The Côte d’Azur, aka The French Riviera, refers to a stretch of captivating Mediterranean coastline found in the southeast corner of France. Famed for its late-night partying, luxury yachts, designer boutiques, golden beaches, glitzy restaurants and fine wines, there are few places that command the attention of the rich and famous in quite the same way. It’s also a hugely historically and culturally significant place, with medieval villages and old fishing harbours that have served as the setting for classic French films like Bonjour Tristesse.
To enjoy a taste of the luxurious Riviera lifestyle, we’ve found some of the most striking stays for your next getaway.
Dine out on the terrace for classic Côte d’Azur views
Hotel Provençal has been a family-run business for four generations, so the staff knows how to cater to the needs of many. Located in the French and Niçoise fishing village of Villefranche-sur-Mer, the hotel has large bedrooms that are adorned with dark stained oak furniture and views of a piercing-blue bay. From the sun terrace, guests can sit beside the hotel's pale green shutters amid the scent of pine needles, enjoying a drink while the Mediterranean laps the rocks below. Visit the shaded gardens of the Citadelle Saint-Elme (the town's 16th-century fortress) or spend the day balancing on a stand-up paddleboard at the Plage de Passable in nearby town, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat. Or if you’re looking for a road trip adventure, take the 2-hour drive up to Monaco, where you'll be following the same winding roads of The Monaco Grand Prix.
Hôtel Les Roches Blanches
The likes of Winston Churchill and Edith Piaf have visited this hotel
Right on the edge of a limestone cliff and 1km from the city centre of Cassis, you’ll find Hôtel Les Roches Blanches. Over the years, the hotel has seen influential visitors such as Winston Churchill and Edith Piaf, and is now a popular spot for those seeking a romantic rendezvous as it’s set back somewhat from the coast's cities. While away the day playing a game of pétanque (also known as boules), followed by hours in the black mosaic infinity pool soaking up the view of Cassis harbour adrift with yachts, and the cliffs of Cap Canaille in the distance.
Tiara Miramar Beach Hotel & Spa
After a night out in Cannes, the best place to end up is by the luxurious pool
The coastal city of Cannes is famed for attracting A-listers and hosting festivals including the renowned International Film Festival and creative advertising festival, Cannes Lions – to name a few. For those head over heels with the lavish Riviera lifestyle, stay at Tiara Miramar Beach Hotel & Spa. The rooms are decorated with refined furniture that is made to feel even more luxurious alongside views of the Mediterranean. Spend the day lounging by the pool, on the hotel’s discreet, private beach or by indulging at the 5-star rejuvenating spa.
Radisson Blu Hotel Nice
The rooftop terrace is the go-to spot here
Located on the Nice's Promenade des Anglais, just outside the city centre, is Radisson Blu Hotel Nice. It’s a destination for the traveller who values luxury but not at the expense of the community or the environment. A fifth of the hotel's electricity comes from renewable sources, and environmentally friendly practices are in place to reduce and reuse day-to-day waste. The hotel also hosts annual events to raise money for the World Childhood Foundation. So, when you arrive, head to the rooftop terrace and bathe under the gentle afternoon sun while gazing over the Baie des Anges, where sailboats take part in Nice's traditional regatta and large luxury liners cruise along the horizon.
Villa La Panoramique
Expect panoramic views at this hillside villa
Situated in the village of Fitou in Languedoc Roussillon, beside the blue, velvety waters of the Mediterranean sea, you’ll find Villa La Panoramique. This modern, two-storey villa has four bedrooms that can accommodate up to eight people, making it a great getaway for a large family or a group of friends. Spend the day gallivanting around the village sampling local wines, which are among some of the south of France's finest; although this is the country's largest wine-producing region, it has managed to retain its charm, with numerous tasting experiences within historic wine caves. You can also explore by taking the 10-minute drive down to the long, sandy beaches of Leucate or La Franqui and try your hand at kitesurfing, which lures water sports enthusiasts from all over the world.