Luxury Mauritius went to meet Christine Marot, CEO of Blue Life Limited, the property developer behind the spectacular Azuri.
Located in the north-eastern part of the island, between Grand Baie and Roches Noires, a village has emerged from what was formerly sugar cane fields by the sea. The region’s absolute place to be since 2013, Azuri is designed to bring together Mauritians and foreigners in a luxurious and relaxed living environment. Christine Marot tells us more on this outstanding project and shares her optimism with us.
Can you tell our readers what the Azuri concept is all about?
With Azuri, we wanted to create a unique atmosphere; one that cannot be found anywhere else on the island. It is an elegant village facing the sea, designed as a tropical French Riviera and whereby villas and apartments blend harmoniously with a very pleasant lifestyle, niched in between the marketplace, the Beach Club, restaurants, shops and sports facilities. We have brought forth a way of life where it is possible to live, work, have fun and practice sports, while being gently rocked by the sound of the sea. We currently have an equal number of Mauritians and foreigners living at Azuri. This diversity sets us apart from what other service providers have to offer and creates a convivial mind-set. Azuri is a buzzing village all year round.
The Azuri site seems to stretch to the horizon. Is there more construction work in the pipeline?
Only 13% of the 220 hectares at our disposal have been developed so far. The first phase, comprising 106 residences for local citizens and 130 IRS residences for foreigners, is completed. Everything has been sold, which has allowed us to very quickly launch phase 2, with 114 additional units built and delivered as well as 2 new residential IRS villa programmes (Ocean River and Riviera) which are currently in progress. For this development programme, we shall be offering, among other things, 16 beachfront villas, which constitute a rare privilege in the real estate panorama. To date, all the local residences have been sold, and only a few Riviera villas are left. This success has encouraged us to develop new projects as from 2017.
Where does your foreign clientele come from?
A third of our clients are French, another third comes from South Africa, and the rest is divided between Europe, mainly Germany and England, and Africa, with countries like Kenya and Congo. Many of these people live at Azuri all year round, and there’s an increasing demand for longterm rentals. Those who choose to live at Azuri bring stability and create a beautiful atmosphere in the village.
Azuri has been built in the heart of nature, at a meeting point between forest, river and sea. Can we say that it is a sustainable development project?
The site has been built in full conformity with the surrounding environment. We make optimum use of natural resources available. Rainwater is collected for irrigation purposes, public lighting and water heaters are all powered by solar energy, and we are actively working on an overall waste sorting scheme for the entire village. We are continuously striving to reduce our ecological footprint and promote the natural assets of the site for our subsequent phases.
Once the construction is completed, will Azuri become the first Smart City of the island?
There’s no doubt that from the very beginning we’ve been smart. However, Azuri is not a Smart City. Let’s say rather that it’s an intelligent village! This real estate development project has been designed by urban planners and architects with the aim of creating a modern village. We favour the human aspect and proximity at the expense of an invasive technology.
The Master Plan for developing the whole site must be massive. What will Azuri look like in the coming years?
By 2020, 40% of the land should already be developed, with new residences, recreational and commercial facilities as well as coworking zones. We perpetually try to strike a balance in any development project that we undertake. Azuri is an exciting place to live, and our residents are active persons who like to work from home. We create a new way of living that stems from a sociological reflexion and an environmentfriendly urban planning. Our strength lies in our difference, in particular, this fantastic cultural diversity that has been existing since the very beginning. I am very optimistic about our ability to preserve the Mauritian touch of Azuri.