It's somewhat difficult to review the Ambassadeur; it is currently undergoing renovations for its transformation into a Marriott Renaissance hotel, to be completed sometime in 2012. The makeover couldn't come at a better time though as some aspects of the hotel are beginning to look somewhat tired. However, with spacious common areas, a good location and newly renovated rooms, the hotel is more than halfway there.
In the heart of Antibes Juan-les-Pins, the Ambassadeur is a short walk to the beach and only 500m to the Juan-les-Pins train station. It is right next door to the brand new convention centre that is currently being built (opening scheduled in 2013). Nice Côte d'Azur Airport is 9.5 miles from the hotel.
The Ambassadeur will undergo major renovations beginning September 2011. Certain parts of the hotel have already been renovated.
Construction on the Antibes' new convention centre (next door) has begun and will continue well into 2012.
Built in 1990, the four-star Ambassadeur consists of 221 rooms and several facilities including a bar, restaurant, conference facilities, two pools and a fitness centre. The sheer size of the hotel alone is unusual for Antibes Juan-les-Pins as most hotels are smaller 'charm hotels' or boutique affairs. Upon entering the hotel, the spacious lobby is impressive for its glass atrium that allows natural light to fill the room. At ground level, a wide mezzanine overlooks a central interior courtyard with a cluster of palm trees reflected in the nearby mirrored walls. A panoramic elevator transports guests to all six floors of accommodation, while in the hotel corridors, the carpets spell the lyrics to the Louis Armstrong classic 'What a Wonderful World,' reiterating Antibes' jazz-loving roots.
Below the lobby's mezzanine, guests will find a small fitness room equipped with Technogym gear, a small but heated indoor pool inside a mock cave with rock walls and ceiling, and the business facilities including a whopping 18 meeting rooms. Towards the rear of the building is where the hotel's bar and restaurant are located, the latter serves meals on the outdoor terrace during the summer. A few steps away is the large outdoor pool in the form of a flower (or four leaf clover depending on your imagination!), with a palm tree stood at each corner.
There are 221 rooms at the Ambassadeur; 25 junior suites and the remainder standard rooms with city views or superior rooms with pool views. Only the suites on the 5th and 6th floors enjoy sea views. Apart from the 40m² junior suites, all rooms are of the same size and decoration, the only aspect that changes is the view from the rooms' balconies.
The rooms are decorated quite simply, with parquet floors and furnishings in chocolate beige tones with lime green or citrus orange accents. The rooms are clean and uncluttered, with sleek lines to create a very contemporary look. However the rooms risk appearing somewhat cold or plain due to their far from fussy design. With modern fittings (mounted flat screen television, etc.) accommodation is more than comfortable. Glass sliding doors provide access to the balcony, all of which have teak deck floors.
Meanwhile, room service is available from 7:00am until 11:00pm and WIFI is charged at 20 euros (£17.65) for five days.
Le Cézanne, the restaurant at the Ambassadeur serves standard French fare. Offering three services daily (buffet breakfast, plus lunch and dinner à la carte), the restaurant also serves meals on the outdoor terrace in warm weather. Main dishes are priced between 14 and 24 euros (£12.35 - £21.15). Large windows overlook the terrace but the restaurant's interior is minimally decorated... In summer, a second restaurant is open by the pool; Le Grill Les Palmiers serves lunch only, while an all-day snack menu is available between 9:00am and 9:00pm in high season only. The bar Le Lautrec, adjacent to the restaurant is open daily from 5:00pm with a very classic, almost business-like atmosphere.
The Ambassadeur claims two private beaches; La Jetée and a second going by the same name as the hotel. Both sandy beaches are only a five minute stroll from the hotel, the Ambassadeur being the closest, found on the other side of the Gould Pine Grove. La Jetée is a little further along the promenade and features a decked jetty covered in sun loungers as well as a restaurant at the water's edge. The private beaches are open from April until October and in the evenings from May until September. In typical French Riviera style, both beaches require payment (around 19 euros or £16.75) to hire a sun lounger, mattress and parasol.
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