With the opening of the new direct line to Aix-en-Provence, visiting south of France from London has never been so easy. Discover it with our France DMC! Since May 4th every Saturday you can take the Eurostar train at St-Pancras station and over 6 hours later you’re ready to discover the sunny and lively region which hosts this year the European capital of culture Marseille, only 16 miles from Aix-en-Provence.
According to the New York Times, Marseille is the second on 46 places to go in 2013, so this year is the best moment to meet a face of France you’ve never seen before. As capital of Culture, lots of exhibitions, concerts, festivals and events of any type will take place in Marseille so you can be sure the city will never stop astonish you with new concepts and artists to discover and rediscover.
MUCEM: Musée de Civilisations de l’Europe et de la Méditerranée. A moat surrounded avant-garde block covered in a beautiful concrete lace. Opened in June 2013, it is the city’s first designated “national museum”, built by French architect Rudi Riciotti.
OMBRIERE: A beautiful sunshade for the hot summer and an appreciated refuge from the rain in winter, built by Norman Foster in 2013, on the Old Harbour. Its high ceiling of polished steel reflects astonished passers-by, upside-down boats and undulating water.
Meet the Provencal culture enjoying an iced glass of Pastis (the anis-flavoured local liqueur) while relaxing in a sunny terrace or playing pétanque, the very popular boules game from south of France. The warm city offers a multicultural and dynamic background as well as an exceptional landscape all around with turquoise blue sea and mountains coexisting, well known in the Mediterranean area as the “Calanques”. You can visit it by boat on special itinerary cruises from 1h45 to 3hours depending on how much of the Mediterranean coast you want to see.
Visit also the lively central Old Port, freshly renew for pedestrian, that gives a touch of modern to the oldest city of France which architecture testifies of 2,600 years of history. From there you can take a 20min boat to visit the isle of the famous Castle of If built in 1519 by Francois 1st . This former jail inspired famous Alexandre Dumas’ stories such as the Count of Monte-Cristo or the Man in the Iron Mask.
If you consider a meeting in Marseille, several possibilities are available. The Pharo is a former Imperial residence situated in a nice public park on the seaside, in the heart of the city. It hosts a 500m² restaurant and a 900-seat auditorium which receives up to 60,000 people a year. At the Pharo Palace, you’ll be sure to give your conferences and seminars an historical dimension!
Do you need something bigger? Marseille’s Parc Chanot and its 15 000 m² area Convention Centre will suit you perfectly. The centre possesses 15 conference and committee rooms, as well as 2 auditoria that can respectively host up to 400 and 1,200 persons. The modern and luminous place is also situated in the very centre of the city, so it’s well connected with buses, undergrounds and possesses a large parking area.
Our DMC can advise you two very well located hotels in the Old Port, both 30 to 40min from the airport. The Intercontinental Hotel Dieu is a 5* set in a 18th century building which disposes of 194 rooms, 22 suites, 2 restaurants and beauty services like Spa and Fitness as well as a very nice and spacious terrace. It’s situated 20min walking distance from the train and coaches station, in the right wing of the Old port.
Radison Blu hotel is a 4* hotel situated in the port’s left wing, about 20min from the stations too. It has 189 guests rooms, 6 suites and junior suites, a fitness room and an outdoor swimming pool area.
For more details about Marseille, availability and prices, please contact us and we make sure that you receive a proposal within 48 hours.