7 Great Ideas For Group Breaks In Houses In France
If you’re thinking about a group holiday in France, then we’ve got some great ideas for places to stay. Whether that’s a wine estate in Bordeaux, a converted watermill in beautifulBrittany, a family holiday in a chateau in Normandy, an Alpine chalet perfect for a ski break, or maybe a couples retreat in the Three Valleys, France offers a brilliant holiday destination that groups will love. Enjoy great wine, tuck in to delicious food and explore gorgeous medieval cities, towns and villages when you spend a week across the channel. And, whatever time of year you visit, you’ll also be assured of a break from the (not-so) great British weather. Bonnes vacances! See our selection of French holiday properties.
Take your pick of some of our favourite places:
The Bordeaux wine estate
Sitting on 20 acres of peaceful French countryside outside Bordeaux, you can bring everyone you know to share a holiday at this complex of two beautifully restored barns and the original manor house, which sleeps 50 in total. With a tennis court, croquet lawn and boules court, swimming pools and a cinema it’s the perfect place to celebrate a special birthday or a wedding.
You’ll be surrounded by the vineyards of Bordeaux, so the possibilities for wine sampling are endless. The closest village is Gensac, where you can grab a baguette from the boulangerie or stop for something to eat in the cafes and restaurants. There’s also the incredible medieval town of St Emilion to discover, with its wonderful historic architecture, and great wine reputation (its famous for Grand Cru) all set in a World Heritage Site.
The incredible castle in the ‘Tuscany of France’
Chateau d’Aix in the stunning region of the Lot is undeniably beautiful - as soon as your group lay eyes on the place you’ll find a truly charming and electic mix of old and new. With large lawned gardens that offer opportunities for relaxing, as well as a pretty pool surrounded by shady red umbrellas, this wonderful castle oozes stylish decor and thoughtful touches.
Perfect for weddings, large family holidays, reunions or celebrations, there are 12 individually-designed bedrooms, which sleep up to 24 people. Linger over dinner on the terrace, which has knock-out views overlooking the valley, and let the kids curl up in the cinema room with its plush red velvet seats. The castle is handily situated in a wine-growing region too, and you don’t have to go far to try the local wine, as there’s wine tasting available right next door at the neighbouring chateau. Tres bon indeed!
The former watermill estate in Brittany
Get away from it all at this cluster of 5 properties that were previously a working watermill on a 10-acre estate where you can explore the highlights of Brittany’s coast and inland beauty. The Manor sleeps 20 and then there are four cottages, two sleeping 12, one sleeping 9 and the smallest sleeping 6. There’s also a large games room, heated swimming pool and you can go fishing on the estate grounds.
Spend your time here relaxing and listening to the river running past the houses, have a paddle or enjoy the beach areas. If you’re feeling energetic then why not borrow one of the kayaks or bikes to set out on more fast-paced adventures. You’ll love exploring the tranquil woodland, parkland and thirsty adventurers should definitely stop off at the nearby village of Plouguenast with its bars and restaurants.
The impressive chateau in Normandy
Sleeping 50 people in the chateau and 30 in the villa, this opulent retreat offers an unforgettable holiday destination. With stylish, contemporary rooms and original features everywhere you look, the spaces are perfect for group gatherings. Outside there’s a multi-use games pitch, sports hall and beautiful mature gardens and lawns. You won’t have to argue about who does the cooking either, Chateau du Baffy has two restaurants, and you can also eat al fresco on the sun terrace or courtyard.
Make the most of your stay and explore the history of the area - you’re only 3 miles from the D-Day landing sites and museums and the Bayeux tapestry is 20 minutes away. And if you’re away with golfers, then you’ll all be spoilt for choice with 34 courses to choose from in the Normandy area.
The working vineyard near Carcassonne
Just 15 minutes from the stunning medieval city of Carcassonne, this group of 9 modernised cottages sleeps up to 38 people, with the largest sleeping 12 and the smallest just 2. Set on a working winery with vineyards and olive groves, the rustic collection of cottages share a swimming pool with shady loungers and tennis court. It’s a family-friendly spot too, with a children’s play area, play room, and table tennis table at Chateau Canet as well as travel cots, high chairs and baby phones. Even better, there’s no traffic, so games of hide and seek can safely last all afternoon.
The whole of the Languedoc Rousillion is on your doorstep when you stay. Discover the Canal du Midi, where you can hire boats or join a cruise, marvel at Cathar castles, or simply wander open air markets at pretty towns and where you can choose the freshest produce to cook back at your home away from home.
The ‘Golden Triangle’ manor house
With a setting in the heart of peaceful Perigord Noir, between Sarlat and the incredible caves at Lascaux, you’ll adore this 18th century manor house, which has a definite luxury feel. Sleeping 14 in the manor in 6 double bedrooms (all ensuite) and 7 in the neighbouring 3-bedroom cottage (also all ensuite), it is great for multi-generational breaks too, as everyone gets their own space. There are also enormous grounds to explore with a large heated pool and sauna.
Away from the gorgeous interiors, outside you can soak up the spectacular scenery of the Dordogne region. Nip to Salignac, the local village to stock up on groceries and grab a slice of French village life. If you’re keen to work off the croissants, the area is criss-crossed by a network of bike routes suitable for all ages, so if you can bear to tear yourselves away from lazy days by the pool, then a day exploring on two-wheels is definitely recommended. You’re also close the medieval towns of Sarlat, La Roque Gagneac and Domme.
The stylish ski retreat
If you’re hankering after fresh clean mountain air, and endless blue skies, then seek out Chalet Crethwaite which is in a brilliant spot for the Three Valleys ski region. Perfect for summer or ski breaks, this charming and contemporary-style chalet sleeping 10 is nestled close to the gorgeous mountain village of Saint-Martin-de-Belleville, where the St Martin gondola will take you to one of the 81 slopes, suitable for all levels of ability.
When you visit in winter you can spend your days on the piste, before returning to the cosy, modern kitchen to rustle up a lazy dinner, and soak up the wonderful views over the Belleville Valley. Or stay out for the apres ski and restaurants. And if you’re a group of serious foodies, don’t miss the 3 Michelin star La Bouitte in a neighbouring hamlet. In the summer wildflowers take the place of snow and you can explore the mountains on foot or by bike, or if you’re feeling adventurous then have a go at canyoning, gorge walking or paragliding.