The Tour de France reaches Marseille on July 22, the penultimate day of the competition, for the individual time trials. For those seeking a yellow jersey-style break of their own, Coquillade Village – an hour from Marseille – might have the answer with its Cycling in Provence Experience (from €835 per person), available until November 12.
Set in a 100-acre estate, Coquillade Village has 22 rooms and 41 suites overlooking the Luberon Valley and Mont Ventoux – the scene of some of the most gruelling climbs in the Tour de France – and as well as offering use of Bergamont mountain bikes and expert road bikes, has a state-of-the-art cycle centre with two new electric suspension bikes: the Lapierre Model Overvolt AM 500 27.5+ and the Thömus Model Lightrider E1 500W.
Owned by the man behind the BMC Racing Team, Andy Rihs, Coquillade is just 20 minutes from Ménerbes, where Peter Mayle lived and wrote. Its Cycling in Provence Experience comprises a two-night stay with bike rental for two days for two people, plus a half-day bike tour with a guide and Tour de France-style cycling outfits. The package also includes one dinner at Le Bistrot, a restaurant set in a lavender field, where chef Benjamin Higgins serves up rotisserie-cooked meats and poultry, as well as the catch of the day drizzled with local olive oil and herbs.
As well as this, the picture-postcard resort offers two pools, a superb spa and a wellness centre to soothe weary bodies after a day’s cycling.