A weekend getaway at Le Saint-James hotel in Bouliac is within easy reach
A new route which connects in Paris from the Gare du Nord to Montparnasse, cuts the existing journey time by approximately an hour. Passengers will be able to travel from London’s St Pancras station to the South of France in just under six hours. Prices start at £110 for a return ticket for journeys from 2 July onwards.
Nestled within the vineyards on the ‘Balcony of Bordeaux’ the contemporary Relais & Chateaux hotel is ideally located just 10 minutes-drive from the Gare de Saint Jean Bordeaux.
The chic hotel was custom-designed by architect Jean Nouvel. The focal point for each of the hotel’s 18 luxurious bedrooms is the view. Each bed is carefully placed in line with the expansive windows and has breathtaking views over the hotel’s vineyards, outdoor heated swimming pool, the River Garonne and beautiful Bordeaux in the distance.
Headed up by Michelin-starred chef, Nicolas Magie, the hotel’s restaurant is widely regarded as one of the finest eateries in the Aquitaine region. Le Saint-James also owns a fabulous French bistro in the village of Bouliac, just a short walk from the hotel. The bistro sells traditional rotisserie dishes and a tantalising selection of homemade desserts that attract visitors from far and wide.
Cookery classes are available in the hotel’s on-site cookery school, “Côté Cours” and can be tailored according to the varying abilities. Guests can book on a course and learn new skills such as how to prepare fresh scallops and concoct simple, yet colourful and creative dishes which can then be enjoyed in the cookery school with a glass of fine wine.
Food lovers will enjoy the Marché de Producteurs which is hosted by the hotel and open to guests and visitors alike. Featuring gastronomic delights from local suppliers, hotel guests can wander across the hotel’s shaded terrace, sampling and purchasing the fresh, seasonal produce on display. The next market will be held on Sunday 2 April. Subsequent events are running throughout the year and culminate with a festive Marché de Producteurs on 17 December.
For wine lovers, the hotel’s head Sommelier regularly hosts wine tasting sessions, taking guests on an journey through the history of wine in France. Some of the wines that may be sampled are a Château Carbonnieux 2011 – Pessac Léognan, a Ségla 2004 – Margaux as well as the hotel’s own red merlot, Le Vin Du Jardin.
Le Saint-James is passionate about contemporary art and regularly exhibits the works of local artists. The hotel is currently showing the work of Erwin Dazelle, a well-known painter, sculptor and glassmaker from the southwest of France. The exhibition runs until 1 May 2017 and features stunning pieces inspired by stained glass windows. Following this is an exhibition from one of Bordeaux’s most famous visual artists, Alexandra Mas. All the works are for sale and private viewings can be arranged.
Stays at Le Saint-James start at €195 per room per night, room only.
A member of Relais & Chateaux, Le Saint-James is just 8km from Bordeaux in South-West France. It is a contemporary hotel designed in 1989 by the architect Jean Nouvel and is inspired by the tobacco drying barns in the Lot region.
The hotel has 15 modern, spacious bedrooms and 3 themed suites, a Michelin-starred restaurant and a state of the art spacious cookery school, Côté Cours. The hotel has its own private vineyard – the second smallest in the Bordeaux region, with the wine created on-site. As well as the new high speed rail links, Bordeaux Airport is just twenty minutes away by car and flights are available from the UK all year round with British Airways and Easyjet.