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Charming private Chateau, quiet hilltop location, stunning views & large pool - The Secret Cottage

Bedrooms 2
Space 1,614 sq. ft.
Property type cottage



The Secret Cottage

A lovely and romantic 2 double Bed Cottage with shared, large, heated, salt-water Swimming Pool hidden in a most beautiful and secluded garden in the grounds of a fairytale hilltop Chateau near the French Pyrenees, 50mins drive South of cosmopolitan Toulouse, the 'Pink City'.

The Cottage and Chateau are situated in a quiet and stunning area with unbelievable mountain and valley views.

The Cottage has a large Living Room with Kitchen/Diner and French TV with some English/German news channels, a hallway, a Utility Room, 2 Double Bedrooms (one very large where twin beds can be set up on request) and a shared family Bathroom and it's located very close to the large salt-water Swimming Pool, which is sometimes shared with the owners.

Parking on the estate.

The lovely market town of Aspet has all amenities and is a 10 min drive away.

All sorts of activities are available nearby and the nearest Ski resort is 30 mins' drive away!

Come and enjoy rural French life in stylish surroundings

More Details

About the property

Spectacular hilltop Chateau

An enchanting château in exquisite gardens, with yoga barn and large, secluded, heated pool.

First you come through the gate and see the lawns and the giant cedars of Lebanon, then the Pyrenean peaks on the southern horizon, and then the house, restful on its little plâteau, simple, elegant, perfect, with 18th-century proportions. Welcome to another world: one of art, beauty, serenity, fine museum pieces, and a dash of humour. The housekeeper is a treasure and can cater for you – though your kitchen, big, charming, classical but modern, would be an absolute pleasure to cook in. Salon, library, dining room and the grandest of bedrooms glow with French, English and Chinese antiques and the entire house is a work of art – there are beautiful parquet floors and magnificent plaster ceilings, a grand staircase and oriental designer stencilling. The rooms in the attic are more child-friendly and a perfect place for children to sleep, play or hide.

The gardener cleans the pool in the morning for you (open Apr/May to Oct, depending on weather)

Our Garden: The Chateau boasts magnificent, mature gardens & parkland; nature lovers may explore the grounds discovering hundreds of stunning roses, a sunken herb garden, a white wisteria-clad pergola, an exotic garden, a giant-bamboo walk, a green house & cactus collection, a large pond filled with Koi-Carp & Goldfish with bog garden, stepping stones & many ancient trees in fairytale surroundings.

Our garden is best enjoyed in the Blooming Season and in Summer.

It's easy to spot on the premises humming-bird moths, great white owls, falcons, hawks, dears, colourful butterflies, dragon flies, frogs, hedgehogs, pheasants....

The Chateau's situation on its own hilltop affords uninterrupted, breathtaking views of the valley & the Pyrenees in one of the most beautiful parts of France. The closeness to the Spanish border affords the house long, hot Summers with a gentle breeze from the nearby mountains and snowy Winters enjoying skiing in nearby resorts followed by cozy time by our fireplaces

Facilities include:: Large salt-water swimming pool with sun loungers, umbrellas, inflatable lilos etc. Steam room, bathroom with shower by the pool, table tennis, children swings & hammocks hanging from the mature trees around the Chateau, shaded areas, seating throughout the park and garden, tables and chairs for outdoor eating, huge yoga barn with amazing views of the Chateau and pool, massage tables, Gaudiesque mosaic wall and seating area, BBQ, croquet lawn and set..

Large plasma screen with French TV, DVD/VCR, Ipod docks & WIFI Internet, large Library.

Exquisite antique furniture and original features and fittings throughout the Chateau, marble fireplaces, as well as central heating for winter bookings. Comfy sofas and chairs, 2 dining tables, huge, fully fitted kitchen, Juliette balcony on the first floor, Moroccan boudoir, 6 double bedrooms &1 family bedroom, 6 bathrooms of which 4 en-suite.

Amazing corners and views for meditation, drawing, outdoor eating, photography..

Car-park, 2 bicycles...

Activities/local attractions: Come see the Tour De France zoom past, enjoy a cafe' creme in the charming village of Aspet (10min drive), visit the local farmers' markets in Aspet, Salies Du Salat or St Gaudens.

Go for a walk locally or to Lac d'Oo, one of the prettiest walks in the Pyrenees!

Visit the local SPAs or St Giron/St Lizier or the pilgrimage towns of Lourdes and nearby St Bertrand Des Comminges, a Unesco World Heritage Site, or cosmopolitan Toulouse, the 'Pink City', with its canals and bridges, its 'Aérospatiale', home to the Airbus 380, the biggest jumbo in the world & its fantastic shopping around Place Capitol

The wonderful road network and its location make the Chateau the perfect place for excursions, city trips to Toulouse or Pau, shopping, buying local produce, sightseeing in the Gers, walks, hiking, skiing, white water rafting, canoeing, tennis, golf, horse riding, cycling, paragliding, vide greniers, art courses, yoga holidays, family activities, trips to Spain, Carcassonne, Biarritz etc.

More Details

Available Rentals


Rental rates include linen, towels, pool towels, some toiletries.
Use of the outdoor swimming pool is from May to end of Sept/mid October (depending on weather) ; in Winter the pool is closed.
A Cottage central heating charge will be levied for Winter bookings.
A security deposit of £200 against loss/breakages is required.
Euro payments also possible.


Encausse-les-Thermes Cottage Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • cottage (detached)
  • Guests provide their own meals
  • Housekeeper Included
Floor Area:
  • 1614 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Check-in: 4:00 PM / Check-out: 11:00 AM
  • Max. occupancy: 4
  • children welcome
  • pets not allowed
  • non smoking only
Location Type:
  • Mountain
  • Rural
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Rustic
  • Spa
  • Sports & Activities
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Activities Guide
  • Basic Soaps
  • Fireplace ...
  • Fitness Room / Equipment ...
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet ...
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided ...
  • Living Room ...
  • Local Activities Guide
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Parking ...
  • Parking Off Street ...
  • Shampoo
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided ...
  • Tumble Dryer ...
  • Washing Machine ...
  • Wireless Internet ...
  • Coffee Maker
  • Cooking Utensils ...
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Freezer
  • Grill
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove
  • Toaster
  • Child's Highchair
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 4 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • Majorelle - toilet , combination tub/shower , Morocco inspired, large family Bathroom with bathtub
    Bathroom 2 - toilet , shower , Large bathroom next to Cottage and Pool
  • The Majorelle Bathroom has a bathtub with shower and is shared by the 2 bedrooms, however there's a second bathroom a few metres away overlooking the Swimming Pool. Soap and basic toiletries are provided free of charge. The style of the bathroom is inspired by the Majorelle Garden in Marrakesh (hence the name) and it's comfortable and eclectic.
  • 2 Bedrooms, Sleeps 4
  • Sunflower Bedroom - 1 double , 1 baby crib , A very large double or twin bedroom with lovely views
    Bijoux Bedroom - 1 double , A lovely double bedroom with views over the garden and pool
  • Both bedrooms are lovely, comfortable & brightly coloured, and, as the Sunflower Room is particularly large, 2 twin beds can be set up on request. There's lovely and colourful art from all over the world throughout the cottage. The estate is extremely quiet and surrounded by nature. The Cottage itself is covered in scented roses and climbers, which reach all the way to the bedroom windows. Both have lovely views and share a good size family bathroom with bathtub on the same floor. The cottage is bathed in light and is surrounded by a leafy garden. Bedlinen, towels and pool towels are all provided free of charge and changed once a week. A weekly maid service is also included in the price. Extra maid service or an extra change of linen and towels can be arranged for a fee. .
  • Books ...
  • Books for Adults
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Games ...
  • Games for Kids
  • Ping Pong Table
  • Radio
  • Satellite / Cable ...
  • Stereo ...
  • Television ...
  • Video Library ...
  • Beach Chairs
  • Beach Towels
  • Beach Umbrellas
  • Bicycles ...
  • Child's Swing
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Deck Furniture
  • Golf ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Lawn / Garden ...
  • Outdoor Furniture
  • Outdoor Grill ...
  • Patio
  • Screen Porch / Veranda
  • Ski & Snowboard ...
  • Tennis ...
  • 4 garden chairs
  • 4 beach chairs
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • Low Allergen Environment
  • unsuitable for elderly or infirm
  • wheelchair inaccessible
Pool / Spa:
  • Heated Pool
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Private Pool ...
  • Sauna ...
Onsite Services:
  • Housekeeper
  • Housekeeping
  • Private Chef
  • Staff
  • arboretum
  • autumn foliage
  • botanical garden
  • caves
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • duty free shops
  • forests
  • library
  • live theater
  • museums
  • playground
  • pond
  • recreation center
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • theme parks
  • waterfalls
  • winery tours
Leisure Activities:
  • bird watching
  • eco tourism
  • gambling casinos
  • horseback riding
  • outlet shopping
  • paddle boating
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • sledding
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • Babysitter
  • fitness center
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • equestrian events
  • fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • golf privileges optional
  • hiking
  • hunting big game
  • hunting small game
  • ice skating
  • mountain biking
  • mountain climbing
  • mountaineering
  • paragliding
  • rafting
  • roller blading
  • sailing
  • ski lift privileges
  • skiing
  • spelunking
  • surfing
  • swimming
  • tennis
  • whitewater rafting
  • wind-surfing
The Garden Cottage is hidden in the mist of a beautiful garden, next to the gorgeous pool area. It shares the following facilities with the Chateau, which is sometimes occupied by the owners and their guests: a large salt-water Swimming Pool & Pool Bathroom; plenty of Sun-Loungers, Table-Tennis, parts of the beautiful Garden and Park, Garden seating and large Koi Carp Pond (please do not feed the fish). There's a weekly maid service included in the price, as well as linen and towels changed weekly. Extra cleaning, extra linen and towel changes, meal service etc can be arranged with the housekeeper for a fee. Please enquire with the owners. Twin beds can be put on request in one of the bedrooms. Car park available on the estate.


Exceptional! 5/5 -
(11 traveler reviews)

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The Secret Cottage
average rating of 5.0 based on 11 reviews

A charming cottage set in the most beautiful place

  • 5 of 5

We are a family of 4: we rented this charming cottage immersed in the most beautiful garden within the grounds of a grand chateau in late Oct'14; amazingly the weather was stunning with temperatures touching 31C on a daily basis.

The pool is huge and the area around it so beautiful, kitted out with comfy sun loungers, tables, chairs and even an incredible mosaic sitting area made by the wonderful owners! The garden is just incredible and the facilities very nice indeed. There's a charming market town, Aspet, just a short drive away with 2 weekly farmers markets and all amenities one needs: we spent many hours sitting in the local cafe' munching on croissants and meeting lovely, friendly people. The area is famous for its fois gras, beautiful mountain, wines, lakes, the Tour de France (it's on the Pyrenean leg of the route!) and the vicinity to Spain (Val d'Aran) with its wonderful Michelin quality restaurants, tapas bars and many nick-nack shops and wine merchants. What a wonderful place! We shall be back next year.

  • Submitted: Jan 28, 2015
  • Stayed: October 2014
  • Source: HomeAway
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Thank you.

  • 5 of 5

Our family stayed in this charming cottage for 2 weeks of blissful happiness.

The cottage is fully equipped, bright, comfortable, full of features and lovely things and a joy to stay in.

The salt-water pool is just a few steps away, huge, heated, surrounded by mosaic walls and kitted out with beautiful Moroccan sun loungers: a delight!

The garden is incredibly beautiful, fragrant with the scent and colours of thousands of flowers, plants and ancient trees and carefully landscaped to afford stunning prospects from every corner.

The chateau itself is gorgeous, just like in a fairytale.

The owners are charming and invited us to a drink in their Chateau, which was very welcome.

We loved the charming local town of Aspet where we ate croissants and drank coffee every morning in the square: the place is filled with interesting people, food stalls, lovely little shops and beautiful, ancient architecture.

We took trips to nearby Carcassonne, the Gers, Biarritz and visited the fantastic restaurants in Bossost in nearby Spain (only 40 mins drive door to door!), then returned to the cottage to watch on the huge flat screen TV one of the DVDs the owners kindly provided.

We truly had the holiday of a lifetime and will be back every year.

Thank you for a perfect time.

  • Submitted: Dec 16, 2011
  • Stayed: September 2011
  • Source: HomeAway
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  • 5 of 5

Our family spent 2 perfect weeks in this charming Cottage next to the most beautiful chateau. The Cottage is colourful and lovely, comfy, private and extremely quiet. The beds are fantastic and the family bathroom generous. We loved cooking in the large, fully fitted kitchen and then eating the food al fresco on the paved patio area.

The Cottage is perfectly situated in a hidden corner behind the pool: all we had to do was step outside and jump in! The pool is huge and heated: what a treat.

The garden is truly outstanding: there are so many beautiful spots and benches to sit on and look in awe at the surroundings. The views are outstanding from every side. The area is fantastic for those who love outdoor activities like climbing, cycling, water rafting, speleology, sight seeing, nature walks, skiing and more. The local market town of Aspet is a treat and the perfect place to while away the morning buying fresh produce in the farmers market, drinking a grande creme in the central square, buying fresh meat, croissants and baguettes in the local stores and generally watching the world go by. We did a day trip to Biarritz and one to the Val d'Aran in Spain, both beautiful and worthwhile. We also visited the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Carcassonne, only 90 minutes away: stunning.

Thank you to the lopvely owners for sharing their home with us and for inviting us over to the Chateau for a glass of local Gascogne wine. Merci. We'll be back next Summer.

  • Submitted: Dec 16, 2011
  • Stayed: September 2011
  • Source: HomeAway
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  • 5 of 5

My partner and I stayed in this charming cottage hidden in the amazing garden of this stunning chateau in July'11. The place has it all: a fantastic, huge, salt-water, heated pool with Moroccan sun loungers, an incredible garden that would not look out of place in a grand British country house, unbelievable views of the valley and the mountains, a lake filled with colourful fish, flowers and roses everywhere, a fantastic market town nearby, lots of activities and, best of all, the Tour the France wooshing by every year. we could not ask for more. The cottage is sweet and pretty and reflects the good taste and creativity of the owners. It's comfortable and so quiet, we slept like babies every night. Our perfect day started with a French breakfast in the town of Aspet on the beautiful square, then a swim in the pool followed by sunbathing, a healthy lunch outdoors, finding a hidden spot in the marvelous garden where to read a good book, and a trip to nearby Bossost in Spain for Michelin star food and a great welcome! What an easy life. We shall return next year and this time we'll stay at least 2 weeks. Highly recommended. This Cottage is truly Heaven on Earth.

  • Submitted: Aug 4, 2011
  • Stayed: July 2011
  • Source: HomeAway
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Harpenden UK

beautiful setting, charming and considerate owners

  • 5 of 5

The closest we've got to the perfect holiday - a wonderfully grand, traditional setting, with modern comforts and convenience and a glorious garden. Plenty of lovely locations to visit, from ancient towns to mountain walks and a roadside view of the Tour de France. Undiluted French surroundings. We appreciated very much the friendly and helpful manner of the owners, which enabled us to get the most out of our stay.

  • Submitted: Sep 19, 2010
  • Stayed: July 2010
  • Source: HomeAway
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Prefect dream cottage

  • 5 of 5

We found the cottage to be everything that was on the net. It was like a dream with the views and location. We had the best time ever . The oweners were very helpfully and lovely. It was clean and well maintained. We found lots to do both at the cottage and lots of attractions and activities near by. It is my wish to return again and I would recommend it to any of my friends.

  • Submitted: Sep 13, 2010
  • Stayed: July 2009
  • Source: HomeAway
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Member since: 2006
Speaks: english, french, spanish, italian
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
February 13, 2018

About Owners

Art, food, antiques & garden lover. I love hiking inn the local mountains, swimming in mountain lakes, eating in nearby Spain, going on day trips to the Atlantic Coast, Biarritz & San Sebastian.

Owners purchased this cottage in 1992

Why Owners chose Encausse-les-Thermes

As soon as we saw the Chateau, sitting ever so pretty on its hilltop, we were wooed by its incredible views and stunning situation near the majestic Pyrenees . The area is full of beauty, light and colours and the Chateau and its ancient stone barns are so full of history, quirks, original features and the best old-fashioned workmanship created. It just took our breath away.

What makes this cottage unique

The estate is surrounded by ancient stone walls and barns and it's therefore totally private. It has incredible views from absolutely every window and every corner. The garden is beautiful, large and private, filled with flowers, rare plants, a lake, fountains, colonnades, roses and amazing features and it's filled with birds, butterflies and all sorts of wildlife.

The salt water swimming pool is large & heated, the area around it is paved and it's surrounded by barns and a scalloped hedge and colourful mosaics with seating and barbeque areas.

There's a huge yoga barn overlooking the pool and a beautiful mosaic steam room and shower.


Nearest Airport
74 Kilometres
Toulouse Blagnac
Nearest Barpub
7 Kilometres
Nearest Ferry
188 Kilometres
Nearest Golf
21 Kilometres
Capelé, Montrejeau
Nearest Train
7 Kilometres
St Gaudens
Nearest Motorway
8 Kilometres
Junction 18, St Gaudens
Nearest Restaurant
7 Kilometres
Les Trois Vallées, Aspet
Nearest Ski
30 Kilometres
Le Mourtis
Nearest Beach
178 Kilometres
Car: necessary

Dating back to the 18th Century this charming Château is situated on a hilltop with breathtaking panoramic views of the idyllic Gascogne countryside & the nearby Pyrenees; only 50 mins drive from bustling Toulouse and just over 1hr from Pau. In the nearby charming market town of Aspet, the perfect place to enjoy a cafe' au lait al fresco, you can pick up fresh croissants/baguettes from the boulangerie , local meat from the boucherie for a BBQ by the pool, which you can accompany with a local Gascogne wine. The area is excellent for cycling, walking, horse-riding, canoeing, fishing, golf, tennis. The nearest ski resort is 30mins away & so is the Spanish border. The Tour de France comes through the area every year, often past the Château walls! Nearby are ancient Cathar ruins, such as Foix & Montségur, picturesque market towns like Aurignac, St Martory, St Lizier & St Bertrand De Comminges, one of the stops of the famous UNESCO protected Camino de Santiago De Compostela.. The medieval town of Carcassonne is just over an hour away & the Mediterranean coast a little further. Lourdes is 40min & Biarritz 1.5h.

Other Activities: Tour De France, botanical tours, farmers markets, white water rafting, horse riding, shopping in Toulouse, trips to Lourdes, hiking, walking, skiing, go-karting, speleology, art, painting and pottery courses.

Golf: -The nearest golf course (6-18 hole ) is open all year and is only 20 mins away in Capelé, Montrejeau:

- The 18 hole Golf de Lannemezan, 250 Rue Doct Ueberchlag, Lannemezan, is only 35 mins away by motorway (45km) and is set in gorgeous countryside facing a stunning mountain scenery:

-The Golf de Luchon, Montauban-de-Luchon, is only 43Km away or 45 mins drive.:

-Hameau Baudet, Montardit, near the charming town of St Girons, is only 47 Km or 50 mins drive & is set in some of the most stunning French countryside:

Ski: The nearest Ski Resort, Le Mourtis, is only 16 Km away (25 mins' drive)!

There's also a wide choice of resorts all over the Pyrenees, such as Bagnere de Luchon (45 mins or 43 Km), Le Pic du Midi (50 mins), St Lary (1 hr) etc.

You may also want to visit the world-class Spanish Ski slopes of Baiqueira (64 Km or around 1 hr's drive), truly magnificent.


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