The hotel is a converted 19th century large French house, basically cube-shaped with a roof, set at the top of a hill-side looking down across a valley with a railway line and the River Nive (both hidden by trees) to the city beyond. Bedrooms are on all three floors - there is no lift and there is a climb to the top floor. The hotel is set in rather bare grass-covered terraced grounds, provided with garden chairs and tables. There is enough parking inside the gate which is locked at night (but there is a code for the gate and the door if you come back late). The area is suburban, without character.
Rooms are individually furnished and designer decorated to a high standard with new furniture but in an antique style, ours apparently refurbished recently. The room was clean, the bed comfortable. The bathroom off the bedroom had glass doors and the toilet faced directly into the bedroom, with a view both ways... The TV has a large number of French, Spanish and Basque channels but none in English. We could hear distant trains throughout the night but not as a disturbance to sleep. Only the one ground-floor room is wheelchair accessible.
The public areas are limited. There is a patio to sit in the afternoon sun and a room with dining tables for breakfast, served at the table, with a basic continental breakfast of fresh food, and optional eggs etc available on request at extra cost. There is no restaurant as such but there are evening drinks and after 6.30 pm a limited selection of simple dishes are available, such as pate and toast, or pan-fried duck breasts with salad. You can have food served on a tray in your room or at the tables in the breakfast room. We found this suited a regime in which we had an ample French lunch at a restaurant in the middle of the day as a break from sightseeing and returned to the hotel for what amounted to a gourmet snack at the end of the day.
There are few staff and they are attentive and courteous. Other guests were well-off international tourists and rather cold.
It is a stylish hotel but a stay here lacks warmth and homely touches.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Charming country house style hotel in a recently converted building dating back to 1905 and situated in a haven of peace and quiet with its secluded and well kept gardens on the heights of the River Nive, near the historical centre of Bayonne.At the Hotel Villa we will do our best to make your stay, whether it be on holiday or on business, restful and relaxing.Our hotel is located on a hill overlooking the River Nive. ... more less
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