This newest Six Senses resort wowed us with its sophisticated design and relaxed atmosphere, with the fantastic cuisine, and the natural splendour of Félicité Island, of which Zil Pasyon is the sole occupant. As private island resorts go, this one steals the podium for the sheer beauty of the experience.
We wouldn’t exactly say that the main reason behind our latest Seychelles trip was just to check out the newly opened Six Senses Zil Pasyon—but we are not going to deny it either.
Of course, this was not the only place we saw in the Seychelles. We stayed at several resorts, toured a few islands. We swam, sailed and sunbathed. We ate well and slept soundly. Overall, had a blast. But it’s the memory of our time at the Six Senses Zil Pasyon we cherish the most.
Félicité, where the resort is located, is the 5th largest island in the archipelago. It’s spectacular.
The 652-acre land comprises mountains of granite boulders that tumble down to the emerald sea, creating truly dramatic seascapes. The rugged shore occasionally opens up to reveal white-sand beaches. A thick jungle fills every space that is not a bare rock.
There is a lot of pure natural beauty here.
For the resort’s architects and designers, headed by Richard Hywel Evans of Studio RHE Architecture & Design, the scenery was the obvious starting point. Thus, many distinctive rock formations and other natural features were integrated as part of the design.
For example, our Pasyon Pool Villa (# 50) benefitted from an outdoor shower set into a massive boulder, a surprise secret reading spot (a hammock under an ancient tree) and an exclusive access to a huge rock outcrop rising dozens of meters above the surrounding area. Its blackened granite peak was the perfect spot for a champagne picnic.
The huge granite formations will also define the resort’s Spa experience. Although the main building was still under construction at the time of our stay, the treatment pavilions were already ensured to become the resort’s star attraction. Perfectly positioned to make the best of the ocean view and the spectacular surroundings, they are actually built into, on and among the rock outcrops.
Fusing contemporary architecture with local geography—rather than competing with it—fits well into the Six Senses “self-sustainability” principle and its concept of an “integrated village”.
That said, at Zil Pasyon the designers evolved the brand guidebook: the place feels more grown-up than the other Six Senses resorts we’ve been to. Nowhere to be found here is the rough Zighy Bay aesthetic or the barefoot Laamu style. Gone is the rustic Yao Noi or Ninh Van Bay vibe.
Instead, the light-filled structures of the Six Senses Zil Pasyon are infused with a chic, seamless style, in which neat furnishing and meticulous attention to detail are balanced by plenty of Seychellois references.
The design comes across as simultaneously simple and sophisticated. And it still feels fundamentally “Six Senses”, even in the polished, high-tech guest villas. These sprawling tropical dwellings harmoniously blend outdoor and indoor living. Their four-poster beds are fantastically comfortable, and the infinity pools heavenly, with a day bed nearby and an outside dining area.
Having breakfasts here was great—we swear they taste better when enjoyed in the privacy of the villa’s terrace, with the beautiful view.
The Wow Factor
Speaking of which—something that could fill a whole review on its own is the food. Amazing doesn’t cover it. From incredible breakfasts to sublime dinners, the chef Richard Lee and his team turn the insular produce and Creole flavours into magical creations.
There is but a handful of places to dine and drink here, and they are all located in the vicinity of the main swimming pool. The open-air restaurants have a relaxed mood and the service is flawless. For the drinks, the small hammocks in the Koko Bar were our default spot to sip one or two, while the over-water nets were perfect for sundowners. (If you are looking for an extra spectacular sunset spot, ask for a champagne set up on top of the island—we loved it.)
In the Name
Even before our time at the resort was over, we already longed for the opportunity to visit Six Senses Zil Pasyon again. But the departure was inevitable. After saying goodbyes, we climbed into a shiny ZilAir helicopter and as it was taking off, we wondered: is there a simple way to summarise all our experiences at Six Senses?
Then we remembered the island’s name: Felicity. Happiness. That’s about right.