ST. TROPEZ, France ( TheStreet) -- Among trendy Paris hotels appealing to hip-hop stars and actress fashionistas, Hotel Sezz has long been a favorite. Now, as the latest in a wave of Parisian hoteliers invading St. Tropez, Hotel Sezz Saint-Tropez is a hit -- and it doesn't even officially open until Bastille Day, July 14.Just last year the owners of Murano Hotels & Resorts (Murano Paris, Murano Marrakech, KUBE Paris) debuted the boutique Kube St. Tropez with its Grey Goose-sponsored ICE Bar and one of the town's only sea-facing swimming pools. Two years before that, designer Patrick Jouin (Jules Verne, Alessi, Alain Ducasse) refurbished the Hotel Benkirai to local acclaim. But owner Shahe Kalaidjian, architect Jean-Jacques Ory and designer Christophe Pillet have matched their inspired takes on resort concepts along the French Riviera. Hotel Sezz makes its home well outside St. Tropez's coveted port, where the Byblos Hotel rules supreme and the restaurant Cristina Saulini has made a splashy debut. It's along a narrow two-way residential street, down winding back roads offering easier access to beach clubs such as Tahiti than to town, and it makes the most of the setting: a walled property accessed through stylized hedges and sliding gate drawn around a futuristic swimming pool and outdoor bar. Sezz St. Tropez has one-story architecture rare to local hotels (although not to its stately neighbors, such as the Benkirai). It hugs the ground around that sleek pool, with its infinity edges and central cubist stone element. A pristine lobby with metal-framed walls of glass allow the outdoors and indoors to blend among Pillet-designed furnishings, Emeco chairs and lounge furnishings nodding toward modish '50s design. In lieu of red carpet, natural stone floors lead to Colette, a white-glove eatery that, open to hotel guests and nonguests alike, has become the buzz of the St. Tropez summer season. Colette is led by three-star Michelin chef Pierre Gagnaire, who -- even if rarely present -- maintains culinary fortitude through contact with local farmers as well as approved food purveyors throughout Provence. The Mediterranean menu is served in a 60-seat dining room with terrace, as well as at poolside and through room service.
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