A review of the Hotel la Résidence du Vieux-Port in Marseille, France on the trip Perusing the Persian Gulf.
- Fantastic views of Marseille’s port.
- Fresh and simple Mediterranean dining.
- Fun and lively retro décor.
- Diverse function rooms for formal and casual events.
The city of Marseille is one of the most historic cities in Europe and has become a beautiful blend of the old and the new. Only a few ancient buildings survived the Second World War but out of ruins came the post-war modernist architecture perfectly embodied by the Hotel la Résidence du Vieux-Port. The hotel sits on the south bank of the Old Port, hence the name Vieux-Port. The latest renovations were finished in 2010 which have brought the glamour and simplicity of the 1950’s into the 21st century.
The Hotel la Résidence du Vieux-Port is only a 23 minute drive from the Marseille airport and public transit only steps away from the lobby which makes it an ideal home base for site seeing around the city.
The views from the room are fantastic and a perfect way to greet the morning. Nearly every room looks over the port and the beautiful old basilica Notre Dame de La Garde. While the view frames some of the history of Marseille, the décor reflects the modernization of the city. Geometrical shapes fill the room through furniture, art pieces and light fixtures which give an almost space-age feel that was typical of post-modern design. I also liked the pop of color throughout the room from the red chairs to the yellow door. Next to the window was a nice long desk to spread out with matching floating shelves for all the tour books I brought along. There was even a La Residence du Vieux Port straw hat for guests. On the other side of the room is the bathroom which is covered in trendy subway tile and a black vanity with his and hers sinks.
Much like the rest of the hotel which is littered with technology, each room contains an iPod docking system, and LCD television with satellite, top of the line toiletries, a mini bar, air conditioning and free wireless internet which is also available throughout the rest of the hotel.
The 50 rooms and suites are split into basic Classique Rooms, Superior and Club Rooms but the best views can be seen from the and the Suite Notre Dame which are almost opposites in styling. The Ciel Suite is much like the other rooms in the Hotel la Résidence du Vieux-Port but much larger with its own living room and private terrace on the top floor. The Suite Notre Dame on the other hand emulates the more traditional luxury of the 18th century with solid wood furniture and velvet cushions in burgundies and cornflower blues. The bathroom opts for a claw-footed porcelain tub instead of a walk-in shower all finished in white tile and silver fixtures.
Downstairs sits Restaurant le Relais 50 brings the simplicity and elegance of the hotel to cuisine. The dining room was inspired by the fashionable 1950’s Parisian bistros; it’s filled with eye-catching hues of red, orange and blue matching the colors of the sunset which guests can enjoy from the terrace. The menu changes with every season to support the restaurant’s devotion to sustainability and using only the freshest ingredients in each Mediterranean style dish. Delightful red and white wines complete the meal from local world-renowned wineries.
There are two function rooms at the Hotel la Résidence du Vieux-Port; Le Club is more suitable for conferences while Bibliothèque is perfect for casual cocktail parties and luncheons. It is playful and colorful with stained glass, frescos on the walls, and plush furniture in vibrant colors. It can be reserved for special function but most of the time the room is open to all guests as a place to enjoy breakfast or just relax. Le Club brings back classical French styling of the 18th century with high ceilings, clear floor to ceiling windows and parquet flooring. There’s also a lovely balcony overlooking the Old Port which is a perfect spot for a catered lunch during a conference.
The hotel also has a small workout room available for guests.
Service at the hotel was excellent. The receptionist was especially helpful with directions on where to park and even offering complementary museum tickets. Throughout the stay, the staff were warm and friendly.
Hotel la Résidence du Vieux-Port is a no-nonsense modern hotel set in a traditional building. It offers luxurious amenities for travelers seeking a place to call home while exploring the city and especially to come back to at the end of the day for a glass of wine on a private terrace. With a great location and helpful service, I highly recommend this hotel for any travelers exploring Marseille.
Hotel la Résidence du Vieux-Port
Address: 18, Quai du Port, 13002 Marseille, France
Telephone: +33 (0)4 91 91 91 22