in the midst of a town, in Burgundy
The little town of Nuits-Saint-Georges is on the periphery of what is known in Burgundy as the “Great Wine Route” or “Burgundy’s Champs-Elysées”. Classified by UNESCO in 2019 under its “Climates” entity, the town still exudes all of its authenticity, its charm and its provincial tranquillity, whilst being near to the A6 motorway providing links to Paris, Geneva or Lyon in two hours. The train station, just 5 minutes from the house, provides 20-minute links to Dijon and Beaune. An aerodrome, a 10-minute drive away, is open to civil aircraft. All shops are within easy walking distance and it is a real delight to stroll around Friday’s market, passing through the old town or along the riverside embankments. There is direct access to the vine-growing hillside and to the cycle path as well as to the fitness trail amongst the pine trees and the limestone lawns with “Natura 2000” classification. It is also the start of the Félix-Batier trail going to Dijon through the valleys (52 km long with differences in levels of up to 2,000 m).
Further on, a small door in a thick hornbeam screen opens into a hidden garden. The facade on this side is completely clad in wood. Twelve skylights, set in the roof, interrupt the cascade of small tiles, with their golden-brown geometric motifs. A Japanese pine tree is literally growing out of the roof on the second floor.
Remote-controlled gates, at the entrance to the courtyard leading to the embankments, close the porch between the garage and a house. This property is therefore enclosed on all sides.
The 14th century barn and its history
In the 14th century, ramparts were constructed to protect the small town from all the pillaging that it was experiencing. The square tower, the remains of which are still to be found in the parking courtyard, was a tax office adjoining the ramparts. A stately home and its outbuildings, most probably belonging to a religious order, were constructed to accommodate the many destitute. The barn was used for storing provisions, wood and fodder. The current garden was a part of the old vegetable garden, protected from the cold by the high wall on the north side. The moats were filled in and the ramparts demolished in the 17th century; their vestiges are still to be found in the cellars. The neglected barn managed to charm an architect in just 15 minutes in 2005.
The entrance door on the south side, by the parking courtyard, provides access to two sections. On one side, the professional section and its modern areas, with carpet featuring a pebble motif covering the floor. An office with a French ceiling gives access to another very large, open-plan office, with a stone support pillar, as well as to a small kitchen area and a toilet. On the other side, a French window opens on to the courtyard on the town side. A spiral, iron stairway goes down to the cellars. The main entrance hall houses a guest toilet and a storeroom, leading to the kitchen. It is extended by a hall area with a half-turning, open, hanging stairway going upstairs, a porch with two steps leads directly to the kitchen and its central unit as well as to a lounge. Direct access to the terrace with views of the garden. The floor is covered with large, variegated tiles, walls featuring blocks of Premeaux stone are integrated with rows of brick, knotted beams descend like creepers and walkways are made of wood, stainless steel and zinc. The lounge has a wood-burning stove, its flue rising up beside the exposed stone to the roofing framework of the cathedral ceiling. This bright, open space includes two matching stone archways.
The open, hanging stairway goes up to the first-floor landing. A balcony walkway, looking down on to the lounge, leads to an air-conditioned study, housed in the exposed roofing framework, with a view over the rooftops and the wooded mountain. The landing provides access to three bedrooms, with parquet flooring and cupboards. Opposite, a suite, with a bedroom, a wardrobe, a shower room and a toilet. A toilet and a vast bathroom with a shower. A winding stairway, going up to the second floor, continues to look down on to the lounge below.
On the landing, a creative studio follows the L-shape of the house. A wide, south-facing semi-circular arched window, a west-facing window opening the roof on to a hanging, wooded planter. View over the hills and the woods. A suite with parquet flooring, comprising a bedroom, a shower room, a toilet and a dressing room. On one side the skylights receive the rising sun; on the other, the view takes in the Château-Gris and the terraced vines. A permanent spectacle is provided at night by the illuminated chateau.
The cellars can be reached via a spiral stairway in the professional section. The first vaulted cellar leads to a second, smaller, closed cellar used for laying down wine. The third vaulted cellar is bigger and is used as a conference room. Original, exposed pointed stone walls and floor tiles.
The garage provides access to the little terraced garden via a gravel pathway, edged with stone paving. Stone walls are enhanced with climbing roses. Three steps lead to the lawn, surrounded by hazelnut, fig and cypress trees. A gravel pathway, running parallel to the high stone wall on the north side where climbing vines, kiwis and ivy grow, leads to the wooden terrace extending the lounge and the kitchen outside. On the south side, the pathway, lined with a hornbeam hedge, screens the garden from onlookers. There is a view of the bell-tower of Saint-Denis church.
A remote-controlled, up-and-over garage door opens on to the embankments. A well over a cellar is ideal for DIY and vintage car enthusiasts. Stairways go down to the basement. A door at the end opens on to the garden. A toilet and a machine room, awaiting the installation of a swimming pool. The property also includes two car parking spaces in the enclosed communal courtyard.
This house is designed in keeping with its roofing framework, its stone, its brick and its original lines of structure, merging its past with the present. Space, proportions and the attention given to light immediately create a feeling of well-being and harmony. The living, working and relaxation areas are linked together and residents can easily move from one to the other. Its three facades bestow a unique character, making this an elegant middle-class house for accommodating visitors, a vast, reassuring home for family and friends as well as a wooden house nestling in an enclosed garden for interior living. There is something magical about this place, this vision of an enlightened architect, and it is a delight to be there.
|Land registry surface area||1303 m2|
|Main building surface area||400 m2|
|Outbuilding surface area||82 m2|
|Number of bedrooms||6|
Anne Gros +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.