Rhône-Alpes, France

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Hotels of Rhône-Alpes

A hotel in Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a swimming pool, business centre, childcare, conference facilities and social function services. Hotel rooms in Rhône-Alpes are usually numbered (or named in some smaller hotels and B&Bs) to allow guests to identify their room. Some Rhône-Alpes hotels offer meals as part of a room and board arrangement. Hotel operations vary in size, function, and cost. Most Rhône-Alpes hotels and major hospitality companies that operate hotels in Rhône-Alpes have set widely accepted industry standards to classify hotel types. General categories include the following:

Upscale luxury hotels in Rhône-Alpes
An upscale full service hotel facility in Rhône-Alpes that offers luxury amenities, full service accommodations, on-site full service restaurant(s), and the highest level of personalized and professional service. Luxury Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes
Full service Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes
Boutique hotels of Rhône-Alpes are smaller independent non-branded hotels that often contain upscale facilities of varying size in unique or intimate settings with full service accommodations. Rhône-Alpes boutique hotels are generally 100 rooms or less. Some historic inns and boutique hotels in Rhône-Alpes may be classified as luxury hotels.

Focused or select service hotels in Rhône-Alpes
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 Rhône-Alpes travelers, such as the single business traveler. Most Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes
Small to medium-sized Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes traveler seeking a "no frills" accommodation. Limited service Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes
A bed and breakfast in Rhône-Alpes is a small lodging establishment that offers overnight accommodation and inclusive breakfast. Usually, Rhône-Alpes bed and breakfasts are private homes or family homes offering accommodations. The typical Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes
Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes
Extended stay hotels are small to medium-sized Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes lack an on-site restaurant.

Timeshare and destination clubs in Rhône-Alpes
Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes on the other hand may offer more exclusive private accommodations such as private houses in a neighborhood-style setting.

Motels in Rhône-Alpes
A Rhône-Alpes 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 Rhône-Alpes for driving travelers, but the more populated an area becomes the more hotels fill the need. Many of Rhône-Alpes motels which remain in operation have joined national franchise chains, rebranding themselves as hotels, inns or lodges.

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Region of France
Flag of Rhône-Alpes
Coat of arms of Rhône-Alpes
Coat of arms
Rhône-Alpes in France.svg
Country France
Prefecture Lyon
• President Jean-Jack Queyranne (PS)
• Total 43,698 km (16,872 sq mi)
Population (2014-01-01)
• Total 6,449,000
• Density 150/km (380/sq mi)
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
• Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
ISO 3166 code FR-V
GDP (2013){{{GDP_ref}}} Ranked 2nd
Total €204.7 billion (US$269.4 bn)
Per capita €31,231 (US$39,898)
NUTS Region FR7
Website www.rhonealpes.fr

Rhône-Alpes (French pronunciation: [ʁo.n‿alp]; Arpitan: Rôno-Arpes; Occitan: Ròse-Aups; Italian: Rodano-Alpi) is a former administrative region of France. Since 1 January 2016, it is part of the new region Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes. It is located on the eastern border of the country, towards the south. The region was named after the Rhône and the Alps mountain range. Its capital, Lyon, is the second-largest metropolitan area in France after Paris. Rhône-Alpes has the sixth-largest economy of any European region.

Rhône-Alpes: Geography

Rhône-Alpes is located in the east of France. To the north are the French regions of Bourgogne (Burgundy) and Franche-Comté, to the west it borders the region Auvergne, to the south it borders Languedoc-Roussillon and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur. The east of the region contains the westernmost part of the Alps and borders Switzerland and Italy. The highest peak is Mont Blanc, on the French-Italian border. The central part of the region comprises the river valleys of the Rhône and the Saône. The confluence of these two rivers is at Lyon. The western part of the region contains the start of the Massif Central mountain range. The region also borders or contains major lakes such as Lake Geneva (Lac Léman) and Lake Annecy. The Ardèche flows through the southwest portion of the region, where it has carved the deepest gorge in Europe.

As with the rest of France, French is the only official language of the region. Until the mid-20th century, Arpitan was widely spoken in the whole region, while many of the inhabitants of the south spoke varieties of Occitan; both are in steep decline in this region. There are immigrant populations from Armenia, Italy, North Africa, Poland and Portugal amongst other places.

Rhône-Alpes is made up of the following departments:

  • Ain (01). Capital: Bourg-en-Bresse
  • Ardèche (07). Capital: Privas
  • Drôme (26). Capital: Valence
  • Isère (38). Capital: Grenoble
  • Loire (42). Capital: Saint-Étienne
  • Rhône (69). Capital: Lyon
  • Savoie (73). Capital: Chambéry
  • Haute-Savoie (74). Capital: Annecy

And, since 2015, Metropolis with territorial collectivity statute:

  • Metropolis of Lyon (69). Capital: Lyon

Rhône-Alpes: Population

Rhône-Alpes contains 3 major cities in France. It forms the triangle Lyon - Grenoble - Saint-Étienne. This triangle is the economic core of the region. These three urban areas are very complementary, and have smaller cities around, like satellites.

  • Lyon area : 2,188,759 inhabitants (2011)
  • Grenoble area : 675,122 inhabitants (2011)
  • Saint-Étienne area : 508,548 inhabitants (2011)
  • Valence area : 175,095 inhabitants (2011)
The Kiosque Peynet on the Champ de Mars in Valence.
Castle and rooftops in the old section of Chambéry
The Palais de l'Isle in Annecy

Rhône-Alpes: Prefectures

This list is from biggest agglomeration to the smallest:

  • Lyon (Rhône)
  • Grenoble (Isère)
  • Saint-Étienne (Loire)
  • Valence (Drôme)
  • Chambéry (Savoie)
  • Annecy (Haute-Savoie)
  • Bourg-en-Bresse (Ain)
  • Privas (Ardèche)

Rhône-Alpes: History

Although there have been people in Rhône-Alpes since pre-historic times, the earliest recorded settlers of the region were the Gauls (Celts). Cities such as Lyon were founded by them and the region traded with both northern and southern Europe. Most of the area became part of Roman territory during the invasion of Celtic Gaul led by Julius Caesar and was at various times part of the regions of Lugdunensis and Gallia. Lyon itself became a major city in the Roman Empire.

The region, excepting Savoy, was part of the Merovingian and Carolingian Kingdoms before becoming a royal territory under the Capetians. As it became a royal territory early on in French history, its cultural, political and economic influences and developments paralleled those of greater France. (See History of France.)

Rhône-Alpes: Transportation

Main article: Transport in Rhône-Alpes

Rhône-Alpes is a major European transit hub, linking northern France and Europe to the Mediterranean area. Millions travel along its motorways in summertime from Paris to holidays at the sea. The E15 Euroroute (Britain to Spain) runs through the region. There are international airports at Lyon, Grenoble and Saint-Étienne and many other minor airports and airfields. The region is also a transport hub for the rail-network with the TGV running through Lyon from Paris and the north, to the Mediterranean. A high-speed rail link is planned from Lyon to Turin.

Rhône-Alpes: Economy

Main article: Economy of Rhône-Alpes

Rhône-Alpes is a prosperous region which can be seen by its per capita GDP of about €31,231 ($40,000), which is higher than the French average, and an average income of €35,910 ($50,246), its economy second in size only to Île-de-France in France. This can be attributed to the diversity of the production in different sectors. The region is one of the Four Motors for Europe.

  • Industry, in particular:
    • Light engineering and high-tech
    • Mechanical engineering in the area of Annecy
    • Precision machining in the area of Cluses
  • Services, in particular:
    • High-tech industries, nanotechnology, biotechnology especially in Grenoble with 62,300 jobs in these sectors thanks to the presence of the Polygone Scientifique, Inovallée and some large companies as Schneider Electric.
    • Optic and design in Saint-Étienne
    • Tourism with the Alps (for skiing), Lyon and Grenoble (for culture) and the Ardèche (adventure sports/camping) particularly popular
    • Education, with major universities in Lyon, Grenoble and Saint-Étienne.

In the past mining, especially coal mining was an important sector, particularly around Saint-Étienne, although this has declined since the 1970s.

The area of the region that lies close to Switzerland has an economy linked to that of Geneva. This area forms a hinterland for the Geneva hub.

The Triangle of Lyon, Saint-Étienne and Grenoble contribute a GDP of €145 billion to the region. Add Valence to it, it is almost €150 billion. In addition, Lyon alone has a Gross Metropolitan Product of about €85 billion.

Rhône-Alpes: Major cities

Annecy Saint-Chamond
Bourg-en-Bresse Saint-Étienne
Bron Saint-Martin-d'Hères
Chambéry Thonon-les-Bains
Grenoble Valence
Lyon Vaulx-en-Velin
Montélimar Villeurbanne
Roanne Vénissieux
Vienne Villefranche-sur-Saône

Rhône-Alpes: Food

Lyon is noted as a gastronomic centre of France and specialities served in its traditional bouchons include Lyon sausage, sophisticated salami (known there as "rosette"), tripe and quenelles. In the east of the region the food has an Alpine flavour with dishes such as fondue, raclette common, gratin dauphinois and gratin savoyard. The region is also famous for its Bresse poultry and the many varieties of cheese including Tomme de Savoie, Bleu de Bresse, Reblochon, Saint-Marcellin and Vacherin.

Wines in this region include the very famous Beaujolais, Côtes du Rhône and Savoy wine. Chartreuse liqueur is made in the region.

Rhône-Alpes: Winter Olympics

Rhône-Alpes region has hosted the Winter Olympics three times; in 1924 at Chamonix, 1968 at Grenoble, and 1992 at Albertville. Annecy tried to be 4th city, but it failed, getting outvoted by Pyeong-Chang.

Rhône-Alpes: Tourism

The Bastille, 264 m above Grenoble

Situated between Paris and the Côte d’Azur, on the border with both Switzerland and Italy, and offering access to two international airports (Lyon and Geneva), impressive rail connections and a vast motorway network, the Rhône-Alpes region is at "the crossroads of Europe".

Boasting eight natural parks and peerless sites such as Mont Blanc and the Gorges de l’Ardèche, Rhône-Alpes offers a wide range of different landscapes: mountains, vineyards and gentle valleys, fields of lavender and olive groves.

Every form of sport is readily available, set against an impressive natural backdrop: skiing, hiking, mountain biking or even paragliding and canoeing. Besides hosting three Winter Olympics games due to its being the largest ski area in the world, Rhône-Alpes is the second most important golfing region in France with over 60 courses.

Saint-Gervais-les-Bains has been a popular holiday destination since the early 1900s

Enthusiasts of art and culture will not be disappointed by the region’s Villes d’Art: Lyon, which is classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage site, Annecy, Grenoble, Chambéry, and Saint-Étienne.

And last but not least, connoisseurs of good food and wine will be spoilt for choice by the range of local specialties available to taste along with a Beaujolais or a Côtes du Rhône, and by the sheer number of famous restaurants (with Paul Bocuse at the top of the list) in the region.

Rhône-Alpes: Lakes

There are six main lakes in Rhône-Alpes

  • Lac de Paladru
  • Lac d'Aiguebelette
  • Lac du Bourget
  • Lac d'Annecy
  • Lac de Nantua
  • Lac Léman

Rhône-Alpes: Gastronomy

For several centuries Lyon, capital of Rhône-Alpes, has been known as the French capital of gastronomy, due, in part, to the presence of many of France's finest chefs in the city and its surroundings (e.g. Paul Bocuse). This reputation also comes from the fact that two of France's best known wine-growing regions are located near Lyon: the Beaujolais to the North, and the Côtes du Rhône to the South. Beaujolais wine is very popular in Lyon and remains the most common table wine served with local dishes.

Lyon is the home of very typical and traditional restaurants: the bouchons. Bouchons are usually convivial restaurants serving local dishes, and local wines.

Lyon is famous for its morning snacks, the mâchons, made up of local charcuterie, especially the rosette and usually accompanied by Beaujolais red wine. Traditional local dishes include saucisson de Lyon (sausage), andouillette, coq au vin, esox (pike) quenelle, gras double (tripe cooked with onions), salade lyonnaise (lettuce with bacon, croûtons and a poached egg), marrons glacés and cardoon au gratin.

Rhône-Alpes: See also

  • List of châteaux in Rhône-Alpes
  • Transport in Rhône-Alpes

Rhône-Alpes: References

  1. Loi n° 2015-29 du 16 janvier 2015 relative à la délimitation des régions, aux élections régionales et départementales et modifiant le calendrier électoral (in French)
  2. grenoble-isere.com, AEPI edition 2015, pages 7,8 and 9. (French)
  3. "Rhone Alpes Economy". French-property.com. Retrieved 2013-09-06.
  • Rhône-Alpes page on france.fr- official French website (in English)
  • Rhône-Alpes Tourisme- travel website
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+ Nigeria
+ North Korea
+ Northern Mariana Islands
+ Norway
+ Oman
+ Pakistan
+ Palau
+ Palestine
+ Panama
+ Papua New Guinea
+ Paraguay
+ Peru
+ Philippines
+ Poland
+ Portugal
+ Puerto Rico
+ Qatar
+ Romania
+ Russia
+ Rwanda
+ Réunion
+ Saint Barthélemy
+ Saint Kitts and Nevis
+ Saint Lucia
+ Saint Martin
+ Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
+ Samoa
+ San Marino
+ Saudi Arabia
+ Senegal
+ Serbia
+ Seychelles
+ Sierra Leone
+ Singapore
+ Sint Maarten
+ Slovakia
+ Slovenia
+ Solomon Islands
+ South Africa
+ South Korea
+ Spain
+ Sri Lanka
+ Sudan
+ Suriname
+ Swaziland
+ Sweden
+ Switzerland
+ Syria
+ Taiwan
+ Tajikistan
+ Tanzania
+ Thailand
+ Togo
+ Tonga
+ Trinidad and Tobago
+ Tunisia
+ Turkey
+ Turkmenistan
+ Turks and Caicos Islands
+ U.S. Virgin Islands
+ Uganda
+ Ukraine
+ United Arab Emirates
+ United Kingdom
+ United States
+ Uruguay
+ Uzbekistan
+ Vanuatu
+ Vatican City
+ Venezuela
+ Vietnam
+ Yemen
+ Zambia
+ Zimbabwe
Vacation: Popular Goods
Popular Goods
Trousers & shorts

Skin care
Hygiene products


Home appliances
Interior design
Hand tools
Gardening tools
Building materials

Culinary (Cooking)
Food preparation appliances
Cooking appliances
Cooking utensils
Cookware & bakeware

Children's clothing

Activity trackers
Audio electronics
Apple electronics
Computer hardware
Computer peripherals
Consumer electronics
Digital electronics
Laptops (notebooks)
Mobile phones
Musical instruments
Optical devices
Photography equipment
Rechargeable batteries
Satellite navigation
Tablet computers
Video game consoles
Wearable computers

Sports equipment
Sports clothing

Tourism by country
Tourist attractions
Low-cost airlines
Tourism companies
Travel websites
Cruise lines
Cruise ships
Travel gear
Camping equipment
Hiking equipment
Fishing equipment

Auto accessories
Automotive electronics
Auto parts
Auto chemicals

Windows software
Mac OS software
Linux software
Android software
IOS software
Access Control Software
Business Software
Communication Software
Computer Programming
Digital Typography Software
Educational Software
Entertainment Software
Genealogy Software
Government Software
Graphics Software
Health Software
Industrial Software
Knowledge Representation Software
Language Software
Legal Software
Library & Info Science Software
Multimedia Software
Music Software
Personal Info Managers
Religious Software
Scientific Software
Simulation Software
System Software
Transportation Software
Video games, PC games

Credit cards
Financial markets
Human resource management
Payment systems
Real estate
Universities & colleges


Dietary supplements
Medical equipment
Weight loss

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