House | 5 bedrooms | sleeps 10
Maison Mailhes easily accommodates 10 people in 2 double (both with en suites) and 3 twin bedrooms, with space for cots if required. Inside and outside dining tables seat up to 12, and two comfortable sitting rooms mean there is no shortage of space to relax indoors. Thick stone walls and modern insulation make the house cool in summer, warm in winter.
With its fabulous private pool and easy access to the stylish resort of Biarritz and the famous Atlantic surfing beaches, Maison Mailhes is an obvious summer destination, but having full gas-fired central heating and double glazing it provides a comfortable base for a memorable holiday at any time of year.
The surrounding countryside is perfect for walking and cycling enthusiasts, whilst a relaxing interlude at the thermal spa, a round of golf or a game of tennis in Salies-de-Béarn is just 10 minutes away. There are numerous activities, sights and attractions close by, and in winter skiing in the Pyrénées makes an outstanding day trip.
|Size||Sleeps up to 10, 5 bedrooms|
|Nearest beach||Lac de Sames 18 km|
|Will consider||Corporate bookings, Long term lets (over 1 month), Short breaks (1-4 days)|
|Nearest Amenities||200 m|
|Nearest travel links||Nearest airport: Biarritz or Pau 55 km, Nearest railway: Puyoo 15 km|
|Family friendly||Great for children of all ages, Suitable for people with restricted mobility|
|Notes||Pets welcome, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|Luxuries||Internet access, DVD player|
|General||Central heating, TV, CD player, Pool or snooker table, Satellite TV, Wi-Fi available|
|Standard||Kettle, Iron, Hair dryer|
|Utilities||Clothes dryer, Dishwasher, Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Freezer, Washing machine|
|Rooms||5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms of which 1 Family bathrooms and 2 En suites|
|Furniture||Single beds (6), Double beds (2), Cots (1), Dining seats for 12, Lounge seats for 10|
|Other||Linen provided, Towels provided, High chair|
|Outdoors||Balcony or terrace, Private garden, BBQ, Climbing frame|
|Further details indoors|
On the ground floor:
Large sitting room – double aspect with 3 seat sofa, 2 seat sofa and 2 armchairs, other chairs and furnishings, 32" LCD TV (UK Freesat channels), DVD player and selection of DVDs, iPod dock (charger and speakers).
Small sitting room – 3 comfy chairs, a variety of games, books and toys.
WC with wash hand basin
Utility room with automatic washing machine, tumble dryer, iron and ironing board, vacuum cleaner.
Kitchen/dining room – Measuring over 6 m x 6 m, with exposed beams and fitted with stainless steel appliances and granite worktops, this is a truly stunning room. It is wonderfully light with three french doors, one leading straight on to the terrace for effortless al fresco dining. There is a wide range of equipment including a food processor, electric kettle, filter coffee machine, espresso pot and milk frother, together with an extensive selection of pots, pans and utensils, and plenty of crockery, cutlery and glassware. The hand-made solid oak dining tables were commissioned from a local craftsman, who designed them to join together to seat up to 12 or to be used singly to create a more intimate environment for a smaller group. A highchair, which can be used with its own tray or at the table, is available for our youngest guests. For days out there is a large cool box together with picnic plates, bowls, tumblers and cutlery.
On the first floor:
Bedroom 1 – double aspect with King size bed, and en suite with bath, separate shower, basin, bidet and wc.
Bedroom 2 – double aspect with double bed, and en suite with shower, basin, bidet and wc
Bedroom 3 – twin beds, antique furniture
Bedroom 4 – twin beds with a light and airy feeling
Family bathroom – bath, separate shower, basin, bidet and wc
Large built-in cupboard to store suitcases and bags.
On the second floor:
Bedroom 5 – twin beds under original beams
Attic – pool table (hot in summer and cold in winter)
There is a cot, complete with bedding, which can be accommodated in bedrooms 1, 2 and 5.
All the bedrooms have a wardrobe and chest of drawers, and there is a bedside table and light for each person.
|Further details outdoors|
Off-street parking for up to 4 cars
Terrace with dining tables and chairs for 12 and large parasol.
Large 10.5 x 6.5 metre swimming pool with sun loungers and parasols.
Large BBQ (charcoal supplied)
Folding garden chairs
Shed with storage space for bicycles, surf boards and skis
Grassy areas where children can play
The price includes:
Bedding appropriate to the season
Tea towels and hand towels in the kitchen
Hand towels in the WC
Swimming pool towels in summer
There are no hidden extras. Two week bookings include a mid-stay change of bed linen and towels, a kitchen and bathroom clean, and essential pool cleaning and maintenance.
Our English-speaking managers live nearby and can easily be contacted.
The Aquitaine/Dordogne region
The Pyrénées Atlantiques offers a fascinating mix including Basque villages, historic medieval towns, lush countryside, rushing rivers, beautiful beaches, vineyards, fantastic restaurants, chic cities, and the rugged mountains of the Pyrénées.
This diversity produces a huge range of activities – from surfing to bird watching to walking to cycling to golf to tennis to fishing to white water rafting to skiing to gastronomy. There is truly something for everyone, and so you will never be short of relaxation and fun.
The beaches on the Atlantic coast are 45 minutes away, and offer a wonderful choice including stylish Biarritz, enchanting and family-perfect Bidart, surfers’ paradise Hossegor, and famous Saint-Jean-de-Luz. This region of France, Aquitaine, has the longest stretch of sandy coastline in Europe. It's easy to combine a trip to the beach with a visit to Bayonne, the capital of the French Basque region, and origin of wonderful food ranging from traditional chocolate to dry cured ham.
Even closer (18km) is Lac de Sames which has a sandy beach, water slides and pedalos. Lac d'Orthez (25km) has all this plus "bumper" boats. Or try Aqua Béarn, a charming water park in the village of Estialescq between Pau and Oloron-Sainte-Marie, which is great fun and suitable for all ages.
In less than an hour you can drive to San Sebastián, a cosmopolitan Spanish city with a strong Basque character and fabulous beach. Or why not cross the mountains to spend a day in Pamplona, a city full of history and deep-rooted traditions, and see its famous bullring? Venture a little further into Spain to visit the amazing Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. Do a little shopping in Spain – the tax on alcohol and other purchases is even lower than in France.
Guests of all ages will enjoy the nearby Grottes d'Isturitz et d’Oxocelhaya, but for real excitement visit the Grottes du Betharram, which are considered some of the most beautiful, and definitely amongst the most interesting, in France.
Lourdes, celebrated as the holy shrine of St. Bernadette and visited by many thousands of pilgrims each year, is just one hour away,
Ski-resorts such as Le Pierre St. Martin are 100 km or a mere one hour's drive, and make Maison Mailhes a great destination for families looking for variety during a winter break.
Those who love to shop should visit Bayonne, Biarritz, St Jean de Luz, Tarbes, Lourdes and Pau which are all full of small and fascinating shops.
La Rhune, the highest peak in the Pays Basque and the westernmost peak of the Pyrénées before they meet the sea, can be climbed on Le Petit Train de la Rhune, a cogwheel train built in 1924. The views from the peak along the northern coast of Spain and the Atlantic beaches of France towards Bordeaux are truly spectacular.
Many of the greatest French wines are produced in Aquitane, and no visit to France is complete without sampling the local wines. A day visiting the local vineyards, which produce Jurançon and Madiran, is a lovely way to see some beautiful landscapes and sleepy villages.
There is much more in this wonderful region – visit Maison Mailhes and make your own discoveries.
Salies de Bearn
Carresse is a flourishing village. People come from several miles around to the excellent bakery, just 200 metres from Maison Mailhes. There is also a hotel-restaurant, two cafés, a post office and a pharmacy all within 400 metres.
Maison Mailhes is situated 6 km east of Sorde l'Abbaye, a UNESCO site with Roman mosaics on the Chemin de St Jacques (Way of St James), an ancient pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostella which is still followed today. Travelling 6km in the opposite direction will bring you to the beautiful and historic spa town of Salies-de-Béarn with its thermal baths, shops, restaurants and sporting facilities including golf and tennis.
There are other fascinating medieval towns to explore close by, including Sauveterre-de-Béarn, Orthez, Navarrenx and St Jean Pied de Port. A 25 minute drive south brings you to Saint-Palais, a market town in the Basque region and so with a very different style and culture.
Each town has its weekly market day with local farmers and producers selling their goods. There are a number of supermarkets within a 10 or 15 minute drive for more routine shopping.
As well as Hotel-Restaurant Tissier in Carresse, there is an excellent Michelin recommended restaurant, La Belle Auberge, 4 km away in the small village of Castagnède and a variety of restaurants in nearby Salies-de-Béarn.
The only independent wine producer in the Béarn, Pascal Lapeyre, is just a few minutes away in Salies-de-Béarn. The Lapeyre family has been making wine here since 1909, and it is generally agreed that they produce the best wines in the Béarn. Look out for them – Domain Guilhemas and Domaine Lapeyre – in local restaurants and shops. Better still, call in and taste them and have a look at the huge oak barrels containing the aging wine before buying a few bottles to drink at Maison Mailhes or to take home as souvenirs.
The Gave (river) d’Oloron is within 10 minutes walk of Maison Mailhes. It is one of only 2 rivers in France where the salmon still return naturally to their spawning grounds each year, and is reputedly one of the best fishing rivers in France. Our managers can organise fishing permits for our guests. The Gave is also good for swimming and kayaking, and there is white water rafting upstream.
Maison Mailhes is an ideal base for a cycling or walking holiday. Whether you bring your own bikes or hire them nearby, there is space in the shed to keep them safely locked away when not in use. Walkers of all abilities and aspirations are well catered for, with walks ranging from gentle strolls through the beautiful countryside to demanding mountain hikes in the Pyrénées.
Fêtes are a way of life in the Pyrénées Atlantiques – you will be unlucky if you don't encounter one during your stay. There are fêtes throughout the year, but every weekend in the summer sees Carresse or one of the neighbouring villages "en fête", with food, drink, games, music and dancing. Come prepared for a warm welcome!
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Debbie and Richard L.
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