A 2 bedroom, characterful, peaceful, village house in Entrecasteaux - a truly authentic old Provencal village.
Suzie & David Balfour
- English, French
About Suzie & David Balfour
We have retired from the B&B we ran in Cumbria and now spend more time at our home in France. We love our British home, but it does get a bit damp and cold in winter! We spend most of the summer in Cumbria bowling (lawn bowls) – David is an experienced bowler and has bowled for most of his life and won many competitions, and Suzie has now caught the bug. When in France we play boules! Suzie has also recently taken up painting (mostly in oils), and some of her work is displayed in our house in Entrecasteaux. She has also taken up lace-making and clay sculpture. When in the UK we spend much of our time visiting our children and grandchildren and David has been creating a small but beautiful garden at our British home.
Suzie & David Balfour purchased this House in 2013
Why Suzie & David Balfour chose Entrecasteaux
We came to Provence for 4 winters running and fell in love with the area. It’s so beautiful, with the rolling landscape, spectacular views, rock formations and rivers. The climate is mainly dry, warm and sunny on winter days and dry and hotter in the summer (we do sometimes come in the summer too). And the people here are very friendly. We are proud to be the owners of an interesting old village house in the amazing village of Entrecasteaux. We do not come often in the summer ourselves, which gives others (maybe you!) a chance to enjoy the beauty and interest of this exceptional village, by staying in our lovely second home. Entrecasteaux is about 1 hr 20 mins from both Marseilles and Nice airports.
What makes this House unique
The house has lots of features, being an old building. If you appreciate character in a house, but also need modern comforts, and tranquillity, then this is the house for you. It has been lovingly modernised, by creating open airy spaces on each floor, but retaining original beams and renovating tiled floors. The street is a quiet, cobbled area, sheltered from the main road. It is a short walk (3 mins) to get fresh bread and groceries every morning. From the terraces you can look across to the wooded hillside beyond, while listening to the music of the river running below. There are plenty of walks locally. It is easy to make day trips – for instance 1 hr to the coast, 50 mins to the Sainte Croix Lake and the start of the Verdon Gorge, 65 mins to Aix-en-Provence, and 1¾ hrs to the the Matisse Chapel at Vence.
The house isn't suitable for large gatherings.
Dogs are welcome but not in bedrooms.
It isn’t suitable for children on uncertain legs.
Minimum age of primary renter:21
Max guests:6 (sleeps up to 6 adults)
Ensure all your garbage/recycling is disposed of before you leave. There is no house collection. There are garbage/recycling points around the village
100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date. 50% refund for cancellations more than 30 days before check-in date.
The house is full of character and has a lovely atmosphere.
The village is ancient and very friendly. We had a lovely evening meal in La Fourchette on their terrace with the sound of the river and swallows flying overhead. The house is very well equipped and we were very comfortable.
We had a peaceful and lovely stay in this house which met all our needs. It has everything! Once tucked up in bed we could hear the distant river and occasional church bells. It's a peaceful house and at dusk you might be lucky to see some bats. The village is wonderful for walks, a nice friendly bar and baker which we visited every day for pastries! There are supermarkets, markets, restaurants and bars in nearby villages. We shall be going back for more.
French village house
This house was exactly as described on the Owners Direct website - except that it surpassed the description! It is a beautifully restored, light, spacious and characterful village house. It was immaculately clean on our arrival and had everything we could possibly need. The sunny terrace overlooking the gorge and small river at the back was ideal for al fresco meals - and our son enjoyed using his own private terrace at the top of the house. The only reservation (which did not apply to us) was that, being on four floors, the house requires a lot of going up and down stairs, so would not be suitable for infirm or disabled visitors.
Like the previous visitors, we enjoyed being able to nip out to the boulangerie (a minute's walk away) for bread, croissants and other treats. The house is right near the centre of this picturesque village, but benefits from being in a (narrow) pedestrian street so is not spoiled by the noise of passing traffic. Although we spotted a fair number of English visitors, the village feels very much like a living French community, with friendly locals happy to chat. (We also made the acquaintance of the charming trio of elderly ladies who always sat in the same spot on the corner!)
I was a bit concerned that our teenage son would find the place too quiet or dull, but he quickly and happily settled into the calmer pace of life here. The highlight for us was definitely the Lac Ste Croix, which made for idyllic swimming, but we also enjoyed exploring the spectacular Gorge du Verdon. We did make a couple of trips to the sea, but it seemed crowded and overdeveloped in contrast to the peaceful interior.
I would love to come back!
Thank you for your exceptional review! Suzie and I are glad you had a quite restful holiday.
I appreciate what you say about the coast as we have noticed the same. "Far from the maddening crowd" seems to sum up the village, although it does have a bit of life about it.
We appreciate that others see what we did when we bought the house! We will do small adjustments and improvements, without changing the character of the house.
We agree that the style of the house is not quite suitable for the infirm, however both Suzie and I will not see sixty again and we seem to go back fitter than when we came.
We would be glad to see you return!!
Idyllic French village & house
Entrecasteaux was absolutely perfect for us. We loved that there weren't so many English there, and that there was a real sense of the local community. Locals were friendly, responding to a bonjour with a bonjour and smiles!! The chateau was dramatic, the maze of winding streets charming.
Our kids enjoyed going out to buy croissants and pains au chocolat from the little bakery every morning. The weekend of celebrations was fun - and the location of the house was the right side of the village if you wanted a quiet stay. The cafes and restaurants overlooking the castle were great, and we enjoyed watching the petanque experts at work!
We took trips out to Lac Ste Croix (twice - it was blissful), the Med (Le Canadel was our favourite), the Massif des Maures and Collobrieres, to Salernes, went swimming in the delicious cold water of the river in the village.
The house is simply and charmingly decorated and we loved the terraces, the layout over 4 floors and the huge bedrooms. Wonderful. It was so well equipped too - it had everything we could possibly need. And thank you for the delicious bottle of rose in the fridge - a lovely welcome.
I never normally like to go back anywhere, as there is always so much more to discover elsewhere. However, I can definitely imagine going back to Entrecasteaux - but for longer!
Thank you for your exceptional review! Now you see why we love the house and especially the village. A big thanks should go to the previous owners and we will try to improve the house over the years. We always get a smile and a wave from the three old ladies who sit on the corner and watch the traffic.
I hope other people will realise that there Is much more in France than a villa with a pool.
Again thanks for our first review and you will be welcome back any time.
Traumhafte Tage in traumhafter Kulisse in einem traumhaften Haus
Wir waren mit unseren drei Jungs acht Tage in Entrecasteaux. Das Haus in einer kleinen, engen Gasse ist sehr typisch und sehr liebevoll und mit dem Blick aufs Detail eingerichtet, es ist alles vorhanden, was man sich vorstellen kann, egal, ob in Küche oder Bad oder Wohnzimmer. Die Betten sind sehr bequem. Direkt hinter dem Haus fließt ein kleiner Bach, der zum Abkühlen einlädt. Entrecasteaux ist ein kleines herrliches Dorf aus dem Mittelalter, ein Bäcker, ein Kiosk, Tante Emma und ein paar Bistros sorgen für alles, was man im Alltag braucht, alles weitere ist ohne Probleme in 10min mit dem Auto erreichbar. Die Umgebung lädt zu vielen Aktivitäten ein, die Provence ist ein wunderschönes Fleckchen Erde, in die wir uns verguckt haben, für jeden von uns gab es was zu erleben. Der Kontakt im Vorfeld war sehr nett und persönlich, die Informationen über das Haus sehr ausführlich, so dass man wirklich keine Überraschung erlebt. Wir würden sofort wiederkommen...
1 hour’s drive to the Mediterranean
1 hr 20 mins drive from either Marseilles or Nice airport. A (hire) car is essential, so that you can explore the area, visit local markets and other events, and take day trips to the coast or the Verdon Gorge.
8km to Salernes (market on Sundays), 9 km to Carcès (market on Saturdays), 10km to Cotignac (market on Tuesdays), 14km to Lorgues (main market on Tuesdays, little market some Saturdays), 30km to Draguignan, 86km to Cannes, 35km to the Lac de Sainte Croix.
There is no ATM in the village but there are ATMs at Salerne, Cotignac and Carces.
Entrecasteaux is a beautiful old Provencal village, situated on the River Bresque. The whole of the old village is classified as an historic monument, and the houses and other buildings are very picturesque. The chateau stands on the site of an 11th century fort and was built in the 16th century, then modified in the 17th and 18th centuries.
During the summer there are lots of events taking place in Entrecasteaux itself, but there are also plenty of others in Cotignac, Carces, Salernes and Lorgues.
Famously, there is also a cricket club, which is very active and welcomes visiting teams to play against.
There are several good restaurants and bars in the village, and also a bakery, a grocery and a news agent.
This part of the country is famous for its beautiful ceramics, and there is the Terra Rossa museum at Salernes, and many artisan tile shops in the villages. The forests used to be felled to fire the clay, but electric ovens are now used.
The forests are now wonderful to walk in, and smell gorgeous as they contain wild herbs as well as wild boar (very shy and only aggressive if disturbed with young).