Cottage | 4 bedrooms | sleeps 8
Buried in the folds of the jaw-dropping Cirque de Lescun is the mountain village of Lescun, a settlement that has remained essentially unchanged since the 19th century. It is home to an idyllic 150 year old stone lodge called Maison Willert. Spread over three floors, this centrally heated house includes four bedrooms, two bathrooms, a huge kitchen & dining room, and satellite television.
Lescun is the ideal base for exploring Pyrenean highlights such as the ancient monastic church of Notre Dame de la Pierre and the fortified town and cathedral of Jaca. A trekker’s paradise, Lescun is an integral part of the renowned GR10 and HRP long distance footpaths. Whether you choose to hike, climb or cycle, you’ll be able to enjoy mountain views and sunsets from the large south-facing terrace with a celebratory drink whilst tending the barbecue. In winter, two working fireplaces welcome you home after skiing at nearby Candanchú & Astún.
|Size||Sleeps up to 8, 4 bedrooms|
|Nearest beach||Biarritz 152 km|
|Will consider||Corporate bookings, Long term lets (over 1 month), Short breaks (1-4 days)|
|Nearest Amenities||500 m|
|Nearest travel links||Nearest airport: Pau 75 km, Nearest railway: Oloron Ste Marie 36 km|
|Family friendly||Great for children of all ages|
|Notes||No pets allowed, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|Luxuries||Log fire, Internet access, DVD player|
|General||Central heating, Video player, CD player, Telephone, Satellite TV|
|Standard||Kettle, Toaster, Iron, Hair dryer|
|Utilities||Clothes dryer, Dishwasher, Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Washing machine|
|Rooms||4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms of which 1 Family bathrooms and 1 Shower rooms|
|Furniture||Single beds (4), Double beds (3), Cots (1), Dining seats for 8, Lounge seats for 8|
|Other||Linen provided, Towels provided, High chair|
|Outdoors||Balcony or terrace, BBQ|
|Further details indoors|
130 years ago this was a two storey lodge, with room for winter hay to feed the livestock that provided heat for the occupants. Today, the cottage is spread over three floors, and the animals have been swapped for a modern heating system. Nevertheless, the two hearths have been retained for people who prefer to watch a roaring fire instead of the satellite television.
If you enjoy cooking, you'll love the large kitchen and dining room. (If your idea of a holiday is an untouched stove, fear not; there are several excellent restaurants in the area, including one that's a five minute stroll from the front door).
The second sitting room on the first floor provides a sanctuary for reading, writing and contemplation. Four bedrooms and two bathrooms are spread over the first and second floors, providing plenty of privacy for eight people. There are two triple bedrooms, one double and a single with an additional pull-out bed.
|Further details outdoors|
The large, south-facing terrace enjoys spectacular views of the surrounding peaks. It is the perfect spot for a morning cup of tea, a lazy lunch, or evening barbecue.
We require a 30% deposit to hold a booking. The remaining 70% is due nine weeks prior to arrival . A fully refundable deposit of 250 pounds is also payable as security against any damage to the property.
Please arrive after 4pm on your arrival day and leave by 9am on the departure day.
Please contact us to ask about short breaks.
The Aquitaine/Dordogne region
Lescun is best known as the postcard-perfect gateway to the magnificent amphitheatre of peaks from which the village takes its name. Situated in the heart of the Pyrenees at an altitude of 900 metres, this is a hamlet with a heartbeat. The centre of the vibrant community is the village shop, which sells fruit and vegetables, local cheese, and fresh croissants.
Lescun is also home to the Hotel du Pic d’Anie, a handy post office, and a friendly bar that serves tasty lunches and dinners.
A short distance away is the extraordinary Chemin de la Mâture. This intriguing wave of rock was chiselled out in the 18th century to create a path down which tree trunks were carried in order to be turned into sailing masts. Another wonderful walk with spellbinding views of the Cirque de Lescun starts less than 50 metres from the front door of Maison Willert.
Lescun is a mecca for hikers, rock climbers and mountaineers. And outdoor enthusiasts of all types will find the village to be a perfect base, with paragliding in Accous, horseriding in Borce, and mountain biking in Astún. Fishing, cycling, and canyoning are also nearby.
In winter, many of the superb hiking trails that surround Lescun (which cater for all levels of ability) turn into fantastic routes for snowshoe aficionados. 34 kilometres of cross country skiing trails are maintained at the nearby Somport circuit. And Lescun is the prefect antidote to 21st century frenzied après-ski: an original Bayonne fireplace welcomes you home after a day's skiing at the Winter Olympic applicant ski resorts of Candanchú and Astún, which are a 35 minute drive from Maison Willert.
If a cultural trip is more what you had in mind, you can enjoy the château and local market in Bedous, the ancient monastic church of Notre Dame de la Pierre in Sarrance and the the meeting of Romanesque and Moorish art in the12th century church and mercy hospital (Unesco World Heritage Site) of L'Hôpital Sainte Baise.
Oloron-Sainte-Marie is also a great day trip with its rushing rivers, an ancient cathedral and its famous 'La Russe' pastry. If the weather in France closes in, head for tapas in medieval Spanish Jaca (one hour) and pay a visit to the monastery of San Juan de la Peña, which legend says was a protectorate of the Holy Grail.
For the children, there is a water park in Oloron-Sainte-Marie, an adventure park at Aramits and a wildlife centre in Borce. The beaches of Biarritz are 2.5 hours drive away.
Finally, this wouldn't be France if you couldn't also engage your taste buds during your stay. Around 100,000 kilograms of cheese is produced from high altitude pastures each year in the surrounding Aspe Valley. For local cheese, try Ferme Nouqueret. The butcher in the neighbouring village of Bedous supplies Béarnaise specialities such as fresh and dried charcuterie, and salted meats prepared to old family recipes.
In 1553, the future king, Henry IV, was baptised with a drop of Jurançon wine. This golden wine was described as the ‘wine of the King and the king of wines’ and hails from bijou vineyards tucked away in sun-kissed valleys that stretch from the terraces of Pau castle to the Pyrenees.
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6 Nov 2011
"A wonderful house on the edge of an unspoilt mountain village with breath-taking walks on its doorstep"
Maison Willert feels like a much loved family home with its books, beams, rugs, fireplaces, paintings and furniture. It's a hugely relaxing place to stay - you are miles away from the real world, but have all the modern stuff you need. We've only been in the Winter and Spring and it is a cosy place to return to after a long day's walking. With its long terrace overlooking the valley, we can imagine it would be a special place in the Summer too. The kitchen is large and well equipped, the bathrooms simple, and the bedrooms cosy. If you want something super slick and contemporary, forget it. If you want something, warm, charming and with patina, then this is the place
1 Nov 2011
"Breathtaking views and weather to match!"
The house was perfect for our group of 6, the weather was flawless, the outdoor activities were endless. We ate outside every evening under the stars with only the sounds of church bells and sheep bells! We loved the little food shop in town and the location was excellent for short day trips. The area around Lescun is filled with beautiful towns and stunning mountains. We cannot wait to revisit this wonderful memory.
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