La Maison du Paradou

Near St Remy, Provence, France Book from Eur225

Reviewed by Tom Bell
A luxurious B&B with pretty gardens and pool, plus a self-catering house for 6 - don't miss the fantastic nearby bistro!
An incredible house in a tiny village close to Arles and St Remy de Provence. Owners Nick and Andrea renovated La Maison du Paradou from scratch, turning this old posting inn into a Provençal pleasure dome complete with lush garden, a swimming pool, a spectacular vaulted salon and fabulous rooms. It’s not cheap, but nor is anything you’ll find in it.

The 5 rooms (4 in the house, one in the garden) and self-catering house come fully equipped with an A-Z of luxury: the very best linen, ridiculously comfortable beds, music and movies stashed away on your TV’s computer, seriously swanky bathrooms and an eclectic collection of fabulous art (Nick’s father was a collector). Finally, food. Just 300m from the front door, you find Le Bistro du Paradou, one of France’s favourite restaurants. Terence Conran, Jean Reno and Nicolas Sarkozy all eat here. Delicious no-nonsense country food is served in relaxed style; wine is included, water is extra!

Highs

  • Nick and Andrea don’t cut corners and their renovated house stands in evidence
  • The huge vaulted salon is spectacular, one of the loveliest rooms we saw in Provence
  • Bedrooms are seriously good: beautiful fabrics, gorgeous art, excellent bathrooms
  • A lovely communal pool, and the self-catering house has a private one, too
  • The position: Arles, Nîmes, Pont du Gard, Uzès, Avignon and St Remy are all close

Lows

  • There’s no off-street parking, but the village is sleepy and you can leave your car outside
  • Breakfasts are taken at a big table, which won't be to everyone's taste
  • Self-catering La Maison Bleue's private pool is unheated

Best time to go

Tough the hotel is open all year round, the area is liveliest from Easter until late-October, during which time the immediate area has a varied calendar of concerts and festivals.

Our top tips

If visiting from July until September, don't miss Arles' excellent summer photography exhibition (which is scattered around all over town in fantastic locations).

Great for...

Family
Honeymoon
  • = Recommended
  • = Best in region
  • = World favourite
  • Boutique B&B
  • 5 rooms + 1 self-catering house
  • Breakfast (+ other meals on request)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Daily Maid Service
  • Towels & Bedlinen
Room:

Rooms

Take it as read that the 5 guest rooms come with the best beds, beautiful linen, fabulous fabrics and wonderful bathrooms (fancy robes, fluffy towels, lotions and potions galore). None are huge, all are well-sized. Four are in the main house, Le Jardin Secret is in the garden. You’ll find jugs of iced water, flatscreen TVs and myriad movies on offer, even colour-coordinated chocolates. Head off to dinner, then return to find your bed turned down. Shuttered windows keep you cool by day and night.

Fuchsia blushes in bubblegum colours and has French windows that open onto balustrading. Violette comes in green and lilac, and has an enormous bathroom with a cavernous shower and a separate bath. Citrine has the loveliest art (which is saying something, as the house could double as an art gallery). Emeraude is probably the biggest room and overlooks the garden; it has a very smart bathroom, too. Le Jardin Secret is a palette of orange and yellow and has a semi-private terrace.

Though we haven’t seen it yet, self-catering La Maison Bleue sounds great for families, with a private garden and pool, plus 3 ensuite bedrooms and an open-plan living area with fully fitted kitchen.

Features include:

  • Air conditioning
  • Cd player
  • Central heating
  • Coffee tea making
  • Cots Available
  • Dvd player
  • Extra beds
  • Fireplace
  • Internet access
  • Internet access
  • Phone
  • Radio
  • Safe box
  • Terrace
  • Tv
  • WiFi
  • Wifi internet

Eating

Help yourself to the usual breakfast excesses on the shaded terrace: pastries and baguettes, fruit, yoghurt, jugs of grapefruit and orange juice (not freshly squeezed); hot drinks in pretty pots, and eggs to order. If the weather is poor, you eat in the salon, an extremely beautiful room so you may wish for rain.

Light lunches are available if you order at breakfast - quiches, salads, sandwiches, that sort of thing. Communal dinners are offered intermittently during high season, perhaps Mediterranean prawns, Provençal lamb, a plate of cheese, then tarte tatin (menus are discussed in advance).

The best place to eat in the village (one is tempted to say in Provence) is Le Bistro du Paradou. It’s French to the core, with a fabulous no-choice menu - foie gras accompanied by a gMuscat de Beaumes-de-Venise, roast chicken with Dauphinoise potatoes, a cheese board plonked down on your table, an excellent raspberry tart. Wine is included (though you pay for water!). Book ahead or be disappointed.

If you want to eat in a double-Michelin starred restaurant drive 5 minutes up the hill to Oustau de Baumanière in Les-Baux-de-Provence; for one star, try sister eatery Le Cabro d’Or, also in Les Baux.

If you're self-catering in La Maison Bleue, there's a butcher, baker and general convenience store in the village, and a supermarket a 10-minute drive away. There are also daily markets in the local villages for regional specialties.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Children meals
  • Coffee tea making
  • Communal dining
  • Dinner by arrangement
  • Lunch by arrangement
  • Restaurants nearby
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • The Alpilles Hills rise around you - Van Gogh painted his olive trees here and you can walk, cycle or ride through them. They stretch up to St Remy, where Nostradamus is buried and Van Gogh used to be a patient in the asylum. Its Wednesday market is excellent
  • Spend a day in magnificent Arles, for more Van Gogh (he lived here for a while), for the Roman amphitheatre, and for its Saturday market
  • Head south to explore the Carmargue, with its lagoons, black bulls, white horses and flamingos
  • Potter around Nîmes and visit its Roman amphitheatre, the best-preserved in Europe
  • Also worth visiting are Uzès, (one of the finest Medieval towns in France, with an excellent Saturday market), the famous Pont du Gard, and Avignon, for its Papal Palace and famous bridge
  • In good weather, relax in the hotel's garden, with a shaded terrace, a boules pitch and poolside sun loungers to help you tan
  • In bad weather, the vaulted salon (one of the loveliest rooms we saw in Provence) has a grand piano, 2 open-plan sitting areas (watch out for the poker chips) and an enormous bookshelf, which is occasionally lost behind a giant cinema screen

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Birdwatching
  • Cycling
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Museums / galleries
  • Shopping / markets
  • Well being

Kids

Children are welcome and Nick and Andrea are wonderful hosts, able to advise on activities nearby and provide any amenities requested. We think La Maison du Paradou works best for smaller kids, teenagers would probably find the area a little uneventful.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

All rooms can hold a baby cot; Citrine, Emeraude and Le Jardin Secret can hold an extra bed instead. Le Jardin Secret particularly good for smaller children as it is set away from the other rooms, is closest to the pool and has its own terrace.

Self-catering La Maison Bleue has 3 ensuite bedrooms, a patio for alfresco meals, a washer-dryer, and its own garden with private pool. Being next door to the hotel may mean a little less privacy, but guests benefit from the services, such as midweek cleaning and concierge.

Babysitting:

Babysitting available by arrangement

Baby listening:

If you bring your own monitor then Nick and Andrea are happy to babysit

Baby equipment:

Baby cots available on request

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Children's meals:

There are a great range of food shops in the village, just a couple of minutes' walk away, and also in the nearby villages. For a bigger supermarket head to St Remy, which is 8km away. Family-friendly cutlery and crockery and high chairs are available. La Maison Bleue has a well-equipped kitchen.

Kids Activities on site:

  • Pool
  • Boules
  • Table tennis
  • Cinema screen
  • Books, toys, games
  • Satellite multi-channel TV

Kids Activities nearby:

  • Kayaking
  • Hiking
  • Beaches (40 minutes drive)
  • Tennis court in the village

Families Should Know:

Pools are unfenced but have pool alarms

Distances:

  • Airport: 30 minutes (Nimes)
  • Doctor: 1 minute walk
  • Shops: 1 minute walk
Kid Friendly: La Maison Bleue

Our guests' ratings...

9/
Rooms
9/
Food
10/
Service
9/
Value
9/
Overall

{{ review.firstName }}{{ review.countryName ? ', '+ review.countryName : '' }},
Feedback is only from guests who have booked and stayed through i-escape

Rates for La Maison du Paradou