Normandy’s Flowered coast has much to offer in terms of fine hotels and recommendable restaurants. But the fit traveler also needs some exercise: hiking, biking, lengthy strolling and in this case a job on the beach.
I spent a few days on Normandy’s Flowered Coast investigating hotels and restaurants between Deauville and Cabourg. I stayed in three luxury hotels, visited three 3-stars and a 2-star, and tried four recommendable restaurants, two fine bakeries and a top-of-the-line delicatessen. I can’t complain about the work, but I can spend only so much time along the coast examining luxury hotels and eating well before I crave outdoor exercise.
So during the above visits I also enjoyed a run along the beach, a 2-hour hike into the hills inland, long walks in Deauville and Cabourg and a bike ride in horse country behind Deauville. I also stood on a street corner in Deauville for an hour marveling at the police presence, for, unbeknownst to me when taking the train from Paris, I arrived in town at the end of a tripartite summit involving French President Sarkozy, German Chancellor Merkel and Russian President Medvedev.
Deauville is the grand dame of resort towns along the Flowered Coast, which is why the three leaders were there. Two days after the summit I spent the night in the hotel that been requisitioned for the event, the Hotel Royal Barrière. The Royal and its sister the Normandy may sport five stars and the services to go with it, but the hotel with the best sea view on this part of the coast is a four-star in Cabourg: the Grand Hotel de Cabourg.
Reviews of the hotels and restaurants that I investigated over those three days can be found here. In the meantime, here are some photos taken from my room on an upper floor in the Grand Hotel:
looking northwest from the balcony:
looking northeast from the balcony:
and looking down and out to sea:
And here is a view from the beach in front of the hotel, about an hour from low tide facing east toward Deauville and Le Havre.
I ran that-a-way.
© 2010, Gary Lee Kraut