48 Hours at Version Maquis Santa Manza
Somewhere on Corsica’s southernmost city, Bonifacio, there lies this pretty gem aka one of the islands designer hotels. Having passed the city, I was left somewhere at the outskirts with the GPS being at the end of the journey but the hotel not being around. Since there was just one main road leading towards Porto Vecchio I decided to take this one for a few kilometers or so. Turns out this intuition was right and after a few minutes - somewhere in the forest - there was a small sign indicating the hotel name. Having changed to that narrow road that seemed like it was just leading to that one hotel, I was impressed when I found out that there are actually pretty holiday homes as well as a few other upscale hotels along the way. It was in the middle of nowhere when a hidden gate with the sign Version Maquis appeared. A small bell was placed a bit ahead of the gate and once pushing it a friendly voice welcomed me to the Version Maquis and the gate opened.
Here is a kindly reminder that a 4x4 is necessary should you plan to drive to this hotel. The road from the gate to the front desk was one of the steepest I have ever seen and it was definitely not made to help yourself with the luggage. Luckily someone from the property arrived and helped us along with the luggage and accompanied us to the chic front desk on the first floor of the main building. Both rooms were already prepared and ready to be inspected. The friendly lady from the front desk showed us to the Junior Suites - situated on the lower side of the property with one being on the first floor offering a balcony and sea views and the second one being on the garden level with a green area in front of the terrace. I liked the sleek and minimalistic design of the hotel that somehow blended well into the landscape of the Maquis (the Corsican bushes where soldiers were hiding during difficult times - now famous for the fresh air and herbs growing in wild nature).
My junior suite offered a comfy king bed with two pillows per person, an armchair next to the terrace door, a writing desk with chair and television as well as an entree with wardrobe, minibar and Nespresso coffee machine along with water and snacks (at an additional charge). The bathroom was very spacious and offered a toilet, double vanities and a walk-in shower. In general the bathroom was very modern and clean, plus Version Maquis offered nicely smelling toiletries by Corsican brand Casanera. Also toothbrush and paste as well as shaving kits were provided which was lovely since the hotel sells itself as a four star property. All in all the room was quite fresh and for 300 euros per night quite alright considering it was high season and you are in Corsica where everything is a bit pricey.
Without going further, the highlight of the property is the infinity pool that makes the centre of Version Maquis. Perfect temperature, enough sun beds and towels at each time of the day plus spacious changing room - the pool area offered everything to spend a lazy day of summer holidays. Another great thing at this hotel is their breakfast concept. A very friendly woman is preparing the entire breakfast in an open show kitchen and all guests sit around a big table so all guests can have a chat and network a bit. While the buffet was on the small side, I appreciate the quality of the products. When the quality of the breakfast products is as good as at Version Maquis, there is absolutely no need for a vast buffet. Better prepare a small selection but with stuff that is tasty and excellent. So everything was tasting very good and even the eggs were freshly prepared by the lovely staff member. Orange juice was prepared with fresh oranges which is another sign of high quality. Generally I would have been paying 30 euros or so for the breakfast so being included in the rate makes the room rates a great deal.
While you absolutely need a car when staying there, it is just a ten minute’s ride into Bonifacio and guests have a chance to also dine in the sister property Version Maquis Citadelle where they have a restaurant for dinner service, too. In general I highly recommend to go to the old town of Bonifacio at night and have dinner there (Aria Nova felt like a very great restaurant). We also loved the proximity of the Version Maquis to the nearby pretty beaches. Since we had a car, we reached the Rondinara Bay within 15 minutes or so. Considering money for value, this place is absolutely great and has a perfect setting within a wonderful and untouched area with not too much mountains in the near so it doesn’t feel like home too much (haha). I can warmly recommend this four-star-plus hotel for a stay in Bonifacio, the very South of Corsica.
I was guest of the property, however all above written expresses my personal opinion and has not been influenced.