Chez Ellen is nestled in the hillside of the perched village of Ansouis, which is rated one of the loveliest villages in France. In the middle ages, Ansouis held control of the pass between Apt and Aix en Provence. The Chateau d'Ansouis, which sits at the top of the village, was built around 961 and still retains its watchtower, iron entrance gate, and gardens. It is a short walk (5 minutes)from the house through the narrow maze of streets and the chateau is open for tours.
Take a morning stroll to our village boulangerie for a fresh baguette, or chocolate croissant, or to the new grocery for last minute items. Also located within a 5 minute walk are the Musee Extraordinaire, visitor's center, Bar des Sports (sports bar), the Tabac (gift shop & misc.,) our highly rated restaurants, and the Church of St. Martin.
In need of some exercise? Enjoy a hike through the vineyards and around the country homes at the base of the village. Take our bikes out for an afternoon ride. Go for a hike or swim at Etang de la Bonde (great spot for a picnic) or visit the nearby public swimming pool,there are 4 pools to choose from.
Day trips can include: the beach at Cassis (the Cote d' Azur or St. Tropez), Roussillon, the Camarque, Arles, Gordes, Marseille, Cannes, the Pont du Gard.... Take in the fresh air market offered in Ansouis (at the bottom of our street) or a nearby village almost everyday.
After your exciting day, return to Chez Ellen to relax. The first floor is designed for relaxing and entertaining. The fully stocked kitchen opens to the dining room where you will find beautiful provencal table linens. The kitchen cabinet doors were rescued from a ruined chateau as were all the house's interior doors. The living room has a candlelit fireplace along with media equipment, a large selection of DVDs and video tapes (children and adults in english and french,) wireless internet, puzzles, cards, games, and a small toybox. There is also a convertible sofa bed in the livingroom. In the sitting area, you can relax and read a book while sipping an espresso or a glass of wine while taking in the beautiful view of the Luberon through the large picture window.
Provence sunsets can be viewed from the terrace and the second floor balcony. Enjoy a beautiful summer breeze while grilling on the terrace and dining al fresco.
The two master bedrooms (located on the second level) have cozy queen-sized beds made with luxury linens. The larger of the two masters has an adjustable bed. Both bedrooms have writing desks perfect for penning postcards and each room has access to the spacious balcony where you can watch the sunrise. Along the second floor hallway is the library wall filled with an abundant collection of fiction, non-fiction, and France tour books.
We loved it! It was one of those special and magical places. In fact, it set the standard so high that our next place couldn't begin to live up to Ansouis. We loved our week at Chez Ellen and Ansouis, many happy pictures and memories. We were there 1 week and would definitely recommend it. It was our 2nd trip to Provence. Liked the 'charm', small village feel, and its proximity to other neat areas: Les Baux, other Luberon villages, market at Lourmarin.....