Mauritius. Home of the legendary Dodo, turquoise seas, and verdant hills. An air of quiet mystery surrounds this island in the middle of the Indian Ocean. With its beaches, lagoons, and reefs, exotic flora and fauna, you’d be forgiven for thinking you had landed in Paradise.

They say money can’t buy happiness, but it can buy you the closest thing to it; a property on this wondrous island.  2014 saw the first foray into luxury property development by French team Groupe MJ Développement, a passion project founded in 2007 by friends Michaël Ruel and Jean Etchepareborde.

With over 20 years’ experience in real estate and hotel operation – plus a deep love for Mauritius – the success they have enjoyed from their first development, Marguery Exclusive Villas, was near enough assured. Seeing the response to these 40 luxury villas and club house in Rivière Noire, 2019 sees the opening of their latest project which began in 2017, Legend Hill.

Working alongside Pierre-Yves Serret of Architects Studio, and designers Jean-Michel and Sophie Remazeilles, Groupe MJ Développement has ensured an even greater level of luxury. With panoramic sea views Legend Hill is nestled into the majestic La Tourelle mountain. Set within a secure 5-star resort, 52 residences [23 villas, 25 apartments, 4 penthouses] enjoy a private club house, 24/7 concierge, and gourmet restaurant headed up by Michelin-starred chef Arnaud Faye. There is also a stunning bistro restaurant by the private pool, a cocktail bar, Salin de Biosel spa, and fitness club. Why would you ever leave?

As ambassadors of excellence, the quality of the build has been outstanding, each building working in harmony with the natural environment. Hugely prestigious, the living accommodations are finished to perfection and are the epitome of exotic chic; as they say, the sea is your horizon and the sun, your companion.

Exuberant vegetation surrounds each property, providing additional privacy and heightened sense of opulence, all enjoyed from the large balconies. That sense of being at one with your surroundings is taken seriously here, especially when you can enjoy a private pool on the roof of one of the penthouses while looking out at the lagoon.

Evenings can be spent enjoying the cooling sea breeze from the terrace of Le 1812, a concept gourmet restaurant by Head Chef Arnaud Faye (of Chevré D’Or restaurant fame.) Inventive and unforgettable, the food here is as exquisite as the view. If, however, you want a more casual dining experience, then this is provided by B View, a pool-side bistro suspended over the ocean, following a trip to the Santosha cocktail bar of course.

Luxury living would not be complete without a spa, and the Salin de Biosel provides the perfect way to unwind to fully enjoy your paradisic surroundings; utilising a fusion of Oriental energetic pharmacopeia and modern Western phytotherapy, they redefine the rules of beauty and harmony. Not a bad way to start the day.

Alongside the Marguery Villas released in 2014, this December sees the completion of their second project, Mythic Grand Gaube, a collection of stunning villas facing the Northern Islets, near the urban Grand Baie. The living spaces are designed to be tropical gardens, intimate and prestigious. At 500m from the beach, this fully closed and secured resort also provides owners with the rental opportunities for when they are not in residence.

On its most simple level, you would be investing in a property. Groupe MJ Développement, however, want you to view it as investing in a lifestyle. Their history of bringing to market high-end, luxury properties should set the mind of any investor at ease, which can be seen in their early developments around Île de France, Aquitaine, and the Côte d’Azur. To ensure excellence and sustainable development at every level, the Groupe are present and in charge of every single process. Infrastructure aside, the lifestyle and activities of the resort fall under the auspices of Thierry Naidu; a Mauritian by birth and supervising La Chèvre d’Or (under whom the restaurant received its second Michelin star), Naidu is also the CEO of the Group Phoenix Hotel Collection overseeing some of the world’s most luxurious properties.