|Minimum Stay||7 - 14 nights|
With exposed wooden beams and stonework throughout, Le Cerisier has been sympathetically converted to retain its original charm whilst incorporating the premium quality fixtures and fittings to give it a luxury feel. It has a conventional layout on the ground floor with a separate living room, with HD TV receiving UK FreeSat programmes, and an adjacent kitchen/diner. The kitchen retains original features, including the bread oven, and is extremely well equipped with Bosch appliances throughout, including fridge/freezer, oven, microwave, ceramic hob, washing machine and dishwasher.
Upstairs, both bedrooms are en-suite with the King size master bedroom having a sumptuous en-suite shower room with large (120cm x 80cm) shower and twin wash hand basins and the twin room benefiting from an en-suite bathroom with in-bath shower. Both bedrooms have large south facing windows with far-reaching views over the countryside beyond. Outside, the terrace has an extendable sun-shade and Gas BBQ.
Situated in the eastern Charente, close to the Dordogne and Limousin borders, the property is situated 15 mins east of La Rochefoucauld and 20 mins SW of Rochechouart - each town boasting a stunning, but strikingly different, chateau. The lakes of the high Charente, with beaches, cycling and walking trails are an easy 15 minute drive away and there are numerous weekly local markets in the nearby towns and villages. To the west, the world-renowned town of Cognac is less than an hour away and to the east the famous city of Limoges can be reached in a similar time. For the more adventurous, the historic city of La Rochelle is less than two hours away, as are the long and sweeping beaches of the Bay of Biscay. Recently converted from a haybarn, The Gites occupy an elevated position and are south facing, meaning day-long sunshine, with stunning views over the Charente countryside! Both Gites have been furnished to the highest standards and both benefit form HD UK satellite TV. The very large garden in front of The Gites is mostly laid to grass with ample room for games - mini football goals, a volleyball/badminton net, croquet lawn and Boules piste are provided. There is also a small, recently planted orchard with a variety of fruit trees. To the west side of the property is the large (13m x 6m) heated swimming pool which is overlooked by the shady Summer Terrace. The Summer Terrace is equipped with tables, chairs, hammock, sofa, i-pod docking station, dart board, Table Football table and fridge and is the ideal place for parents to relax whist still being able to supervise their children in the pool. Next to the Summer Terrace is a dedicated Table Tennis area. The well equipped gym and four-person sauna can also be found close by.
The owners of 'The Gites at Le Tilleul', Les and Sara Henderson moved to France in 2010 with their two children Georgia and Angus. Les had been a military helicopter pilot and fixed-wing flying instructor prior to completing eight years as a Commercial airline pilot and Sara, although a qualified Primary School teacher, had also been a Royal Navy Air Traffic Control Officer. After leaving the Services they successfully started-up and ran the European operation for a Canadian company, which manufactured and sold soft leather baby shoes, from their home in South Wales from 2001 to 2010. During this time they successfully renovated a small barn in the grounds of their old farmhouse, which they subsequently rented out as a 'holiday let', and the idea of pursuing this idea on a slightly larger scale ultimately led to the move to France in 2010.
Les Henderson purchased this barn in 2010
We wanted somewhere which was tranquil and had lots of space. We also wanted the arrangement of the buildings to be such that both ourselves and our guests could enjoy the property without compromising the privacy of either party - we wanted to be available for our guests if they needed help or advice but at the same time, to be discreet. We wanted our guests to feel completely at home and not to feel that they were restricted by the fact that we (the owners) were nearby. I'm glad to say that from the feedback from our previous guests, we have achieved our aim!
The views here are stunning! The property is south facing which means that in summer the sun shines on us all day long! In short, it is an idyllic setting! The summer days are long and sultry and the pool is a joy to dive into to cool off. At Le Tilleul, the amenities are such that some of our guests only go out to buy groceries! Their time is spent relaxing by the pool, spending quality time with their children playing games in the Summer Terrace, or in the wide open spaces of the garden.
Others take the opportunity to explore the surrounding countryside or the many and varied activities which are available nearby, returning in the afternoon for some pool time and a relaxing evening BBQ! Whether it's French culture or fun activities you're seeking - Le Tilleul provides it all and there's something here for everyone!
As soon as we arrived, Les and Sara made us feel so welcome. We have stayed in numerous gites over the past 15 years but this was the most luxurious, spotless gite we have been in. The welcome basket was delightful. The gite has everything you need for a perfect holiday. Beautifully furnished, spacious and clean. As for the amazing huge pool, gym, boule, darts, table football, volleyball, football, table tennis plus a lovely play area, you will never hear your children say that they are bored. Les and Sara have thought of everything, even a large fridge/freezer near to the pool area. When we suggested each day to our teenage daughters that we could visit a market, go canoeing or go karting nearby they both said they would prefer to stay at the gite and enjoy the activities there. If you are looking for a relaxing peaceful setting, with beautiful views, in a fabulous gite then this has to be your top choice. You will not be disappointed. Thank you Les and Sara for the best holiday we have had. We hope to return again soon.
We stayed in Le Pommier Gite, with young children. The accommodation was great - clean, modern - and having the living area upstairs with a balcony really worked well with the kids (you knew where they were!).
Other facilities also great - everything you could think of is there, pool, trampoline, playground, table tennis, gym, table football. What more to say?!... we'd be happy to return, and probably will...
(NB: Owners Direct - not appreciated that you have to create an account just to post a review!)
My husband and I with our two daughters, aged 16 and 18, have just returned from a wonderful stay at Le Cerisier.
Having seen the website photos we knew the gite had been finished to a high standard but the reality exceeded our expectations. Everything has been planned to provide a five star experience, from the luxurious bathrooms, the comfortable beds and sofas, excellent wifi and the wonderful electric awning on our patio to Sara’s thoughtful welcome pack, complete with eggs from her own chickens.
Outside the gite itself the same high standards continue. The pool is enormous and spotless. We often had it all to ourselves. The area around it well equipped with sun lounges and awnings. The summer terrace, with its hammock, fridge freezer and dining table was a welcome shady spot when the temperatures were high, which they were for all of our stay! The garden, which takes up several acres, is a joy. It has an enormous cedar tree, complete with two resident owls, beds of lavender, which smell delightful in the evening and it slopes down to a field of waving corn and poppies.
Les and Sara are the perfect hosts. They are friendly and good humoured and happy to suggest outings and restaurants if you wish but quietly discreet if you do not.
However what we loved the most and which no photo can capture is the atmosphere at Le Cerisier. The peace and tranquillity creeps up on you so that after a few days you would happily stay there forever.
Unfortunately we only had a week in this lovely spot but we certainly hope to return.
Special interest holidays:
Large private fishing lake nearby (Domaine de le drole)
Freshwater Beach - 10 mins drive
Coastal Beach (Bay of Biscay) - 1hr 50 mins drive
Limoges Airport - 50 mins
Bordeaux Airport - 70 mins
La Rochelle Airport - 2hrs
Bergerac Airport - 2hrs 10 mins
Channel Ports - 5.5 hrs (St Malo) to 8hrs (Calais)
Le Lindois - 1.5km
Montemboeuf - 4km
Montbron - 10 km
La Rochefoucauld - 15km
Rochechouart - 25km
Angouleme - 40 km
Cognac - 90km
Limoges - 90km
There is a good selection of local restaurants, shops and supermarkets nearby. All the local towns and some of the villages have a weekly market and markets in the larger towns (e.g. Angouleme) run all week long. There are numerous lakes in the area with facilities for pic-nics, swimming and fishing. The major cognac producers offer free tours of their facilities, as do some of the smaller (and perhaps more interesting) Cognac houses.
For the more energetic, the Tree-Top Aventure Parc is only a 10 minute drive away and this offers various courses - dependent of ability and size - built into a small forest close to the Lakes of the High Charente. There is also a bungee jumping tower which operates at specific times.
Located at Rumazieres, the VeloRail uses a stretch of railway track which is no longer needed for trains, to carry small pedal-powered 'bicycle cars'. These can carry up to 5 people and run from Rumazieres to Manot and back - good fun and great exercise!
The charming town of Brantome is less than an hours drive away into the Dordogne and offers fine cafes/restaurants and the chance to kayak on the river Dronne, which forms a loop around the town.