Guest Reviews

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Reviewed by : Pascal

Cap-d'Ail (France)

Date of stay: 2018-08-11

August week

A superb spot, away from it alll, calm and perfect for relaxing, and wonderfully ooked after by the adorable Marie, who can't do enough for her guests!

Reviewed by : Marie-Anne

Le Refuge (Ménerbes)

Date of stay: 2018-08-25

An excellent stay

Discovering the Luberon from the Refuge has been a beautiful experience. Ideally located for those who love peace and nature, the warm welcome of Marie is a bonus. We were delighted with our stay and would love to come back!

Reviewed by : La Tete Rouge

Rochester, NY USA

Date of stay: 2017-05-13

A Hidden Gem

I eyed this rental for several years before booking - I was mesmerized by how fascinating & magical the setting appeared to be. On my first trip to visit Marie in 2015, I was not disappointed. The photos cannot begin to evoke the true experience of the place. In addition to the rental itself, there are extensive gardens and various levels to explore both above and beneath the property. I immediately fell in love with it - so much so that I've returned every year since, each year deepening my friendship with Marie. The accommodations are very well appointed, and the exterior spaces - upper and lower resting places so tranquil for those days one wishes to just luxuriate in feeling truly at peace, so removed from the hurried pace of modern life. Marie has a heart of gold and is so helpful from the moment one arrives - with many great insights and suggestions with regards to things to see and do - in addition to generous time lingering in shared conversation over a glass of wine. Though off the beaten track, requiring faith in taking the various rough roads to enter the property, one realizes its those various secret roads that keep the property away from the throes of other tourists. That said, Menerbes is just ten miinutes away and easily accessed with its regular market on Thursday mornings. This location works well as a base to venture to other areas such as Gordes, Rouissillon, Lourmarins, Bonnieux, LaCoste (just across the valley), Oppede, Oppede le Vieux (a fav of mine) and so many of the dear hilltop towns of this area. I actually feel more at oeace while visiting Marie and Le Refuge than I do at my home in the States. If it is an experience like no other. Though I missed my trip this year owing to the passing of my husband, I can't wait to return next Spring. I've enjoyed the experience in May - with bountiful blooms of so many different flowers - as well in September - when the summer crowds have subsided and the golden glow of oncoming fall hints a bit cooler temperatures at night but still very warm days for adventure. To me, Le Refuge is a bit of heaven on Earth. Highly recommend - you won't be disappointed!!!

Reviewed by : Tony & Amanda

Surbiton

Date of stay: 2018-09-01

A Special Place

We spent a wonderful week here at 'Le Refuge', the house is so pretty, situated down a secluded track it is peaceful with sunshine all day from the various seating areas . Ideally located for visiting Menerbes and the other beautiful hilltop villages by car or bicycle or you can walk to Menerbes in 45 mins. Marie is a wonderful warm, funny and interesting lady and takes great pride in her little slice of the Luberon. We were sad to leave and would love to visit again in the future.

Reviewed by : Gordons

New Zealand

Date of stay: 2018-05-06

Highly recommended

We give this property 4 stars only because there is very little that is always perfect, and if there was it would be boring. This property was accurately described in its listing. We chose it because we like a rural background at times and those weird rock formations forming semi caves have always fascinated us. The property was perfectly clean and well maintained and a bonus was the nearby presence of a charming, helpful landlady. Unless you are young, and extremely fit a car is essential. Our only regret was that we did not discover this property about 30 years ago when we could have made more use of the area for long walks and cycling. However we made the most of every day by exploring unkown parts of Provence, revisiting those we knew and liked and "just being" in Le Refuge and enjoying the lovely hillside gardens in utter peace and quiet. I would recommend it to anyone who would would make the most of these special attributes

Reviewed by : Anne

Netherlands

Date of stay: 2018-06-28

peaceful Refuge

We stayed several times in Le Refuge in Menerbes and each time we were surprised how the peaceful this location is in the mid of an area crowded by tourists. You experience nature on each spot of the property; falcons, all kind of lovely birds, plants lots of flowers and don't forget Marie, the owner who keeps the greens and flowery terraces 'impec' and informs you about the best places to be in Luberon. Highly recommended!

Reviewed by : Waterbabies

Cape Town South Africa

Date of stay: 2016-09-15

A little Paradise, never to be forgotten!!

Dear Mariie We stayed in your beautiful home many years ago. In fact, we were one of your first visitors. We found your little paradise by chance when one of your neighbours' sent their daughter to show us how to get to you when you had recently opened! How we loved staying with you! We have never forgotten your warm hospitality and friendship, the beautiful cottage (and hammock) under the ancient stone shelter, your lovely vegetable garden & vineyards. You even sent us on our way with the most delicious tomato and basil terrine which you had so kindly made yourself! We couldn't find you on the internet so that we could send our son to stay with you until we searched on Google Maps and Voila!! We found you!! So maybe our son, Jean-Paul will call on your soon! We hope you are in good health and from the reviews, still most charming. May God shower you with blessings and we hope to visit you again one day!! Marcel & Charmaine PS I made up the date of the review because we were there over 10 years ago!!!

Reviewed by : Diane

England

Date of stay: 2018-06-16

Utter bliss

If you are lucky enough to find Le Refuge on the internet you won’t regret booking. We spent a week of utmost peace and tranquility at this accommodation which has been lovingly restored by Marie who is a most welcoming host. She has done an absolutely amazing job of making her home and accommodation next to it a place of serenity and beauty. Laying in the hammock listening to only the birds and wildlife whilst looking at the greenery and flowers and smelling the jasmine bushes on a daily was bliss. Well done Marie. You are an inspiration to others and we wish you the best for the future. Until we meet again ! Diane and David

Reviewed by : Jo and Chris

Oxfordshire UK

Date of stay: 2017-09-02

A hidden gem

If you find this little gem when you are searching the web you are in luck! It is a delightful and unusual and full of character. Marie has given a lot of thought to aesthetics, both inside and outside. The rooms are cosy and clean, and then outside there are several outdoor areas, each with their own style to be enjoyed. There is true peace and quiet here. Marie is friendly and fun but never obtrusive. The local area is a joy - so much to see - hilltop villages, markets, beautiful scenery and plenty of places to go walking or cycling and of course, eating! It was perfect for the two of us - highly recommended.

Reviewed by : Peter

USA

Date of stay: 2016-05-07

Very special place

I knew the first time I saw your web site of Le Refuge I had to visit. It is beautiful place built with a lot of love and patience. Marie was very kind and helpful to make me feel welcome. I am glad I made the effort to live for a week in this unique place. Once you stay here you will have great memories. Keep building on to your dream, Marie. Merci beaucoup. USA Rhode Island

Reviewed by : Two Aussies

Australia

Date of stay: 2016-05-14

Wonderful week in Provence

We had a wonderful week staying at "Le Refuge " near Menerbes. It is a beautiful place, peaceful and relaxing. Marie was a lovely host with such interesting stories to tell. We loved the garden and all the outdoor terraces to sit on or have our meals. We hired bikes from Sun E-Bike and rode to all the perched villages nearby. Not a problem for 2 reasonably fit 70 year olds! Would definitely recommend "Le Fefuge".

Reviewed by : Ellie

England

Date of stay: 2015-09-19

A quirky find that surpassed all expectations

The Refuge was my favourite holiday accommodation ever and my only complaint was having to leave!! The Outisde: The property is in a rural location with beautiful views of the surrounding woods. The setting of the house built into the side of the cliff is not only unusul, but the cliff face provided warmth on the chillier mornings as we were sheltered from the Mistral winds, and had it rained would have provided protection from getting wet whilst still being able to sit outside. The sunlight reached the property from mid morning onwards and stayed until the end of the evening, and because of the multiple seating options you could move into or out of the sun as desired. The variety of outside furniture was brillliant and included tables and chairs perfect for eating at, and comfortable relaxing options such as a hammock, sunbed or whicker chairs. There were options for outdoors cooking including the BBQ directly outside the property, or a large BBQ built into a concrete table just past the owners house. The outside space was also adorned with an array of solar power and electric lights which created a lovely ambience. There are steps built into the cliff leading up to the terrace for some amazing views. The inside: The inside of the property was very comfortable. The kitchen is small, but functional, and had adequate cooking facilites. There was ample hot water for showers. The bed was very comfortable. All in all the house is very homely, but not full of clutter as some places are. Both the inside and outside were very clean. The owner: Marie was very welcoming and friendly. She was not intrusive, but was there on hand if we needed anything. She's slightly crazy, but in a good way!! :-) We would definitely recommend this property and loved staying here.

Reviewed by : joan and simon

Devon, UK

Date of stay: 2015-07-14

A very special place

We were intrigued by the look of the place on this website, and in reality it surpassed the photos! It is a place that has been very carefully cared for, very clean, and full of attention to detail with love and care. Bags of character and Provencal style. Marie, the owner, is lovely - kind and so helpful! The rock that the house is built into is like a protective hand curling over it- a very special place indeed, with its history. The terraces are fantastic, and again nothing spared in giving lots of stylish personality to all of the outside spaces too. Definitely recommended!

Reviewed by : Lisa and Michael

Cornwall

Date of stay: 2014-08-09

'A real find'

Menerbes, 'Le Refuge' and its charming owner Marie couldn't have provided us with a better introduction to Provence. We had a wonderful week here and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to friends and family!

Reviewed by : Michel

Zurich

Date of stay: 2013-04-19

A Wonderful Place of Refuge

In this marvelous spot we felt at home instantly not only because of the unique location but also because of the ever so amiable host. This simple but very well maintained small two-storey house offers lots of outdoor space (terrace with sunlit as well as shady corners).

Reviewed by : Joe

Burke, VA. USA

Date of stay: 2014-08-24

Peace & Quiet at the La Refuge

We were very pleased that the property was out in the Provence country and not in a village. It provided privacy that was welcomed. The property was well maintained and clean. Our host was available if needed. The villa was located about 4 or 5 miles from Menerbes, Provence. This provided access to all the small villages within easy driving distance. The design was cleverly built in the side of a rock cliff that provides a very nice setting for the hammock to hang underneath. There exist a long history about this property, which made it very interesting. There were many restaurants to chose from, all with good food and drink. I strongly recommend the property to any adventurous couple the wants to avoid the hustle bustle of a city life. We certainly enjoyed our stay at the Le Refuge!

Reviewed by : Roy and Berit

Halmstad, Sweden

Date of stay: 2014-08-30

Le Refuge in Provence

A small paradise deep in the woods. Very hospitable, clean and tidy. A relaxing place with nice villages in the surroundings. If we would like to come back? -Yes!

Reviewed by : Juliet & George

Le Refuge

Date of stay: 2014-07-05

Natural and unique - a place to recharge body and soul.

Le Refuge is a natural sanctuary of great beauty. If you are a lover of the natural world then this is the place for you. Le Refuge is uniquely situated at the end of a woodland track, tucked beneath a softly weathered limestone cliff. After the initial excitement of our discovery of such a remarkable place we quickly settled in to enjoy the wonderful landscape and wildlife. Did a river shape the rock? Did prehistoric man enjoy this natural sanctuary too? Marie lives nearby in her stone cottage. Marie is the perfect host, ensuring your privacy and very kindly allowing you to share her beautiful gardens and hidden valley with you. A very special place. Thank you Marie. We are returning next year to Le Refuge and to see Provence in Springtime.

Reviewed by : Mimi

Alaska

Date of stay: 2014-05-10

Charmed...

We were completely charmed by the beauty, the sense of history, and the personality of our lovely hostess Marie. Out stay at Le Refuge was a welcome break in a hectic travel schedule. The surrounding region with its many hilltop towns and broad valleys of vineyards gave us plenty of interesting sites and meals! Marie was a wonderful hostess and guide to the region. We really enjoyed learning how she had worked to make this abandoned site --basically an old cliff dwelling -- into the unusual, comfortable, cosy retreat that it is today.

Reviewed by : Sally and David

United Kingdom

Date of stay: 2014-07-12

A UNIQUE AND VERY SPECIAL PLACE

If you are looking for a place to stay that is unique and a true taste of Provencial rural life, and for a holiday you'll never forget for all the right reasons, then Le Refuge is for you! It is a tranquil, beautiful place nestling under a cliff surrounded by wonderful countryside, with comfortable seating and eating areas, plus a hammock, with a choice of sun or shade. You would think you were miles from anywhere but in fact Menerbes is only a 5-10 drive away and is a very pretty village with good restaurants and cafes. Le Refuge has been created as a ' labour of love' over many years by Marie, the owner,who lives nearby and is a lovely, friendly lady; on hand if required for information etc. but discreet and unobtrusive also, the perfect combination. The facilities are all as described, very clean and well maintained with lots of extra artistic touches added by Marie, such as the lighting in different parts of the courtyard garden which create a magical atmosphere in the evenings. We found we lived outside in this area for the entire fortnight as the weather was hot most of the time. Even when we had one torrential downpour, most of the courtyard stays dry because of the overhanging cliff! All in all we are delighted to highly recommend this property for people looking for a holiday that incorporates peace, beauty and that timeless quality that is found at ' Le refuge '.

Reviewed by : Pascal

France

Date of stay: 2012-08-10

A week in paradise

If for your next vacation you really want to relax, far from the crowds, and discover places and landscapes of a rare beauty, I know the place you need! It’s in Menerbes, in the Luberon. It is here that I spent one of the best weeks of my life. Le Refuge is a beautiful place, out of time and benefitting from a wonderful owner, Marie. Breakfasts on the terrace, sunbathing in the natural amphitheatre on the cliff behind the house, with a breeze and the song of cicadas, reading in the hammock, dozing outside. At night after dinner, back to the hammock under a sky full of stars. In brief, I spent a week in paradise.

Reviewed by : Craig & Isabelle

NZ and Australia

Date of stay: 2012-04-06

Magical Refuge

Thank you for your kindness in sharing your beautiful home. You are an amazing woman and you should be very proud of the effort and work you have put in to this home We have discovered the lovely area around Menerbes – so peaceful and beautiful. Hope to visit again the future and we will tell our family and friends to visit Le Refuge!

Reviewed by : Lisa and Stephen

Toronto

Date of stay: 2013-07-18

Truly a special place

We have traveled a fair amount and always put a lot of care into choosing where we stay. We expected a lot from "The Refuge" based on what we saw from the photos online when we booked, and happily, the reality exceeded our expectations. This is truly a special place, whose modest price belies its charms. Though you are a very short drive from Menerbes and near to all the other hill towns in the Luberon, you feel a world away from the tourist crowds when you arrive at this natural sanctuary, hidden away at the end of a small country road. The cliffside location is striking, and the indoor and outdoor spaces have been designed with care and creativity to make the most of its unique setting. It was a great pleasure preparing our meals in the cosy kitchen (taking advantage of the terrific produce, cheeses, charcuterie, etc, etc found in the local markets), and dining on the terrace, flanked by climbing roses and jasmine, listening to birdsong and watching the sunset. The greatest pleasure of all was getting to know Marie, the owner and creator of the place. She is an intelligent, sophisticated ex-Parisienne with a warm and generous heart, the soul of an artist, and a wonderful sense of fun. Besides giving us the benefit of her significant knowledge of the area and her discerning taste in local restaurants and places to visit, she took excellent care of us and proved to be a true guardian angel when we were faced with an unexpected health issue. I look forward fondly to when we can return to see her again -- and in the meantime, I'm recommending "The Refuge" to everyone who I care about.