Realise your dream with an iconic French driving holiday
Few places are as idyllic as the French Riviera, a place where rain doesn’t seem to exist and the long coastal roads are just waiting to be explored. Needless to say, it is a dream destination for any motoring enthusiast who yearns for the sense of freedom that comes from the fresh air and open roads of Southern France.
It is from here that the motorsport experts from Feathers Lifestyle drew their inspiration and, using their extensive experience, put together a two-day classic car holiday package that showcases all that the French Riviera and Monaco have to offer.
As you fly in over snow-covered mountains, seeing the great river Seine and being treated to a glorious view of a bright, blue sea, having rainy old Blighty in the rear-view mirror doesn’t seem all that bad.
After touching down in Nice, Feathers will greet you, take care of your luggage and bring you down to the famous Promenade des Anglais. With the sun dancing across the bright, colourful hoods and your reflection beaming back at you from the newly polished hubcaps you will, for the first time, see the outstanding line-up of 36 classic cars, just waiting for you to take your pick.
“A two-day classic car holiday package that showcases all that the French Riviera and Monaco have to offer”
Among them are such famous marques and models as the Jaguar E-Type Roadster, 1968 Aston Martin DBS 6 Convertible, Ferrari Dino 246 GT, AC Cobra and Alfa Romeo Spider Giulietta. These authentic cars are in pristine condition and are serviced to perform at their very best throughout the experience. The timeless design of these classics is complemented by the beautiful coastal scenery through which you will drive along the way; these cars were made for these iconic roads, winding up to the mountains, making one feel like the lead actor in a 1960s Hollywood film.
Founders of Feathers Lifestyle, Simon Rose, Matt Dietz and James Guess, all have a long history within motorsports. Simon was director of the Porsche Club in the 1990s, Matt is a self-confessed, life-long car addict and James has been a ‘petrolhead’ ever since he bought his first car aged 16. In 2016 he raced in the Ginetta Supercup with six podiums out of six races and has recently raced at the Goodwood’s Members Meeting. Safe to say, you are in good hands when embarking upon this motoring adventure.
“It is all about having fun, there is no point doing it if you do not enjoy it,” explains James of the company’s ethos. “It’s through this passion for motorsports and cars in general that we all met, becoming good friends and developing the business out of that really.”
This spirit of fun and comradeship permeates the business and its offerings, even down to the name. “We were in the pub, and it was called the Feathers,” says Matt, laughing. “Simon’s wife decided on the spot that it would be as perfectly memorable as any other, so here we are, and I must say it’s done us proud!” Simplicity is often the best choice.
Although a relatively new company, Feathers Lifestyle already has a foot firmly in the door of the motorsports holiday world, arranging trips to some of the most famous racing circuits across Europe and beyond, such as the Nürburgring in Germany, Le Mans in France and even ice driving in Iceland.
To offer the very best experience possible they believe in the importance of creating a stress free atmosphere for their travellers, incorporating everything into one seamless package.
“Arranging trips to some of the most famous racing circuits across Europe and beyond, such as the Nürburgring in Germany”
“If you have booked a holiday you don’t want to book your own flight, you don’t want to get a taxi from the airport, you don’t want to work out which hotel,” says James. “It’s a luxury package and what we do is select a package suited to your budget. Everything is laid out for you so you can enjoy you holiday without dealing with the organisational element that always comes with an experience like this.”
Alongside the minutia of their classic car drives, Feathers will also accommodate any special requests you may have, including private plane charter, yacht hire and even helicopter transfers, so that your holiday is as relaxing and comfortable as possible.
Now remember, it’s not a race! This is one Euro break full of moments meant to be savoured and enjoyed – firing up the cars, heading out of Nice and along the archetypal French roads, nothing beats driving with the top down, as the warm air whips by and you begin to test the car’s handling and prowess. This is one for the more discerning petrolhead!
The Drive Itself
The three corniches they are called. Three winding coastal roads tying Nice and Monaco together, with which every man is familiar from their numerous outings on the Silver Screen. There is the Grande Corniche which offers drivers the best sea view, the Moyenne Corniche, which is set at a lower elevation and, skimming the villa-lined waterfront between Nice and Monaco, the Corniche Inférieure.
All of the three can be experienced during the driving experience, before winding up in to the mountains for an exquisite, rustic lunch at a local, hand-selected restaurant, serving the finest in traditional food.
“This is one Euro break full of moments meant to be savoured and enjoyed”
Once you are back on the road, the next stop on the exciting itinerary is an exclusive visit to the Monte Carlo race track before heading off to drive the route of the Monaco Formula 1 Grand Prix circuit – allowing you to put the pedal to the metal on the tracks many of us have only witnessed on television – and all while driving a classic, roaring example of brilliant automotive engineering. The day is then topped off with something for which the Côte d’Azur is particularly famous, a visit to a local vineyard for some wine tasting before an optional chauffeur home.
And after all that? How you spend your evening is entirely up to you. “It all depends on where your interest lies,” says James. “We just leave people to do what they want in the evenings. Some people want to go all out with the French Riviera experience and hit the casino tables in Monaco and others want to stay up in the mountains and enjoy a quiet, relaxing evening. It really depends on the group.”
Whatever your peccadillos, Feathers has a package to suit everyone but, when on a two-day luxury classic car holiday, it is wise to take advantage of every moment and seize the day.