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“Great stay at Blaye, France, Wine Country”
Review of Villa St. Simon

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Villa St. Simon
Ranked #2 of 8 Blaye B&B and Inns
Reviewed July 2, 2013

Very friendly staff, nice family oriented hotel, great location in a surprising city. Close to vineyards, we recommend St. Emilion tour you can buy at the hotel.
We want to thanks Clarissa for her kindness and Thomas for his wine lessons.
Our best regards from Pilar, Franco and Aldo.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Aldo P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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67 - 73 of 215 reviews

Reviewed July 2, 2013

We were swept away by the atmosphere, the personality and the unique charm of the 19th century Villa St Simon and the people who are working there. If you want to discover the Bordeaux wines, culture and appreciate a B&B that is like a home - this is the place to visit. Unforgettable in a very relaxed way. Highly recommended!
Margareta and Anders, Gothenburg, Sweden

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank margareta s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 20, 2013

The hosts are very accommodating, helped us plan our 3 days stay, to experience and learn about the area and its wine, the beach and the cognac. We stayed in the room on the top floor facing the street at the back, it is a large room with a large and soft comfortable bed, a lounge suite, a large TV with multiple channels DVDs available for use when you want time to chill. We booked this room which is a bit more expensive because it had an air conditioner and based on other reviews rooms get hot in summer, whilst the days were unseasonable cool we did have a 30 degree day and we used the air conditioner, it is a portable air conditioner and it was very noisy, we opened the window at night and there was a good breeze but it did let in some street noise, this was not too bad.
We had breakfast one morning, a simple breakfast of local bread, jams fresh fruit, tea and coffee, also available is a well equiped kitchen which has a fridge, stove etc we used on other days and this suited us, well.
There is also a good supply of books available for guests to read, wines available for selection and payment when it takes your fancy and off course across the road is a lovely park for a picnic. The Citadel is also nice to walk around.
We did the wine debunking, which was a great opportunity to mix with other guests and have a very relaxed and informative introduction to Bordeaux wines.

Room Tip: In cool weather and you are prepared to walk up the stairs with your luggage the top rooms are the b...
  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank chris l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 16, 2013

Lovely room (lots of stairs!). Interesting citadel in the town right on the doorstep. Disappointed that breakfast was extra, on top of a fairly pricey room rate. However after a mix-up with the bill we were really impressed with the polite and speedy refund. Overall recommended.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Johnwad13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 25, 2013

If you are the kind of person who thinks that a Marriott makes a wonderful destination, then the Villa St Simon is absolutely the worst kind of place for you. It has no modern facilities (apart from spotty Wi-Fi, especially toward the top of the building), requires you to transport baggage up several flights of stairs depending on your allocated room, and offers a decorative style that most interior designers would barf at. But it is an extremely friendly establishment that cannot do enough for its guests, it is in the heart of a town that is a great base for touring the Bordeaux wine areas (the ferry to the Medoc area is about 200m away), and is connected to good restaurants and wineries for those who like good food. In fact, it's just a great place to stay. Free parking is available across the road from the villa. Recommended.

Room Tip: There's no lift, so a room on the 1st floor is best if you don't like stairs.
  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank 12Knocksinna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 22, 2013

Blaye is not exactly a jumping party town. At least, not on a very wet May weekend. But if there's anywhere to make you feel better, it's the Villa St Simon. Beautifully renovated, with charming and polyglot hosts (and excellent breakfasts), the Villa makes you feel, even on a first visit, that you're old and valued friends. Leslie and Clarissa seem to know everyone in town and for miles around, both French and expatriate, and their advice on wine, restaurants and where to shop is impeccable (thanks for the Bossis tip, Les; I took the XO).
This place is the exact opposite of a chain hotel. It's quirky, individualistic, interesting, fun for all ages (our kids loved it), and worth every penny.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Julian A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 8, 2013

This B&B is located right in the town centre within a stroll of the restaurants and bars. It is also within an easy stroll of the Citadel, a17th century fortification and Unesco World Heritage site. Blaye itself is situated on the banks of the Gironde Estuary, with easy access to the vineyards of Cotes de Blaye, and by ferry (a minute's walk from the B&B) to the Medoc.

The building itself is a town house which has been sympathetically restored. The front door opens into the breakfast room which is wood panelled. Reception sits at the bottom of a stone staircase which spirals up the centre of the building. There are three floors with bedrooms, two on two of them and three on the third. The first floor has a seating area around a table, and a small kitchen area in which meals can be prepared. The sympathetic restoration continues on the remaining floors.

The rooms are similarly restored in a rustic style. The floors are wooden, partially covered by rugs, and a little uneven. The windows are a little on the small side and shuttered, and the furniture is all dark wood. This all fits perfectly with the style of the house, and as can be seen by other reviews on Tripadvisor, most visitors love it. I certainly felt the manner of the restoration was perfect for the building, but others who are expecting something a little more modern may be a little disappointed by the rustic finish.

There were a couple of very small issues. The water pressure in the shower was fine - until someone elsewhere in the house used theirs, and then it dropped to a very low level. Fortunately that does not affect the temperature, so the rapid heating or cooling of water experienced in some showers does not occur here. The stairway is quite steep, and there is no lift (installing one would detract from the aesthetics of the house, whereas the staircase enhances it) but this place is not for anyone with mobility issues. Finally, the ferry leaves from directly opposite starting from 7am, and there is a risk you may be awoken by it if staying in the front of the house. That said, the down sides were minimal, and only a few will be put off by them.

The owners, Les and Clarissa, and their staff are extremely friendly. They make sure they are on first name terms with all the guests, and are always happy to offer a recommendation on a restaurant, place to visit or a wine. And on the subject of wine, we partook of the debunking wine session offered by Les. It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening learning about wine in general and Bordeaux in particular, tasting the wines, and talking wine with fellow guests whom we had not previously met. We also went on the Medoc tour, and had an excellent day touring the region, seeing some of the beautiful chateaux, visiting a couple and sampling their wines, and having lunch in a restaurant in St Julien. Again, the fellow guests were good company, as was owner Les as he drove us around and imparted his knowledge.

I have rated this house as a 4, but only as there are no halves! The couple of drawbacks noted above mean it doesn't get a 5 but it is as close as it could be. It is clear that many of the guests return again and again. Next time the Bordeaux region calls, I shall have no hesitation in heading to Villa St Simon.

Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
Thank Andy P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Villa St. Simon

Address: 8 cours du General de Gaulle, 33390, Blaye, France
Location: France > Nouvelle-Aquitaine > Gironde > Blaye
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 8 B&Bs / Inns in Blaye
Price Range: $99 - $175 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Villa St Simon - Your home from home in Bordeaux. Villa St Simon in Bordeaux offers charming period furnished rooms and modern equipped self-catering apartments. The 1860 villa is an ideal base for your guided or self-explored wine tours in the Bordeaux region and a great place for a relaxing holiday. Blaye is in the heart of the Côtes de Blaye and Côtes de Bourg winelands and only a 20min ferry trip away from the Medoc with its famous first growths and a 40min drive away from the City of Bordeaux and St Emilion. The Citadel, UNESCO World Heritage site, traditional French cuisine, and great wines of the region will make your stay with us a unique and memorable experience - that should not be missed! ... more   less 
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