Vacation rentals in France (farms, cottages, gites, apartments)
Review 5627: Owner, Vaison-la-Romaine condo (#387624)
2bed/2.5bath apartment in Vaison-la-Romaine, Provence
April, 2013, One week
This lovely condo is in the town of Vaison-la-Romaine, in a building which opens onto a walkway running alongside the town's Roman ruins. It is one of two lovingly restored (by owner) condos, on the top floor of the building, with the owners living in the condo on the second floor. Although it is in a row of houses, it felt very private.
We could easily walk to anything we needed. The town's main square is just a couple streets away, where there are several restaurants and a well stocked grocery store. Every Tuesday, there's a huge market in town, just around the corner from the condo. There is no private parking space, but the town has many free public parking lots, just a short walk away. We felt safe parking our rental car in a lot by the cathedral.
This is an old building, but recently restored and in excellent shape. On occasion we could hear muffled sounds from the nearby movie theater, say if there was a really loud piece of music in the soundtrack (the owners apologized several times but honestly, we barely noticed it and weren't at all bothered by it.) The condo can be reached from the ground floor by spiral staircase or elevator, so is completely accessible. There is free WiFi provided.
The condo has a large outdoor terrace, with a comfortable sitting area, as well as a covered table and chairs. It has walls so is very private.
The condo is furnished with authentic, Provencal walnut antiques. There are several cushioned armchairs plus a sofa in the living room. Table for six in the dining room. Lots of surface area (shelves, end tables, etc.) on which to set down books and cameras and other sundry possessions. Loads of closet space. There is a working fireplace in the main area, as well as air conditioning. There is a washing machine in a storage room off the kitchen. The condo is spotlessly maintained.
The two bedrooms are both as bright and spacious as the rest of the condo. There was a Queen sized bed in each, with night tables on either side. In each is also a chair, a wardrobe and a double closet with shelves as well as hanging rods. One bedroom has TV with cable. Both have en-suite Italian tiled bathrooms with sink, toilet and a fantastic walk-in shower. There is also a half bath for guests, off the main hallway. All linens are provided.
Fabulously well equipped kitchen, with new appliances including dishwasher, espresso machine, microwave, oven, propane cook-top, refrigerator and freezer. All manner of utensils and a few basic supplies are provided to get you started. The owners also gave us a welcoming gift of a bottle of wine, fresh strawberries and a bottle of homemade jam.
Problems or Bonuses
The surprise was discovering this place exceeded our expectations. It sounds stunning from the VRBO listing, and it really is all that and more! Imagine waking up every morning and looking out the window at Roman ruins ... breathtaking.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
The owners, Jean-Claude and Colette, are the most wonderful hosts! Jean-Claude speaks a little English, Colette none. I speak a little French (and understand a little more), so we managed fine. It might harder for someone with no French at all, but they are both so kind, and willing to communicate with gestures and guesses, so I wouldn't let language hold you back if you're interested in staying here!
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
I would stay again in a heartbeat! And give an unqualified recommendation to anyone. If my best friend comes here to stay (as she should someday), she better bring me with her!
Things to do in this area
We spent a couple days wandering around the town itself, especially loving the medieval hill top area of town across the river. The old Norman cathedral is gorgeous. (We didn't go into the Roman ruins site because we had such a great view from our windows!)
There were many highly recommended restaurants in nearby towns, but we didn't check any of them out, mostly because I didn't want to have to drive home after supper. We thoroughly enjoyed two meals at Chez Rina, a short walk from our condo, and I don't recall the names of the other places we ate. (I'm not a foodie, so usually leave restaurant recommendations to others with more discriminating tastes.)
When it comes to exploring, the possibilities are endless ... there are several Côtes du Rhône wine roads, endless small villages, scenic drives through the mountains. Day-trips can include the Pont du Gard, Avignon, Orange (huge Roman amphitheater), well known villages to the south such as Roussillon or Gordes.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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