Hostellerie De L'Abbaye Hotel
1 Place des Epoux Laurant, Celles-sur-Belle, France
Alain Ducasse’s Provencal outpost was never going to be anything other than the last word in romance, but as you sip a cold pastis on the terrace, the extent of the hotel’s charm will still come as a surprise. Located in the shadow of a 12th-century abbey in the protected village of La Celle, this fine-dining restaurant also has ten rooms. Terracotta tile floors are covered with oriental rugs, while the Lucrèce de Barras Suite boasts a canopied bed. Our room pick is the Etiennette de Sault, which has French doors leading onto a garden with views over rolling lavender fields. Of course, the real draw is the food. Chef Nicolas Pierantoni puts his twist on classic plates, such as gnocchi filled with sweet almond and lemon juice mash. All the ingredients are grown on site or sourced from within 30km of the hotel. As dusk falls, the tables under the cypress trees are lit by lanterns, making a perfect spot for an apéritif. We recommend the La Comtesse, local sparkling wine with peach liqueur and grapefruit juice. Doubles from £215.