Les Lis is a three-bedroom, 500-year-old stone house perched on a steep hill in the quiet medieval town of St-Bresson. The house and village offers superb views of the valley Vis and the peaks of the Séranne and Pic Saint Loup. When we conceived of Les Lis, we envisioned a place where people could go to feed their senses and escape the hectic and commercial emphasis of modern day life. Like many houses in the Languedoc area, the exact date of its construction is unknown, as the records were lost during the French Revolution.
The spacious house (laid out on 4 levels) is well appointed with quality furnishings and original art. Enjoy cooking in a fully equipped kitchen and a choice of dining one on of two terraces or in the traditional dining room which has been used to feed as many as 18 for a sit down meal!
Hike the various mountain trails or relax with a glass of superb local wine on one of two terraces and enjoy the views. A short drive down a picturesque and windy road will take you to the bottom of the hill, where the river runs through the small village of St.-Laurent-le-Minier. There is a popular bathing spot for locals and tourists alike at the Cascade de la Vis, with several waterfalls and a deep cavern which allows the bravest to dive into the water from a medieval arched bridge. Canoeing, horseback riding, cycling are just a few of the outdoor pleasures you can enjoy. The area is a mecca for artists and writers—and studios and small galleries abound. And of course, the region is known for it's excellent wines and goat cheeses.
|Size||Sleeps up to 6, 3 bedrooms|
|Nearest beach||Montpellier 50 km|
|Will consider||House swap, Long term lets (over 1 month)|
|Nearest Amenities||7 km|
|Nearest travel links||Nearest airport: Montpellier or Nimes 50 km, Nearest railway: Montpellier or Nimes|
|Family friendly||Suitable for children over 5|
|Notes||Pets welcome, No smoking at this property|
|General||Central heating, CD player, Wi-Fi available|
|Standard||Kettle, Toaster, Iron, Hair dryer|
|Utilities||Clothes dryer, Dishwasher, Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Freezer, Washing machine|
|Rooms||3 bedrooms, 1 bathrooms of which 1 Family bathrooms, Solarium or roof terrace|
|Furniture||1 Sofa beds, Double beds (2), Cots (1), Dining seats for 12, Lounge seats for 8|
|Other||Linen provided, Towels provided|
|Outdoors||Balcony or terrace, Private garden, BBQ|
|Further details indoors|
You enter the house from the small walled courtyard. Inside the walled courtyard is a small garden filled with roses, peonies, day lillies, a variety of spring and summer bulbs, and various other perennial flowers.
A covered terrace has an antique mosiac floor and a small seating area with table and chairs. Two steps up from the covered terrace and you are in the living room. The windows in the living room can be thrown open to the plaza.
The windows frame the medieval church across the plaza and the virgin Mary with her painted white gloves. The living room has tall ceilings, original beams, and a fireplace. It also has a traditional “cats” window with original fixtures. The living room is well appointed with an oversized couch and chairs, hand-loomed throw pillows, a tete-e-tete table, Persian rug, and small stereo. Original art decorates the walls.
From the living room, you enter the kitchen with its 15th-century tile floors. The kitchen has a full-size American-style refrigerator, a six-burner stove, a dishwasher, a small pantry and plenty of cupboards and counter space. The stoneware is traditional Anduzian. The kitchen is fully equipped. There is also a side door leading from the kitchen outside down a short flight of steps to the two-car detached garage. From the kitchen you enter a hall where we store beach towels, beach blankets, and various other items you may need for exploration around the local area. The bathroom is off this hall and has a tile shower and sink, toilet, and storage facilities. There is a washing machine and dryer in one of the caves (unfinished rooms) off the walled garden.
Moving up some tiled stairs from the hall is the entrance to the dining room. The dining room faces south and has several antique windows. There is a large table (easily sits eight and has an extension for 12). The dining room also opens out to the covered terrace through a medieval arched door. The dining room is adorned with original art, pottery, and a Persian rug.
If you continue up the stairway past the entrance to the dining room you reach two of the three bedrooms. The bedrooms all contain an antique armoire or closet and a dresser or drawers in the armoire. The beds have top-quality mattresses, 300-count brushed cotton bedding, lightweight down comforters, and duvets. Small throw rugs are scattered about the tile floors. Original art also hangs in all the bedrooms. The third bedroom is reached through ladder-type stairs in the livingroom. It is a very large sunny room containing a click-clack — a couch that folds down into a queen-size bed. This room also contains a solid maple desk and a seating area for reading or visiting. The room is perfect for painting or writing. In fact, we call it the Writers' Room. The Writers' Room opens out onto a terrace that has a teak table and chairs that seats six, and two teak loungers. The terrace overlooks the village and the surrounding countryside. The wisteria winds up and around the sides of the terrace, and a venerable giant of a plane tree partially shades the terrace in the hottest summer months.
The kitchen has a full-size American-style refrigerator, a six-burner stove, a dishwasher, a small pantry and plenty of cupboards and counter space. The stoneware is traditional Anduzian. The kitchen is fully equipped. Full set of high quality pots and pans, cookie sheets, cake pans, ceramic roasting dishes. Traditional Aduzian stoneware for 12, including multiple serving dishes, meat platter, and serving trays. Ice bucket, drink mixer, and glassware, including water jugs for the table. Linen tablecloths, placemats, and napkins. Bamboo placemats for the terrace, cutting boards, breadboards, bread box. Coffee maker, coffee grinder, toaster, hand-beater. Full stock of utensils. Supplies such as basic spices, soap, dishwashing and dishwasher liquid, detergent. In cubbyhole in the hall you'll find an iron, ironing board, beach towels and beach blanket, extra-large canvas bag for shopping at the market. The bathroom is equipped with a blow-dryer and hair iron.
|Further details outdoors|
You enter the house from the walled courtyard or from the kitchen door on the opposite side of the house. Inside the walled courtyard is a small garden filled with roses, peonies, day lilies, a variety of spring and summer bulbs, and various other perennial flowers.Moving up ten stone steps you enter a covered terrace, surrounded by a giant purple wisteria that rises up to the third story of the house.The covered terrace has an antique mosiac floor and a small seating area with a table that will seat 4 (6 in a squeeze). At the roof level there is a second terrace with two loungers and a table/chairs that will sit 6.
Across from the kitchen is a garage and parking space for one car. The house is surrounded by small stone flower beds w climbing roses. Window boxes filled w flowers hang from all the windows.
Our caretaker is french with limited English-speaking skills. But English speaking native (us) available at all times via email to answer questions.
With mountains and gorges (Robert Louis Stevenson's Travels on a Donkey took place in the Cévennes mountains), rivers like the Hérault and the Orb and the Aude, extinct volcanoes, manmade marvels like Carcassonne, Aigue Mortes and La Grande Motte, the region can justly claim to be one of Europe's jewels.
Moving north (inland) from Montpellier, the Languedoc region, as this part of the northern Hérault is called, boasts a panorama of dry limestone hills and plateaus with sparse vegetation. Garrigue is an old Occitan word for the holly-oak, and these scrubby would-be trees grow everywhere, along with thyme, lavender-scented maquis, olive trees and the everpresent grapevine.The windblown landscapes continue all the way down to the sea and are as romantic as Provence but with a fraction of the tourists and without the chilly effects of the mistral.
The Languedoc boasts of some of the best wines in the southern region and is quickly becoming one of the brightest stars in the French wine firmament. It is a huge wine region that has been divided into 12 specialized micro-areas, or terroirs. Vineyards dot the landscape. The Pic-St-Loup, a magnificent cliff-rimmed double-humped mountain, is home to several outstanding vineyards. Our favourites include the Chateau d’Hortus and Mas Bruguiere.
St Bresson is a gateway between the northern Hérault and the southern Cévennes— topographically two very diverse regions. While the northern Hérault is scrub and desert, the Cévennes is one of the leading agricultural regions of France, boasting forests full of chestnut trees, rolling hills and valleys, small fertile streams, and rich dark soil.
The area around St-Bresson offers many, many things to do—so many that naming all of them is impossible. What we’ve done on our personal web is to give you an idea of the types of activities you can do and the types of places you can see in the region.
Please see our web (click on the tab WHAT TO DO for ideas.) There you will find a list of Market Days, canoeing and kayaking, hiking, antiquing, arts, beaches and swimming spots, places to see, and vineyards. Our personal web is quiet extensive and will keep you informed and entertained!