The Russians are Coming! Adieu Coral Strand?

Actually, the Russians have been here in full force for some time, but it's only now that their workings have started to affect us. They bought over the Coral Strand some time ago and have been giving locals the evil eye. Now they are closing the hotel for two months for renovations and I fear we may be discouraged from visiting when they reopen.

The Coral Strand has been THE meeting point for Seychellois and expats since it opened 30 years ago. Many a wet hour has been spent downing Seybrews at the pool bar. I've been coming back and forth to the Seychelles for many years and the one constant has been that there is always some bloke with his guitar singing "Mrs. Robinson" every Sunday evening for Happy Hour. Okay, the prices aren't happy, but the mood always is.

Both my kids learnt to swim in the pool and I've spent many afternoons lounging in one of the beach chairs pretending I was on holiday or chatting with other locals. The times of dancing the night away in the Takamaka Room are long gone, but it's still the most fun and sociable place to be on the island.

Where, all of us locals are asking, are we going to spend the next two months? And are we going to be "allowed" back? People are being pessimistic, but I say, we need to claim our rights. The Coral Strand is a Seychellois institution and we won't move!

Do svidaniya!


  1. I hope I will be able to go to Seychelles for a visit someday.

  2. Jesie, I see you travel a lot, so maybe you will land up here some day. If you do, make sure to get in touch beforehand. :-)

  3. I love your blog and hope to come live there as well. But I'm curious, how are the Russians now? Did they flood into the Seychelles? Do they get along with the locals? Or do they look down on the locals?

    I lived in a small island where the Russians brought in many Eastern European prostitutes and then behaved like the mafia. I had to leave then.


  4. Thank you!

    We aren't flooded by Russians yet. There are some and they are Mafia. These guys who have bought the hotel are owners of a "chocolate factory", haha. It seems they tried settling in Kenya first, but Kenya wouldn't have them... They are pretty arrogant and don't mix with the locals at all. I've heard some rumours about a few professional ladies being on the island, but I understand it was temporary.

    It's annoying about a lot of the prime land being bought up (not just by the Russians), but I don't think they'll take over the whole island. In the long run, they'll just be absorbed "into the land" like everyone and everything else.

    Come and have a look-see first and then decide. :-)

  5. Thank for the reply. I was really worried about the Russians. It was horrible where I lived before. They muscled in (like the wild west), brought in the women and ruined everything.

    I will come and take a look!

  6. Quite a while back, I was reading something about a Russian billionaire who was a fugitive in his country so he decided to settle in Seychelles. At first, I thought it was a joke, and then a friend of mine told me that he bought part of the land that's used during the Regatta. Does he have anything to do with Coral Strand? LOL. OMG I can't believe they sold Coral Strand to foreigners...I spent a lot of my childhood weekends in the pool...

  7. Rawpinions,

    It's the same guy. Actually, a bunch of them. Some have moved here and some are still in Russia. I understand they are arguing about how to proceed and the money that's supposed to be coming from the guys in Russia isn't currently forthcoming. People who have dirty money have a way of fighting amongst themselves...

    They have practically bought the whole of Beau Vallon. I've heard they bought Oliaji's land on the other side of the Coral Strand and are negotiating with the Lefevres. So, if they don't already, they will own the whole strip from beyond the Coral Strand to the Al Mare.

    According to STB, the government has told them that the promenade has to stay for Bazar Labrin, Regatta, etc. Let's wait and see...

  8. Hey Louise,

    What transpired with the hotel and the Russians?


  9. Hi people,
    Nova days there lots of Russians on the island Mahe, Seychelles BUT there are also lots of ARABS - they also buying the HOT spots in the Island, so what do you have to say about them? Always in their groups, fancy cars, showing off or anythings? But still quiette for the moment.

    I love Seychelles, i love the locals, i love nation, i love the mixure of cultures there, so let's just respect the place we are living in for a life or just for holidays. Lets respect locals, law and the way of their living!
    Peace people!
    Love Life - she ll love you back!!!

  10. Actually, i worked for the insurance branch of the russian holding that bought that hotel. The people on top could be like you describe up here and i'm sorry for you. The funny thing is they are offering a 20% discount to all russians wanting to book a room.



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