Saint-Tropez’s Newest Retreat: Hôtel Lou Pinet
July 18, 2019 by Laura Fishman
Saint-Tropez was once a sleepy village with picturesque seascapes, Provençal facades and eternal sunshine. Then the 1950’s came, and with it Brigitte Bardot’s And God Created Women. From that moment on, the seaside gem on the Côte d’Azur has been synonymous with the bon vivant lifestyle. All summer long, Saint-Tropez buzzes with sun-worshipers and beach-clubbers. The fall brings Les Voiles, the sailing competition that draws jetsetters from around the globe.
Now, there’s a new place to hide away from the hubbub – or dive right into it, should you wish. Set in a residential area a five-minute drive from Places des Lices, Hôtel Lou Pinet is a chic hideaway where the spirit of the 1960’s and 1970’s lives on. Welcoming guests for the first time this summer, it’s the latest passion project by Maisons Pariente. Their aim is to connect guests back to the simplicity of Saint-Tropez. Surrounded by local villas rather than bumping nightclubs, the effect is undeniable.
The vision was brought to life by French designer Charles Zana, who pays homage to 19th and 20th century artists like Matisse, Chagall, Cocteau and Picasso. The colorful motifs and playful nods are sure to charm art and design aficionados. When combined with chic neutrals and contemporary artworks present throughout the common spaces and bar, the effect is fresh, vibrant and welcoming, like a stylish friend’s home.
The 34 rooms and suites are set across three Provençal homes, painted light yellow and accented with green wooden shutters. While some rooms have a view of the private garden, those with a pool view offer the most light. Rooms are decorated in neutrals, with pops of color that celebrate Saint-Tropez’s bohemian flair. (The charming pom-pom-accented pillows come to mind.) Bathrooms come with five-star amenities and custom products from Le Labo.
While it’s not on the beach, Lou Pinet has a beautiful garden crowned with a sparkling pool. With chaise lounges shaded by pine trees, it’s an idyllic place for a chilled glass of rosé from the outdoor bar. If you’ve had enough sun, head inside to the intimate bar for pre-dinner cocktails.
Mornings begin with a buffet of fresh pastries, cheeses, charcuterie, fruits, granola, cereal and juices. Lunch and dinner are served on the sprawling terrace, decorated with colorful pillows, sleek woods and twinkling lights. You’ll feel like you’re dining at a summer garden party. The menu, courtesy of Riccardo Giraudi’s Beefbar, features Angus beef, Kobe beef and Wagyu beef. For those seeking lighter fare, there are zesty salads, like fennel with pomegranate and orange, or flavorful fish straight from the Mediterranean. Don’t miss the tuna tostaditas with habanero sauce, or the Hamachi crudo made with yellowtail sashimi and seasoned with lemon soy sauce and summer truffle.
For even more indulgence, head to the Tata Harper Spa, an intimate oasis tucked inside a hidden cave. Treatments include massages, restorative treatments and facials using Tata Harper’s signature organic products.
For those looking to explore the city or go shopping for the day, a daily shuttle that runs from 8:00am until midnight. The well-connected concierge team can arrange afternoon sailing with a picnic, wine-tasting in Côte du Rhône’s celebrated vineyards, visiting artisans at the Cogolin rug factory or shopping through Saint-Tropez or Ramatuelle’s markets.
Or, let the rest of them jostle for space in the beach clubs. You can spend your days slowly, like a true bon vivant, as if it were Saint-Tropez in the olden days.
Reaching Saint-Tropez can be challenging due to traffic, especially in July and August. International guests can fly into Toulon-Hyères Airport (TLN) or Nice Côte d’Azur International Airport (NCE). It is recommended to rent a car as the nearest train station is in Saint-Raphaël.
For those traveling through France on a road trip, stays can be combined with other coastal villages along the Côte d’Azur. Just a 2.5-hours drive but a world away, Provence is filled with stunning landscapes, history, bountiful markets and celebrated vineyards. Combine a coastal and countryside retreat with a stay at its sister property, Hôtel Crillon le Brave, set in a medieval village just 25 miles northeast of Avignon.
Hôtel Lou Pinet
70 Chemin du Pinet
Telephone: +33 (0) 4 94 97 04 37