Located in the Normandy region of north-west France, Chateau D’Audrieu offers a timeless, luxurious and relaxing environment. Nestled amongst 50 acres of park and 12 acres of gardens, it’s hard not to gasp at the magnificence of the 18thcentury listed building, as we turn left down the stony drive. The 5-star Château D’Audrieu itself is a listed historical monument, with a history closely linked to William the Conqueror.
Each room is very different at Chateau D’Audrieu, which means there is something for families of every shape and size. Our residence was one of the two junior suites onsite. Walking inside, it felt like being transported back a century or two. Plush carpet, ornate furniture and what must be centuries old portraits decorate the walls, with a huge 18thcentury style wardrobe– perfect for housing a mini-break wardrobe or all the kids stuff (almost). The bed alone was big enough to house the entire family, although a free baby cot is available upon request, as is an extra bed. To add to the magic, the room is flooded with light from the two huge windows which overlook the main court of the Chateau.
The room was truly beautiful with a magnificent bathroom which holds a bath, a sink full of divine Chateau D’Audrieu amenities and tucked away to the rear of the bathroom, the most amazing shower we’ve ever seen. If you are looking for a more unique experience at the Chateau, you need not look further than the treehouse. This suite offers exceptional views from the terrace, where you can enjoy canapes and drinks whilst admiring the surrounding countryside – a modern escape which combines luxury and unusual. A fantastic option for teenagers too – whilst the parents relax in one of the other 24 rooms at the Chateau.
Top of your list when visiting Chateau D’Audrieu is a visit to the onsite restaurant, Le Seran, headed up by chef Olivier Barbarin. The restaurant was Michelin starred prior to extensive renovations that were carried out two years ago, and starting from scratch after reopening, Barbarin cannot be far off his next.
Many dishes incorporate seasonal ingredients grown on the on-site garden. We had a tour of the gardens which Oliver tends alongside the Chateau’s long-serving gardener Alain, here we sampled all sorts of herbs, vegetables and fruits. Barbaric also has complete control of the ingredient sourcing process and ensures that 95% of them come within 60km of the chateau.
Our breakfast, lunch and dinner was all cooked by Barbarin himself during our visit, and the first morning he came out to greet us, ensuring everything was OK. The lunches and dinners were equally amicable. We were also treated to afternoon tea in the upstairs drawing room. Featuring a selection of pastries and cakes, this experience was the perfect mix of a traditional English high tea, and a luxurious, regal experience.
The Pool & Spa
No luxurious getaway would be complete without a trip to the spa, and Chateau D’Audrieu’s version doesn’t disappoint. With a selection of relaxing facials and massages available, it’s the perfect start or finish to your day – we highly recommend the full body massage! Treatments can be booked via the front desk, and hotel staff are only too happy to assist. Walking through the grounds to the spa is an experience in itself – despite the Château being fully booked during our visit, we could be forgiven for thinking we were walking around the gardens of our own homes. Not a soul around (bar a wave from the gardener) the only sound was the crunching on the gravel from my shoes, and the light wind flowing through the flowers.
Open from May to the end of September, the pool is also a must do. An activity the kids are guaranteed to love, the outside pool is heated at 25 degrees. Special towels are available in the changing rooms, as well as pool slippers that you can acquire from reception.
We highly recommend a private tour of Normandy – the lovely team at Chateau D-Audrieu are only too happy to point you in the right direction. We got picked up and driven to the site of the D-Day landings – immersed in history and one of WW2’s most important events. We also visited the hugely famous Bayeux Tapestry, an embroidered cloth stretching an incredible nearly 70 metres long depicting the conquest of England by William, Duke of Normandy.
After a full day of activities, why not relax outside the Chateau before dinner over a game of petanque? Something great for the little ones – although grown up love it too.
After a luxurious few days spent at Chateau D’Audrieu, we return to Paris almost shocked to remember the hustle and bustle of a busy city. With so much to offer the whole family, we highly recommend a stay at this provincial slice of paradise. We’re already planning our next trip back.
Where: Chateau D’Audrieu, 14250 Audrieu, France
Website: Chateau D’Audrieu
Phone number: +33 2 31 80 21 52
Prices start at £310 per night