Well renovated holiday Gite in rural Normandy - NO006827

9.9/10
3km from Domfront, Orne, Normandy Reference: NO006827 Advertiser since: 22 January 2019
Property Board Arrival Bedrooms Sleeps Bathrooms Additional info
Etoile du Nord Self Catering Flexible 3 6 2 Single sofabed - suitable for 1 child or adult

About this property

A Luxurious, Peaceful Gite in Beautiful Countryside. This cottage/gite is in a rural setting.

The gite is a lovingly-converted late 19th century Colombage barn, retaining all its original character whilst offering every modern convenience. This 3-bedroomed luxury gite enjoys its own secluded garden, including above ground pool, covered outdoor kitchen/barbecue area, and enclosed parking spaces. Breakfast on the terrace overlooking open fields is the perfect way to start your day. With its open-plan ground floor, dramatic ceilings and electrical central heating the gite is perfect for summer or winter use. Perfect for large families or groups of friends, this property is the ideal setting for unwinding, exploring or simply getting away from it all.

Great proximity to the ferry terminal at Ouistreham (Caen) - where clients can claim a discount for the Brittany Ferries cross-channel service - and just over an hour from Mont St Michel. The local town of Domfront sits less than 3 kilometres, with all facilities and supermarkets available, and the city of Caen over an hour away. The small market town of Flers is less than 30 minutes' distance, with the mainline rail link to Paris and Brittany. The historic D-Day landing beaches are within easy reach, and there are many military memorials, museums and cemeteries as well as memorials from the First World War.

The property enjoys fabulous views over the beautiful Normandy countryside, with all-year round access to viewing wildlife. In the evenings you can sit outside with a chilled drink to enjoy the wonderful dark skies where you will regularly see countless constellations and the Milky Way - see our photos. We are dog-friendly and we have multi-lingual facilities: English, French, German and Russian are spoken here!

Type

Cottage/Gite

Kitchen and dining

The roomy kitchen area has an oven, 4-ring hob, microwave, fridge-freezer, sink and drainer, as well as a washing machine for any laundry requirements. Ironing facilities and clothes airers are available. There is storage for lots of food and condiments, and a rack for storing the obligatory wine and local ciders!

The spacious dining area enjoys views into the private garden and consists of a long table and chairs that will comfortably seat 8 people. There are 2 highchairs for babies and toddlers, and all cutlery, crockery and linen are provided.

Living rooms

The open plan design of the ground floor ensures that the living room enjoys lovely open space adjoining the kitchen and dining areas, so no-one feels detached from the group at any time. A television and dvd player, with a fine selection of dvds to suit all tastes, are available for those who would enjoy some light entertainment after all that relaxing in the Normandy air. There is comfortable seating for everyone, on soft plush sofas and armchairs, and there are boardgames for plenty of interactive entertainment. Tasteful main and complementary lighting ensure an ambience in the evenings.

Views over the rear enclosed garden and the front courtyard not only give beautiful aspects of the property but ensure that the large south-facing glass areas supply a wonderful quality of light into the ground floor areas during the day.

Bedrooms

There are 3 upstairs bedrooms, all tastefully furnished with double beds, hanging rails, heating and complementary decorative items. The main bedroom, which is the largest of the 3, has an en suite bathroom and toilet, a double bed and a single convertible sofa-seat into a single bed. The other 2 bedrooms are similarly tastefully decorated, all with windows and associated safety features. Views are either over the courtyard or the rear private garden.

For larger groups and families, there is a double convertible sofa in the living room for 2 people, and there are baby travelcot facilities for up to 2 infants.

The bedrooms enjoy original beamwork in the ceilings, with lighting to complement the atmospheric setting of the rooms. A beautiful mezzanine gallery linking the bedrooms overlooks the fabulous glass front of the gite.

Bathrooms

The gite enjoys 2 upstairs bathrooms - 1 en suite with the main bedroom, and a shared bathroom on the landing/mezzanine gallery area.

The en suite bathroom boasts a shower and small basin, with toilet facilities.

The shared bathroom enjoys a full length bath with incorporated shower, and washbasin and toilet.

All bathrooms have heaters and air extraction, as well as lockable doors and windows.

Heating

The property is fully equipped in all areas with electrical storage heating, and hot water is permanently on demand. For winter use, we can supply supplementary portable gas or fuel heaters. In the invariably warm summers, the airy atmosphere of the gite layout ensures good airflow, with the wattle and daub (torchis) construction ensuring breathability throughout.

Entertainment

In this beautiful part of the Normandy countryside, you can either make your own entertainment, or enjoy the serenity and solitude of the property. We have outdoor facilities (see below) but also tv, dvds, boardgames, boules, books, magazines, tourist information, and paths for walking your dogs. The ambience dictates whether you want to be active or relaxing; there are forest walks, cycling trails, historical attractions (including the medieval town with its biannual festival, and the D-Day landing beaches). Local towns offer everything for shopping, while the beautiful Mont St Michel lies under an hour away. You decide how much entertainment you need!

For those who feel adventurous, take a train from Flers (30 mins away) to either Paris or other destinations including Brittany.

In the evenings, you have to be here to appreciate a drink outdoors watching the sun go down - the dark skies are something else to see. Wildlife and birds are plentiful through the day for nature lovers

Garden and outside

The rear garden is fully enclosed, and there is an above-ground swimming pool for those balmy days and hot summer relaxation. We have an outdoor kitchen and bbq area attached to the gite, where you can enjoy cooking al fresco. It is fully illuminated so can be enjoyed to any late hour. There is a fully laid patio and seating area in the garden to enjoy afternoon relaxation or evening dining by the pool.

The surrounding views are just beautiful to see, and as already described, you can enjoy a sundowner at sunset, waiting to take in the breathtaking dark skies we enjoy at Etoile du Nord.

Parking and garages

The gite is fortunate to be off the beaten track with regards to the nearest road, and therefore enjoys secluded, enclosed parking for several vehicles; up to 6 vehicles can be comfortably parked.

Visitor suitability

Our gite has been tastefully equipped and decorated to appeal to all discerning tastes, and offers a level of comfort and luxury that is unique to our property. The ambience speaks for itself in this traditional Colombage barn conversion, as well as the outdoor facilities and surroundings which all make up the experience for you, your family and friends at Etoile du Nord. We have used our experiences from travelling and holidaying, and want to offer you the best relaxing accommodation that you can find. Families with children of all ages, and adult groups are all equally welcome. Don't forget your 4-legged family, we're dog-friendly too!

We request that smoking is confined to outdoors, where trays are provided. The property also has fire extinguishers and blankets in the downstairs area, and full evacuation details.

Although the gite may be unsuitable for disabled clients, we do have a downstairs bedroom with en suite facilities and own external door in the adjoining property.

Facilities

  • No smoking

  • Pets welcomed *

  • Linen

  • Child facilities

  • Private pool

* Vet details: Cabinet Vétérinaire du Mont Margantin 2 Rue du Mont Margantin 61700 Domfront +33 233300740 English spoken

Activities

About the Owner/Advertiser, Mr John Walker

John and Ali are the hosts at Étoile du Nord, formerly Le Petit Lac. Both natives of North East England, they have much knowledge in living abroad, and enjoy offering the facilities and comforts that combine for the best holiday experience you can find. As a professional linguist, John can converse in many European languages, while Ali is the consummate host who will ensure that your stay is perfect and all needs catered for.

Year property purchased 2018
Why this location? Beautiful, idyllic, quiet, relaxing, comfortable, spacious, private, back to nature, dark skies, local facilities within easy reach, as active or as passive as you want your holiday to be. A home from home in the most relaxing of locations.
Unique benefits of property Remote without being too far from civilisation. Quiet, peaceful, relaxing but plenty to see and do without too far to travel.

Spacious, fully furnished and equipped - including a swimming pool. Outdoor catering facilities, large parking facility in enclosed courtyard.

Dark skies at night - exceptional opportunity to stargaze with little to no light pollution. Wildlife on your doorstep, family pets welcome - great walking facilities close by.

Easy to get to/from Domfront and public transport hubs at Flers and Caen. Mont St Michel less than an hour away.

The Owner Recommends

Domfront

Less than 10 mins drive into the heart of the medieval town where you can visit the castle ruins where Eleanor of Aquitaine ruled and gave birth to her first daughter - she was the wife of Henry II and mother of King Richard Coeur de Lion and King John, among others.

Recommended restaurants - Bistro St Julien, L'Echauguette, Auberge du Grand Gousier.

Shopping - Intermarché and Carrefour supermarkets open 7 days.

Bakeries - ALL of our bakeries are amazing - especially in St Front.

Markets

Local markets - every Friday in Domfront, every Saturday in Flers.

Bagnoles de l'Orne

Very lovely, picturesque town about 20 mins from here - good local shops and restaurants. Le Lido handy for a quick lunch stop and apéritifs. The Casino hosts shows through the summer.

La Ferté Macé

Delightful market town with shopping, restaurants and a fabulous lake area for open swimming, canoeing, cycling and walking. On-site cafe and parking. 25 mins drive.

D-Day Beaches

About 2 hours' drive away - memorials and museums to the landing beaches with dedications to the British, Canadian, US and other Allied nations who participated in the D-Day landings in 1944

Mont St Michel

The second most popular and visited attraction in France - about 1hr 20 min drive away. Excellent parking facilities with free transport included to the island itself, or a good 25 min walk for those feeling energetic. Worth the climb to the top for the views, it is recommended to check the tide tables to time your visit. Dogs are welcome.

Bayeux

Museums and attractions including The Tapestry of 1066 and new museum dedicated to the 1944 Normandy Offensive. Numerous lovely cafes and restaurants in a delightful old town

Paris

2 hr 25 mins on the train from Flers (30 min drive from here) and you can be dining in the City of Light - the train arrives in Montparnasse Vaugirard. Check out the world-famous La Coupole brasserie in Montparnasse with its renowned seafood platters and other culinary delights.

4 Reviews
9.9/10
  • Cleanliness: 10
  • Comfort: 10
  • Condition: 10
  • Facilities: 9.5
  • Local Amenities: 9.5
  • Setting: 10
  • Value for Money: 9.8
10 / 10 Walters 5 September, 2019

We had a super week’s holiday in this lovely, spacious gite. The pool is a superb facility - including the inflatable unicorn which was a huge hit with our teenagers. The new decking area is a great place to relax. John and Ali were lovely, friendly hosts and they ensured we were happy and settled. The welcome hamper and first day croissants were most welcome. We had several trips out including - Bayeux, Caen, Omaha Beach, Overlord Museum, the American WW2 cemetery, Pierre Huet cider and calvados distillery. The local town, Domfront is interesting - the ruined medieval castle is worth a visit. Local supermarkets are good.
We enjoyed the amazing starry skies at night and relaxed utterly every evening. This was our best holiday in a long time and I do not hesitate to recommend Étoile du Nord as a great place to stay.

Owner response

Thank you so very much for your kind words, Annette, it is very much appreciated and welcomed. We are extremely happy that you and your family had a lovely time with us, and that you really took full advantage of so many things that we and the region have to offer. We are constantly striving to keep up our standards and to ensure that the gite is as comfortable, clean and well laid out as possible for your use. We will be making upgrades to some features and installations in the close season, so that if you do decide (we hope!) to stay with us again, it will be even better than you have experienced this year. Many sincere thanks again for your review and the time taken to send it, and take good care of yourselves. Kind regards, John & Ali

9.8 / 10 Rick L 26 August, 2019

This was a great find. The owners were wonderful and couldn’t have been any more helpful. The property is spacious and comfortable, the outside seating area was beautifully decked with sun loungers and corner seating furniture. We used the BBQ and ate outside pretty much every day and there was plenty of room. The property is secluded with plenty of parking space. The area itself is fairly quiet but with a forest nearby it is perfect for walking and cycling, a visit to Bagnoles-de-l’Orne is well worth doing. Two major supermarkets are nearby (5-10mins) and the local town has bars and restaurants although not within easy walking distance (again 5-10mins drive). I have no hesitation in recommending this villa and would happily visit again.

Owner response

Thank you very much for your kind review and comments, Rick - it really was a pleasure hosting you, Karen, Jane and Colin over the week, and we would love to see you all again in the near future. We are very happy that you enjoyed our lovely gite, and that you were comfortable and relaxed in here. It is important to us that our guests are made to feel welcome and relaxed, and that our facilities are at a high standard. We will be upgrading some of our amenities for next summer, so please keep us in mind for your booking plans! Many thanks once more, John & Ali

10 / 10 Vpetrie 19 August, 2019

Where to start.... best place we've stayed in 5 years travelling to this part of France. Place had a boutique hotel feel and was much bigger than pictures portrayed. The gite was really clean - again visiting other houses and encountering lower levels of cleanliness made us notice how much effort John and Ali had put into place. Lovely welcome pack and coffee machine fully stocked with capsules. John and Ali were on hand to help with any queries but were not in any way intrusive. Pool was bigger than we'd expected and for a Normany Gite in this price bracket, it made it exceptional value. Domfront itself seems to have lost a lot of shops with many empty but this is not uncommon to other places too. The history of the area made up for this in terms of going into town and pottering about. Places to visit which kids loved included: cornfield maze, lake for boating, zoo and fougieres is worth a visit. All info on these places are in info provided in the gite.

Owner response

Thank you very much, Vicky, for all your lovely comments and positive remarks about our gite. We do make a huge effort to ensure that all of our guests are made to feel welcome, special and comfortable on their holiday, and so it is nice that this is appreciated. It is of paramount importance that the gite is not just comfortable and enjoyable to stay in, but that it is clean and well-equipped for everyone's needs. We are always striving to improve on everything to make your holidays the best we can, and we are always looking ahead to maintain the standards that you so obviously enjoyed. Thank you also for highlighting the local facilities, it's good to know what families enjoy. We would be very happy to see you and your delightful family back with us at any time throughout the year! Thank you once more! John & Ali

9.7 / 10 BobnWendynBruce 23 July, 2019

Etoile du Nord is a really wonderful gîte: light, spacious, comfortable and well maintained. There are plenty of nice places to sit, both inside and outside. The pool is a great place to splash around and cool off, even if it is not suitable for lap swimming. The kitchen was well equipped and the 'outdoor kitchen' is a good place for a bbq. Owners John and Ali welcomed us with a basket of food and drink (very welcome, so that we didn't need to go out to shop immediately after our arrival) and were super friendly and helpful throughout our stay. Our dog loved the comfortable cushions and the lovely country lane for walks straight from the gîte. Nearby Domfront (5-10 mins by car) has good facilities, including superb croissants in the (cyclable) suburb of St Front, and an attractive medieval centre. There is a great market in Flers (30 mins by car), and other attractive places to visit within an hour's drive. We plan to return next year!

Owner response

Thank you, Bob and Wendy - it was a real pleasure to have hosted you, your family and Bruce, and that you enjoyed your stay with us. We have taken all your comments on board and hope that we will see you again next year. Thank you for being excellent visitors and appreciating our lovely gîte, and for your kind words in the review; you are always welcome here.