Corsica historically gained a foothold in the Mediterranean tourist circuit as an extension of the Riviera. As many of you know, this kind of region is known for attracting glitzy holiday goers and often tends to lead to nondescript accommodation sites springing up in droves. But Corsica, an island which has preserved a strong sense of identity throughout its history, offers us today two very special family-run “non-hotels” that aim to give their guests a truly memorable holiday experience.
Castel Brando Hotel – Located in Erbalunga, a charming little fishing village in the Cap Corse, this 19th century mansion was originally built in 1854 by Corsican immigrants returning from Latin America, much like many other patrician constructed by numerous Corsican families at the time, who emigrated before returning back home once they had massed considerable wealth abroad. Today, the abode has managed to preserve its original architectural charm and established itself as a historical monument by keeping the original wall prints, furniture and 19th century aesthetics. It also boasts a pool and spa. This mansion is so inspiring that it could be the perfect place to write a symphony!
Les Mouettes Hotel – At about one kilometre of Ajaccio stands this 19thcentury house which was turned into the ‘Hostellerie de la Grande Bleue’ beach residence around 1920. It hosted English travellers during the winter months during its youth, rhyming well with Ajaccio’s ‘English’ neighbourhood which came to be at the beginning of the 20th century. In 1954, the residence was officially turned into a hotel and has hosted famous icons throughout the years such as Maria Callas, Eric Cantona and Segolene Royal. Now a four star hotel, the establishment embraces the Riviera spirit whilst maintaining its original charms. It prides itself as being not so much a hotel but a beautiful summer home with character. Definitely the perfect place for a short break at only 3 hours from London.
Ultimately, what these two hotels have in common is not only a mission to offer guests a luxurious stay, at an affordable price, that is both special and exceptional, but also the opportunity to stay in a family-run hotel that embraces its past as much as its future. Staff want to see their guests grow old and share memories with them that they can create on their stunning sites. The Pieri hotels want to be seen as a form of extension of their guests’ living rooms.
If you’d like to see the whole of our trip to Corsica, take a look at our photo gallery.