We have just returned from our 2 week stay in the Duc du Mirepoix room with our 2 young children (6 and 4) and a 1 year old baby and can honestly say that we have had the best holiday as a family that we've ever had.
If you are looking for somewhere that is utterly relaxing than this is it.
We knew we were in for a special time, when we were running very late due to traffic and extensive stops along the way (we forgot to factor in the kids) and Alexandre the owner told us not to worry about being late and to give him a ring just before we got there, it was gone midnight by the time we arrived and Alexandre was there to help us with our bags up to our room and got us settled in. The kids went to bed and we took advantage of one of the bottles of wine that was left in our room (you do have to pay for these but they started from a very reasonable price of 5.45 Euros - exactly the same price as the same bottle in the supermarket). We sat outside on the terrace and could hear nothing but the sound of crickets, and watched a couple of shooting stars fly past as well as the aerobatics of the local bats.
In the morning we had breakfast by the pool but for the rest of the stay opted for a daily delivery of the best croissants and french bread I've ever tasted.
Within a couple of days we really felt at home, so much so that we felt more like we'd been invited to stay with friends rather than being hotel customers.
it is possible to have meals by the poolside as long as you tell them in avance that you wish to do so, we decided to go to the barbeque night - believe me, you've not tasted barbeque food until you have tried the chicken cooked over old vines rather than charcoal - it was absolutely superb and was made even better by 2 members of Alexandres team playing the accordion and the flute, it was a lovely evening and over too soon.
The town of Servian is small but has a very nice restaurant called vesuvios, the quality of the food I had was excellent, and was a lot more fancy than the restaurant looked. There is another restaurant in the town which we didn't get to, but other guests said was very good also. There is also a brand new "SuperU" supemarket which will supply you with pretty everything you need, including fuel for the car.
The nearby town of Pezenas is well worth a visit, on friday nights and wednesday nights, the place is buzzing with all the shops staying open until late, the industrial outskirts of the town belie the beaty of the town centre which is made up of old houses and cobbled streets. One word of advice would be to book a table in a restaurant well in advance or turn up to eat early as there are so many people wanting to eat that the restaurants seem to have trouble coping.
When coming back from Pezenas, try taking the D39 via Tourbes to take you back to the chateau - the scenery is breathtaking.
The chateau is also an excellent base from which to explore the local area, the beaches of Cap D'Agde are about 40 minutes away, and Carcassone about an hour and a quarter.
Although we packed a lot of sightessing into our holiday, we always made time to escape the hustle and bustle and just coming back and soaking up the atmosphere and peace of the chateau was like sinking into a warm bath after a tiring day.
Having done the "all inclusive" hotels with the kids, where you have to rush to get to breakfast, find a space in a noisy canteen (you can't really call them restaurants) along with hundreds of other guests, is in it's own way kind of stressful, doing what you want, when you want and at your own pace is truly relaxing.
One tip: The only english speaking channel available on the TV is CNN, so if you want to entertain the kids for a few minues, or watch a movie in the evening you'll have to rely on a DVD. At the time of writing, there wasn't a DVD player in the room so I brought my own. The TV is a brand new flatscreen so has all the inputs you'll need to connect up a laptop or DVD player so it wasn't a big deal.
In short, the chateau is very rustic in look and feel, the people who own and run it are great and couldn't do more to make sure you have a fabulous stay, and for the first time ever (I generally think life's too short to go to the same place twice) I am going to book to go back again - it just ticks all of the boxes.
I was charmed by this charming chateau.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The estate offers 22 apartments accommodating from two to six persons and also an independent house with private pool sleeping eight in four bedrooms.Each property has it's own terrace or patio for dining. Guests have free use of extensive grounds, gym room, outside heated pool, tennis court, billiard, mountain Bikes, table tennis, table football; In the garden you will find open terrace with sun bath chairs; The chateau is surrounded by its vineyard and each apartment has a wine store with a selection of local wines.There are daily deliveries of bakery goods at your door in time for breakfast, maid service and meal trays provided for an extra charge. A massage parlour is available on site with relaxing massage service. A laundry service is also available on-site. From mid may 2015 a professional a restaurant runs on site. ... more less