The Nautica Commercial Centre, located in south La Preneuse, right opposite of Ruisseau Créole, is the latest addition of commercial properties in Black River.
Proudly marketing itself as the first ‘green’ commercial centre in Mauritius, Nautica and Sasema Property Services set the aim high right from the start.
With an open design, created to maximize the use of daylight, while allowing for cross ventilated areas and rainwater collection – one cannot blame the architects for not trying.
Add to this a green roof to cool the building in order to reduce energy costs, mineral paints without volatile organic compounds, along with recycling and biodisc sewerage treatment and one can assume that Nautica and the Sasema Group feel safe in using the term ‘eco friendly’ to describe their concept.
The bold but stylish marine inspired architecture, with its trigonometric influences create a fresh addition to the square structures found opposite of the entrance and across Royal Road at Ruisseau Créole.
Located in a prime location in La Preneuse, with plenty of covered parking space, easily accessed from both residential La Preneuse and the main Royal Road, the commercial centre with thousands of square metres floor space should really be an instant success.
However, from the “office space available” signs, we can tell that the management is, if not struggling, at least not swamped with requests. One year after opening, half of the floor space seem to be empty, and the Celsius Restaurant and Bar at the ground level look eerily deserted even during high season.
This is too bad, since both the area and the commercial centre itself have a lot going for it. Perhaps the rising property prices in La Preneuse scare some businesses off, or perhaps the market is simply saturated with commercial centres.
Less than 10 years ago, there were hardly any commercial centres in all of Black River.
At first glance, the businesses located in Nautica seem to cater to the the more upmarket residential crowd, and you will find both a private medical center, a swimming pool store and a shop selling designer furniture.
British banking giant Barclays Bank also setup shop not long ago, moving their Tamarin branch from the old Barachois Commerical Centre.
From a tourist’s perspective, the Nautica Commercial Centre has fairly little of interest, apart from perhaps a quiet afternoon coffee or the convenient access to the Barclay ATM (sporting the highest withdrawal limit in La Preneuse at Rs 40,000).
The centre is still worth a visit though, to have a look at some quite interesting and different architecture, and the building also boasts a very good, guarded and covered parking area at lower ground level – completely free of charge.
From Nautica, it is also very easy to access the rivalling commercial centre Ruisseau Créole on the other side of the main road.