Chapelle du Rosaire

Chapelle du Rosaire, Vence

Chapelle du Rosaire
4
Churches & Cathedrals
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Tuesday
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.0
597 reviews
Excellent
318
Very good
163
Average
62
Poor
21
Terrible
33

Joanne F
Tampa, FL703 contributions
Jan 2020
Visited this beautiful chapel and enjoyed reading (in English) about the idea behind its construction. It is unique in its art because of it's simplicity. The light shining through the stained glass windows gave it a mystical glow. You could feel a spirit inside. It was magical.
Written January 31, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jonathan H
Canterbury, UK25 contributions
Jan 2013 • Family
A really moving experience -this is a very small, simple chapel, still run by the Dominican sisters who give short tours, included in the price of 5 euros. It wont take more than 45 mins to see it, but it is well worth a detour
Written January 26, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

altadesigns
Akron Ohio55 contributions
Dec 2011 • Solo
We took the bus to Vence from Nice - a bargain at 1 Euro each way. This small chapel is amazing. Matisse designed every detail.
Written January 21, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

EgyptophileEngland
Burnley, UK184 contributions
May 2012 • Couples
This incredible chapel is simple and beautiful! We caught the 400 bus from the Gare Routiere and used our bus and tram pass (only €14 for 7 days) though the cost is only €1 for the journey. There was no direction sign from the bus station to the chapel but the locals were delightfully obliging and pointed us to the right road. Once we were in the right direction, there WERE signposts and after about ten minutes of a walk, we came upon the chapel. There are steep steps down to the entrance and a fee of €4, As we opened the door to the chapel we saw that there were approximately another 10 or 12 other people sitting in the pews listening to a nun speaking. We quietly took our seats and marvelled at the beauty of the place. We did not have any of the problems which other reviewers found after not checking the opening times, finding it closed due to 'extraordinary circumstances' or disturbance from any large groups. The people there when we were seemed to be as enchanted by their surroundings as we were and everyone gave the chapel the respect it deserved, As some of the people moved on to see the vestments, the num asked where we were from and continuted to explain what she had said in French in English. She said we could ask any questions we wanted and we all did. The chapel was closing at 11.30am and with great gentleness and kindness we were encouraged to start moving through the rest of the exhibition places. To the reviewer who said there was no toilet there is - but you obviously didn't ask where it was. To me, the visit to the Chapelle du Rosaire was one of the highlights not only of our day to St Pauls and Vence but to the whole Cote d'Azur. The sunlight streaming through Matisse's stained glass window is simply beautiful.
Written May 18, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

bdt61
San Francisco, CA367 contributions
the Chapel itself is a delight, Small and bright, clean lines with beautiful colors. Thoughtful, practical applications. The podium was designed at an angle to view the entire surface, thereby presiding and speaking to one and all in the room.
The visit included a small presentation in English by one of the sisters. We were then, shuttle to the next room to view photographs of its erection with Matisse.
The Minus: The Chapel is set on a panoramic hill over looking Vence in to its short proximity. We were sequestered in the church. Not allowed on the grounds of this remarkable garden surrounding the chapel. The sisters were aloof and barely attentive. The hours are limited . Do check before making the trek to visit.
Written July 18, 2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Bess941
Orlando, FL50 contributions
Apr 2015 • Friends
The Matisse Chapel, otherwise known as Chapelle du Rosaire, or Chapel of the Rosary, is a tiny place, but one of the most beautiful and moving artistic creations I've seen. Matisse created it -- the architecture, the artworks, the furnishings, even the priest's vestments -- after befriending a young woman who became a Dominican nun and told him that her order needed a chapel. The chapel itself is one small room, all white, with stained-glass windows in blue, yellow and green on two sides and white ceramic walls, on which the artist drew in black, on the other two sides.

In an adjoining gallery are studies for the work in the chapel, which are fascinating because you see the artist reducing everything he did to utter simplicity, as well as displays of the vestments he designed.

There is lots of symbolism in everything he created here, and we listened to a terrific little explanation in English by a volunteer there. (A nun gave a little talk in French about the time we arrived.) Even though I am not at all religious, I found his work terrifically moving and the place so peaceful.

One word of warning: You will be asked to be quiet and not to take photos, but not everybody heeds the warning, and if you are there with a noisy group your visit may be spoiled. We were lucky to miss two busloads of tourists, who arrived just as we were leaving.

The Chapel sits just outside the center of Vence, a bit away from but within walking distance of the old part of town.
Written April 28, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Anca G
Bucharest, Romania31 contributions
Aug 2014 • Couples
Oh my, where do I begin? Firstly, the chapel is very out of the way, it is quite a long away from where the bus leaves you in Vence and there is nothing to see on the way to it. The old town/village is in a different part of Vence. So if you are on a tight schedule, you should consider the delay.

Secondly, the chapel is very, very small. Sure, the name suggests this, as it is not a church, but still, for the EUR 6 entry fee you'd expect at least something to feast your eyes on but there hardly is such a thing. There is a reason why they have a strict policy against taking any photos inside the chapel and I bet my hat that reason is so that potential visitors don't get to see how disappointing it is.

When we came in, there was a woman speaking to the visitors, which we assumed was some sort of guide employed by the establishment to keep you there for a few minutes so that you don't feel like you've totally wasted your money. However, she was in the middle of her presentation (in typical French-accent English) when we arrived and she carried on as others entered the chapel. So, depending on your luck, you could enjoy 10 minutes or 5 seconds of the presentation, because no-one told you when it had started or how much longer it would last. You just came in and saw a woman talking. Or not, as the case may be.

The chapel is extremely small and consisting of white walls and empty space in a proportion of 90%. The other 10% is as follows: a couple of very thin glass insertions in 3 block colours, a white door, a portion of white tiles containing black drawings in what appears to be black marker by Matisse, one table with white table cloth and a few other "religious" objects on it. You cannot go near the table. "Everything" was personally designed by Matisse. I say that between quotation marks because it is so very little. A handful of items which takes about three minutes to see, ponder about and leave.

Once the woman finishes her speech, you are led in the typical herd-like fashion to the "gallery", which features a few priest clothes designed by Matisse (they are in colours such as pink), a few sketches and pictures and, of course, to the gift shop. The backyard seems very beautiful but entrance there is denied.

I am sure the chapel is of interest to hardcore art fans and historians. Nonetheless, to the average art enthusiast with only a moderate appreciation of Matisse, it is only a waste of time and money.
Written August 20, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Nola-In-France
Vence, France5 contributions
Sep 2013 • Friends
The Chapel Matisse is such a special place. It's simplicity and beauty are breathtaking. If you are a fan of Matisse's work, and perhaps even if you don't know his work, it should be seen. The Dominican nuns lives next door to the chapel, and it is they who take care of it every day. Matisse loved Vence. It was a haven for him during WWII, and toward the end of his life, Vence was the last place where he was inspired to continue creating his masterpieces. In the 70s I lived in the area (Tourrettes-sur-Loup) for 8 years, so I have visited this jewel of a little chapel many, many times over the years. There's a Matisse Museum in Nice which is also stunning and worth seeing.
Written December 9, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

GYWX
Wexford, Ireland769 contributions
Jan 2013 • Couples
We arrived at 2pm in time for it to open, and after a 5 euro entry fee a Dominican Sister described the windows and painted tiles to us. Photographs are not allowed, so all we have is a memory of the low early January sun bathing the wall of St. Dominic in stained glass light, making it look itself like a window. There is also a set of preparatory drawings, priests' vestments, and two models showing the evolution of Matisse's thought. It is a good example of how stripping away details leads to a purer expression.
Tip: Check the opening times carefully before going there. Starting from the bus stop, take the gently sloping main road out to the chapel, a 10 minutes walk. Don't take the Google Maps apparently direct route from the old town to the chapel, unless you are fit and want an interesting descent into the valley of the Lubaine and back up the other side.

Vence is only a 1 euro, 1 hour, bus trip from Nice, I don't know how long the French will be able to afford to subsidise public travel like that.
Written January 12, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

oystein s
78 contributions
Jul 2011 • Family
This is a chapel and it is beautiful in all its simplicity. You would like to sit down for some contemplation. But you will be disturbed by the entrance fee and also guided tourist groups. A pity that it just can be a chapel. Well, beautiful anyway.
Written December 15, 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Chapelle du Rosaire

Chapelle du Rosaire is open:
  • Tue - Tue 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Tue - Sat 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
  • Thu - Fri 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
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