Just What We Were Looking For
Submitted: October 30, 2012
Stayed: September 2012
We loved our stay here because it is not a typical "vacation rental” and give it 5 stars for that and the superb setting. The furnishings and decoration reflect the eclectic tastes of the American owners and are comfortably used. Every evening six o'clock found us transporting libations and cheese to the private wooded riverbank complete with upholstered gliding couch and a small table. From there we watched the birds and waterfowl that inhabit the shallow weir upstream of the mill on the Gartempe, a broad view that ends in the picturesque bridge across the river. The weather was perfect during our fall stay. Get instructions for starting the new heater (now in front of the fireplace) if it might turn cold while you are there. We both snore, and one of us has trouble with stairs, so having bedrooms and baths both downstairs and up worked well for us. Upstairs there’s a bedroom with bathroom and a second bedroom, whose access to the bath is through the first. The kitchen is adequately supplied, but reveals that cooking is not a priority for the owners. Nevertheless we did enjoy simple meals at home two nights out of five, thanks to the well-stocked little 8 a Huit in St. Pierre. Free no-password WiFi worked well. Of nearby restaurants, we particularly liked Le Grillon in Angles sur l'Anglin. We were sorry that we didn't notice before our last night that the restaurant in St. Pierre, within an easy walk, is closed on Mondays. It’s nice that such a small town also has its own excellent bakery. Note that the back office shown in the current VRBO photos has been closed off. The owners are converting it to a pied a terre they can occupy when the main space is rented.
If you like to cycle, the environs of St. Pierre de Maille offer a plethora of opportunities, with many “petites routes” along the banks of the nearest rivers, the Gartempe and the Creuse. Obtain IGN Top 100 map #139 in advance. Traffic is minimal, and French drivers are very accommodating. I no longer bike, but my husband went out every day and says it is one of the best areas in our 20 years of exploring French back roads. I drove our rental car to meet him for lunches in La Roche Posay, Chauvigny, Montmorillon, and Le Blanc, where on Sunday we located, by lucky chance, a fine oriental restaurant, Perle d'Asie (13 rue Pierre Collin de Souvigny). Get the Vietnamese crepe/pancake.
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