I’ve recently come to realise that my predilection for booking last minute sun breaks around this time of year is not unusual at all (add that to the list, Tom Jones). I, and a fair few friends who’ve also just splashed out on holidays, seem to get a bit nervous about the retreat of the sun/the prospect of months of woolies come September, and plough any spare cash into heading to Europe for a final hurrah before the big chill sets in.
If you’re questioning my logic in choosing sunny spots as the days are shortening, consider that travelling around now means: bearable temperatures, cheaper fares, no children on holidays, space on beaches if you’re a sun worshipper, and being able to get reservations at restaurants if you’re not. In short, autumn + travel = the dream situ.
In celebration of Europe and travel and the end of summer, things are about to get a little holiday-centric around here. Dive in, enjoy the pictures/vlogs for a vicarious kick, and perhaps something I show you will tickle your taste buds.
First up, Terre Blanche. I visited this little jewel in the South of France last year for a freelance travel job and have only just unearthed all the pictures I took while out there. I’ve been assured it looks the same now and as I still think it’s a peach…
The Good //
The Sleeping Quarters / The rooms – sorry, villas; at TB there aren’t any standard ‘rooms’ – have all the standard five star stuff, while remaining homely. The earthy-toned surfaces in particular were most welcome; in mirrored bathrooms, I find myself polishing the surfaces so no fingerprints are left in my wake like a clever murderer in a juicy Scandi noir. My favourite bit was the terrace, where breakfast can be served (for no extra charge) should you so wish.
The Spa / Airy and in keeping with the whole rustic luxe thing, I almost regretted having booked a massage when I saw the pool. But not quite – my masseur had the firm hands of a vice and my travel-weary muscles perked up again under his grip. After that I headed to the outdoor relaxation area to perch on one of the sun loungers with some cucumber water.
The Pool / Partly outstanding because the sun beds are so ludicrously comfy but also because they’ve nailed the layout so that it’s communal without feeling cramped in the slightest. I suspect the pool coupled with the room service breakfast option is the reason for the celeb contingent of the guests.
The Not Quite So Good //
The Food / Though presented nicely, I found that the hotel food was still, well, ‘hotel food’ in the pejorative sense – not very tasty, and a little heavy-handed on the sugar/cream front. The other thing: barely any non-meat options that didn’t rely heavily on cheese. Atkins fans would be in heaven, those of us who’ve come to revere the humble vegetable, not so much.