Photojournalist, Robert Michael Poole and Vlogger, Marcy Yu are what you would call “digital nomads.” In other words, they combine work and travel using technology and social media. Robert shoots candids of his travels to faraway places, and writes about his experiences while Marcy works on her digital travel diary and coveted Instagram account. The two travel companions flew to Mauritius for a barefoot holiday made of up wet bikinis, salty hair and a five-star resort. 
Boarding passes? Check.
We jet to Mauritius – Moris in Creole -, a speck in the middle of the Indian Ocean for sightseeing, excessive use of the chaises-longues, and a dozen fried chilli cakes, or two (the local delicacies are heavenly we hear).
Through the airplane window, we take in the views from above: the inside of the island is mountainous and green while the coasts are studded with coconut palms and casuarina trees, natural windbreakers. The urban sprawl spans the capital, Port Louis, and a string of cities: Curepipe, Quatre-Bornes, Beau-Bassin, Phoenix. Two colours stand out: a vibrant green and bright blue.
First things first. We check into the gorgeous Heritage Awali Golf & Spa Resort. Its earthy tones of saffron and ochre and dark wood furnishings reflect the Mauritian métissage. We learn that Awali in Swahili means a return to the source. This seems just right as we have, after all, crossed the Indian Ocean to reconnect.
Our room is a peaceful haven. It is light and airy, and overlooks the turquoise warm waters. Before unpacking we decide to tour the estate and get our bearings. We hop into the buggy and set off to explore the surroundings. The hotel is tucked away on an estate that has its own golf course, nature reserve, beach club and a dizzying array of restaurants and bars. The tour ends at the Cavendish – located at the sister hotel Heritage Le Telfair – , a bar that is reminiscent of old British smoking-rooms during the colonial era, for high tea, a tradition inherited from the British colonial era (milky tea with spoonfuls of sugar is a local favorite and is sipped throughout the day).
We start the day off right with a hike at the Frédérica Nature Reserve – 1,300 hectares of protected nature, waterfalls, endemic plants, birds, deer… you name it! The trails take us deep into Mauritius and the views of the horizon make for perfect Instagram shots. We work up quite the appetite and by lunchtime, we are hungry (but not hangry thanks to the year-round summer vibe).
Lunch is out of this world… Li pied dan dilo, they say, which in Creole means “feet in the water”. The picnic table is – quite literally – in the water! We dig into the plates of fresh local produce, healthy salads, and cool refreshing lemonade. We have to pinch ourselves to be sure we are not dreaming. Happy and with full bellies, we make our way to a pergola in the shade where there is a swingwing bed, perfect for a post-lunch afternoon nap.
Several factors contribute to a destination being designated as relaxing: an abundant supply of beach chairs, a gentle breeze, the lapping of the waves, coconut palms and the most obvious – a luxury spa. We pop by the spa village (2, 000 square-meters – you heard us right- of bliss at the heart of nature). The upscale Millesime Collection leaves you feeling cleansed and whole. We pick the signature coconut massage followed by a dip in a floral-scented bath (this may have been the highlight of our trip).
We take a stroll to Heritage Le Telfair, a superb hotel built in a style that pays tribute to the Creole architecture of the island. We walk up the alley bordered by royal palms that leads to the entrance of the hotel, which draws its inspiration from homes from a century ago – canopies, verandas, columns, shutters and furniture reminiscent of the East India Company.
We settle on Gin’ja, a Pan-Asian beachside restaurant that evokes the East India Company’s trading posts in Asia. We opt to share a platter of sushi and a couple of entrées. It seems intuitive that one would get amazingly fresh seafood on an island, and Gin’ja does not disappoint. Each piece of sushi melts on your tongue, and the zesty flavours explode in your mouth. Needless to say, we are headed for a food coma.
Maybe our sweet-tooth is to blame or maybe it’s the sugary-sweet smell of crêpes wafting through the air, but we end up stopping by the Kiosk Gourmand for a scoop (okay, more like two) of artisanal ice-cream. What a perfect summer treat!
If we had to choose between airplane food and Awali’s lavish buffet… Well there’s no question about it. We pile our plates high with pancakes, seasonal fruit, granola, bacon and eggs and take a seat at a table at the edge of the shore. We simply adore our Mauritian breakfast! We reluctantly pack our suitcases – it is hard to leave. What we’ll miss the most: the friendly staff, the scenery, and having tons of dining options and things to do!
 This travel diary is a work of fiction, inspired by the photography of Robert Michael Poole And Marcy Yu taken during their stay at Heritage Resorts.