Look up from your screen and look out at Cannes’ hidden gem
Cannes: famous for film festivals, glitz, glamour, bright lights and busy beaches. Likely to be one of the first places you think of jetting off to if you want to spend the summer lounging in the limelight, sipping on Long Island Ice Teas, laughing raucously with your glamorous girlfriends, it’s less likely to be top of your list for a relaxing, peaceful getaway. Until now.
Nestled just five miles away from Cannes lies Le Mas Candille, a boutique hotel that boasts an infinity pool, a Michelin starred restaurant and a multi-award winning Shiseido Spa. The first to admit we spend far too much of our lives glued to a screen – emails on our laptops, Twitter on our phones, blogs on our iPads – the YCB team recently decided it was time to switch off. Not just switch off mentally, but literally switch off our devices and look up at the world for a few days. So that’s just what we did; we packed our bags and headed to the French village of Mougins to look out on stunning garden views, take in a breath of fresh air, and bask in absolute tranquility.
Relaxation of the mind is easier to achieve if the body’s relaxed too – or at least that’s what we told ourselves as we made our first stop the Shiseido Spa! Located in the heart of a peaceful Japanese-style garden and set against the panoramic view of Provencal landscape, the hotel spa is built around a Zen philosophy. Developed exclusively by Shiseido, their ‘Qi’ method stimulates both mind and body energy, encouraging relaxation at the deepest levels. By the end of our treatments we had forgotten the words ‘inbox’, ‘meeting’ and ‘to-do list’ even existed, but just in case they tried to make a cheeky comeback, we thought it best to take a dip in the heated hydrotherapy pool afterwards too.
Having spent the afternoon luxuriating in the heavenly gardens, soaking up the soothing scents of lavender and curling up with that book we’ve been meaning to read for years, it was time for dinner. This wouldn’t be just any dinner though; this would be a Michelin starred meal created with ingredients hand picked at the Cannes Forville Market just that morning by hotel head chef David Chauvac. As a Cannes native David has a typically Provencal cooking style, creating light and innovate Mediterranean dishes with Asian influences. Needless to say, David’s dishes fueled conversation long in to the night, a refreshing change from only speaking in emojis via Whatsapp.
Wanting to channel our inner French-woman, leisurely swanning around looking ultra-chic and smelling divine, the next morning was spent in the world’s perfume capital, Grasse. At the Historic Museum of Fragonard we discovered the history of the perfume, and were even able to create our own signature scents! Back at Le Mas Candille, there was just enough time to unwind with a spot of yoga out on the alfresco terrace before we had to catch our flight back to the digital world awaiting us in London.
It might not be practical during the working day, but now that we’re back we’re still making a conscious effort to switch our phones off every now and again, and in those stolen moments we’re transported back to the serenity of Le Mas Candille.