a listed, 18th century “Malouinière”, spanning approx. 300 m², with all its outbuildings
Near to Saint-Malo, shops and amenities, just a stone’s throw from the river Rance and the beaches surrounding “Corsair City”. 65 km from Rennes and 55 minutes away via the train.
Behind the outbuildings, the farmyard with its cowshed, is also enclosed by walls. It includes the dovecote. An opening leads beyond the walls to a carpark, a little wood and a horse pool surrounded by lawns.
A building inside the walls, used as a bakery and a laundry, stands in the middle of the wooded garden, with square vegetable patches and an orchard. The immense glazed greenhouse adjoins a wall not far from the “Malouinière” and twin pavilions take up the corners at the end of the parklands.
“Malouinières” belong to the French 18th century architectural inventory. Their numbers grew during a very short time period courtesy of the wealth accumulated by St Malô’s merchants and ship owners. Owners of mansion houses in the old town, their country houses, equally sober in size, made it possible to receive guests and to find privacy.
These havens of short-lived holidays are discreetly laid out and enclosed by high walls. The essential garden comes with square vegetable patches and an orchard, a cowshed and a farmyard. Family-run mixed farming was the main means of providing supplies within the perimeter walls of Saint-Malo. As well as the dovecote, the postal system of the times. Today,112 “Malouinières” have been identified by the French Historic Monument Association.
This “Malouinière” dates from 1720. The walls are made of lime-rendered, local shale stone blocks. Chausey granite was used for fundamental features in order to enhance the architectural composition, notably on the south facade, such as the horizontal string course separating the levels, the rusticated masonry dressed stone quoins and the roof cornice.
The main building is flanked by two wings, the roof dormers are aligned directly above the openings, the hip slate roof is steep (constructed by marine carpenters). It features tall, buttress chimney stacks and finials at the ridge ends.
The main building comprises two reception rooms which can be accessed via four sets of French windows on either side of the house. Both have wide strip pattern oak wood parquet flooring. Four corner doors are topped with sculpted panels. The decoration in the lounge is more sophisticated. The walls are panelled and painted. Cornices surround the coffered ceiling. The fireplace is made of a dark-coloured marble, whilst that in the dining room is made of granite.
In the wings, a library and a kitchen are preceded by a stairway leading upstairs and to the attic space.
All the rooms have wide strip pattern oak wood parquet flooring. The wooden stairway goes up to a landing providing access to two bedrooms. One overlooks the courtyard, the other looks out of the main facade. The latter, with its panelled walls and its wooden fireplace, closed off with panels, provides access through a dressing room to the master bedroom. The fireplace is made of marble, the cupboards built into the wall still have their original fixtures and fittings and it is illuminated by two wide openings on each facade. A doorway leads to a stairway which goes down to an intermediate landing where there is a fourth bedroom and a bathroom, with a toilet. The kitchen is at the bottom of the stairs.
This level was recently converted into a self-contained flat. It comprises a living room, with an open-plan kitchen, which provides access to two bedrooms and a shower room.
The cowshed transformed into a house
Constructed around 1820 and having fallen into disuse, this old cowshed was rehabilitated as of 1975 and turned into a small family home. It is built of shale stone blocks and is topped with a hip slate roof. It stands on one side of the farmyard, from which it is separated by a hedge. Two predominantly glazed extensions, added to this facade, have been bordered by a terrace, paved with wide flagstones. The principle is the same on the other side. The extensions flank an opening, topped with a canopy, that leads beyond the perimeter walls to the lawn surrounding a horse pool. And lastly, a doorway in the living room opens directly into the glazed greenhouse intended for cacti.
The main room, with its central open-plan kitchen, extends into an extension. The walls are whitewashed and the floor paved with wide flagstones. An old, low door leads to a lean-to housed in an extension. The two other extensions are in use as a bedroom and a shower room.
A stone stairway goes up to a wide surface area, with a sloping ceiling, closed by glazed doors. Further on, a mezzanine looks down on to the living room.
The old outbuildings
These date from 1755. Contrary to the sober, military architecture of the “Malouinières”, the architectural composition of the outbuildings reveals a desire to play with the lack of distance from the courtyard using trompe-l’œil and perspective effects.
Originally a shed for horse-drawn carriages, a stable, a cellar used for storing wine and food, as well as a press-house (wine was made here at the time). The upstairs comprised a hayloft, a dovecote, and two bedrooms for seasonal workers.
Today, these outbuildings accommodate a large house.
Four adjoining rooms take up this level. Their floors are paved with wide contemporary stone tiles. The walls are lined with wide strips of wood, decorated with paintings or feature exposed quarry stone blocks. An open-plan kitchen has been included in the first room, illuminated via a wide window.
The wooden stairway goes up to a hall area. A bathroom and a bedroom are opposite a corridor which leads to two more bedrooms. Along this corridor, wooden panels conceal what was the farmhand’s sleeping area with its floor access to the stables.
The bakery, the laundry and the well
These were restored to their original state in 1998 in accordance with pre-war photographs. The old laundry houses a central well, dated 1746. The other section of the building comprises a fireplace and a bread oven on the ground floor. A stairway goes up to a small bedroom and a storage room where bundles of wood were kept.
The twin pavilions
These were built in 1756. One of them was used as a small stable for a donkey (useful for working in the garden). Upstairs, a hayloft can be reached via a terrace. The second houses an oratory.
The glazed greenhouse for rare cacti
This was built in the 19th century. 26 m long and more than 5 m wide as well as high, it houses more than 500 species of cacti and succulents from all the tropical countries. Some specimens are from those brought back to France by a commodore around 1820. Others are cuttings of cuttings which were brought back in the first half of the 19th century by St Malô captains and ship owners.
The parklands, the vegetable patches and the orchard
The south facade of the “Malouinière” is bordered by French formal parterres. Then, square vegetable patches are laid out next to the orchard through to the end of the parklands as the original function of the 18th century garden has been restored.
The horse pool
This was constructed in 1734. It was originally a watering place-wash-house which was used by the entire village and surrounding farms. It is outside of the property. Semi-circular in shape, it is completely paved and slopes down to a depth of 2.50 m. It is fed by drainage from the garden and a source that does not exceed a temperature of 11°.
Portholes for “playing at corsairs”
This is a most unusual and, above all, unique building. A granite, roofless construction with a very particular shape. It is very probably a stone boat so that the ship owner’s children could become familiar with or even practice operating or at the very least get used to the surroundings of the bridge of a ship with portholes and a little helm. Constructed so that the children of the house could “play at corsairs”.
The corsairs’ way of life fashioned this property. This “house of leisure” (as the “Malouinières” were called) is like a haven of peace when compared to “Corsair City”. Within its walls, the memory is so vivid that it is as if time has stood still. Its traces remain however buried in the ground, in archives and in stone. These Gentlemen of Saint-Malo, their courage and their exploits on the high seas are not forgotten. Such a residence was the complement essential to their way of life. Secret and protective, warm and comfortable, refined and relaxing. Just a stone’s throw from Saint-Malô’s perimeter walls, it does not appear to have been touched by modern-day life.
|Land registry surface area||14005 m2|
|Main building surface area||278 m2|
|Outbuilding surface area||262 m2|
|Number of bedrooms||5|
Béatrice Viel +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.