23 september 2016
5 reasons to stay in Sanary-sur-Mer
We immediately love Sanary-sur-Mer for the smooth curve of its arched-shape harbor like a palm in the Mistral and the proud arrow of its church steeple overlooking the Mediterranean. The village and its orange walls capture the sun in alleys and distils the bewitching warmth throughout the year.
In this protective cocoon of famous German writers, ardent opponents of the totalitarian ideology had taken refuge before the war. From their prestigious presence, remains readable tributes on Plexiglas plates on the walls of their homes and in their writings, an immense tenderness for Sanary which was their happy refuge. Thomas Mann, Alma Mahler, Ludwig Marcuse, Stefan Zweig … between 1933 and 1944, the small fishing village became the secret capital of German literature which is found at the café, on the terrace of the Marine or the Nautique, facing the harbor.
The village has rediscovered and appreciated this aspect of its past that German tourists come every year to revisit. This is one of the curiosities of Sanary-sur-mer that, day after day, never ceases to surprise
The prettiest way to get in is to start with a visit to Portissol (In Provencal “pourtissou » : portal) that became one of the most beautiful beaches of the village. In the middle of the cove, a rock raises storm rolls made by a few surfers in search of sensations. The bottom of the creek is a natural sand beach framed by rocks, ocher on the west side, dark on the east side. This is where the whole world comes to stay, feet in water, in an old beach cottage turned into a renamed Restaurant O Petit Monde. This is so true: Port Issol is a cut microcosm of the world. The five rooms “out of category” of the Small World are always full because here everyone says, it is paradise. The Small World restaurant serves Italian and French cuisine in a trendy vintage-style décor. Just opposite, on the other side of the Bay, Kima Beach grabs the ledge and through the years without a wrinkle: a pier that withstands the onslaught of the waves, a narrow slab where one gate plancha on comfortable mattresses sipping rosé corner and three terraces under the pines overlooking the turquoise funds.
Where to go to the village? The avenue de Verdun then catching the chemin des Collines running on the edge of the cliff. In this highly sought after residential area, the pre-war villas decrepit by the spray are revamped retro-futuristic residences. Others remain in their juice as the “gray Moulin” standing on the precipice: the former home of Alma Mahler and her third husband the poet Franz Werfel. At the time, we had pierced the windows around its perimeter, giving it the appearance of an observatory or a lighthouse, surely an ideal piece to write. Past the chapel of Mercy walls hung with votive offerings in stone or painted on canvas by fishermen saved from the wreck, we pass the “Baobab”, the home of Jacques Cousteau directly overlooking the bay of Sanary snatched seaward: Jean-Michel Cousteau’s son still lives and grows activities related to the underwater world in the United States.
Like the German exiles, Jacques-Yves Cousteau came to Sanary to hide from the Nazis in order to continue the development of its respiratory deepwater he created with Philippe Tailliez, and they testèrent first once in the neighboring commune of Bandol. When the biopic of Cousteau played by Lambert Wilson out to the movies, we are curious if this crucial episode in his life and the history of Diving was filmed in Sanary!
The path of the Hill descends steeply to the village opening on a dream panorama. The small port deploys its Provencal facades lapped by the palm trees. In the northwest corner, the tower dominates the fourteenth century, draped in his welcoming setting that is the Hotel Tower built like a coat around its walls. Géraldine Chatelet-Mercier, the granddaughter of Lucien Mercier, its purchaser in the 30s, cultivates the memory of his grandfather who was the first to welcome the German exiles and kept the door open kitchen for the needy. Room 17 is an absolute must with its high ceilings and its own bathroom with bathtub has a view overlooking the harbor basin with the finest collection of fishing pointed to the French Riviera. This is the restaurant that is eaten bouillabaisse (order) or dentex baked in salt, one of the most delicious Mediterranean fish. Picasso had drawn on his slicks but works crept into the first book Golden disappeared when it was stolen during the war.
The taste for art and beautiful things is engraved in the walls of the village who grows their presence Galli theater, cultural heart sanaryen, leaving a multitude of festivals (Photomed, festival of Mediterranean photography, film Grand Large, festival cinema with professional masterclass, Just rose, the great tasting mass wines of Bandol and Provence -during three days, the hosts under see life in pink!). Among the many galleries in the village, Rue Lucien Guerard, behind the church focuses artist studios asking their easels on the pavement, and galleries including the Artists’ Workshop, beautiful municipal space dedicated to the guest artists in residence . The harbor is transformed readily into an exhibition space for artists often inspired by the colorful reflections sharp shells in the water.
Sanary surely has the most beautiful fleet of traditional fishing boats that the Mayor Ferdinand Bernhard helped save the disappearance of -in offering there fifteen years free ring at the port of Sanary to all fans that would restore them. A heritage initiative imitated by many villages of the Var coast to Saint Tropez … Here the sharp pace of village life through the “immediate shipments” from April to September: “pescadous” (owners trays polo sailor and boater) invite vacationers to share the joys of sailing the Latin sail. The Mayor has acquired the Calou, an old vessel built in 1965 by shipwright Jean-Baptiste Gabriel, a former figure of the corner well known to fishermen and boaters who first commanded his ship. Buller on the sharp, it’s out in search of a cove or creek, find the idyllic mooring, sunbathing on the deck, plunge into a multicolored rainbow wrasse bench then dried in the sun while the fish bites the bait!
From the smallest one as the three tables of La Gavroche, the mythical and unavoidable neighborhood bar where « authentic” Sanaryens find themselves … to the broader like the bar des Sports or La Marine, those of restaurants Le Provençal at Marc Ranucci, La Muscade under the arcades or the Ptite Fabrik on the harbor next to the Maison Flotte, another emblematic place of art Sanary, difficult to escape this tropism. Because to terrace in Sanary, “it has nothing to do” … with what we already know. “The air was full of original ideas, indiscretions and strife,” wrote Ludwig Marcuse in “My Twentieth Century”. Nothing has changed.
Rando Lab : sanary.com/randolab
Gourmanlyne, épicerie de terroir et art de la table www.gourmanlyne.com
Toiles de Michèle Troullier : firstname.lastname@example.org
Toiles de Guy Turpin : rue Lucien Guerard, gtplumart.free.fr
Claude Ferrito : sculpteur et architecte de pointus miniatures email@example.com
L’ampoule bleue, déco mode concept store: www.lampoulebleue.fr