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“The setting is the big plus point”
Review of Le Prieure

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Le Prieure
Reviewed July 2, 2012

I would have awarded 3.5 stars if possible. This is my fifth visit to Le Prieure over the past 15 years or so: we go back every few years for a special occasion as it is in one of the most magical and delightful spots in France. The outstandingly good point about the Prieure is its location and setting, perched on a bluff high above the Loire with stunning views over the river to the plain beyond. The air is filled with bird song from morning 'till night, as well as a chorus of frogs and other sounds of nature. At night, it is silent and a wonderful sleep is almost guaranteed. The hotel is based around an ancient Priory so it is very atmospheric. We have stayed in the 'residences' - basically 1950s chalets in the grounds that have no view of the river - and we have stayed in a suite in the main hotel with vast terrace and huge rooms (room 9). This time we chose a superior room, which was entered from an external doorway beneath the hotel dining room. It had a slightly overgrown garden and fairly good views (though a little low to appreciate the view over a hedge). It cost 245 Euros per night, room only, with breakfast on offer at 21 Euros or 8 Euros for a "quick" breakfast, so the Priory is certainly not cheap. And that is really its problem: balancing its price with what it actually delivers. In the decade and a half I have been going it has done little to update or improve its facilities and decor. Yes, part of the charm is the old-school French design ot Toile De Jouy fabric-covered walls and heavy dark-wood furniture, but the bathrooms are very dated (and our drains smelled constantly for four days) and accessories like pictures and lamps now look more junk shop than antique shop. Plus points were supremely comfortable beds, good hot water pressure and free wifi, all important stuff, but whereas a hotel like Les Crayeres in Reims is exquisite and traditional, Le Prieure now looks a little tired and scruffy in places. Another gripe is with the bar and restaurant. Prices are extremely high for what is on offer. A beer was 7 Euros, a 125ml glass of wine in the bar was a) poor quality and b) served in a horrible little old fashioned glass, and c) 6 Euros. Dinner menus are 35 Euros, 62 Euros and 72 Euros per person. We ate the top two menus plus a la carte over three nights, and whilst the food was good - some of it very good - it was not really of the haute-cuisine standard to merit these prices. The furniture in the bar/lounge is also looking a bit old and shabby now. The grounds of the hotel are a big let-down: as others have noted, the flower beds immediately around the hotel entrance are lovely, but elsewhere in the extensive woodland and park setting the grounds are weedy and poorly maintained and areas like the grass around the swimming pool, little mini-golf course and tennis court all unkempt. Staff vary from very polite and welcoming, to off-hand. This is a hotel that sees a lot of functions, weddings and touring parties as well as individual guests, and like all such hotels it is easy for the management and staff to see you as a number passing through - which at 245 Euros per night room only is not how one wants to be greeted and treated. I realise this review is mostly negative, and yet we left thinking that some time in the future we would *probably* be back. The place is overpriced and the product is good but could be a lot better, but when the sun shines and you sit on the terrace or in the restaurant overlooking that view, it really is magical. Whether you will find that enough to compensate for the Prieure's shortcomings is another matter. It is a pity, because this could be one of the best hotels in France if the owners and managers cared a little more and spent some money updating sympathetically and sorting out some fundamental problems.

Room Tip: Residences have no Loire view but are comfortable. Rooms in hotel vary - ask about the view of the r...
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank scotsmantravelling
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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29 - 35 of 99 reviews

Reviewed June 22, 2012

The Benedictines always seemed to find alluring locations for their monasteries. Le Prieure near the lovely town of Saumur is no different. Perched high on a hillside, overlooking the river as it flows serenely past, with wonderful views of the countryside all around, this hotel offers the traveler a place of luxury, rest, peace and a really lovely terrace bar and restaurant.

We stayed here on a recommendation from Brittany Ferries and some diligent research on my own behalf. It did not disappoint. Although some time ago now the experience lingers memorable for both of us.

Reception was very good and the attention to detail and friendliness of all staff remained throughout our stay. We stayed for a few days while touring the Loire and its chateaux and caves! Accommodation was in the older part of the building and it was very pleasant and atmospheric. We had a lovely view of the river far below. The building has many steps, which might be an issue for some with mobility issues, but for that it retains its charm and monastic feel.

The restaurant was very nice and had a relaxed air about it. We enjoyed a table each evening from where we had panoramic views. But we were constantly distracted - the food was very, very good. Equally the service was faultless. The menu and wine list were more than adequate. The after-dinner drink on the terrace was a special moment each evening. We both liked this place a lot. We will hope to return some day when next in Saumur (and room prices drop back a little!).

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Coolnacarrick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 3, 2012

Dear Madam, dear Sir,
We wanted to thank you for your kind and impressive comments on trip advisor with regards to your recent stay.
We are really pleased to learn you had a very nice stay.
Thank you very much for the description of the main building and its panoramic views on the Loire river.
I am delighted that you enjoyed our service and your stay with us and we hope to have the opportunity to welcome you back very soon.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 14, 2012

The hotel is in a beautiful location on a cliff above the Loire with terrific views. The ambience is of a slightly old-fashioned spa hotel. Our room was very comfortable - the bed was probably one of the best I've ever had in a hotel. The bathroom is on the small side and the arrangement of toilet and bidet in the loo is a trifle awkward. If you are in any way larger than average size manoeuvring requires some forward planning. The reception staff were extremely helpful.

Our only complaint is the restaurant but our experience of the restaurant has coloured our impression of the whole hotel. The food is good but definitely on the pricey side for what you get - the price charged exceeds the standard of cuisine. But the service in the restaurant is ill-mannered, unattentive and incredibly slow. On the night we stayed we had to wait almost 45 minutes for our order to be taken (only the maitre d' was allowed to take orders in spite of waiting staff standing round doing nothing) and a further hour and a half before even the first course was served. It was a disaster and requests for information about the delay were met only with impatient shrugs. The cost of a meal for 2? £160.

I doubt we would stay here again - or if we did would eat in local restaurants.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank returnjourney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 3, 2012

"Dear Madam, dear Sir,
we are very pleased to follow up your comment.
We thank you very much for the description of our location and for the helpful reception staff and we are sorry to learn our cuisine and service did not match your expectations.
Our restaurant propose two types of cuisine: a traditional one on the lunch from 25 € to 32 € and a gastronomic one on the evening with three different setmenus (34 €, 54 € and 72 € for our 5 courses menu), "à la carte" and suggestions to give a better choice to our guests.
We are sorry to learn you found the service ill-mannered and unattentive: we always try to give the best service possible and if our staff did not get satisfaction, being rude or with shrugs, do not hesitate to contact us, such a behaviour being of course not acceptable in our restaurant. We hope to meet you again and have a second chance to give you a better image, and we thank you again for your feedback and appreciate you taking out the time to write your views.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2012

We stayed in this hotel last year. Very friendly staff and nice clean room. In the morning you can enjoy your breakfast while overlooking Loire. The restaurant is just excellent, and we went there last week for dinner. The food is local French and very well done, and the prices of food and beverage are OK. I have only one word for this place: EXCELLENT. We will be back next year.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled on business
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Thank Olga_from_Denmark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 19, 2012

Wonderful, unique location and setting: the hotel is a historic Benedictine lodge built hundreds of years ago set high on a cliff overlooking the Loire valley. As others have said, the views are stunning and, along with its central location, one of the reasons we wanted to stay here. We made it our home base and from here were easily able to explore the nearby Loire villages and chateaux like Saumur, Frontevraud L'Abbaye (UNESCO site), Montsoreau, Breze, Montgeoffroy, and others.

The hotel ambiance was amazing, with the old stone walls, the winding staircases, and the antique windows. Outside, there were lovely terraces for relaxing and country roads for strolling. The staff were welcoming and helpful in suggesting activities and providing directions. We ate in the serene dining room one evening: the gourmet meal was delicious and the presentations just awesome. The waiters ensured that all the courses arrived in flawless succession. As in most of France, the appetizers and main dishes were mostly meat-based.

Our room was quite spacious, with a large bed and lovely seating area near the window overlooking the river. We spent significant time just gazing out the windows. The bathroom had to be one of the largest we had while in France. The shower was great though the 1/2 glass shower "curtain" allowed some water to get onto the floor.

This was truly a one-of-a kind hotel and we completely agree with the other Tripadvisor posters who wrote that staying here provides memories of a lifetime!

Note: for the best view, be sure to request a room in the main building.

Room Tip: Rooms in the main building have the best Loire view.
  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank HollyMollyB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 26, 2012

Beautiful old buildings greet you as you take the small winding road up to Le Prieure.

Our greeting was friendly and the ambience and decor was great. Just what I'd wanted as a 50th Birthday surprise for my partner and though our bedroom was not large, the decor was stunning and the views over the River Loire matched it. Glamorous historic old style would be my description.

Our meal was lovely and not particularly expensive, again seated at a table overlooking the Loire made it exceptional and the service was excellent.

We had braved the cooler weather (late April) and been the sole inhabitants of the open air pool, which would be lovely in the summer but "heated" would be an exaggeration! Mustn't grumble. Beautiful hotel in lovely grounds and idyllic setting.

Room Tip: Most rooms are accessed via a winding stione staircase so disabled people may need to ask for a grou...
  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank jrapeter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 2, 2011

This place is simply wonderful and perhaps the best place I have ever stayed. The combination of the room, the view, the ambiance, location, staff...basically everything about this place was so pleasing. Leaving was very hard to do! Amazing views of the Loire; seeing the sun rise over the river was beautiful. Perched on the hillside, it feels a bit isolated -- but in a good way. Very quiet and peaceful. And romantic! Saumur is about 15 minutes away and if you are looking for a restaurant off-site on a Sunday, good luck finding a place. But the hotel restaurant is very good, so dining there is hardly a sacrifice and in any case makes for a more relaxing and enjoyable meal knowing the way home is a few steps away rather than a drive. In short, I highly recommend this place. I hope I get back here some day.

Room Tip: Hard to see how any room could be better than room No. 2. Stunning views.
  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Billtowner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Le Prieure

Address: Near Saumur in Anjou | rue du Comte de Castellane, 49350 Chenehutte-Treves-Cunault, France
Location: France > Pays de la Loire > Maine et Loire > Chenehutte-Treves-Cunault
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Chenehutte-Treves-Cunault
Price Range: $153 - $287 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 36
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Also Known As:
Le Prieure Hotel Chenehutte-Treves-Cunault
Le Prieure France/Maine Et Loire

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