Vacation rentals in France (farms, cottages, gites, apartments)
Review 3035: Gîtes de France, Pleumeur-Bodou (#120421)
4bed/2bath near Tregastel Plage, Brittany
September 2004, 1 week
This may be obscure, but we loved it. The Cote De Granite Rose (Pink Granite Coast) is a popular vacation destination for the French, but not for many Americans. We went there to see Neolithic monuments (menhirs and tombs) and loved the local cuisine, scenery and fellow tourists.
This house is a modern "beach house." It's on a small lane with a dozen or so similar vacation homes, right on a bay that opens onto the Channel, which at this point is wide enough to be ocean. We picked it because the web site says we would "be under the spell of this house with its bottom in the water." Who could resist? The house itself is bright, modern, has a marvelous big shower stall with multiple shower heads on the ground floor. Good washer dryer.
It's a country location, in the sense of not being in town, but modern country, in the sense of vacation territory. Seaside tourist towns abound along this coast, but none of them are hideous tacky. And all have great restaurants.
One can walk along the Sentier Douanier (which ran along the bottom edge of our yard) to a nearby town, but that wasn't exactly convenient. You'd definitely need to drive a few minutes to shop for house groceries.
This is a modern beach vacation house. Probably nicer than any we've stayed in here on the East Coast U.S. We were there late in the season and more or less had the lane to ourselves. In high summer you'd hear some folks around, but not in late September. It has kitchen, great room and one en suite bedroom downstairs; 3 bedrooms one bath up. All very clean, up to date appliances and plenty of hot water for four. Stone floors, lots of wood, big bookcase full of books, good size TV we watched for an hour or so all told. Wonderful views out onto the little bay and the Channel.
You can view the house directly: Pleumeur-Bodou.
Long sloping yard down to the Sentier Douanier and water's edge. In high summer you'd meet the neighbors, but wouldn't sit cheek to jowl with them. Plantings and a bit of landscaping, but this is salty beach country.
Everything about the house was comfortable, clean and in good repair. We four were very happy there. It might get a bit crowded in the kitchen if you tried to cook with more than four. But then, designate a kitchen crew and the rest sprawl around on the big sofa and easy chairs, or sit at the large dining table poring over maps and guidebooks.
The bedrooms were very nice. One of the things I liked best was the downstairs bathroom. It had a huge shower stall with multiple shower heads. Much nicer than our somewhat "adequate" bathroom at home!
The kitchen was up to snuff for a vacation rental. Full stove with oven, dishwasher, cooking equipment. As with any rental, the pots, pans, knives, bowls and so forth were a mixed bag, but perfectly adequate. We didn't, but we could have, cooked entirely to my satisfaction. (I'm the cook.) But I'm also accustomed to beach rentals, and am willing to cut some small slack. It certainly was a well equipped as any rental we've had, and better than many.
Problems or Bonuses
We were very pleasantly surprised at how nice the house was for €700 for the week. A steal. But, this is not a happening place. It would be great for families; so long as you're not trying to satisfy teens who MUST be in a crowd!
Agency and Representatives (and price)
We booked through Gites de France. That's not easy: All in French, and some of the paperwork relating to having insurance was difficult to figure out. But we did it.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
In the sense of "would we stay in a similar rental?" We certainly would. In the sense of "would we actually return to this rental?" probably not, but only because there are so many places we'd like to go! We'd recommend this rental to anyone wanting a vacation, with the only qualification being that it's a seaside vacation, not high art cultural travel.
Things to do in this area
We went to the Cote De Granite Rose primarily to see the Neolithic monuments in the area. Weird, yeah, but that's us! (This trip comprised several days in Wiltshire: Stonehenge and the like; a week in Carnac for the Neolithic stones there, and a week on the Cote De Granite Rose.) We also traveled around seeing the marvelous coastal scenery and dining on seafood, gallettes and crepes with the excellent Breton cider.
The Cote De Granite Rose isn't a place one visits to DO anything, really, just to be at the seaside, enjoy the scenery and relax. You won't be alone, or off the beaten path. It might be over run in August. But it's beautiful, and the food is great!
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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