“A luxurious B&B with pretty gardens and pool, plus a self-catering house for 6 - don't miss the fantastic nearby bistro!”
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.
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.
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.
Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)
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 available by arrangement
If you bring your own monitor then Nick and Andrea are happy to babysit
Baby cots available on request
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
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.
Pools are unfenced but have pool alarms