Events in Lou Calen

Lou Calen invites you to enjoy our unique and fun events based within the hotel’s three hectare estate in the heart of Cotignac, whether at the Jardin Secret restaurant, Didier’s wine bar, or the microbrewery bar, La Tuf. Engage with the many aspects of true Provencal living through these fun experiences, all the while meeting local people and discovering local practices.

At the moment...

Saturday March 2nd

Ceramics Workshop

Potter and ceramics artist in Cotignac, Inès Ciccone practices throwing pottery with the aim of giving life to stoneware pieces, always drawing her inspiration from natural plants and minerals. During a 3 1/2 hour workshop, Inès will share three modelling techniques to make a cup, a plate or a bowl.

Location : Lou Calen

Times : 10am to 12:30pm

Cost : 85€ (materials and apron provided)

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

Sunday March 10th

Cooking Wild Plants

Wild plants are a key cooking ingredient for our chef Benoit Witz, who opens his kitchen to teach you how to work them in a creative culinary way. Vera, our favourite herbalist, guide you to pick these plants in Lou Calen’s gardens from 2pm to 4pm, before joining the chef for a cooking class.

Location : Jardin Secret restaurant

Times : 2pm to 6pm (2h botanical walk)

Tarifs : 150€/person

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

Saturday March 16th

Drawing & Painting Workshop

Provence is an inexhaustible source of creativity, where Gilles Dugenet invites you to dive in and find your inspiration. Using simple drawing and painting techniques, the artist will encourage you to create a series of small drawings and paintings in a sketchbook, that can be cherished long.

Location : Lou Calen

Times : 9am to 12pm

Cost : 65€ (material provided)

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

Saturday March 30th

Botanical Walk

Are you interested in learning about wild plants? Vera, local to the region, gives a tour of the Lou Calen gardens. Guided by her studies in phytotherapy and herboristry, Vera shares her passion for every wild plant. Join her to discover these celebrated Provençal plants and their forgotten virtues.

Location : Lou Calen

Times : 10:30am to 12:30pm

Cost : 25€/person

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

From 3rd to 6th April

Yoga & Ayurveda Retreat

In India, every spring season is welcomed with “Holi”- the festival of colour. It celebrates the expansion of light, the end of winter. This 4-day and 3-night retreat, combining yoga practice, meditation and Ayurvedic treatments, is an opportunity to  revitalise yourself in the heart of the Var region.

Location : Lou Calen

With : Mireye Vidal and Véra Schultz

Cost :from €595 half board

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

Saturday April 13th

Ceramics Workshop

Potter and ceramics artist in Cotignac, Inès Ciccone practices throwing pottery with the aim of giving life to stoneware pieces, always drawing her inspiration from natural plants and minerals. During a 3 1/2 hour workshop, Inès will share three modelling techniques to make a cup, a plate or a bowl.

Location : Lou Calen

Times : 10am to 12:30pm

Cost : 85€ (materials and apron provided)

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

Saturday April 20th

Drawing & Colours Workshop

With her rich experience in the field of art, Sophie Anais Sanderson guides her students to develop their artistic flair through the craft of drawing. During her three hours workshop, she will teach the basics of drawing as well as and colouring with coloured pencils.

Location : Lou Calen

Times : 9am to 12pm

Cost : 65€ (material provided)

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

Previous events

Cooking Lobster

Lou Calen now offers a cooking class with our fantastic chef! Benoit Witz invites you into his Jardin Secret restaurant kitchen to learn how to cook lobster. You will leave full of culinary ideas, as well as a hands-on three-course menu for two people… and more precious cooking advice.

Location : Jardin Secret restaurant

Times : 4pm to 6pm

Cost : 200€/person

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

The Secret Song of Plants

Did you know that all the plants emit vibrations to communicate? And did you know that this electrical activity can be converted into musical notes? Botanical music therapist, Sabrine SC&YOU can guide you towards a meditative state and fully experience this sensory opportunity.

Location : Lou Calen

Times : 11pm to 12:30pm

Cost : 30€/person

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

The Truffle Harvest

For over 25 years, the Canut family has been growing black truffles on their farm in Aups. Every winter Patrick and his daughter Lisa wander through their oak plantation, guided by their dogs, to harvest the truffle. Take part in the fascinating art of truffle hunting, before treating yourself to tasting your finds!

Location : Aups

Days and times : Monday > Wednesday / 2pm to 3:30pm

Cost : 25€/person

Reservation : Booking is mandatory

Oursinade

‘Oursinade’ is one of the most important culinary traditions of Provence. At the start of each year, sea urchins cluster around the Côte Bleue, the Rivera sea coast which stretches from Marseille to Martigues. Benoit Witz is joining the celebration by shining their culinary spotlight on the sea urchin for a buffet.

Valentine's Day

Chef Witz and his team bring their passion for local culinary delights by crafting refined and spectacular dishes that will seduce with every bite. Our menu offers langoustine, John Dory whitefish, and tender veal to celebrate the most romantic evening of the year, where love is in the air as well as on the plate.

Louisiana Style

Benoit Witz welcomes guest chef Patrick Périé for a themed evening with a four course menu. With 40 years’ experience across the world, ten of which were spent at the Méridien in New Orléans, this celebrated French chef is back in his homeland and ready to serve a delicious loiusiana cook.

Cooking Truffle

This masterclass will take place after a truffle hunting demonstration with specially-trained truffle dogs. Meet at 2pm at the Canut family’s farm in Aups (20 minutes from Cotignac), before meeting chef Benoit Witz at 4pm in the kitchen of the Jardin Secret to learn how to cook with black truffles.

Auvergne Cheese Day

Calling all cheeselovers! This day is designed for all who celebrate good French cheese. Our chef Benoit Witz hosts Dominique Prugne – two-time world champion at the Tours International Cheese Festival – for a menu dedicated to fine Auvergne cheeses and the secrets behind the art of their cheesemaking.

An Evening of Truffles

This winter, our chef Benoit Witz is dedicating several evening menus to the black truffle. They are found locally in Aups, the region’s capital of the ‘tuber melanosporum’, and are known for being particularly tasty. Come and enjoy the dishes specially crafted in celebration of this precious ‘black diamond’.

Festive Feasts

In its 19th century house decorated with the magic of Christmas, the Jardin Secret restaurant opens its doors for the end of year festivities. Chef Benoit Witz and his team have crafted special menus with seasonal ingredients and dishes enhanced by the delights of the Provencal region.

Gong & Sounds Session

Come and try an exclusive “Gong Bath” a soothing sound therapy straight from Nepal, led by Daniela, a Vinyasa and Kundalini Yoga instructor. During this session you will discover the many benefits of sound vibrations through gongs, Tibetan bowls and voice, to prove a wonderful musical experience.

Location : Lou Calen

The Fascinant Week-end

The Jardin Secret restaurant celebrates the 10th edition of the Fascinant Weekend. Every 3rd weekend in October, the vineyards of France come alive for this food and wine celebration festival. There will be a decade of delights to be shared in a menu specially designed for the occasion.

Soap Box Race

Hear ye, hear ye! There’s a huge dollop of fun on the way with the return of the soap box race. The race will barrel down the Notre-Dame de Grâces road across two timed runs, and the finish line will offer a refreshment bar with DJ and a prize giving ceremony at Le Tailleur de bière. Let your imagination run free!

Location : Lou Calen

Classic en Provence

The Fanny Mendelssohn Artists have prepared an innovative programme to fit the unique atmosphere of the hotel surrounded by nature and steeped in history. Be it during a musical breakfast at the Jardin Secret or a concert in the conservatrory, the five young musicians will enchant you with their talent.

Location : Lou Calen

Lavender Spindle Workshop

Come and learn about the Provençal tradition of lavender spindle-crafting. Get stuck in to this charming craft that encloses the pretty lavender flowers inside their stems to preserve their wonderful scent. Discover how to gather them, how to sort them, and how to weave it all together with a beautiful ribbon.

Location : Lou Calen

Essential Oils Workshop

Do you know about the power of aromatherapy? Mélanie Debant, grower of aromatic plants, is here to teach you how to self-heal your minor ailments or those of your loved ones with the use of 10 essential oils, and to guide you towards the craft of a 10ml roll-on essential oil bottle.

Location : Lou Calen

Dinner with Huguette Caren

Benoit Witz welcomes Huguette Caren, the previous owner of Lou Calen and valued guardian of special Provençal recipes. Huguette’s spectacular cooking contributed to the hotel’s famous reputation in the 70s, 80s and 90s. To keep this iconic legacy alive, Huguette has passed on all her secrets to our chef.

Plant Painting Workshop

Did you know that you can make ink from vegetables and their tinctorial plants? Anna Piquardt is here to show you how. Come and learn how to transform well-known plants into watercolour paints, and then decorate your very own postcard with them. A wonderfully creative and personalised gift for a loved one!

Location : Lou Calen

Open House Day

Lou Calen opens its doors to you! Our team is happy to welcome you once again to make you discover the establishment and to share together a convivial moment during which we will be able to exchange around the various projects related to the domain.

Location : Lou Calen

Patrick Périé's come back

Exceptional opening of the Jardin Secret restaurant where we will welcome the chef Patrick Périé. With 40 years’ experience across the world, ten of which were spent at the Méridien in New Orléans, this celebrated French chef is back in his homeland and ready to serve a spectacular meal full of delicious discoveries.

The Olive Harvest

Récolte des olives
For a total immersion in the Provencal tradition, Lou Calen’s gardeners invite you to participate in the olive harvest each morning at the estate. Matured olives may be used in cooking but can also be transformed into so-called “fruity black oil|. Discover the secrets behind this emblematic culture of Provence.

Location : Lou Calen

Lebanese Cuisine

Venture on a culinary journey into the heart of the Middle East. Chef Benoit Witz invites Mirna Cortas into his kitchen to explore the many rich and varied flavours of Lebanon. Mirna, of Greek-Lebanese origin, looks forward to celebrating her inherited know-how of traditional cuisine from Zahlé, her hometown in the Lebanon mountains.

Japanese Cuisine

Susana Iwase was born in Tokyo, the sushi capital, and brings her experience of traditional Japanese cooking blended with her years of working in Californian restaurants. She will collaborate with Benoit Witz to bring an evening of Japanese cuisine.

Gathering Saffron

Nestled in the midst of the restanques a unique spice grows naturally. In our region, flowering begins in October and lasts for a month while the harvest reaps rich rewards. Sabine and Jean will guide you and explore more herbs to ensure you fully understand the culture and nature of organic saffron growing.