The elegant, oh-so-chic Riviera town has long drawn the rich and famous. You too can join the gliterati… at a price, says Claire Vaughan
Queen Victoria’s “paradise of nature”, a favourite of Gustave Eiffel and frequented by Hollywood greats such as Rita Hayworth, Liz Taylor and Steve McQueen, beautiful Beaulieu-sur-Mer is a coastal town between Nice and Monaco, jostling for position on one of the most glamourous stretches of the Riviera.
Beaulieu’s long promenades lined with elegant turn-of-the-century villas, long sandy beaches and towering palm trees give it a timeless, carefree feel. It has pretty harbour areas and an old fishing port; the lower part of the town is home to beaches and yachting marinas including the charming Baie des Fourmis, as well as the main port – one of the most popular on the Côte d’Azur. On a rocky seafront promontory stands the Villa Kérylos, a Greek-style structure built by archaeologist Théodore Reinach in the early 1900s and now a monument historique.
This is a popular high-end resort for holidaymakers who come here to soak up the atmosphere as well as the sun, to enjoy shopping and eating in its exclusive boutiques and restaurants and for the annual fêtes (not least the film festival in nearby Cannes and jazz events in Nice). With good year-round weather too, rental properties in Beaulieu are in demand.
Don’t drag your feet though if you are looking for holiday apartments or studios, as these are in short supply and get snapped up very quickly.
Property styles here range from Belle Epoque villas to luxury apartments with landscaped gardens, infinity pools and jaw-dropping views over the bay. There’s no denying that it’s expensive to buy property here – at the moment if you have a spare €13.2 million to spend, there’s an off -plan seven-bedroom luxury villa for sale at the top end of the market. Even among the more affordable properties in Beaulieu – a one- or two-bedroom property, say, you won’t get a lot of change from €1 million. Mid-range, you can find prestige seafront apartments in period buildings and four-bedroom villas with swimming pool for between €1 million and €5 million.
On the plus side, Beaulieu is easy to get to from the UK by air, with Nice international airport just 11 km away. It’s even accessible by train with the TGV from Paris to Marseille taking as little as three hours and then a local train from there a further three hours.
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Lead photo credit : Wikimedia Commons
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