A hop, skip and a jump from London to Nice, followed by a scenic drive along the famous Route Napoleon to the stunning five-star Terre Blanche Hotel; a sweet-smelling stop-off in Grasse; lunch at F. Scott Fitzgerald’s and a James Bond-esque speedboat transfer back to the airport. Yep, there are worse ways to spend 24 hours.
All courtesy of Ford Focus of course, who are back with a revamped classic. Now, I’m no Lewis Hamilton, but after a considerable amount of time in the driving seat (8 hours to be precise), I got to know the Cote d’Azur, and more importantly, the new Ford Focus, very well. The correct terminology may go amiss, but to put it in layman’s terms:
As we all know size truly does matter and this latest design is bigger (and better) than ever; generous head, leg and elbow room means everybody’s comfortable, especially for those, like me, who often find themselves winding the streets of the French Riviera. Ha ha! Perfect also for families needing the extra space; the back seats can be flattened to make room for luggage, shopping, wine… and there’s even adjustable flooring in the boot to allow more room (for more wine) or used completely separately as a hidden compartment for… you guessed it!
I drove the luxurious Vignale model in ‘diffused silver’, that’s taupe to me and you. Ultra-smart and sophisticated with the added touch of the exclusive Vignale grille on the front. The interior is equally as elegant; soft leather with contrasting stitching throughout and on the steering wheel for a slick, smooth finish. Do I sound like an expert yet?
As the all new Ford Focus has been redesigned from scratch, everything has been completely streamlined. Gone are the unnecessary and overcrowded buttons to make room for- nope, not wine- a much appreciated wireless charging pad and my favourite, the HUD or ‘head-up display’ which cleverly projects information such as speed and road signs just above the dashboard so there’s no need to take your eyes off the road. Very smart indeed.
I stopped at Maison Galimard, France’s oldest parfumerie where I, along with the help of some of the world’s best noses, created my very own signature scent.
Perfume Creation workshops start from 53.00 euros.
I dined at the famous Hotel Belles Rives perched on the edge of the Mediterranean and once home to F. Scott Fitzgerald, where he penned ‘Tender is the Night’ and the very place that provided inspiration for ‘The Great Gatsby’.
I was a guest at the stunning Terre Blanche Hotel, hidden in a picturesque corner of Provence and just a 45-minute drive from Nice International Airport.
Prices start from 269.60 euros per night.