Looking for a special place to stay in the Dordogne? Ideally situated near the bank of the Dordogne River yet within walking distance of La Roque-Gageac (recognised as one of Les Plus Beaux Villages de France), Manoir de la Malartrie is one of my favourites. Not only are the rooms spacious and lovingly decorated with colourful fabrics and attractive furnishings, but the windows also open out to the enormous and well-maintained gardens. No detail has been overlooked by the attentive and hospitable owners.
Ouafaa loves her garden, and her passion shows as each time we’ve stayed at the Manoir, she’s expanded the garden with more fountains, waterfalls, pathways, flowers and plants. You can enjoy the heated pool or relax in one of the multitude of seating areas niched amongst the foliage. Daniel does the heavier work of rototilling the soil and moving large stones. He has also done a majority of the building renovation. Both are talented yet modest and respond quickly and diligently to meet the needs of their guests.
Originally a 19th century manor house connected to the nearby (and now privately owned) Chateau Malartrie, the Manoir has become a well-run Chambre d’hôtes that’s meticulously cared for. With five spacious bedrooms in the manoir itself, and an apartment in an outbuilding, there is ample choice when it comes to quiet and comfort. The petit déjeuner is offered in a stylish salon with a magnificent old fireplace.
A pathway that bypasses the main road leads from the garden property to the village, a scenic 10-minute walk. There you will find shops, cafés, restaurants and walkways above the village that offer magnificent views of the river.
Le manoir de la Malartrie, 24220 Vézac, Dordogne / Périgord Noir. Tel: +33 (0)5 53 29 03 51. Rooms from 128 euros/night in the low season.
Jo Anne Marquardt is the author of My Trip Around the Hexagon: Meandering in France and Falling in Love with France, both available at Amazon.com. Her first published book, Falling in Love with France, offers responses to the various questions friends and family have asked her over the years about why she visits France so often. The second book includes illustrations and descriptive notes from her travel journals.