Frank Sinatra, Aristotle and Jackie Onassis, Maria Callas, Princess Grace and Prince Rainier, Jane Mansfield, Maurice Chevalier, Anita Ekberg, Glenn Ford, Charles Aznavour, and Johnny Hallyday – to name just some of the rich and famous that frequented the house that was owned by singer and songwriter, Georges Ulmer and his wife, Betty. Purchased in 1952 and for more than twenty years, the Ulmers hosted and entertained jet-setters on the large, sunny terrace of their home-cum-restaurant/night club, “Chez Georges Ulmer.” Betty took care of the restaurant, while George sang and played guitar on the terrace for guests; reportedly Frank Sinatra occasionally sang there too.
After the death of her husband in 1989, Betty decided to sell the house in 2002, and for the past 11 years, thanks to owners Catherine and Patrick Bouvet, this renovated, lovely stone villa has been operating as a successful and charming B&B, named “Les Terrasses du Soleil.” I recently had the honor to spend time on the terrace with Catherine, re-living the bygone days of this historical place, imagining myself dining and dancing there as well.
The uniqueness of this Chambre d’Hôte/B&B is not only it’s jet-set past, but also the beautiful views from the grand terrace, and the homemade and varied breakfast specialties created by Catherine (yogurt, jams, unique pancakes, just to name a few). There are two bedrooms and two suites in this three-story hidden treasure, situated near Nice in the medieval village of Haut-de-Cagnes-sur-Mer. This beautiful B&B is charming and has a warm, welcoming ambiance for year-round accommodation, except when closed from November 1st to December 20th.
“PIGALLE” – Composed in 1946 and sung by Georges Ulmer (video link)
Photos credit: Terrasses du Soleil website
Hi Kim, I actually met Betty Ulmer in Nice as she was having her lunch of oysters and champagne at La Taverne de Nice and she is quite a character. She had told me her entire story and her and her husband were quite the jet set couple back in her day. Glad to see the spirit of her villa living on.
How wonderful – they must have both been quite the characters! Thanks so much, Juanita, for commenting.
That looks so beautiful! Love the idea of being able to live more or less outdoors!
Their terrace is absolutely stunning, not to mention the views!
Thanks for very interesting posting, Kim. Beautiful photos, and a special treat to hear “Pigalle” sung by its composer … all the more special for us longtime residents of the rue Pigalle!
You’re welcome and glad you enjoyed it – What a special coincidence indeed!
Great song..Quite a smile he has!!!
Thanks – from what I have heard, they were a very charming and charismatic couple!
It has a very elegant feel.
Thanks, Jennifer. Surprisingly, it’s also really quite charming and feels ‘homey’ – the owner is very friendly and welcoming.
What a great place. Is Betty still alive?
Merci – She was in 2008 and I believe she still is from what I have researched.