|La Maison d'Amis||Self Catering||Saturday||1||2||1||See also our other gite which sleeps 4 people|
Le Clos de la Rose is situated in the historic medieval village of Le Puy Notre Dame. It is a charming wine-making village set in a conservation area in the beautiful countryside of the Regional Loire-Anjou-Touraine Natural Park which is great for walking and cycling. Le Puy Notre Dame is designated a “Village de Charme” and a “Petite Cité de Caractère” and is dominated by a massive collegiate church which dates back to the 12th century. The village bakery, where you can get your fresh breakfast croissants and baguettes and other delights, is only a minute's walk away from Le Clos de la Rose. The village also has 2 restaurants and a bar as well as a pharmacy; a hairdresser’s a garage and a Tourist Office which is open in the summer. A much larger selection of supermarkets, shops, bars and restaurants is available only 10 minutes’ drive away in both nearby Doué la Fontaine and Montreuil Bellay. The gîte is well placed for you to visit the beautiful chateaux of the Loire Valley and all the other numerous places of interest in the area.
It is a traditional “Corps de Ferme” (farmstead) with honey coloured limestone buildings surrounding a large courtyard. Many of our outbuildings (some of which date back to the 18th century) were used for wine-making. The courtyard is spacious with a sun terrace, lawn area and trees. We have recently created a new rose garden with a fountain in the courtyard for our guests to enjoy. In addition there is plenty of other outside space where you can laze about and read, either in the sun or in the shade whichever you prefer. There are sunloungers and other chairs for our guests to use. At the end of the courtyard, there is a gate leading to the large secret garden and orchard which is perfect for having fun or relaxing in. It is an ideal place to enjoy a glass or two of your favourite drink as you watch the sun set over the vineyards beyond.
On your arrival, you will be invited to have an aperitif with the owners when you can discuss interesting places to visit and things to do. You will also receive a complimentary welcome pack in the gîte with a few basic food and cleaning essentials. If required, we are happy to provide guests with specially selected food and drink starter packs, at additional cost, but these need to be ordered in advance.
La Maison d'Amis has been awarded 3 stars by Anjou Tourist Board and has been lovingly restored to provide you with comfort and style whilst maintaining its original charm and character. This charming 18th century cottage is listed as being of particular architectural interest by the “Architecte des Bâtiments de France”. It is a cosy cottage, sleeping up to 2 people and lots of character with its traditional beams and original tomette tiled floors. If you need more accommodation it may also be possible to rent La Maison du Vigneron, our other 2 bedroom gite for four people.
The gite, courtyard and grounds are all non-smoking and no pets allowed.
The gite has been furnished and equipped to make your stay as comfortable and stress free as possible.
Although Saturday is our usual changeover day, in mid or low season other days may be possible to arrive and/or depart.
There is an open plan kitchen and lounge/diner. The kitchen is fully-fitted and well equipped including a toaster, ceramic hob, electric oven, fridge, microwave and dishwasher. The dining area has a table and chairs to seat up to 4 people. Outside, there is a patio with a table and chairs where you can enjoy al fresco dining.
The lounge area has a comfy sofa,and coffee-table, English television, dvd/cd player and books to borrow.
The double bedroom has a built-in wardrobe, mirror and hairdryer. There is a separate shower room with wc, washbasin and shower, adjacent to the bedroom.
There is a separate shower room with wc, wash basin and shower.
In cooler seasons, there is central heating with electric radiators available in the gîte for your comfort.
We have English television in the gite and lots of books and some dvd films available for your use. There is also a selection of local guide books available for you to borrow from us.
In the grounds, there are a variety of trees, mature shrubs and roses. We also have sunloungers, parasols, garden tables and chairs for the use of all our guests. There are lots of different sunny and shady areas in the gardens and orchard where you can relax in and a large bbq available for all of our guests to use. We also have a small pool in a secluded sunspot where you can cool off as the temperature rises.
The courtyard offers our guests secure, private parking, which is ideal for guests with cherished modern or classic cars or bikes.
The gite has been sensitively restored to retain its original features and character which regrettably creates limitations on accessibility for wheelchair users. The door to La Maison d'Amis, which is a 200 year old listed building, is fairly narrow with 2 steps down to the lounge/dining room and there is also a step up to the shower. We have had a few guests with reduced mobility stay in this gite, without any problems as the rooms are all on one level once you get inside. (If you need more information, we are happy to discuss this with you in more detail and send you more detailed photos.)
We have a no-smoking policy and no pets are allowed.
This gite provides an excellent base for sightseeing, cycling or walking for adults.
In the courtyard, there is a utility room with a toilet, sink, washing machine, tumble dryer, iron and ironing board for our guests to use.
When want to contact the outside world, you have free access to wi-fi broadband on-site.
We have been Francophiles ever since we started touring France over 20 years ago. Since then, we have made frequent visits here, often in a classic car enjoying the quiet country roads at a more leisurely pace. As a result of this, we also developed a great love of the country, its lifestyle and many strong friendships here. After working for many years in England (Bill in construction and Letsie in the NHS), we finally decided to take the plunge and to settle permanently in France.
|Year property purchased||2012|
|Why this location?||Our search for somewhere special repeatedly brought us back to this area and to this historic village in particular. After many months of searching, we were eventually fortunate in finding our new home which is now called Le Clos de la Rose. Here we continue to appreciate all the things that drew us to France in the first place: the wonderful food and wine, the beautiful countryside, the warmth of the people and the milder climate. We hope you will come here to enjoy them too.|
|Unique benefits of property||We are surrounded by vineyards as far as the eye can see and we offer you respite from your busy lives in a pleasant environment with its gardens, orchard and swimming pool. If you want to be more active, there are lots of different things to see and do locally. If you have any special requirements during your stay, please let us know and we will do our best to meet them. Le Clos de la Rose is an excellent base from which to explore the surrounding region and there are many excellent destinations. We can recommend various itineraries to help you tour the area. If however you prefer to be independent we will always respect your privacy.|
Doué la Fontaine’s BIOPARC is a unique troglodyte site located in a quarry, covering 38 acres, with 1,200 animals from 120 different species. The BIOPARC strongly supports biodiversity conservation. By considering their animals as ambassadors of their wild cousins, the BIOPARC initiates or supports actions in the field. 41 of these species are on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of threatened species, classified such as vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered. Twelve of their species are among the most critically endangered species in the world.
Local wine tasting visits are enjoyable ways to learn more about the region and its produce. We have been carrying out extensive research on your behalf since we moved to the village and are now happy to offer wine tastings featuring a selection of different types and styles of wine from an excellent selection of local producers to meet all budgets. We can also arrange the purchase of a variety of local wines on your behalf if required, or for you to visit the producer yourself to learn more. Please contact us ahead of your arrival if you would like to enjoy a wine tasting during your stay.
There is a great diversity of wines, to suit all tastes produced by the 50 or so wine producers in the immediate area around Le Puy Notre Dame with different still reds, whites and roses and also sparkling whites, reds and roses. The 3 main grape varieties most commonly used are Chenin Blanc, Cabernet Franc, and Gamay, and these are sometimes complemented by Cabernet Sauvignon. The local appellations in the village include Saumur Puy-Notre-Dame, Saumur-Champigny. Saumur Blanc, Saumur Rouge, Coteaux de Saumur, Saumur Brut and Cabernet de Saumur.
There is a 170 kilometre 'Route Touristique du Vignoble de l'Anjou' which takes you through the vineyards, as well as to the Anjou Vine and Wine museum in Saint Lambert du Lattay. It is a lovely route to take to see where the wine of the area is grown and it passes through the village of Le Puy Notre Dame. The various stages of the route can be followed by car or by bike, on foot or on horseback and some even by train.
There are a wide variety of activities on offer in this area for those who want to do something a bit more active during their stay. The Loire-Anjou-Touraine Regional Park is one of the biggest regional parks in France and a great place to explore on foot or by bike. This is a haven for all kinds of wildlife, with at least 200 species of bird recorded in the park, including rare ones not usually seen in England. The park is also home to some local species of dragonflies and has lots of different types of butterfly. This area serves to preserve the area's wildlife and heritage by the creation of cycle and walking routes. It has developed a series of themed circular walks known as ‘Sentiers d’Interprétation’ with information boards which are easy to follow. These include ‘The Life of a Vineyard’, ‘The Willow Tree and Basket Making’, ‘The Influence of River Flooding’, ‘Tufa Rocks’ and ‘Coppicing’.
You can enjoy the countryside by following one of a number of local trails marked out in and beyond Le Puy Notre Dame. Le Puy-Notre-Dame, has 4 marked trails (4 to 40 km) through the vineyards in the surrounding hamlets and lanes. Within the Parc Naturel Régional Anjou-Touraine, the Winegrowers Association has created a circuit Interpretation Wine, 3.7 km walking trail lined with eight interactive panels and explanatory (French-English) work the vineyard throughout the year.
If you are feeling more energetic you can follow one of the long-distance footpaths (called Les Sentiers de Grande Randonnée). Two of these that pass through Saumur are the GR3 which runs along the River Loire and the G36 which follows the old Santiago de Compostela pilgrim route from Normandy to the Pyrenees.
There are a number of lovely rivers and lakes nearby where you can enjoy water sports and fishing. The Layon River meanders through the town Les Verchers sur Layon and there are also 2 small lakes where fishing and leisure activities are available. The River Thouet, runs through the town of Montreuil-Bellay and is popular for fishing as well as canoeing. At St Martin de Sanzay, La Ballastiere is a lake of 10 hectares which was a former quarry. Argenton-Chateau has Lake Hautibus which is a great venue for swimming, fishing and all kinds of nautical sports such as pedaloes, sailing and canoeing.
Canoeing: There is a Canoe club at Saumur which arranges kayak trips on the Loire and another club in Montreuil-Bellay which offers various different trips.
Boating: There are 3 types of traditional Loire boats: the lighter flat bottomed boats - called gabardes or gabarres, the toue cabanée and futreaux. Go back in time on the River Loire by hiring a traditional flat-bottomed boat, learn about its history and view the châteaux. You can hire one of these boats from the pretty towns of Monsoreau or Candes-Saint-Martin.
For centuries, men carved out the soft tuffeau limestone locally to build houses, châteaux and churches, leaving behind a series of underground tunnels and caves. This hidden underground world stretching for more than 1,000 km is now used predominantly for wine production and to cultivate mushrooms. The caves are also now used as museums, restaurants, shops, and hotels.
There are over 300 enchanting châteaux to choose from in the Loire Valley: these include the elegant Château de Chenonceau which spans the River Cher, Chambord which is the largest château in the valley, Château d'Azay-le-Rideau which is set on an island in the middle of the Indre river, Château d'Amboise with Leonardo da Vinci's tomb and Villandry Château with its beautiful gardens.
A favourite outing of ours is visit the aircraft museum near Angers, which is dedicated to private aviation. Espace Air Passion has 3,500 m2 of indoor collections devoted to light civil and military aircraft, seaplanes, gliders, amateur aircraft and model aircraft. The history of aviation since 1908, is told through some 40 aircraft, some of which are still in flyable condition today.
William 9th, Duke of Aquitaine is said to have brought back the girdle of the Virgin Mary from the Crusades and deposited it in our local village church of Le Puy Notre Dame. His granddaughter Eleanor of Aquitaine founded a collegial church to honour the relic which, according to legend, helped various queens of France become pregnant, often with male offspring. This church became a site of pilgrimage, being on the route to Santiago del Compostelo and the remnants of the relic can still be seen here today.
Musée des 24 Heures (Musée Automobile de la Sarthe) in Le Mans is at the main entrance to the Le Mans motor racing circuit home of the famous 24-Hour race. It has a fine collection of exceptional and beautifully preserved classic cars including many legends from the most famous races as well as lots of films and archive photographs. It houses over 5000m² of exhibition space, with 120 vehicles including 30 historic racing cars and 10 motorcycles. The earliest exhibit is an 1885 De Dion Bouton et Trepardoux prototype steam driven dog cart .
The Cadre Noir equestrian display team puts on two types of amazing shows: one is the public performance which allow you to watch how the horses are trained which is an hour-long demonstration with a commentary, and the other is the ballet-like Gala which links the skills of the graceful horses and riders to the live music.