What better way to pass an evening than in the superb surroundings of the Mas de Pierre with some fabulous sounds provided by Philippe Harari.

I spent an exceptional night at Le Mas de Pierre near St. Paul de Vence. A great place in an even greater location, so good it impressed a city person like me. I went there to see my great friend Philippe Harari and his delightful partner, Bobbi Rae, in action – they have a residency there Thursdays and Saturdays. Amongst the musicians they mix and match, I was fortunate enough to meet the enchanting Natalia Desire, a violinist from the Ukraine.

So what’s the big deal you ask, and rightly so. The big deal is that Philippe has a repetoire and range which is truly amazing from opera to country, Sinatra to Creedence Clearwater and beyond. This ex-Wall Street guy really makes the evening go, he finds out what the audience wants, then delivers it and some. You ask yourself why he bothered with Wall Street at all. The desperately cute Bobbi hails from Florida, she has a lot of talents, playing Hamlet is one of them – go figure. When you meet her, ask her about it!

Let’s not kid ourselves that Le Mas is cheap – that it is not, you find me a Relais & Châteaux that is, I will book tomorrow. The food is excellent, well prepared and tastes divine. The atmosphere for such a grand place is not stuffy, you feel welcome, there is always a smile. What you do get for free is the superb talent that is Philippe Harari in this fantastic setting. Wander around the grounds and the public rooms of the hotel too, a very agreeable experience.

Can you dance? Absolutely. Will you be on your own while you grace the floor with your moves? Absolutely not! Everyone is very chilled. Hmm, I hear you asking yourself, did he dance? The truth is that I did – so there! I may need to check the dictionary definition of what constitutes dancing, so hold the thought.

Important point – there is plenty of parking! Go enjoy!


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All photographs © Mike Colquhoun

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