The house is rock solid, with hefty surrounding walls, yet it is still elegant in its light-brown stone. It’s also, in spite of its grandness and history, a relaxed house with outside spaces to suit all: a dining terrace under a wide shady tree, a barbecue to the side, a nicely-hidden pool, paths to stroll along past the lily pond and secret sitting corners. Inside there are great open fireplaces, high ceilings, two sitting rooms and billiards or board games instead of telly.
Up a stone spiral staircase are large bedrooms with views over garden or terrace, some with additional single beds. Three are up in the attic, and all but one have room for an armchair or two. The kitchen has a 6-burner cooker and you can borrow Yolande, the owners’ cook to rustle up good traditional French food.
There’s a ping pong table, a pétanque pitch, an orangery for lunch on hot days and you can use the village tennis court at no charge.