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Please help me decide - a nice house near Menerbes or a beautiful chateau in Chateauneuf de Gadagne?

Please help me decide - a nice house near Menerbes or a beautiful chateau in Chateauneuf de Gadagne?

Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 03:40 PM
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Please help me decide - a nice house near Menerbes or a beautiful chateau in Chateauneuf de Gadagne?

Hello, all. I haven't been around much lately, since I took on an extra job August through December. But I am now back among the living and heavily into planning my next group trip to France.

This time I have 11 people going for a week in Provence. (8 of them will stay with me for another week in the French Alps, but that's beside the point for this post.) I have narrowed my house rental choices to these two.

1) A nice house about a mile downhill (NW side, near Hostellerie du Roy Soleil) from Menerbes, western end of the Luberon - 7 bedrooms and, believe it or not, 6 bathrooms! (A big plus!) Actually it is two attached houses so we would have two living rooms, two kitchens, etc. Nice pool and grounds. Has the right combination of doubles and twins. Bedrooms are a bit sparsely furnished, but look comfortable enough. Owner has been very nice in answering all my questions. She lives in Switzerland so I'm not sure if there would be someone on site in case I had a problem. (I've asked but haven't heard back from her yet about that.) Price for the week of June 3-10: 2300 euros.
Website:http://www.leschristines.ch (not much description but lots of pictures)

2)Part of a 12th, 17th century chateau in the hilltop village of Chateauneuf de Gadagne, 12 km E of Avignon. Much nicer furnishings, amazing setting. Actually has 9 bedrooms but I've been offered 6 bedrooms and 4 baths for a reduced price of 2500 euros. There is another rental on the same property and owner lives there, too, so we would have neighbors, but our part of the chateau is private, has its own pool. Website: http://www.vacationkey.com/location_2016.html

So I'm having a tough time deciding. The price is near enough the same; the chateau would be about $25 per person more for the week.

Location: both are good but I've never been to CdG, not sure I want to be in the center of the village rather than in the countryside. CdG would be a little more convenient to Avignon and points south, Menerbes a bit easier for Luberon villages. They are almost equidistant from Isle sur la Sorgue, where I'd like to go for the Sunday market.

Is there something I'm not considering? Has anyone been to Chateauneuf de Gadagne? If so, what do you think of it? Any difficulty getting in and out? Any and all advice/help appreciated.

If anyone is looking for larger houses in Provence I have quite a list I'd be willing to share!
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 03:57 PM
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I forgot to mention something important: the chateau requires a $4000 security deposit! (The owner specified two checks in American dollars.) Assuming there are no damages, I'd get $3600 back before leaving, the other $400 would be mailed to me. Although I know I'd probably get it all back, it makes me a little nervous to write checks for that sort of money. For the other house it's 1000 euros.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 04:22 PM
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Do you think there is room for one more person? If so, take the Chateau
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 04:36 PM
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I'd be nervous about writing cheques for those sorts of amounts too. I'm a village person myself, with a preference for humble but homely accommodation - preferring to spend my money on doing and seeing rather than sleeping - so for me the choice would be Menerbes. But other people will have other preferences.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 04:39 PM
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I have no idea...but wish I had your dilemna!!
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 04:58 PM
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Betty1

Did you mention when your trip is? I have not been to either of these places, and know nothing about the area, but the Menerbes house looks so nice for warm weather: less formal, the huge covered terrace/patio...

The other house is certainly more elegantly furnished, but if your visit is a summer one, the Menerbes house just looks like "summer" to me.

My two cents.

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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 06:04 PM
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I just heard back from the owner of the house near Menerbes. There is someone on site who would show us the houses and be available in case of problems, and they would return our security deposit upon leaving. There is also another person who would take care of the garden and pool. This is a really tough decision! I suppose I could put it to a vote of the group, but wanted to see what you all thought first.

I appreciate all the reponses so far, even the tongue-in-cheek ones. (Scarlett, if you wouldn't mind sharing a room with a young man...)

Tuscanlife, it is for the week of June 3-10, so yes, for summertime. Thanks for your two cents! I understand what you are saying.

Anyone familiar with Chateauneuf de Gadagne?
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 06:33 PM
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I don't know the chateau in Chateauneuf de Gadagne, but I do know the area around Mererbes and love it. so - I vote for the Menerbes accommodations. It is a lovely area. The pool will be great as it can get hot in the afternoon. The last time I was in Provence (July 2004) we stayed in Bonnieux (near Menerbes) and used the pool most every afternoon (we stayed in a B&B with a pool). I've spent quite a bit of time in Avignon, and while it is interesting, I love the hill towns more and Menerbes is more conveniently located to explore the hill towns.

What a great vacation you are planning! I hope that your travel companions will appreciate the time and effort that you put into planning this trip.

Have a great time!
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 06:49 PM
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Good to hear from you again, Betty!

My vote is for the place in Menerbes, too; both places would probably be wonderful, but the $4000 deposit would be off-putting, IMO.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2006, 06:51 PM
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LOL, Betty
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 12:14 AM
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Betty,

I don't know very well Chateauneuf de la Gadagne (I just passed through this village) but I can tell that the area of Menerbes (Luberon) is much more nicer than the area close to Avignon.
Every summer we stay some days in the Luberon because it's one of the most beautiful places we have never been.
Menerbes itself is a fascinating village sorrounded by green vineyards and beautiful country houses. So, I don't know your houses but you have my vote for Menerbes.
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 07:13 AM
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I'm going to say exactly what alex2 said - the area around Menerbes is much prettier than places close to Avignon. The closer to Avignon you get, there is more ugly commerce, not-so-pretty public housing, etc. Memerbes is surrounded by vineyards, lavender fields (not in bloom when you'll be there), and cute little villages.

Stu Dudley
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 07:56 AM
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Betty, I'd like to take you up on your offer to share your list of larger Provence houses. Our rather large family pulled off a very nice visit to Tuscany in 2005 and they may be looking for another area to visit. I've done a little preliminary search but would appreciate your efforts. Thanks, Paul
[email protected]
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 10:12 AM
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I didn't look at the websites or photos, but I agree with Stu and Alex. I would choose the one near Menerbes because I like that area much better and there doesn't seem any reason not to. I don't care about pools at all, though, so the one chateau having one wouldn't mean anything to me but might be good for others in your group.

I guess if you rent a fancy chateau, a $4000 deposit would make sense.

Here's some info on Ch de Gadagne, if you haven't seen it
http://www.provenceweb.fr/f/vaucluse...eufgadagne.htm

It's only a very small village, I wouldn't think it could be hard to get in and out. It does sound like a nice village from that description.
Menerbes is a little smaller, which surprised me (less than 5K inhabitants is too small for me, but I like places to go, restaurants, cafes, shops, etc.)
http://www.provenceweb.fr/e/vaucluse...s/menerbes.htm

Once I stayed in Pernes-les-Fontaines which was about 10K and it was about the right size for me, although even it only had about one decent restaurant right in town (plenty of pizza joints). Now Chateauneuf de Cadagne is practically right on the N100 going east from Avignon to Isle-sur-la-Sorgue. That would make getting on the highway convenient, but I don't think I'd like that as much -- that area just east of Avignon seems kind of flat, dull and hot to me (in the summer).
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Old Jan 3rd, 2006, 05:16 PM
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Thanks to all who have responded. It seems pretty much unanimous that we should go with the house near Menerbes and I must say that I soon found that I was hoping you would say that. I've e-mailed my folks with the descriptions and websites. So far, the only one who has responded also voted for Menerbes.

I probably should have said that I do know the Luberon area having stayed there in 2000 and in 2003. I guess I was just semi-seduced by the idea of staying in an authentic chateau. But with that security deposit, I'd be constantly afraid that someone would break something or spill wine on a sofa!

Macanimals, I'll e-mail you.
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