When you want the very best hotels in Antibes and money is a secondary consideration, look no further than my selection of top hotels. These offer luxury living at its best, in Juan-les-Pins, Antibes and on the fabulous Cap d'Antibes.
Hotel du Cap-Eden Roc
Best for: Sheer luxury with the jet-set
High up on the cliffs at the end of the Cap d’Antibes and looking out over the crystal clear Mediterranean, the Hotel du Cap attracts the jet set seeking privacy in a luxurious setting. The palace, designed in 19th-century Napoleon III style, offers grand living with all the comforts of the 21st century. Dine looking out to sea with the scent of mimosa and lavender in the air.
There’s a sea water pool, a spa and a delightful three-bedroomed Villa Eleana if you want to live the life of a private landowner with all the amenities of the hotel.
Best for: Literary hell-raising
The Hôtel Belles-Rives in Juan-les-Pins really is one of those ‘legendary’ places, for the Belles-Rives harks back to the heady French Riviera in the 1920s. Once the home of Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald who lived it up on the Riviera, Great Gatsby style, the hotel has a spectacular setting overlooking the Mediterranean and a 1930s ocean-liner inspired décor that makes you want to pick up the novel Tender is the Night and head straight for the pool.
Along with its pretty bedrooms, luxurious en-suite bathrooms and tree-shaded terraces, it all adds up to an experience of understated elegance. Add to this the skills of Aurélien Véquaud who has worked in other top hotels and restaurants in the south of France. It all makes a meal in La Passagère memorable. For more casual dining, the delightful Le Bistrot Terrace offers a Mediterranean menu and a wide selection of wines by the glass.
Best for: Art Deco character in the middle of Juan-les-Pins
The Juana, owned by the Hôtel Belles-Rives, has been redecorated as a contemporary 1930s Art Déco classic but with a simple, modern feel. Decorated in warm woods, velvets and silks, the 40 bedrooms have ensuite marble bathrooms and the suites have large balconies overlooking the sea.
Although right in the heart of Juan-les-Pins just opposite a pine tree-filled park where musicians play during the famous summertime Juan-les-Pins jazz festival, the hotel is quiet and the pool offers a welcome retreat from the glitzy resort. There’s a fitness center for the sporting, and the Café Juana by Llorca which offers a great range of wines by the glass and bistro dishes.
Your best bet for dining is in the restaurants of the Belles-Rives hotel, just 200 meters away.
La Garoupe Gardiole
Best for: Discreet luxury in a gorgeous setting
In the poshest part of the Cap, this 5-star hotel, part of the Relais & Chateaux group, is a charming two-storey, pink-washed grand villa set in its own delightful parkland of tall shady palm trees and luxuriant vegetation. Elegant bedrooms are decorated in pastel colours using classic south of France textiles from names like Pierre Frey; all have balconies and some have private gardens as well.
The relaxed atmosphere stretches to the restaurants: Le Pavillon restaurant with its shaded terrace and fine dining, and Le Pavillon Beach by the sea, which is the casual venue for dishes with a more international flavor. If you’re a really keen gourmet, book a cookery class (but only in April, May, September and October).
The Cap d'Antibes Beach Hotel
Best for: Summer nights in fashionable Antibes
For something more modern, book at the new boutique Cap d’Antibes Beach Hotel, a member of Relais & Chateaux. Overlooking Juan-les-Pins, it's a change from the prevalent Provençale style. Marine murals on the walls of the 27 bedrooms and suites set the tone: it’s bold, contemporary and sophisticated. Set in parkland, there’s a summer spa beside the sea, and two restaurants, the Michelin-starred Les Pêcheurs and Le Cap for simple meals under the pine trees.
La Baie Doree
Best for: Classic style right on the Mediterranean
Set on the eastern side of the Cap and so near the sea that the clear light of the Mediterranean sparkles through the huge windows into the rooms, the 17 rooms at La Baie Dorée are set in a series of rectangular spaces and small towers with balconies, topped with typical terracotta tiles. Rooms are decorated in classic Provençale style; there’s an outdoor pool, a private beach and a private dock for your yacht. What more could you want?
AC Hotel Ambassadeur
Best for: Modern living and conference facilities
This huge hotel complex (221 rooms) from Marriott is near the Palais des Congres in Juan-les-Pins. It's ideal for conferences and for those holiday makers who want all modern amenities. The central light-filled patio and renovated rooms have a thoroughly modern look and feel. There's a gym, pool and three restaurants (including one on their fabulous private beach).
Best for: Provencal charm and breakfast in the garden
This charming 24-bedroom hotel set in a 1930s building, is just a couple of blocks from the sea at Juan-les-Pins and feels like a real discovery. Tucked away in a very pretty, almost secret, garden it’s delightfully decorated in simple Provençale style, with breakfast served on the terrace. There’s a small but pretty pool and a great welcome.
Le Pre Catelan
Best for: Quirky charm and good value
This charming hotel in a villa built in the 1900s has just 24 rooms, all refurbished. Decorated in typical Provençale style, the hotel has a casual, welcoming atmosphere. Bathrooms have either a shower or bath, so check if you have a preference. Just 200 meters from the beaches of Juan-les-Pins, there’s a small heated outdoor pool and a terrace looking onto the mature garden for breakfast.
Address: 27 Avenue des Palmiers
Hotel La Villa
Best for: A secluded hotel on the edge of town
Just on the edge of Juan-les-Pins and the Cap d’Antibes, the long white building of La Villa looks out towards the sea. It feels hidden away, far from the glitz of the coast, but is very close to the sea. Two separate buildings house the rooms: six in Le Pavillon decorated in pearly whites and greys and 20 in the main building with dark wooden floors and simply but elegantly decorated rooms. All rooms have balconies; there’s a garden full of mature trees and an outdoor heated pool.