A vintage wine and culture destination with delicious tastings, grand architecture, gourmet restaurants and a glorious coastline.
Recommended place to stay:
Le Relais de Franc Mayne
Saint-Emilion, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France|www.chateaufrancmayne.com|
Official star rating:
A short drive – or long walk – through the vines from the historic town of Saint-Emilion, this classic 16th-century manor house is part of the prestigious Chateau Franc Mayne wine estate.
It’s a rural idyll with tons of character – there are pretty gardens and chic design rooms – including the woodsy Perchoir, perched up in an ancient cedar tree – and lovely views of the vines in every direction.
Beautifully landscaped gardens and a chemical-free swimming pool, cleaned by algae, give it a back-to-nature feel, but there’s luxury in the free wine tastings and tour of the Chateau’s ancient quarry cellars, as well as delicious breakfasts in the elegant dining room or on the terrace.
If you fancy a trip to Bordeaux city, it’s 40 minutes’ drive away. It is, however, a great base for exploring Bordeaux’s wine regions; the hotel hires out mountain bikes for leisurely explorations of picturesque Saint-Emilion’s vineyards.
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