When you fly into Nice airport and are instantly immersed in the glamour of the Cote d’Azur, you really do need a chic base to complement your stay. It only seems right that your accommodation should reflect the beauty and style of the region. And with Brad and Angelina recently choosing to tie the knot in their Provence Chateau Miraval, exquisite villas in southern France are very much in vogue. But while it takes Brangelina and co a good half a day to trek across the pond, we can be there in just a few hours.
As we drive the 45 minutes from Nice to Montauroux in east Provence, the traffic fades away and roadsides fill with olive, lemon and fig trees. Bliss. We glide along the banks of Lac de Saint-Cassien, with its crystal blue waters, then climb the hill towards the village of Montauroux.
The weather’s hot for September, so the first thing to do is dump bags, throw on bathers and slip into the cool waters of the pool’s raised jacuzzi. “Champagne?” asks one of my travelling companions, poking her head through the impeccably French sliding doors. Mmm, bubbles inside and out. I feel light and lovely and very much at one with the fash-pack.
From this most-fabulous location I look south across the valley to the Esterel mountains, knowing that the beach is just over the other side, but wondering if there’s any point in leaving the villa to go there.
The Rose de l’Adrechs is part of the hand-picked Affinity Holidays France collection. Owner Marion Edwards overseas the management of all of them and her spectacularly high standards and zero-tolerance of lazy owners means each one is flawless.
In the Prestige collection, this four-bedroom haven is perfectly balanced with modern comforts and classic design: the beds are in top condition, the crockery and glassware fastidiously clean and the walk-in showers are large and powerful, making your stay sumptuously comfortable; while the stone-tiled bathrooms, understated chandeliers and sanded-back furniture give it a feel of timeless elegance. If you organise the stay yourself you can bag the master bedroom with private sun terrace and lovely ensuite.
Eating and Drinking: The villa offers all the self-catering facilities you could need, including a huge fridge begging to be filled with local wine and cheese, plus a full cooker, microwave, and dining-ware. Montauroux village is a pleasant 2kms drive away, where you can stock up on amenities for your stay at the local butchers and boulangerie.
Price: Weekly rates start at £1,620
Address: Rose de l’Adrechs, Chemin de Valcros des Adrechs, 83440 Montauroux, www.affinity-holidays-france.com
Rating: 9/10 – Beautifully clean and wonderfully comfy, the perfect place to set the tone of your serene stay in Provence