just 30 minutes from Avignon, to the north of Uzès
This plains castle stands on the outskirts of a village in the south-east of France, heavily marked by the Romans in the past and now by the vine-growing activity. Not far from the river Rhône, it is concealed amongst its verdant surroundings. It is nevertheless easily reached via the main communication routes. Its unspoilt setting, free of contemporary nuisances guarantees absolute peace and quiet. Avignon (TGV train station) is 30 minutes away, whilst the many delights of the Provencal side of the French department of Gard are to be found locally (Uzès, Cèze Valley), extending northwards into the French department of Ardèche and westwards towards the Cévennes mountains.
This castle still has a 12th century tower, featuring impressive arrow-loops, on the north-west corner. Two other towers (including a dovecote) flank the east and south-east corners of the three buildings spanning two levels above the ground floor. These buildings are laid out around a vast, main courtyard, closed on the south side by a high wall, featuring a monumental door with vermiculated, rustic masonry framing. The castle’s old wall-walk has now been transformed into a promenade alongside the moats. A stone culvert has replaced the old drawbridge, the bases for the two piers of which still remain. Beyond the moats, rows of plane trees, hundreds of years old, encircle the castle, set between the plain and the surrounding woods. The sober exterior of the buildings featuring mullioned and several later segmental arched windows is hardly brought into question by the richly sculpted framing of the doors in the central building and the chapel. Saved from ruin in 1978 and fully classified as a French Historic Monument, this castle underwent a vast restoration project at the beginning of the 2000’s which led to its division into a co-owned property, with some ten flats combining modern day home comforts, whilst totally respecting its heritage.
Two French windows provide access from the main courtyard to this flat which takes up the ground floor of the castle’s east wing. It comprises five rooms, all the openings of which face east. They all open out on to a vast private terrace, bordering the water-filled moats.
The first door providing access from the courtyard entrance portico opens into a spacious room currently in use as a living room, with an open-plan kitchen. This room is widely illuminated via a window and two French windows, facing east and west. It provides access on the south side to a barrel-vaulted room, with a shower room, which is laid out on the site of the former sacristy of the neighbouring chapel. A long vestibule, continuing alongside the west wall and leading to the main section of the castle, provides access to three bedrooms, with shower rooms and separate toilets. Two of them have French windows which open out on to the terrace and the moats on the east side. The third is illuminated via a west-facing French window, opening on to the end of the main courtyard.
Numerous period features contribute to the wealth of the premises, such as outstanding, early 18th century decorative plasterwork as well as an elegant and discreet, finely sculpted, stone water fountain. Recent terracotta floor tiles blend soberly with the contemporary conversion works that now divide the areas once used for reception purposes.
The parklands, the communal areas and the swimming pool
The chateau’s setting is particularly unspoilt, nestling in the middle of hectares of woods and meadows that once constituted its parklands, of which the co-owned property still includes the castle’s immediately surroundings. A second bridge spans the moat on the north-east side of the castle. It provides access to the section of the parklands housing a 20x10 m swimming pool as well as a changing room, a bicycle shed and a wide sun-terrace. The owning French SCI (non-trading property company) takes care of its maintenance.
To the south of the castle, a carparking area (with two spaces belonging to this flat) has been wisely set up out of sight of the historic monument.
This flat will appeal to history and heritage enthusiasts seeking a pied-à-terre or a main residence in an exceptional setting without having to bear all the costs. Everything has been done such that the pleasure of the eyes is completely satisfied right down to the smallest detail and that the tranquillity of the premises is not disturbed by the fish in the moats or by the air rustling through the foliage. Time appears to stand still and encourage the taking of naps or contemplation sheltered from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The proximity of heritage meccas and cultural centres will also delight those keen on festivals, whilst the natural surroundings can but invite residents to explore this rich land on foot.
|Land registry surface area||12342 m2|
|Number of bedrooms||4|
Ménélik Plojoux +33 1 42 84 80 85
NB: The above information is not only the result of our visit to the property; it is also based on information provided by the current owner. It is by no means comprehensive or strictly accurate especially where surface areas and construction dates are concerned. We cannot, therefore, be held liable for any misrepresentation.