“A small, stylish, seafront hotel on the Cotentin peninsula, with a soothing designer touch and an exceptional restaurant”
It was a Brazilian-Portuguese couple who transformed the hotel, back in 2004, into this haven of neat designer chic. Twelve bedrooms - 9 in the hotel, 3 in a separate cottage called Le Rivage - are decorated in calming nautical blues and whites with seagrass carpets. Bathrooms are pristine white, with storm-coloured slate tiles. The garden behind, where you dine and breakfast in summer, is a delight. And, in 2016, a new French owner added a dash of Gallic style to the restaurant; we haven't visited since her arrival, but the menu is already making our mouths water. The hotel's ace card is its location: a marina in front, a granite village behind, and endless sandy beaches if you walk north around the Cap. A perfect, romantic, gourmet escape.
- Location, location, location: vast sandy beaches only 5 minutes' drive in either direction, and getting here from the UK is a doddle
- The décor: a rare dose of designer calm in a land of chintzy wallpapers
- Courteous, helpful staff
- Amazing fruits de mer (seafood) and plenty of places to sample it, including the hotel's own restaurant and a Michelin-starred one 5 minutes away
- Historical must-sees like Mont St-Michel and the D-Day landing beaches are within 1½ hours' drive
- Rooms in the main house are on the small side, and lie off narrow corridors which can be noisy
- We had one comment that breakfast was disappointing, but Marine is now busy improving the spread and the service
- Some find the hotel's designer image a bit self-conscious - piles of interior decoration mags are studiously left around everywhere
- The hotel is not really suitable for children, unless they are very well behaved
Best time to go
Our top tips
The village of Barneville, with which Carteret is linked, has a small but lively market on Saturday mornings.
Barneville-Carteret and Dielette, are departure points for the islands of Jersey, Guernsey and Alderney (April - end September).”
- Boutique Hotel
- Restaurant + bar
- All ages welcome
- Open all year
- Spa Treatments
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Beach Nearby
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
If you’re a fan of Flamant or Blanc d’Ivoire fabrics and furnishings, you’ll love the hotel’s 12 rooms, each of which has its own décoration personnalisée. White painted wood abounds, furnishings and paints are in soothing natural tones like baby blue, beige and slate grey, and curtains are in luxurious linen. Corridors in the main building are painted in one of Flamant’s most successful tones, a dark green/brown bizarrely called ‘Potato’. The overall atmosphere is one of unashamed romantic perfection, with not a hair out of place.
Our favourite rooms are those in the cottage, named Le Rivage after the nearest harbour. They’re decorated in nautical baby blues and white, with gorgeous views onto the marina. Bathrooms here are particularly luxurious, with huge old-fashioned showerheads, and attractive natural slate tiling.
The Garden Side Rooms have pleasant views over the pretty landscaped gardens, though these rooms tend to be smaller. We also like the Marina View Rooms under the eaves, which offer great views and a cosy atmosphere.
- Central heating
- Cots Available
- Extra beds
- Safe box
When we visited, we found the food good and fresh, but not cheap. Culinary highlights are, not surprisingly, seafood and fish, although the hotel is famed also for its foie gras and Cotentin lamb.
At dinner time, the restaurant turns stylishly white, lit by candles, which makes it popular with couples. Standout dishes - all attractively presented on white porcelain - include the homard p'tit bleu (half lobster) and the filets de rouget (red mullet, catch permitting). The caramelised apple tarte dusted with cinnamon is a perfect end to the evening. A lighter (and cheaper) menu is available at lunch, and in summer you can eat al fresco in the garden.
Breakfasts, served at pretty linen-clad tables in the bright restaurant, include fresh fruit salad, organic local yogurts, eggs to order, perhaps some confiture de lait, caramelised apples or Jersey black butter.
- Restaurants nearby
- Vegetarian menu
- Swimming on Carteret’s deserted beach, Plage de la Vieille Eglise, or on the more populated, but stunning, sandy beach of Barneville plage. The latter also offers char a voile (kite-buggies) if you want an adrenalin rush
- There are some great weekly markets, notably at Bricquebec (Mondays), which takes over the town’s stone streets and the Place Ste-Anne; and in the picturesque fishing village of Portbail (Tuesdays). It’s worth lingering in both to absorb a bit of history: seek out Bricquebec’s medieval castle (now a hotel) and ramparts, and Portbail's lovely 11th-century church and 4th-century Gallo-Roman baptistery
- For religious architecture, start with the superb Romanesque church at Barneville, then visit the stunningly restored Norman Romanesque abbey of Lessay, half an hour’s drive south. Lessay means ‘standing on the waters’, as the land here was once just a swamp, occupied only by the isolated Abbatiale de la Sainte-Trinité
- Continue south (beyond Lessay) to Pirou and Gratot, fairy-tale castles which have remained remarkably unchanged since the Middle Ages; both have recently been rescued from near ruin
- There’s lots more to see and do in Normandy. For some more of our recommendations, see our destination guide
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Shopping / markets
The hotel isn't really geared towards kids, with the emphasis on quiet relaxation. That said, children of all ages are welcome.
Family friendly accommodation:
Cots Available, Extra Beds Available
Baby cots available on request
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking