Steve is from New-Zealand and one of his favourite anecdoctes about my family is how we (French) are passionate about things. Certainly in my family, discussions at meal times, are anything but passionate (if not heated)....but leave politics and rugby aside, there is one subject that is very important to us......food.
A few years ago, around the diner table, Steve was trying to understand what we were all arguing about... I smiled and said to him: 'we're not arguing, we're talking about food' and I think that says it all.
The reason, I mention this, is because as I was reading about Le Chateau de Lartigolle, for my round-up of France's best boutique hotels (see Chateau De Massillan), all I could think of, was food....
Le Chateau de Lartigolle is located in the Gers region in the South West and of course Paris is beautiful, romantic, etc but if you want to eat well and experience what the French way of life is about, you really need to spend some times in the South West, starting from Bordeaux and the Bay of Arcachon then heading south towards Toulouse, Montpellier and then South in Provence.
Besides being located in one of the most famous regions for traditional French food (think foie gras, magrets de canard and wines....I'm sure vegetarians arent not that impressed by this and I apologise), the Chateau de Lartigolle is a beautiful renovated 17th Century estate with six luxurious en-suite double-bedrooms, a large studio that can sleep 6 people and three smaller double-bedrooms in the wing.
The Observer as the 'Gallic answer to Babington House' and is a great place to relax with your family because the kids will have plenty of things to do outside. The property sits in 22 acres of beautiful grounds and has a newly built tennis court and a 16m swimming-pool. There is also a vineyard, orchard and an ancient wood full of wildlife and a plethora of indigenous trees.
You can relax in the Clubroom (pic 1 above) or le Petit Salon (pic 2 above) for afternoon tea or a little nap...while the kids are having fun in the children's lounge with DVD, play board games, baby foot (see below) before diner time in the Grand Salon. You can get the Love wall-hanging by Paul Smith from The Rug company (expect to pay around £695).