Where to begin...
We booked this 'hotel' for one night before we headed back to England on the ferry at St Malo after a long road trip around France. We wanted somewhere that had parking and a little character so that was our reasons for choosing Chateau Hotel du Colombier.
The hotel was a little difficult to find as it's down a lot of country back roads and it isn't wonderfully sign posted. We had to rely on our Google map application on the iPhone which did get us there eventually. It is some what away from St Malo and you will need a car to access local amenities and attractions. There is however lots of free on-site parking but it's worth noting that there is no restaurant here and you're pretty much limited to driving into St Malo and parking up somewhere to find food.
First impressions were the place certainly looks grand but a little creepy somehow. The owners have tried to create some activities by the looks and have put a golf driving range on the main lawn which seemed a shame somehow as it didn't fit in very well with the grandeur of the place.
We were greeted by a very friendly lady who did seem a little eccentric but her attempts at English were welcomed and quite good. She showed us to our room and informed us breakfast was at 9am. As we were leaving at around 8am this was not very convenient and was the first indication that this was not a hotel but in fact, more of a B&B. I have never heard of a hotel having breakfast at such a specific time and considering we had paid for the breakfast as part of the package, felt a little ripped off. However as we were shown around the chateau lobby areas and the breakfast area we saw that all the cups and saucers were already set up... catching dust... ready for breakfast... nice! So it was probably a good thing we missed breakfast anyway. The other lobby rooms seemed very cluttered and extremely eccentric with oddities dotted everywhere. I honestly felt quite freaked out.
There is a lift in the 'hotel' which the owner seems very proud of. It was useful not to have to use the grand staircase and we were shown to our room. The room itself was spacious and clean, the decor was less creepy and had more of a fresh feel to it. It seems that the 'hotel' has installed central heating recently and new carpets (even though these were stained) so obviously the owners have tried to keep the chateau updated. The bathroom was clean and functional however it's style was very antique. I know we were staying in a chateau but somehow I felt I was staying in more a museum that a chateau, there was just something not quite right about the place. Very creepy. I just didn't really feel like using any of the facilities and I was glad we heading home the next day.
We were informed or rather told about locking the front door after the reception is closed. None of the owners live there so security is obviously very important. This however just made us feel quite uncomfortable, I certainly didn't like the thought of being the only guests staying there over-night so was glad to hear some other guests milling around the deserted place. We also had to pay there and then because no-one would be in until 9am and we were leaving at 8am.
I didnt get a good night's sleep really. The bed was comfy but I was half expecting some ghosts to come whailing in. All in all this whole place freaked me out, it is massively over-priced and is most definitely NOT a hotel. However the owners do seem to care about the place and do seem to be trying to make it lovely. It just hasn't quite got there yet.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nested in a 6 hectare park, 5 minutes by car of the nice beaches of Saint Malo, le Chateau Hotel du Colombier invites you to travel in time. This pleasure residence, constructed by Malouin, owner of a shipping company in 1715, kept its bygone beauty: its woodworks of oak & its nice central staircase, its pictures of the 18th century, rose garden, chapel & pond. It is an evocation of happiness. A practice of golf is now open. ... more less
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