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The Ambience and Colours of Seychelles Captured at the Canopy Hilton Seychelles

Seychelles’ breathtaking and colourful landscapes are often immortalised on canvas by the stroke of artists’ brushes; very few can resist the beautiful natural mix of colours that shine brighter on a perfect sunny day. A few guesthouses and resorts in Seychelles choose as part of their décor paintings or features of local artists to add that touch of local flair and the rejuvenation experience inspired by the natural beauty of the Seychelle’s surrounding environment.

The newly opened Canopy by Hilton Seychelles, located in Anse La Mouche, Mahe’s southern region, stands out with its unique blend of local and contemporary art. The hotel lobby and reception areas are adorned with the expertise and artwork of local artists, curated by Michael Arnephie’s art gallery in collaboration with Gerhard Buckholz and Egbert Marday, Nigel Henri in collaboration with Alcide Libanotis, George Camille’s art gallery, and Ronald Scholastique. Their paintings and sculptures will impress visitors and give them a unique, memorable experience.

Nigel Henri, whose work is displayed in Hilton hotels across the Seychelles Islands, orchestrated this project on behalf of most of his fellow artists. The most significant part was painting on a tiles wall near the Sega bar, a pool bar at the resort. To do so, they had to consider the canopy concept common at all hotels under this brand.

“It was a tough job, as we had to get it right to avoid moving away from the original canopy concept. We also wanted to incorporate elements from the Seychelles environment, and thankfully, it was an accepted suggestion,” said Nigel.

Nigel shared that it was a new and challenging experience for them, as they were painting on tiles, a medium very different from canvas. “It took us over three months to meticulously prepare the tiles, apply a special primer, and get them ready for painting. Our dedication to this project was unwavering, and we are proud of the result.”

Alcide Libanotis worked side by side with Nigel on the tile wall painting, which was 15m by 5m: “We first worked on a maquette. We added our local flora and fauna and icons such as the Coco de Mer, tortoises, and birds of Seychelles. We then discussed and improved it with the canopy Hilton team working on the project. It was a good project, and I think it’s a nice piece of work.”

Well-known artists such as Michael Arnephie and Egbert Marday also worked on pieces of art found at the hotel.

“When my colleague artist Nigel Henri contacted me, I was happy to collaborate with him on the project; as an artist, I love and take pride in what I do, and I have never wished to be anything else than a great master of what I can produce artistically. The hotel, being an international chain, had its concept and guidelines, but Nigel ensured that we, as artists, could bring our own special touch to it,” said Micheal Arnephie.

The 120-guestroom hotel accommodation draws inspiration from its surroundings to offer an authentic guest experience from its stylish rooms, tranquil spas and world-class food and drinks offerings, making it a unique resort nestled in that small corner of paradise.

Uniqueness also lies in how it portrays the Creole way of life. Artist George Camille’s fifteen colourful acrylic paintings in the lobby and public areas are eye-catching and flawless in depicting our daily undertakings on our islands.
“The hotel interior designer approached me to bring the culture and colours of the island to the hotel,” said George Camille.

“Through my paintings, I’ve depicted scenes of the daily lives of Seychellois men and women in bright and bold colours against the breathtaking lush green canopy of the island’s vegetation and traditional architecture”, he said.

Those who attended the hotel’s opening event expressed their appreciation for the works of local artists, which bring some uniqueness and a sense of belonging to those wishing to blend more into Creole culture during their visits.

Nigel, who has just completed painting and decorating a towel kiosk with fellow artist Ronald Alexis at the Canopy by Hilton Seychelles resort, appreciates working with tourism establishments. He hopes that such collaborations between hotels and local artists will continue in the future for him and others, as they can all work together in partnership.

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