|La Bergerie||Self Catering||Sunday||7||12||4|
La Bergerie is a spacious and charming property set in over 7 acres of fields and woods, deep in the French countryside. Chic furnishings make it an ideal home from home. The accommodation is spread over 3 separate buildings: the main house, the studio and the cottage.
The main house has a kitchen, dining room, sitting room, 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and a large veranda for al fresco dining. The sitting room is very spacious and furnished with comfortable sofas and antique furniture. It has a large stone fireplace. Above it there is a loggia which houses a tv, dvd and satellite Freeview (UK channels). The kitchen is very well equipped. It opens onto the main veranda with a large teak table and chairs. The veranda looks out onto a medieval castle offering spectacular views throughout the day and night, as the castle is lit after dark. The veranda is roofed which is ideal for al fresco dining or escaping from the sun. A couple of steps separate the kitchen from the dining room with its own breakfast terrace. The terrace is sunny during the mornings and in the shade from about 2pm - perfect for breakfast or a morning coffee.
Across the courtyard there is a studio with 2 bedrooms and a smart wet room.
The cottage is located across the front lawn from the main house and has 2 bedrooms, a bathroom, a sitting room and its own veranda overlooking fields and trees. The cottage sitting room has tea and coffee-making facilities. The veranda is shaded by a pergola and has a stone table with chairs - ideal for a glass of wine at sunset as it faces west.
The property has a large private swimming pool armed (13m x 7m) with 2 pool alarms. It is 1 metre deep at the shallow end and 2.2 at the deep end. The pool surround is paved with a grass field all around it. There are sunbeds and umbrellas at one end of the pool with a shaded pergola, sofa and armchairs below it at the other end. There is a picnic table on the grass. The pool is located in the field next to the house and surrounded by trees, lavender and vines.
The kitchen is very well equipped with a cooker, microwave, dishwasher, coffee-maker, pots, pans and all sorts of essential utensils. It is a fully-working kitchen with a large American-style fridge-freezer plus ice-machine. There is a pantry stocked with basic provisions. A few steps down from the kitchen is a dining room which can be used on a rare cool evening. There is a large wine fridge in the dining room.
The main living room is very spacious and airy with a double-height ceiling. There is a big stone fireplace and plenty of comfortable sofas and armchairs. It opens onto the veranda on the one side and the courtyard on the other. Leading off, there is a small side entrance with a telephone room and a separate toilet. Above the fireplace there is a loggia containing a media/snug room.
All the bedrooms have comfortable single or king size beds. Most of the single beds can be joined together to make king size beds which makes the accommodation extremely flexible.
All bedrooms have bedside tables, lamps and ceiling fans.
There are lots of shelves full of books for holiday reading.
In typical French style, there are wooden shutters on all windows.
There are 4 main bathrooms and one separate toilet. Two of the bathrooms have a bath and shower combination. One of the bathrooms is ensuite and the others are shared by 2 bedrooms each. There is an additional toilet and shower in the utility room off the hall in the main house. The utility room houses the heating system and a washing machine. There is no dryer but there are clothes lines under the vines next to the courtyard.
In the summer there is plenty of hot water for all 3 buildings.
In addition to the tv, dvd and satellite channels, there are 2 stereos, 1 in the living room and 1 in the dining room, plus a rack of CDs to suit all tastes. The cupboard in the tv room houses numerous board games. There is no wi-fi due to signal weakness but there are many internet cafes in Fumel and surrounding area. The English housekeeper can arrange many additional activities such as: in-house wine tasting, gourmet suppers, picnic lunches and others. Keen walkers can make use of trail maps left in the house and guided tours are available on request. Full list of other activities like fishing, kayaking, wine tasting, historical visits etc. are available at the house.
The house is surrounded by lawns, fields and woods. There are numerous flower beds and tubs full of geraniums. A large trampoline and a badminton set can provide hours of outdoor fun. There are lots of fruit trees; figs, varieties of plums, apples, pears can be picked and eaten when ripe. There is a herb bed running alongside the breakfast terrace stocked with rosemary, thyme, basil and other essential herbs.
Cars can be parked on the driveway by the main house
The property is suitable for most visitors but we would not recommend it for wheelchair users as the bedrooms and bathrooms are on many levels.
This property is a second home and has been for 20 years.
|Year property purchased||1997|
|Why this location?||It is in a stunning part of France. It's green, it's picturesque, it has a fascinating history with lots of interesting things to visit and the local produce, both food and wine, is of exceptional quality.|
|Unique benefits of property||It is very large so can accommodate a great number of people yet the layout allows for considerable personal privacy. It overlooks a medieval castle which we'd say is pretty unique|
For example, Monsempron-Libos market on Thursday mornings. Full list of local market days and towns is available at the house. Continually updated information on recommended restaurants, places to visit and things to do can also be found in the main house.
This was a very beautiful house and area although more remote than we thought when booking. The car is a necessity. The weather was terrible which led to much flooding of the cottage and areas in the main house . The house overseer was very sympathetic but there was little she could do although a builder repaired the leak in the roof over the living area in the main house.
The pool was a godsend because the children spent time in it even when it was raining. I could not now recommend La Bergerie because of the problems we encountered. But if one had lovely weather then it would be a good base to visit other areas.
I am very sorry that the bad weather spoilt your holidays at La Bergerie. The sun shone the whole summer - it was one of the hottest summers on record - but unfortunately it rained, and poured, for 4 days out of 7 for that one week. Even though I would have loved for you to have beautiful sunshine I cannot control the weather. I feel we did everything in our power to minimise the discomfort - the rain fell with such intensity that the roof in the cottage started to leak - I phoned several times, the housekeeper, Victoria, went to see you every day and organised immediate repairs.
During our correspondence before your holidays and numerous phone conversations I did state that the house is set in the countryside and the closest walkable restaurants are about 15-20 minutes away at the bottom of the Chateau de Bonaguil. The closest town, Fumel, is a 5 minute drive away as are the supermarkets. A car is a necessity as it would be with any rural location property.