Our 2 houses are between historic and lovely Aubeterre and the busy market town of Chalais. Set in gently sloping gardens and meadow, with fruit, nut and lime trees for shade, Sac faces south down the valley, looking over sunflowers and meadows towards a small lake, distant woods and fields. This is Cognac, vineyard and Pineau country with specialities of foie gras, melon and chestnut dishes. The site is private and very quiet, bounded by our outbuildings and hedges. The large, fenced pool is not overlooked. Floodlit Petanque piste, Badminton/croquet lawn, games room, table tennis/football, bikes etc. The owners live in UK. We also have a farmhouse (sleeps 12) reference 8062415, and studio flat (sleeps 2/3), which is let only with one or both of the houses as extra accommodation.
- Cottage419 sq. ft.
- Separate WCs1
- Min. Stay3 - 7 nights
Pretty Stone Cottage between Aubeterre & Chalais, Poitou-Charente - Peaceful Location On Hilltop In Vineyard Countryside, Ideal For Couples, 6kms From Lively Village
- Response rate:
- Response time:
- within one hour
- English, French
- Calendar last updated:
- 17 Aug 2018
About John Curtis-Rouse
I am John Curtis-Rouse, the owner of the holiday houses at Sac. I am a retired college vice-principal and live in Cornwall, which is lovely but often grey & frequently wet and cool. Thus, a holiday base in the sunny, colourful Southwest of France seemed attractive. I love travel and France, and the Charente/Dordogne region offers wonderful weather, varied and tranquil scenery, good, affordable food and very friendly people. I also love the heritage of thousands of years of settlement, invasion and architecture. I let the houses to many people from my local area and to many more from my own school, as well as to friends and relatives. My elder daughter was married at Sac in 2009.
John Curtis-Rouse purchased this Cottage in 2003
Why John Curtis-Rouse chose Saint-Romain
My wife and I have 4 children who have all, with many of their friends, helped us with the renovation and development of Sac. We spent 3 years working before first letting the houses (and using them ourselves with our family and friends) in 2005. One of our sons (a Major in the army) became an expert with the sandblaster, scouring centuries of dirt off beams and stone walls. One daughter (teaching at an independent school now) moved, with Joyce, 20 tons of boulders tipped in the wrong place due to John's inaccurate French. Our other son, now a scenic carpenter working at Pinewood, built the floor in the Pressoir. Our younger daughter, also a teacher, took charge of the regular bonfires and planted the herb garden. I get on very well with our French neighbours, and hope you will, too!
What makes this Cottage unique
Our decison to buy south of the Loire (red, Roman-tiled roofs, wine and warmth) took us away from the grey of Brittany (like Cornwall with garlic!) and we have not regretted it. I enjoy the drive down from Roscoff, sensing the rising warmth and aromas of the South. The houses are not furnished with antiques but with sturdy and comfortable items that are child-resistant. The site is great for children with many nooks and corners to explore and play in. The pool is safely fenced. There is lots of sports and play equipment (including a juggling set!). Most of our guests spend the majority of their time on site, and many return again and again. In 2009 our elder daughter got married at Sac - 20 guests sitting down to dinner - and we this year (2016) welcomed our 3rd grandchild to Sac.
Pool / Spa
Local Services & Businesses
Sports & Adventure Activities
100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date. You must contact the owner directly to request cancellation.
Lovely little house all amenities and amazing welcome pack. Peaceful setting and lots for children.
Ideal holiday setting close to everything you need. House has everything a real home from home. We had lovely sunshine and visited around the area. Auberterre beautiful, Riberac market great. Ostrich farm in Celles funny. My grandchildren 11 and 9 were thrilled with all the activities and pool braving the chilly April water. Thank you so much just what we wanted.
Many thanks for writing this review. I am glad your break went well and that the weather was so very good for April (26 degrees!). Also glad the boys liked the roller-coaster and used the pool, despite the temperature in early April! Best wishes, John
Fantastic gite in sublime settings!
You will definately not be disappointed if you spend a holiday break in this beautiful and characteristic gite which is set in breathtaking surroundings. It is a very well maintained and clean one bedroom property with all the facilities and utensils you will require in enjoying your stay in the french countryside. The owner was most helpful and accommodating and the french caretakers, I highly recommend in their welcoming approach. This is a great holiday retreat and you will feel most relaxed the minute you arrive. The complex also has a larger gite for families and friendly groups. And it also has a great swimming pool!
Lovely holiday gite in a great location close to amenities.
We really enjoyed our stay, it was a nice little gite in a lovely location. We didn't arrive until late in the evening so the heating being left on for us and the welcome pack was a particularly nice touch. John, the owner, was very helpful and gave us lots of information about local events.
With the pool and all the games available for guests it would be a perfect holiday place for families.
Thanks for reviewing yoiur stay at my cottage. Glad your trip was a success! Best wishes, John.
We only normally stay in a property twice before finding somewhere new. This was our third stay so shows how impressed we have been. The property is lovely and secluded but has a supermarket open 7 days a week within a 15 minute drive. Everything is there for you, down to the charcoal for the BBQ. Aubeterre is a lovely village and well worth a visit especially on the first Sunday after your drive to the property. John is extremely informative and provides loads of literature before you leave. We will certainly be returning in the future
Another lovely week in Sac
Once again another relaxing and enjoyable stay. We love the tranquillity, but also the space to accommodate our ever expanding extended family and plenty to keep everyone entertained. The house is well equipped but not 'just so' so we don't have to feel overly worried bout the children damaging anything. John and the care takers are always very thoughtful and accommodating.
Many thanks for taking the time to write this review. Glad you had a good time!
Full of character, beautiful surroundings & homely
This is the third time we have stayed at in this lovely homely cottage and we will be coming back. It really is perfect for two. Easy to keep warm up on those chilly nights, good cooking facilities, a washing machine that is great for longer stays with enough room to have guests with its open plan style. Everything works but if you need help the local caretakers will take care of you.
We have also stayed at the big house, which is amazing. Too big for us, it fits I guess three families with a great French kitchen, wonderful communal lounge area with a pool table, darts and TV - all great fun.
Outside games for all, we really enjoyed burning off a few calories. And off course the swimming pool.
John sends you all the recommended tourist information and ensures before, during and after your stay he is accessible to answer questions, help and listen to any feedback.
We know the area well and would recommend the lovely village of Aubeterre with its Sunday market and a range of lovely eateries. This now includes an afternoon cupcake tearoom!
There is lots to do, lovely walks, canoeing and horse riding. The local river resorts where you can swim, enjoy the beach experience in the countryside with climbing frames for the kids and you can hire a small boat. Take a picnic or eat on site. Within easy reach there is one at Aubeterre that includes tennis courts and another at Saint AulayeAulaye.
Nearby larger towns are Reberac where you should check out the wonderful Friday morning market. If you really want a day by the sea, then Bordeaux is in easy reach. There are so many great places to visit but at this point I hope you are getting a feel for this lovely part of France.
We would definitely recommend staying here. It's great value for money and a jewel find in the warm climate of the beautiful south west French countryside.
Many thanks for this warm review; we are delighted that you enjoyed your stay at Sac and that the cottage came up to your expectations. Hope to welcome you again!
Excellent, safe, maintained river ("Dronne") beaches at Aubeterre (7kms) Parcoul and St Aulaye (12kms). Diving raft, beach bistro, toilets, tennis courts, lifeguard in high season. 30 minutes drive to the swimming lake at La Jemaye in the Foret de la Double, Brossac (16 kms) has swimming, cafe and pedalos for hire. The beaches and dunes of the Atlantic Coast (eg St George, Royan) are a 75 minute drive. Canoe hire and expeditions from Aubeterre on River Dronne.
Detailed travel guide and details of how to get 10% discount on Brittany Ferries available. Airports: Bergerac and Bordeaux – about 75 mins driving; La Rochelle - 2 hours; Poitiers 2.5 hours; Limoges 2 hours. Car hire at all airports.
Rail: TGV Paris-Angouleme (Bordeaux line). Car hire available at Angouleme and Bordeaux. Ferry: about 6.5 hours' drive from Roscoff and 5 hours from St Malo. 7.5 hours from Cherbourg. 9 hours from Calais. Use of car essential.
Chalais (good shopping, weekly market, all services) 7kms. Aubeterre (famous, historic village and classified as one of France's 100 most beautiful - lots of bars and restaurants) 7kms. Angouleme (regional capital - cathedral, ramparts, TGV station, chic shops, art galleries and comic museum) 45kms, Riberac (weekly regional food market) 25kms, Bordeaux (major cultural centre, port, art, shops etc) 60 kms, Cognac (brandy distillery tours) 45 kms, Grands crus vineyards (eg St Emilion) 40kms.
Tennis - good communal court at St Romain (4kms) which guests may use - floodlit courts at Aubeterre, near the river beach and canoe base. Walking and cycling - there is very little traffic on the lanes. Sac is within a network of graded cycle routes centred on Aubeterre. There about 8 serviceable bikes at the property, plus small bikes/scooters for children. Le Chemin de Compostelle (the famed pre-medieval pilgrim route to Santiago) passes within 2kms of our houses, and there is an excellent network of waymarked footpaths. Fishing - the River Dronne (5kms) is rich in zander, carp and trout, with large pike. Permits available. Riding - equestrian centres at Aubeterre and Bonnes (each 15 mins drive). Markets - weekly markets in Chalais, Riberac and Barbezieux, and many others of varying size, covering every day of the week, within 25kms. Shopping - Chalais is the main regional shopping centre, with a large supermarket (open Sunday mornings) as well as a full range of traditional shops. Large farmers' market open daily, and several stalls (especially oysters) which open at various times. On Mondays there is a large street market selling food, clothes, furnitire, flowers and plants etc. In July and August look out for well-advertised night markets (partly to avoid the heat of the middle of the day, partly just for fun). Chalais has a chateau with France’s only working drawbridge (and superb restaurant in the dungeon!), 13th century Romanesque church and cloisters. Balconied medieval houses line the narrow streets of Aubeterre (7 kms), famed for its awesome monolithic church, hewn out of caves beneath the cliffs. Traditional French music in the main square in the evenings. Location for The English Wife, (Zoe Wannamaker). Puppet theatre for children. Bergerac (65kms) - classic regional centre on the Dordogne river – wonderful medieval and Romanesque houses and churches - excellent river tours. Many restaurants within 15 mins of Sac, in Aubeterre, Bonnes, Chalais.
Additional pricing information
Booking Notes: We will hold a provisional booking for a week. Then a deposit of 20% secures your holiday, with the balance payable eight weeks before your rental starts. We recommend holiday insurance, which would refund your non-returnable deposit should you be unable to complete the booking. The studio flat (La Quatrieme Porcherie), sleeping 2/3 (double bed and folding single) is only let with cottage or farmhouse. Please enquire about prices for this. Payment by cheque, bank transfer or PayPal. Changeover Day: Changeover day is usually Saturday - arrival from 4pm, departure by 11am, please. We can accommodate later arrival times, given notice. If bookings permit, we can agree to other changeover days.