Curio Collection Local Guide, La Seyne-sur-Mer
We sent Yodeler Carolane Domart to the Grand Hôtel des Sablettes Plage, Curio Collection by Hilton to create a La Seyne-sur-Mer, France Local Guide. Grand Hôtel des Sablettes Plage is a historic hotel overlooking the Mediterranean Sea perfect for taking in stunning views, golden sunsets and visiting Les Sablettes private beach through direct access. So you can learn more about this Southern France region, Carolane created an incredible local guide full of tips, advice and local secrets just for you.
Name? Carolane Domart
Occupation? I am a freelance social media marketer and blogger.
Preoccupation? My preoccupations are photography, travel and “découvertes gustatives” (tasting discoveries).
Can you sum up La Seyne-sur-Mer? Seyne-sur-Mer is located on the French Rivera just to the west of Toulon in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region of southeastern France. Seyne-sur-Mer is a quiet, romantic place where you feel like you are on an island because you are surrounded by the breathtaking Mediterranean Sea on three sides. Established in 1657, Seyne-sur-Mer has a rich history, sandy beaches, chic shops and very quaint, small harbors.
What is the best thing about La Seyne-sur-Mer? The best thing about Seyne-sur-Mer is the Sablettes Beach. It is a beautiful, white-sand beach stretching one kilometer long in the south of the city where you can sunbathe and swim, scuba dive, windsurf and kayak. The city is also very lively in the summer with concerts, fireworks and magnificent sunsets.
What is a perfect day in La Seyne-sur-Mer? The perfect day begins with waking up to the sound of the sea and eating breakfast at the water’s edge. It continues with a stroll along the sea to enjoy the waves and the sun, eating fish or local oysters. (See below for details and specifics.)
What are the people like in La Seyne-sur-Mer? The people of Seyne-sur-Mer love their city and are all so welcoming, generous and helpful. The locals love to tell stories and share insights about their city and are more than happy to show you around. It’s quite common for taxi drivers to give visitors private guided tours of the city to explain its naval history and share recommendations about different places to visit.
If La Seyne-sur-Mer was a person who would it be? Seyne-sur-Mer would be a sailor. For more than 100 years, Seyne-sur-Mer was a prosperous European shipbuilding center. Times have changed, and Seyne-sur-Mer inhabits a more modern, seaside feel. To relive its glorious past, visit the maritime museum, harbors and marinas, fish markets, and beautiful villas from a bygone era.
Tell us about your experience at the Grand Hôtel des Sablettes Plage, Curio Collection by Hilton: The Grand Hôtel des Sablettes Plage, Curio Collection by Hilton is a charming hotel overlooking the sea with a décor that reflects and builds on the city’s rich nautical and travel history. My room was called Grand Large, and it was gorgeous. Decorated like a ship, it was light, bright and airy. From the balcony, I had a panoramic view of the Sablettes Beach, the hotel swimming pool, and landscaped terrace.
The hotel has three restaurants. La Galerie, the hotel’s terrace bar and restaurant, offers breakfast, lunch, aperitif, and dinner. The food is delicious, the service is very friendly and accommodating, and you can reach the sea and put your feet in the water directly from its terrace. It is absolutely perfect.
At Horizon you can experience Mediterranean-influenced, traditional French cuisine by choosing from a beautiful seven, nine or 11-course menu. The third restaurant, Le Navigateur brassiere, offers the best in local Mediterranean cuisine, including fresh seafood. All of the restaurants have outdoor dining and sea views and beautiful food.
The hotel also has a beautiful spa. Spa des Sablettes – NUXE has a heated swimming pool, a Jacuzzi, a hammam (Turkish bath) and a sauna. Massages are available for those traveling alone or in pairs. I also enjoyed swimming and relaxing at the hotel’s large outdoor pool, which overlooks the sea.
If a friend was visiting La Seyne-sur-Mer what would you suggest they do? I would tell them to wake up early at the Grand Hôtel des Sablettes Plage and have breakfast on the terrace of La Galerie to watch the sunrise, followed by a dive and swim in the hotel’s outdoor pool. Next, I would advise them to take a bus or taxi to the colorful Provencal Street Market in downtown Seyne-sur-Mer (about 15 minutes by taxi). This is the largest street market in Provence, and it is set in a vibrant neighborhood filled with small shops and the sights and sounds of the Mediterranean. (It is open every day except Sunday.)
Following the street market, they should walk to Pont Levant and visit the “Raising Bridge,” an old, moveable, railroad bridge, which is now decommissioned in an upright position. Visitors ascend the 444-meter-high bridge for a gorgeous, 360-degree view of the entire city.
By now it is time for coffee. I recommend they try Torréfaction Café de Cigale. The café is located in a radiant and lively square and offers delicious, artisan-roasted coffee with high-quality biscuits that make good gifts to bring back to family and friends at home.
For lunch, they should return to the hotel and try the Gambas Grillées (grilled shrimp with risotto) at the Navigateur restaurant.
After lunch, I would suggest that my friend take a digestive walk along the Sablettes Bay or go to the Fabredas Beach. If the weather’s not too cold, they should try sunbathing or even swimming in the Mediterranean Sea.
For a cocktail and the sunset, I recommend returning to the elegant terrace of the La Galerie and trying the Iberian Plate or the Mediterranean Plate to sample a variety of Mediterranean delicacies. Then, I suggest they make sure to take a moment to go down to the beach and walk on the sand to catch the sunset. The reflections in the water are magnificent. Finally, for dinner, I suggest they order a local fish called “tamarisk wolf.” When finished, they should return to their room at the hotel and fall asleep listening to the rocking sound of waves breaking on the shore.