Editors' Picks

Royal Riviera

Discreet, seaside, elegance

3 Avenue Jean Monnet, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferra 06230

+33 49-376-3100

See Website

At a Glance

A more low-key haven on the Riviera compared to the grand palaces, but with a refined touch, friendly staff and lovely location.

Indagare Loves

  • That you can walk into St. Jean or Beaulieu and avoid the region’s notorious traffic
  • The cuisine at its gourmet restaurant La Table du Royal
  • The small sandy beach where attendants set up chaises and water sports


For those who don't need the grandest address on the French Riviera, but want a discreet five-star in Cap-Ferrat, the Royal Riviera is a lovely escape. Constructed in 1904 as a winter getaway for royals and the beau monde, the 94-room and suite hotel sits at the end of a sweeping crescent of beach. Its interiors combine Art Deco and Neo Hellenic influences in a nod to an earlier heyday and the Villa Kerylos, the fabulous ancient Greek villa that sits across the bay. On the main floor, a lovely lounge and restaurant lead out to a Mediterranean garden, the pool and access to a sandy beach. There’s also a coastal path that winds from the base of the hotel around to St.-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, so you can stroll past the grand seaside villas into town for lunch or dinner.

Decorated by French designer Grace Leo Andrieu, the guest rooms blend period touches such as a bas-relief mural and Cocteau-like drawings with contemporary furniture and a soothing summer palette of pale blues and butter yellows. Accommodations are modern, and high ceilings give the rooms a nice airy feeling (which is rare for European hotels). The best of the 78 rooms in the main building have balconies and views facing the gardens and the Mediterranean. There are another 16 guest rooms in the Orangerie, a small villa in the garden.

The main building contains the bar with piano music and the hotel’s gourmet restaurant. Many common spaces have a hint of African-inspired decoration and pops of color (mainly purple), which may be off-putting to some given the design does not naturally complement the region; and, while the heavy colors play well with the sleek bar in the lobby, they are a bit heavy for a seaside hotel during the day. Overall, when the traffic in the South of France becomes unbearable in summer, it is nice to retreat to an elegant oasis in strolling distance to sights, shops and restaurants.

Who Should Stay

Those who want to be in Cap Ferrat but who don’t need to be at the most glamorous address on the point. That title still belongs to Grand-Hôtel du Cap-Ferrat.

Written by Melissa Biggs Bradley

What's Nearby

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Indagare employees walking up stiars

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