La Ponche hotel in Saint-Tropez, Var

A place loaded with history

In 1888, this ancient tavern overlooking the fishing harbour of the "la Ponche" area, had no prospective of a future... Purchased in 1938 by the parents of the present owner, It as become over the decades an absolute Tropezian "must", the smallest and most private 5 starred Hotel of Saint-Tropez.

Once a modest fishermen’s bar, favoured by Boris Vian and Simone de Beauvoir during the early fifties when the hotel only had three or four rooms, this large family home expanded and was embellished over the years to become a meeting place for writers such as Jacques Laurent and Michel Mohrt, painters like Picasso and Bernard Buffet, actresses including Juliette Greco  and Jeanne Moreau.

Françoise Sagan, fan of the hotel and of Saint-Tropez during more than 30 years, wrote to owner Simone Duckstein: “I so much love your house, your parents, the new rooms each time...”

These celebrities chose this address and its authentic and intimate setting for meeting up to enjoy special moments. The establishment has today preserved this heritage with rooms and suites being named after these illustrious occupants. Enjoy a stay in the Brigitte Bardot suite or the Georges Pompidou room with its super view on the citadel.

Loads of history here, with the sea and the La Ponche beach at your feet, but also a prime position in the heart of the old village of Saint-Tropez. Today La Ponche attracts great names such as Jack Nicholson as well as a number of famous French actors and film makers.

The Hotel La Ponche: some notable dates during more than seven decades that have shaped its history 

1938

Margot and Lucien Armando, the parents of the current owner, buy the little fishers' bistro known as "La Ponche" on the square known at the time as "Cavaillon".

1945 - 1950

Boris Vian, taken by the district, creates a nightclub: "Saint-Germain-des-Prés, La Ponche" in the cellar adjoining the La Ponche bar.

The war is over, jazz is in vogue, and jam sessions take place here every evening.

Boris Vian plays his trumpet in the company of black American saxophonist Don Byas.

Singer Juliette Gréco, poet Paul Eluard, philosopher Maurice Merleau-Ponty and actor Pierre Brasseur join the party!

June 1953

Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir live at the Hotel La Ponche, which now has four or five rooms.

1954 - 1955

Françoise Sagan makes the La Ponche bar her stamping ground.

The Hotel La Ponche becomes her go-to Saint-Tropez residence for almost 30 years, while more and more rooms are added.

1956

The film "Et Dieu Créa La Femme", starring Brigitte Bardot and directed by her husband at the time, Roger Vadim, is shot under the watchful eyes of Françoise Sagan.

Christian Marquand and Jean-Louis Trintignant stay at the Hotel La Ponche during the shooting.

Since 1960

The Hotel La Ponche becomes a notable establishment and favourite haunt for the Parisian jet set, as well as artists, writers and fashion designers of the time.

We offer our thanks to each of them for forging the history of the Hotel La Ponche, and in particular Juliette Gréco, Michel Galabru, Romy Schneider, writers and members of the Académie Française Jacques Laurent and Michel Mohrt, and not forgetting the legendary couple, Annabelle and Bernard Buffet, eternal friends of the Hotel La Ponche.

The cinematic fame of the Hotel La Ponche continues today, with more recent guests including Catherine Deneuve for the film "Princesse Marie", Gad Elmaleh and Audrey Tautou for the film "Priceless", and the film crew for "Des Gens Qui S’Embrassent" directed by Danièle Thompson and starring Monica Bellucci. Each artist, famous or not, is responsible for ensuring the Hotel La Ponche maintains its reputation as a favourite cinematic haunt even today.