Decadent spa, exceptional food and an unmatched wine offering, the endlessly luxurious Domaine de Verchant hotel has it all. Here’s what we thought of it.
Words Alexandra Hunter
The most luxurious of five-star hotels, Domaine De Verchant is an exceptionally renovated vineyard and estate dating back to the sixteenth century. With three swimming pools, an extensive spa, wine caves, 17 hectares of vineyards, elegant French gardens as well as two restaurants to cater to all tastes, this hotel actually does have it all.
Rooms range from very comfortable doubles in the main chateaux to luxurious suites with balconies and an outdoor jacuzzi, as well as a private cottage overlooking the vineyards. We stayed in a beautiful suite with the original period features retained, exposed stone walls, incorporated into stylish, modern, interior design. The suite was vast yet intimate and every need was preempted and catered for; you could want for nothing. The wine in the room was from the estate and delicious, and the service was exemplary.
This 2000 sq foot spa is the epitome of tranquillity. A large gym offers personal training and state of the art equipment, while the spa features a Turkish bath, jacuzzi, three saunas a large indoor pool, over 60 treatments and a relaxation room. You could easily lose hours here. For me the highlight was the generously-sized infinity pool overlooking the vineyards with double beds strategically placed for reading, relaxing or just enjoying the sunshine.
La Plage brasserie has the feel of an exclusive Ibiza beach club and offers waterside dining in a relaxed and very chic setting. Mauve wisteria falls from the ceilings and archways matching the linen of the restaurant and crisp white table clothes shine in the sunshine. The cucumber soup was heavenly and the menu is light and delicious, perfect for after a dip in the pools. More formal dining is in the chateaux itself, with seasonal menus created by Damien Cousseau. We started with slowly cooked squid accompanied by mussels and green asparagus and finished with a strawberry dessert like no other. Gourmet creations are accompanied by wines from the vineyards, overlooking the formal gardens.
What to do
The Domaine de Verchant is a 10-minute drive away from the charming town of Montpellier. Wander down the beautiful side roads and discover medieval monuments, beautiful churches and exceptional views. The food in the town is glorious and the antique shops contain all sorts of treasures. A little further afield are the many beaches of the region, popular with locals and easily accessible by tram or car. Bikes are available for exploring the grounds at the chateaux if you understandably don’t want to leave the haven.
Rooms at Domaine de Verchant start from €240 a night based on two people sharing. For more information and to book, visit domainedeverchant.com