Le Jardin du Couvent, located in the village of Aups in the Haut Var region, is our family vacation home. The Couvent was originally built between 1629-1639, when a 12th century Cistercian abbey was converted into an Ursuline convent. Our house, the adjoining chapel and the garden were all part of the cloisters of the convent and were originally used as places of prayer and meditation. Our family acquired Le Jardin du Couvent in 1972. The exterior has remained unchanged while the interior has been carefully restored and maintained. It is a comfortable and attractive home with modern conveniences. The house has central heating and four fireplaces. There are six bedrooms with beds for up to thirteen people, four and a half bathrooms, and several sitting rooms and dining areas, including a very large great room. The general decor of the house retains the flavor of its origins. The house is furnished with French country antiques and Oriental rugs.
The arched cloister walkway and the spacious walled garden provide complete privacy for outdoor dining and relaxing. The house contains in excess of six thousand square feet, with ample parking available at the rear of the house. Enjoy village life in 12th century Aups: it's just a three minute walk to your morning croissant, cafes, restaurants, the small shops and the town square where the Provencal sport of boules is played. The village maintains a swimming pool and tennis courts in the summer months for which a small fee is charged. There is an open air market in the square every Wednesday and Saturday. Village fairs are held in May and August and Provencal celebrations at Christmas and Easter. Or take any number of day trips to picturesque villages in the region, the Gorges du Verdon and the Lac de Ste. Croix or to Avignon, Nice, Aix-en-Provence, St. Paul de Vence, and the beaches of St. Tropez. Caretaker lives in the village and speaks English.
Amenities:Fireplaces, Phone, TV, WiFi, Full Kitchen with double oven-5 burner stove; Microwave, Dishwasher, Large Refrigerator, Washer & Dryer, Weber Charcoal Grill, Ping-Pong Table. Linens provided. Maid service included.
Activities: Swimming, Boating, Kayaking, Parsailing, Rafting, Hiking, Tennis, Rock Climbing, Biking, Boules (a Provencal form of bocci ball),Farmer's Markets, Antique Markets, Museums (Art Museum and Museum of the French Resistance in village.)
Area: Lac de Ste. Croix and Les Gorges du Verdon, where you can swim, kayak, para-sail, hike, rock climb and raft are a 20-minute drive away. The house is centrally located for day trips to St. Tropez, Ste. Maxime, Nice, Cannes, St. Paul-de-Vence and the other cities and villages of the Cote d'Azure as well as Aix-en-Provence, Avignon, Les Baux, Gordes, Rousillon, Marseilles and the other cities and towns of Provence.
Other Activities: Fine Dining