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The owner of the premises, Chantal Comte, selects the finest reserves French Antilles rums that she gleans, like bees foraging, in the best cellars of the islands. In her Atelier du Rhum, boutique, and "rumothèque" which presents and sells all of her vintages, she organizes and leads free two-hour themed tasting workshops one Saturday per month on reservation at: 04 66 70 10 55. Among the themes of these workshops: • "Rum and chocolate, an alliance of terroirs" around a tasting of rum and chocolate; • “Rum and cheese”; • “Mojito, ti punch and caipirinha” to become an expert in cocktails; • Mano a mano: Rum / Whiskey on smoked fish; The tasting is an inner journey, a very intimate moment, a story of personal emotions, a return to childhood, to this reptilian memory where perfumes are engraved to form our taste.
So close to Nîmes and yet so far from the hustle and bustle of the city, this place is the perfect escape. Amidst plantations of fruit trees, there is more to it than meets the eye. The property is a bold architectural statement, resolutely modern yet perfectly in tune with the surrounding landscape. Firmly turned towards the light of the south, the villa stretches round in a long curve bordered by bay windows that seem determined to take in all of the garden. White concrete and yellow stone come together to form the overall structure which appears surprisingly light. This mystifying miracle was borne from the meeting of two dreams, that of a woman focused on the future and that of a sculptor turned architect with a love for long forgotten buildings. Ever present, this meeting of minds adorns the walls, supports the beams and accompanies the layout of the rooms which follow one another in a long, unobstructed ambulatory. Armand Pellier's creative genius is expressed here down to the smallest detail, producing a living environment of great softness, comfort and peace for both body and soul.
My family settled in the region in the 1950s when the opening of the Bas-Rhône canal supplied this landscape of scrubland and vineyards with water. Suddenly it was tipped to become the French California. A land of orchards filled with peaches, cherries, apricots and apples in which my father, Guy Serres, was the first to invest when he bought the Domaine du Château de la Tuilerie. My husband later took over the management of the estate and I worked as the winegrower for 35 years. My children and my grandchildren were born here. Four generations have left their mark on these lands.
The Vents de Sable villa is a contemporary house, built between 1985 and 1986 by architect Armand Pellier who remains an icon amongst architects around the world. He was a man of great culture, meetings with him on site were a real lesson in history. He skilfully married glass with stone from the Roman quarry at Vers-Pont-du-Gard to take advantage of the beautiful Provencal light. This house, built in a semi-circle, is an incredible technical feat. The label “Remarkable Contemporary Architecture” has just been awarded to it by the Ministry of Culture.The Villa Vents de Sable, a building already labeled “20th Century Culturel Heritage” in 2011 was chosen from among the six groups selected in the Occitan region to be part of the second campaign to raise awareness of this contemporary architecture.
After the death of my father in 1983, my mother did not wish to continue living at the chateau. As such, we started the construction of this single-storey, comfortable, south-facing house in a park full of trees and roses with the help of Armand Pellier. She lived here happily until her 100th birthday!
It is a gentle home that radiates peace, beauty and comfort. The house and the one-hectare park are at the heart of the estate which is home to 360 hectares of orchards for running or cycling among the flowers and fruits. It is absolute luxury and the perfect retreat for all those looking to reflect and meditate in private. The sun-drenched terraces, the swimming pool and the park are all spots where guests can enjoy lunches outside, naps under the trees, and evenings of putting the world to rights. It is a secret address that is only passed on by word of mouth.
Five hundred metres away is the Atelier du Rhum which offers guided tasting sessions to discover the treasures of the Antilles to all our guests. The Caveau de Dégustation du Château de la Tuilerie is great for discovering our wines and understanding the traditional method. The puff pastry bread from the village bakery in Garons is delightful. MMM, La Maison du Mieux Manger in Caissargues serves the best Italian specialties. The Nîmes-Campagne golf club is open all year round and offers reduced rates to our guests. Our favourite walk is in Camargue, at the end of the day you can stroll along the edge of the Etang du Vaccarès where the flamingos come to rest on the lake dappled with the last rays of the sun.