Agent Review: Beaulieu Su Mer, French Riviera
Beaulieu-sur-mer (which translates to “beautiful place by the sea”) is our favorite little town on the French Riviera, 10 minutes by train from Nice, 20 from Monaco and 25 from another charmer Menton; right at the Italian border, where oranges and lemons flourish year round.
Beaulieu is a small town with a wonderful waterfront; it has an authentic replica of a Greek Villa, a casino, a beach area, a port and many shops and restaurants. There are three lovely easy short walks and a short bus ride to a fabulous villa and you barely leave town.
From Beaulieu, you can stroll along a broad, paved path to Port St Jean in 20 minutes for lunch in one of the many restaurants in the port. There are also more adventurous walks which are easily done from here; the pathways become smaller out on the end of the peninsula but are safe for daytime walks. You could circle around Cap Ferrat-where you could climb up to the lighthouse or continue around the peninsula and come out within 15 minutes of where you started. There is another, shorter walk going around Pointe Hospice; it veers to your left after you depart Port St Jean.
Villa Kerylos is the must see Greek Villa waterfront where Plato would feel right at home. Just around the corner from the villa is the Residence Eiffel, where Gustave Eiffel spent his last several years taking in the sunshine. Spend an hour or so at the villa late in the afternoon and then go to Residence Eiffel for a refreshing rest and an adult beverage. Residence clients are mainly retirees who rent by the season but their restaurant is very affordable and the bar has some of the most comfortable chairs I have ever sunk into. The red wines were full bodied and affordable. It was just as comfy, nice and affordable the second time we went back. Sometimes it is very hard to replicate a moment even though it’s the same place, but here, I was not disappointed. There are a plethora of pictures of the various stages of the building of the Eiffel Tower—quite an interesting diversion.
The casino in town is in a stunning building. You need to dress and pay an admission to enter, and it’s an experience to rival a night at Monte Carlo, and you can walk home.
Le Petit Africa is the small beach just north of the port—a blend of sandy and rocky but also a few commercial spots to sit and get a beverage while admiring the water.
You can walk to the next town, Villefranche sur-mer in just 15 minutes by an easy, well-traveled path. This small waterfront town has the Jean Cocteau chapel and of course an abundance of places to sit and while the day away. The waterfront walk is the shortest possible path between the 2 towns.
An easy 15 minute bus can get you to a Rothschild estate, Villa Ephrussi. She outbid the King of Belgium to get this spectacular spot. You can see the inside of the house and the gardens for the admission price. An additional fee (it’s worth it!) is required to see her wonderful art collection upstairs. Outside there are multiple themed mini-gardens where she could entertain daily outdoors with the feeling that they were in a different country each day.
I love this part of the world and the hidden treasures you can find just from taking the time to enjoy the idyllic daily life!
By: Kathleen Chan