Chateau d'Olmet

Olmet et Villecun, Languedoc-Roussillon, France Book from Book from £96 per night

A winning 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.

Information provided by Chateau d'Olmet on 07/09/2020.

Policies
No deposits required during 2020 and 2021 until further notice.

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 a couple of nights a week 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 and dinner only available on Friday and Monday evenings
  • The sense of isolation won't appeal to everyone
  • No twin beds, and only Parker has a bath; the other bathrooms are shower only
  • There are some uneven steps around the property

Best time to go

Languedoc-Roussillon 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
Romantic
  • Boutique B&B
  • 5 rooms
  • Breakfast + dinner on request
  • Adults only
  • Closed: 1 Dec 2022 - 14 Feb 2023
  • 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
  • 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 a couple of evenings a week can be arranged with prior notice and take the form of formal 3-course dinners on Monday and Friday nights. Gorgeous mushroom quiches 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). Just ask Eric for his advice on where to eat, especially if you're staying here out of peak season as rural restaurants have erratic opening hours.

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

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-Roussillon 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 4 independent reviews from i-escape guests

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

Stephen and Eric have created a very special hill top oasis.They are great hosts, very welcoming and informative. Our room was beautiful with wonderful views and the most comfortable bed. The enclosed garden area is peaceful, beautifully planted and has a gorgeous swimming pool. We ate at the Chateau one evening and had a delicious home cooked dinner in the illuminated garden. They are great hosts, very welcoming and informative.

10/10,

A beautiful,boutique B&B set in a lovely tranquil location. Eric and Stephen were great hosts, very attentive, friendly and helpful about things to do in the area, all of which made our stay truly enjoyable.I would highly recommend.

10/10,

Olmet is the new name for perfection! Everything was outstanding albeit simple and authentic. Eric and Stephen pay attention to the smallest details. Moreover Olmet is a true hideaway and the quality of silence is superb. A glass of local wine on the terrasse next to the pool with a book (bring your own book...) is a truly civilized experience. We will be back. Thank you for those magic moments.

10/10,

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