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“Castle living, Gourmet dining, NO dry cleaning available”
Review of Chateau de la Caze

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Chateau de la Caze
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Sainte-Enimie
San Antonio
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Castle living, Gourmet dining, NO dry cleaning available”
Reviewed 30 April 2013

Celebrating our anniversary with a driving trip through the backwoods of France. In planning the trip we decided to make a stop in a french national park and stay in a Castle called the Chateau de la Caze. Prior planning coordination with the hotel was excellent. My emails were quickly answered and when I asked the hotel rep (turned out to be the general manager Chantal) which of the Chateau's room would she recommend to her parents if they were visiting, she said "the Melchoir suite". Which we reserved and used for our three night stay.

The suite was located in one of the castle turrets on the highest level with a view from the bedroom out upon both the grounds on one side, the river tarn and the beautiful Gorge on a second side and a view of the side of the castle and the MOAT on the third side.

With certain exceptions (the restaurant manager Mark), the staff is comprised of very young, college aged kids who seem to be working their way through life with an adventure by working at the Chateau. It kind of felt like the staff on a cruise ship in some respects. So what you have is a great deal of good intention delivered awkwardly on occasion and, with the exception of the restaurant, a lack of in depth knowledge of the finer points of providing a top drawer room.

The setting is magnificent. The natural beauty is incredible. We left the castle just last Saturday - late april and there were few tourists in the area, which made navigating the tiny road that follows the tarn river through the Gorge relatively easy.

While living in a Castle is scenic and an experience, the chateau cannot be construed to be a five star facility. The mattresses aren't the most comfortable. The sheets are not the fine quality you would find in better hotels and the furniture in the room is awkward (but they ARE period antiques). there really was no place to sit and read or work comfortably. so the facilities themselves in our particular suite were scenic but not at the top of the comfort scale. I feel a bit petty saying that considering there were people and families all along the Gorge valley sleeping in TENTS and sleeping bags on the GROUND. No comparison with THAT.

The absolute highest point of our stay was the dinner in the restaurant. We had a waitress named "Mel". she shortened her French name to make it more pronounceable for the Americans. She was a French canadian. Our lack of ability in the French Language has occasionally resulted in big surprises during restaurant meals (what we THOUGHT we were ordering and what we RECEIVED). She spoke English like an American, completely down to the colloquialisms used properly - if you're reading this and you're BRITISH, you might disagree that her language was flawless, but for an American it was perfect.

The CHEF is a genius. We had the finest meal we have ever eaten in France at the Chateau (and we've traveled in France frequently). The price of that meal reflected it's quality. I could have skipped the meal and bought a small used CAR with the savings. I exaggerate, of course, but it WAS seriously expensive. We had a few meals down the road in Saint Enimie during our stay and just as a comparison, we purchased two main course entrees for less than the price of one appetizer at the Chateau.

I mentioned before that they really make an effort to insure their guests are happy. Here's an example. We're traveling by car on this trip. The evening before we arrived we were staying at a Chateau several hours north - also in the french countryside. I asked the concierge at the previous property to phone the Chatea de la Caze and find out if we could have a few things dry cleaned while there at the property. He came back to me and said they would be happy to assist with having my dry cleaning done while there. I was thinking, this is like a traditional hotel and they have a laundry service. Anyone who has ever been to France and has had dry cleaning done, knows that it is not something the french use frequently and when they do use it, it costs them a pretty penny. When we arrived we gave our dry cleaning to the people in the reception office and they said someone would drive it to town and have it cleaned for us - I thought "town" was the village just down the road (15 minutes). It turned out that the dry cleaning facility was nearly an hour drive each way (we found out when we insisted on retrieving it ourselves - it appeared it might not be finished before our departure - which caused a minor meltdown on my part). Probably the proper thing for the hotel staff to have done in this circumstance would have been to tell us "sorry, we don't do dry cleaning".

We had no idea it would be such a project for them until we insisted on picking it up ourselves (whether it was ready or not). The bottom line is that they bent over backwards to accommodate us and did it quietly without sharing what an inconvenience it was for them (not to mention the cost of gasoline for that drive - to the young lady who delivered it for cleaning).

so in summary, wonderful customer service filled with great intentions, a remote and isolated experience - quiet as a churchmouse at night with only the gurgling sounds of the passing river to lull you to sleep in your semi-comfortable, non lux bedding and sheets, fantastic FOOD worthy of a trip all on it's own.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank LenM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (29)
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English first
West Yorkshire
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 November 2012

I stayed here for 2 nights in July whilst on a driving holiday through France with my husband and 7 year-old son.

The hotel is beautiful in a stunning setting. We stayed in a separate building to the main chateau, next to the swimming pool with beautiful views over the chateau and Gorges du Tarn. Whilst a stay here is not cheap, the service is impeccable so in my view it is worth every penny.

We had dinner in the main restaurant for both nights, the food was delicious with a well-stocked wine cellar. We have eaten in a number of michelin star restaurants and the restaurant at the Chateau de la Caze was verging on that level of quality and service.

The hotel arranged for us to canoe down the Gorges du Tarn leaving from the hotel. Whilst it is relatively easy to arrange this yourselves, it was nice to have this facility and to our surprise we weren't charged over the odds for it either.

I would love to go back here, we left feeling thoroughly relaxed and spoilt.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank DB1553
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 October 2012

Very good accommodation in an enchanting spot. However, the Chateau is located 8km out of Sainte Enimie and is therefore not suited to those without a vehicle who are walking in the Gorge Du Tarn. Our room in the farm house was very nicely presented and spotlessly clean. The grounds of the chateau were beautiful. Breakfast was expensive and very sweet!. Our evening meal in the restaurant was also expensive however the food was good. At no point were we alerted to the fact that the Chateau is 8km out of the village - this made things very difficult as we were travelling on foot.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank mezzy007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Halifax, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
95 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 September 2012

My friend found the chateau while searching a back roads route from Avignon. While it was a bit over our budget for accommodations, after checking their website I told him to book it. WE WERE NOT DISAPPOINTED. It exceeded our expectations. We checked in and both couples were placed in rooms with bathrooms in the turrets. After a tour we had wine on the terrace overlooking the pool and the gorge (which in itself is spectacular) when suddenly two Mirage fighter jets from the French Air force screamed over the gorge. WHAT A WELCOME!!! An evening chill was quickly forgotten with pre dinner drinks in front of the fireplace in the bar. Dinner in the dining room was superb. We may not be Kings and Queens but we felt like we were when we left.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Bill K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London UK
Level 6 Contributor
237 reviews
71 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 110 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 September 2012

This was our second visit to this wonderfully situated chateau. The first was 37 years ago when on our first holiday together. My husband had booked one night here as a treat between two parts of our French holiday in more modest surroundings. The setting was as romantic and wonderful as I had remembered but, I suppose having stayed in several other up-market hotels since, the fantasy did not quite live up to the memories. The first jolt came with dying plants around the door and foetid water in part of the moat. Then, stepping inside, the garish and rather crude paintings all by the same artist that decorate almost every wall, struck a really strange and false note. Why would anyone choose art so out of keeping with the surroundings and style of a building? Our Junior Suite Jeanne had lovely views over the river and the pool but in a luxury hotel a 4ft 6in bed is just not acceptable. Sad also about the lack of a proper shower but a lovely deep bath with gushing hot water made up for a lot. Service on the terrace for pre-dinner drinks was very slow but after that things improved and dinner was very good, although being seated at the darkest table in the room behind a very large party of German tourists was less fun. The swimming pool was freezing but the setting, chairs, decking and other pool arrangements very good and we spent a lovely hour sunning ourselves before leaving the following day. Was I glad to come back? Of course. It was charming and delightful and I would happily stay here again, but my experience is that there is nearly always something about French hotels that is a bit off-beam...and they say the English are eccentric.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Highgateglobetrotter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level 6 Contributor
90 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 September 2012

We stayed at the Chateau de la Caze for three nights in early September 2012. The property is amazingly located on the banks of the Tarn river, a view which can be enjoyed both from the pool and the terrace. We stayed in Guillame, a really lovely room and although the view is over the car park it's really not a hardship. The Chateau itself is an ancient building with all the charming quirks that come with age - cobbled corridors and picturesque but tiny windows onto the bathroom. There is ample free parking. The pool (unheated) is clean with a pleasant range of seating around it. The service was excellent - charming, warm and friendly, with some personal recommendations from the waiting staff. We had one dinner in the restaurant which was excellent quality - delicious food; probably too rich to eat there every night but lovely for a treat. If we come back to the area I would definitely come back for a special treat, until then it's being recommended to all of my friends who appreciate a luxury experience!

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Irmani
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 August 2012 via mobile

We have stayed here before a couple of years ago and were blown away by the beauty of the surroundings and the chateau itself. We only stayed for a single night on that trip so were looking forward to another stay, even booking the same room. The chateau is still as beautiful as we remembered, unfortunately the service did not match up to our expectations at all. Some examples included staff watching my wife struggle up the stone stairway with a heavy case and not offering to help at all, starting to polish the tables and chairs around us whilst we were still eating breakfast. The hotel offered to bring our cases down for us when we left (shocking I know!), but it was very literal... the case being unceremonious dumped at the bottom of the stairs even though our car was just outside of the main doors with the boot open. My "favourite" moment has to be when my wife asked for a knife a breakfast having used the one on the table to eat her fruit with; the waiter just pointed to the dirty knife and said "you have got one". In summary, this is a great place to look out over the river, say "bonjour" to the passing river traffic before leaving your room to be greeted by the Grumpy Gang. One last point, if you are not excellent at time keeping, steer clear... You have to specify the time you want breakfast the night before, and the breakfast express is more punctual than the 07:15 to London Euston.

Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
6 Thank Matthew D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Chateau de la Caze

Property: Chateau de la Caze
Address: route des Gorges du Tarn, 48210 Sainte-Enimie, France
Region: France > Occitanie > Lozere > Sainte-Enimie
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Sainte-Enimie
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Chateau de la Caze 4*
Number of rooms: 16
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Also Known As:
Chateau De La Caze Hotel Sainte-Enimie

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