There’s a reason Corsica is called the “Isle of Beauty.” Lucky travelers find white crescent beaches straight from the Seychelles, snow-capped peaks, and red craggy cliffs that are so dramatic they’ve earned a spot on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. And the rustic cuisine—recently profiled in Saveur Magazine—means delicious charcuterie and sweets made from chestnut flour. If you’re thinking about traveling to the French Riviera this year, consider a detour to Corsica. (It's just a quick flight from Marseille, and also accessible by ferry.) The best times to visit are in late spring (through early June) and early fall, as high season means crowds of Europeans on their summer vacations, eager to discover the paradise that’s so famous in Europe and yet relatively undiscovered by Americans.
Luxury Travel Advisor recently stopped by Le Maquis, one of the top luxury hotels on the island, to check out the facilities. This is a favorite hideaway for presidents and celebrities (former President Sarkozy vacations here), and its picture-perfect location on the sand of Porticcio, just south of the Ajaccio airport, is a good clue why. The style is decidedly Old World elegant- think lots of wood antiques, oriental carpets, and gilded paintings. And the restaurant, L’Arbousier, is one of the best on the entire island.
There are only 18 rooms and 7 suites at this five-star hotel, and facilities include two pools, a floodlit tennis court, a spa room, and a private beach. We snapped this photo of the view from the pool. For more information, visit www.lemaquis.com.