Grand-Hotel A better way to Cannes in glittery Cap-Ferrat
Tina Turner, Liza Minelli, Diana Ross, Elton John
Reason to Stay:
Private Villa, Beach Club, Michelin-rated Eatery
Preferred Room:Villa Rose-Pierre
Special Features:Oversize Guest Rooms, Historic Hotel, Celebrity Clientèle
Amenities:Restaurant, Pool, Lounge, Residential Location
Amongst the removed villas of Paul Allen (where Brad and Angelina are holed-up this May) and Russian oligarchs, Cap-Ferrat is a secluded land of billionaires and aristocratic blue bloods far removed from the brashness of St. Tropez and hustle of Monte Carlo. The hotel is also a glittery alternative to the chaos of Cannes while still being close enough to drive-in for the evening action.
The Grand Hotel rises out of a sea of pine trees and camera-encrusted gates, within a residential neighborhood just beyond the main town of Saint Jean Cap du Ferrat. The hotel opened in 1908, attracting much of the Russian imperial family, Pablo Picasso and various British titles for long-weeks on the Mediterranean amongst the property's 17-lush acres of manicured gardens and pine forests. A shaded driveway leads to the main entrance of the hotel; cameras are everywhere as well as the hurried security detail that insists that only guests are allowed to roam the property. The lobby is a stylish balance of old and new, ornate gilded walls and white paneling are offset by fashionable furnishing conducive to formal social mingling and summer conversations. The in-house Le Cap restaurant is presided over by Didier Aniés, a one-star Michelin chef formerly of Monaco's Hotel Mirabeau.
Towering doorways open to lavish garden and panorama of the Mediterranean at almost every angle. Landscaped walkways lead to a decadent pool terrace, also accessible by a private elevator car that hovers down the mountain. The pool is surrounded by teak loungers dripping in heavy terrycloth towels and cornucopia of fit-and-trim or stout bodies united by their hefty bank accounts and taste for the best. A well-known secret of locals is that the pool is actually open to the public, for around 50-70 Euro during the summer months.
The Grand-Hotel is home to 44 rooms and 9 suites varying between pine forest and wide-open ocean views. Entry-level superior rooms are located at the front of the building, on each floor, lined in parquet flooring with antique rugs and Tiffany-blue silk drapery. Beds are tucked with 500-thread count Frette sheets offering quilted headboards and tableside arrangement of freshly picked flowers. Sea View rooms are roomier with the occasional furnished terrace overlooking the Mediterranean. These rooms are furnished in more-modern details with white-tufted headboards and white paneling surrounding comfy seating areas and plasma-equipped entertainment centers. All bathrooms are equipped with double basin sinks and antique marble with deep veins and bronze hue original to the hotel. Those looking for the ultimate privacy should book into Villa Rose-Pierre, located on a private 2.5 acre pad redecorated in 2007 by the famous designer Alberto Pinto with near 6,000 sq. feet of 4 bedrooms, fitness room, sauna, dining room and terraces overlooking the sea.
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