The tranquil Coquillade Provence Resort & Spa, developed from a cluster of medieval country houses in the Luberon hills, is a glamorous, sophisticated resort that epitomizes the allure of Provence like few other places.
South of France, and Provence in particular, has so much to offer — from lavender fields to medieval hilltop hamlets and from Mediterranean cuisine to glamorous shopping boutiques. And the Coquillade Provence reflects the best sides of the region.
The impression that we were approaching a special place — as the car turned into the cypress-lined alley, cutting through the undulating vineyards — persisted throughout the welcome ceremony (which included champagne). A relaxed tour of the property followed while the personnel took care of our car and luggage.
The hotel occupies a picturesque spot on top of a hill with slender cypress trees dotting the landscape. It reminded us of Tuscany, but the original stone hamlet at the heart of the property exudes the Provençal charm of the Luberon area. The complex comprises old bastides — or rural houses, some dating to medieval times — augmented by newer buildings constructed in recent years. As we were led to our room, we felt as if walking through a traditional village, albeit one with wide and comfortable pathways.
The hotel experience
There are only sixty-three rooms and suites at La Coquillade. Some suites are located in ivy-covered villas; many rooms have unique floor plans and interiors. But every guest has access to a private garden, a veranda, or a roof terrace with sun loungers. Larger suites benefit from a sauna, double rain showers, and a whirlpool bathtub, and they generally enjoy views over the valley. If you feel like splashing out, the hotel has recently unveiled a new accommodation category: standalone pool villas (we toured them: they are fantastic!).
Our suite, more humble and located in the new building complex, had a lounge and a shaded balcony, looking over the vineyards and the spa garden.
Speaking of the Spa, it’s almost its own destination. It’s the largest wellness complex in the region. It features a sauna, multiple steam rooms, hot and cold plunge pools, jacuzzis, and an indoor swimming pool. The spacious treatment rooms include rooms for couples. Besides massages, scrubs, facials, and so on, the menu includes after-sport treatments designed to relieve and relax tired muscles.
This is in keeping with activities enabled by the Coquillade: nature walking and hiking, tennis, fitness (including weights), and, above all, cycling. The hotel has an excellent bike rental center branded BMC Racing (the hotel’s owner is involved with a high-performance racing team).
Other attractions — partaking in which presumably doesn’t require regenerative therapies — include vineyard walks, wine-tasting, and pétanque. The hotel also has two outdoor pools for day-long lounging if that’s all you want from your vacation.
An important part of the Coquillade Provence experience is dining. Normally, there are three restaurants here and a bar, but at the time of our visit, the Avelan restaurant was closed. Still, that left the Italian La Cipresa (by the swimming pool, excellent for lunch) and Les Vignes, which served breakfast and dinner. Every course seemed a work of art at Les Vignes.
During our stay here, we explored nearby towns and hilltop villages, such as Lacoste, Bonnieux, and Goult (did you follow our trip on Instagram?). But in some way, the best thing about these sightseeing trips was coming back. The hotel felt like a haven of tranquility, wrapping us in its calming embrace every evening as cicadas sang in the falling night.