This foodie, family-friendly guesthouse is an idyllic bolthole near the fairytale medieval town of Carcassonne, deep in the Languedoc region of southern France. It’s intimate and cosy, yet each of the 5 rooms is large and groups can rent the stylishly renovated farmhouse in its entirety.
Owner Amélie has poured love into the building’s transformation and her passion for the guesthouse and the local area is infectious. It’s easy to see how its beauty can get under your skin – it’s set in bucolic gardens complete with a pool and a babbling river, and the popular village of Conques sur Orbiel is nearby.
Rooms: Wonderfully stylish and spacious, the 5 rooms in the main house are a triumph of colour and design. One of the largest, Carlota, is a beautiful light-filled space with a bioethanol fireplace (which opens out into both the bedroom and the lounge), plus a lovely wooden floor and sunny colours inspired by Mexico, Colombia and Brazil. The bathrooms are excellent, too: all have walk-in showers, and Carlota has a white oval bath. We also love the look of The Atelier, a 2-storey cottage blessed with a large workshop-style window; it’s big enough to accommodate 3 child beds and makes a great option for families.
Food: Blissfully, breakfast is served whenever you like – and it’s a spread you certainly won’t want to miss. Croissants, warm brioche, local eggs, cured ham, coffee and jams made from the garden’s fruit all feature, and they taste even better when enjoyed under the chestnut trees in summer or in the charming dining room during winter. Lunch is also a culinary delight (homemade soups, carpaccio of scallops, chanterelle omelette), and the delicious dinners have led to cook and Amélie’s mother Françoise being awarded a Michelin fork. Expect the likes of homemade ravioli, stuffed courgette flowers and goats’ cheese terrine. If you decide to eat out, Amélie can recommend restaurants in the village and there are a host of options a short drive away in Carcassonne.
Top Tip: Resist the temptation to stay here all day! The Languedoc is one of the most rewarding regions in France, so get out and explore. You’ll find wild hilltop castles, vineyards and the Canal du Midi all within easy reach.
Customer review: “We had such a beautiful time. This is one of those rare and truly special places. The attention to detail is spectacular and Amélie and her mum created the best food we had on our gastronomic 3-week trip across Spain and France. The pictures can’t do this place justice. Highly recommended!”
Lisa, United Kingdom (08.09.14)
i-escape gift: a picnic basket or an aperitif with tapas (according to season)