Cycling hotel review: Hôtel La Jetée, Ile-de-Ré

Published by Lyn on 4 November 2017

We stayed at the Hotel La Jetée in Saint-Martin-de-Ré on Ile-de-Ré during a recent cycling holiday. Here's our review.

Hotel Le Jetee, Saint-Martin-de-Ré

Hôtel La Jetée
23 Quai Georges Clemenceau, 
17410 Saint-Martin-de-Ré, Ile-de-Ré
Charente-Maritime (Nouvelle-Aquitaine) 
Book online

So the picture above is roughly what we woke up to every day while we were staying at the Hôtel La Jetée on Ile-de-Ré. We stayed three nights, using the hotel as a base while we explored the island by bike. And we couldn't have asked for anything more in a harbour-side hotel. 

5 things we liked

1. Location
The hotel is right in the centre of Saint-Martin-de-Ré, but far enough away from the main restaurant strip to be on the quieter side of the harbour. We had a lovely room looking out over the water and, as we visited late in October, it was relatively quiet in terms of tourist buzz – harbour rooms may prove noisier in peak season when the island attracts summer crowds, but there are quieter courtyard rooms away from the hustle of the harbour if this is a concern.

The hotel is located within the pedestrianised preccinct, so you'll need a code from hotel reception to access the garage and parking if you're arriving by car. There is free underground parking for small cars (larger cars may struggle to access the tight underground space), plus on-street parking for €15 for 24 hours.   

In Saint-Martin-de-Ré (pictured below at dusk) – and across the entire island – bikes rule the roads. Saint-Martin-de-Ré is an easy (flat) day ride to all the key attractions on Ile-de-Ré, including the oyster farms, salt beds, and the famous lighthouse to the north-west of the island. Just make sure you pack some gloves and a jacket for windy days.  

Saint-Martin-de-Ré

2. The room
We loved our room. It was clean and spacious, the walk-in Italian shower was a treat, and the kids loved their foldout sofa bed. There was a kettle with tea and coffee (not a common occurrence in French hotels), as well as a fridge to store milk and the next day's picnic supplies. The room – as with the hotel throughout – was decorated stylishly with works of art and unique pieces of furniture. It really did feel like a special experience to stay here.

Hotel le Jetee, Saint-Martin-de-Ré 

3. Breakfast
There was everything a cyclist needs for the day on the bike – from cereals and various types of breads, pancakes and pastries through to smoked salmon, a selection of meats and cheeses, yoghurts and fresh fruit. There was even scrambled eggs and bacon. Coffee came via a choice of DIY machine or Nespresso capsules, while there was a massive cupboard full of various teas (helpfully labelled to help you navigate the vast array).

Hotel la Jetee, Ile-de-Re   

Hotel la Jetee, Ile-de-Re

 Hotel la Jetee, Ile-de-Re

4. Friendly staff
The staff here are friendly and multi-lingual. They were very welcoming towards the kids and hugely accommodating when it came to letting us in and out of the bike garage all the time. It's not a huge hotel (there are 24 rooms, each individually designed and decorated), and the staff seemed to know all the guests as they came and went. We forgot to take the 'Do not disturb' sign off the door one day and one of the ladies even apologised for not having broken hotel etiquette to clean our room. Whether it was extra teabags or bike hire, nothing seemed to much trouble for the staff here.   

Hotel La Jetee, Ile-de-Re

Hotel La Jetee, Ile-de-Re

5. Bikey stuff
We arrived with three bikes on the back of the car and hired a fourth from the hotel's fleet (€29 for three days). The bike was robust and ideal for the island's bike paths. Most bikes on the island are regular town bikes or hybrids. While the majority of the island's 100-odd kilometres of bike paths are tarmac, there are stretches of dirt or small-pebbled paths (plus the grassy hills around the forts that the kids loved venturing off on to). We did see a few road bikes out, but they were the exception rather than the rule. The hotel's fleet lives in an enclosed courtyard (there are a dozen or so bikes, as well as a cargo bike for hire). There's also a private garage under the hotel with a dedicated space for guests' bikes (pictured above). The garage is secure and locked via electronic key.  

All in all we loved our stay here and would happily stay here again on a future cycling holiday on Ile-de-Ré. We'd heartily recommend it to other cyclists – and especially those with mini-cyclists in tow.

Hôtel La Jetée
23 Quai Georges Clemenceau, 
17410 Saint-Martin-de-Ré, Ile-de-Ré
Charente-Maritime (Nouvelle-Aquitaine) 
Book online

Maps and GPX files for bike routes on Ile-de-Ré

More hotel options plus bike hire on Ile-de-Ré

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