Philippe Starck Designs Villa W Hotel in Saint-Tropez
An icon in the world of architecture and design, Philippe Starck has used warm tones and modernist references in his renovation of Villa W, a boutique wellness hotel on the coast of Saint-Tropez.
The villa was created as a little sister to the existing Starck-designed Lily of the Valley hotel which is located nearby. Accommodating up to six guests, Villa W is a fitness and wellness lodging. Perfect for those looking for an escape from the mundane to focus on improved health.
Location Location Location
Villa W is set within an extraordinarily privileged location in Saint-Tropez by the coast. The hotel majestically overlooks the charming Mediterranean. This villa was originally built by local architect Jean Nielly in the 1960s. Now in the amazing hands of Philippe Starck, it underwent a magical renovation that accentuates, most delightfully, its earliest architectural features.
The 1,559-square-metre villa, which is situated on the southwestern corner of the peninsula in the French Riviera town, was designed as “a romantic hideaway”. Here guests are welcomed in, to relax as well as work on their fitness and health.
“We’ve all dreamed of a little cabin, chalet or fisherman’s hut by the sea,” Philippe Starck said. “We don’t have to dream anymore, because we’ve made that dream a reality – a romantic hideaway nestled in a pine forest that looks down onto the Mediterranean at La Croix-Valmer.”
Private and Enticing
Set over two floors, the boutique hotel has three double rooms and can cater to up to six guests at a time. Each bedroom has its own private terrace. Naturally, the focus here is on the views. The rooms boast amazing views of the surrounding lush landscape and the Mediterranean sea.
During the renovation process, Starck decided to focus on the original architectural features of the villa. There is beauty in rediscovering and celebrating things from the past.
Made from vast sheets of glass, concrete and steel, the villa already had unparalleled views of its surroundings. In a bid to celebrate this, Starck focused on drawing attention to the length of the villa. He, therefore, added arbours made from chestnut wood along its long, south-facing glass facade.
Large French doors set in aluminium frames allow plenty of natural light inside. This subsequently brightens up the interiors and merges with the exterior. Here, a decked terrace wraps around the edges of the building. Furthermore, the exterior boasts a private 17-metre-long pool.
“Villa W boasts views that have remained unchanged for hundreds of years,” said owner of Lily of the Valley Lucie Weill. “So, when we were designing it, we felt it was essential to keep this unique, panoramic view of the Mediterranean.”
“That’s why we put so much importance on the length of the villa so that guests would be able to see the sea from every room. The effect is quite something: instead of feeling like a building nestled against the hillside, Villa W feels more like a boat moored on the coast.”