Dreamy Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat and neighbouring Beaulieu-Sur-Mer have been holiday retreats for the well-heeled since the 1800s. Henri Matisse, Churchill, Virginia Woolf, Richard Burton and the Rolling Stones, are amongst a roll call of nobility and celebrity that have whiled away long summer days here.
Home to some of the world’s most exclusive villas, Cap Ferrat, a former fishing village now known as ‘The Peninsular of Billionaires’, was the place to be and be seen long before St Tropez became St Tropez! While over at Beaulieu the hills are filled with soft pink and pastel coloured Belle-Époque villas, and the streets are lined with citrus and olive trees. Its charm today is that it has largely resisted commercialisation and retains the atmosphere and authenticity of a traditional and relaxed French seaside town.
With sunshine and blue sky through to late October, and a mere 20-minute drive from Nice, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat and Beaulieu offer the perfect option for a luxe long-weekend getaway.
Inspired by Stuart’s Riviera Dreaming collection we list our favourite places in the area to eat, stay and play.
A beloved holiday haven for Queen Victoria, this Florentine-style villa – and notably its infamous Gordon Bennett Bar - has hosted the best of 1950’s and 60’s Hollywood: Rita Hayworth, Liz Taylor, Steve McQueen and Paul Newman to name a few.
A perfect shade of candy pink, the villa was built between 1905 and 1912 for Baroness Beatrice de Rothschild and is inspired by the Italian Renaissance. The villa is surrounded by 4 acres of exquisite, tiered gardens comprising 9 different themed areas: including French, Spanish, Japanese, French Provencal, and the enviable the Rose Garden. Spend a day or early evening exploring the grounds, and meander through the villa to view Beatrice’s collection of fine art, porcelain, and furniture.