twenty ninth July 2015 • Places to Visit • Stephanie Donaldson
I’ve been on my travels once more – this time to the Loire Valley – a spot that’s expensive to my coronary heart. I spent a while there twenty years in the past and have been a number of occasions since and there are at all times previous haunts to revisit and discoveries to be made.
Chateau du Rivau
This small chateau at Lemere close to Chinon is about amongst fields of corn and surrounded by fourteen totally different themed gardens. It’s half medieval and half Renaissance and has the basic turreted towers of a fairy story fort that charms reasonably than intimidates. For the previous 18 years the restoration of the chateau and the creation of the gardens has been the work of Patricia Laigneau and her household who’ve turned it into a spot that mixes the normal with the quirky and the modern. The Courtyard incorporates a powerful potager which overflows with produce and is legendary for its autumn squashes and pumpkins. Caroline, Patricia’s daughter who took me around the backyard informed me that each one the meals grown within the potager is served at their restaurant.
There’s additionally an orchard, deep borders, a scented rose backyard, wooded walks with sculptures and even a quiet dell hung with hammocks the place guests can lie again and gaze up into the bushes. It’s all charming with an actual sense of Patricia’s guiding hand in the way it has been developed. Her private style shines by and though not the whole lot appealed to me I love her panache and assume that she and her household have completed a terrific job in making it a spot properly value visiting. www.loire-castle-rivau.com