Hotel de Toiras – Ile de Ré, France
Le Toiras enjoys quite possibly one of the best locations on the Ile de Ré. Right at the entrance to the harbour in Saint-Martin de Ré, this 17th century shipowner’s house, is also one of the island’s most exclusive hotels. With its typical French salon feel, and extraordinary attention to detail, it’s a haven the moment you step over the threshold. The interiors are an elegant mix of luxurious fabrics, antiques and an abundance of original features. The service is also hard to beat. All in all, it’s the perfect place from which to explore the beguiling Ile de Ré, and one to which you’ll definitely want to return.
At A Glance
Why We Love It:We love this luxurious hotel for its location near the bustling port town of Saint-Martin-de-Ré. Cocktails & culture in the sunshine!
Style:Grandiose & classic French.
Location:In the heart of Saint-Martin de Ré, on the Ile de Ré, an island off the west coast of France.
Rooms:18 individually styled rooms & suites.
Swimming:A 10 minute walk to the beach at La Cible & access to the pool at Villa Clarisse (€50 per person).
Children:Très family friendly, cots available upon request.
Accessibility:1 of the rooms is especially adapted.
Open From:March - November.
Price:From €430 per room, per night.
Furnished and decorated by some of France’s leading artisans and international names, Le Toiras has a charm and character all of its own. Each of the rooms and suites is classically designed and uniquely styled – named after famous painters and historical figures and with their stories evident throughout. The word “boudoir” definitely springs to mind. The rooms have views over the harbour, garden or fortresses.
One of the things we love the most about the Ile de Ré is the food. A wander around the markets in Saint-Martin de Ré and Le Bois Plage, with their abundance of fresh produce is a trip to another world. Le Toiras uses the island’s bounty to create some truly fabulous dishes, and the seafood is something else. On the large terrace at George’s overlooking the bustling harbour, you can breakfast, lunch and dinner – it’s the greatest spot for dining and people watching.
The Blue Note Bar and the Salon d’Olivia offer elegant surroundings for cocktails or tea, opening out onto the very splendid terrace and gardens.
For a very small island, there are a remarkable two hundred kilometres of cycle paths on the Ile de Ré, and a bicycle is the best form of transport to explore. Along the coast, you’ll find empty beaches and miles of salt flats, interspersed with picturesque villages for lunch stops and browsing the countless boutiques and galleries. The waters around the island are perfect for a sedate boat or fishing trip, and Le Toiras can organise pretty much anything with the vessels berthed just feet way in the harbour.
On the western coast, facing the Atlantic, you’ll find surfing and kitesurfing, whilst the coastal marshes are ideal for paddleboarding. The island has a nine hole golf course – a tee off time can be reserved for you, and back on the mainland close to La Rochelle, there’s an eighteen hole course. However, once you arrive, it won’t take you long to relax into the pace of the island, and just spend your days quietly exploring.
Le Toiras gives families a very warm welcome and the island itself could not be a more perfect place for children. The paths are safe to cycle and what better way to find a beach or a creperie? The rooms and suites can accommodate families, and cots can be requested for children up to three years old.
Ile de Ré, France
In the heart of Saint-Martin de Ré, on the Ile de Ré, an island off the west coast of France, just 25 minutes from La Rochelle airport.