A Travellerspoint blog

Rothschild Villa and gorgeous gardens on the French Riviera

View of the villa from the Temple of Love; visiting is an easy and scenic bus ride from Nice

View of the villa from the Temple of Love; visiting is an easy and scenic bus ride from Nice

The villa was constructed between 1905 and 1912 for the Baroness Beatrice Rothschild; of course, it was mainly a winter home as she had several other residences

The villa was constructed between 1905 and 1912 for the Baroness Beatrice Rothschild; of course, it was mainly a winter home as she had several other residences

The galas held in the villa attracted the rich and famous including Somerset Maugham, Jean Cocteau, Isadora Duncan and Givenchy

The galas held in the villa attracted the rich and famous including Somerset Maugham, Jean Cocteau, Isadora Duncan and Givenchy

F Scott Fitzgerald wrote The Great Gatsby while staying on the French Riviera and began Tender is the Night before heading back to the US

F Scott Fitzgerald wrote The Great Gatsby while staying on the French Riviera and began Tender is the Night before heading back to the US

Beatrice divorced her husband Maurice in 1904 after he accumulated huge gambling debts; she never remarried

Beatrice divorced her husband Maurice in 1904 after he accumulated huge gambling debts; she never remarried

One of the highlights of visiting the villa is the magnificent views east and west; here, looking west, is the popular vacation spot of Villefranche sur Mer

One of the highlights of visiting the villa is the magnificent views east and west; here, looking west, is the popular vacation spot of Villefranche sur Mer

1756 Vincennes porcelain; upon her death the baroness donated her villa and collections to the French Academy of Fine Arts

1756 Vincennes porcelain; upon her death the baroness donated her villa and collections to the French Academy of Fine Arts

This table once belonged to Marie Antoinette; Beatrice was famous for her grand parties like the one where she had Anna Pavlova, bathed in moonlight, dancing to Chopin

This table once belonged to Marie Antoinette; Beatrice was famous for her grand parties like the one where she had Anna Pavlova, bathed in moonlight, dancing to Chopin

Spanish Garden; in the 1950s the peninsula became a popular summer destination for stars such as Charlie Chaplin, Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Roger Moore, Tony Curtis and David Niven

Spanish Garden; in the 1950s the peninsula became a popular summer destination for stars such as Charlie Chaplin, Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Roger Moore, Tony Curtis and David Niven

Snow here is rare occurring about once every 10 years; in 1985 the area received 12-16 inches of snow

Snow here is rare occurring about once every 10 years; in 1985 the area received 12-16 inches of snow

The musical fountains perform every 20 minutes with a nice choreographed show

The musical fountains perform every 20 minutes with a nice choreographed show

During the Belle Epoque, the Cap-Ferrat was already the vacation resort of the world elite

During the Belle Epoque, the Cap-Ferrat was already the vacation resort of the world elite

In addition to Jean Cocteau, other artists of Beatrice's era visited Cap-Ferrat including Matisse, Chagall and Picasso

In addition to Jean Cocteau, other artists of Beatrice's era visited Cap-Ferrat including Matisse, Chagall and Picasso

The different gardens create many intimate spaces with unique atmospheres; it was almost like totally different themed rooms in a house

The different gardens create many intimate spaces with unique atmospheres; it was almost like totally different themed rooms in a house

1757 Sevres porcelain; the villa is located on Saint Jean Cap Ferrat, a narrow peninsula with some of the highest property values in the world

1757 Sevres porcelain; the villa is located on Saint Jean Cap Ferrat, a narrow peninsula with some of the highest property values in the world

Beatrice traveled a great deal and this was her make-up case

Beatrice traveled a great deal and this was her make-up case

Beatrice was the granddaughter of James Rothschild who founded the family banking business in Paris

Beatrice was the granddaughter of James Rothschild who founded the family banking business in Paris

Villefranche, seen from the villa, is one of the most popular French cruise ports; it lies just east of Nice

Villefranche, seen from the villa, is one of the most popular French cruise ports; it lies just east of Nice

Current neighbors of the Rothschild villa include Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and composer Andrew Lloyd Webber

Current neighbors of the Rothschild villa include Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and composer Andrew Lloyd Webber

Queen Victoria was a frequent visitor to the French Riviera; she first visited Menton in 1882 and later spent most of her time in Nice

Queen Victoria was a frequent visitor to the French Riviera; she first visited Menton in 1882 and later spent most of her time in Nice

Guest bedroom; in 1934, the baroness died in Davos, Switzerland at the age of 69; she is buried in the famous Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris

Guest bedroom; in 1934, the baroness died in Davos, Switzerland at the age of 69; she is buried in the famous Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris

In 2012, Cap Ferrat was named as the second most expensive residential location in the world after Monaco

In 2012, Cap Ferrat was named as the second most expensive residential location in the world after Monaco

From the Rothschild villa you could get glimpses of other spectacular villas nearby; I wonder who owns them and if they obtained their wealth legally

From the Rothschild villa you could get glimpses of other spectacular villas nearby; I wonder who owns them and if they obtained their wealth legally

The Belle Epoque Italian-style villa houses a treasure of decorative arts which were described in detail on the excellent audio guide

The Belle Epoque Italian-style villa houses a treasure of decorative arts which were described in detail on the excellent audio guide

Hand-painted walls; popular local dishes include sea bass steaks in lime and salmon tournedos with truffles

Hand-painted walls; popular local dishes include sea bass steaks in lime and salmon tournedos with truffles

The French Riviera has some of the most fantastic scenery anywhere in the world and it continues into Italy through the Cinqueterre

The French Riviera has some of the most fantastic scenery anywhere in the world and it continues into Italy through the Cinqueterre

The Rothschild family banking business started in Frankfurt in the 1760s; they were already a wealthy Jewish family

The Rothschild family banking business started in Frankfurt in the 1760s; they were already a wealthy Jewish family

Beatrice caught an unspecified disease from her husband Maurice that left her unable to have children

Beatrice caught an unspecified disease from her husband Maurice that left her unable to have children

Painter Edvard Munch (The Scream) rented a villa on Saint Jean Cap Ferrat in 1891 and developed a passion for gambling in Monte Carlo

Painter Edvard Munch (The Scream) rented a villa on Saint Jean Cap Ferrat in 1891 and developed a passion for gambling in Monte Carlo

The French Riviera has 310 to 330 days of sunshine a year, 71 miles of coastline and even 14 ski resorts

The French Riviera has 310 to 330 days of sunshine a year, 71 miles of coastline and even 14 ski resorts

Beatrice had these doors brought from a Chinese palace; popular dishes on the peninsula include wild boar

Beatrice had these doors brought from a Chinese palace; popular dishes on the peninsula include wild boar

Papal Tapestry; Just days after the railway reached Nice in 1864, Tsar Alexander II of Russia visited on a private train, followed soon afterwards by Napoleon III and then Leopold II, the King of<br /> Belgium

Papal Tapestry; Just days after the railway reached Nice in 1864, Tsar Alexander II of Russia visited on a private train, followed soon afterwards by Napoleon III and then Leopold II, the King of
Belgium

The villa has 9 distinct gardens; the Spanish garden is modeled after those of the Alhambra

The villa has 9 distinct gardens; the Spanish garden is modeled after those of the Alhambra

Gorgeous porcelain clock; Americans were largely responsible for making summer high season, French fashion designer, Coco Chanel, made sunbathing fashionable; she acquired a striking tan during summer 1923, and tans then became the fashion in Paris

Gorgeous porcelain clock; Americans were largely responsible for making summer high season, French fashion designer, Coco Chanel, made sunbathing fashionable; she acquired a striking tan during summer 1923, and tans then became the fashion in Paris

Edith Wharton wrote the Age of Innocence (1920) on the French Riviera for which she won the Pulitzer Prize (the first woman to do so)

Edith Wharton wrote the Age of Innocence (1920) on the French Riviera for which she won the Pulitzer Prize (the first woman to do so)

1782 Sevres porcelain vase; the baroness hired and fired ten architects during the seven year building process of the villa

1782 Sevres porcelain vase; the baroness hired and fired ten architects during the seven year building process of the villa

Strict architectural guidelines have spared this peninsula from overdevelopment that has become common on the French Riviera

Strict architectural guidelines have spared this peninsula from overdevelopment that has become common on the French Riviera

1767 Sevres porcelain set; Rothschild rescued many items from palaces that were being destroyed in Paris in the interest of urban planning

1767 Sevres porcelain set; Rothschild rescued many items from palaces that were being destroyed in Paris in the interest of urban planning

During the 19th century, the Rothschild family had the largest private fortune in the world, as well as the largest private fortune in modern world history

During the 19th century, the Rothschild family had the largest private fortune in the world, as well as the largest private fortune in modern world history

Saint Jean Cap Ferrat became a favorite holiday destination for European aristocrats and international millionaires in the late 1890s

Saint Jean Cap Ferrat became a favorite holiday destination for European aristocrats and international millionaires in the late 1890s

Beatrice's bedroom; the patriarch of the family was Mayer Rothschild who started a banking business then sent his 5 sons to the largest banking centers in Europe to start businesses there

Beatrice's bedroom; the patriarch of the family was Mayer Rothschild who started a banking business then sent his 5 sons to the largest banking centers in Europe to start businesses there

The rose garden was in sad shape; there were few labels on the plants too

The rose garden was in sad shape; there were few labels on the plants too

The west view from the villa is the tourist haven of Villefranche; the old city walls remain but there is little else left of historical importance

The west view from the villa is the tourist haven of Villefranche; the old city walls remain but there is little else left of historical importance

I wish they had descriptions on the items; the audioguide discussed many of the items but my retention wasn't very good

I wish they had descriptions on the items; the audioguide discussed many of the items but my retention wasn't very good

The two story pink villa is built around an interior courtyard; the baroness was quite eccentric and often dressed in pink from head to toe

The two story pink villa is built around an interior courtyard; the baroness was quite eccentric and often dressed in pink from head to toe

On the tip of this peninsula is a super posh Four Seasons Hotel designed by Gustave Eiffel; guests have included Winston Churchill and Elizabeth Taylor

On the tip of this peninsula is a super posh Four Seasons Hotel designed by Gustave Eiffel; guests have included Winston Churchill and Elizabeth Taylor

With the arrival of the railway in the mid 19th century, the French Riviera became the vacation spot and playground of British, Russian and other aristocrats

With the arrival of the railway in the mid 19th century, the French Riviera became the vacation spot and playground of British, Russian and other aristocrats

The villa is neighbors with Grand Hotel du Cap Ferrat which has hosted Bill Clinton, George W Bush and plenty of European royalty

The villa is neighbors with Grand Hotel du Cap Ferrat which has hosted Bill Clinton, George W Bush and plenty of European royalty

The baroness was an animal lover and always had her pet dogs with her; she even had chairs made for her favorite pooches

The baroness was an animal lover and always had her pet dogs with her; she even had chairs made for her favorite pooches

What a great location for a love seat but it should be facing the other way; great weather for my visit

What a great location for a love seat but it should be facing the other way; great weather for my visit

Americans began coming to the south of France in the 19th century; John Pierpont Morgan gambled in Monte Carlo and bought local paintings which he shipped to the Metropolitan Museum in NY

Americans began coming to the south of France in the 19th century; John Pierpont Morgan gambled in Monte Carlo and bought local paintings which he shipped to the Metropolitan Museum in NY

Gorgeous view from the train along the French Riviera; much of the ride is in tunnels but the glimpses of the sea are stunning

Gorgeous view from the train along the French Riviera; much of the ride is in tunnels but the glimpses of the sea are stunning

There are other villas nearby also open to the public but this one seemed the best of the bunch based on my research

There are other villas nearby also open to the public but this one seemed the best of the bunch based on my research

I had not seen this cactus species before; interesting to see a succulent garden that belongs in Texas here on the French Riviera

I had not seen this cactus species before; interesting to see a succulent garden that belongs in Texas here on the French Riviera

My favorite podcast these days is Revisionist History by Malcolm Gladwell; the series is so enlightening and enjoyable

My favorite podcast these days is Revisionist History by Malcolm Gladwell; the series is so enlightening and enjoyable

Posted by VagabondCowboy 05:09

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