Chateau, 16 Bedrooms, 12 bathrooms, heated swimming pool, plunge pool & hot tub
Melanie or Colin Hollidge
- English, French
About Melanie or Colin Hollidge
Colin and myself have been running our house rental for seventeen years. We are both really arty, Colin is a practising artist and you will be able to view his paintings which adorn the walls of La Maison. We were drawn to this area because of the stunning countryside and the vast choice of walks, good local wine and gourmet food. Colin is an artist and many of his paintings are of the local area, as he finds it a constant source of inspiration.
Melanie or Colin Hollidge purchased this Chateau / Country House in 2002
Why Melanie or Colin Hollidge chose Villegailhenc
We fell in love with this property not just because of the wonderful original features such as the original tiles, marble fireplaces, high ceilings and the stunning stone carved staircase spanning three floors, but because of its fantastic location here in the Carbardes wine region of the South of France. It’s in a lovely village and only a 10 minute drive to the City of Carcassonne and 15 minutes from the airport. The views from the second floor of the house are breath-taking and the established garden has some 200 year-old rare variety, coniferous trees, giving natural shady spots for those hot summer days. On a more practical basis the village provides great local produce and amenities (including butcher, baker, pharmacy, doctor, dentist and supermarket) which means that you don't have to get in your car each day to enjoy lovely freshly baked baguettes or croissants. The village provides easy access to the some of the most amazing historical sites in France, such as Le Château de Montségur, a former fortress near Montségur, a commune in the Ariège region - its ruins are the site of last stronghold of the Cathars. Then there are the grand Black Mountains (Montagne Noir) to the North, the regal Pyrenees to the South, 40 minutes to the beautiful south coast, as well as gorgeous swimming lakes nearby. 2 weeks will not be enough to take it all in! It takes around a 10 minutes drive to get to the City of Carcassonne, large supermarkets, 15 minutes from the airport. It's also en-route to the beautiful Mountain Noir. The locals are so friendly, if you want to taste the French experience, living in a traditional house and living like a local then this is the property for you. If you travel South, North, East or West you will find a different landscape.
What makes this Chateau / Country House unique
The property offers the unique benefit of being next to Carcassonne, but far enough away to enjoy a slower pace of life. The villagers are so friendly, and there are some great walks in and around the village. It offers a real home from home experience with its individually designed rooms all created with comfort in mind. There is also plenty of space for the group to meet up and lots of space to escape when needed. The pool is heated to around 28-30 degrees throughout the year. There is also an area with swings and a ping-pong table. Fantastic indoor entertainment space with Smart TV, Blu Ray Player, Denon home cinema linked to directly to broadband - easy streaming of the web, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Spotify. Dance floor with disco lighting and sound system to use with blue tooth. Full-sized bar with drinks fridge and walk on well cover. There is a regular bus service in and out of Carcassonne and surrounding areas, for only 1€ each way, a great way to discover the local sites, or visit Carcassonne market on Saturdays.
Cancelled bookings will not receive a refund.
Colin and Melanie, I salute you !!!
We chose this beautiful property for my early 60th birthday get together as it could accommodate so many people,
from the age of 70 to 4 it was perfect for all.
every convenience from butcher to baker, wine store to supermarkets were at most a short drive away.
the house and grounds with swimming pool, and barn with 3 BBQ's were perfect for any family get together and plenty of nooks and crannies if anyone decided to drift away from the main event.
Carcassonne was maybe a 20 minute drive away and most definitely worth a visit , I went twice and should have gone much more!!
I didn't mention the bar in the basement , no need for a bar in the village use the basement absolutely fantastic , my 7 year old grandson took the position of bartender and did a sterling job :-) .
Colin and Mel were on hand if required and could not have been more helpful it was an absolute pleasure to meet them
In summary, if you want a private large family or friends get together this is the place
Wil Denham ( about to turn 60 ) and loved La Maison
Perfect Place for a Large Family Holiday
We were a party of 19 from Liverpool aged from 15-65 and we stayed in La Maison in the second week of June 2018 to celebrate a special birthday. The house is wonderful. It is very large and has substantial grounds. All of the bedrooms were very well appointed as was the house itself. The bedrooms on the first floor of the main house are large and luxurious. The bedrooms on the second floor are charming and serve purpose. The annex is lovely and we would recommend taking that too, even if your numbers don't justify it, as it gives you access to a second kitchen and large refrigerator. The fact there were so many separate spaces - the barn, the pool area, the gardens, the cellar bar & TV room - meant that we felt like we had lots of room and lots of different activities on offer. We loved the outdoor kitchen and spend a lot of our time there eating & drinking, playing pool & darts and using the hot tub. Mel & Colin were excellent; Mel in dealing with our booking in advance and Colin looking after us when we were there. Colin & Mel's excellent relationships with the local supermarket, butcher and baker served us very well indeed and we were delighted with how friendly and willing to help the locals were. The village is sleepy and lovely and there is a regular and easy bus service into Carcassonne which we used often. We would highly recommend La Maison for family and large group holidays; it ticks all of the boxes.
Best family birthday party ever
The house is beautiful, comfortable, spacious and has everything you may wish for to entertain all age groups. The double beds had 4 pillows each and good cotton bedding, spotless en-suite bath/shower rooms with towels. The kitchen is fully equipped. Best of all are all the things you can do there with the heated pool, hot tub, table tennis, billiards, darts, BBQ, indoor cinema, sound system,. I had been a bit concerned that our single men would need to drive out to find bars and clubs as the village lacks in hot spots but they did not, they spent their evenings using the facilities on offer and everyone had a great time.
Our hosts Mel and Colin were super helpful throughout the booking process and after. Our family would highly recommend spending time at La Maison.
Beautiful property - perfect for a group get away!
A beautiful house with all the amenities you could ask for with a big group of family! I would happily stay again, whether it be with a big group of friends or another big family event. Mel was always quick to respond on pre arrival correspondence, she was extremely informative and Colin was on hand to deal with our arrival and departure as well as mid week contact. The pool was clean before arriving and also a mid week clean was done to ensure it was a debris free as possible. the house has lots of social areas for any rainy days and being so close to Carcassonne was very easy to drive down into for the day.
Fantastic - La Maison has it all
La Maison – this has been the perfect location and facility for our 27 guests (total part size was 29) to join us in celebrating our wedding. Our group consisted of family and friends ranging in age from 2 years to 65 years and the excellent facilities surpassed everyone’s expectations. Every room and every space is full of individual character and you get the feeling the whole of La Maison has been crafted over years with love, creativity, style and passion. In our opinion, La Maison has it all and we would highly recommend to others.
A holiday for 12
We are a group of male school friends now all in our 70's. Everyone was very pleased to have their own bedroom and bathroom. We were also pleased that there were options for evening dining, inside or out, and all sitting comfortably at the same table. We could sit in shade or sun, inside or out, by the pool or watching a film later at night (in the basement, out of hearing for the sleeping people). Crockery, cutlery, glasses and mugs never ran out. Verbal and written guidance was helpful, accurate and comprehensive. We had three cars, and parking was ample.
We stay in a large property each year in the UK or Europe. This venue gets 5 stars, and is at the top of our list.
This is an ideal house to hold themed holidays; such as a yoga retreat, blessings, weddings, cookery and painting courses, please email us for more information.
The Mediterranean is 40 mins by car, there are also some beautiful swimming lakes close to the house.
It is possible to fly from Stansted, Bournemouth, Ireland, East Midlands or Liverpool to Carcassonne airport, just 10 minutes from the mansion. From Gatwick to Toulouse airport (50 mins by car) or 1 hour by train. From Stansted to Perpignan and Beziers 45 mins by car. To really enjoy your holiday we would suggest hiring a car.
The house is situated in a village which has great local amenities. It's just 15 minutes from Carcassonne, La Cité, 10 mins from Pennautier/Aragon, 50 mins from Toulouse, 1hr 10 mins from Montpellier and 40 mins from Narbonne's beach.
There are so many places and things to see and do, it is best to visit our website for further information.
The house is rated as 4 Epis (4 Star) with Gites De France and is situated in the village of Villegailhenc between the Black Mountains, to the North, where there are pine forests, and mountain villages and Alpine houses, and then to the South are the Pyrenees.
The village has great local amenities, a butcher, baker, supermarket, pharmacy, dentist, and doctor.
The Mediterranean coast is about 40 mins, and there are some great places to visit such as Gruissan/Sete - two lovely fishing port and old towns, and Collioure - about an hour away, an artist village, perched on a hillside, tumbling down to the coast.
Aude is steeped with history and there is La Cité of Carcassonne to visit nearby (about 10 mins by car), Lastours (7 Cathar Castles perched high up on the mountain, with an award-winning restaurant just below), and Medieval villages such as Mirepoix, this has Monstegur just next to it - the last Cathar strong holding, with amazing views. It can also be enjoyable to go up in a sky lift to the top of the Pyrenees in October, as the views can be spectacular, there are also a couple of caves to look at locally, fantastic local restaurants, we have a 2 Michelin Star restaurant 10 mins by car in the Village of Aragon - another village with over 400km of mountain bike trails.
There is Rennes les Bains - a thermal spring, which has a great walk around the village, and you could combine a trip there to Rennes la Chateau - perched high up on a hill - Dan Brown's, Da Vinci Code, was said to have been inspired by the village, a great mystery where they think the priest found some hidden treasure, as he suddenly came into great wealth.
The house is based in between several different wine regions, the house is in the Cabardes region, and then a short drive you have the Minervois region (our favourite), then the Corbieres region lies to the south of Carcassonne.
If you enjoy cycling, it's possible to cycle along the Canal du Midi from the house.