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“Could be made even better with a few small changes...” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Domaine les Moulins

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Domaine les Moulins
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5.0 of 5 Cabin/Campground   |   Rue des Moulins, 85680 La Gueriniere, Ile de Noirmoutier, France   |  
Hotel amenities
London / Kent
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Could be made even better with a few small changes...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2012

We (my partner and two teenage children) have just returned from a generally lovely stay on Noirmoutier.

On the whole, we thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Domaine les Moulins.

We had booked a four person 'Fleur de Sel' lodge/tent from the Classique range and found it to be plenty spacious, with a decently sized wardrobe for our clothing for a week and nice large sink area. The wooden chairs and tables were used inside with no sacrifice of space. When the weather allowed we also took them out on to the decking area for a nice al fresco dinner or lunch.

As someone who is notoriously fussy about bed comfort, I had no complaints about the bedding provided and enjoyed a rare good weeks' sleep. The proximity to the beach didn't disturb us except for our penultimate night when the wind and weather really turned. That's to be expected in such a location though, and can't be complained about!

The two-ring stove was fine for our needs, although the addition of a grill would have been welcome and increased the range of what we were able to cook 'at base'. The local 'Casino' mini market, right by the entrance to the site, was great if we were suddenly short of essentials. It is quite a bit more expensive in there than the local branches of Intermarche and Super U, the former of which we used more frequently. The evening pizza truck that parks by the shop opposite the entrance is also great value and the pizzas are very tasty – and cooked in a wood-fired oven in about five minutes.

Our criticisms are perhaps quite trivial, but are worth noting…

The bar and restaurant on site were, in our opinion, a complete wash out. We found the kind of food on offer to be totally at odds with the camping-style experience and the staff (note: only in the bar/restaurant) were rude, abrupt and unwelcoming. One our first trip to the bar we sat at a table while all those around us were served. In the end we went and ordered at the bar and were ignored for some time. Eventually a bald chap acknowledged us, but then passed us to someone else and walked off. The second time we tried the bar we ordered straight at the bar, having learned from the previous visit, and again it took an age for us to be acknowledged. On both occasions the bar and restaurant were relatively empty and the staff certainly can't have been overburdened. The manager of both – a tall man, usually in a shirt and sometimes tie – paced around the place, looking grim and unfriendly and this lead to us feeling most unwelcome. A shame, as there is potential for both bar and restaurant to be fantastic.

The other annoyance were the entertainment evenings (on the Sunday and Tuesday, if I recall – although don't quote me on that). The Sunday featured what sounded like a karaoke evening and went on until gone one in the morning. We were in probably the furthest corner of the site from the entertainment area and yet the noise kept us awake. Similarly on the night of the country music entertainment – this went on until half past one in the morning, again, stopping us sleeping. Had we had very young children, this would have been a much more problematic issue and something we would likely have raised with staff. As it was, it was annoying and something I'd have liked to have known about in advance. Maybe the music was carried on the wind? I don't know, but to not sleep is frustrating.

Other than that, we were very happy; staff at the on-site cycle hire were friendly (note: they don't accept card payments there, but there is an ATM over the road, next to the Tabac), Team staff were very nice and helpful and the location itself was welcome for the kind of break we were after. When we had problems with a bedroom light, it was fixed swiftly. Likewise when our gas bottle ran out.

Room Tip: In light of noise disturbance from evening entertainment, try and get a lodge as far from it as poss...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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72 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2012

A nice holiday experience but our personal experience was let down in some areas. After reading a review in quality UK Newspaper the Guardian, we booked a week in a Fleur De Sel for approx Euro 900. The staff were friendly and helpful on arrival and during the stay, the site was pleasant and our children had a lovely time playing with the other children in the evenings. Overall I would recommend this place if you can book a high end rental for a reasonable price. These were the plus points we enjoyed:
Good natural feel to the site with cars kept away from rentals
Clean, attractive common buildings, good restaurant, pool and bike hire
Friendly helpful staff
Comfortable camp beds with quality white cotton bedding/towels
Great shower, cooking and fridge facilities in the Fleur De Sel
Great sunsets!

I feel our own experience could have been better in some areas, although these may be specific to our stay which was a late booking:
More shade & cool areas to relax - our Fleur de Sel had no shade except for a parosol. As we were blessed with great hot weather it became too hot to sit inside or outside the rental from 11am - 5pm (over 35c inside the rental). The website talks of 5 Hectares of woods but we could not find any shaded areas to sit that would not have impacted the privacy of other rentals.
Night time noise from adjoining campers walking down the gravel pathways to the toilet block in the night. I feel that the rentals without toilets and the campers should be sited in a different area.
Beach was not suitable for swimming during our stay due to huge amounts of sea weed. No problem if swimming in the sea onsite is not your top priority. We found lovely sea weed free beaches on the eastern side of the island.

In summary if you check the location of your rental and maybe go for a higher grade you can have a wonderful relaxing holiday here.

Room Tip: If booking a rental try to get one that does not back onto tent pitches. Especially if you are pay...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Domaine les Moulins

Address: Rue des Moulins, 85680 La Gueriniere, Ile de Noirmoutier, France
Location: France > Pays de la Loire > Vendee > Ile de Noirmoutier > La Gueriniere
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 Specialty Lodging in La Gueriniere
Hotel Class:5 star — Domaine les Moulins 5*
Number of rooms: 230
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Devoted to authenticity and embracing a back-to-nature philosophy, the Domaine Les Moulins provides top-quality service and is nestled in an exceptional setting, right on the water’s edge. ... more   less 

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