The Champ de Mars Racecourse is a thoroughbred horse track in Port Louis, Mauritius. The Racecourse was inaugurated on 25 June 1812 by The Mauritius Turf Club which was founded earlier in the same year by Sir Robert Townsend Farquhar, the first British Governor of Mauritius. The Mauritius Turf Club is the oldest horse-racing club in the Southern Hemisphere and the second oldest in the world. The race track follows a very selective right hand oval path and is relatively small in size, with a circumference of 1,298 meters and width between 12 and 14 meters. The home-straight extends uphill and is 225 meters long. When Mauritius gained independence on 12 March 1968, the event including the flag hoisting ceremony was held here. Since then and for many years, the racecourse has seen the annual celebration of the accession to independence.
Today, the Champ de Mars attracts tens of thousands of people on each racing day during the racing season from late March to early December and has become the ultimate meeting place for racing fanatics from all over the island and abroad. The track has also played a fundamental role in propelling horse racing as the most popular sport and form of entertainment among the local population.
The Crown Lodge was launched in May 2002. It is a private steward suite converted to allow tourists from around the world to discover, in optimum conditions of comfort and safety the electric atmosphere of horse racing at the Champ de Mars. The Crown Lodge is located on the VIP balcony, a strategic position which allows an unobstructed view of the finish line and the paddock. It also affords the opportunity to meet local trainers, owners and jockeys visiting the Crown Lodge and the opportunity to indulge in free champagne and canapés. eNL’s Managing Director Rebecca Smith and family were lucky enough to be invited to The Crown Lodge as the guests of Tim Watts, Pertemps Network Group Chairman.
Rebecca commented “it is one of the best entertaining places in Mauritius. The Crown Lodge is a relaxing spot which gradually comes to life until the atmosphere is electric. My family had a truly wonderful time, a magical experience that will never be forgotten, especially my granddaughters, who I have to say are experts at putting on a winning bet.”