This was a bit of an unusual week away for us. Kim had been persistently asking us to join her and friends in St Tropez for her birthday for a few years. We’d insisted that we didn’t think that St Tropez would be “our thing”. She wondered how we could judge such a thing without giving it a try.
So, our cunning plan to please everyone including ourselves was to arrange a fly-drive week in the South of France, initially doing our own thing for a few days…
and then joining up with Kim, Micky and others in “San-trop”.
Auntie Janet at Ultimate Travel helped us to construct our itinerary but I cannot find any papers from her, only this quote from her e-mail/invoice:
French Expressions holidays including flights;
Automatic car hire throughout and three nights accommodation
in a Junior Suite at L’Auberge du Chateau de Berne on a bed
and breakfast basis
So, in brief, we flew to Nice and picked up a car for our week in France. We stayed three nights at the delightful Chateau de Berne Hotel and Spa.
We did a bit of touring…
…together with a lot of resting, wining and dining; three nights there. Lovely sun deck for reading; great to try their wines and we even played some ping pong (Daisy’s favourite, because she normally wins).
Then on to St Tropez for four nights at the Tahiti Beach Hotel…
…where Kim and Micky regularly stay. We arrived the day before the others, so played tennis and then ate at a Vietnamese restaurant named Bahn Hoi, recommended by Anthea. Very nice but also very pricey. That’s St Tropez for you.
Next day we have an early morning snoop around the market…
…then finally meet up with Kim and Micky for lunch at Tahiti that day.
We worked off the lunch on the tennis court. Dinner that evening is at Villa Romana, with Robert, Fiza and their son/girlfriend too. A very fashionable place but it is heaving and displeases me; food ordinary apart from the price:
Next day, we played tennis in the morning. Indeed, we played tennis at Tahiti on the tennis court there a few times. Not the best surface we have ever played on, but far from the worst. As our short stay went on, we found it harder and harder to play tennis for an hour; a cautionary tale for all of us.
Same gang as last night for lunch at Tahiti; then after siesta an evening at Stefano Forever.
I was dreading this one but actually it was more fun. As it was pre-season, the show was a tryout and we were the only guests, so we got to have a lot of fun as audience participation could only be us…
…and we were the only possible invitees to the after show party…
…Janie even tried her hand at pole dancing…of sorts.
The final day was Kim’s actual birthday. Despite the excesses of the night before, lunch between the four of us (the Robert Anthony family, perhaps knowing the score, made themselves scarce that lunchtime) was a boozy and celebratory affair:
Indeed, after siesta Janie swore that she couldn’t make it to the arranged dinner for six of us (son and girlfriend were gone by now) at L’Auberge de Maures, but then changed her mind. In this photo, I look almost as rough as I felt.
In truth, our view that this sort of eating and drinking extravaganza is not really our thing was reinforced by this trip, but we made Kim happy for her birthday that year and at least we can now say we’ve tried it.
Lots more photos, including those above, in this Flickr album, but surely more for the cognoscenti (i.e. those who were there) than for general consumption. I probably can construct a few good tales from the trusty journal once I get around to it; for now here is the indecipherable scribblings: Provence and St Tropez April 2008 Journal Notes.