Provence, France

La Mirande

Rates from (inc tax)$376.06

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (21EUR), via, using today’s exchange rate.


Mediaeval Provençal mansion


Ancient heart of Avignon

La Mirande hotel has come a long way since its days as a 14th-century cardinal's residence, thanks to a Parisian designer, but its place of eminence across from Avignon's one-time papal palace – the aptly-named Palais des Papes – hasn't dimmed. After restoring the mansion to its former grandeur, the owners augmented its 17th-century ceiling and tapestries with art and antiques to impress any aficionado.

Smith Extra

Get this when you book through us:

Flowers, a basket of seasonal fruits and home-made biscuits or other sweet treats in your room on arrival.


Photos La Mirande hotel - Provence - France

Need to know




12 noon, but flexible, subject to availability (if available, there’s no charge). Earliest check-in, 3pm.


Double rooms from $376.06 (€345), excluding tax at 10 per cent.

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (EUR380.00), via, using today’s exchange rate.

More details

Rates do not include the breakfast buffet, which is €26.


Time your visit to coincide with one of the monthly cooking classes. The hotel’s chefs take turns to dish out shopping baskets, lead guests to the market, guide them in picking the best ingredients and then, back at the hotel, cooking an expert Provençal meal.

At the hotel

Terraced gardens, free WiFi throughout, valet parking, self parking, concierge, CD and DVD players on request. In rooms: flatscreen TV, free WiFi, fridge, Dr Hauschka toiletries.

Our favourite rooms

Room 27 (a large double) has bold colours – there are velvet, bottle-green chairs and a golden bed – and art deco accents. We also love Room 25, a standard room with an exceptional view of the popes’ palace, original tiled floors, silk-lined walls and high ceilings.

Packing tips

Bring a good book to enjoy in one of the cosy armchairs by the fire in the ornate Salon Rouge living room. And, leave room in your suitcase to take back souvenirs from the hotel’s gift shop: stock up on the chef’s home-made jams and biscuits.


The majority of the hotel’s common areas are on the ground floor and accessible by wheelchair or pushchair. One Grand Deluxe Room has been adapted for wheelchair users.


Welcome, but this is more of a grown-up getaway. Extra beds or cots can be added to Grand Deluxe Rooms, and babysitting is available for €15 an hour (book at least two days in advance).

Food and Drink

Photos La Mirande hotel - Provence - France

Top Table

In winter, a table by the fireplace is the cosiest spot; in summer, head for the quiet and picturesque terrace.

Dress Code

The restaurant’s an elegant space hung with tapestries, so a silk blouse or smart shirt won’t be out of place.

Hotel restaurant

The hotel’s restaurant serves traditional Provençal cuisine at its best: breakfasts in particular are très délicieux. Make sure to tear your eyes away from your food and gaze up at the dining room’s impressive original ceiling. Afternoon tea is served every day, complete with handmade pastries, in the glass-roofed patio.

Hotel bar

The sitting-room style bar is a cosy spot for a cocktail – in winter, grab a chair by the open fire. Drinks are poured from noon to 1am; the cocktail menu changes weekly and there’s a large collection of single malts.

Last orders

Breakfast is served 7–11am; lunch 12.30–2pm; and dinner 7.30–10pm.

Room service

Have light meals and snacks delivered to your room noon–3pm or 6.30–10pm.


Photos La Mirande hotel - Provence - France
La Mirande
4, place de l'Amirande


Touch down at Marseille-Provence Airport (formerly Marseille-Marignane), 90km from the hotel ( There are regular flights from throughout Europe, including London.


The local TGV station is a 15-minute drive from La Mirande; trains arrive regularly from Marseille, Montpellier, Aix-en-Provence, Lyon and Paris.


If you’re driving to La Mirande – and having a car during your stay will make it easier for you to explore the Provençal countryside beyond Avignon – there’s valet and self parking available on-site. The hotel’s on a private street: buzz for entry on arrival and you’ll be granted access.

Worth getting out of bed for

Dance your way across Pont Saint-Bénezet — the mediaeval “Pont d’Avignon” made famous by the French folk song; below it, in the Rhône, you can ride horses, hike, camp or swim on the Ile de Barthelasse (6 rue Pente Rapide, 84000 Avignon). Right opposite the hotel is the Palais des Papes, the grand popes’ palace in the Unesco-protected heart of historic Avignon. It's Europe’s largest mediaeval Gothic building (84000 Avignon; +33 (0)432 74 32 74;

Local restaurants

N°75 is a 15 minute walk from La Mirande. Eat locally sourced, seasonal food outdoors in the garden; choose from the menu on the chalk board (75 rue Guillaume Put, 84000 Avignon; +34 (0)4 90 27 16 00; La Vache à Carreaux is a cool little spot just around the corner from La Mirande that serves up traditional cheeses, meats, wines and music (14 rue Peyrollerie, 84000 Avignon; +34 (0)4 90 80 09 05; Traditional French brasserie La Fourchette is something of an institution in Avignon, and its reputation for excellent dining is well deserved (17 et 17bis rue Racine, 84000 Avignon; +34 (0)4 90 85 20 93). Located right next to the historic popes’ palace, Le Grand Café bistro serves Mediterranean and Provençal dishes. Sit in the cool dining room or out on the terrace (4 rue des Escaliers Sainte Anne, 84000 Avignon; +34 (0)4 90 86 86 77; At La Cuisine du Dimanche, dine outside on the sheltered patio among the plants and enjoy typical home-cooked Provençal dishes made from locally sourced ingredients. The menu’s small, but everything’s unbeatably fresh (31 rue Bonneterie, 84000 Avignon; +34 (0)4 90 82 99 10;


Photos La Mirande hotel - Provence - France

Anonymous review

Oh, mediaeval Catholicism. Your cardinals were dirty devils. Devout, no doubt, but also rather partial to the occasional soirée – or may we say, an odd communal dip in to the communal wine. And so, in the centre of Avignon, just a stone’s throw from the Palais des Papes – the 14th-century home of the pope – what did they do? They built a party house, of course. La Mirande, a temple to titillation, hosting marathons of eating, drinking and Lord knows what else across several centuries, was the venue of choice for the papal in crowd. The history of these four walls is a chronicle of pleasure; and this weekend Mr Smith and I very much plan on upholding the tradition.

As we meander our way along the cobbled alleyway running between the papal palace and its various appendages, we relish the romance of it all. Mon dieu, it is all so picturesque: an ancient roadside watch house; the palace towering above; the afternoon sun turning the stone around us a delectable milky caramel hue, one that you can just about taste. As we turned the corner La Mirande appears before us, its chiseled stone façade exuding regality. We stride past tourists distracted by the palace ahead; excusez-moi, we are expected.

Inside, a lobby connects to a glass-topped, leafy courtyard, into which the Provençal sun spills with gusto. Guests sipping coffee and chattering among the greenery exhibit not a bother in the world. And all it takes is a gentle ‘suite vingt, madame’ and we are off, swept upstairs to our maze of rooms, a set that would make Louis XIV blush green. All before us is dressed in ardent devotion to 18th-century detail – sage paneling skirts every wall; golden wall fabrics, printed with exotic flowers and pigeons, begs for stroking; wooden herringbone floors creak satisfyingly underfoot. We gaze out windows that open up to the garden below, where on balmy evenings guests sip wine amid blooming roses. An exquisite marquetry writing desk whisks me away: I am writing a Voltaire-esque masterpiece – by the flicker of candlelight; to the tone of Avignon church bells; with a feathered quill that drinks deeply from a pot of jet-black ink before scratching rhythmically upon the parchment… Mr Smith? He’s somewhat more taken with the fact that the gilded mirror turns into a TV.

We don’t see the staff; but we know they are working. We discover this because as we sink into corner chairs covered in prints of leafy Mediterranean veg, it becomes apparent that we have been left un petit lunch. We eat the entire bag of chocolate covered almonds from Puyricard Chocolaterie – what we don’t do for research’s sake! – and heck, if we’ve gone this far why not the whole of the sales aux amandes too. After all, heaven knows we are in Provence, where the requisite holiday uniform is none other than baggy linen. We suspect we should cheers to that, and with a bottle of champagne chosen breezily from the house list, we do.

It is decided that when one is in France and one is living in ‘papal chic’ as we are, it is very important that one does just as the cardinals would have. And so we must eat. We foray into the market where a chef feeds us fat scallops topped with flecks of truffle. We huff and puff to the peak of the palace gardens, swiftly rewarding ourselves with quivering wedges of the gooiest St Marcelin; it drips down out chins but we’re in the sun, and laughing and looking out across the river to Châteauneuf-du-Pape and we couldn’t give a fig. We dance on the Pont d’Avignon, just like in the song (which will now always, always be in our head), and then we guzzle the wines of the local Rhône Valley gods at a tiny backstreet wine bar. Long after the fiery sunset has slinked below the horizon, and Avignon is quiet, we amble our way back to La Mirande. A cheery night clerk opens the door with a smile. ‘Welcome back’, she grins sweetly, and then she turns very wicked and says, ‘would madame and monsieur like a drink at the bar before bed?’

Next morning the song of church bells stirs us from slumber. It is breakfast time. We swan down to take up position at the morning table. Sun streams in from the garden, illuminating cream wall hangings speckled with flowers. In the centre of the room, the spread awaits. We nibble. We sigh at the depth of flavour of the cheese, at the crunch of the bread. We are made dizzy by the sweet fragrance of vanilla-apricot homemade jams. We revel in the perfectly poached eggs, remarking in hushed, revered tones about their seductive, confident ooze. We eat until it is nearly teatime, and then we move to the darkened, atmospheric drawing room, in front of a crackling fire. To the tune of some classical something or other and by fire’s flicker, we thumb through senescent historical tomes and crisp-paged modern art books, nibbling on dense poppyseed cakes. We work our way dutifully through the vast tea menu, and then eventually it is all so terribly exhausting that we drift off in front of the fire.

And as the afternoon becomes the evening then it is time to go. I don’t feel ready – we haven’t even made it their Michelin-decorated restaurant yet. Though as we reluctantly hand over our key, the desk clerk bestows a final benediction – ‘but madame’ she coos, ‘surely that’s a reason to come back again?’


The Guestbook

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith Hotel with us, we’ll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what other Smith members had to say in La Mirande’s Guestbook below.

We loved

Location, service, restaurant, gardens. 8/10

Don’t expect

No air conditioning during our visit as it was between seasons. No screens in the windows and there were mosquitos so we could not open the windows for cool air


Stayed on 14 May 2016

We loved

Decor was fabulously Provencal with a quiet informal dignity that comes from the buildings' 400 years of history and location. Dinner on the terrace was a delicious and very romantic experience.

Don’t expect

Because of its location, you really need a cab from the TGV or station since it's in the oldest part of the city. Cabs are about 25.


Stayed on 27 Aug 2015

We loved

The most beautifully considered small touches and attention to detail. LINEN sheets - real linen, crisp and perfect. Guerlain soap and shampoo - not the ubiquitous stuff that most places settle for. Thoughtful decoration and clever use of technology in traditional surroundings.

Don’t expect

...lots of light. The rooms are subtly lit and the building is old, so the southern sun doesn't reach inside during the daytime and at night all is soft and shadowy.


Stayed on 23 Aug 2015

We loved

The restaurant is excellent and the service top class. The restaurant courtyard garden is beautiful and home to a variety of birds. It is quiet and private. Wine with the meal is high quality - the sommeliers are really helpful and unpretentious if you don't know much about the different vintages on offer and nothing is too much trouble. It's a great place for a celebration.


Stayed on 23 Jul 2015

We loved

Customer service was great. We were robbed and they went out of the way to help.

Don’t expect stop rain!


Stayed on 12 Jun 2015