Archive for the ‘Hotels & Chateaux’ Category
Allow us to recommend a memorable stay at the tasteful 5-star Hostellerie de Levernois in the heart of the Côte de Beaune. An esteemed member of the Relais & Chateaux, the hotel is situated on the edge of a golf course in an 11-acre park that offers a seemingly endless air of tranquility.
The intimate estate includes several room and suite selections and exceptional dining to make the hostellerie the ideal base for exploring the wine country of Burgundy. Indulge in a charming lunch at the Bistrot du Bord de l’Eau on the river, before exploring area vineyards and tasting rooms – bicycles are available for your use. And at the end of the day, a glass of wine on your private terrace is essential to be beginning of a pleasant evening. Read more
Of course we would love to be in France right now, but why not look forward, dream a little, imagine an over-the-top stay along the Riviera. Grand idea – let’s take a look at two very charming Cote d’Azur hotels and the “stars” associated with them. The 3-star Belle Époque style residence, Le Petit Palais in Nice is a smaller, elegant residence located in the heart of Cimiez. The 5-star Grand Hôtel Cap Ferrat is all one would expect of a luxury hotel by the Mediterranean. Read more
Though stained with the blood, burial grounds and memorials to lost young soldiers; the vast Normandy landscape tells multiple stories. We feel the weight and sad wonder of history, struggle and loss; yet this magnificent land unfolds in soft, rolling farms and golden hay fields that embrace an existence made possible by that very history. Read more
Words and music for “I Went to a Marvelous Party” were written by Noël Coward in 1938. The song offered a first-person exposé of five parties the playwright-composer-singer attended on the French Riviera in the frantic era of amusement of the Train Bleu society of the 1920s and 1930s. While that particular vignette sparks your curiosity, you need only drive along the jeweled coastline of the Cote d’Azur to imagine the haute lifestyle of that era.
These touches of history merely pave the way to introduce an enchanting hotel on the Mediterranean near Saint-Raphael. No less than renowned author Somerset Maugham initiated the incubator for the hotel, when he purchased the 9-acre estate of Villa Mauresque. Prior to transforming to today’s elegant hotel residence, the villa hosted great literary and society guests in one of the Riviera’s most tantalizing social salons and was Maugham’s secluded home, until his death in 1965.
Around 2005, discretion and good taste led the way in converting the Moorish-inspired mansion into an extremely welcoming hotel. The walled property keeps the world at bay, while you take breakfast on the terrace at the edge of the Mediterranean. Or from your private port, you might tackle windsurfing or a quieter canoe ride.
The Villa was designed by Chapoulard in 1860, one of many of his neo-Moorish imprints along the fabled coast. The boutique hotel has been carefully curated to offset serene ivory walls with bold tapestries and painted doors; and only 11 luxurious suites and bedrooms welcome guests to refined comfort. Two on-site small villas also are a part of the property, available for rental and even engaging a chef-prepared meal en suite.
Speaking of dining, a Michelin-star Chef provides inviting cuisine in “Le Bougainvillier” restaurant with elegant indoor or terrace dining with unparalleled views of the Gulf of Saint Tropez. Atypical of many Riviera resorts, the restaurant open throughout the year to offer … fillet of John Dory from our sea, roasted green asparagus in Provencal style or perhaps roasted lamb chops from the Quercy region
Enough. You must browse the Villa’s site for more information to choose from artist- and writer-named rooms and suites that range from Monet’s 225-Euro room to Baudelaire’s Suite Prestige with sea view at 1,300 Euros per night.
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For a royal experience, one might expect a royal price tag; and Hotel Du Cap-Eden-Roc does not disappoint in either category. A luxurious and lavish resort delightfully positioned on the tip of Cap d’Antibes, the hotel has long been the chosen mecca for celebrities and privileged guests through the ages. No doubt they have left a trail of interesting tales in their wake.
Words simply cannot capture the legendary hotel. From 1870, the “Villa Soleil” welcomed writers looking for inspiration, but in 1885 a Piedmontese hotelier set his vision in motion and transformed the Napoleon III-style villa into the unparalleled Hôtel du Cap. One of the most interesting hotel embellishments is the seawater swimming pool carved into the rock, though the seaside “cabins” (33 cabanas, in all) and Eden-Roc Pavilion are equally alluring.
Now celebrating its 100th Anniversary, the hotel was recently refreshed with a €45million refurbishment that preserved and enhanced the resort’s stunning, authentic quality; while adding every contemporary convenience and several new amenities. Imagine refined, spacious rooms and luxury appointments, the sumptuous Bellini Bar, gourmet restaurant and assorted intimate bars and grills. There’s even a fresh Juice and Ice Cream Bar in the shade of the Alep pines – parfait for the children!
Open only from mid-April to mid-October, the five-star hotel rates are equally ‘handsome’ for accommodations ranging from standard, classique and Supérieure rooms to a private villa complete with your own butler. Gala events planned for the celebratory year include a magnificent gourmet evening with some of the world’s best sommeliers and Michelin-starred chefs.
But I have a humorous twist to this story. The postcard shown was sent to my father in Paris from a lady friend staying at the hotel in 1932. In part, her message reads, “Here I am at this wonderful place – $6.00 a day for room, bath and meals (in between seasons) … You ought to see the scanty one-piece bathing suits. Oh, I don’t know where I’ll end – the temptations are lovely and many.”
The prices surely have changed, but I rather imagine the temptations to still be … lovely and many.