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The Reading Nook is a charming rustic holiday family home in traditional Provencal mas-style tucked away in the village of Fuveau, 15min south of Aix-en-Provence at the foot of Cezanne's mountain Ste. Victoire and 25min from Mediterranean beaches. Centrally located, it is 60-90min from Cannes, St. Tropez, Nice, Avignon, Arles. The house is a haven from the modern world, providing a corner for rest, play, relaxation, and reading. The house has 4 bedrooms, 1 playroom, and sleeps 8-9. It is full of character, with hand carved post, wooden ceiling beams, pine doors, and simply but tastefully decorated with high quality fittings and fixtures. Spread over one acre, it has woods, fruit trees, large pool, hammock, and is filled with many adult and children's books, videos, toys. The Reading Nook is ideal for couples and retirees, a family with children looking for run-around space, two families sharing, or family reunion.
Arts: Aix-en Provence is the home of impressionist artist Paul Cezanne (visit his studio) and French literary author Emile Zola. Van Gogh painted his starry nights in nearby Arles and Picasso is buried next to Aix. The Aix Arts and Cultural Festival in the summer is a national French highlight and a favourite among Parisians. Matisse lived in Nice 90 minutes away, which houses his museum. Along the way, visit St. Paul-de-Vence, the artist community and see Chagall's stained-glass windows on the church.
History: In addition to art history, Roman and architectural history is very near at hand. The Pont du Gard Roman aqueduct, one of the ten wonders of the ancient world, is one hour north, near Avignon, which was the site of the Vatican for 400 years. Medieval Baux-de-Provence, the 'prettiest village in France' and the Roman amphitheatre at Nimes, is still used (for bullfights), are within 60 minute drive. St. Maximum de Baume cathedral 20 minutes away is Mary Magdalene's final resting place. Abbaye de Senaque in the Luberon mountains 45 minutes away and boasts the most perfect architectural monastery in France, complete with lavender fields and lavender honey.
Physical Activities: Hike up Cezanne's mountain or go horse-back riding. Tennis is 5 minutes away. Fly a kite in the mistral wind particular to Provence at base of St. Victoire. Explore trails in the Luberon mountains fragrant with lavender and rosemary scents. White-water raft or canoe under the Pont du Gard. Ski the lower Alps 90 minutes north. Bicycle along the Tour de France routes. And, of course, all the water sports one could expect at the azur blue Mediterranean: swimming, snorkeling, sailing, wind-surfing, scuba-diving, deep-sea fishing.
The upstairs landing is in bright happy Provencal yellow with fresh lavender from the garden hanging from the beams. All three bedrooms upstairs have slanted beamed ceilings. The Master bedroom is decorated in a warm blue/pink with blue and rose coloured Sanderson linen and curtains and has an ensuite bathroom. The middle bedroom has bunk beds and is painted in subtly different shades of blue, to reflect the deep blues of the Provencal sky and azure Mediterranean sea. The 3rd bedroom, in light lavender, has twin beds with French quilts and white furniture, for a feminine touch. The guest bedroom downstairs has a sloping cream, sleigh double bed and warm oak parquet floor. Extending from the living room, near the fireplace, is a little marbled hallway that leads into another room with a separate exterior door and French windows, which has been made into a playroom, stocked with toys and board games, and has a wrought-iron daybed with French quilt. Baby cot is available....moreless
All bathrooms upstairs have lovely deep Villeroy & Boch bathtubs, with Victorian-style Horus taps. There is a separate shower stall in the main bathroom, which is decorated in a bright Provencal yellow-orange ochre and bordered with delicately painted Porcelanosa tiles. A hairdryer is provided. The downstairs cloakroom/powder room is decorated in a beautiful Laura Ashley lavender toile print wallpaper....moreless
Excellent guidebooks available at the home. Linens provided. Gardening, pool maintenance and utilities included. 70 euros cleaning charge for parties of more than 6, to be passed to cleaner. Long term lets available except during summer months. PLEASE NOTE: All booking and reservation documents, driving instructions, house guides, and most books and videos at the house are in ENGLISH. House manager speaks English, intermediate French....moreless
Check in is Saturday-Saturday. Check in at 4PM. Check out at 10AM.
Cleaning fee of 70 euros for parties 6-7 or more than 3 bedrooms used, 90 euros for parties 8+ to be passed to cleaner.
Except during summer months, short stays and discounts for long stays possible.
Deposit of 20% upon booking (not 25% as the website says), which acts as confirmation. Full balance due 8 weeks prior to arrival.
100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
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15 minutes south of Aix-en-Provence, at base of Cezanne's mountain Ste. Victoire, 20-25 minutes from Mediterranean beaches, 90 minutes from Nice, 90 minutes from Avignon and ancient Roman wonder Pont du Gard, Chateuneuf-du-Pape wineries, 45 minutes from Arles, Van Gogh's old home. Rustic traditional Provencal village, strong community, great September fair with international writers festival. Great walks, sports facilities nearby, 2 hours from ski slopes.
Other Activities: beach and sailing/all water sports only 25 minutes away, skiing 2 hours.
Golf: 5 minutes to Golf Sainte Victoire. Also Port Royal, La Fregate Bandol, Aix within 20 minute ride.
Ski: 2 hours to lower Alps and Ecrin national forest. Closest is PraLoup (90 min), day trip possible. Guide materials at house. 2 1/2-3 hrs. to Grenoble and Alpes d'Huez.