Chateau d'Olmet

Olmet et Villecun, Languedoc, France Book from Book from £95 per night

A brand-new, adults-only B&B with a small pool, serving up cool sophistication and joie de vivre in equal measures
The pace of life moves a bit slower in the tiny Languedoc hamlet of Olmet (population 14). That’s precisely the reason why Anglo-Luxembourgian couple Eric and Stephen, tired of the London rat race, decided to relocate here in 2015 to pursue their dream of opening a boutique B&B. They quickly fell in love with the local community (the feeling was mutual), and just as it's said it takes a village to raise a child, every villager lent a hand in the making of Chateau d’Olmet. From the friendly spirulina farmer down the hill, to the buzz of the neighbour’s bee hive, which provides the honey at your breakfast table, you feel the warm welcome of the whole hamlet when you stay here.

Though you can see for miles from your bedroom window, there's scarcely another house in sight on the surrounding hills. You'd never believe you're only 45 minutes from international airports (Beziers and Montpellier), making this a super-easy destination for a long weekend. Leave home in the morning and be sipping Vins de Pays poolside by noon? Yes, please.

Highs

  • Eric and Stephen are natural hosts - you leave feeling like an old friend
  • The intimate vibe: just 5 romantic bedrooms, with possibly the most comfortable beds we've ever slept in
  • Impeccable styling - that rare perfect hybrid between modern comfort and charming rustic touches
  • Delicious breakfasts, plus formal dinners or assiette capmpagnard on request, made with local veg, charcuterie and cheese
  • The peaceful location in the Languedoc countryside; great hiking nearby and sweeping views from every window

Lows

  • A hire car is a must, to get here and to reach shops/restaurants (4km). No food is on offer at lunchtime nor on Saturday nights
  • The sense of isolation won't appeal to everyone
  • No twin beds, and only Parker has a bath; the other bathrooms are shower only
  • Leaving! We would go back in a heartbeat

Best time to go

Languedoc-Rousillon has mild seasons, with summer temperatures in the mid-30s and relatively warm winters. Spring brings gorgeous wild flowers and a light breeze, while autumn lights up the surrounding hills with vibrant red and ochre foliage.

Our top tips

Lovely Med beaches are only an hour's drive away. Spend a day sunbathing on Bouzigues's golden sands, and have locally farmed oysters for lunch; there are numerous beach-shacks selling them.

Great for...

Cheap & Chic
Great Outdoors
Honeymoon
  • Boutique B&B
  • 5
  • Breakfast + dinner on request
  • Adults only
  • Closed: 12 Dec 2018 - 31 Mar 2019...
  • Heated Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Bicycles Available
  • Honesty bar
Room: Villecun Room

Rooms

A great deal of effort has gone into making the 3 suites and 2 double rooms as swish and comfortable as any top-end boutique hotel. You're surprised with little indulgences at every turn: sublimely comfy Hypnos beds (the best night’s sleep we can remember) with top-end sheets; deluxe rain showers, Nespresso machines, and high-end French toiletries. Although there are no TVs, you're given a tablet filled with movies - perfect for rainy days or lazy evenings.

Each room has its own distinct style, arrangement and mix of bohemian artefacts. We stayed in the top-floor Salagou, an open-plan suite with a massive four-poster bed and bookshelf of eclectic art and travel books. Lunas is the other top-floor suite, with a gorgeous Moroccan-style carpet and a separate sitting area. The 3rd suite, Le Jardin, is on the ground floor, with direct access onto the garden. Of the double rooms, Villecun is small-but-perfectly-formed, with a fun pink poodle print on one wall, and Parker has a bathtub for lazy soaks.

Features include:

  • Beach bag and beach towels
  • Fan
  • Hairdryer
  • Kettle (on request)
  • Movie library
  • Nespresso
  • Toiletries
  • WiFi

Eating

Breakfasts are a treat, served under the blue sky in the lavender-fringed garden in warmer weather, and in the renovated barn in cooler months (8:30-10am). Expect a spread of simple but extraordinarily good local and seasonal treats (salami with hazelnuts, honey from the neighbour’s hive!) and plenty of patisserie from the local boulangerie. Washed down with a cafetiere of French coffee, it’s a perfect start to a day of exploring the bucolic countryside.

Evening meals can be arranged with prior notice - formal dinners on Tuesday and Friday nights and assiette campagnards on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday nights. We went with the latter option; gorgeous mushroom quiches, seasonal salads, olives and regional charcuterie left us bursting at the seams.

Guests can use the well-equipped kitchen to fix their own light meals, and there's a well-stocked honesty bar filled with wine and snacks. Beyond the bar, you'll find a handful of lovely eateries a quick drive away in the town of Lodève (Le Soleil Bleu and Miniscule are recommended).

Features include:

  • Breakfast
  • Dinner by arrangement
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • Just chill out. Sun worship by the pool, read in a deckchair, wander around Olmet and watch DVDs
  • The nearby town of Lodève has a lively morning market, with typical French local produce and beautiful linens
  • There's excellent hiking throughout the region. Cirque de Mourèze is a unique natural dolomite rock formation with fabulous hiking trails (30 minutes’ drive)
  • Borrow bikes to explore or go on horseback - there's a riding stables in Olmet
  • Lake Salagou (20 minutes’ drive) has lovely beaches for picnics, as well as places to go windsurfing, fishing and kayaking
  • The picturesque Saint-Guilhem-le-Dèsert is regularly labelled the ‘Most Beautiful Village in France’. Go and see why!
  • Pèzenas, the region’s capital, is a renowned town with an excellent summer night market (30 minutes’ drive)
  • Languedoc-Roisillon is Europe’s largest wine-producing region; ask Eric and Stephen to recommend local wineries and the best vineyards
  • Spend a day in Montpellier: a beautiful historic city (45 mins' drive)
  • Join one of the B&B's public yoga sessions (on the first Sunday of each month) or book a private lesson in the barn/garden

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Cycling
  • Fishing
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Horse riding
  • Kayaking
  • Shopping / markets
  • Swimming
  • Windsurfing
  • Wine tasting
  • Yoga

Kids

Chateau d'Olmet is an adults-only B&B.

Kid Friendly: Pool

Location

Chateau d'Olmet is perched in the hilltop hamlet of Olmet-et-Villecun, 15 minutes' drive from Lodeve, near the border of Languedoc-Rouissllon and Midi-Pyrenees, in southern France.

By Air:
Béziers (73km) and Montpellier (76km) are 50 minutes’ drive away; Nîmes and Carcassonne are just under 2 hours. Toulouse is also an option (240km) - approximately 2.5 hours' drive away. You'll definitely need to hire a car to get here as there's no public transport to the hamlet.

By Train:
If you'd prefer to travel overland from the UK, there are good services to Montpellier and Avignon. If you're coming from London and your train is not direct, change in Lille (a platform change) rather than Paris (a station change).

Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.com.

More on getting to France and getting around

Airports:

  • Beziers 73.0 km BZR
  • Montpellier-Mediterranee Airport 76.0 km MPL

Other:

  • Beach 80.0 km
  • Shops 4.0 km
  • Restaurant 4.0 km

Our guests' ratings...

Based on 15 independent reviews from i-escape guests

10/10
Room
9/10
Food
10/10
Service
10/10
Value
10/10
Overall

This is really special. Eric and Steven are fabulous hosts giving top class service in their beautiful guest house. This is a B&B extraordinaire. Beautiful. Peaceful. Comfortable. Loved being able to use the guest kitchen and have a quiet DIY supper in some nights, as well as enjoying great local restaurants and the delicious Assiette Campagnard that Eric prepared for us one night. The only thing I could possibly suggest is that they heat the swimming pool, but that would not stop me going back in a flash.

10/10,

Loved the attention to detail and cleanliness

10/10,

The most wonderful place to stay. I can’t recommend it highly enough. Eric was so attentive, yet unobtrusive - a tricky balance which many places get wrong. It was beautifully refurbished, stunningly located and so quiet. Eric also allowed us to stay as long as we wished after the checkout time, offering us more towels if we wanted to swim. Nothing was too much trouble. We will be back and for a longer stay.

10/10,

Eric and Stephen are fantastic hosts. Nothing was too much trouble. The room was beautifully appointed, the setting delightful and this was the perfect place for a restful few days.

10/10,

We have just returned from an amazing week long stay with Eric and Stephen. They have clearly worked incredibly hard to create an amazing escape in a truly spectacular setting in rural France. We honestly loved everything about their Chateau especially our super king bed, fluffy towels and powerful rain shower.
Eric and Stephen were great hosts and quickly established our likes and dislikes tailoring their advice accordingly. They helped us plan our itinerary every morning which was a God send as the weather was a little unpredictable in early May. We throughly enjoyed our stay and will be recommending to all of our friends and family. Thank you so much for your hospitality!

10/10,

We loved it here - it's almost too good to share - Eric and Stephen are the most gracious hosts, the views are stunning, the welcome is tremendous and the decor is pleasing- we hope to return one day soon.

10/10,

Beautiful location, fantastic building with incredible attention to detail. Rooms are lovely, everything about Ch. Olmet oozes quality and you will not meet a more attentive, helpful, informative and obliging host than Eric. I cannot recommend Ch. Olmet highly enough - comfortable beds, lovely linen, great sized rooms, delicious breakfast and even the option to prepare you own meals when you need a break from the fabulous but rich meals offered by the many restaurants in the region. This was our first experience with i-escape, based on our time at Ch. Olmet we will certainly be using the website again. Eric has set the bar very high indeed!

10/10,

What a wonderful stay - we were so well looked after by Eric and Stephen, anything we asked about or for was provided. The Chateau is spotless and really comfortable. Having tablets in the rooms was a quirky addition that we liked. Couldn't fault our stay. We enjoyed the walking and canoeing in the region.

10/10,

We had a wonderful time and loved Chateau d'Olmet. Eric and Stephen welcome you and actually make you feel you are at home as nothing is too much trouble. There is a very relaxed atmosphere and the first thing we noticed was the spotless cleanliness of the rooms which is so important. We would not hesitate to return! Thank you!

10/10,

What blissful idyll. Eric and Stephen were the most attentive, friendly, accommodating, informative and obliging of hosts.
Our Jardin suite was perfect - comfortable, tastefully decorated and very spacious. The breakfasts were carefully prepared, delicious and more than adequate. The two evening meals we enjoyed at the Château itself were wonderful. Great location, remote and cut-off, peaceful, yet within easy driving reach of the big lights of Montpellier, the gorgeous little villages of Pézenas, Octon, Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert etc and the beaches of Cap D'Agde. We would recommend a canoe trip on the Hérault through the company Rapido to anyone. We wouldn't have changed a thing. We will definitely return! Go! You will not regret it!

10/10,

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