Friday, October 12, 2018

Brand New in Arles: A Hotel for Art Lovers

Maja Hoffmann and her company Les Maisons d’Arles opened their newest property in Arles today, a 35-room, four-story hotel called L’Arlatan

Born in Switzerland and raised in the Camargue, not far from Arles, Hoffmann is a philanthropist, arts patron and founder of the LUMA Foundation and LUMA Arles. They’re the ones building the 56-meter (183-foot) Frank Gehry-designed tower in Arles, set for completion in 2020. The tower is the centerpiece of the Parc des Ateliers, a 20-acre experimental cultural center hosting a wide range of art exhibits and events on the site of a former train maintenance depot, a short walk from the city center. Among the shows currently on view (until January 6): Gilbert & George: The Great Exhibition (1971-2016). For other current and upcoming shows, click here

In addition to the Arles hotel Le Cloître and the cafe next door called L’Epicerie, Hoffman owns the Michelin one-star restaurant La Chassagnette in the Camargue. 

Hoffmann’s newest project blends ultra-contemporary, original art with traditional materials and ancient architecture. Parts of the new hotel date to the 12th century and are listed as a Monument Historique. At one time, this was considered the city’s most lavish hôtel particulier (grand townhouse) and it’s built on an ancient Roman basilica, the remains of which are still visible.

Nestled in the historic center of Arles, L’Arlatan is just a few minutes from the Place du Forum, the Church of Saint Trophime and the UNESCO-listed Roman amphitheatre (Les Arènes) and Baths of Constantine.  It’s five minutes from the Rhône River and a 12-minute walk to the Gare d'Arles train station.

Rooms and suites all have antique furniture, satellite TV and free WiFi. Some feature wood-beamed ceilings, exposed stone walls and/or private terraces.
The hotel owes its striking visual appeal to the vision of Cuban-born American artist Jorge Pardo, who turned walls, doors and guestrooms into unique works of art. The almost two million glazed mosaic tiles used for the renovation (in 11 shapes and 18 colors) were all handmade in the Yucatan.  Pardo’s paintings appear on the hotel’s 100-plus doors. For more about the hotel’s art, design and history, see the recent stories in Wallpaper Magazine and the New York Times.
The hotel restaurant, also called L’Arlatan, features “simple and seasonal” Provençal and Mediterranean cuisine. The menu is being created in conjunction with the team at La Chassagnette. 

L’Arlatan has a bar, a terrace and an outdoor pool. Breakfast and parking are available.

Hotel L’Arlatan
26, rue du Sauvage
13200 Arles

Photos: The design and decor of Hotel L'Arlatan was inspired by Provence, the Camargue, Mexico and even Japan. Owner Maja Hoffmann says she hopes the hotel will attract artists of all types...and the travelers who love them. At the bottom, the Frank Gehry-designed tower currently rising in Arles...centerpiece of the Parc des Ateliers, a vast "experimental cultural center" celebrating all types of art including photography, publishing and multi-media.


  1. Thanks for this, Julie. Our women's tour stayed in Le Cloitre for six nights last month and absolutely loved the hotel, stairs and all!

  2. I'll definitely have to check out the restaurant because I love La Chassagnette. Thanks for the tip!