Perched on Brittany’s coastline, Le Grand Hôtel Dinard is a masterpiece comprised of ocean-inspired interiors, modernised amenities and delectable fine dining.
Having reopened its doors in April 2019 following an extensive makeover from top to bottom, editor Sophie Ritchie shares why this luxe French property makes an excellent spring escape.
It’s no surprise that ‘Grand’ is found in the name of the hotel – this seafront property has been exuding luxury for over 150 years. Designed by the brilliant Jacques Garcia and part of the Barriere group, it’s one of the family-owned brand’s crown jewels – a beacon of finery with 86 rooms, two suites and a sense of aristocratic opulence throughout.
This status stems from its enviable emerald coast location (guests can gaze across to Saint-Malo’s ramparts) and reputation as a place to ‘see and be seen’ – dating back to Dinard’s heyday as ‘Dinard of a Hundred Hotels’ and France’s most popular seaside resort.
Step over the immaculate threshold to find a world of seamless luxury awaiting you. This five-star stay offers six different room categories for guests, with refined furnishings and modern decor courtesy of Alexandre Danan in each.
Billowing curtains, huge beds and timeless style – all are beautiful in their own right, but I recommend booking a Deluxe Sea View Room for something memorable.
The sprawling views across the harbour are stupendous – but it’s the Nespresso machines, nautical touches, minibars and large bathrooms with Barriere toiletries that’ll leave you lingering.
Don’t forget the fluffy robes and slippers hanging patiently on the back of the door – you’ll need these for the downstairs spa, where a kingdom of contemporary pampering awaits.
Following the renovations, a sleek new 300m2 of wellness-inspired space calls to be explored. The Diane Barrière Spa is an avant-garde area featuring a modish heated indoor pool, sauna, steamy hamman and small yet well-equipped gym.
Float through the different rooms and let tension ebb away as you test out everything from water jets to weights. The pampering treatments here are a hotel highlight; treat yourself to an expert massage enhanced by Ligne St Barth products and your body will thank you.
After a long day of exploring Dinard and beyond, there’s few things more comfortable in this world than curling up on one of the many sun loungers and basking in the slow-paced atmosphere of this tranquil haven.
Ooh La La Dining
From dawn to dusk, guests can expect to be fed and watered in excellent fashion. Breakfast like a king at Le George V, where a wide array of buffet tables await to be visited under the impressively high ceilings. Smoked salmon, eggs, meats, fruit and of course, pastries – there’s little not to be found on the pristine counters.
Dinner at Le George V is a more formal affair – the room comes to life when guests file in to try a menu filled with regional cuisine and fresh fish dishes. Say au revoir to the diet and order carefully arranged plates of fresh produce with flair.
The interiors are unsurprisingly dazzling – think beige-backed chairs, hanging chandeliers, silky carpets and pristine white walls, with conjure a refined ambience that pairs perfectly with good company and a glass of your favourite local wine. The well-stocked cellar makes sure of that.
For cocktails, night caps and lighter bites, sit back and soak up the atmosphere at The Le 333, an intimate café that brings a younger air of sophistication to the property.
What to do
1 Lunch at nearby Bouchon Breton – you’re just a short stroll away from foliage-friendly interiors, mural-clad walls and excellent French cuisine. au-bouchon-breton.com
2 Trek across the water via one of the regular ferries to Saint-Malo for a few hours of exploring through the historic streets. Don’t even think about getting back on-board without sampling a freshly-made crepe, of which the area is famous for. saint-malo-tourisme.co.uk
3 Browse for everything from trinkets to mouth-watering ingredients at the town’s indoor & outdoor Dinard Market. Here, stallholders sell a plethora of eye-catching wares. Crockery, clothing, local gifts and fresh produce – you’ll find it all and more.
The Wordrobe Verdict
Gourmand glamour galore. Full of refined character, Le Grand Hôtel Dinard makes an excellent coastal escape. Whether you’re exploring the area or simply sitting back in the spa, you’re bound to fall for the charm of this prestigious property.
Make it happen
Where: 46 Avenue George V 70143, 35801 Dinard, France
Wallet: Prices start from £228 per night, based on two people sharing.
How: Visit hotelsbarriere.com to find out more and make a booking.
Getting there: Roughly three hours from Paris via train.
Words by Sophie Ritchie, editor