Maison des Loges

Honfleur, Normandy, France Book from

A simple guesthouse with a superb location in olde worlde Honfleur, probably the prettiest harbour town in northern France
Historic Honfleur is best known for its timber-framed houses and medieval charm, its gastronomy and galleries. Centrally located, the Maison des Loges (ex 'Hotel des Loges') is found in one of the cute cobbled streets that characterise this charming town, just a bowshot from the beautiful wooden Saint-Catherine’s Church.

This is a simple guesthouse - there's no reception, just a breakfast room and small sitting area - offering excellent value and an even better location. It's composed of three 300-year-old fishermen’s cottages and an additional modern wing, which house quirky rooms plus a self-catering cottage with small courtyard (ideal for families) to the rear. Interiors are simple, with a touch of style: warm straw-coloured beige walls, fabrics in ochre or storm-grey, a funky flower motif on the door, an oversized pair of glasses hanging above the bed. Some original features remain - stair banisters, the odd roof beam - and a few rooms feel a little dated; but all are comfy. Stroll the streets, buy some art, marvel at the architecture, visit the D-Day beaches, stuff yourself silly for lunch and dinner.

Highs

  • Superb location, a short stroll from the Eglise Ste Catherine, several gastronomic restaurants and Honfleur’s picturesque internal harbour
  • Well-priced accommodation to suit all
  • Staff are unpretentious and flexible; they'll look after luggage if you arrive early or leave late
  • If the Maison des Loges is full, they can offer you rooms at sister hotels Dauphin or Maison Sainte Catherine
  • Easy to get to from the UK - Le Havre port is 20 minutes away across the Seine estuary

Lows

  • Rooms are functional and comfortable, but don't expect antiques, vintage pieces or fabulous fabrics
  • Street-facing rooms are on the small side, and may, despite double glazing, be noisy in summer (the street doesn't get masses of traffic though)
  • Parking nearby can be problematic, although there’s a carpark 400m along the street
  • You check in at neighbouring Hotel du Dauphin; and in winter you'll have to go there for breakfast too
  • No elevator - it can feel a long way up to the top floor

Best time to go

Spring or autumn if you want to avoid the summer crowds, but it’s lovely here any time of year. Note that off season some shops and services will only be available at weekends.

Our top tips

Bring a good guide book and some smart gear for those gastronomic eateries. You'll need sun and swimming stuff if you’re planning to venture to Trouville and Deauville. And make sure to leave room in your luggage for the gourmet delicacies you'll be bringing home!

Great for...

Family
  • = Recommended
  • = Best in region
  • = World favourite
  • Boutique Guesthouse
  • 14 + 1 cottage
  • Breakfast only (walk to restaurants)
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Daily Maid Service
  • Towels & Bedlinen
  • Concierge Service
Room:

Rooms

Rooms at Maison des Loges are in 3 connecting houses, each with 3 floors, including a modern 'vertical' wing. Walls are straw-coloured, lamps and bathroom tiles flame orange, bedcovers prune and beige; it might sound odd but it works. Rooms have all you'll need: phone, flatscreen multi-channel TV and free WiFi. We liked the cobblestone-patterned carpets, a nod to Honfleur's medieval streets outside.

Most rooms can be double or twin-bedded. In the modern wing there are 2 Triple Rooms, one with 3 single beds, one with a double and a single (no. 32), where we stayed. Below the triples, ground-floor Double Room no. 31, is set up for disabled access, but it doesn't get much natural light. Our favourite rooms were nos. 25 (double) and 26 (twin) on the third floor: quiet and a bit larger, with gorgeous views over medieval rooftops. A romantic option no. 17, an attic room at the front, which has roof beams and great views down the street. If you’re a light sleeper, ground-floor Double Rooms 11 and 12 are the ones to avoid.

A fourth house, at the back, holds a charming 3-storey self-catering cottage for 4-5, with its own cute walled courtyard. La Maison de Louise retains its original features and is decorated with a mix of vintage pieces, although the new kitchen is smartly modern. The living room on the ground floor has a fireplace and armchairs, plus dining for 4. There’s a generous double bed on the first floor, while the floor above has 3 singles, making it ideal for a family. You also get views across the rooftops to the rear. The bathroom is accessed through the master bedroom, so its not suitable for two couples.

Features include:

  • Central heating
  • Cots Available
  • Extra beds
  • Hairdryer
  • Internet access
  • Irons/ironing boards (on request)
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Phone
  • Satellite tv
  • Toiletries
  • Transformer on request
  • WiFi

Eating

The only meal available at Maison des Loges is breakfast, served in a compact terracotta-tiled room behind the entrance lobby. During the quieter winter months, it moves along the road to sister Hotel du Dauphin, so that the atmosphere remains sociable. The continental buffet (excluded from room rates) includes regional ham and fromage, cereals, confiture du lait, maybe yoghurt, fruit salad or hard-boiled eggs - but no hot dishes.

Don't forget to claim your free afternoon tea as your treat for booking through i-escape, served at Hotel du Dauphin down the road.

If staying in La Maison de Louise, you can choose the hotel breakfast or self-cater. Its compact but stylish red kitchen is off the ground floor living / dining room, with a small stove, microwave, coffee percolator, dishwasher, basic cooking ingredients, and cheery red-white crockery. We enjoyed stocking up at the food markets beside the church (Saturdays and Wednesdays), and the nearby boulangeries and delis.

You would need at least a week to eat your way through all the town’s superb restaurants - apparently there’s one restaurant for every 80 inhabitants! Le Breard (closed Weds), is just a few steps away and combines the freshest Norman ingredients with international tastes to great effect. We also had a lovely classic French bistro lunch at Côté Resto beside the church, loving the grilled fish in five varieties followed by chocolate mousse combo from the set menu. For those a small budget, we liked the traditional fare found at La Bouillon Normand, across the Vieux Bassin, which also has a child's menu.

Features include:

  • Breakfast
  • Children meals
  • Minibar/fridge
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Room service
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

  • Admire Honfleur’s 17th-century ‘skyscrapers’ around its enchanting inner harbour, the Vieux Bassin, and watch the yachts glide in; if you arrive early in the morning you can see the fishermen’s wives selling fish - by historic right only they are allowed to sell it

  • Pop into the 15th-century Eglise Ste Catherine, the finest timber-frame church in France, designed and constructed by boat-builders without saws

  • Assault your senses at the funky Maisons Satie museum celebrating the maverick musician, artist and writer who was born here; then treat yourself to a tour of the Musée Eugène Boudin, which was founded by the eponymous artist and exhibits some of his best impressionist paintings along with those of his friends including Monet

  • There’s a Saturday market in the Place Ste Catherine, an organic market on Wednesdays, and plenty of art galleries to browse in too

  • Stroll through le Jardin des personnalités, featuring busts of the great and good identified with Honfleur; head towards the sea front and beach for wide views across the Seine and beach combing

  • Climb (or drive as we did) up to the 17th-century richly-adorned Chapelle Notre Dame de Grace which has models of ships offered by sailors, a carillon of bells and stunning views over the estuary

  • Within half an hour's drive, you'll find apple farms for cider- and calvados- tasting, the Monday market (and cheese stalls) of Pont L’Eveque, and the huge sandy beaches of Trouville and Deauville where you can also go sailing, swimming and windsurfing

  • Golf and tennis are available nearby; riding can also be arranged

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Golf
  • Historical sites
  • Museums / galleries
  • Shopping / markets
  • Swimming
  • Tennis

Kids

Children of all ages are very welcome. Cots are free if you book through i-escape, and extra beds are also available, under 10's get a free breakfast.

We think a trip to Honfleur would make a great short break with a baby or small child, particularly if you live close to one of the ferry ports running to Dieppe or Le Havre. There's enough to do nearby - from exploring pretty Honfleur to enjoying the seaside resort of Trouville and eating lots of lovely food (book a babysitter for the evening for the full effect).

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

Bag a Triple Room if you're coming with one child or a child and a baby; most of the Double Rooms aren't that spacious, particularly with a cot in them. If your family is bigger or you feel you'd need more space, the cottage is a great idea, sleeping a maximum of 2 adults and 3 children in 2 separate bedrooms, plus kitchen, little courtyard garden and living/dining room.

Babysitting:

Babysitting available by arrangement. See rates.

Baby listening:

Baby listening/monitors available on request

Baby equipment:

  • Cots
  • High chair
  • Bottle warming

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Children's meals:

Breakfast is the only meal served, but you won't have to go far to find a café or restaurant. Under 10s breakfast for free. The self-catering cottage has its own kitchen and there are markets in Honfleur on Saturdays and Wednesdays. Most of the restaurants will have children's menus.

Kids Activities on site:

  • Flatscreen TV
  • WiFi

Kids Activities nearby:

  • There are swings and a playpark in the public gardens on the banks of the Seine
  • The wide flat sandy beach is just beyond
  • Are also safe sandy beaches at Arromanches, Deauville and Trouville
  • Naturospace, an indoor butterfly centre, is close by and good if it's raining

Families Should Know:

The stairs are very steep throughout the hotel and there's no lift. The hotel opens up right onto the road but there's not much traffic.

Distances:

  • Airport: 20 minutes (Le Havre), 1 hour 30 minutes (Caen)
  • Hospital: 20 minutes
  • Ferry ports: 30 minutes (Le Havre), 1 hour 30 minutes (Dieppe)

Our guests' ratings...

7/
Rooms
7/
Food
8/
Service
6/
Value
7/
Overall

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