A Symphony of the Most Beautiful Summer Gardens of Central France

Reservations now open

Overview

Spring has changed to summer and the glorious gardens are in fragrant bloom. Experience a magnificent overview of French garden styles with Penny Dobbie. The La Creuzette team composed a magnificent overview of French traditional and contemporary botanical and architectural design. From the spectacular gardens of Courances just outside Paris to the world-renowned garden festival at Chaumont-sur-Loire. Join us on this remarkable expedition.


Cost Breakdown

La Creuzette special interest programmes are carefully compiled to ensure that you have the ultimate, hassle-free luxury holiday experience. Our all-inclusive land arrangement means that everything aside from flights, Schengen visas and personal expenses are taken care of as follows:


  • €3 500 per person sharing
  • Transfer from Paris through the Loire to our hotel outside Tours
  • One night’s stay in a hotel outside Tours in double or twin rooms
  • Transport from Tours to La Creuzette
  • Luxurious accommodation at La Creuzette for the 5 nights / 6 days
  • Full board accommodation (i.e. all meals with drinks, also at restaurants we visit)
  • All excursions (castles, gardens, markets) including entrance fees and gratuities
  • All cooking demonstrations and guest chefs
  • Transport to Châteauroux train station and train back to Paris


A non-refundable deposit of €1 000 secures your booking with the balance due on or before your arrival at La Creuzette. A single supplement of €650 for the week applies for single occupation.


Itinerary

Day 1 (Saturday 6th June)

Early morning arrival in Paris where you are met at the Charles de Gaulle airport or hotels in Paris. From here, we depart for the Vaux-le-Vicomte estate, 55 km outside Paris. This castle is referred to as ‘the most beautiful in the world’ and you will see why when we are there. We enjoy lunch at their restaurant and continue to visit the castle and of course the gardens which made Andre le Notre famous. Afterward, we continue to the Château de Courances, a French Renaissance water garden with five centuries of history. Courances is celebrated for the waterworks, fed by 14 natural springs that grace its magnificent park. Later, we drive to the Loire Region and check-in at our hotel just outside Tours. We enjoy an early dinner at a nearby restaurant.

Day 2 (Sunday 7th June)

After breakfast, we load up our luggage and drive to the Chaumont-sur-Loire garden exposition. Here you will see fresh and exciting renderings of new generation landscapes and experimental gardens. After a light lunch, we continue a little further downriver to spend the afternoon at the evolutionary gardens of Villandry known since the Rennaisance times for their incomparable beauty. We have a delicious dinner at L’Escale village en route before continuing on to La Creuzette, your chateau holiday residence. Relax and unwind and settle into your rooms.


Day 3 (Monday 8th June)

Breakfast will be served at 09:00 in the main dining room. Our excursions today take us to the Ateliers de la Marche in Aubusson and Felletin. We first explore the picturesque village of Aubusson where French tapestries and carpets have been woven and restored for centuries. The new Cité de la Tapisserie with superb collections of ancient and contemporary tapestries will be our first experience. Lunch will be enjoyed at one of the restaurants on the banks of the river Creuse and later we also visit a master weaver’s studio, the carton (tapestry pattern) museum, and a restorer of antique masterpieces. The Neolice studios in Felletin, with their advanced technology, will show us how they are able to create fine tapestries mechanically for the many contemporary artists and designers that they count amongst their clientele. Later, we head back to La Creuzette. We meet in the dining room of the summerhouse at 19h30 for a glass of champagne followed by dinner.

Day 4 (Tuesday 9th June)

After breakfast, we travel to the picturesque village of Apremont on the banks of the Allier River. Listed as one of the “most beautiful villages of France”, it is home to the romantic “French Folly” gardens. Here you will find rare trees, floral borders, a Chinese bridge and a Turkish pavilion that seems to float at the edge of a lake. We have lunch in the gardens at Bistro de la Lavoir with time afterward to amble through the rest of the village. We return to La Creuzette for cocktails and a cooking demonstration presented by a guest chef. Dinner follows.

Day 5 (Wednesday 10th June)

This morning we venture to the charming Château d’Ainay-le-Vieil. We may have the rare privilege of being received by countess Marie-France Peyronnet or her sister, the Princess de la Tour d’Auvergne. Their passion for horticulture led to the establishment of the Château’s landscaped gardens with majestic oak, cedar and hornbeam trees, sculpted orchard, island garden, and rare old scented roses. The 18thCentury Chartreuse gardens will be an absolute highlight. From here, we drive further up to the Abbey of Noirlac, a beautifully restored Cistercian Abbey complex, with pure uncluttered architecture that calms all senses. We enjoy a delicious picnic in their garden under age-old linden trees. After our picnic lunch, we drive to the Priory garden at Notre Dame d’Orsan (this was the inspiration for the garden design at Babylonstoren in Franschhoek). We spend the rest of the afternoon in this magical garden. We return to La Creuzette for cocktails and dinner.

Day 6 (Thursday 11th June)

Today is market day in Boussac. After breakfast, we meander through the colourful market stalls which are laden with fresh fruit and vegetables, fragrant soap from Marseilles and other artisanal products from the region. Here we find inspiration for our lunch menu. Using the fresh ingredients selected at the market, lunch will be prepared and enjoyed at the long stone table in front of the La Creuzette summer kitchen. After lunch, we take a short walk to the 11th century Chateau de Boussac. This gothic castle (privately owned) is filled with an incredible collection of antiques and beautiful tapestries. We may have an opportunity to see the owners’ private apartments, which are not usually open to the general public. We explore the rest of the village and its interesting history. We head back to La Creuzette, where you will have some time to pack, before we meet for drinks, followed by our farewell dinner.

Day 7 (Friday 12th June)

After a leisurely breakfast, we have some time to relax at La Creuzette before we depart for Châteauroux where your fast train to Paris awaits.


Please note that this itinerary may be amended to accommodate suppliers, service providers, and the weather.

Terms and Conditions apply

06 Jun 2020 - 12 Jun 2020

€ 3 500 per person sharing

  • Transfer from Paris through the Loire to our hotel outside Tours
  • One night’s stay in a hotel outside Tours in double or twin rooms
  • Transport from Tours to La Creuzette
  • Luxurious accommodation at La Creuzette for the 5 nights / 6 days
  • Full board accommodation (i.e. all meals with drinks, also at restaurants we visit)
  • All excursions (castles, gardens, markets) including entrance fees and gratuities
  • All cooking demonstrations and guest chefs
  • Transport to Châteauroux train station and train back to Paris

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