This location has multiple holiday properties
|Le Vieux Fournil||Self Catering||Flexible||1||2||1|
Le Vieux Fournil is a converted traditional breadoven, still with the original oven opening into the living space area. The kitchen and bathroom are housed in the original wood store and pig sty. The bedroom is converted from the hayloft although now the high ceiling is grandly adorned with its own chandelier! The cottage has a secluded, private fenced garden overlooking surrounding fields and countryside.
The cottage is located in the North Western region of the Pays de la Loire making easy day tripping to the northern French coastal sites of Mont Saint Michel and Normandy beaches or south to the vineyards of Vouvray and the stunning Chateau and gardens of Villandry. However if you just want short day trips this area is packed with history from the medieval town of Lassay-les-Châteaux just 2 kms away to the pretty hilltop town of Sainte Suzanne or take a drive through stunning countryside to the home of William the Conquerer and much, much more. You can also walk or cycle along 85 kms of river towpath, enjoy boat trips, kayaking, sailing or just enjoy the local food and wine whilst appreciating the view!
This is an ideal base for those seeking rest and relaxation in wonderful countryside, a break away from hectic modern life!
The kitchen is well equipped with electric oven/grill, toaster, cafetière, tea pot, gas hob, fridge with ice box, ironing board/iron. Additional freezer space is located with the washing machine in the exterior shed. There is a butler stone sink under the kitchen window which has spectacular views into the valley below and the evening sunset even makes washing up a pleasure! All guests are provided with the essentials - salt and pepper, olive oil, mixed herbs, sugar, flour, aluminium foil and cling film.
We also provide washing up liquid, hand soap, dishcloth and sponge, T-towels, bin bags and cleaning materials so there is no need to bring everything with you.
Guests also receive a complimentary welcome pack which includes a litre of milk, a ready to bake baguette, a bottle of red wine, butter and homemade jam.
We also provide a basket of red, white and rosé wine plus cider in the cottage in case you run out, the cost of which can be settled up at the end of your holiday!
The stable door opens into the living and dining area. The original oven entrance opens up into the living space and the inside of the oven can be viewed by the candles placed inside which creates a lovely atmosphere in the evening.
There is a two seater sofa, coffee table, side tables and lamps. The cottage is wi-fi connected, has a sound system for music and flat screen TV. There is also a dvd player and we provide a library of over 500 dvds from which guests may borrow as many dvds as they wish. The dining table seats two with café style chairs.
For the time of year when it is slightly chilly in the mornings and evenings there is a cast iron gas heater in the style of a woodburner which provides instant warmth without the mess!
Upstairs the bedroom has stone walls, exposed oak beams, chandelier and wood floor. Double bed with high quality 200TCC white cotton linen. All towels are provided and clean linen and towels are provided every 7 days if the booking is longer than one week. Dressing table with hairdryer and mirror, bedside table and lamps, chest of drawers, clothes hanging facility from beams, suitcase rack, traditional metal towel rail and oil filled radiator.
Large modern shower with part exposed stone walls. Fixed 'rain' shower with alternative detachable shower fitting in tiled walk-in shower space. Electric heated towel rail, basin, shaving mirror and wc. Bath mat, hand towel and hand soap for and bathroom are provided.
Cast iron gas heater in the style of a woodburner which provides instant warmth without the mess, oil filled radiator in the bedroom and electric heater in the bathroom.
The cottage is wi-fi connected, has a sound system for music and flat screen TV. There is also a DVD player and we provide a library of over 500 films and box series from which guests may borrow as many as they wish.
There is also a selection of literature, fiction and books about the area plus games such as scrabble/chess/backgammon.
We also provide a comprehensive guidebook to the local area including restaurants, places to visit, supermarkets etc or visit our web site which provides all links to local facilities.
One mens and one ladies bicycle are available at the riders own risk. Helmets and safety equipment are not provided.
The cottage has a large private fenced garden to the rear with dining terrace, table, chairs, cushions and parasol, bbq and sun loungers.
The garden has landscaped beds and lawns overlooking fields and surrounding countryside.
There is a covered parking barn to the rear of the property.
Suitable for couples, not suitable for those with disabilities due to the steep staircase.
All guests receive a complimentary 'starter pack' which includes 1 litre of semi-skimmed milk, T bags, ground coffee, part baked baguette, butter, jam, a bottle of red wine, toilet roll, cleaning materials, washing up liquid, bin bags, foil, olive oil, mixed herbs and s&p. Guests may also buy our free range organic eggs from the lovely "chickie girls' or organic honey produced from the bee hives in the garden.
The cottage is non-smoking but guests can smoke in the garden and grounds. One small to medium sized dog will be considered on request - please see Dog Guidance Notes found in the Terms and Conditions link. The owners Sandra and Paul are happy to assist with any requests for information, advice or making arrangements for trips or bookings.
My husband Paul and I both had busy stressful lives, unhealthy lifestyles and not enough 'together' time. We would longingly watch all those tv programs about changing your life, renovating a wreck into a designers dream, all whilst Kevin McCloud peered into the camera wringing his hands in despair - if only that could be us! So we took a leap of faith, left our jobs, packed our small car, drove to France and haven't regretted a moment since!
|Year property purchased||2008|
|Why this location?||We absolutely fell in love with the area - like a huge Devon but without the people!! Family, friends, eating and socialising are the main focus for everyone here so there's never any hurry and nothing is ever too busy. It's great to just relax, unwind and enjoy the everyday beauty of the surrounding landscape and the abundance of fantastic wildlife. Although we live on a hilltop with great views and are surrounded by fields all our local amenities are just down the road including our favourite lunchtime restaurant where a five course meal with wine costs just €12! In addition the coast is only an hour and a half away for those days when we want some sea air, a run on the beach with our dog Barnabé and enjoy a plate of really fresh shellfish. For more excitement we can also take day trips to the South to enjoy wine tasting and chateau visiting, east to Rennes the capital of Brittany or 1hr 10 mins to Paris from Laval on the train.|
|Unique benefits of property||We wanted to create a holiday cottage that we would have wanted to stay in when we were on holiday ourselves - big soft pillows, white linen on the bed and a great big shower with lots of hot water, (not just a luke warm trickle whilst crouching in a small smelly cubicle). Most of all a place that could feel like a home not just a holiday let. We also wanted to take the hassle out of trying to find out about local places to visit or restaurants that are good value and great food rather than discovering it all on the last day when your holiday is almost over. We have put together a comprehensive book with all the local historical attractions, restaurant recommendations (we have everything from Michelin star restaurants to the workers cafés), information leaflets about outdoor activities such as horse riding, sailing, kayaking etc, along with books on the local area, cycling and walking routes plus trips further afield such as the Normandy beaches or the Chateaux of the Loire.|
From neolithic monuments in our local village to the Roman encampment at Jublains and the beautiful medieval hilltop village of Sainte Suzanne you can take a step back in time to see how this land developed down the centuries. With the 14th century chateau of Lassay les Chateaux just 2 kms away and the Chateau Museum in Mayenne (20kms) you can really get a feel for the history of this area. La Gautrie is a fantastic location for day trips to world renowned destinations such as Mont Saint Michel, Bayeux and the Normandy beaches or a visit to the châteaux and vineyards of la Loire .
We have a wide variety of restaurants to choose from including two 1 star Michelin restaurants both within 20 minutes of the cottage for those special occasions or at the other end of the scale our village restaurant which serves 5 courses (including wine and coffee) for just €12! There is of course everything in between (we have tried most of them at least once) and we are always on hand to help with reservations and advice.
The Mayenne River has 85 kms of river towpath from the town of Mayenne southwards to Laval for you to explore. In 2016 the towpath was used to host the largest picnic in the world and is now entered in the Guinness Book of Records! This path also forms part of La Vélo Francette, a cycle way that travels from La Rochelle to Ouistreham covering 600kms. You can join it going north at Ambrieres les vallees (6kms from the cottage) to Domfront (a stage of 49kms) or further if you wish! We have bicycles at La Gautrie for guests to use to take a leisurely ride in the surrounding countryside - you won’t have far to go to have an unforgettable experience! The Mayenne river also provides facilities for fishing, kayaking, sailing and canoeing with the nearest activity centre being just 7 kms away. However if you want to take a more leisurely pace you could enjoy a boat trip or alternatively you can just sit in one of the local restaurants and enjoy the view!
Whether its large formal gardens, themed gardens or small private gardens open to the public they can be found within the region and are great destinations whilst making the most of driving or cycling through the pretty countryside. Details of parks and gardens can be found on the link to our La Gautrie web page.
If you just want to relax why not take advantage of the Spa town of Bagnoles de L'Orne for a beauty treatment or massage followed by a relaxing lunch in one of the many restaurants and bars. Closer to the cottage take a wander around the town of Lassay les Chateaux, discover the medieval rose and kitchen gardens, explore the cobbled back streets or take a tour around the 14th century Chateau. However if you just want to rest and take a breather, lie back on the sun loungers, enjoy the garden, listen to the birds, watch the butterflies and raise a glass to the sunset!
We had a fantastic stay with Sandra & Paul after our weekend at the Le Mans 24hr race. It is the perfect place to relax after a busy weekend.
I cannot fault a stay at Le Vieux Fournil or for that matter the sister property La Petite Maison but I am left with a dilemma - do I show my real score ... or try and dissuade, by erroneously low scores, others from staying that might book the very time we want to stay next time ? However I cannot tell a lie.
The Vieux Fournil is a delight and the stay fantastic. The only thing I would advise people of (and it is in the information) is that controlled by the building itself, the bathroom has to be on the ground floor and the stairs to the bedroom have to be steep - if that is an issue, then simply look to book the other gite La Petite Maison. Sandra and Paul set a standard as hosts that I have yet to see bettered - help if you need it, invisible when you want to pretend for 5 minutes that La Gauterie is actually your home.
The attention to detail is what marks out a great holiday from a good holiday and as they say 'they have nailed it'.
The area is easily accessible by car but you don't need to travel far to enjoy good food and the local town of Lassay Les Chateaux has all the facilities that you require just a short drive away. We would highly recommend that you visit the local restaurant in Chantrigne for lunch (be there at noon they fill fast). There is no menu - it's truly pot luck but 6 courses for around 12 Euros cannot be beaten and its a wonderful experience too and if your French is a touch rusty, there is a charming waitress from the UK working there.
Absolute gem of a cottage in grounds of a most beautifully maintained property comprising main house with a further 2 bedroomed gite, covered parking in restored open fronted traditional barn plus other extensive stone outbuildings. Each property has its own quite separate and relatively private garden with table and chairs and loungers and a BBQ, shared laundry room and freezer. Le Vieux Fournil has been lovingly restored and is furnished to a high standard. Comfortable bed and good linen, plenty of drawer space in the bedroom, limited clothes hanging, but hold on, it's a fairly small cottage and every inch of space has been utilised to full potential and is more than adequate for two people! Very comfortable sitting/dining room with everything you need, plus the actual Bread Oven which is awesome! The kitchen is very well equipped for a fairly small space and I have cooked some lovely meals for the two of us on both our visits. Plenty of kitchen linens provided. Small bathroom but benefits from a large shower tray with super rainforest shower. Lovely big bath towels! The friendly owners live onsite and are there if needed but not intrusive at all. A most beautiful part of France with great restaurants and lovely places to visit within easy striking distance, the cottage has an extremely well presented guide to the area with a wealth of information. Lassay itself is glorious! No hesitation in recommending this property to fellow travellers.
Thank you so much for your lovely comments - it is really important to us that our guests have had a relaxing and enjoyable experience at La Gautrie. We hope to see you again next year! Kind regards Sandra et Paul
Really excellent gite in a wonderful location. Well maintained with all the facilities for our stay. Very well furnished and made to feel like a home. Loved the extensive DVD collection for nighttime or the odd rainy moment. The owners live on site and are really helpful. Excellent private gardens which were lovely to sit out in. We took our dog who had the time of her life. Close to small town for supplies yet firmly in the countryside. Plenty of places to visit and great for walks. We would definitely recommend to friends. We've stayed in a few gites/cottages over the years and this is up there with the best if you're looking for a gite for a couple in this region.
Thank you David and Jill - thank you for your kind words, our extensive DVD collection has now grown thanks to a few suggestions made by yourself! We loved meeting both of you and your wonderful dog Elsie so please don't hesitate to come back and see us anytime! Kind regards Sandra et Paul (plus Barnabé of course)