- english, french
Linda and I have busy lives in England, both working from home, and with two grown up children. Our house in France has become a part of family life: a place we treasure and where we come together and where we know we will eventually live. Its also a place where we've been delighted to welcome guests for over 11 years..
Owner purchased this House in 2005
Why Owner chose Migron
We spent more than five years looking for the perfect location. It had to be in beautiful countryside, within striking distance of the coast, close enough to get to comfortably and far enough south to have a long, warm sunny summer. In fact, the area is within a micro climate that is the 2nd sunniest in France. We first visited it on a wet January day. Even then we knew we had found the place. The huge rooms of the house, the careful restoration that created a fantastic atmosphere and its quirky character made it irresistible. And then we discovered the towns.. Saintes, Cognac, Angouleme, each brilliant but with a distinctive character. And Oleron, France's 2nd largest island, but hardly mentioned in England, with huge unspoilt sandy beaches. We were absolutely sold.
What makes this House unique
We holiday at the house each year ourselves. We never tire of the countryside and villages, the local walks and just soaking up the atmosphere of the towns. In truth, we spend most of our time at the house. It just seems to fit our mood. There's the shade of L'Ecurie's orchard and herb garden. And Thouvenin with its quiet, almost hidden spaces, to sit, read, think, snooze.. And the pools big enough for a real family swim or the competitiveness of winning at boules or table tennis. Eating outdoors is for us an essential part of summer and there's nothing better than walking down the road to buy fresh bread to have with cheese and wine. Thouvenin's new bar has just added another wonderful space to relax. And as the evening finally falls, seeing the stars without extraneous light, brighter than I've ever seen.
Check-in: 4:00 PM
Check-out: 11:00 AM
Canceled bookings will not receive a refund
Great stay in hot and sunny rural France
Thouvenin was perfect for us (2 families) staying for 2 weeks. The owner provided an immense amount of helpful and useful information. Very much appreciated.
The property is really large with a very big/lovely open dining space that overlooks the pool. The formal dining room is very big but we only used it once when the weather wasn’t warm enough to eat outside. The kitchen is well stocked and the washing machine and dishwasher are a great asset! The lounge is a great place to escape from the heat also. The bedrooms are sizeable with 2 having super king size beds and 2 with bunks (single on top and double on bottom). We took our own pillows as we are never sure if we end up with square pillows on French properties. As it turns out they had regular pillows!
The pool was a great size. When we arrived the weather hadn’t been great the week before so the pool was cold. Only the kids braved it. But then over the week it warmed up just right. Make sure the cover goes on overnight and off again in the morning to benefit from the sun warming in the day.
We used the bar area frequently and used the fridge/freezer as our drinks fridge as the fridge in the kitchen is a standard fridge freezer which wouldn’t accommodate all our food and drinks.
The one thing to be mindful of is that despite it having Wi-fi the internet into the house is pretty bad. We weren’t able to connect most of the time and trying to do something like download emails was nigh on impossible. It’s a function of rural France unfortunately, thankfully we had good data on our euro roaming so make sure you’re well stocked on data allowances.
If you want to keep the house cool the trick, as we discovered, is to open the windows first thing then shut the windows and shutters from about 11am then reopen them all again once the sun has set and let the air flow around the house.
Migron is a tiny village in the middle of vineyards a plenty. It’s really beautiful. There is a small museum down the road which you can visit and taste their own cognac. Another thing to bear in mind is that in August the Charentes area seems to go on holiday. So the shop in the village never opened, although the butcher and Boulanger did open for limited hours for most of the week, don’t expect to find anything open past 12 on Sundays! Be prepared to drive to cognac or Saintes for supermarkets and not on Sunday afternoon!
A great array of markets to choose from in the area.
All in all a lovely stay.
Lovely stay in Migron
We had a lovely stay in Migron. The house is lovely. We found it spacious, clean and comfortable.
Downstairs there is a well equipped kitchen with everything you need, a comfortable living room, a rather grand dining room and a small toilet. Downstairs was comfortably cool after coming in from the heat.
Upstairs the bedrooms were comfortable and clean. The two bathrooms meant no queues for the shower.
Outside, the garden is beautifully kept, with a variety of areas to sit. The canopy at the back gives shelter from the sun for the outside table and chairs and the barbeque and the table tennis table, There is a bistro table and chairs at the back door and also at a terrace at the pool.
We loved the pool. It's a good size and well maintained.
The mezzanine bar area is a fun addition to the house. It feels like you are in an old French movie!
Migron is very quiet. The local boulanger has the freshest bread and pastries, but you need to get there early. There is also a local butcher close to the house with a good selection of meat. The local supermarket didn't open during our stay, but we used the small supermarket in nearby Burie,
Between days at the pool we visited the surrounding area including Cognac, Bordeaux, Royan and La Rochelle.
The property owner and managers were very helpful and gave us lots of information and recommendations for the local area.
Large and well presented property- short drive to supermarkets or a walk to the local bakers
We originally booked the bigger half of the property (Thouvenin) to allow for a family break for 7 adults. However, it transpired that we ended up with only three. Plenty of room for us! The bedrooms are an excellent size and the 'main' bedrooms have large double beds and plenty of space. These are located at each end of the property. In between these two rooms are two further bedrooms which contain bunk beds- a double below and a single above in each room. Again the room sizes are very good. There is a family bathroom at one end of the house on the upper floor and a new shower room at the other end. All clean and well maintained. Downstairs is incredibly spacious, the kitchen is well equipped, the living room very large with two '3' seat sofas ( brand new) and several chairs plus a small table and a two dining chairs. Across from the living room is a wonderful dining room with decorative fireplace- it would have been great to sit around with the whole party- a little lost on just three of us but we still made use of it. The house was heated and was comfortable, the upstairs shower room has no heating but there is a stand alone radiator that can be used- not a problem in summer I'm sure- we were there for New Year so a little chilly.
Outside has the seating areas, pool and petanque court but given the time of year we didn't make use and so can't comment.
The village has a few shops, a butcher, baker and minimart but we didn't use these due to the opening hours during the holiday period. However, there are good supermarkets only a short drive in either direction (10 mins tops) in Martha or Burie. These catered for our needs very well.
We did the run to Bordeaux airport twice and it is about 1 hour 20 mins or so each way. Again the time of year may have an impact.
Antony provided fantastic amounts of information about the property and area plus all info on the local towns, markets, sightseeing etc etc. This has been the best communication we have had from an owner so thank you.
We took the ferry to Calais and drove down- probably a little to far for one day in winter- it took about 7 1/2 hours. Consequently we left a day early to give ourselves a break of journey and an overnight stop to break it up. Summer may well be a better time to do it. However, the welcome pack was most gratefully received!! A nice touch indeed.
We would certainly return if we were staying in this area again. Overall a quiet and relaxing winter break.
Thank you for your lovely review. We fell in love with the house many years ago and its a pleasure to welcome guests to it. Its huge rooms have allowed us to have family reunions with ease. Thanks again and hopefully you'll be able to return one summer to enjoy the outside as well!
Great value for money
I will start by saying that although there were only 6 of us staying there, Antony, the owner opened up the additional cottage next door as it was vacant for the week which allowed us even more space at no extra cost. This was thoroughly decent of him and indicates we were renting from someone who was genuinely keen on us having a good time. All that said there was more than adequate space in the main gite. We have stayed in numerous gites with Owners Direct in France, and whilst some have been finished to a higher standard, none have represented better value for money. For what we paid it was excellent. We wanted something for our grown up family with a pool at a reasonable price and this one fitted the bill perfectly. Great level of kit in the property, kitchen utensils, towels, seats, loungers, games, books, outside eating area, BBQ etc and the table tennis went down a treat. Also enjoyed an evening in the elevated bar where we kept dry, enjoyed a drink but were immersed in a late summer storm - spectacular. This is also a great area of France where a day out and evening meal in La Rochelle is a must - in our opinion you need a car at this location. Cognac is also great, with various tours available of the local Chateaux de Cognac distilleries. Julie lives in the village and was on hand to deal with any questions etc - she was also able to give advice on where to visit (useful to have a local contact where the language is not a barrier). Antony also reimbursed our security payment within 2 weeks without the need to be prompted which is not always the case. Overall we had a great time and would absolutely recommend this property as superb value for money - thankyou Antony!
Character and charm
We arrived late on a boiling August Saturday afternoon to find the house spotlessly clean, a fridge stocked with provisions and fresh bread in the kitchen. Over our two week stay we fell in love with the house, the pool and surrounding area is superb and the town of Cognac is only 15 minutes drive away. Thoroughly recommended.
Thank you, it was a pleasure to have you at Thouvenin.
The house was exactly as shown in the pics and description, we were given a lot of useful local information and our holiday was relaxing and enjoyable. Our 9yr old spent virtually the whole week in the pool while we relaxed nearby. The upstairs bar is lovely and we spent the late afternoons and evenings here watching the bats flying round the outside of the house. Nice little welcome pack on arrival and a good local shop meant we didn't have to stray too far afield although Julie (the housekeeper) made some good recommendations for exploring. All in all a very successful holiday and we may well be back again!
The small village of Migron, with its pretty, 11th-century stone church, is perfect for those who want a quite village surrounded by vineyards and sunflower fields, but don't want to be too remote.
Migron has a well-stocked mini-market complete with a tiny coffee bar. Its a 5 minute walk and almost next door is the village bakers. The bakery is exceptional and actually supplies most of the bakery shops in the surrounding area. The shop is simply a counter within the bakery itself. A pizza van with a wood burning oven calls on Monday evenings and Oysters and mussel stalls appear on Saturday morning
The village also has a post office and hairdresser and a vegetable van calls during the week.
The beautiful sandy beaches of Royan are just forty minutes drive away. Also within an hour's drive are Rochefort, Ile d'Oleron, La Rochelle and - just a bit further - the beautiful Ile de Re, dubbed the Cote d'Azur of the Atlantic Coast. The Atlantis waterpark in St Jean d’Angely (20 minutes drive), has water slides, but the biggest and best is Les Antilles at Jonzac. The sea marshes around Rochefort contain a sanctuary which plays home to egrets, storks, warblers and kites.
Up to 25% off Brittany Ferries is available on all bookings
We are surrounded by airports with budget flights to many parts of the UK, including Angouleme (45mins),La Rochelle (1 hour) and Bordeaux (1 hour). The nearest ferry port is St Malo, around 4 hours drive on very good roads, which with a breakfast stop means you can be at the house for lunch. Alternatives include Caen, Roscoff and Cherbourg. The short channel crossings from Dover are possible with a long day's drive. TGV service to Angouleme.
Nearby large villages include Matha (10 minutes drive) and Burie (5 minutes). Attractions nearby include an excellent aquarium at La Rochelle, two waterslide parks and a world class zoo. In Cognac, 20 minutes drive away, there's a chance to visit some of the world-famous distilleries and the beautiful old Roman town of Saintes, also 20 minutes away, has good shopping, good museums, a Roman amphitheatre and two cathedrals. La Rochelle, Rochefort and Bordeaux around an hour away.
Migron and the surrounding area is excellent for cycling - miles and miles of level countryside with virtually traffic-free routes through vineyards, fields, woodland and villages. There's even an otter colony at the edge of the village. Other activities include river trips, antiques markets (large brocantes held in surrounding villages regularly throughout the Summer), visits to chateaux, churches and museums, walking, cycling and birdwatching (74 hectares of lagoon nature reserves in the area). Sport and leisure in the area include golf (18-hole courses in both Cognac and Saintes which are 20 minutes away), horse riding, all types of fishing, tennis (including a court in the village), canoe-kayaking (boats to hire at various places along the Charente in Cognac and Saintes), and plenty of space in and around the village to kick a football. There is a market to go to practically every day of the week, in Saintes, Cognac, Matha, St Jean d'Angely among others, and there are many excellent local restaurants and auberges to suit every budget.
Cognac and Pineau des Charentes - a local aperitif - are available to taste and buy direct from local producers. A nearby village has its own micro brewery with mini-kegs and bottles to take away. Other local specialities include goats cheeses, oysters from the Marennes, mussels, and other wonderful seafood from the Atlantic coast. The best 'local' wine is Bordeaux - most grapes grown here are for Cognac or Pineau - and there are caves (wine co-operatives) in several local towns.