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Chateau de Tennessus
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Reviewed August 12, 2011

We stayed as two couples. My husband and I were travelling in France with our Australian cousins and spending one night at Chateau de Tennessus. This visit was to be one of the highlights and it certainly lived up to our expectations. We were warmly welcomed on our arrival and nothing was too much trouble. Philippa is a kind caring host who is absolutely devoted to her home. She shared her passion for the Chateau with us. The rooms were magnificent and the atmosphere echoed the medieval era. Breakfast was excellent with home made preserves, excellent yoghurt and of course fresh croissants, bread and good coffee. We will return with other visitors from abroad first chance we get!

  • Stayed: August 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank ChristineZUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
tennessus, Owner at Chateau de Tennessus, responded to this reviewResponded February 6, 2013

I am so glad you enjoyed your stay here. Many thanks for this positive review.
Philippa

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 7, 2010

Stayed here for only one night in September.....a really incredible place. Beautifully restored by an English couple, who unfortunately were travelling when we were there. However we were greeted by their charming daughter who made us feel totally at home. I had promised my 10 year old son a night in a 'real' castle and this was exactly what he wanted. The highlight of the visit was their very friendly golden retriever 'Cappa" who made instant friends with my son and the fact that there was a bat in a glassed in window slot in our room........don't worry ,it can't get into the room.....only out to the outside. He was able to raise and lower the drawbrige and we took a rowboat around the moat!! By the way the sewage does NOT NOT go into the moat as someone said.....only the 'grey' water...washing up and bath water. A really memorable stay and I'd love to go back for longer. Also if you have time,visit Europes best theme park, Puy du Fou about an hours drive away. This is NOT a park with rides (a la Disney) but rather a park with very elaborate and spectacular theatrical scenarios.....Viking battles, a Roman arena, siege of a castle, 3 Musketeers and a hugely spectacular finale with incredible fireworks. Also lots of smaller shows all around. My 10 year old loved it!!! For more info check out their website Puy du Fou. But the best of everything was Tennessus Castle..really fabulous!! If you want any info. please don't hesitate to message me.......I lived and worked in France for 15 years and have travelled all over the country. Enjoy your trip!!

  • Stayed: September 2009, traveled with family
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Thank paddyfrance
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
tennessus, Owner at Chateau de Tennessus, responded to this reviewResponded February 6, 2013

Thank you very much for your inspiring words . They make you want to live up to future expectations.
Philippa

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Reviewed July 15, 2009

Loved our stay here....We stayed in the Sentinel's Chamber. The floors are beautiful. The castle has a moat and drawbridge and a pool and vegetable/fruit garden. Wish we had been able to stay more than 1 night. Really awesome place.
My only minor complaint is all the cobwebs that are way up high....with the lights on, lying in bed they are noticable.
Incredibly quiet. Quiet like I've never heard before, actually.

  • Stayed: July 2009, traveled with family
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Thank Traveller111Usa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
tennessus, Propriétaire at Chateau de Tennessus, responded to this reviewResponded January 28, 2015
Google Translation

Je vous remercie beaucoup d'avoir pris le temps d'écrire ce commentaire très détaillé sur votre séjour à Tennessus.
Je suis sur que les gens vont beaucoup apprécié le temps que vous avez consacré pour donner tous ces renseignements sur le chateau et ses chambres.
J'éspère pouvoir vous accueillir moi meme la prochaine fois!
Cordialement,
Philippa

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Reviewed April 21, 2009

Saw Chateau Tennessus on a TV show called "Keys to the Castle" (I think on TLC). The show contained 4 French chateaux you can stay in. My 12 year old remarked, when the show highlighted the "Sentinel" room at the top of the keep, "cool!" So I booked it and didn't tell her (or my other 14 year old daughter) until we drove up to the property.

We were going to France (Paris) for Spring Break and were looking for day trips or at least one overnight trip. Took the TGV to Poitiers (hour and a half) and rented a Renault from Avis at the "gare." (Right outside the station.) The drive from Poitiers to Tennessus would have taken 40 minutes but we got delightfully lost in Parthenay. Our "detour" included going the wrong way on a one-way in the old part of the city. What fun!

Keep in mind that the closest "civilization" is Parthenay. Not much to do around the Chateau and note that not many restaurants are open on Mondays in the area. We ended up eating in Parthenay and then at Le Chapeau Rouge in St. Loup (little village in the middle of nowhere, but worth seeing). Ventured to nearby Gorge but it was Monday and it appeared "no one was home." Skinny rural roads that require paying attention. But they were all really fun, "non-touristy" destinations.

Back to the Castle. Philippa Freeland is absolutely wonderful. We arrived early and had to wait just a short while for the "room to be completely ready." Actually, it was not acceptable to Mrs. Freeland for us to go to our room because the fresh cut flowers were not there yet! And the whole experience was like that: incredible attention to detail.

Keep in mind the chateau was built in 1400 something! Although meticulously and lovingly renovated, it is an old stone castle! The walk up to our room at the top of the keep was four stories up a narrow (they were smaller back then) circular stone stairway. (When I needed something that I forgot in the car, I sent one of my girls.) My wife and I slept on the bed and our two girls slept on mattresses that were stored under the bed.

Only very minor irritations hardly worth mentioning about our room (Sentinel at the top of the keep) is that there is a walkway on the roof open to all guests. Even though all guests are asked to "walk lightly" and "take shoes off in their rooms" (for quiet purposes) people don't do so when they go on the roof. And they will go on the roof because it is the best view of the countryside around!

And even though great effort has been made to make the castle have "modern" conveniences (while retaining old world charm), I found the room - during the night - somewhat cold and drafty.

But you will feel safe. There are enough old world weapons on the walls of the room to start a small war! As my youngest daughter said "that's really cool!" A sword, spears, dagger, shield, helmet, axe, and assorted arrowheads. All safely and permanently affixed to the walls, so not to worry that you will discover your kids jousting.

The room has a small kitchen in one corner (used to be a turret from which to pour boiling oil?) and a bathroom in the other corner (watch your head.) I was constantly wondering how they managed to get all of the modern conveniences into the castle with minimal "visual" intrusion.

In conclusion, this is a very, very worthwhile adventure that I will (and have) heartily recommend to others. Good for 2 to 3 day stay or a week if you really want to relax and do nothing. Such an authentic experience - from the working drawbridge and mote to the top of the keep - and such impeccable management, it is a worthwhile destination in of itself!

Just for my daughters to be able to answer "What did you do on Spring Break?" with "We stayed in a 15th century castle with a drawbridge in the French countryside" makes our Chateau Tennessus stay one of those lifetime memorable family experiences. Everyone should stay in a castle at least once their lives and this a perfect one to live out your "kingly" (or "queenly" or "princessly") fantasy.

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled with family
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Thank CirruslyAloft
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 31, 2008

This is a truely amazing place to stay. The castle itself creates a fantastic first impression as you draw up - complete with moat, drawbridge (which you are let loose on and allowed to pull up!) and a few friendly cats and dogs! We were greeted by the English owner who had some fresh flowers in her hand ready to put them in our room - what a lovely welcome!

We were the only guests during our stay and the owner encouraged us to snoop around the other b&b and self catering rooms - heaven! The self catering apartment (in its own little tower) is lovely and the b&b rooms are so impressive. Each room measures at least 10x10m - two have their own working fireplaces - and all are adorned with antique furniture. Don't expect to find TVs, ipod docking stations or modern equipment - but that all adds to the charm of this place, as a genuinely authentic, atmospheric experience.

The rooftop is a lovely place to sit and enjoy the views with the complimentary champagne you are left on arrival. The grounds are equally as lovely, with a swimming pool (a bit too cold for our time of year but would be fab in summer!) and a rowing boat that you can take around the moat. We were very lucky as the owner went away for two days of our stay, leaving us alone in the castle!!

The breakfast was great - bacon and cheese bread, toast, cereals, yoghurts, fresh orange juice and tea/coffee. We spent our breakfasts chatting and reading the guest books which date back to the 1990s - not one has anything negative to say at all.

Nearby Parthenay is lovely for somewhere to eat in the evenings (about a 10 min drive from the castle) and the medival quarters are well worth a look in the daytime. The owner also made us a gormet picnic one night when we were too tired to go out which was really reasonable with lovely food.

The castle was absolutely beautiful - we had a fantastic stay and overall it comes highly recommended.

Stayed: October 2008
Thank pontypool1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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