a part of the British monarchy.

The Queen Victoria Diamond Jubilee Fountain

Directions: Follow the zebra crossing outside the post office! It should lead you straight there – just behind the sitting benches.




A magnificent and majestic building, the Domicilium is the residence of the Catholic Priests, and a symbol of the early years that young Christian missionaries ventured on the shores of our regal islands to spread the gospel. Brother Gélase was a capuchin missionary from the province of Fribourg in western Swizterland, and arrived in Seychelles in November 1928, at a time when most parishes on the Island had a resident priest but no communal building to house them. Brother Gélase noticed this and made it his mission to built a

grand home for the missionaries. Thanks to him and the men who worked hard to build it, The Domicilium was built between 1930 and was completed around the end of 1934. As a result of the sheer hard work and its completion it became the first communal residence for the missionaries and resident priests in Seychelles, and to this day remains so. Truly unique and divine, the building is surmounted with an exceptional cross and represents the greatness of the Catholic Mission in Seychelles that has contributed to the strong Catholic Tradition on the Island.

La Domus

Directions: The building is next door to the Cathedral and overlooks the Olivier Maradan Street.


A beautiful little church with a heroic story to tell. It might seem odd that the church was built between 2000 and 2004, but this is where the story gets interesting; it was built in the original place of the Church that was built there before. The site on which the new Church now sits has great historical meaning. In June 1830, at a time when Catholic Missionaries seemed to have not yet arrived in Seychelles, Reverend William Morton of whom was an Anglican Missionary and Scholar from India came to visit the Seychelles, and reflected on the possibility of building an Anglican church. With the thought still in mind, the reverend left Seychelles after baptizing around a hundred inhabitants and at the same time quickly informed the Church of England that the Seychelles was in great need of a permanent chaplain.



And so, the post was offered to him and he returned to Seychelles in October 1832, still intent on building the church he had wanted to years before. But this dream of his never came true, due to the lack of support from the colonial authorities a year later he left Seychelles and returned to India. Thanks to a permanent civil chaplain, Reverend George Ferndinand Delafontaine, a decade later after Reverend William Morton left, the Anglican Church spread and grew in the Seychelles. As a result of his ministry’s influence and with the arrival of another civil chaplain in 1855, Auguste Fallet, plans to build the church began to finally materialize. Consequently, on the 15th May 1859 the small church of St Paul’s was consecrated by the First Anglican Bishop of Mauritius, William Vincent Ryan. Not only did this church serve as a place of worship for

the growing Anglican population, but it also became a light for those in the face of danger. In October 1862 a great avalanche devastated Victoria and many inhabitants seeked refuge in the church and sacks of rice that were able to be salvaged from the debris were stored in the bell tower. At this point in time the church became a significant sanctuary for the homeless families whose homes were destroyed in the disaster. As the decades passed the small church was extended and renovated to accommodate the growing Anglican population in Seychelles, many of whom were liberated slaves. Interestingly enough, King Prempeh of Ashanti who had arrived in Seychelles to seek exile was baptized in the church on the 29th May 1904. In April 1961 the church was given the status of Cathedral by Bishop Alan Francis Rogers in Mauritius, of whom also ordained the first Anglican Priest of Seychelles, Father French Chang-Him in 1963. As time went by the church began to deteriorate and it was decided that the building would be demolished and rebuilt. And so, on the 15th April 2004, Archbishop Chang-Him inaugurated and reconsecrated the new Church that still stands today. The new church is one of grace and beauty, yet it also symbolizes the history and importance of the church that was there before and the remarkable significance it was to the population at that time.


A grand white geometrical sculpture, with three pairs of extending wings that are exquisitely curved upwards, this symbolic monument has important patriotic value. The monument was inaugurated on the 4th June 1979 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the town of Victoria since it was founded in 1778 by Charles Routier de Romainville. The monument was designed and created by an Italian Artist named Lorenzo Appiani and with the help of the workers of Laxmanbhai Construction, it was completed and still stands today. Locals call it the Moniman Twa Lezel (threewing monument) for its unusual resemblance to the Seychelles’ tropical white tailed bird the Payanke. Although that could be true, the monument symbolizes the triadic origins of the Seychellois people, namely the three continents – Africa, Asia & Europe. The sculpture is unique and reminds the Seychellois of their mixed heritage and the harmonious blend of their deep ancestry.

St Paul's Anglican Church

Directions: Not far from the clock tower, just across the road from the taxi car park.

Moniman Twa Lezel

Directions: It stands at the roundabout intersecting 5th of June Avenue & Independence Avenue in Victoria.




Pierre Poivre was a French naturalist and administrator of La Reunion & Mauritius who was said to have had a strong willed character and is no doubt an important figure in the history of Seychelles. A striving adventurer, in 1771 he commenced expeditions to smuggle spice plants from the Dutch East Indies, of which included Cinnamon seedlings. Cinnamon being the important component in Poivres link to Seychelles. He brought seedlings he

smuggled back to Mauritius to add to the Jardin des Pamplemousses, which he had already created with Philibert Commerson. Upon hearing that Mahé had a suitable climate and fertile soil, Poivre was absorbed and committed to growing a spice garden in Seychelles. He dispatched his trusted representative, Antoine Gillot to travel to Seychelles under his orders and commence the task of cultivating a spice garden that later became ‘Le Jardin Du Roi’. Cloves, Nutmegs and most importantly Cinnamon grew in that garden

Pierre Poivre Statue

Pierre Poivre Statue

Directions: Across the street from Temooljee, just outside the old courthouse. Follow the zebra crossing from Temooljee to the courthouse – you can’t miss it!



until it was destroyed in May 1780. Luckiy enough, nature has her beautiful ways and wildlife had already propagated the cinnamon seeds over the hills of Mahé and as a result Cinnamon trees grow in pure abundance in the mountains today. This abudance was the main contributor to the Seychelles exporting its first cargo of 740,123kg of Cinnamon in 1908 and along with the 67 Cinnamon Oil Distilleries on the island. As cinnamon became more and more important, the crown lands of Mahé and Praslin were


Ernest Bickham Sweet-Escott and the Queen Victoria Memorial Committee, under the official chairmanship of Herchenroder had a plan. This great plan was resoluted in June of 1902, and it stated that a clock and clock tower would be erected in Victoria in loving memory of her late majesty Queen Victoria. All in agreement of such a project, the clock tower was made from cast iron and was purchased in London. It was shipped from London and arrived in Seychelles dismantled in nine cases, seven arriving on the 11th February 1903, and the other two mysteriously disembarked in Mauritius. Thankfully enough, the two misplaced cases arrived one month later and the clock tower project began to materialize. After nine days, the Clock tower was officially erected and was inaugurated on the 1st April 1903. It was originally black but was painted silver in 1935 to commemorate and celebrate King George V’s Jubilee. It still stands today as a symbolic monument to the appreciation of Queen Victoria and the majestic link Seychelles has with the United Kingdom. The Seychelles’ very own Little Big Ben!

leased for cinnamon cultivation. It can be said that it is thanks to Pierre Poivres rigour and ambition that Cinnamon became such an important economic source, a part of the plant family and culinary attribute in the Seychelles culture today. On the 2nd October 1972 the bust of Pierre Poivre was presented in the grounds of the Supreme Courthouse to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the introduction of Cinnamon to Seychelles - ironically by a man who had never set foot on the islands.

The Victoria Clock Tower

Directions: Stands in the middle of town at the crossroads of Francis Rachel Street, State House Avenue, Albert Street and Independence Avenue.




It was constructed in the 1850’s and was the home of Dr. Henry Brooks of whom was the Chief Medical Officer of the colony. Later on around 1880 The Eastern Telegraphic Company bought the house from Dr. Brooks and the engineers lived there whilst they worked hard laying the cable links between Seychelles & Zanzibar. The house was then later named Kenwyn, after a village in Cornwall of which it is thought is where the underwater telegraph cables came from. As the years passed, from the 1900’s onwards Cable Wireless was established and Kenwyn house became the official residence for the company’s many general managers.

In 2004 a South African company undertook the task of restoring the house that had fallen into decrepitude from years of climate damage to its infrastructure and it regained its traditional beauty. Kenwyn House is now a national monument and holds all the trappings of a colonial creole dwelling and is a bewildering beauty in itself. Today anyone can visit the house of which now dwell dazzling selections of diamonds and tanzanite jewellery by Jouel and duty free items, as well as books, local paintings and sculptures.

Kenwyn House

Directions: Across the street from the National Library.




The building itself dates back to the turn of the 19th Century when it housed the New Oriental Bank, of which after 5 years closed its doors. The building soon became the dwelling of the Legislative Offices of the administrator, Ernest Bickham Sweet-Escott. It is also said that on the 9th November 1903 that Mr SweetEscott took his oath as the first Governor of the colony of Seychelles in these very offices. However, there were others who also took office there. At some point the Eastern Telegram Company of

whom layed the cables connecting Seychelles and Zanzibar were positioned there. In early 1976 as the Seychelles prepared for its independence, the building went under a lot of renovations; it became the new honourable house for the Constitution. A magistrate’s court was officially established on the ground floor and a supreme court on the first floor. A beautiful building that has the creole touch and the timeless quality and historical significance still stands.

The Supreme Court House

Directions: Across the street from Temooljee and the Post Office.

Information obtained and researched from the Seychelles National Archives. Photography by Suzanne Verlaque



The Bel Air Cemetry

By Alexandria Faure

A special thanks to The Seychelles National Archives, Maria Léon & Tony Mathiot. The Seychelles has many sacred burial sites on the main islands and also on other islands such as Alphonse, Cousin and Cerf Island to name a few. These burial sites are gardens of history because historical figures, liberated slaves and families are buried there and each one have interesting stories of why they came to Seychelles, who they were and what they did to contribute to the nation that Seychelles has become today. Under a backdrop of rainforest and a tapestry of majestic trees, the Bel Air Cemetery evokes mysteriousness and an ancient disposition. The majority of people find cemeteries to be eerie and sorrowful, but the one at Bel Air is a different kind of cemetery. Bel Air cemetery was the first official burial to be opened on Mahé after the establishment of the French settlement in the 18th Century. As the oldest burial ground in Seychelles, the cemetery holds many secrets and many mysteries. The cemetery was declared a historical site by the Victoria City Council in 1965 after it was neglected when it was closed in 1902. And so, because of its historical significance it became a national monument in 1985. The visitor has the instinctive feeling that fragments of history still exist amidst the rubble, the graves and the family vaults. Prominent figures and the founding families of todays generation are buried there, and interestingly enough the family vaults of the very first French settlers can be found at the cemetery. Etienne Dupuy who was a district magistrate and acting civil commissioner in 1862, lies in the Dupuy family vault along with his five other relatives. Jean-Baptiste Remy D’argent after whom one of the most beautiful beaches in the world – Anse Source D’argent on La Digue is named after lies there. The buccaneer colleague of Jean-Baptiste Quéau de Quincy, the corsair Jean-Francois Hodoul who died in 1835 is also buried there, along with many other family names of which many people are descendants of on the



island. A lot of settlers who died in Seychelles that are buried there were born in Mauritius and migrated to Seychelles. In October 1862 many older graves were buried under the debris and mud of the Lavalasse (Avalanche) and many were dislodged and washed away by raging floods. But the cemetery still braved the natural disaster and some older graves still remain. The oldest one found in the cemetery so far, is to a child. A young girl named Catherine Heloïse Larcher of whom died at the age of 16. After seeking her records it revealed that she married young, at the age of 13 and had had 2 children prior to her death. Legend and creole folklore also has given the cemetery an immortalized reputation; that indeed the ‘Giant Boy’ is buried there. Giant? At the time of his death in 1870, at the age of 14 years old he measured a grand nine feet six inches tall! It is said that he could lift a sack of rice with only three fingers and that he was capable of dragging a pirogue out of the sea onto the shore. He was apparently named Charles Dorothée Savy and is believed to have been poisoned by neighbors who were frightened of his extraordinary height. His grave is out there in the cemetery and it should be quite a venture to find it. An interesting character lies at rest in the cemetery as well; Pierre-Louis Poiret who has been claimed to be the son of King Louis XVI who fled the French revolution and took refuge in Seychelles! No wonder this cemetery is a National Monument and workers are employed to maintain it in good condition. So much of the Seychelles’ history and founding families lie there. Not to mention the Seychelles’ very own Giant! Reference: ‘A deserted garden of history!’ ~ Tony Mathiot






A beautiful green turtle in the warm waters of Seychelles by C Mason Parker

Following on from the success of last year, the Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival will return to Seychelles again in 2014. The SSTF is an important date in the tourism calendar and hopes to raise awareness of the threats that turtles face around the world. Many tourists visiting Seychelles will be lucky enough to swim or dive with sea turtles during their visit. However, both the Hawksbill and Green Turtles that are found here are globally endangered. Turtles face threats worldwide such as poaching for their meat and shell, entanglement in fishing nets and the destruction of nesting beaches through coastal development. Here in Seychelles Sea turtles have been afforded full protection under Seychelles law since 1994, and it is now illegal to kill, possess or eat turtle meat. To raise awareness of these threats and to celebrate the marine turtle, the first Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival was held on Mahé Island on August 9th and 10th 2013. The festival was organized by local NGOs in Seychelles working in turtle conservation and research. The event was also supported by the Ministry of Environment, the Ministry of Education and the Seychelles Tourism Board. The opening ceremony of the festival took place at the Ministry of Education. There were presentations from leading turtle researchers in Seychelles, song performances, a prize giving ceremony for competitions that had been held in the school, and the ceremony was then closed by the Minister for Tourism and Culture, Mr Alain St Ange. The following day a ‘Family Fun Day’ was held on Beau Vallon beach. Several NGOs and government departments had stalls on the providing information on turtle monitoring programmes being conducted throughout the Seychelles, hosted interactive displays and turtle themed activities aimed at educating people of all ages about turtle conservation. Aside from the message of education, the day was all about having fun! Local DJs provided music while street vendors offered refreshments throughout the day. For the kids there was face painting, arts and crafts, a sandcastle competition and snorkeling. The second edition of the Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival will be held on 8th and 9th August 2014 and promises to be even bigger than last year. The opening ceremony will once again feature presentations on turtle conservation and a prize

Kids from La Rosiere school performing the 'Turtle in the Sea' song at the opening ceremony last year

giving ceremony for the winners of various competitions currently being run in local schools. On 9th August the Family Fun Day returns to Beau Vallon for more games and turtle themed activities. As the name suggests the day is expected to attract people of all ages, including both tourists visiting the area and members of the local community. In addition to the numerous activities being run there will be music, arts and crafts for sale and plenty of food on offer. An event not to be missed! For more information about the Seychelles Sea Turtle Festival please visit our Facebook page, or please contact seychellesseaturtlefestival@yahoo.com. First prize in the Recycled Turtle Sculpture Competition, 2013



Tagging Tur t les in Seychelles Photographer; Krisl Gopal

By Elke Talma Turtles have always been an integral part of the Seychelles culture. When the French settlers first arrived at our shores, turtles were captured in their thousands as a source of protein not only for those living in Seychelles, but also the neighbouring Mauritius and Reunion. It soon became clear, though, that the indiscriminate slaughter was not sustainable and people began to notice a decline in population numbers, but without scientific data to back these observations nothing could be done to protect the species. This is where tagging plays a key role in turtle conservation!

Why tag turtles?

One of the main reasons for tagging turtles is to identify individuals in a population so as to more accurately estimate the population size. Scientists often tag juvenile turtles at foraging sites or mature females on nesting beaches. By monitoring these tagged individuals, scientists can learn a lot about their complex life cycle, growth rates and sexual maturation, lifespan, foraging and nesting behaviour, distribution within our EEZ (exclusive economic zone) and long distance migration patterns beyond our territorial waters. With this information, decisionmakers can more accurately plan how best to manage turtle conservation, both nationally and regionally, and thus ensure the species’ survival. The first turtle tagging programme in Seychelles was set up in 1973 on Cousin Island. By the 1980s, tagging efforts intensified with Dr Jeanne Mortimer visiting over 80 islands within our EEZ in search of turtles. By the 1990s, there was enough scientific data to confirm that turtles were in serious decline and in 1994 the Government of Seychelles finally granted all turtles throughout Seychelles full protection under the law. Today, there are over 20 organisations monitoring and tagging turtles in Seychelles.

Taggged turtle. Photo credit; Elke Talma

Taggged turtle. Photo credit; Elke Talma



What types of tags are used in Seychelles?

Flipper tags or satellite tags are the main tagging methods used in Seychelles, although photo-ID has also been tested in Reunion and Seychelles. Flipper tagging: Globally, this is the most common tagging method used and each tag has a unique code, consisting of letters and a series of numbers (e.g. SCA1977), on one side and a return address on the reverse side so tags can be reported to the relevant authority. Turtles are usually double tagged to reduce the risk of tag loss, with one tag being placed on each of the front flippers. From these tag, researchers can know when and where the turtle was first identified, its size and if it was re-sighted and captured, how much it has grown and how far it travelled from its original tagging location. Satellite tagging: This method is less common in Seychelles because of the high costs involved. These tags are attached to the turtles’ shell and used to accurately track their migration patterns. Each time the turtle comes up for a breath of air, the tag sends a signal to special Satellites orbiting the earth allowing scientists to plot the turtle’s location on a map. Sophisticated satellite tags also record temperature, depth and other parameters that allow us to learn more about the turtle’s behaviour in near real time. A turtle named “Carol” made history by being the first Hawksbill turtle to be tracked outside Seychelles

waters – previously hawksbill turtles were believed to breed and forage within our EEZ. Photo Identification: The Kelonia Marine Turtle Observatory in Reunion developed a method for identifying individual turtles through photographs. It targets mainly foraging turtles, and allows scientist to gather data on the elusive mature male. Potentially, this method of identification could replace flipper tagging in the future but it relies heavily on public participation, particularly SCUBA divers and snorkelers who are likely to encounter turtles on coral reefs. As with flipper tags, turtles are tracked through resightings, but has the added benefit of being stress free for the turtle as there is no need to capture and restrain the animal for tagging.

What should you do if you find a flipper tagged turtle?

If you encounter a live tagged turtle, it is important that you DO NOT REMOVE THE TAGS. Apart from causing the turtle unnecessary pain, losing these tags means that if it is re-sighted, the researcher will not know the animals’ history and valuable information would have been lost. You should record the following information: the tag number, the date, location and the turtle’s behaviour at the time of the encounter. REPORT ALL SIGHTING OF TAGGED TURTLES (dead or alive) TO THE GREENLINE - 72 21 11

Turtle going to nest on Cousin Island



Image credit; Suzanne Verlaque

Do you think you know Seychelles?

Where Am I?

This image is taken by the talented Suzanne Verlaque, somewhere but where? 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.


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 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



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



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



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


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


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




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

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

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

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

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

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



Barefoot luxury in the heart of the Indian Ocean - pure nature, pure Seychelles, pure Raffles...

PURE LUXURY IN THE HEART OF THE INDIAN OCEAN Raffles Praslin, Seychelles Cradled at the heart of the Seychelles, on the island of Praslin, are exquisite villas touched by the sublime beauty of white powdered sands, opal-hued oceans and lush green hills. The ideal place to rediscover luxury, Raffles Praslin is infused with Seychellois spirit and the traditional Raffles butler service. The adventurous can explore the mystic forest of Vallée de Mai, the magical islands of Curieuse and La Digue, and the vibrant coral beds at the Curieuse National Marine Park. In fact, even the journey to the hotel is an experience of glorious, abundant, surprising nature.

Meanwhile, romantics might dine in our Curieuse Restaurant, enjoy the delights of Losean, down a Praslin Sling at the Pool Bar, meet for drinks and beats in the Danzil Lounge Bar, or unwind at the Takamaka Terrace. Taking your body, mind and spirit back to a state of pure relaxation, the award winning Raffles Spa is a destination unto itself, famous the world over. Only fifteen minutes by air from Mahé and a million miles from ordinary, Raffles is loved by those with a taste for the very best.

Forbes Travel Guide’s top 10 beach resorts around the world 2012 World’s Leading Luxury Villa Resort at the World Travel Awards 2013

For more information or reservations please contact Raffles Praslin, Seychelles Tel +248 429 6000 Email: bookus.praslin@raffles.com www.raffles.com/praslin

Profile for Seychelles Publications

Sesel Sa! July - September 2014  

The Voice of Seychelles Tourism

Sesel Sa! July - September 2014  

The Voice of Seychelles Tourism