Mauritius – The east coast of Mauritius is sprinkled with luxury resorts. ‘And we used to describe [this] destination as the Sea of Sameness, which more or less described the resort landscape [here],’ said Julian Hagger, the executive vice president of The Lux Collective. The company made waves some seven years ago by launching LUX* Belle Mare, Le Morne and Grand Gaube, featuring a hut-luxe aesthetic, but now they’ve gone truly bold – as in, Camille Walala bold.
For Salt of Palmar, they’re betting on a striking visual concept in order to attract a new type of traveller to a high-end destination that is better known for catering to more traditional tastes. ‘We’ve created a brand for people whose definition of luxury is not about lying on the beach for 10 days, cocktail in hand, with vast lobbies, 65-inch televisions and buffets’ Hagger explained. ‘It’s for those defined as Cultural Purists, who see travel as an opportunity to break away entirely from their home lives and engage sincerely with a different type of living.’
In other words: this is a beach resort for Millennial and Gen Z travellers, located where people twice their age tend to go on holiday. But if Salt of Palmar gets its way, the hotel might start a trend within this hospitality niche.
Complacency is the greatest threat for the Mauritius destination
So why did they go with Walala, she of the bold Memphis-like patterns, instead of more normalised Instagram catnip? Because she has, in their words, an uninhibited approach – just what they needed in order to challenge even their own views. That appears to have extended to the chosen construction materials, as they've managed to gather shine from everyday workhorses such as black-and-white ceramics and concrete, and the interiors co-devised by Julia Jomaa.