The monastery, enfolded by high walls and hedges, dates from 1504 and is immaculately restored. The pool shimmers in the sun, the sub-tropical gardens are a haven and the winding road ends at the river. You’re undeniably off the beaten track – but five minutes from a village with a supermarket and, as luck would have it, an artisan pizzeria. The restoration and decoration reflect the talents of Nick and Claudia who live close by and have created a warm Provençal feel across two magnificent wings. There’s a vast two-storey salon with a Flemish tapestry and a minstrels’ gallery, great leather chesterfields to cosy up on, a few oak pews, a stunning stone fireplace. In the kitchen/dining room: a huge table for 12, a few fridges and everything to please a Nigella. Antique beds are topped in soft boutis, bathrooms are luxurious, there are bikes for all ages and logs for the fire; it’s a wonderful all-year retreat. Fix a drink from the poolhouse bar, nod off amid pomegranates and roses, stoke the barbecue.