rovence is one of the most beautiful parts of France. From June till early July, you can enjoy the lavender roads in the Luberon region. More than 1000km of scented and colorful roads to explore as the seasons go by. Surrounded by the purple fields, a stop is mandatory to take lovely shots of those magical landscapes and soak up the smell of local, comforting lavender.
In Luberon, Alps of Haute-Provence, there is a small village called Chateau-Arnoux, where I stopped by La Bonne Étape, a 4-star hotel with rooms, suites, swimming pool, a Michelin-starred restaurant, and the Gaby Bistrot. This place is a peaceful haven, a Relais & Château, owned by the same family since 1971. Jany Gleize, the owner of the family business, is also the Chef, awarded a Michelin Star in 1964, managing the hotel and two restaurants assisted by his daughter.
The place is magical by its quietness, the atmosphere of a big provencal family house built with stones makes you immediately feel home, with a beautiful garden next to the pool. In addition to using local products for his kitchen, the Chef produces his fruits, veggies, and herbs in the garden that you can visit and enjoy at the restaurant. All the ingredients are well-combined to make you live an unforgettable experience.
The Michelin-starred restaurant La Bonne Étape offers creative dishes elaborated by Chef Jany Gleize and his team, but last and not least by his daughter. He passed on his passion and love of cooking to his daughter, Jane Gleize, a young woman that knows what she wants and is driven by her love for cooking and creating. They elaborated three menus to please the largest audience, with a nice touch dedicated to vegetarians. Every dish looks fantastic, and the taste is absolutely amazing. It is a generous and familial cuisine they are proud to share, and Chef Jany Gleize illustrated his main recipes in a book for the delight of its visitors. Don’t forget to ask the Chef for dedication; after passing by La Bonne Étape, you will also have the pleasure of reproducing your favorite dishes at home! Share on social media your masterpieces with Chef Jany Gleize, @janygleize, and La Bonne Étape, @la_bonne_etape.
The lunch is yet over, and you would love lounging by the swimming pool, under the hot sun of Haute-Provence, with the song of cicadas as a bonus. A complete change of scenery, and even more when you’ll discover the hotel is offering memorable escapes onboard a 2cv in partnership with Les Belles Lurettes. Rent your 2cv for a half or a full day, traveling the fields and exploring the surroundings. You will enjoy getting lost between lavender fields, olive trees, and vineyards. On the road, stop by the Moulin Fortuné Arizzi, teaming up with La Bonne Étape. The Moulin Fortuné Arizzi Olive Oil is controlled annually by official French organizations and has consistently received the label “extra virgin olive oil.” They also offer visits and tasting on the property. Cultural side, you’ll value in Château-Arnoux, the castle that was built from 1510 to 1515 by the powerful and dynamic Pierre de Glandeves, lord of the place. Its spiral staircase of 84 steps, all of one stone, has been classified “Historical Monument” since 1969. In addition to this staircase, the City Council Hall, with its magnificent French ceiling, is fascinating to heritage lovers. And its park is just as remarkable.
A great blend of nature, fun, culture, and excellent local cuisine for a perfect detox with your daily routine.
Back at La Bonne Étape, enjoy your charming provencal rooms. Rooms are spacious and cozy, with a lovely balcony where you can enjoy breakfast with a view of the hills and the thick surrounding vegetation.