10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
"La Reserve was fantastic from the moment we arrived, weary from our long journey, until the moment that we sadly had to leave. Not only was the hotel staff friendly and accomodating, but our hotel room was large and beautifully furnished. We were traveling with our two sons (9 and 11) and the room was perfect and roomy enough for us all. The boys each had their own twin bed and we had a king size four poster bed with a beautiful white gauzy canopy. The bathroom looked new, with double counter top basins and a wonderful rain-head shower. We had a living room with satellite tv and movies (in English!) our own private patio directly on the beach. It was heaven! What really made our trip special was the excursions that are included. The hotel guide, Francis, was enthusiastic, very knowledgable and welcoming. He made every trip we took alot of fun for everyone on board. We loved going out on the huge catamaran and sailing to the different islands. The snorkeling was fantasitc, the best we've ever experienced. It is awesome that the hotel offers these free excurisons to their guests and it really made our stay at La Reserve unforgetable.. We HIGHLY recommend this hotel, you won't be disappointed."
- Travel date: Sun 6th of April 2008
Great Service, Beautiful Islands
"I stayed in La Reserve with my mother for 8 days. I must say I was very impressed about the facilites, service and environment within the hotel. Staff was A+, spotless rooms and the whole hotel was cosy and quiet. Food is excellent too (the jetty restaurant is cool!) and surely, the best must be the excursions with the catamaran. Francis (the guy in charge of the animation) was so friendly and did his best to speak ANY language customers would understand.
Management and reception staff were also really efficient with everything you need or ask (car rental and many other arrangements).
Seychelles on the whole is a real experience about nature, relax and water sports (snorkelling, diving, etc.). Pretty much recommended, and I'm pretty sure I'll be back someday. Bravo por La Reserve!"
- Travel date: Tue 12th of February 2008
great start to a honeymoon...
"Very relaxing. They also do free excursions which, for me, was the main attraction (each excursion is only done on a certain day each week but anywhere else charges a pretty penny for the same trips). Communication with the staff before arrival couldn't have gone smoother. I organized an incredible private sunset cruise & seafood bbq to surprise my wife and the staff covered absolutely every detail flawlessly. Snorkelling is great by the rocks on the right side. You can go out around the point....not a coral reef, but tons of different fish & marine life. The beach guy, Sandy, can help you w/ all that.
The Food & Beverage Manager greets everyone w/ a smile for breakfast & dinner and takes your order.....the restaurant itself is a perfect setting. The breakfast buffet was excellent and we found the dinners quite nice. For lunch the creole fish was excellent....The bartenders, Leny & Anadaniela, mix a good drink and always said hi w/ a smile.
While you're on the island, it's IMPERATIVE that you go to Anse Georgette. It's at the Lemuria hotel, but you can go eat lunch there then walk to the beach. The La Reserve staff can take care of all the pre-requisites. The casino on the island is neat as well, a real-deal plantation style house, and not too far from the hotel.
I'd advise tipping the staff directly vs. signing it onto the bill. As for the guy that ripped on the hotel, when reading the review you can see there was actually quite a bit he enjoyed, he just focused on the bad things. You're not going to the Ritz so don't expect as such.
For a Seychelles honeymoon, I'd advise start here & do a little exploring then bounce to something like North or Fregate Island or Banyan Tree on Mahe for the must-have privacy part of the honeymoon.
it was a great time that was everything I expected."
- Travel date: Fri 23rd of November 2007
Perfect for a Wedding and Honeymoon
"This hotel was a perfect venue for our wedding. We wanted a quiet 'no fuss' beach wedding , there were no guests, just us and the two charming witnesses from the hotel.
As soon as we arrived we were informed on the arrangements for the day we did not have to worry about anything it was all taken care of.
We were upgraded to a de luxe room, which was beautifully furnished . Our villa was yards from the sea and the view was breathtaking, I never grew tired of looking at it.
The beach is private and perfectly safe the only access other than the hotel was by boat. It was so quiet and peaceful some days it felt as if we were the only ones there. There was never any problem finding a sunbed with a comfortable mattress. We did go on a couple of the complimentary trips which was fun and well organised.
The sea was calm and some days so clear you didn't need to snorkel to see the many different kinds of fish. We saw rays and even a turtle.The sea was incredibly warm. There was some seaweed but it was cleared away every morning.
The wedding itself was very special. We had a cake which was to die for and sparkling wine. Our room was decorated with flowers.
The meals at the hotel were beautifully prepared, breakfasts were superb with a great deal of choice. We were Half Board and the evening meal consisted of 4 courses . The desserts were particulary special and on buffet nights I had to try most on offer. The Jetty restaurant was amazing with all the fish fighting for various bits of food that came their way.
The staff were always helpful and cheerful and took time to talk to us.
As for currency, we never had to change to the rupees but used Euros and dollars. It was about 20 minutes walk to the village where we stocked up on essential supplies, beers etc.
The weather was very hot for the first week, but unsettled for the second week, but we sat on our balcony when it was wet and just relaxed.
Usually mosquitos make a meal of me , but it was my first holiday without any bites. I gave up putting repellant on after the second day.
We can thoroughly recommend this hotel to anyone who is looking for a relaxing holiday in peaceful surroundings with fantastic views. We can't wait to go back, hopefully ,for our first wedding anniversary."
- Travel date: Sat 17th of November 2007
Very disappointed in this highly overrated hotel
"We selected the La Reserve hotel for our honeymoon after reading so many positive comments about the hotel on Trip Advisor. This is the first time that our experience has differed so drastically from the consensus. To summarize the good things: we found the rooms to be very nice, the setting beautiful, and the pool great. Andrew the pool guy, and Francis the tour guy, were also very friendly.
The problem areas are more numerous, the biggest being the utter lack of customer service, and downright disinterest exhibited by so many of the staff. To us, it appeared that they built a 4-star hotel then staffed it with the first 10 locals they found walking on the beach, then didn't train them. Where to begin.. We booked a honeymoon package, yet not one person offered us an acknowledgement or congratulations on that the entire time. We never met the manager, and at no time during our 9 night stay did anyone ever ask how our visit was going, not even when we checked out. For that matter, staff are very hard to find. On a given day the gift shop might be closed without reason and finding a bartender can be a challenge. On only one day out of nine was the pool bar open, and the pool restaurant was never open during our stay. Many of the waitresses are very young local girls who do not appear to speak English. Just trying to get an extra glass of wine or a pad of butter was a real chore at times as we often had to flag down the supervisor.
Speaking of the food, we found by far the best quality on the lunch menu that is for purchase and not part of the half-board package. The food on offer at dinner was average at best, and served by expressionless staff. I would recommend that future guests make sure and order enough wine or drinks ahead of time. The serving staff don't function as proper waiters, and requests for another glass of wine are often just forgotten in the mix. The breakfast buffet was perhaps the best meal of the day. It contained a lot of fresh, local fruit and eggs to order. One day we ordered a room service lunch that wasn't too bad. We put the tray back outside of our room and it sat for the better part of a day and half, through the night even when the local cats finished off the rest of our french fries. We guessed that maybe seven or eight staff had to have seen that tray and didn't bother to take it back or call anyone.
Cats. There are a number of very friendly, but severely underfed cats allowed to roam the premises. Many days we couldn't go out on our balcony without the cats crying at our feet begging for food. We tried to eat our room service meal outside but couldn't because my wife was scratched by a cat that tried to climb up her leg. Another cat jumped right on the table where we were eating.
I think that about sums up our experience with the hotel, but I would be remiss if I didn't say that we still had a relaxing time even with the problem areas mentioned. We heatily ate the food, even though it wasn't up to gourmet standards and we spent a lot of time by the beatiful pool. Andrew the pool guy was by far the friendliest and best member of staff.
The last thing I would recommend to someone else is that they bring really good, tight fitting shoes for walking in the water. The beach and water are quite rocky, with lots of pieces of small coral. It is very difficult to walk in the water without the right kind of shoes."
- Travel date: Tue 4th of September 2007
A Perfect Stay
"We stayed at La Reserve for 4 nights as part of our honeymoon in the Seychelles. It was perfect. The luxurious rooms, spotlessly clean and ours was right on the beach ( See the photo of the view from our room)
Food was excellent although slightly more formal than other hotels we stayed in. The set menu alternated nightly with a self servce buffet. It was great to watch the fish whilst eating.
The staff were so friendly which really made it such an enjoyable stay, especially the tour guide for inclusive trips. It is possible though to explore the island yourself by bus at 3SRpp (<25p) for a trip anywhere on the island The bus stops right outside the hotel. We went to find the black parrots between the Britannia Hotel and Sunset Cafe as we did not see any in the Vallee de Mai.
One of the trips was a Sunset cruise to Anse Lazio and Anse Georgette. Seeing Anse Lazio from the boat we were glad we had not taken the effort to get there earlier that day. Anse Georgette where we watched the sun go down and saw a school of dolphins was beautiful."
- Travel date: Fri 31st of August 2007
"We have just returned from a holiday in the Seychelles which included 3 days on La Reserve.
The rooms are superbly positioned and very luxurious. They are thoughtfully planned and krpt immaculately clean.
Unlike other places we visited the staff are attentive and cheerful. The trips were excellent and staff well informed.
All food was first class and a great variety was on offer.
I couldn't recommend this hotel highly enough."
- Travel date: Sun 19th of August 2007
"I stayed in this hotel for 7 days. The location is very nice within a national park in a bay.
The hotel beach is small and clean. However the sea water was not overly clean for few days due to some algae or some foamy dirt. However you can take a taxi or bike and go to neighboring beach Anse Lazio which is phenomenal.
It is very quiet and isolated hotel. The rooms were clean and well equipped. The hotel is not overcrowded. The rooms are dislocated in several lodges. The food was very good.
Stuff is professional but not overly warm, just professionally courteous.
I would recommend this hotel, especially to consider is as a base for sight seeing of the whole island."
- Travel date: Wed 1st of August 2007
Beautiful, helpful, delicious!
"We went to La Reserve for our honeymoon (with our 20 month old daughter in tow), and found it was a perfect choice. The small but secluded bay was a lovely setting, great for crab spotting in the evening and with good snorkelling potential. The swimming pool was fantastic (large enough for a fitness fanatic to do lengths, but with lots of fun areas for kids and seats by the bar!). The meals were all delicious, with a varied buffet breakfast and supper being either a buffet or a four course set menu - lunch was a bit more limited but a good selection along the lines of lamb chops, steak baguette, tuna kebab, etc, with rice or chips. The staff were very helpful in arranging taxis, advising on local knowledge issues, and accommodating children, and when we accidentally left some souvenirs behind they arranged to send them back to the UK and covered the postage themselves. If I had to be critical (I am never convinced by reviews that have no criticisms!) then I have to say it was a shame that some of the days trips were canceled, but then this was low season so this common everywhere I think - the trips we did go on were excellent (the guy organising them, Francis, was especially lovely). All in all, we would recommend it whole-heartedly for a place to relax, as a couple or a family, and a base to explore the archipelago."
- Travel date: Tue 19th of June 2007
The perfect place to unwind
"My girlfriend and I just returned from 7 nights at La Reserve, and it is difficult to find a bad word to say about the place - in a word, amazing.
The staff are so warm and welcoming that you will regard them as friends by the end of your stay. Nothing is too much trouble, and you will be constantly surprised by their attention to detail.
The hotel, nestled in its own bay within a marine reserve, has a very exclusive and personal feel.
The pool is huge, tropical and expertly maintained. The private beach is good if not overwhelming, with the stunning Cote d'Or, wth various watersports, just 5 minutes walk away.
A real highlight, as the reviews below suggest, are the excursions run by the hotel, mostly at no cost. Expertly run by the effervescant Francis (a bit of a local celebrity), they range from the vallee de mai (one of two UNESCO world heritage sites on the islands), to BBQs on Curieuse and Grand Soeur islands (Curieuse boasting a giant tortoise reserve, Grand Soeur one of the best beaches you will find anywhere in the world), to world class snorkelling at St Pierre and Coco islets, to a sunset catamaran cruise to Anse Lazio and Anse Georgette.
The food alternates on a nightly basis between buffet and set menu and, whilst not outstanding, is good both in terms of variety and quality. In any case, the food would have to be two michelin starred to match the restaurant's atmosphere and setting, on a long jetty reaching out in to the clear blue waters of the Indian Ocean, with hundreds of tropical fish playing in full view beneath you.
I would certainly prefer the deluxe rooms, which each have very good, newly renovated decor, a huge bathroom, a four poster bed and a romantic balcony, over the superior rooms, which have not been renovated.
Just one tip owing to the Seychelles' curious forex position - remember to bring Euros, pounds or dollars with you !"
- Travel date: Sat 28th of April 2007