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Hotels of Menton

A hotel in Menton is an establishment that provides lodging paid on a short-term basis. Facilities provided may range from a basic bed and storage for clothing, to luxury features like en-suite bathrooms. Larger in Menton hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a swimming pool, business centre, childcare, conference facilities and social function services. Hotel rooms in Menton are usually numbered (or named in some smaller hotels and B&Bs) to allow guests to identify their room. Some Menton hotels offer meals as part of a room and board arrangement. Hotel operations vary in size, function, and cost. Most Menton hotels and major hospitality companies that operate hotels in Menton have set widely accepted industry standards to classify hotel types. General categories include the following:

Upscale luxury hotels in Menton
An upscale full service hotel facility in Menton that offers luxury amenities, full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and the highest level of personalized and professional service. Luxury Menton hotels are normally classified with at least a Four Diamond or Five Diamond status or a Four or Five Star rating depending on classification standards.

Full service hotels in Menton
Full service Menton hotels often contain upscale full-service facilities with a large volume of full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and a variety of on-site amenities such as swimming pools, a health club, children's activities, ballrooms, on-site conference facilities, etc.

Historic inns and boutique hotels in Menton
Boutique hotels of Menton are smaller independent non-branded hotels that often contain upscale facilities of varying size in unique or intimate settings with full service accommodations. Menton boutique hotels are generally 100 rooms or less. Some historic inns and boutique hotels in Menton may be classified as luxury hotels.

Focused or select service hotels in Menton
Small to medium-sized hotel establishments that offer a limited amount of on-site amenities that only cater and market to a specific demographic of Menton travelers, such as the single business traveler. Most Menton focused or select service hotels may still offer full service accommodations but may lack leisure amenities such as an on-site restaurant or a swimming pool.

Economy and limited service hotels in Menton
Small to medium-sized Menton hotel establishments that offer a very limited amount of on-site amenities and often only offer basic accommodations with little to no services, these facilities normally only cater and market to a specific demographic of travelers, such as the budget-minded Menton traveler seeking a "no frills" accommodation. Limited service Menton hotels often lack an on-site restaurant but in return may offer a limited complimentary food and beverage amenity such as on-site continental breakfast service.

Guest houses and B&Bs in Menton
A bed and breakfast in Menton is a small lodging establishment that offers overnight accommodation and inclusive breakfast. Usually, Menton bed and breakfasts are private homes or family homes offering accommodations. The typical Menton B&B has between 4 and 11 rooms, with 6 being the average. Generally, guests are accommodated in private bedrooms with private bathrooms, or in a suite of rooms including an en suite bathroom. Some homes have private bedrooms with a bathroom which is shared with other guests. Breakfast is served in the bedroom, a dining room, or the host's kitchen. Often the owners of guest house themselves prepare the breakfast and clean the rooms.

Hostels in Menton
Menton hostels provide budget-oriented, sociable accommodation where guests can rent a bed, usually a bunk bed, in a dormitory and share a bathroom, lounge, and sometimes a kitchen. Rooms can be mixed or single-sex, although private rooms may also be available. Hostels are often cheaper for both the operator and occupants; many Menton hostels have long-term residents whom they employ as desk agents or housekeeping staff in exchange for experience or discounted accommodation.

Apartment hotels, extended stay hotels in Menton
Extended stay hotels are small to medium-sized Menton hotels that offer longer term full service accommodations compared to a traditional hotel. Extended stay hotels may offer non-traditional pricing methods such as a weekly rate that cater towards travelers in need of short-term accommodations for an extended period of time. Similar to limited and select service hotels, on-site amenities are normally limited and most extended stay hotels in Menton lack an on-site restaurant.

Timeshare and destination clubs in Menton
Menton timeshare and destination clubs are a form of property ownership also referred to as a vacation ownership involving the purchase and ownership of an individual unit of accommodation for seasonal usage during a specified period of time. Timeshare resorts in Menton often offer amenities similar that of a Full service hotel with on-site restaurant(s), swimming pools, recreation grounds, and other leisure-oriented amenities. Destination clubs of Menton on the other hand may offer more exclusive private accommodations such as private houses in a neighborhood-style setting.

Motels in Menton
A Menton motel is a small-sized low-rise lodging establishment similar to that of a limited service hotel, but with direct access to individual rooms from the car park. Common during the 1950s and 1960s, motels were often located adjacent to a major road, where they were built on inexpensive land at the edge of towns or along stretches of highways. They are still useful in less populated areas of Menton for driving travelers, but the more populated an area becomes the more hotels fill the need. Many of Menton motels which remain in operation have joined national franchise chains, rebranding themselves as hotels, inns or lodges.

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Travelling and vacation in Menton

The harbour of Menton, with the basilica of Saint-Michel-Archange beyond, viewed from the Quai Napoléon III
The harbour of Menton, with the basilica of Saint-Michel-Archange beyond, viewed from the Quai Napoléon III
Flag of Menton
Coat of arms of Menton
Coat of arms
Menton is located in France
Coordinates:  / 43.775000; 07.50  / 43.775000; 07.50
Country France
Region Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
Department Alpes-Maritimes
Arrondissement Nice
Canton Menton
Intercommunality Riviera française
• Mayor (2008–2014) Jean-Claude Guibal
Area 14.05 km (5.42 sq mi)
Population (2012) 29,073
• Density 2,100/km (5,400/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
• Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
INSEE/Postal code 06083 /06500
Elevation 0–774 m (0–2,539 ft)
(avg. 16 m or 52 ft)

French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.

Menton (French pronunciation: ​[mɑ̃tɔ̃]; Occitan: [meˈta], written Menton in classical norm or Mentan in Mistralian norm; Italian: Mentone [menˈtoːne]) is a commune in the Alpes-Maritimes department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region in southeastern France.

Situated on the French Riviera, along the Franco-Italian border, it is nicknamed perle de la France ("Pearl of France").

Menton: History

The Menton area has been inhabited since the paleolithic era, and is the site of the original "Grimaldi Man" find of early modern humans, as well as remains of Neanderthals and Cro-Magnons. In Roman times, the Via Julia Augusta, a road connecting Placentia (now Piacenza) with Arelates (now Arles) passed through Menton, running along the Rue Longue in the old town. The first major settlement occurred during the 11th century CE, when the Count of Ventimiglia constructed the Château de Puypin (Podium Pinum) on the Pépin hill, north and west of the modern town centre. During the 13th century, the seigneury of Puypin fell to the Vento family of Genoa who built a new castle along the Roman road, now the site of the Vieux-Château cemetery, providing the core around which the current town grew. Menton was thus incorporated into the Republic of Genoa. The first mention of Menton dates from 21 July 1262, in the peace treaty between Charles of Anjou and Genoa. Its position on the border between the Angevin-ruled Provence and the Republic of Genoa, which at the time claimed Monaco as its western limit, made it a coveted location.

Menton, as part of Monaco, was the extreme western area of the Republic of Genoa (green color) in 1664.

Acquired in 1346 by Charles Grimaldi, Lord of Monaco, Menton was ruled by the Princes of Monaco until the French Revolution. Annexed during the Revolution, Menton remained part of France through the First Empire. It belonged to the district of Sanremo in the department of Alpes-Maritimes, which at the time included Monaco and Sanremo.

In 1814, Menton was included in a reconstituted principality of Monaco which, after Napoleon's Hundred Days in 1815, became a protectorate of the King of Sardinia. The Princes of Monaco were obliged to do homage to the King for Menton, although not for Monaco itself.

Map of the territory of the free cities of Menton and Roquebrune in 1848.

In 1848, Menton, along with its neighbour Roquebrune, seceded from Monaco, due at least in part to a tax imposed on lemon exports. They proclaimed themselves a "free city" during the 1848 revolutions related to the Italian Risorgimento, then two years later placed themselves under the protection of the Kingdom of Sardinia where they were administered by the House of Savoy for ten years.

The Treaty of Turin concluded on 24 March 1860 between the Kingdom of Sardinia and Napoleon III's France called for the annexation of the County of Nice to France, subject to a plebiscite, as a reward for French assistance in Italy's war against Austria. The plebiscite, with universal adult male suffrage, was held on April 15 and 16, 1860, and resulted in an overwhelming vote in favour of annexation (833 for versus 54 against in Menton and Roquebrune), despite complaints of rigged elections from, among others, Nice-born Italian nationalist Giuseppe Garibaldi. The county of Nice was thus annexed to France that June, and Napoleon III paid 4 million francs in compensation to the prince of Monaco, who renounced his rights in perpetuity on 2 February 1861.

The publication of Winter and Spring on the Shores of the Mediterranean (1861) by the English doctor James Henry Bennett had a profound effect on Menton, making it a popular destination for sufferers of tuberculosis. By the end of the 19th century, tourism was an important factor in Menton's growth. The town was popular with English and Russian aristocrats who built many of the luxurious hotels, villas, and palaces which still grace Menton today. Many of these hotels and palaces were pressed into service as hospitals during World War I to allow injured troops to recuperate in a pleasant climate.

Sailboats in Menton harbour, photograph by Jean Gilletta, early 1900s

Menton was the only sizable settlement captured by Italy during its invasion of France in June 1940. Following the armistice of June 22, 1940, two-thirds of the territory of the commune was annexed by Italy as terra irredenta. The annexation lasted until 8 September 1943.

Although officially returned to Vichy France, Menton was in fact occupied by Nazi Germany until its liberation by American and Canadian troops of the First Special Service Force on 8 September 1944.

Menton: Geography

The port and the old part of town
View of the port of Menton

Menton, nicknamed the Pearl of France, is located on the Mediterranean Sea at the Franco-Italian border, just across from the Ligurian town of Ventimiglia.

The fishing industry was devastated in the 1980s and 1990s when a combination of overfishing and hypoxia in the bay. At the time, the devastation was erroneously attributed to the dubiously nicknamed "killer algae" Caulerpa taxifolia (a non-native Asian tropical green alga first discovered in the Mediterranean Sea adjacent to the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco in 1984) spread throughout the coastal sea floor. Later, sound scientific findings revealed that the seaweed was adept at absorbing pollutants and excess nutrients, actually aiding the recovery of native Posidonia sea grass and enhancing local fish populations and overall biodiversity.

Menton: Climate

Menton has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate (Csa, according to the Köppen climate classification). However, the milder winters (on average) and the warmer nights in summer (on average), compared to the rest of the French Mediterranean coastal area, provide Menton with a particular micro-climate (experienced from Nice through Monaco and Menton, toward the Italian border) that is favorable to tangerine, orange and lemon groves, hence one of the town's symbols, the lemon. Winter frosts are extremely rare but may occasionally occur every few years. Likewise, summer temperatures are relatively moderate, rarely rising above 30°C.

  1. Mean monthly maxima and minima (i.e. the expected highest and lowest temperature readings at any point during the year or given month) calculated based on data at said location from 2009 to 2016. Extremes from 2009 to 2016 as well.

Menton: Townscape

Menton from the sea
Menton decorated window

Menton is famous for its gardens, including the Jardin Serre de la Madone, the Jardin botanique exotique de Menton ('Le Val Rahmeh'), the Fontana Rosa, the Maria Serena garden, and the modernist gardens of Les Colombières. Le Val Rahmeh was established in 1905 by Englishman Sir Percy Radcliffe, the first owner of the gardens, and named for his wife. Villa Fontana Rosa was built in 1922 by Blasco Ibáñez, a Spanish novelist, and the gardens of the villa are now open to the public.

  • The baroque basilica of Saint-Michel-Archange, with its belltower, was built in 1619 by the Genoese architect Lorenzo Lavagna.
  • The Bastion Museum, which features decoration by Jean Cocteau, is located in the Bastion of the port of Menton. The bastion, built overwater in 1636 as an advance defense for the port by the Princes of Monaco, is now located at the shoreline.
  • The wedding room at the Mairie (town hall) was painted in the 1950s by Cocteau, transforming it into a giant work of art.
  • Menton is home to at least half a dozen beaches.
  • The historic covered market was built in 1898 by local architect Adrien Rey. The market is open every day from 5 am until 1 pm in the summer; in the winter, it opens at 5:30 am. Over 30 kiosks both inside and around the market sell local and imported vegetables. The Belle Époque structure was one of many famous buildings constructed by the architect in the region.
  • Next to the beach and the covered market is the Jean Cocteau Museum. It opened in 2011 and is close to the Bastion Museum.

Menton: Colleges and universities

  • Middle East and Mediterranean campus of Sciences Po

Menton: Mentonasc language

The Mentonasc dialect is currently spoken by about 10% of the population in Menton, Roquebrune, and the surrounding villages. It is taught within the French educational system, as a variety of Niçard (i.e. Provençal and Occitan). However, in nineteenth-century linguistic descriptions, as well as in contemporary linguistic scholarship, Mentonasc is described as an intermediate between Niçard and the Intemelio dialect of Ligurian. Some scholars insist that Mentonasc is, at its base, a Ligurian dialect, with French influences coming only later, and that its supposed misclassification as a variety of Provençal has essentially political motives.

Menton: Origin of the name

Although the name's spelling and pronunciation in French are identical to those for the word that means "chin", there does not seem to be any link with this French word. According to the French geographer Ernest Nègre, the name Menton comes from the Roman name Mento. However, it is possible that the name of the city comes from Mons Ottonis (reconstituted) from the name of Otton II, the Count of Ventimiglia from 1162-1200. In Mentonasc, the city's name is Mentan (pronounced [mẽˈtã]), and in Italian Mentone ([menˈtoːne]).

An inhabitant of Menton, un mentonnais or un mentonasque in French, would be O mentonasc in the local dialect.

Menton: Annual town events

The Lemon Festival takes place every February. The festival follows a given theme each year; past themes include Viva España, Disney, Neverland, and India. The festival lasts a few days, with different bands passing through Menton's streets on foot or on truck trailers. The Casino Gardens in the centre of town are decorated in the theme of the festival, using lemons to cover the exhibits, and huge temporary statues are built and covered with citrus fruit.

The Casino Gardens are also the location for Menton's Christmas Festival.

The Menton Classical Musical Festival is also held every year in the centre of the old town.

Menton: Sport

Menton has a football team, Rapid de Menton, who play at the stadium Stade Lucien Rhein. Menton also has a rugby team, Le rugby Club Webb Ellis de Menton.

Menton: Notable residents

Émile Appay - Menton

Notables who were born, lived, or died in Menton include:

  • Jérôme Alonzo (born 1972), French first division football goalkeeper, born in Menton 20 November 1972
  • Richard Anconina (born 1953), French actor; before his film career, he worked for several years at a holiday club for seniors in Menton
  • Émile Appay (1876–1935), French landscape painter, spent time in Menton over the years with beautiful paintings of the sea.
  • Ferdinand Bac (1859–1952), French illustrator, lithographer, and writer; developed the house and gardens of Les Colombières above Menton for Émile and Caroline Ladan-Bockairy. The house contains frescoes and modernist furniture by Bac, with a large garden set over several levels. Les Colombières is a Monument Historique and has been recently restored.
  • Aubrey Vincent Beardsley (1872–1898), English illustrator and author
  • Lesley Blanch (1904-2007), English-born writer
  • Vicente Blasco Ibáñez (1867–1928), Spanish author; at the end of his life, lived on his estate, Fontana Rosa, in Menton
  • René Clément (1913–1996)
  • Jean Cocteau (1889–1963), French artist, spent much time in Menton over the years; the Jean Cocteau Museum is in Menton; decorated the wedding room in Menton's town hall, and the small stone bastion in Menton's harbour wall
  • Olivier Echouafni (born 1972), French first division football midfielder, born in Menton 13 September 1972
  • William Webb Ellis (1806–1872), inventor of rugby; lived in Menton at the end of his life and is buried in the old cemetery
  • Sébastien Gattuso (born 1971), Monégasque athlete specializing in bobsledding
  • Ivan Grigorovich (1853–1930), Imperial Russian Navy admiral, lived in Menton after the Russian Revolution
  • Panait Istrati (1884–1935), Romanian writer of French and Romanian expression (friends with Romain Rolland); lived in Menton for a brief period and has a street in Menton named after him
  • Joseph Joffo (born 1931), French author; lived temporarily in Menton during World War II
  • Anatoly Lunacharsky (died 1933), Russian Marxist revolutionary and the first Soviet People's Commissar of Enlightenment responsible for culture and education; died in Menton
  • Katherine Mansfield (1888-1923), New Zealand modernist short story writer who lived and worked in a street now named after her. Her former home, the Villa Isola Bella is used as the residence for New Zealand writers who receive the Katherine Mansfield Menton Fellowship to live and write there for a year.
  • Charles H. Spurgeon (1834–1892), British Baptist preacher, died in Menton
  • Graham Sutherland (1903–1980), English painter
  • Philip Meadows Taylor (1808–1876), British Indian civil servant and author
  • Hans-Georg Tersling (1857–1920), Danish architect, designed many buildings in the town
  • Cédric Varrault (born 1980), French first division football defender; began his career with the Menton football club
  • William Butler Yeats (born 1865), Irish writer and poet; died in Menton January 28, 1939 aged 73.

Menton: International relations


Menton is twinned with:

  • Germany Baden-Baden, Germany
  • Switzerland Montreux, Switzerland
  • Belgium Namur, Belgium
  • Greece Nafplio, Greece
  • Russia Sochi, Russia
  • United States Laguna Beach, United States
  • United Kingdom Gisburn, United Kingdom
  • Netherlands Noordwijk, Netherlands

Menton: See also

  • Mentonasc
  • Roquebrune-Cap-Martin
  • List of historical unrecognized states
  • Former countries in Europe after 1815
  • Intermelio
  • Antoine Sartorio
  • Communes of the Alpes-Maritimes department

Menton: References

  1. "Menton, "perle de la France"" (in French). Office de Tourisme de Menton.
  2. Émile Rivière, Découverte d'un Squelette Humain de l'Époque Paléolithique Dans les Cavernes des Baoussé-Rousse dites Grottes de Menton (Discovery of a Human Skeleton from the Paleolithic in the Caverns of Baoussé-Rousse also known as the Grottes de Menton), (J.-B. Baillière et Fils, Paris, 1873) (in French)
  3. La rue Longue (Official site of the town of Menton, accessed April 2009) (in French)
  4. Ermanno Amicucci. Nizza e l'Italia. Mondadori editore. Milano, 1939.
  5. Menton on the French Riviera (accessed April 2009)
  6. Ermanno Amicucci. Nizza e l'Italia. p 58-61
  7. Monaco, Menton, and Roquebrune
  8. Ted Jones (15 December 2007). The French Riviera: A Literary Guide for Travellers. Tauris Parke Paperbacks. ISBN 978-1-84511-455-8.
  9. La libération de Menton (The Liberation of Menton, Official site of the town of Menton, Accessed April 2009) (in French)
  10. Jaubert, J. M., J. R. M. Chisholm, G. Passeron-Seitre, D. Ducrot, H. T. Ripley, and L. Roy. 1999. No deleterious alterations in Posidonia beds in the Bay of Menton (France) eight years after Caulerpa taxifolia colonization. Journal of Phycology 35:1113-1119.
  11. Francour, P., M. Harmelin-Vivien, J. G. Harmelin, and J. duClerc. 1995. Impact of Caulerpa taxifolia colonization on the littoral ichthyofauna of northwestern Mediterranean. Hydrobiologia 300-301:345-353
  12. http://www.tourisme-menton.fr/Climat-et-Meteo-a-Menton.html
  13. "Station Name: MENTON (FRANCE)". March 2017. Retrieved 2017-03-15.
  14. "The "Colombières" garden". Menton – Gardens. Menton.com. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
  15. "Belle Epoque in Menton". Riviera Kitchen. 2011-09-29. Retrieved 2013-03-26.
  16. Edwards, Natasha (16 October 2012). "Menton, France: On the Jean Cocteau museum trail". The Daily Telegraph.
  17. James Bruny Andrews, Il dialetto di Mentone, in quanto egli tramezzi ideologicamente tra il provenzale e il ligure (The dialect of Menton, in which it is ideologically intermediate between Provençal and Ligurian) in Archivio Glottologico Italiano XII, 1890/92, pp. 97-106. (in English)
  18. J.-P. Dalbera, Interférences entre provençal et ligurien dans la génèse du système morphologique mentonnais (Interferences between Provençal and Ligurian in the genesis of the Mentonnais morphological system) in Bulletin du Centre de romanistique et de latinité tardive 4-5, Nice, 1989, pp. 89-97.
  19. W. Forner L'Intemelia linguistica, in Intemelion 1, Sanremo, 1995, pp. 67-82. (in Italian)
  20. Le mentonnais entre toutes les chaises ? in Lexique Français-Mentonnais (Caserio & al. 2001) (in French)
  21. Werner Forner.À propos du ligurien intémélien - La côte, l'arrière-pays, Travaux du Cercle linguistique de Nice, 7-8, 1986, pp. 29-62.
  22. F. Toso, Il brigasco e l'olivettese tra classificazione scientifica e manipolazioni politico-amministrative Intermelion #14 p. 103, 2008 (in Italian)
  23. Ernest Nègre, General Toponym of France : Etymology of 35,000 place names, Geneva : Librairie Droz, 1990. Volume I : Pre-Celtic, Celtic, and Roman names, § 11 118, p 664 (in French).
  24. (in French)Fondation de Menton
  25. "Rugby Club Webb Ellis Menton : présentation des règles du rugby, boutique maillot de rugby". Rugbyclub-webbellis.com. 2012-12-15. Retrieved 2013-03-26.
  26. "The "Colombières" garden". Domain Colombières. Monument historique. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
  27. Foreman, Liza (24 August 2013). "More Than Just a Famous Garden". The New York Times.
  28. "Obituary: Lesley Blanch". The Guardian. 10 May 2007.
  29. "Association Suisse des Communes et Régions d’Europe". L'Association suisse pour le Conseil des Communes et Régions d'Europe (ASCCRE) (in French). Archived from the original on 2012-07-24. Retrieved 2013-07-20.
  • Tourist office website
  • Tourist office website (English version)
  • City council website
  • Menton at DMOZ
  • Images of Menton
  • Menton holiday information page
  • Culture and local traditions
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