Monday, January 20, 2014

French Winelands - Blaye... Chez Simon Self Catering Apartments

Nestled amongst the most eye pleasing vineyards is the town of Blaye.  A perfect place to stay when touring the infamous Bordeaux and Cognac regions.  We spent just under a week exploring the beauty of this area on route to Spain during our Summer vacation.

We will expand on the wine and cognac tours in the follow up blog posts so keep reading :-) This year as we were travelling with our baby, we wanted a family roadtrip which was not too tiresome and one that could incorporate stop overs which made it comfortable for both ourselves and our baby.  We must admit that road tripping within Europe is a pleasure, with many convenient facilities on route which makes the trip easy.  Each fuel garage we stopped at had fully equipped clean baby changing stations as well as bottle warming facilities.  Of course once you crossed into the border of France, the fragrance of freshly baked butter enriched pastries and croissants entice you to indulge and be merry.

For this trip, we chose a self catering option and this was purely because we were travelling with a baby and we've choosen to prepare our child's meals ourselves.  Call it bio friendly, anti preservatives etc but we were brought up on fresh, nutritious, homemade food only and therefore it is in our nature to do the same for our children.  Whilst planning our trip a few weeks prior, we came across Chez Simon.

Chez Simon, a home away from home was fantastic!  Both well positioned, the apartment block was a short walk from all that Blaye has to offer, and deep in the heart of the Bordeaux wine-lands which made it a fantastic central yet convenient place to stay.  Being a self service apartment, it was internally completely modern and very tastefully finished, with all the appliances and mod-cons that one could wish for.  We especially loved the fact that one could walk down to the early morning food markets to purchase the freshest of seafood, fruit. vegetables and of course breads, pastries, croissants to name a few then return to Chez Simon and prepare a delicious home cooked meal.  

Our apartment at Chez Simon was well stocked and perfect for our needs.  With a well stocked kitchen and the nice touch of being able to pick fresh herbs in the courtyard garden, made exploring french tastes and spices fun and easy.  Our one bedroom apartment was fully equipped with a stove, oven, dishwasher, washing machine, dryer, full media centre, basic appliances, gave you a feeling of a home away from home.  

Situated on the oldest street in the town of Blaye, Chez Simon is just 200 meters from the spectacular Citadel fortifications of Vauban, a World Heritage Site.  The town of Blaye is the perfect location from which to explore the Bordeaux wine lands with 10000 chateaux.

Chez Simon in our opinion, is definitely one of the best self catering facilities that we have stayed in thus far in Europe and we will definitely be revisiting in the near future.

Our overall rating is 4.5 out of 5 for value for money, location, cleanliness and comfort!

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