In the picturesque region of Southern France, there is a ship-shaped building that stares lonely between the railroad and the old road to Perpignan.
Built in a lavish Art Deco style,Hotel Belvédère du Rayon Vert in Cerbère had it all, from ballroom through its own theater to a tennis court, and is now abandoned and lonely.
The Art Deco marvel was built by the Perpignan architect, Léon Baille between 1928 and 1932.
Built to resemble an ocean liner, it served for tourists to have luxurious overnight while they wait for their train.
The passengers while waiting for their train, could spend a night in the ship-shaped hotel, dine in the Art Deco dining room, maybe watch a movie in the theater or play tennis on the roof.
Its glory days were brief, with the outbreak of the Spanish war , the borders were closed and that sadly lead the rail traffic to its decline.
José Zamora, an artist illustrator, designer, and writer, was a resident of the Hotel, he painted murals on the interior walls of the building in compensation for his unpaid bill.
Folks on Trip Advisor love it:
We first discovered Cerbère after I had seen photo of The Belvedere, and then visited every year at least twice.
We have stayed in the hotel many times and loved the slightly ad-hoc nature of the rooms, the beautiful cinema and untouched since the 30s dining room.
The best ‘suite’ we stayed in was one that has a dual sea and train track view, with all the associated sounds – yes you have to like trains, sea and wind (the very exciting Tramontagne) to truly appreciate staying in this wonderment of Belle epoche architecture.
Very helpful ‘concierge’ to show you around and worth coming for the brilliant art film festival in October.
In 1987, the building was protected under a list of historic monuments .
Part of the building has been brought back into use as apartments, with some original features. The building is open to visitors most afternoons.