40th anniversary of the Route of Rhum

For its birthday, the legendary transatlantic solo sees things  in big with 125 boats engaged from saint-malo.  A grandiose edition that reminds us of others…

In 1978, after sailing for 23 days, 6 hours and 56 minutes and 3,542 nautical miles in the wake of Michel Malinovsky, Mike Birch overtook just before the finish line. Winning by 98 seconds, the Canadian sailor entered the history book of yacht racing. With that neck-and-neck battle for the finish line, Mike Birch also took the Route du Rhum into transatlantic racing legend. That first event embraced the racing philosophy harnessed by Michel Etevenon when he created the race with the support of sugar producers and distillers: a confrontation of professionals and amateurs, monohulls and multihulls, of every size imaginable, all the way from Saint-Malo to Pointe-à-Pitre. It was a way of encouraging innovation, leaving each sailor to design his own vessel. It was also a reaction to the restrictions imposed by the OSTAR, the English transatlantic race which limited the size of competing vessels to a 60-foot maximum.

Since 1978, the Route du Rhum has been the crowning glory of sailors and made a lasting impression with its giants of the seas steered single-handedly through the autumn conditions. Philippe Poupon, with his 22.8 meter hydrofoil trimaran, was the reigning master in 1986, winning the race with a 2-day advantage over the boat that came second. In 1990, those who thought a woman couldn’t win had to eat their words when Florence Arthaud was first to cross the finish line. Despite enduring electrical failures and suffering from hemorrhaging, she arrived triumphantly at the helm of the Pierre 1er, her golden trimaran, as the sun was setting on Pointe-à-Pitre. In 1994, the monohulls and multihulls all set sail together, but there was a winner for reach category. It was Laurent Bourgnon with his face of an angel who crossed the finish line first on his 18-meter trimaran, Primagaz.

Since then, every Route du Rhum race has attracted the greatest skippers. In 1998, Laurent Bourgnon, Loïck Peyron, Alain Gautier, Francis Joyon and Catherine

Chabaud were all in fierce competition. Laurent Bourgnon won again that year, but the public will also remember baby-faced Ellen MacArthur, a 22-year-old English woman who came first in her 50-foot monohull category… Year after year, the number of categories increases (Class 40, IMOCA, Ultimes, Multi 50…), but the Rhum style remains, loyal to the original spirit, with enlightened enthusiasts taking to the Atlantic ocean.

They were 125 on the starting line on 4 November in Saint-Malo, a record for celebrate the 40th anniversary of this race. And considering the pedigree of the competitors, we will be careful not placing any bets on the identity of the winners!

Nicole plate

Retrouvez-nous sur les réseaux sociaux

The sketches of Benoit Desclos le Peley

Inspired by the nature on the island, the artist painted the pictures that colorfully decorate the rooms of the créole beach hôtel & spa. Portrait of an artist of passion.

Born in Nantes, a port town by the Loire River, Benoit Desclos le Peley has always been fascinated by light, the secrets of wild coastlines, and the magic of saltmarshes. At the Van der Kelen school of trompe-l’oeil in Belgium, he learned the traditional techniques of decorative painting, before founding the Atelier Desclos le Peley. He then moved on from one site to another, working in Japan, New Caledonia and Russia, among other places. These experiences left their mark on the artist, whose curiosity and sense of observation contributed to the aesthetics of his work. “When I started working on the hotel’s paintings, I wasn’t very familiar with the island’s vegetation. When I explored, I discovered an extraordinary density of powerful plant and animal life, amid roots and tangled lianas, and an incredible harmony. That was my greatest source of inspiration. The profusion, the diversity and all that color could only lead me to draw, then to paint.”

Follow him on www.atelierdesclos.com

Faustine François

Retrouvez-nous sur les réseaux sociaux

A perfect healthy and invigorating day at La Créole Beach Hotel and Spa

You need a true break? You want to take a real day off, and reconnect with yourself? This is my ideal day off that I am sharing with you! La Creole is a small paradise where I am sure you’ll be delighted to rest in and restore your soul while discovering the amazing island!

Waking up for a good day


Take a moment to breathe in your comfy bed and feel the moment. Try to realize you’re gona have an amazing day, full of wonderful experiences while listening to the birdsongs.

Get ready for a little walk before having anything as a breakfast but just water. Take this time just for yourself, go discover the luxuriant nature that the private park offers you. Just walk following the way your instinct shows you, trying to observe and be part of the peaceful and quiet atmosphere of the early morning. Take no phone, just keep that moment for you and live the moment.


Go the way you feel it, you’ll be led by the soft sounds of mother nature, birds singing, lizards and butterflies as companions of this sacred morning pilgrimage of yours. You might come across the hidden pier on the back side of the hotel, and anyways you’ll come across amazing views over the islands from very cute coastal path just everywhere, just randomly walking!


You’ll see you’ll feel extremely relaxed very easily wherever you go within the large area of the Hotel. Use this perfect time to maybe do some positive affirmations. And then follow your instinct for doing what you want.

Breakfast with a view


When you’re stomach feels it, it’s time to head up to breakfast! You’ll have plenty of what Guadeloupe has best to offer! Of course, you can take a croissant, since they have all the best French pastries and fine food that I admit are very tempting. For this special day, I would choose a very healthy meal though. Maybe scrambled eggs with oatmeal, seeds and dried fruits on it. Coffee or ginger tea, and a grapefruit juice. Even if would decrease my sugar consumption that day, Iet’s admit I could not resist anyways to savor some local fruits of the gargantuan but delicate buffet.

Again, be ready to feel entirely dazzled by this special moment. I have to emphasize this moment of your day too, cause you can make it one of your best private memories. I personally kept these breakfast moments engraved in what I call my “positive memory card”.

The terrace of the restaurant “La route des Épices” is a small heaven in mornings too. First, the view is amazing, my best spot is on the very border of the restaurant so then you can just have the amazing nature in front of you. The view is breathtaking, you’ll be able to stare at the ocean, and the palm trees etc.

There is also a spectacle that you can stare at: the positive environment. Children laughing, lovers sharing, families enjoying the morning miracle, happy waiters smiling while working, waves caressing your soul, the sound of the wind dancing with the trees and the bird singing! This is something I really LOVED, it is something you have to experiment once in your life because it is truly a happy indescribable moment.  You’ll be sure visited by the small little birds, the “bananaquit” are the ones you’ll see the most coming to you to say hello and sometimes seeking for cane sugar!

Discover the hotel and enjoy


When you feel totally fulfilled with joy and are done with the breakfast, you might wana discover the hotel and look for the things you would like to do during the day, according to your tastes and desires. Discovering the gym center? Doing shopping window at the boutique tracking the souvenirs you wish to acquire?  Writing postcards at the bar having a local café? Take an appointment to the spa for special treatments?  – maybe I would use that time to read or write chilling on the beach of the hotel. Perfect time to let it go and focus on nothing but relax! So just listen to your instinct again and just be you. Maybe chit chat with clients of the hotel, meet with locals and ask for recommendations for places to visit. This, you’ll be perfectly told at the concierge service desk where the team is really helpful and can take the time and listen to your desires to suggest some tours or ideas.

Afternoon: Refill the battery and enjoy again!


For lunch time I would go for a local salad with fruits from “La case”, the cute little pink house on the beach –  and I would eat in front of the ocean or sat on the pear, just me myself and I. I might not resist the caffeine call and would then order a latte at the bar… I would take this with a book and enjoy under the air-conditioning, laying on the large sofas, inside of the hotel at the bottom of the Spa entrance with an amazing view over the pools and the ocean.

Afternoon time would be perfect to jump into the ocean and maybe do some paddle and reading with the sound of the waves.

In the evening I would go for a treatment at the spa, and enjoy back and forth between sauna, steam room and also enjoy the terrace of the center till the sunset.


Night is gently coming


Nighttime is your moment again, do whatever makes you happy. Ginger tea and a meditation in the terrace after a gym session? Yoga on the beach? Drinks with the soulmate you just met in the lobby?

Sharing snacks drinks and music at the bar thanks to the jazz night of the hotel with new friends? If not coming with just yourself reconnecting with your beloved travel companions.

Whatever you’d have done that day, let me make you this promise: you’ll remember that special day as one of your best memories.

Find more on @marinemiquelparis

Retrouvez-nous sur les réseaux sociaux

The cooks feast

Arrivée des cuisinières à la cathédrale
Arrival of the cooks at the mass to bless their foods

One day at the deep of the Creole traditions

Each year, on the 10 of August, the ladies take over the power in Guadeloupe highlighting the rich culture and tradition of the islanders.  Fans of food will mostly remember the delicious dishes, all those local specialties with flavors that will ignite your nostrils, awake you bud taste and open your appetite like no others.

L'association des Cuisinières de Guadeloupe
The cook  association Guadeloupe

The Cook feast is more than just that.

From Generation to generation, the cook ladies cultivate the spirit of the Tradition in a fraternal way, as a reminder of the essence of this movement. This association counts over 200 female chefs, from 14 to 97 years old who proudly show off their islander identity wearing their traditional costumes which are famous for their bright colors and delicately knotted hats that they wear with elegance and certainty.

For over a century, this tradition comes alive every year since the source of this popular movement on the 14 of July 1916.

Beginning of last century, a maid loses her husband and barely can find enough money to bury her lost husband. The word goes around and earing the story of this widow ‘s situation, 5 ladies decides to find a way to help her. They start to collect from one maid to another and soon, a new saying comes to town: the « Cuistot Mutuel » (mutuality chef). This became the first mutual funds organization in Guadeloupe. This guarantee to its members to have a decent burial upon their death. Since then, the Ladies’ cook carry on this tradition and offers their services at funerals.

Messe des Cuisinières à Pointe à pitre
The ladies Chef mass in Pointe à pitre

The true watchdog of the tradition

Over the years, these ladies have built a strong association defending with pride the culinary tradition of the islands along with the traditional costumes and ceremonial rites in Guadeloupe. True watch dog of the Guadeloupean culture, this ladies wear with pride their handmade traditional costumes, easily noticeable by the hand stitched apron with the effigy of St Laurent, their saint.

Some would say you have to have a certain does of humor to use St Laurent as your patron saint.

Father Laurent de Rome was condemned to be burn live because he refused to give away to Rome the treasures of the church to feed the army of the empire. The legend says that his last words were:

« Here we go, miserable soul, now that you have grilled one side of me; turn it over then eat. »

…and there he becomes the Patron saint of the chefs, cook and the meat grillers!

Portrait de femmes remarquables: les Cuisinières de Guadeloupe
Portrait of remarkable women

La procession : time to share and joy for all

After the mass, the ladies Chefs meet at the entrance of the cathedral in their traditional colored costumes. Lining up to start the procession, the chefs carry various local dishes, baskets filled with local fruits and vegetables, kitchen utensils and other local delicacies. The president and her assistants announce the beginning of the festivities by shaking a serenade of bells and start the march. At each street corner, they announce their presence and give away the best meals along the procession. They will go all over cross town singing along the way at the rhythm of the Gwo Ka and sharing with the locals, including some amazing cakes and sweets!

Clochette de la présidente de l'association
Clochette de la présidente de l’association
Défilé des Cuisinières après la messe
Défilé des Cuisinières après la messe
Les futures codons bleu de l'association des Cuisinières
Les futures cordons bleus de l’association des Cuisinières

Then, it is time to all meet for the outdoor food festival. The ladies Chef (Cordon Bleu) will make you taste their specialties and creativity of their unique artistic skills (there is a charge for lunch) One of the best gastronomic experience in the island! later on, music will take over and dancing through the night will be the ultimate finale.

Retrouvez-nous sur les réseaux sociaux

Our Top 10 favorite beaches in Grande-Terre, Guadeloupe Islands

Just close your eyes a minute and imagine 180 nuances of sand colors from bright white to deep dark black with a whole palette of beige, rose, pink and gold in between. Now deep your feet in the warm water between 78 degrees in the winter and up to 88 degrees in the summer: you are now in paradise.

Datcha beach

Across from Gosier island, this beach is easily accessible from the village of Le Gosier. It is an easy swim on that beach and experimented swimmers can even swim all away to the Gosier island; just make sure not to swim alone if you plan to swim to the island. Part of the beach is lighted at night for those who like the midnight swim. The beach is also equipped with showers after a great day at the beach

Ste Anne beach

Very popular, this is the type of beach you see only in a postcard with turquoise crystal  clear waters. With fame comes often the crowd and this beach can be crowded at time and a bit noisy. People like it because it is the perfect beach for children with very low waves as the bay is protected by the natural coral reef. Be aware of the urchins who love to stand on the coral barrier. If you are lucky, you will see an iguana; they are used to the human population and will not hesitate to come to you in quest of a treat. Many restaurants along the beach with different taste of the local food and at very reasonable prices. You will also meet with the sorbet vendors along the beach; the coconut sorbet is a must to try.

Caravelle beach

A very large beach that could be easily viewed as 2 different sections. One side is really windy and the perfect spot for kite surfing, surf boards and speed sailing. The other side is more quiet and perfect for family with children as the beach is naturally protected from the winds. Water is very shallow which is perfect for young children. This section has also a lot of shades which is a great add on for the hot sunny days. For a few euros, you can rent a beach chair so you can travel light. It is not always easy to find a parking spot so you will have better luck to park a bit away and walk to the beach. It is a great spot for snorkeling so don’t forget to bring your equipment.

Bois Jolan beach

a ¾ mile long wild white sand beach bordered with coconut trees and turquoise waters. Good beach for children but please make sure to wear shoes because urchins live there. During the week days, this beach is very quiet but if you like local music and animated beach, make sure to go there on the weekend where barbecues and live music is often the scene. It is also a great spot for scuba diving.

Anse des Châteaux (Castle Bay)

wild and beautiful but also can be dangerous due to strong waves and currents. However, this beach gives you the impression to have reached the end of the world. You can take the natural path that will guide you to la Pointe des chateaux: a great sightseeing spot   from where you can see the other islands at the horizon like La Desirade island while enjoying the refreshing breeze.

Les Salines beach

Often windy, it is a large beach with coarse white sand spreading between the ocean and the swamp, a unique protected eco-system. You still can swim as the bay is protected by the coral reef. By strong winds, the waves are crashing onto the coral reef ending on the shore with strength. The coral reef is a bit eroded but has a multitude of bright colored fishes. This beach has very little shade and it is a great beach in a hot day as the constant breeze keeps you refreshed.

The Blower beach

More protected from the winds than the castle beach, the blower beach is a beautiful white sand beach that you will find on a postcard, nearby St Louis! On the north of the beach, take the hiking path to the mangrove area where you will find a few great sightseeing spots. A bit further away is a boat cemetery with boar wrecks and a few tombs decorated with shells. The beach is well organized and perfect for children. If you want to avoid the mosquitoes, make sure to leave the beach before 5pm as they take over the sport at that time. Don’t forget to taste the famous coconut sorbet that the local are selling along the beach: a local delicacy!

The door of hell beach

Despite the scary name, this is a great small beach enclaved in between the cliffs. Be aware of the strong currents at the entrance though! We recommend you to wear good shoes in order to reach that beach; you will have to climb on and in between sharp rocks! as you arrive at the end of the path, you will the legendary « trou mam koko » » A legend telling that Madame Koko would have sold her soul to the devil in exchange of good fortune. But as she decides not to follow the contract she signed up with the devil, the devil takes her away to the ocean. Since then, several sailors and fishermen have seen a woman walking with an umbrella on the water with a sinister horseman walking on her side before disappearing onto the deep waters.

The clear raisins beach

Located nearby St François, this beach is planted with numerous raisin trees. This is a white sand beach with clear water and protected by a coral reef, At the horizon, sitting comfortably under the shade of the trees you will see the Saintes and La Desirade islands.  This beach is busy on the weekend and you will be able to have a taste of the local delicacy: the famous Bokit guadeloupéen, a delicious sandwich sold on the beach…

The beach of the other side (La Plage de L’Autre Bord)

Golden sand and coconut trees, the perfect cocktail for a great day on the beach! Very well-organized beach with showers and public toilets along with a few huts on the shade. The water is great and the beach has quiet waters. Nearby, there is an aquatic park with a swimming pool and a famous 150 feet water slide, a plus for kids.

Retrouvez-nous sur les réseaux sociaux