, 17, Avenue George V, Dinard, Brittany.
Hotel Castelbrac is a 5 star hotel perched on the rocky shore at Dinard, facing across towards St Malo. Unquestionably, this is the best position in Dinard. There are terraces and a garden where the hotel cascades down towards the sea, and a unique swimming pool that takes full advantage of the shoreside location. Nestled just above the pool is a small gym with cycling and cardio machines.
The Salon Charcot is a large lounge overlooking the sea (as does just about everything at Castelbrac) that celebrates the antarctic expedition of Jean-Baptiste Charcot in 1904. This was the very location from which the expedition was planned, but now it is a place to relax, take in the view and enjoy afternoon tea. That's right despite the usual French preference for coffee, the Charcot room offers a large variety of teas from all the great tea-growing regions.
The restaurant at this Castelbrac is called "Pourquoi Pas" (Why not!). Why not indeed, because this is a restaurant with both a fabulous view and a dedicated chef who has created a local and simple cuisine with a marine spirit. "Simplicity", but with excellence in the quality of the ingredients, local sourcing and most importantly, taste. Alongside the restaurant is the Aquarium Bar, created from the national aquarium that was on this site for over 60 years. Fabulously decorated, it offers an extensive cocktail and wine menu, along with delicious appetisers.
The 25 rooms and suites are all oriented toward the sea. Although they are each individual, there is a pleasing theme throughout, with gothic arch shapes and touches of art deco all brought together into something that is thoroughly 21st century. Rooms range from 20m2 for the Superior Rooms up to 50m2 for the Prestige Suite. They all have kingsize or twin beds, air-conditioning, a courtesy tray and Nespresso machine, safe, minibar and much more besides.
The Spa Suite by Thémaé offers body treatments and facials with Thémaé products that are tea and spring water based. In addition, Castelbrac has it's own 12m speedboat which guests may hire to explore the Côte d'Emeraude and surrounding islands (available during spring and summer only). The skipper can also offer guided walks to discover the forts of Vauban around Saint Malo, as well as the entire coast between Cape Fréhel and Mont-Saint-Michel.