St Tropez: An insider’s guide to luxury
St Tropez is hands-down one of the most glamorous places on the planet, with its summertime fleet of superyachts jostling in the picturesque port, the famed strip of beach clubs at Pampelonne, and the ritzy haute couture shingles hung along the medieval lanes.
When the sun sets, the party really starts, with a VIP crowd dining on seafront terraces and dancing in A-list nightclubs, Champagne spraying through the air.
St Tropez may be the home of luxury, but if you’re haven’t visited before, how do you know the premium experiences? To help, we’ve curated an insider’s guide to the finest luxury experiences to be indulged in while in St Tropez.
And remember, you don’t need to be staying in St Tropez to make the most of the experience; charter helicopter flights operate all down the French Riviera, so you can beach club by day before alighting onto your St Tropez to Monaco helicopter by night!
Hit the Beach in St Tropez Style
The sleepy fishing village of St Tropez shot to fame in 1955 when a bikini-clad Brigitte Bardot cavorted on Pampelonne Beach in the risqué film, …And God Created Woman, and this stunning stretch of sand continues to attract a Hollywood clientele over 50 years later.
While the beach itself is superb, the real glamour appeal lies in the iconic beach clubs that line the sand, including the one that began it all, Club 55. This sophisticated, beachy haven is ground zero of the luxury scene of St Tropez, although other swanky beach clubs have joined the fray, including the cool new kid on the block, Bagatelle Beach, and the all-white poolside club, Nikki Beach, where heiresses and race car drivers dance on tables and Champagne sprays in the summer sun.
Shop the Laneways, Spot the Celebrities
Back in St Tropez proper, a glamorous afternoon is spent shopping in luxury boutiques set along flowery cobbled backstreets. Stroll the ‘luxury triangle’ between Place des Lices, Rue Gambetta, and Rue Général Allard, stopping along the way at flagship stores of some of the swishest brands on the planet, including Louis Vuitton, Hermes and Dior. In high summer you’re bound to see some Hollywood stars shopping in their ‘disguises’ of oversized dark glasses – but the bodyguards always give them away!
Don’t forget to stock up on some of St Tropez’ local boutique offerings, including swimmers from Vilebrequin or Kiwi Saint-Tropez, a pair of Tropezienne sandals from Rondini, or funky, colourful jewellery from Gas Bijoux.
And remember, if you don’t find what you’re looking for in St Tropez, a St Tropez to Monaco Helicopter transfer will drop you in Monte Carlo in minutes, where the glittering Carré d’Or shopping quarter offers every luxury fashion brand under the sun. You can even channel your inner James Bond with a game of blackjack at the infamous and opulent Casino de Monte-Carlo, before heading back to St Tropez on your helicopter.
Bliss out at the Spa
What better way to wind down from a day of beach and shopping heaven, than with a pampering treatment at a St Tropez spa?
All the best luxury hotels of St Tropez have spa treatments, but a few really stand out. The Clarins Spa at Hôtel de Paris offers an all-white haven, and the Sisley Spa at Hôtel Byblos absolutely stuns with its ornate surroundings, including a room literally taken stone by stone from a Beirut palace. For a spa experience you’ll never forget, head out of town to the nearby village of Ramatuelle, where the La Réserve Ramatuelle Spa is a 7000sqm temple to beauty set on a hilltop with jaw-dropping views over the Gulf of St Tropez.
Sunset Drinks in St Tropez
You’ve spent your day swimming and eating, shopping and being pampered. It’s time to party. The party generally gets started in the late afternoon at the Pampelonne Beach clubs, with DJ’s playing to a beautiful crowd. When it’s time to head back to town, dress up and head to Bar du Port, where everyone that’s anyone gathers before heading to dinner. There’s also the option of the rooftop pool lounge at Hôtel de Paris, to watch the sunset turn the Mediterranean pink.
Dinner at La Vague d’Or
As for dinner, the best table in town is the gastronomic powerhouse that is La Vague d’Or. A three Michelin star restaurant in the pine-shaded grounds of La Résidence de La Pinède, we recommend you take a table on the terrace and settle in for an astonishing dining experience you’ll never forget. Highlights from the high gastronomy menu include blue lobsters, truffles, guinea fowl and foie gras.
Let the Champagne Flow
Dress up to the nines and join the queues for St Tropez’ infamous nightclubs, Les Caves du Roy and the VIP Room. These hedonistic nightclubs are jam-packed with billionaires and celebrities in high summer, and some of the hottest DJ’s on earth spin the decks in front of a heaving, Champagne-spraying dance floor.
If you’re lucky, you’ll see one of the legendary ‘Champagne wars’, where wealthy patrons (think Arabian princes) try to one-up each other by buying the most bottles of vintage Champagne, each purchase narrated by the DJ to a roaring crowd.
There is nowhere quite like St Tropez.
Arrive in style by helicopter
There are only two ways to arrive in St Tropez in style. One is by superyacht, the other is by helicopter. If you don’t have a superyacht to hand during your visit to St Tropez, a St Tropez helicopter charter is all too easy to organise. Not only will you turn heads when you arrive and avoid the Riviera traffic, but you’ll enjoy breath-taking aerial views of the French Riviera as you fly.