The house looks out to the red roofs of Upper Fuilla and to Canigou and the mountains all around. The accommodation is comfortable at any time of year, with an open fire and electric heating in the colder months. In the summer the many windows and the tiled floors provide welcome cool and shade. The main living room is furnished with 2 very comfortable, large 3 seater white sofas, and two arm chairs. The dining area has a handsome 8 seater table with dining chairs to match. There is a large custom-made book-case filled with books, board games and CDs, all of which visitors are welcome to use. Leading out of the living room there is a sun room which has a table and chairs to sit 8, together with a couple of sun loungers. (All of these can easily be moved out into the garden during the summer months.) There are buckets full of Lego and other children's toys.
2 of the 4 bedrooms in the house have views of Canigou, and the others look out to a range of hills. There is one bedroom in the out-house in the garden which also has wonderful views of Canigou. There is ample storage, and each of the bedrooms has overhead reading lights except the out-house bedroom which has a lantern.
There is also a large circular wine cellar, accessible from the garage, and numerous swimming aids and toys in the garage. The garden is one of the delights of Les Lucioles. Firstly it is about an acre in size and is completely secure, (when the gates to the house drive have been closed). The swimming pool is oval and surrounded by a grassed area inside a security rail fence. This fence is partially covered with climbing roses. In the orchard there is a swing and some ladders creating a couple of tree houses. If you are in residence at the appropriate time the orchard is pretty fruitful in plums and apples and a large cherry. You are welcome to eat the fruit. There are also specimen trees planted in other parts of the garden which provide shade even on the hottest of days. There is ample room for games of kickabout football, for making dens, and for games of hide and seek.
Les Lucioles is in Fuilla du Haut, (upper Fuilla) which leads to Sahorre with its boulangerie and grocers and butchers shops. Above Sahorre on the road to Py and Mantet there are some wonderful swimming pools in the river. Py is a pretty village on the GR10 with a choice of walks radiating from it The road then climbs sharply via a wonderful switch back road to the Col de Mantet, and thence down to the village of Mantet, the last village in France, (and a renowned staging point for escaping servicemen in the Second World War). From Mantet there is a magnificent but strenuous walk up to the Spanish border. (In Les Lucioles we have left instructions as to many of these walks as well as a list of 10 things that you must do while staying there). Indeed the walking in this part of the Pyrenees, (including many walks from the house) is spectacular and very rewarding.
There are also some ‘must see’ historic sites in the neighbourhood such as St Michel de Cuxha (a beautiful Romanesque church with a cloister and atmospheric crypt), Villefranhe de Conflent, (a World Hertitage Site, walled stone 17th century town) and St Martin de Canigou (only accessible by walking and a site of particular symbolic significance to the Catalan people). The most attractive sea-side resort is Collioure, about an hour and a quarter's drive away, although in high summer this can be crowded. Other outings to the hot springs at St Thomas les Bains, the Gorges de Caranca and the great Crusader castles of Peypetreuse and Queribus are well worth a visit. But on hot sumer days the garden, the pool and the house provide complete relaxation. An evening drink or meal at Vernet les Bains or at Villefranche de Conflent is a pleasant way of rounding off the day. We hope that you will enjoy Les Lucioles as much as we have in the past, and intend to continue to in the years ahead. This is emphatically a family home rather than a commercial operation.
It is a world away from glitz or clubbing or crowded beaches. But for a memorable and relaxing holiday in a beautiful setting it might be hard to beat.