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Historic Riverside Home, Southern Loire Valley

Dr. John Cooke

Member since: 2005
Speaks: english, french
Bedrooms 3
Half Baths1
Property type house
Minimum Stay 7 - 30 nights

Dr. John Cooke

Member since: 2005
Speaks: english, french
Calendar last updated:
March 9, 2015
Book with confidence
Book with confidence
Guaranteed, secure, with no booking fees
Add vacation protection services to your booking
Three services to protect your trip:
Protect your payments in case you need to cancel.
Guarantee the rental meets your expectations
Ensure you're prepared in case of accidental damage.

Historic Riverside Home, Southern Loire Valley

Bedrooms 3
Half Baths1
Property type house
Minimum Stay 7 - 30 nights


Saint-Pierre-de-Maille House Rental Photos and Description

Mediaeval Country House, 3 Bedrooms, 2.5 Baths, (Sleeps 6)

Welcome to La Grange aux Dîmes, St. Pierre-de-Maille.

Our riverside home in France provides a peaceful retreat in which to dream, think, write or simply relax. Overlooking a millpond on the Gartempe River, a tributary of the mighty Loire, we are serenaded by amorous toads & frogs, ducks and moorhens against the steady backdrop of water pouring over the weir.

Solidly built by the Bishops of Poitiers in the early fourteen-hundreds as a tithe barn, the house has massive foundations with walls several feet thick. It retains its medieval ambience with exposed oak beams and an elegant cherry-wood staircase built in the local style.

The house has recently undergone extensive improvements to make it energy-efficient - for the first time in 600 years

Light and airy, it enjoys stunning views across the river. Our garden runs down to the river bank and provides a peaceful and secluded spot to write, read, doze or entertain. We are both writers and find the environment very conducive to our work. We feel that our home would be ideally suited for like-minded people.

Our village, St. Pierre-de-Maillé, has its own general store, which you will find well stocked. We also have a bakery, restaurant, and bar.

Our home is perfect for:

• Families

Outdoor adventurers - biking, canoing, hiking, horseback riding


• Painters

• Photographers


• Anyone seeking peace and relaxation!

What is around us?

• Angles-sur-l'Anglin, less than two miles away, hailed as one of the most beautiful villages in France, is also home to a new museum of prehistory dedicated to the famous relief carvings in the Abri du roc aux sorciers.

• The great chateaux of the Loire valley.

• Wineries

• The Brenne National Park – great for wildlife

• Futuroscope - Theme park devoted to the moving image

• and a lot more!


• Abundant bike & walking trails

• Swimming & duck feeding in the river

• Canoeing (available to borrow)

• Horse & cart ride

• Horse riding

• Wine tasting

• Fishing

• Rock climbing

• Boating

• Tennis

• Bird watching

• Prehistoric remains

• Scenery! - Churches, castles, ruins, caves, green lanes


• 3 bedrooms (2 double, 1 twin)

• 2.5 bathrooms

• Free WiFi

• Washer & outdoor line (no dryer)

• Linens & towels

• Gas stove & Bench-top oven

• Microwave

• Dishwasher

• Games & books

• TV & DVD player

• Pellet stove heater in living room

• Electric wall heaters

• Bikes & Canoes available to borrow free of charge

• Family friendly (high chair & cot available)

• Patio/outdoor area with barbecue

• Vegetable garden (help yourself!)

• Private section of garden with river access

• Picnic tables on the river opposite the house

Other Details

• Minimum stay 7 nights

• Long term renters welcome

• Price varies according to season

• Check in 5pm

• Check out 10am

• Pets considered

• Non-smoking

• Minimum age of renters is 25

More Details
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • Minimum Age Limit for Renters
  • children welcome
  • limited accessibility
  • non smoking only
  • pets considered
Dr. John Cooke (Owner)
Member since: 2005
Speaks: english, french
Calendar last updated:
March 9, 2015

About Dr. John Cooke

The owners are founding directors of the Bali Children's Project, a non-profit providing educational opportunities to disadvantaged village children. Both are writers. Dr. John Cooke taught zoology at Oxford, and was a director of Oxford Scientific Films, producing wildlife documentaries for TV.

Dr. John Cooke purchased this house in 1990

Why Dr. John Cooke chose Saint-Pierre-de-Maille

After visiting with friends for several years we fell in love with this part of France. The location and historic character of the house presented a unique opportunity when it came on the market.

What makes this house unique

The best of French country living while only 80 minutes from Paris by TGV.

Why HomeAway

Bedrooms 3
Half Baths1
Property type house
Minimum Stay 7 - 30 nights
Book with confidence
Book with confidence
Guaranteed, secure, with no booking fees
Add vacation protection services to your booking
Three services to protect your trip:
Protect your payments in case you need to cancel.
Guarantee the rental meets your expectations
Ensure you're prepared in case of accidental damage.


based on 5 traveler reviews

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Historic Riverside Home, Southern Loire Valley
average rating of 4.8 based on 5 reviews

A Charming Place to Unwind by the River

  • 4 of 5

We stayed for a week but could happily have stayed longer in this lovely quaint house by the river. Others have commented on the setting by the river, but it is a truly lovely location. Step outside the door and sit at the table enjoying a coffee with a view across the river or take a few steps down to the riverside to feed the ducks, take a dip (probably more for the kids) or exchange greetings with the occasional passer by - this is part of a village that we found friendly and welcoming and could easily see why you might want to stay here longer.

This is a pretty unusual house; for a start it is very old - forming part of a medieval tithe barn and is absolutely charming. The owner lives here much of the time, and therefore it has a lived in feel which worked for us.

We enjoyed days out nearby cycling, sightseeing and canoe/kayaking - for this there's a place less than a mile away to hire equipment and transport you to / from various start / end points.

  • Submitted: Oct 8, 2014
  • Stayed: Aug 2014
  • Source: HomeAway

family break

  • 5 of 5

Thank you John for sharing your home with us during a delightfully peaceful get away from it all break.

Steeped in history this was a perfect home from home set on the river bank a short walk from the village centre. Don't expect to rush anywhere just sit back relax and enjoy watching the world go by.

  • Submitted: Sep 3, 2014
  • Stayed: Aug 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
San Francisco

A Peaceful Refuge by A Lovely Scenic River

  • 5 of 5

This vacation rental is in a relatively less travelled area in France called the Vienne or the Poitou. Visitors will find it just as interesting as the Dordogne region. This region also has its beautiful villages, chateaus and rivers.

This comfortable home in St Pierre de Maille is located on the Gartempe River. We let time go by as we watched the river rolling along and enjoyed bird watching while sitting in the glider along the river bank. I enjoyed looking at the views across the river and the reflections cast on the water of the old stone bridge and chateau.

The house has charm and was built in the early 15th century by the Bishops of Poitier. The garden is at the river's edge and provided a secluded space for us to write, read, create art and meditate. It has a well equipped kitchen, comfortable beds and each room has natural light. The owners have wonderful books for you to enjoy. They have bikes available ant this allowed us to see the surrounding countryside and nearby villages. During the spring, summer and early fall, you will find kayaking and boat available for rental. There are two kayaks available for your use.

St Pierre is a small village with bakery, grocery and a pleasant restaurant located in the middle of the village. There are hiking trails and my favorite one takes you to the beautiful village of Angles-sur-l”Anglin which has been named one of the most beautiful villages in France. It's a perfect place to visit a few art galleries s and enjoy a meal at a local restaurant. Nearby is the town of La Roche-Posey where you can destress in the thermal waters and enjoy a spa treatment. If you'd like a city experience, Poitier, the capital of Poitou, will provide you with historical sites and museums. If cinematic photography is your interest, visit Futuroscope.

Within a couple hour drive, you can visit the Dordogne or the chateaus of the Loire Valley.

  • Submitted: Oct 16, 2013
  • Stayed: May 2013
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Sautee Nacoochee GA USA

Just What We Were Looking For

  • 5 of 5

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.

  • Submitted: Oct 30, 2012
  • Stayed: Sep 2012
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway

When reality exceeds expectations

  • 5 of 5

"We were looking for somewhere pleasant to relax with children nearby some river. I cannot imagine anywhere more pleasant that this rental property in this lovely medieval village which to do so. It is impossible to convey adequately the beautiful outlook of the property, perched in the beautiful Vienne Valley and with views over the Gartemp River and surrounding countryside. It is not often that reality exceeds expectations but this really was the case with this property. It is no exaggeration to say that the house made its own significant contribution to the overall success of our trip. John is an extremely nice person, who will help instantanately, before, during and even after your stay if possible. He was really very kind, gave us free access to cut every delicious vegetables in his garden we wanted, lend us a canoe to boat on the river, which is stupendous by its beauty. He gave a lot of himself, explaining many interesting things about the nature to our children, telling about his life, which made us feel like friends for him. Some of their achievments with his wife are admirable, like the creation of an association for deprived children in Indonesia : "the Bali Children’s Project". John relates : “The epiphany came when we met, through Witama, two little girls living with their widowed father in abject poverty deep in the forest. As a landless laborer working in other people’s fields, their father was often obliged to leave them alone. When we learned that they walked for over two hours barefoot in the dark, and without breakfast, to reach school each day, we were determined to find away to help them. We fell in love with them immediately, overwhelmed with the poverty of their lives, yet marveling at their resilience and determination not only to survive but to get an education".

We are very grateful to John and his wife for the loan of their house, their perfect sense of hospitality, and would have no hesitation in recommending this property to other holiday-makers, with or without children."

  • Submitted: Aug 30, 2014
  • Stayed: Jul 2014
  • Source: Abritel, from HomeAway


Nearest Airport
40 Miles
Nearest Barpub
250 Metres
Cheval Blanc
Nearest Golf
6 Miles
La Roche Posay
Nearest Train
20 Miles
Nearest Restaurant
200 Metres
Car: recommended

The area, set in gently rolling hills and river valleys, is rich in historic and prehistoric sites. Angles sur l'Anglin (3 miles) is one of the ten most beautiful villages in France, with dramatic cliff-top castle ruins and prehistory museum. Many visitors enjoy the Gregorian chant at the 12th Century Benedictine Abbey at Fontgombeault


Rates & Availability

From £198 Per week

Saint-Pierre-de-Maille House Rental Rates

Rental Basis:
per property
Rental rates quoted in:
Convert Currency
Rate Period Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event
High Season
Jun 6 2015 - Sep 26 2015
Changeover Day: Saturday
7 night minimum stay
My Standard Rate
30 night minimum stay

Additional information about rental rates

Cleaning £75.00
Refundable damage deposit £200.00
Notes No refunds unless a replacement booking becomes available.

Utilities & heating payable in standard season

Cancellation Policy

Policy available by contacting owner when booking.
Enter dates to see total


Saint-Pierre-de-Maille House Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • house
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 2000 sq. ft.
Location Type:
  • Water View
  • Waterfront
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Air Conditioning ...
  • Broadband Access ...
  • Clothes Dryer ...
  • Computer Available ...
  • Fireplace ...
  • Fitness Room / Equipment ...
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet ...
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking ...
  • Parking Off Street ...
  • Telephone ...
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Wireless Internet
  • Wood Stove ...
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Cooking Utensils ...
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Dishwasher
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove
  • Toaster
  • Child's Highchair
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 6 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • 1 Half Bath
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , combination tub/shower , Upstairs
    Bathroom 2 - toilet , combination tub/shower , ground floor
    Bathroom 3 - toilet , ground floor toilet
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 8
  • Bedroom 3 - 1 double
    Bedroom 2 - 2 twin/ single
    Bedroom 1 - 1 double
  • Double Bed (1) upstairs master bedroom, Double Bed (1) in downstairs bedroom - a bit small, Twin or Single Beds in upstairs room , Baby Cribs (1) available. Master bedroom and bathroom accessed through other upstairs bedroom,
  • Books ...
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Games ...
  • Music Library ...
  • Ping Pong Table
  • Stereo
  • Television ...
  • Toys ...
  • VCR
  • Video Library
  • Bicycles ...
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Golf ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Lawn / Garden ...
  • Outdoor Grill ...
  • Tennis ...
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • Minimum Age Limit for Renters ...
  • children welcome ...
  • limited accessibility ...
  • non smoking only ...
  • pets considered ...
Pool / Spa:
  • Communal Pool ...
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • festivals
  • health/beauty spa
  • museums
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • theme parks
  • winery tours
  • zoo
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • bird watching
  • boating
  • gambling casinos
  • horseback riding
  • photography
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • wildlife viewing
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • massage therapist
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • kayaking
  • mountain biking
  • rock climbing
  • spelunking
  • swimming
  • tennis
Secluded riverside garden provides a great place for writers and artists. Help yourself to fresh vegetables and eggs (when the chickens are laying). St.Pierre is home to an excellent restaurant (L'Etoile) and there are also several others nearby catering to all tastes. The area is great for bicycling and hiking, canoeing and fishing and also provides limitless cultural attractions & activities

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