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Marseille Hotels

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hôtel Alizé Vieux Port
35 Quai des Belges
Marseille
France
Tel: 33 4 91 33 66 97
info@alize-hotel.com
www.alize-hotel.com

A far more modest inn than most of those listed here, the Alizé has something none of the others do: the most envious location in town. This 18th-century stone building sits at the center of the U-shaped harbor, bang at the very heart of the Vieux Port overlooking the masts of bobbing boats. It's also quite a bit cheaper than the competition.  However, make sure to book a sea-facing room since the focus of this basic hotel is the views. Tear your eyes from the harbor, and you'll notice the 39 smallish rooms have a rustic simplicity, brightened by saturated Provençal shades of yellow and blue and solid, unstained wood furnishings.

$199 or less
Editor's Pick
Hôtel Le Rhul
269 Corniche John F. Kennedy
Marseille
France 13007
Tel: 33 4 91 52 01 77
Fax: 33 4 91 52 49 82
www.bouillabaissemarseille.com

This grand three-star hotel on the Corniche offers nothing but sea-view rooms, half of which have small private terraces. Aside from vistas across the Bay of Marseille, one really stays here to take advantage of the restaurant. It's a signatory of the "Bouillabaisse charter" to uphold the strictest traditions of the famed seafood stew, and the kitchen does a superb job of keeping the faith. As a lunch spot, it's long been favored by the rich and powerful, including former president, Jacques Chirac.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Le Petit Nice
Anse de Maldormé
Marseille
France 13007
Tel: 33 4 91 59 25 92
passedat@relaischateaux.com
www.petitnice-passedat.com

This exquisite pair of Greek villas, set in lush gardens on a rocky promontory overlooking the Mediterranean, has been run by the Passédat family since 1917. A member of the Relais & Chateaux group, it is undoubtedly Marseille's most exclusive hotel, with corresponding prices. In addition, almost everything costs extra, including breakfast on the terrace instead of in the restaurant. (That said, you must try the delicious homemade jams that arrive with your croissants.) Luxe touches abound—there's a heated sea-water pool, AC, private safes, and, for ease of mind, phone numbers of airlines and consulates programmed into the telephones. Each of the 16 rooms and suites (named after characters in the stories of local hero Marcel Pagnol) is unique, with decor ranging from classical to postmodern—and all are sumptuous. The hotel has a renowned, two Michelin-star, ferociously expensive, French haute restaurant with an even pricier wine list.

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Mercure Marseille Beauvau Vieux Port
4 rue Beauvau
Marseille
France
Tel: 33 4 91 54 91 00
h1293@accor.com
www.mercure.com/mercure/fichehotel/gb/mer/1293/fiche_hotel.shtml

Overlooking the Vieux Port, the Mercure is the best situated of the three-star chain properties and ranks as the oldest hotel in town (not to worry: it was renovated in 2003). The decor is modern Provençal-style in the 73 rooms and isn't bad for a cookie-cutter joint, with patterned drapes, some nice old flip-top desks and the like, along with double sinks in the baths. It has a bit more style, a far better location, and somewhat lower rates than its corporate cousins, the Sofitel/Novotel, farther out on the harbor. (Fair warning: there's no pool or restaurant.)

$300-$399
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
New Hotel of Marseille - Le Pharo
71 boulevard Charles Livon
Marseille
France
Tel: 33 4 91 315 315
www.new-hotel.com

With its bold graphics and contemporary art, the 100-room New Hotel injects South Beach style into this old port city. Herb gardens that supply the hotel's Alain Ducasse–trained chef, Jérôme Polio, line the front steps and establish the hotel's studied character. The sleek reception area was created from a handsome nineteenth-century building, and in the adjacent new building, the art-filled bar and restaurant overlook a wood-decked pool. Compact white guest rooms are dominated by blown-up photos of sixties model Twiggy, wood furniture is stained battleship gray, and bathrooms are stocked with La Compagnie de Provence Marseille's toiletries based on the city's famous olive oil soap. The friendly staff, who wear black uniforms with lettering that identifies their duties—FRONT DESK; HOUSEKEEPING; FOOD AND BEVERAGE—add to the hotel's merry atmosphere. Though not in the city center, the quiet residential location at the entrance to Marseille's port is convenient—a downtown bus stop at the front door, and the Plage des Catalans is a five-minute walk away.

$400 or more
Editor's Pick
Hotel Photo
Sofitel Marseille Vieux Port
36 Boulevard Charles Livon
Marseille
France 13007
Tel: 33 4 91 15 59 00
h0542@accor.com
www.sofitel.com/sofitel/fichehotel/gb/sof/0542/fiche_hotel.shtml

A superbly located four-star on the harbor (though, despite the name, not really within the Vieux Port), the Sofitel exudes all the charm for which cement-block chain properties are famous. The 131 rooms are done in modern modular, but—to be fair—tastefully so, with bright contemporary upholsteries and the occasional vaguely nautical touch, such as a wood-slat wall decked out with brass fittings. The rooftop restaurant, Les Trois Forts, offers upscale Mediterranean cuisine to go with the plate-glass panoramas, and there's an outdoor (unheated) pool. Oddly, the Novotel is in the same building (Sofitel's three-star corporate sibling), with a separate entrance and staff (and slightly lower prices).

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.