We had stayed in one of the gites here some time ago and enjoyed it so much that we decided to return this year in a larger group to stay in the chateau.
What a stunning location! The chateau is beautiful, full of period features and rustic charm, all beautifully furnished and accessorised with quirky vintage items and antiques, which give a real French atmosphere.
It was a great pleasure to meet the owner briefly who was very helpful with all sorts of local information.
We loved it and will definitely return.
We really enjoyed a winter break in this historic property. We loved the period furniture and authentic fittings. An ideal location for a break.
We booked our stay by quite low price via AirBnB. We know that the price was lower than the one normally proposed, but it was quite late already, and the owner proposed such price and accepted these conditions after our request. Therefore, we believe the price should not play any role here as it was part of the regular contract signed by both parties.
Our experience with the property is twofold. First, the castle is really beautiful, has beautiful garden and pool and we had good time there. However, you have to be aware what you get. The castle is very old, so are the furniture, and the whole interior. The internet is only available in very specific spots, and the water pressure is sometimes not enough to shower properly (only cold water available). Moreover, there are ants, lizards and mice everywhere, and sometimes in the castle as well. However, this is not what we criticize, since we knew it is an old building with its weaknesses.
The main problem is the arrogant behavior of the owner, so we highly advise you not to come here. The problem began as we were forced to transfer a rental deposit shortly before our visit directly to the owner. Although this is against the terms and, conditions of AirBnB, we did it not to risk our holidays (we had a bad feeling in this moment already but were told by the owner that this is standard approach and everybody does so). Afterwards, you will be spammed with emails to give a positive feedback, as the price was so low and this would be crucial (3-4 emails, one even before we arrived). However, we did not want to give a feedback until we received our deposit back. The owner told us that everything should be alright, but did not transfer the money. More than a week later she changed her mind, and claimed we took several items from the castle (although another family lived in the castle after us already). We never saw a protocol, nor a list of the apparently missing items (despite of asking to tell us what exactly was missing, as we did not take anything from the property). If she claimed we stolen her items, we were wondering why she did not involve police straight away – we would be happy to go there and prove that it was not true. Hence, from our point of view, she took the money from us, only we do not want to give her a positive review right away or because she wanted to earn more to the relatively small price demanded at the beginning (she told us, “she has the money, and the property so what do we want to do?”). We engaged AirBnB to solve the problem and if this will not help (as the deposit was transferred beside the system) we will engage a lawyer, to get our money back and we are sure we will get it back. It is a matter of rules, respect and honesty and we will not leave it like this.
Again, do not come here, unless you exactly behave like the owner wants (send thankful emails, provide positive feedback prior of arrival, do not touch any items, etc), or you will have lose your deposit. There are other reviews (in French) showing, that we are not the first family having this problem with her.
We are frequent travelers, go for holidays at least 5 times a year all over the world and this was the first time we met such a rude and awful owner of the property.
There was plenty of room for the ten of us. Beautiful chateau.The children spent hours in the large pool.Wonderful beaches - 25 minutes car ride away in Il d'Oleron. We mainly ate at the house's large outside table - big supermarket 5 miles away. Visited Saintes, Royan and La Rochelle plus smaller nearby towns.
Perfect non tourist location on outskirts of village but within easy reach of attractions and walking distance to village. Beautiful grounds and good size pool. Plenty of space for all. Great outside BBQ area.
Our party of 12 consisted of old university friends from 45 years ago and was a tremendous success. Chateau Rochebonne certainly played its part in the enjoyment.
Aspects we enjoyed particularly were:
1. The house absorbed us very well, allowing us to pursue different activities in different places without disturbing each other.
2. It was lovely to be able to eat in three different places – the dining room, the kitchen and outside.
3. We enjoyed the eclectic selection of artefacts around the house.
4. The cycling in the locality was wonderful. The company recommended from whom to hire bikes was excellent.
5. All the paperwork sent beforehand was most useful, including the list of things to do. I particularly appreciated the helpfulness in the run-up to our visit.
6. It was good to have the pool temperature right – several of our party enjoyed swimming.
7. Christine, the local contact, could not have been more helpful - her manner added to our enjoyment.
8. We enjoyed exploring what was for all of us a new area of France and there was plenty for all of us to do.
Inevitably there were a few things that could be improved or repaired. When these were mentioned efforts were made promptly to deal with them.
Overall our impression was overwhelmingly positive.
The experience of staying in a Chateau in the French countryside was everything we were expecting and more. The house and the grounds were beautiful. As you went about your day in the house, you could "feel" the history of the house and the surrounding area. It was exactly what we were looking for. This property is an excellent choice for large families (for example, a family reunion) or a group of close friends traveling together. Our visit was special as it was harvesting time in the vineyards.
The management does a good job of running the Chateau. It was clean and neat. The grounds were well kept and it was stunningly beautiful inside and out. I highly recommend this place.