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Villa 23033 Normandy, France

Sleeps: 22

Le Castelet
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Situated on the site of a small medieval castle, this superb Napoleon III chateau is ideally placed to visit all of Normandy’s top tourist sites - including the Bayeux Tapestry, Mont St Michel and the D-Day beaches. Located just outside the cathedral city of Coutances in four acres of parkland, the chateau is also within easy reach of deserted beaches with magnificent sand dunes. It has golf courses and horse riding nearby and a splash pool.

The Chateau, built in 1870, was originally a judge’s summer house and has a classic feel with its two turrets and enormous entertaining room (over 76 square metres) with an impressive white baby grand piano. French windows open out onto a sun terrace, whilst upstairs provides 7 luxurious bedrooms, each with en suite bath or shower rooms. Downstairs there is a large kitchen and downstairs bedroom.

The chateau is a perfect venue for family reunions, celebrations or small business events. It can either be rented on a self catering basis, or as a B&B with daily cleaning. Delicious suppers, lunches and picnics can be provided whichever option you choose. It is accessible by air, flying to Dinard from Stansted, Bristol or East Midlands, or is just over an hour away from the ferry ports of Cherbourg, St Malo or Caen. Alternatively, it is just 3 hours from Paris by train.

Outside of the summer the chateau can be rented on its own for smaller groups of up to 16 at a discounted rate. Please enquire.

Interior and grounds

There are five double rooms, a twin, and a triple room all with en suite bath or shower rooms, which sleep up to 13 people. A fold up bed for a child and 3 cribs for babies can also be provided.

The ground floor is large, light and open plan with double French doors and four sets of large windows. The dining room and salon are separated by a 1930s white baby grand piano, with stunning working fire places at both ends of the room. There are two huge leather sofas and plenty of additional chairs in the salon. The dining room easily seats 14. The kitchen/breakfast room stretches across the width of the house. There is a large range, a huge wood burning oven and hot plate, a small electric oven and a microwave. There is also a fridge, freezer and dishwasher. The laundry room comprises of a washer, dryer, and an American style fridge/freezer with an ice maker whicxh is now located in the block with the cottages. There is a library area in the salon, there is a games table, large satellite TV, with DVD and video players along with a wide range of books, DVDs and Videos. Wifi internet access is also available. Just of the hallway, there is a cloakroom with WC.

On the first floor four en suite bedrooms of luxury hotel standard are individually furnished with antiques. The Napoleon is a large double room with a sofa and a huge en suite bathroom. A bath stands in the centre of the room with fantastic views over the garden. The Louis room is lined with stunning green silk and has an empire style bed. The Josephine room has twin beds and is lined with yellow silk. The Marie Antoinette room is a substantial double with an elegant draped bed and silk sofa.

There are two en suite bedrooms on the second floor. The Joan of Arc room is ideal for families, with a double, single and room for fold up bed and cot. The Dauphin room has a claw foot bath in front of a window with fantastic views over the garden. It has a draped half tester king size bed.

Also within the estate are two cottages that are hired in conjunction with the chateau. Both have two bedrooms and are just 50m from the chateau.

The four acres of parkland which surround the chateau provide a beautiful backdrop at any time of the year, with a colourful composition of trees planted when the chateau was built in 1870. The 30ft laurel hedges that encircle the grounds allow for a very private setting. In the summer, there are plenty of places to relax and enjoy the surroundings, either on the deck chairs or in the seating and dining areas spread across the ground, cooking on the barbeque, on the three swings in the garden, or in the 5.5 metre swimming pool. Two double gated entrances mean that it is easy to drive in one and out of the other, and there is parking for dozens of cars – even more in the summer when the grassed areas can be used.

Location and local information

The Nearest ports are Cherbourg and Caen, both of which are about 100km from the chateau. The nearest town is Coutances 12km away.

Key highlights in the Normandy region are the magnificent abbey at Mont St Michel, the famous Bayeaux 1066 tapestry and cathedral, and the D-Day beaches. There are numerous gastronomic tours catering for all tastes – including cider and calvados farms, a snail farm, a bee keeping farm, a fois gras farm, and a cheese factory. There are nearby deserted beaches which offer panoramic views and plenty of chateaux, castles and gardens.

Our top 10 things to do during a stay in Normandy would include (in no particular order): Mont Saint Michel, Caen (great for shopping and museums), Granville (our local picturesque seaside resort, very lively with a medieval fortified old town). The D-Day beaches (To do them properly, you would need at least a day and include a visit to some museums and exhibitions). Bayeux (for the 1066 tapestry and the medieval town), local sandy beaches (huge and always empty). The cathedral and botanical gardens in Coutances (with music and lights on summer evenings).

There are large and helpful tourist offices in Coutances (behind the Hotel de Ville) and Saint Lô (in Place Charles de Gaulle (under the rather strange metal viewing tower construction). There is a small office in our neighbouring village of Cerisy-la-Salle in the Maison Cantonal, across the road from the main square and opposite the Post Office (opening times are limited in the Cerisy office).

Local activities include horse riding, donkey treks, golf, bungee jumping, paint-balling, tennis, swimming, calvados tasting, food trails and fishing.

Catering and services

The chateau has a drinks licence for when it is hired on a B&B/fully catered basis.

The dining room seats up to 14 people round one table. Superb 4-course candle-lit dinners are available from 45 euros a head. We have a restaurant licence for drinks, with bottles of wine from 16 euros to 150 euros. Dinner is often served on the terrace in summer. Buffets can be arranged for larger parties. When we are doing the catering you can use our bar or pay a corkage charge of 10 euro a bottle for wine or 15 euro a bottle for champagne.

Simple kitchen suppers are available for parties of up to six – two course suppers cost 18 euros. Dining room suppers are available for 1 to 14 people – two courses for 24 euro. The lighter suppers are designed for the days when you can’t manage four courses! Guests can use the kitchen to make light snacks during the day or lunches can be arranged from 12 euros a head. Picnics can be arranged with a day’s notice.

With exclusive hire bookings you have the choice of dining together, or having a children’s supper in the kitchen between 5pm and 6pm. Children’s meals are 12 euros a head for two courses and a drink. Mothers are welcome to use the kitchen at anytime to prepare baby food.

You can opt for self catering or B&B. For B&B there is a daily charge of 144 euro for breakfast and cleaning for up to 12 people. Additional guests are charged at 12 euro a head to a maximum of 14. Breakfast includes freshly baked pastries, breads, homemade jams, yoghurts, cereals, orange juice, tea and coffee.

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