Verified Review icon check navigate-up navigate-left navigate-right expand mail svg-lightning svg-24hr svg-house svg-sleeps svg-bedrooms svg-bathrooms svg-stay svg-toilet calendar svg-report-flag pet-dog svg-multiunit Default Owner Icon heart-filled Family icon
Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927
Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927

Romantic Warm Cosy Cottage by King Henry's Castle in nearby Medieval Heaven

Bedrooms 1
Space 1,614 sq. ft.
Property type cottage
Minimum Stay 3 nights


About the property

Just for Two. A lovely home, private road, pretty meadow, views, walk to shops.

Across our meadow from the historic and important Medieval Castle of King Henry II and Queen Eleanor of Acquitaine is our beautifully furnished and fully equipped large romantic cottage, le joli pre (the pretty meadow), with amazing views, exclusively yours during your holiday. On a hill in a private tranquil lane with just a short walk to the shops, cafes, bars and restaurants of historic Domfront. Lovingly restored by a French architect and artisans, wholly respecting its feel and character. Thick insulated walls, cool inside in summer and cosy warm in winter with a log burning stove, modern thermostatic radiators and an integral air cleaning system. All modern appliances and fittings. Comfortable and tasteful furniture and decor with Emily's theatre-trained eye for sumptuousness, detail and cleanliness. For Graham, a professional garden designer and artist, Le Joli Pré (the pretty meadow), is an on-going labour of love, understated, with wild flowers, apple, cherry, plum trees, roses, lavender and cut curved paths. An idyllic setting with wonderful long distant views across the Normandy 'bocage' landscape, with the medieval castle above our meadow. Rental is for a couple, sorry, no children or pets. Be among our cherished guests to escape and relax in this beautiful cottage and meadow in nearby Medieval Heaven. Reasonably and competitively priced, with 5-star reviews, all inclusive with no hidden extras, no small print and simple secure payment. All prices have been reduced.

Last minute bookings: Early booking is recommended for this popular holiday cottage. Now with instant booking, please allow a minimum of three days before the start of your holiday to give the housekeeper time to professionally prepare everything for your arrival. Please also see our own website to help you make an informed choice: Popular with Americans, Canadians, Europeans and Australians too because of the beautiful and unique location, the convenience and comfort among many other positive delights. We want you to have a wonderful, relaxing, uplifting and uncomplicated stay, and return over the years, as many do, to our lovely home in France, le joli pré. Sincerely, Graham and Emily.

More Details


Domfront Cottage Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • cottage (detached)
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 1614 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Check-in: 4:00 PM
  • /
  • Check-out: 11:00 AM
  • Max. occupancy: 2
  • Max. adults: 2
  • Min. age of primary renter: 21
  • Not suitable for children
  • Parties/events not allowed
  • Pets not allowed
  • Non smoking only
Location Type:
  • Rural
  • Town
  • Village
  • Away From It All
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Activities Guide
  • Broadband Access
  • Firewood
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet ...
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided ...
  • Living Room ...
  • Local Activities Guide
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Parking ...
  • Parking On Street
  • Security System
  • Thermos Bottle
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Wireless Internet ...
  • Wood Stove ...
  • 4 Ring Stove
  • Blender
  • Coffee Grinder
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Grill
  • Ice Maker
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove ...
  • Toaster
  • Dining
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 6 people
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , combination tub/shower , Next to the bedroom.
  • Modern tiled bathroom with nice touches of French style, next to the bedroom with drinking water, high pressure and plenty of hot water for showering or a relaxing bath.
  • 1 Bedroom, Sleeps 2
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 double
  • Classic French King Henry II double bed with lovely linen and a bespoke comfortable mattress. Views from one window down the lane to the medieval church of Notre Dame Sur L'Eau where Thomas Becket said Mass. Views from the other window up to King Henry II and Queen Eleanor of Acquitaine's medieval castle. The guest bedroom also has direct easy access to the courtyard and meadow on the same level as the house is conveniently built partially into the hillside.
  • Books
  • Books for Adults
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player ...
  • Games ...
  • Radio
  • Stereo ...
  • Television ...
  • VCR
  • Video Library ...
  • Beach Chairs
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Golf ...
  • Lawn / Garden ...
  • Outdoor Furniture
  • Patio
  • Terrace
  • 6 garden chairs
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • Low Allergen Environment
  • wheelchair inaccessible
Onsite Services:
  • Housekeeper
  • autumn foliage
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • forests
  • library
  • playground
  • pond
  • restaurants
  • ruins
Leisure Activities:
  • bird watching
  • gambling casinos
  • horseback riding
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • equestrian events
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • hunting
  • mountain biking
  • swimming
  • tennis
The cottage is professionally cleaned and made ready for your arrival. The gardener maintains the meadow and the housekeeper provides you with the key on arrival. The kitchen is comprehensively equipped but if you do not feel inclined to cook, there are lovely restaurants, bars and cafes within easy walking distance. Free WiFi and iPod docking station. Free parking almost everywhere in Domfront. We send you full details on booking your holiday. See our own website link below to help you make an informed choice. Our own website is: Please feel free to ask us any questions any time, before and even during your holiday. Sincerely, Graham and Emily.


Wonderful! 4.9/5 -
(44 traveler reviews)

88% Complete
9% Complete
2% Complete
0% Complete
0% Complete
Romantic Warm Cosy Cottage by King Henry's Castle in nearby Medieval Heaven
average rating of 4.8636365 based on 44 reviews

Pretty, very comfortable and well equipped

  • 5 of 5

Beautiful home in delightful surroundings - we loved the cosy logburner. The property had everything we needed with great decorative touches.

Domfront was a lovely and very interesting town, with plenty to see and do in the area. We were very grateful for the walking maps and enjoyed many of the local walks, especially the one finishing at the biscuit factory.

  • Submitted: Dec 11, 2017
  • Stayed: November 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you so much, such a lovely and encouraging review for us and future guests. We love the log burner too and the biscuit factory. Thanks again, wishing you a very Happy Christmas and New Year. All the best, Graham and Emily.
Did you find this review helpful?
0 0

Cute & Cosy but don't break anything !!

  • 3 of 5

Stayed here in September. Domfront is a nice if unremarkable village, a couple of nice restaurants, some excellent patisserie's, 2 good supermarkets. All the people we met we're very friendly. It's a good area for cycling, you have the Paris to Mont St Michel trail running close by and plenty of lovely quiet rural roads in fantastic scenery.

The cottage was nice, tastefully decorated and well equipped although probably 'cosier' than expected but perfectly fine for 2. There are nice gardens at the rear with great views and would be really special in summer. Only minor observations are that there is no off street parking and as the street is narrow you do have to carefully park right next to the wall (inches away) to allow enough space so dustbin lorries and fuel lorries can get by. There is a fairly secure rear garden to store bikes but no covered or lockable area but these are small gripes. The biggest disappointment was that we declared to the owner that we had broken 2 bowls and 1 plate (all IKEA) and the owner retained the full £50 deposit. We queried this with the owner who stated that the housekeeper would have to travel 1 hr to the nearest IKEA in Caen 50 miles away. We have stayed in many places around the world and have never experienced this before, we always strive to be good guests, leaving properties clean and tidy afterwards so we were a little shocked with this response. I would recommend this house but just don't break anything !!. (we were then offered one free night if we booked again)

  • Submitted: Sep 26, 2017
  • Stayed: September 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: We explained carefully and clearly to you in a private email the reasons why we had to withhold your deposit. You actually broke more than three items and thank you for the note you left for the housekeeper. We have only ever withheld a minimal amount from a deposit from two previous guests, but in your particular case we had to look at it differently. The tone of your review has really upset us, as we pride ourselves on our guests being happy. Our housekeeper's time and services is not free of charge, this includes trips to replace items. As a gesture of goodwill, we have decided to refund you the full amount, because we don't want your holiday experience to be spoiled by this frustration on your part. We also wish everyone who reads these reviews to know that we always strive to be honourable people and don't take any of our guest bookings lightly. Please send us your bank details via our personal email, as we can't do this through HomeAway. We sincerely wish you all the best. Sincerely, Graham and Emily.
Did you find this review helpful?
0 0
Los Osos, California USA

Perfect location for a a Normandy getaway.

  • 5 of 5

Well appointed and cozy home situated right next to historical landmarks. This place has it all, and a charming garden to take it all in. Great views and comfortable furnishings made this the perfect vacation home to see the Normandy sights.

  • Submitted: Sep 18, 2017
  • Stayed: September 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you Julian, We just had our first review after many years from a previous guest that upset us with her mostly bland, unfair and inaccurate comments. Your review, like most reviews gives confidence to future guests who may also wish to holiday in this beautiful, unique and relaxing environment. Thank you again, you are most welcome to holiday at le joli pre any time.
Did you find this review helpful?
0 0
Los Osos, California USA

The perfect location to exploring Normandy.

  • 5 of 5

Cozy and well fitted, clean and lovely cottage in a could not be situated better location in Domfront. Beautiful views surround from this delightful and romantic spot. The perfect cottage set below a medieval town for two to enjoy the surrounding historical spots.

  • Submitted: Sep 2, 2017
  • Stayed: August 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Such a lovely review, thank you so much. You truly embraced everything around you with a wonderful and positive spirit of adventure. Please do come back soon.
Did you find this review helpful?
0 0

Character cottage in a fascinating corner of Normandy

  • 5 of 5

Well set up and maintained cottage with garden looking over meadow towards ruins of old Norman castle

  • Submitted: Jul 29, 2017
  • Stayed: July 2017
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
Did you find this review helpful?
0 0

Cosy cottage for two

  • 5 of 5

My boyfriend and I enjoyed a three night stay at the joli pre. The cottage and garden are georgous, perfect place to relax. The house is very well equipped for a comfortable stay. Highly recommended!

  • Submitted: Jun 21, 2017
  • Stayed: June 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
Did you find this review helpful?
0 0


Graham and Emily Swain
Member since: 2010
Premier Partner

This HomeAway partner has demonstrated and is committed to fast response times, the best rates, and a great guest experience.

Speaks: english, french, Emily speaks French.
Response time:
Within a few hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
February 25, 2018

About Graham and Emily Swain

A little bit about the owners: Graham and Emily bought le joli pre in 2004. It was derelict. Their vision was for a complete sympathetic restoration using only the most appropriate materials and the best local French architect and French artisans. The house was completely gutted, including all the structural timbers, because of dry rot, leaving literally an empty box. The ancient staircase was retained from the first floor but the lower part sadly had to go. Everything inside has been replaced with state-of-the-art structural materials and is still very much in keeping with the original character.

Graham and Emily Swain purchased this cottage in 2004

Why Graham and Emily Swain chose Domfront

A little bit more: Graham and Emily love France - As treble soloist, Graham sang and recorded in all the major northern French cathedrals. His subsequent degree in Architecture helped him work with the French architect for the best resolution in challenging decision making. Emily studied French literature and language at the University of the Sorbonne in Paris. She drove this project forward towards the vision they had when they first saw this beautiful but sadly neglected house in probably one of the best locations in Domfront. The large meadow was an unkempt jungle and is now a very natural and relaxing sanctuary, with beautiful understated planting, wild flowers and cut curved grass areas to enjoy all-year-round. Emily, a professionally trained actress, who now works in professional theatre and film and Graham who paints contemporary landscapes, and designs and builds bespoke gardens, absolutely love le joli pré. Their hope is that all who holiday here will also appreciate fully this unique and very special and romantic home.

What makes this cottage unique

The ground floor is now open plan and all the rooms have been altered to make the most of the available space, views and natural light. The loft, now a studio, has been opened up and is also now open plan with six velux windows and more amazing views. The log burning stove was reinstated in the sitting room and now forms a functional focal point for cosy lazy days throughout the winter months. Le joli pre has the advantage of being in the countryside and also very much connected with the historic town of Domfront, as once you arrive, you won't really need your car, with all the local facilities within walking distance. Please read the many reviews from our cherished guests over the years who return again and again to this sanctuary of comfort and delight.


Nearest Barpub
300 Metres
Bars and cafes, a short walk
Nearest Ferry
107 Kilometres
Caen/Ouistreham car ferry
Nearest Golf
20 Kilometres
Bagnoles de L'Orne
Nearest Train
20 Kilometres
Flers (Paris train and taxi to Domfront)
Nearest Restaurant
300 Metres
Restaurants and shops, a short walk
Nearest Beach
61 Kilometres
Avranches (WWII beaches 1.5 hours)
Car: necessary

A delightful romantic cottage located in Historic Medieval Domfront in a prime position and an environmentally protected area. On a hill in a private quiet road, with amazing long distant views from the house and meadow and up to King Henry II and Queen Eleanor of Acquitaine's castle. The surrounding area is steeped in history, with a short amble up the road to shops, restaurants, bars, and the boulangerie...for your morning croissant. The garden is maintained by the gardener and designed by the owner, a professional garden designer.

Please note: You have exclusive use of the house and meadow, the owners are not present. The one additional double bedroom is kept locked. The 'Housekeeper' lives nearby, she's very friendly and helpful.

The large cottage is professionally cleaned and made ready for your arrival.

Competitively and reasonably priced, all-inclusive, with free WiFi, 5-star reviews and no small print. Do book early to avoid disappointment. We are not increasing our prices for 2018 at the moment and once you book your holiday the price will not increase.

See our own website to help you make an informed choice (website:

Other Activities: Lovely restaurants, cafes and shops within short walking distance.

Cycling: Cycling is big in France and just below le joli pre is the converted railway line, now a flat cycle and walking track stretching for miles, all the way to the coast and Mont Saint Michel. Popular with all ages. Bring your own bikes for a wonderful experience.

As previous guests have pointed out, the photos do not do show the lovely cottage the beautiful meadow and amazing views justice - this is an unique and special place for our cherished guests to experience and enjoy, with wonderful memories year after year.


Rates & Availability

Taxes and fees are additional

Additional information about rental rates

Cleaning Fee $62.84
Damage Deposit $69.82

Now with Instant Booking please allow a space of 3 days before the start date of your holiday. This allows the housekeeper to professionally clean and prepare everything for your arrival. The price will not change once you have booked your holiday. We strive to remain reasonably priced and competitive. If you have any questions any time, please do ask.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

  • 50% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
  • 100% refund if canceled at least 60 days before arrival date.
  • Service Fee fully refunded on cancellations that qualify for 100% refund.

You might like these similar properties