La Colombe d’Or is mythical: in Saint-Paul-de-Vence, this family inn has seen the whole legend of cinema parade through its walls decorated with Léger and Picasso.
Hospitality and curiosity
At the entrance to the village of Saint-Paul de Vence, opposite Place de Gaulle and its boules players, the famous Restaurant La Colombe d’Or has been welcoming celebrities and anonymous people from around the world for decades to delight the eye as much as the palate. . In 1920, Paul Roux with the help of his mother opened « Chez Robinson« , a café bar where the terrace turns into a dance floor on weekends. Very quickly, the inhabitants of the surroundings find themselves there. Paul then had the idea, with the complicity of his wife Baptistine, known as “Titine”, of turning the establishment into a 3-room inn, which would be called “La Colombe d’Or”. He becomes the friend of people passing through. His hospitality and his curiosity for art particularly attract artists, and many become loyal visitors.
A meeting place
The walls are filled with paintings sometimes exchanged for a few nights and a few meals. In 1940 during the war, the south became the free zone. Many personalities then settled on the coast and the Colombe d’Or became a meeting place. La Colombe d’Or is a family inn that welcomes film families. The English group, around Dirk Bogarde, had adopted the American Joseph Losey, who had returned to the hotel dead drunk with his Palme d’or for Le Messager. Also came Roger Moore, David Lean… and Albert Finney, who met Anouk Aimée in the swimming pool – he married her in 1970. Matisse comes in a limousine and, tired, takes tea there without getting up.
A lot of artists
Other visitors sign the guestbook: Braque, Léger, Miró, Chagall. Among others. Chickens with thyme perfume the inn. Dukes, countesses, billionaires, all meet at the Colombe d’or. Jacques Prévert and his gang invite themselves into the theatre, Carné shoots Les visitors d’un soir there, Arletty’s voice resounds. Soutine, Léger, Picasso come by from time to time. Each room has a story, from the terrace built with the stones of an old castle bought in ruins to the fireplace, marked with the imprints of the architects of the place.