“Intimate elegance at this peaceful, romantic retreat in the Mougins hills above super-cool Cannes”
Peaceful Suite St Honorat on the ground floor, has French windows in the sitting room opening onto the garden. The antique panels in the bedroom have been lime-washed first in black, then in white, then orange, finally in grey; different colours surface depending on the light, and when the sun sets olive tree silhouettes dance on the walls. Its bath is so big they had to knock down the wall to get it in!
Romantic Suite Isadora is on the first floor and has a big fat ancient beam bisecting the ceiling of the room. It also has a rather large and expensive bed covered in a thick Provencal quilt. The sitting room is wrapped in curving glass - it is one of the loveliest rooms in the house.
Technically speaking, Suite Serguey is not a suite, but in our opinion it is the best room. It’s up on the top floor, airy, light-filled and has a stone fireplace in one corner. You spark it up, stick on some music, then swing next door, pour a deep bath and watch the flames through a pane of glass. Its roof was made for stargazing, too.
The fourth suite, Suite St Marguerite, is on the ground floor with direct access to a leafy garden (small private terrace), and is particularly suited to a couple with 1 child. Its walls are distress-painted with natural pigments in rich gold and green.
If you come in summer, you can stay in a refurbished gypsy caravan, named Suite Gypsy, parked out in the gardens, a charmingly quirky option, with its spacious wood-lined interiors (double/twin room, sitting area, bathroom with big tub) and its flower-ringed wooden deck outside.
All have large double/kingsize or twin beds, grand bathrooms with inviting tubs or powerful rainfall showers, CD players, air con/heating and a minibar.
Sublime food throughout the day flows from the kitchen. Breakfast (extra cost for all rooms except Gypsy) is mostly taken somewhere in the garden, either in the shade of a tree or under a parasol: jugs of orange juice, baskets of freshly-baked patisserie, home-made jams (they collect the berries from the Murrier tree outside the house and forage for figs in the woods of Mougins to make preserves), goats cheese and scrambled eggs, Herbes de Provence hams, creamy yoghurts, French coffee or English breakfast tea. If you come in winter and breakfast inside, the candelabra on the grand piano is lit.
If you want to stay around all day, Kilpérick can whisk up something for lunch: salads, sandwiches, a plate of cheese, local mushrooms in season, and a cool glass of wine.
For dinner, there's a set daily menu consisting of 3 delectable courses. Kilpérick cooks. You might get ginger and chicken soup with crème fraiche, local trout in a white wine sauce, and raspberry tart with vanilla ice cream and a fruit coulis. Sometimes a barbecue can be fired up. Thanks to the thriving garden, much of the fresh produce is plucked straight from the plant and into the pot. Note that dinner is served daily during the high season, and on request at other times.
There are plenty of places to eat out should you desire to leave the gardens. In the nearby ancient hilltop village of Mougins (a 5-minute drive) you’ll find the Michelin two-star Le Moulin de Mougins. For good country cooking and friendly service, try Le Petit Fouet, which doubles as a shop selling jars of truffles, fois gras, coq au vin. Our favourite spot was the busy Bistro de Mougins where we ate the most delicious duck breast with ginger and honey.
Although the house is small, up to 3 children at a time are very welcome and extra beds are available.
Suite St. Honorat is the best option as it can accommodate up to 3 extra kids on rollaway beds. All the other suites can fit either an extra bed or baby cot. We'd recommend either Suite St. Honorat or St. Marguerite (depending on the size of your family) as they are on the ground floor and have easy access to the gardens.