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“Top-notch Experience, Harvest Tour 2012”

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Chateau Coulon Laurensac
Ranked #1 of 3 Latresne B&B and Inns
Reviewed October 16, 2012

My wife and I recently returned from an excellent week in Bordeaux, visiting Ronald and Margaret Rens at Chateau Coulon Laurensac. We attended the 2012 Harvest Tour.
I have been a lover of French wines for over twenty years. My wife and I have travelled extensively in Europe, and without exception our "Experience" at The Bordeaux Wine Experience was top-notch. Imagine visiting First Growth Grand Cru vineyards from an insider perspective, eating lunches prepared by top Chefs within the winery itself, and enjoying the experience in a very intimate setting. I found the wine, food and hospitality exemplary. Ronald and Margaret went out of their way to make us feel at home. Ronald is the quintessential host, who is very knowledgeable about wine, food and life. He is passionate about wine and intimately involved with his guests having a special experience. If you are looking for a Hotel setting in Monte Carlo, I would say look elswhere. The accomodations are very pleasant with new bathrooms with cozy rooms. The Chateau is lovely and was built in the 1790's.
In closing, if you are a lover of wine and food, I don't think you can get any better value for the price. To try to experience this type of trip without the knowledge of someone like Ronald would be a big mistake. My wife and I will surely visit again. Ronald and Margaret have a plaque that was given to them that says, "many who come as strangers leave as friends". This is definitely the case at Chateau Coulon Laurensac and the Bordeaux Wine Experience.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Anthony S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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25 - 31 of 46 reviews

Reviewed August 10, 2012

What a delightful surprise. My lovely wife Beth decided to celebrate my milestone birthday by treating me to a wine tour of Bordeaux, something we had been talking about for some time. The catch was that neither one of us is big on “group tours”, but we realized that if we wanted to experience the grand chateaux, exceptional wines and fine cuisine of Bordeaux we could not simply do it on our own.

Beth did some research and found the “Bordeaux Wine Experience”. By its description, the Bordeaux Wine Experience seemed rather exceptional - particularly given the tour’s full-bodied and richly coloured daily itineraries. It was also pointed out that the tour group would be kept to no more than thirteen people.

From the moment we arrived at Chateau Coulon Laurensac, Margaret and Ronald Rens greeted us with grace and charm. Even Easy, the family guard dog got into the act by acknowledging our arrival with a few high pitched barks. We felt very welcome and were anxious to get started on our Bordeaux experience.

The four-day tour was chalk a bloc with visits to some of Bordeaux’s finest chateaux, mostly Premiere Grand Cru Classé, accompanied by outstanding wine tastings - simply superb. Exceptional lunches at some of the chateaux were followed by equally outstanding dinners in the evenings at some of the best restaurants in Bordeaux - delicious as well as delightful.

As the tour progressed we came to realize and appreciate Ronald’s vast knowledge of wines and wine making, the history of Bordeaux, his outstanding network of wine makers, amusing stories and of course the wine tastings. As part of the tour group we were automatically beneficiaries of all his many years of hard work that featured visits to exceptional chateaux, and tastings of many superior Bordeaux vintages. Behind the scenes there was a great deal of attention to detail, and as a result everything went very smoothly, and we were made to feel very special – imagine arriving at a chateau that is flying your national flag to welcome you.

You soon realize that for team Margaret & Ronald this is not simply another job or another tour group. They went out of their way to ensure that everyone was enjoying the “Bordeaux Wine Experience”, had everything they needed, and were comfortable during their stay at Chateau Coulon Laurensac. This is their passion, and we felt very fortunate to be a part of it.

Ronald’s expertize and the easygoing manner in which he shares his extensive knowledge of wines and wine making are conveyed in a very charming and witty fashion - which is designed to please rather than intimidate. No matter what your level of wine knowledge and appreciation, we would recommend the “Bordeaux Wine Experience” to anyone interested in tasting and learning more about fine Bordeaux wines. You will soon come to realize that on this tour “Life is good”!

Beth & Steve
Ottawa, Canada

Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
4  Thank Steven_B390
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2012

During Wine Grand Tour we‘ve visited First Growth Chateaux, had stunning dinners in the old-style lavish atmosphere of wine. It is such an amazing experience and unforgettable feeling when they easily open for tasting the bottle of wine of the 1st Cru Classé, that you would probably never dare to buy because of its price!
I said easily… but easily thanks to Ronald who opens the doors of wine cellars for us as well as generously shared his experience! Thanks to Margaret who behind the scenes prepared the framework (background), supervises and scrutinizes the process and allows Ronald to star.

Room Tip: You could contact Margaret to advise which one to take
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Alex D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 17, 2012

From the champagne welcoming to Chateau Coulon Laurensac by Ronald and Margaret to the Farewell dinner in the Chateau dining room and everyting in between, this was truly a GRAND tour. Each morning began with breakfast in the sunny beautiful glassed in veranda overlooking the pool and grounds. Our suite with sitting area and kitchen downstairs and spacious bedroom and bath upstairs was modern and comfortable. The central location of the Chateau ideal...making it easy to reach Pauillac, St. Julien, and Margaux to the north, Pessac-Leognan and Sauternes to the south, and St. Emilion and Pomerol to the east. And then the wine tours...visiting two to four Chateaus per day, including wonderful lunch in the intimate dining rooms of two of them. To be granted access to the most prestigious Chateaus in Bordeaux where is was clear from their interactions that Ronald had long established personal relationships was an unforgetable experience. We left at the end of the week, parting with hosts who had become friends, with a whole new appreciation of Bordeaux wines that will increase our enjoyment of them for the rest of our lives. A Grand Tour. Ainsley and Tom

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Thomas B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 10, 2012

For visit we've chosen Wine Grand Tour package. We’ve been living in a private Chateau, hosted by Ronald and Margaret. Every day Ronald and Margaret have taken care of us - delicious breakfast (French croissants were amazing) served in the Chateau, gorgeous dinners at Chateau with outstanding 1st cru wines and even bottles of warm/cold (depending on your preferences) water in the bus. Having your own key to the chateau’s gates gives you a fantastic feeling of sharing ownership.

Room Tip: Just e-mail to Ronald or Margaret in advance to receive a selection of the rooms
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank German S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 24, 2012

We looked around for a 'luxury' gite in this area extensively online before choosing this and based it on the previous reviews and unfortunately we have to say we were a tad disappointed. We have stayed in gites classed as luxury previously and this fell short in comparison in a few areas which may seem trivial but they do count. We were only given 1 bath towel and 1 hand towel each for the week, there was no welcome hamper - 1 dishwasher tablet and a local fizzy white in the fridge so its a must to visit the supermarket before you arrive. Also don't take too many clothes that need to be hung up, one very small rail in a wardrobe located in the lounge area?
The previous glowing reviews all seem to be from the wine tour customers, we were left with a feeling of 2 tier level of service given, the wine tours obviously give greatest revenue and receive the better service - no-one to say goodbye when we left at the early vacating time of 10am.
Don't get me wrong its not all bad, its a lovely setting, ideal for Bordeaux but a car is essential as the local village is quite a hike across a busy road- the pool area was great and the terrace was lovely for an evening drink or afternoon cuppa (but not much of a one as the tea cups were tiny!!!) Watch out for the mosquitoes, there is a small ditch around the perimeter with standing smelly water.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank kershawlaw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Latresne-Bordeaux, Owner at Chateau Coulon Laurensac, responded to this reviewResponded August 22, 2012

We are sorry when guests are disappointed; even if this doesn’t happen very often and even if it is only a tad. I would like to give our point of view here.

A hamper was obviously expected but I don’t know why, we never promised hampers anywhere. There is no 2-tier level of service. We do offer wine tours at our Chateau but that is a totally different package, which includes full catering like breakfasts, lunches, dinners and tours etc. This package cannot be compared with renting a self-catering unit.
Self-catering is exactly that: self-catering. I quite honestly find the remark that we give more attention and are nicer to someone who pays more, rather unsettling. It makes me think of ordering a light snack in a restaurant and then complaining because someone at the next table (who indeed paid more) gets the eight-course-tasting menu. By the way, you will find other positive comments here on Tripadvisor by our self-catering guests, even if our French teacups are not as big as English cups.
We do not guarantee an onsite presence. Our website is perfectly clear about this. A 10am checkout time is quite normal and specifically mentioned on our website.

Be assured that we will seriously think this over and work on how we can improve our quality even further.

Ronald Rens,

Owner of Chateau Coulon Laurensac
Latresne (BORDEAUX), France

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 6, 2012

We had done a lot of research and Chateau Coulon Laurensac really was the best. Unlike a lot of other reviewers, we did not select the Bordeaux Wine Experience, but only used the property for a staging base for a week in Bordeaux.
From our arrival we were made to feel at home. Roland met us at the gate, helped with the luggage, gave us a quick tour of the rooms and the property, and allowed us to settle in with a bottle of wine. While our visit was in late March, the temperatures actually reached 80F during our week. We used the outdoor tables every day for a wash-up of the days visit, planning for the evening meal, and thoughts of the next day. Roland joined us on at least two occassions and provided valuable information along with gentle chiding about not enjoying a good red Bordeaux (we are white fans). Margret stopped by twice and also went over our maps and and the great info book that each of the gites had.
Regarding the gites - great restoration effort - ours was a sitting room and dining/kitchen on the ground and two bedrooms and a bath on the second. The smaller second bedroom would be great for kids, but not two couples. They also have a larger gite with two master bedrooms and two large, separate baths that would work great for two couples.
The location was great, on the Garonne River, with easy walks and runs just out the gate. As a base for car travels it was just off the main N/S French highways and 15 minutes to downtown. A great local patisserie is in Latresne for baguettes and croissants and a small local restaurant in the old Latresne train station was a pleasant find. We highly recommend Chateau Coulon Laurensac for your next visit to Bordeaux.

Room Tip: Some of the gites are two floors so if you have trouble with stairs - ask.
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  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled with friends
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8  Thank Geezers_on_the_Go
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Chateau Coulon Laurensac

Address: 1 Chemin de Meydieu, 33360 Latresne, France
Location: France > Nouvelle-Aquitaine > Gironde > Latresne
Amenities:
Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Latresne
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A romantic château next to Bordeaux Superbly located at just 5 minutes from the centre of Bordeaux and only 20 minutes from Bordeaux Airport. The Chateau offers four charming self-catering holiday homes ("gîtes" in French): Pomerol and Sauternes, which sleeps four guests; Margaux and Pauillac, each are ideal for a couple. Perfectly situated, and equipped with a large heated pool, Chateau Coulon Laurensac provides a haven of peace and tranquility, just a few minutes drive from Bordeaux, the wine capital of the world. Chateau Coulon Laurensac has no profit motive; all proceeds of the holiday rentals are being used to maintain and restore this unique 18th century château and its beautiful grounds. ... more   less 
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