“Impressionist artist, lived in Switzerland & France.”
Le Bijou is an old merchant's house built in the 15th century. It has been fully restored and filled with historic character. Set on four floors with two bedrooms, it is ideal for up to four guests. The house is decorated in traditional style with beautiful French fabrics and many antiques, and features a covered terrace facing southwest with its own kitchen facility.
A stone spiral staircase connects the floors. On the ground floor, the front door opens from the street into the original stone hallway and then the kitchen/living/dining area under its original vaulted stone ceiling.
The kitchen has all modern equipment necessary for a self catering holiday. The dining table seats six. A television and free wireless internet access are included.
On the next level up from the kitchen is the spacious double bedroom, with a sofa, closet and bathroom with shower. Upstairs again is the twin bedroom, with a pair of antique fruitwood beds and its own bathroom with a bathtub and shower.
On the top level is a bright covered terrace facing southwest. It contains a complete open-air kitchen with a gas barbecue, a sink, a fridge, servingware and a clothes washer. A dining table looks southwest over red tile roofs to distant wooded hills and sunsets.
Le Bijou is located in a a quiet neighborhood of old, narrow streets. Montagnac is a very safe town, and the inhabitants are friendly and welcoming.
The owners have created a guide book for guests, with many superb sites within less than two hours of Montagnac. It includes descriptions, maps, directions, and some restaurants as well. These are probably among the most memorable, historic and beautiful sites in the Languedoc–Roussillon.
Medieval Montagnac enjoys warm, sunny Mediterranean weather, with rolling vineyards on the nearby hillsides. The town's rich heritage includes its 13th century church, and the many houses built by rich merchants in the 14th and 15th centuries (such as Le Bijou).
Among the good restaurants in Montagnac: BK, run by a young couple, which serves excellent fresh cuisine; Le Jardin d’Hélena has an outside terrace and is run by a typically French husband/wife team, offering simple but good, fresh local and regional French country cooking; Brasserie des Sports, also run by a young couple, is very good for lunch- be sure to order the "formule" special of the day. Very close to it is an excellent bakery. All are within a three minute walk.
A nearby Spar grocery carries everyday food and supplies. For an early morning coffee and pastry, try the café across the street. Be sure to go to the open market on the esplanade on Friday morning.
This is the perfect pied-à-terre for a vacation of relaxing and site-seeing. Many superb sites to explore are within a 15 to 90 minute drive. This includes many of “les Plus Beaux Villages de France” (the most beautiful villages in France), and many UNESCO world heritage sites.
Among the places to see are the medieval citadel of Carcassonne, the superb medieval stone villages of Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert, the ancient city walls of Aigues-Mortes, the world famous Roquefort Caves, the many sheep and goat cheese artisans based near there, the town of Bouzigues, which is famous for delicious oysters and other seafood, and the Mediterranean harbor towns of Mèze, Marseillan, Sète and Cap d’Agde. All have wonderful restaurants.
The beaches of the Mediterranean are within 20 to 30 minutes' drive. The town of Pézenas is one of France's famous centres for antique dealers and offers many good restaurants too. Visit the many regional wineries that offer free tastings, and the dozens of weekly open markets. The owners have prepared a guidebook containing lots of information on places to eat and visit.