Photos and Description of this 4 bedroom holiday villa in Bandol - Villa l'Ecrignole
4 Bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, sleeps 8 adults. 12x5m heated salt water pool
L'Ecrignole is a beautiful villa commanding a dramatic position near the crest of a hill with magnificent views across low foothills and vineyards to the sea. Two km from Le Beausset and ten km from the atmospheric beach resort of Bandol, the house is set on a hillside in almost 10000m2 (2.5 acres) of land. Peace and privacy are at a maximum, the villa is surrounded on three sides by woods. There are no near neighbours nor houses overlooking the grounds with the consequence that photographing the villa's setting is close to impossible.
To the south the woods fall away to reveal a picturesque landscape of dream-like character stretching to the Mediterranean Sea. This vista is the central theme of a large sun terrace and 12x5 metre swimming pool. The villa has been completely renovated, beautiful fully equipped kitchen and heated, salt water swimming pool. It is also provided with a wide range of facilities, including TV, HiFi, Sky Satellite and (free) Wireless Broadband Internet access.
The swimming pool uses a salt water chlorination system with an ultrasonic system for killing algea, etc. The salt water system means that the pool has a much lower level of chlorine and the water feels much softer than a normal pool. The concentration of salt in the water is so low that it can barely be tasted and leaves no residue on your skin. The ultrasound system further keeps the pool free of algea without the use of chemicals. The result is a pool that remains extremely clean, is more environmentally friendly than a normal pool and is extremely pleasant to use.
The ground floor consists of a large lounge and dining area with sofas, TV, HIFI, computer, dining table & chairs, adjoined by a large modern and throughly equipped kitchen. Kitchen equipment includes a steam oven, fan oven, refrigerator, large gas hob, dish washer, microwave and various other coffee, tea and general apparatus. On the otherwise of the entrance hall is a bedroom with ensuite shower / bath combination. A separate toilet opens off the the hall, as does a utility room containing a washing machine, dryer and large fridge / freezer along with ironing and cleaning materials.
New in 2013: View to the south has been greatly expanded, resulting in an even more breathtaking view and great sense of space and light on the terrace. See new photos.
New in 2013: 150 metre concrete driveway, improving access to the house. See new photos.
New in 2013: Addition of Apple 'Airplay' capability to the Hifi, allowing guests to play music from their iDevices via the Hifi. Addition of Apple TV to the entertainment centre. Addition of extra 5Ghz Wifi network, increasing network range.
- children welcome
- non smoking only
- pets not allowed
- suitable for elderly or infirm
About Robert Howe
I am CEO of a software company, a high-tech and challenging business that is slowly changing the way that complex software is developed. Married to Marion, we have two daughters, ages 17 & 10. I'm pretty active and enjoying cycling & sailing when we stay in France.
Robert Howe purchased this villa in 2001
Why Robert Howe chose Bandol
One of our children was diagnosed with Leukaemia in 2001. Once she had completed her initial chemotherapy we faced another 2 years of constant treatment followed by years of recovery. We bought L'Ecrignole in 2001 as a safe base for holidays, with medical support provided by a local clinic.
L'Ecrignole has been a fantastic retreat for us. A place for the kids to play and swim and for us to rest in incredibly beautiful and peaceful surroundings, with plenty of lovely local wine on tap. The fact that the house is not overlooked meant (and continues to mean) complete privacy, something which we value highly.
As the kids have grown older, so our horizons have expanded to include days on the beach, walks along the cliffs, sailing in Bandol and Saint Cyr. L'Ecrignole is also an ideal base for longer range exploration and so we have been on day trips to places such the Roman amphitheatre in Nimes and a nearby Falconry. Marineland in Cannes remains a popular destination, out of high season!
In years gone by we have driven into the southern Alps, following the Lavender route for example. But in the process we discovered that one of the kids gets car sick from the mountain passes, which rather took the enjoyment out of these trips.
One thing still left on our to do list is some skiing trips. In principle a 2 hour drive will bring you to a good ski region. So a day or two skiing is entirely feasible.
What makes this villa unique
They say that one should chose a property based on three things: Location, Location and Location. The location of L'Ecrignole is in many ways perfect. We first fell in love with the view and then, later, with the peace and privacy. After more than 10 years owning L'Ecrignole we have never become tired of the view. Summer or Winter, you can find us sat outside taking in the vista and the peace.
Our favourite time of the year is late spring or late summer, when the temperature is a little cooler and the region a little quieter. Warm enough to spend all day outside, cool enough to be active during the day, quiet enough to avoid the coastal tourists of July & August. But you can also find us snoozing in the afternoon sun/shade in August or sitting outside in a ski-jacket, wrapped in a blanket in Mid-Winter.