Melanie Martins http://melaniemartins.com/ Thu, 02 Aug 2018 14:44:14 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.2 http://melaniemartins.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/cropped-favicon-32x32.png Melanie Martins http://melaniemartins.com/ 32 32 NORTH ISLAND http://melaniemartins.com/north-island/ http://melaniemartins.com/north-island/#respond Wed, 18 Jul 2018 12:41:21 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8748

My last stop in Seychelles was at the legendary North Island. With only 11 villas and accessible only by helicopter, it doesn’t get more private.

North Island has been a top choice for honeymoon trips or sunshine getaways by many personalities such as Prince William & Kate, George & Amal Clooney, Brad and Angelina Jolie, etc. so I was quite excited to finally discover this island.

If you have been following me on Instagram, you probably saw we flew straight from Mahe on a helicopter from Zil Air, the only operator of Seychelles.

The private ride takes approx. 15-20 minutes depending on weather conditions and gives you such a scenic view of Seychelles from the top!

Upon arrival, we were greeted by the resident manager and the Guest Relation who took care of us and escorted us to our villa.

We found many giant turtles on our way so we couldn’t obviously resist taking some photos with them! They are so cute, aren’t they?

The Villa & Beach

If you have been following my Instagram, you probably saw the Insta-stories with the private tour I did of our 450m2 villa. It was the biggest one-bedroom villa we have ever stayed!

It includes 2 bathroom facilities, a closet, a bedroom, a kitchenette, a terrace, a living and dining room, a pool, a huge garden and a home theatre + direct access to the beach.

Breakfast would be served every day at 8 AM from our amazing butler, Elaia, who would also collect our laundry every day and arrange for us any activity we would like.

From a special evening watching Casablanca in our private home theatre to an exotic bath decorated with palm trees, Elaia got everything covered.

The Infinity Pool 

The Infinite Pool was my favorite place on the Island! With incredible views of the beach and hidden between palm trees it was always empty and I was alone all the time with the pool just for myself! How cool is this?

Views from the Top

Diogo and I love to do hikes! Thanks to our guide, we reached the highest point of the Island in a short 20 minutes hike.

The view was fabulous and we could even see Silhouette Island as we had a 360º panoramic view!

We are going to miss so much North Island and Seychelles in general!

We were very impressed by the natural beauty and biodiversity of the Islands we visited, being North our ultimate choice for a romantic and private getaway involving fantastic beaches, warm weather, and plenty of sunshine.  

Have you ever been to Seychelles? What about North Island? Let us know!

Credits
Photography: Diogo Novo
Property: North Island

 

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Six Senses Zil Pasyon http://melaniemartins.com/six-senses-zil-pasyon/ http://melaniemartins.com/six-senses-zil-pasyon/#respond Wed, 20 Jun 2018 07:13:15 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8698

Seychelles was on my list for so long! As you guys probably know, I love to travel to exotic Islands such as Maldives, Bora Bora, French Polynesia, the Caribbean Islands, Hawaii, Santorini, Mykonos, etc.

I love Islands so much that I even live in one! Maybe I’m becoming an Island expert. 🙂

The Islands of Seychelles are considered one of the most (if not the most) photogenic in the world thanks to their incredible granite formation, so I was pretty excited about coming here and see it by myself.

While the temperatures in Seychelles are nearly the same all year long (around 25-28C), there are 2 different type of seasons: drier with more wind (June-October) or a bit more humid and less wind (rest of the year).

The green vegetation of Seychelles means you might get a short shower even in the driest month (August), but do not worry! Showers are shorts and they never last long!

We, therefore, decided to go in June for 17 days and were not disappointed! We loved it really a lot!

Our first stop was the incredible Six Senses Zil Pasyon located in a private Island called Felicité.

A bit like in the Maldives, Seychelles have some islands with only 1 resort (such as Felicité), and other bigger Islands with many properties, resorts, and hotels (such as Praslin, La Digue, and Mahe).

Felicité is located at just 20 mins from Praslin and 15 mins from La Digue. Six Senses provides a shuttle to La Digue at 9 Am and coming back at 5 PM, so you can spend the entire day in La Digue and come back after.

In order to reach Felicité, there are 2 options: either by helicopter from Mahe or by boat from Praslin.

Arrival Day

We arrived at Felicité during the golden hour giving us an incredible sky with pinky clouds. Pure bliss! We were so exhausted after the flight (which was over 10 hours!) that we decided to go straight to the villa, have dinner there and get some sleep.

The Villa

We got a sunrise villa with unobstructed views to the sea and to the magnificent granite rocks, which means the sun will rise everyday right in front of us. No need for alarms!

The villa was spacious, with an outdoor shower, bath tube, closet and a huge terrace with an infinity pool.

We got our own Personal Guest Assistant, Sam, which was making sure we would have our breakfast every day served by 8 AM in the villa, that our activities were all booked,  laundry cleaned, etc. She was beyond perfect!

The Spa & Pool

As you can see from our aerial shots, what makes Felicite Island so special is their incredible granite formation and how well they use it to create such a unique hotel in harmony with nature: the rocks were so magnificent and huge that it looked like Jurassic Park! In fact, those rocks have millions of years!

Six Senses managed to take perfect advantage of the nature surrounding them by building the pool of the Spa right on a gigantic rock formation! The result is obviously pretty unique and spectacular! I must say, this pool alone worth coming here at any time of the year!

Six Senses is also very reputed for their wellness treatments so obviously don’t forget to enjoy a therapeutic massage on the Spa or to book a Yoga Session in their wonderful outdoors! You won’t be disappointed.

The Beach & Other Activities

Hiking is another big passion of mine.

As you guys probably know, I love scuba diving, snorkeling, but I also enjoy climbing and hiking a lot.

Felicité has incredible hikes in the middle of the jungle where you can reach the very top of the Island after around 90 mins of hiking.

Start early in the morning and avoid hiking in the afternoon as it’s way too hot! We started the hike at 8 AM and finished at 10 and it was already quite warm.

For the afternoon, I would definitely recommend enjoying the many beaches the Island has to offer! We did a picnic on the beach and we were totally alone! Pure happiness!

Would I come back to Felicité Island? Honestly, in a heartbeat!Even after spending 4 nights there I feel there was so much more things we could have done!

Hopefully, we will come back one day!

Have you ever been to Six Senses Zil Pasyon or Seychelles? How was your experience?

Xx,
Melanie

Credits
Photography: Diogo Novo
Property: Six Senses Zil Pasyon

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ROSA CLARA SHOW http://melaniemartins.com/rosa-clara-show/ http://melaniemartins.com/rosa-clara-show/#respond Sun, 20 May 2018 14:33:10 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8624

I haven’t been to Barcelona for over 4 years! But this year I had the opportunity to revisit again one of my favorite cities in Europe thanks to Rosa Clara.

The famous Spanish bridal brand was hosting its annual fashion show, and I was invited to not only assist but also to get dressed by the brand and get a little preview of their collection directly on their beautiful Atelier!

If you follow me on my Instagram, you will notice I did many Insta-Stories about the wonderful venue at the Sant Pau Recinte Modernista, during the fashion show and at the photocall where I met Rosa, the designer.

The collection was marked by elegant shapes, long dresses but with a minimal design perfect for the modern but classy woman.

Rosa Clara‘s collection is all about simplicity with an eye to the details, delicate and feminine. I love every dress, but having a crush on embroidery, every dress with embroidery will always get my heart!

Congratulations to the wonderful show and make us all escape to a magical world of beauty!

Xx,
Melanie

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LEBANON http://melaniemartins.com/lebanon/ http://melaniemartins.com/lebanon/#respond Thu, 17 May 2018 14:16:23 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8555

Hello my friends! I know it has been a while I haven’t published a new article but I have been in Malta working on a special project that I will share with you all very soon!After over a month in Malta, our next stop was Lebanon! In fact, we were invited for the pre-wedding reception and the wedding “Alice in Wonderland” of our friends Alice Abdelaziz & Ali Tless.

I usually don’t attend weddings but this one was a very special one. After all, Lebanese weddings are reputed to be out of this world, full of extravagance, Met Gala style, and indeed, we were not disappointed!

Diogo and I decided to visit a bit Lebanon on our free days and prepare you a mini guide of what to do, visit, eat and where to stay! Hope you enjoy!

Where to stay: If you want to stay in a resort with private beach and far from the downtown, then I recommend the Kempinski Summerland, you will enjoy floating breakfasts on the pool and plenty of sunshine lying down on the beach.

If you prefer to stay in downtown near the wonderful Yacht Marina, Zaitunay Bay, which has plenty of elegant restaurants and lounges then the Four Seasons Beirut is a great option. It has an incredible rooftop pool + jacuzzi and open-air lounge with an Asian restaurant, plus their Spa is a must! Their therapists came directly from the Four Seasons Maldives! A room with balcony is a must!

I also recommend the Phoenicia Hotel if you prefer a majestic and emblematic Hotel with luxurious shops inside, fountains, and an over the top lobby area for Instagram pictures. You can also smoke shisha outside while lying on the pool with view to the Marina. I recommend getting a room with a balcony and view to the marina. You will get amazing pictures!

Where to eat: If the idea is to eat Lebanese food, then you must try Falamanki Cafe, El-Sharif Cafe, Leila, Metropole, and street food if you want to eat falafel. For Asian cuisine, the rooftop of the Four Seasons serves vegan sushi and amazing vegetarian rolls. If you want to have fun while eating, go to Iris which is a club on the rooftop that also serves dinner.

What to visit: Exploring Beirut is a must from Zaitunay Bay, the downtown, the Souk (it’s a modern shopping mall in open air, not the traditional Arabic ones), the Mosque and of course the beaches! Outside Beirut, explore Byblos – one of the oldest cities in the world and get a fossil souvenir. If you have time, you should definitely go to Mont-Liban and visit the many caves, grottos and Waterfalls Lebanon has to offer! From my side, I visited the Afka Waterfall, the iconic Baatara gorge waterfall, and Akoura.

Lebanese people are very friendly and big party animals so you will definitely have a blast there! From the amazing food, the clubs, the nightlife, and the many sightseeing, there is plenty to do for at least 1 full week of adventures!

I wish we could have explored more but we had the wedding and Events in between so it was very difficult to do more.

Have you ever been to Lebanon? Let me know!

Xx,
Melanie

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QATAR http://melaniemartins.com/qatar/ http://melaniemartins.com/qatar/#respond Sat, 03 Mar 2018 12:45:29 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8501

Hello my dear friends! Here we are back to the Middle East but this time to Qatar with the Inflow Family!

It was a very short stay of only 3 nights but we managed to meet so many amazing people!

I met Hanan, a French expat who works at Grazia Arabia, and many locals who were extremely friendly and excited to show us their country!

The first day we had the conference at the Ritz-Carlton Doha so between networking and the summit itself we were pretty busy.

But the next day we visited the Public National Library, the Islamic National Museum, the Souq Waqif (which is below), and we went to have dinner in the middle of the desert on a fire camp with Falcons, camels, music, and Qatari women doing henna to some girls!

It was such a short stay but I truly enjoyed it nevertheless! Can’t wait to go back to Qatar very soon and spend more time to visit Doha.

Here below is a short glimpse into our walk around the traditional Souq Waqif.

Have you ever been to Qatar? I look forward to going back very soon and catch up again with new friends!
Xx,
Melanie
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Festivities at Hurawalhi http://melaniemartins.com/festivities-at-hurawalhi/ http://melaniemartins.com/festivities-at-hurawalhi/#respond Sun, 18 Feb 2018 17:34:16 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8367

It was this time of the year again. February is a month full of Festivities.

There is the Carnival (which is not really celebrated in the Maldives), there is also St. Valentine’s Day (14th Feb.), followed by Chinese New Year Eve (15th Feb.) and the most important for me: Diogo’s 33rd Birthday (13th Feb.).

During this last 7 years together, Diogo never really liked to celebrate his birthday, but this time since we were in the Maldives (his favorite country so far), I wanted to surprise him and show him that Anniversaries can also be fun!

Even if it means you getting older every year!

We decided to go to the very new (1 year old) Hurawalhi Maldives – an adult-only luxury resort located in the Lhaviyani Atoll, famous for its worldwide known 5.8 Undersea Restaurant.

In fact, the 5.8 Undersea Restaurant is the world biggest underwater restaurant so far with 10 tables. I managed to get a table for dinner which was at 6 PM to 8:30 PM. We had a Vegan Degustation Menu which was absolutely incredible with fishes swimming all around us. Don’t forget to see the entire special day on my Insta-story Highlight!

For the 14th Feb., St. Valentine’s Day we decided to escape to a remote sand bank nearby called Dream Island, where we were totally alone in the Island!

Hurawalhi Maldives is also an incredible destination for snorkeling and diving where you can see manta rays, sharks, turtles, and plenty of fishes! During Diogo’s b-day, we spent the morning snorkeling around and Diogo even managed to take a selfie with a turtle! How cute they are, right? 🙂

The last evening, we went to their Champagne Pavilion watching the golden hour and drink some Champagne! After all, it was our last evening at the Maldives after 16 wonderful days!

Have you ever been at the Hurawalhi Resort or at their worldwide famous 5.8 Undersea Restaurant? Let me know in the comment section below! I will also post a video of our St. Valentine’s very soon on Facebook so stay tuned!

Special thanks to Hurawalhi PR and GM to have made this stay unforgettable!

Xx,
Melanie

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Six Senses Laamu http://melaniemartins.com/six-senses-laamu/ http://melaniemartins.com/six-senses-laamu/#respond Wed, 14 Feb 2018 09:25:57 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8443

After our stay at the Soneva Fushi, we went to the wonderful Six Senses Laamu Atoll, which was also created by Sonu Shivdasani and his wife Eva. However, unlike Soneva, we had to take a domestic flight since the hotel is located further down in the South of the Maldives.

We were greeted by the friendly Six Senses crew upon our arrival and took a speedboat to the hotel.

The staff adviced us to take off our shoes as they have the same concept of “barefoot” like at the Soneva, which we love!

The style boho chic is well present and all the facilities such as restaurants, lobby area, ice cream shop, etc. were all overwater instead of in the mainland, and windows-free so you could enjoy a fresh breeze and an unobstructed view to the ocean.

Diogo and I enjoyed a very romantic boat trip to watch the sunset with champagne which is one of my favorite activities in the Maldives. Sunsets here are a pure bliss!

The food was beyond wonderful and the buffets had a lot of vegan options! Even the ice creams had plenty dairy-free options!

The villa had an incredible transparent bathtub with views to the Maldivian crystal clear waters! The villa also kept the boho-chic style made of wood present in the Soneva.

While the Soneva Fushi was a Robinson-Crusoe experience with everything in the jungle, Six Senses Laamu is precisely the opposite: everything is made overwater while keeping the sustainable luxury that we love from both brands!

From the restaurants to the lobby, all the facilities are overwater which was quite a unique experience!

Have you ever been to the Six Senses Laamu or any other Six Senses in the world? Let me know!

Xoxo,
Melanie

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Soneva Fushi http://melaniemartins.com/soneva-fushi/ http://melaniemartins.com/soneva-fushi/#respond Sat, 10 Feb 2018 15:23:53 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8416

Soneva Fushi was on my bucket list for quite some time. It is worldwide known for its Robinson Crusoe and jungle style experience – quite unique in the Maldives. From sunset cruises, dinners in the jungle, to cocktails in a sandbank, this place is a Must!

As soon as I arrived at the Soneva Fushi, I knew my stay would be special.

Have you ever been to the Soneva Fushi? Or any other Soneva in the world?

Let me know!

Xx,
Melanie

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After 2 weeks in Malta we were pretty much tired of the cold and wet weather. Diogo was even ill with flu and fever. So we decided to leave for 16 days to one of our all time favorite destinations: Maldives!

We booked a roundtrip flight with Turkish Airline (Malta-Istanbul-Male) as they have not only wifi onboard free of charge but also bed-style seats on Business class, so we could sleep during the entire trip.

Our first resort was the wonderful Jumeirah Vittaveli known for its incredible Ocean Villas only reachable by boat! The villa was spacious with a first floor where we had a second bathroom and the bedroom area.

It was the most original villa we have stayed so far in the Maldives! The idea of total privacy was a big plus!

Finally we were back to the warm Island life!

The first evening we went to a private sunset cruise onboard of a luxury power yacht with vegan food and organic fresh juices onboard.

For dinner, we went to Fenesse (a French Restaurant) to enjoy a delicious vegan degustation menu accompanied with a bottle of Champagne under the stars.

Next morning, I finally tried Yoga! Yes, I had never tried it before. Our Yoga Master was from Kerala, India. Now, I’m completely in love with Yoga and can’t wait to go to India on a Yoga Retreat!

After our morning yoga session, we spent the rest of the morning snorkeling on a coral reef reachable by boat.

In fact, we went again on a private yacht accompanied with 3 staff members to discover a wonderful coral reef near the resort. It was amazing to do it privately, usually resorts do group sessions of snorkel. A private experience was much more romantic and we truly enjoyed it! The staff was very attentive and friendly.

After 45 minutes snorkeling around, we came back to the boat and enjoyed the ride back to the Island.

We were really impressed by the incredible amount of water sports, Jumeirah Vittaveli was providing to its guests.

I’m always afraid to get bored in the Maldives, but here we had plenty of activities to get entertained!

For evening, we went to the sumptuous Indian Restaurant, Swarna, and tried its degustation menu with 17 dishes! Don’t worry, they are actually very very small and come altogether in a huge plate, as you can see below:

The next day we went to do some jet-ski, which is an activity that I really enjoy,

Have you ever been to the Jumeirah Vittaveli? Let me know how was your experience!

Xx,
Melanie

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Royal Sandals Barbados http://melaniemartins.com/10-days-in-barbados/ http://melaniemartins.com/10-days-in-barbados/#respond Fri, 12 Jan 2018 11:28:08 +0000 http://melaniemartins.com/?p=8426

After our amazing cruise across the Caribbean, we came back to Bridgetown, Barbados. Diogo and I decided to stay in Barbados more 10 days to enjoy the beach, the good weather and the local hospitality!

We firstly staid at the brand new Royal Sandals Barbados, a luxurious all-inclusive adult-only Resort, that just opened in December, and I was actually the very first blogger/Influencer to visit it.

The Royal Sandals provides a service of Excellence with 3 butlers at your disposal.

From brining your morning coffee, to book your table at your favorite Restaurant (they have 6 restaurants in the resort being “La Parisienne” my favorite one), they really go above and beyond to make your wishes come true.

We spent 5 nights at the Royal Sandals, and I was amazed by the fact they provide 2 complimentary dives per day!

Indeed, they are the most divers-friendly brand in the world since everything from the equipment to the dive itself is free of charge. How cool is that? Diogo and I decided to book 2 dives as we never dived in Barbados before.

We managed to see many turtles, fishes, coral and shipwrecks at the Marine Park Reserve.

For our first night, we assisted to an incredible dancing show produced by locals. This resort is full of life and music! Every evening there is new show or entertainment activity. It’s always very festive!

We loved to spend the afternoon/golden hour at the rooftop pool where there was always a great vibe and free champagne with cherry, the sunset view was beyond stunning!

It was my first time staying at the Sandals, and it won’t be the last!

The fact they have so much included from food, beverage, to activities and diving, was a big novelty for me.

As hotels usually don’t include diving activities, they really distinguish themselves by including much more!

Have you ever been to the Sandals? Let me know how was your experience in the comment section below!

Xx,
Melanie

Credits
Photography: Diogo Novo
Property: Royal Sandals Barbados

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