We had to pick somewhere to stay in Normandy for our first night in France. The easy decision would be to head to somewhere focused on tourists such as the resorts that service the D-Day beaches on the Manche coast. Indeed, we have stayed at the Chateau la Cheneviere (http://www.lacheneviere.com/en.html) close to Port-en-Bessin (and Bayeaux) before, and it is a very good hotel, including an excellent restaurant. This time round we headed over towards the western side of the peninsula and stayed in Blainville-sur-mer, a small and sleepy village, selected for no other good reason apart from the presence of a hotel called Le Mascaret (http://www.restaurant-lemascaret.fr/), part of the Chateaux and Hotels collection.
Le Mascaret is located in the old girls’ school and is run by a friendly and welcoming husband and wife team (Philippe and Nadia Hardy). Its decoration could be described as “quirky” or “interesting” but we found the rooms to be comfortable and bright. The best part of the hotel was the fact that its restaurant has one Michelin star, a fact that we didn’t realize until we got there. Naturally, we ate in the restaurant and enjoyed an excellent meal based on local produce (the breakfast the next morning was pretty good too). All in all, Le Mascaret is a bit of a gem somewhere that you mightn’t expect to find excellence.