Leela

Escape to the tranquillity of this lovingly restored home in the foothills of the French Pyrenees.  Situated in a peaceful French hamlet, 600 m above sea level, Leela makes for a perfect base from which to explore the wild and beautiful Ariège.  Romantic, magical and calm.  Come, let go, unwind and relax. Ideal location for  holidays in the Pyrenees

Over a decade Leela has been sensitively restored using ecological building techniques and materials.  Leela resonates a beautiful energy, full of light and warmth; cosy in winter and cool in summer.  The old wood and natural stone are offset by the beautiful curves of the simple plastered stone walls.

Passing under the charming stone carving above the arched front door the entrance is paved in original stone slabs mined in the hills locally.  Stop and rest on the chaise longue or continue down into the cosy living room, with a wood burning stove at its heart.  From here either climb the original wooden stairs to the first floor or continue straight on into the open plan kitchen/dining area.  There is a second woodburning stove in the dining area, which fires the central heating.  French windows lead to the small courtyard garden.

The garden is surrounded by climbing scented roses, sweat peas, clematis, lavender and abundant herbs, to be used by all.  A perfect place to relax in the hammock with the sound of trickling water falling into the pond.  There is also a deck for outdoor eating and a BBQ.

Continuing past the dining area is a utility room/kitchen, with washing machine and dishwasher.  Leela is well equipped with gas oven and hob, toaster, kettle, microwave, a small fridge and a small fridge freezer, rice maker, fondue, juicer, iron, ironing board, hairdryers, a varied selection of books for all tastes, TV for use with DVD player or laptop and either CD player or ipod docking system.  WIFI can be activated as required – otherwise it is a WIFI free zone, a rare luxury.  If requested a telephone can be left in Leela, and calls to landlines in most countries are free of charge.  Please enquire if anything else is needed.

First Floor:  The master bedroom has a lovely private balcony with rambling roses, overlooking an enchanting, ever changing, wild, valley.  The blue bedroom is pretty and light with a king sized bed that can be transformed into a twin if preferred.  An extra single futon can be added to this room if requested, making it into a triple.  Two cots and high chairs are also available.

Beautiful linen, towels, ecological soaps and domestic products are provided.  During the cold months wood and electricity consumed are charged at the end of the stay, at cost price.

Roof top yoga is available and retreats can be assisted if required.

Whether you are looking for a romantic hideaway for two or a special family holiday, Leela offers much to delight your senses.

Rates & Contact Details

The weekly rate for Leela is from 300 Euros per week  in low season to 700 Euros per week in peak season, but it can be rented by the day (Minimum 3 day stay ) for between 50 Euros in low season to 120 Euros in peak season. Please contact Sarah on  sarahjdavidson@hotmail.com or phone Sarah – international calls on  (0033) 581 15 83 20  or from France 05 81 15 83 20

The Midi-Pyrenees / Ariège region

Wild and beautiful the Ariège is often referred to as France’s best kept secret. Situated in South-Western France it is the most untouched and magnificent part of the French Pyrenees and is home to a vast population of plant, insect, bird and animal life. The possibilities to dive into the natural environment are endless, from river and lake swimming, to walks for all levels of fitness, (including the Chemin de la Liberté, the pilgrims route to Santiago Di Compostela and the well know GR routes) to horseback riding, canoeing, painting ….

With the wealth of historic, archaeological and cultural interest found in the Ariège it’s so easy to feel transported to another age long ago. Prehistoric man left his mark in various grottos and caves, including Niaux and Le Maz D’Azil. Fantastic medieval settlements include Carcassonne, St Lizier and Mirepoix. There is a legacy of religious history seen in the cathedrals and churches throughout the area, not to forget the story left by the Cathar people, with castles including Monsegur open for viewing.

Various picturesque ski resorts can be reached within 90 minutes, including Ax Bonascre and Guzet Neige and the higher resorts found in Andorra are easily accessible. For winter holidays it is not unknown to be able to play golf in the morning in beautiful sunshine and ski in the afternoon. Fabulous!

Stages 8 and 9 of the Tour de France will be passing close by this year on the 6 and 7 July, 2013.

The Immediate Area

Situated in the midst of the Séronais National Park, Leela lies between Foix and St Girons, conveniently placed close to some of the most spectacular views of the Pyrenees and to many of the attractions mentioned above.

Within a radius of 30 minutes from Leela there is:
Foix, with its magnificent castle and various museums; St Lizier, a UNESCO site and host to a multitude of fabulous classical concerts which take place in its cathedral, St Girons with one of France’s most colourful, vibrant markets; a challenging and beautiful golf course; Le Maz D’Azil with its impressive grotto and buzzing market; Labouiche, Europe’s longest underground river trip; Le Merens Equestrian centre; the cycle path that runs between Foix and St Girons, which can be accessed 2.7 km from the front door; rivers and lakes to swim, many walks to explore, including the ancient tracks in the hills immediately around Laborie ……………. the list is endless.

Le Golf de l’Ariège, only 20 minutes away, is a championship 18 hole golf course with magnificent views of the Pyrenees. It also has a fabulous compact 9 hole course for a more leisurely round, a driving range, putting green, club house and restaurant.

Castelnau Durban, situated at 2.7km from Leela, is as far as you need to go to enjoy the traditional French ambiance, sitting under the plane trees watching the petanque matches being fought out by all ages. Here you will also find two bars, an excellent traditional restaurant, Chez Victor, busy with local people, a small Tuesday market, a tiny post office, an antique tennis court and a rather comic local shop.

Rental Rates

April/May £55 per day – minimum rental period 3 days:   June – £60 – minimum rental period 3 days:   July –  August – £80 per day – minimum rental period 7 days:   September – £65 per day – minimum rental period 3 days:  October – £60 per day – minimum rental period 3 Days:  November – March (Except Christmas / New Year )- £50 per day – minimum rental period 3 days:  Christmas / New Year – £70  per day – minimum rental period 5 days.

Booking & Enquiries

For further information,availability and booking please contact Sarah Davidson
By email on sarahjdavidson@hotmail.com
or by phone from outside France 00 33 581 15 83 20
or inside France 05 81 15 83 20
See below for present availability, which we try to keep up to date as soon as bookings are made and deposits paid