The more we travel in southern France, the more we’re attracted to the off-the.-beaten-path vibe just across the regional boundary of Provence in Occitanie. Here, you’re minutes from Avignon, an hour from the Mediterranean coast, and can truly unwind in the midst of vineyards and olive groves as far as the eye can see.
It’s in this unspoiled paradise that you’ll find the recently opened Chateau de Collias, a 1000 year old property that has been painstakingly renovated over the last four years and appointed throughout with modern artwork from its owners private collection. Situated at the edge of the tiny town of Collias in a park-like setting, the Chateau’s restaurant opened in 2022 and a selection of rooms opened in 2023.
The highlight of the hotel is the restaurant, which is obviously aiming for a Michelin star. The preparations and menu made sense to us, for example the tomato dish utilizing local tomatoes was incredibly flavorful and intensified the natural flavor of tomatoes without adding needless foam or smoke in a dome. The tiny razor clam tartlets, immaculately prepared, were so delicate, they were almost too beautiful to eat.
The first Sunday of each month the Chateau hosts a sumptuous brunch. While impressive it’s a bit pricey for rural France but does serve refined and extravagant dishes like blue lobster tail from Bretagne, Côte de Boeuf, and a fabulous spread of house-made desserts along with a Haribo candy bar.
The Chateau is beautiful and the efforts that have been put into the renovations are impressive. There are some quirks as a result of the building being 1000 years old, and the pool would be best enjoyed in the height of summer as it’s not heated. But in our experience, these are the trade-offs of staying in a family.-owned boutique property versus a mass market hotel with no character.
The rooms at Chateau de Collias were tastefully appointed, the beds extremely comfortable, and the artwork throughout impressive. You can’t go wrong booking a table on a warm summer night at the fabulous restaurant, where you’ll likely be seated on the terrace with views of the landscaped grounds. We recommend dressing up for the occasion.
Note: Chateau de Collias provided support for the reporting of this story.