|Domaine de la Baume in Provence opens June 27.|
Maisons & Hotels Sibuet, a family-owned collection of French boutique hotels, will open Domaine de la Baume in southeastern France’s Tourtour in late June. Jocelyne and Jean-Louis Sibuet started Sibuet Hotels & Spa in 1989 with the opening of Les Fermes de Marie in Megève. Since then, the company has changed its name to Maisons & Hotels Sibuet, and developed nine other hotels, which are in the French regions of Val Thorens, Lyon, Menerbes, Saint-Tropez, and now, Tourtour.
The new Domaine de la Baume is housed in an 18th-century building, formerly the home of artist Bernard Buffet. Set between the Verdon Gorges (think French Grand Canyon) and the French Rivieria, Tourtour is one of the most beautiful villages in southern France. The intimate 15-bedroom hotel sits on 99 acres of land, giving it a small yet spacious feeling. The hotel has formal French-style gardens, ponds, an olive tree grove, a chapel and waterfalls. Amenities include the Sibuet’s signature Pure Altitude Spa with four indoor treatment rooms, an outdoor spa by the waterfalls, a tennis court, a fitness center, and a heated pool. Three of the hotel’s 15 bedrooms are suites, but for the real royal treatment, guests should book a stay in the grand “Annabel Suite,” named after Buffet’s wife.
Nice Touch: Tourtour is in a part of Provence that is not yet too touristy. Guests can stop in at one of the cafés in the town square and enjoy living like a local. Back at the hotel, Chef Francois Martin cooks meals inspired by local flavors and ingredients including truffles, home-made olive oil, vegetables from the garden and honey from the property’s beehives.
Owner Jocelyne Sibuet does all the interior design for Maison & Hotels Sibuet. Each one, she says, has a distinct identity that reflects the region in which it is set. Domaine de la Baume, for example, was designed with 18th-century Provence style in mind.