The villa has a low-aspect roof which allows it to fit in snugly into the vast expanse of woodland in the south-east Var Department. The four double bedrooms provide accommodation for four couples, but there are also additional beds for four children. Three of the bedrooms open out onto the wide terrace with a stunning view of the coast at St. Tropez. A long drive leades through a remotely controlled gate and past the housekeeper's lodge to the main building and the external gymnasium (where further temporary accommodation is available for two people). Unlimited shaded on-site parking is available.
What a pied-à-terre for the best intentions of dolce far niente! Start off with a pre-breakfast swim in the terrace pool, exercise in the gym to justify a light lunch, gaze to the South-East down towards the distant coastline around St. Tropez while contemplating the composition of your evening cocktail. For the mildly more active, stroll up and down the steep lanes or drive off to the high life of the French Riviera a few miles away. Either way, find yourself at home for dinner in the most elegant surroundings.
Living room and Dining room: Very large open-plan area with open fireplace. Dining for 15, with two sofas (angle and straight), and other correponding furniture. Various contemporary works of art.
Kitchen: Intergral with living/ dining room. Luxuriously appointed and equipped to service easily all the full number of possible guests.
Bedrooms: Four beautiful and very well appointed double bedrooms, each with its own en-suite bathroom and access to a terrace. One has two additional built-in bunk beds, and another has an additional sofa-bed. There is also a fifth bedroom next to the gym which can either be used as temporary accommodation, for the occasional visitor or for attendant staff such as a nanny.
• Master bedroom: Double bed (160 cm), sofa (acts also as a single sofa-bed), walk-in wardrobe, small office en-suite, very large en-suite bathroom separate en-suite WC, couch, TV, AC (NB This room is raised 20 cm above the rest of the accommodation). Access to main terrace.
• Bedroom 2: Double bed (160 cm, splittable into two single beds). En-suite bathroom. Built-in wardrobe. (NB This room is lowered 20 cm below the rest of the accommodation). Access to the main terrace.
• Bedroom 3: Double bed (160 cm). Walk-in wardrobe. En-suite bathroom. Access to main terrace.
• Bedroom 4: Double bed (180 cm) plus two built-in bunkbeds. Built-in wardrobe. En-suite bathroom. Access to small own shaded separate terrace facing North-West.
Bathrooms: Each of the four bedrooms is associated with its own en-suite bathroom. In addition there is a general WC. Bathroom 1: bathtub, shower, wash basin. Bathroom 2: shower, washbasin, WC. Bathroom 3: bathtub, washbasin, WC. Bathroom 4: bathtub, shower, washbasin, WC.
• Fully-equipped office (en-suite with master bedroom)
• Laundry room with 2 washing machines and 1 dryer
• Gym (treadmill, weights, and other large apparatus)
• Storage room (with external access)
• Workshop (access only by special arrangement)
Outside: land of 3 hectares in total at around 360 m above sea level, comprising mainly woodland and bush forming part of the cork and chestnut tree extensive surrounding forest. The main dining and lounge areas and three of the bedrooms open out through sliding doors onto a wide (400 m2) south-east facing terrace, amply furnished with sun-loungers, table and chairs. Hardly necessary to mention that this spot will be your standard venue for every lazy meal, overlooking 15 to 20 km of slopes down to the coast. A patch has been reserved for boules, and a section of the garden terraced in preparation for a future private tennis court. A trampoline and table tennis are available, and there is extensive external lighting.
The property is protected by traditional metal gates controlled by a coded entry pad. Park anywhere along the winding drive, and ingratiate yourself with the housekeeper who lives in the gate cottage.
Swimming pool: Use the small, solar-heated pool on the terrace for dips, available for use throughout the year (weather permitting!).
Internet/Telephone: Internet (wifi thoughout the house) and landline telephone (calls to fixed lines in Europe and North America) are available at no cost.
Baby facilities: Two baby cots & a high chair are available.
Supplementary services: the housekeeper can provide or organise a whole variety of additional services, including cooking, babysitting, cleaning, chauffeuring, massage, and beauty, manicure, and pedicure treatment.
Environmental features: None.
Damage deposit: 1000 Euros on arrival, refunded at the end of the stay (less the replacement cost of any breakages).
Bed & bathroom linen: weekly change included in rental cost. Pool towels also provided.
Gas, electricity & water: all included in rental cost.
Cleaning: The costs of normal cleaning at the end of the stay are included. Intermediate cleaning during the stay can be negotiated with the housekeeper.
Holiday tax: covered under the rental price.
Change over day: Sunday to Sunday is preferred, but other days are possible. Arrival between 16:00h and 21:00h, depart before 10:00h.
Long weekend stays: Not possible here.
Pets: May be accepted by prior request only
Smoking: Strictly not permitted inside the villa. Please remove cigarette ends from the outside areas!
HOW TO GET THERE
By Car: The roads and autoroutes in France are a pleasure, so driving can sometimes make a good alternative to flying – at least you’ll already have your car with you! From the UK you have the choice of using the ferries or the Eurotunnel for your crossing. Once in the South of France, this property can be easily accessed via the A7 and A8 autoroutes.
By Air: Toulon is the closest international airport (56km, 1h07m), but Nice (108 km, 1h20m) has more flights and connections though Marseille Provence (125km, 1h31m) offer additional alternatives.
By Train: Eurostar runs from London to Paris city centres and then the high speed TGV service runs from Paris to Nice. The nearest TGV station to this property is Draguignan - Les Arcs.
• Full directions will be sent to you once you have made a booking.
About the local area
LOCAL AREA INFORMATION
The property is located 2 km from the village of la Garde-Freinet, in the middle of the Massif des Maures with its steeply rolling hills and cover of chestnut and cork trees. So if you stay very local, you can walk into the medieval village to practice the lingo, or walk further afield on a botanical expedition - a pocket satnav will find your way home. Once in your car for a near-by cruise, go to Mayons, Plan de la Tour, Grimaud and its port, Cogolin, St. Tropez and the beaches on its glorious peninsula.
Local shops, restaurants, bars and bakers are all to be found in the vllage, but do by all means make use of the housekeeper's additional services to effectively bring many goods and services into your new temporary home. Drive 10 minutes to Cogolin for a well-stocked supermarket.
Local markets open up on Wednesday and Sunday in la Garde, but there are similar events in each of the many surrounding villages and towns.
Sporting activities: the nearby village has an open-air pool (25x10m) and a sports hall (used as gym and for martial arts); there is of course a much larger selection of sports activities in St. Tropez (21km, 0h33m away).
Beaches: A large spread of sandy strips at Port Grimaud and around the bay of St. Tropez. These places of sun-worship are, after all, a major part of what this saintly harbour town is known for.
Getting around: Up here you really are away from it all, and paying good money for it. If you still feel you want to join the crowds during the day, then of course you will need to hire a car, say from Les Arcs, Plan de la Tour, Grimaud or towards St. Tropez. Or stay at home and in the village and hire a taxi for the occasional trip away.
Sightseeing: There are umpteen things to do from this pied-à-terre. Start with the 12th century ruins at Fort Freinet nearby, progress through the myriads of charming shaded villages by bike, motorbike or car, and work you way either down to the coast (where you can drift from one little harbour town to the next), or up to the famous Verdon Gorge (where some of you may want to swallow some Valium first) and its associated lakes.
Other entertainment: We just can't believe that you come up again asking for more, but if you must, then hire a fishing boat from any place along the coast, take your wallet to a casino, get drunk in Grimaud and walk home through the night. Or any combination of your choice!