Twelve members of my family, 10 adults and two children, spent a week at Chateau de Siorac in August 2013. It was wonderful. The owners live in a house in the grounds but don't be put off - they are on-hand to trouble shoot any problems but otherwise you wouldn't know they're there as they leave you alone entirely. There is no list of do's and don'ts, you really are just free to treat the property as your own. We felt able to relax and come and go as we pleased.
The kitchen is very well equipped, with loads of cutlery, crockery, glasses and pots and pans to cater for a large group. Everything in the house works well and we had everything we needed. There is such a lot of space that we never felt on top of each other. The bedrooms are huge with lots of hanging and drawer space. Since all the bedrooms are doubles, the owners very kindly provided two camp beds for the kids, which we set up in one of the dressing rooms and this worked perfectly. The bathrooms are all lovely - four of them are in the turrets. Towels and toilet rolls are provided but you need to bring all your own toiletries, including hand soap.
The outdoor dining area is lovely and very close to the kitchen at the back of the house - there was no photo and so we didn't know what to expect but were thrilled to find a dining table to seat 12, covered by a wrought-iron gazebo. We had lunch and dinner out there every day and made good use of the gas BBQ.
The pool is very close to the house and gets the sun all day long. It has 12 sunloungers with cushions and we were really pleased to find a huge pile of beach towels in the house for our use. The lawn to the front is great for running about and kicking a ball, and the area at the back of the house is laid with gravel which is perfect for a game of boules (there are two sets of boules at the house), and is also where you'll find the ping-pong table. The former driveway to the house extends along the flat to stables where the owner keeps two beautiful horses, which are very friendly, and some goats! The grounds mainly extend up a hillside behind the house and aren't really suitable for anything but walking as they are woodland with rocky and brambly paths. (We had brought the kids' bikes with us but they couldn't cope with the paths - however, the house is close to the river where you can easily walk, run or cycle).
The house is walkable to the local village where there is a bakery and restaurant/cafe. It's a 10 min drive to a supermarket and about a 15 min drive to the lovely town of Perigueux with restaurants, market, museums and lots of unique shops.
All in all the perfect place for a large group to stay. I can't recommend it enough.
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