Lavender Fields, Provence, France
Chateau Viens, Provence, France
Chateau Viens, Provence, France

The review:

Chateau Viens, Provence

A dreamy chateau in Provence, surrounded by rolling fields of lavender.

Sleeping up to 18 guests, this sensational 19th century chateau is the perfect setting for a group getaway or a three-generational holiday. Sitting within 650 acres of bucolic Luberon countryside, the grand, stone-walled chateau presents an utterly picturesque scene of rural Provencal bliss. With a large pool, tennis court, football pitch and boules, you can choose to be active or simply sit back and soak up the views to the mountains, with a glass of the palest pink rosé in hand.

“This peaceful chateau, surrounded by the sounds of nature, is big enough for a large family gathering, with bedrooms spread out across the chateau, farm and cottages.”

Things to do

With a maid and handy man on-site every day, you’ll have plenty of time to relax. The large pool with stunning views, shaded al fresco dining and kitchen area and adjoining games room will be the main lure, but the expansive grounds and surrounding forests can also be explored by foot or by bike. Within a few minutes of Chateau Vien are the medieval villages of the Luberon Valley, while an hour’s drive will bring you to the hallowed town of Avignon, where the Pope sought refuge in the 14th century. Further afield, Saint Tropez and Monaco are a short helicopter flight away.

The lavender in the Luberon blooms from around the last week of June to the beginning of August when it’s harvested. Arrive early to beat the crowds and get that classic shot in front of Senanque Abbey near Gordes.

Sleeping

Scattered throughout the chateau and its outbuildings are several flexible configurations for sleeping. The chateau itself has five bedrooms over two floors, and at the ‘farm’ a further two bedrooms with living room and kitchen are found – ideally suiting a small family unit.

Elsewhere, a freestanding cottage works well for a couple with a baby, and an apartment has three bedrooms with extra space for staff such as a nanny or security guard. The décor throughout is elegant with original stone flagged floors, ornate chateau-style furniture with fresh, contemporary finishes.

Food & drink

Here in the markets of the Luberon Valley, it’s easy to get your hands on fresh local produce like truffles, goat’s cheese and salami, and the bakeries of nearby villages Vien and Rustral are well-stocked with delicious bread and pastries. However, you might like us to arrange a chef for you, to ease the strain of a big gathering.

We can fly in a favoured chef for a special dinner, or arrange a cook to prepare day-to-day lunches and BBQs that stretch long into the night. Wine-lovers will find nearby vineyards full of southern Rhone’s crisp whites, light rosés and elegant reds – enjoy touring the cellars before bringing back your favourite to drink at the chateau.

What stands out

Chateau Vien really stands out for its tranquil beauty and the huge amount of space it affords its visitors. There are plenty of bedrooms, spread out over the entire property, so everyone from grandmothers to tiny tots can enjoy themselves. Groups can then come together for family fun at the pool or for fabulous communal meals.

Best for

For a large family or group of friends, Chateau Vien makes a truly fantastic French holiday and would work wonderfully for a special occasion gathering or landmark birthday. And with the addition of nannies, chefs, maids, security guards and drivers, this can be a holiday where you really switch off.

The Verdict

An area made famous by A Year in Provence is as gorgeous today as it was when Peter Mayle discovered it in the Eighties, with its rolling lavender fields, abundance of delicious produce and world-class wines. Now you can have a slice of its rural beauty with your own chateau. Big enough to fill with masses of friends or family, Chateau Vien makes a most memorable holiday.

Sarah Ward Hedges

Personal Travel Designer

01488 689700 Read Sarah’s profile

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