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“Comfortable hotel at a superb location overlooking the Dordogne River”
Review of Hotel l'Esplanade

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Hotel l'Esplanade
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Domme
Certificate of Excellence
Chicago, Illinois
Level 6 Contributor
117 reviews
55 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“Comfortable hotel at a superb location overlooking the Dordogne River”
Reviewed 27 July 2014

The L’Esplanade is located at the top of the town of Domme and overlooks the Dordogne River several hundred feet below. The views from the terrace that surrounds the hotel are marvelous. One can see across the valley to the hills far beyond, with homes and farm fields down below.

The hotel itself is one of the nicest three-star restaurants in which we have stayed. The hotel staff were unfailingly courteous and helpful. When we arrived, Sophie (who is the owner) greeted us warmly and with a great welcome. All of the hotel employees were friendly and courteous on all occasions.

Our room was on the third floor, which is the top floor of this hotel. For those who may have mobility problems, there is no elevator (and I wonder whether that is the principal reason that the L’Esplanade has only a three-star rating). Our room itself was spacious enough, and the armoire and cabinets were large enough for us to completely unpack our clothes for a four-night stay. The bed was comfortable.

The bathroom was unusually spacious, with a large shower having a “rain forest” shower head. We were surprised that there was only one sink, as there would have been plenty of room for a two-sink vanity. Nevertheless, we had lots of room on the vanity to store our cosmetics.

Wifi was free, but we had some difficulties in using it. It seems that the hotel has only a set number of Wifi connections, so when many people are already logged into the system, it is not possible for a “newcomer” to connect. While this was not a constant problem, we did experience a few occasions when we were unable to access the internet. I would suggest that the hotel owner address and resolve this issue.

The hotel offered a buffet breakfast with a limited selection of items (some fruits, cereals, breads, meats and cheeses). In addition, we could and did enjoy made-to-order eggs and never went hungry. During our stay, we had dinner twice at the hotel restaurant and it was excellent. We would highly recommend that visitors to the hotel take advantage of the excellent cuisine that the L’Esplanade restaurant offers.

I would be remiss if I did not mention that Domme is a wonderful place to stay while visiting many of the tourist sights in the Dordogne region. The town itself is perched on a promontory above the Dordogne River, and it is an easy drive to other towns that a visitor might want to tour. The town itself has several very good restaurants, so one is not confined to eating dinner at the same place every night. More importantly, because the town is relatively small geographically, it is a short walk from any nearby restaurant to the hotel—no need for a “designated driver”, which means that all of us could enjoy a glass or two of wine without having to worry.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank silverbrian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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283 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Value
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (68)
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English first
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
120 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 July 2014

Although a little old fashioned, the views from this hotel make up for any shortcomings. They are truly fabulous, overlooking the Dordogne Valley.
Staff are very helpful and we were grateful for the assistance with luggage to the top floor, as there is no lift.
They have an excellent restaurant and dining on the terrace overlooking the valley is quite an experience. While the food is very good, it is quite pricey, which forced us to eat out on our second night in Domme.
The area is quite outstanding with lots to see and do. Would certainly consider a return visit.

Room Tip: Ask for a room overlooking the valley.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank RonP365
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Montana
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 July 2014

This was one of our favorite hotels in France. Although the rooms themselves are nicely appointed, they are not lavish. Pricing for the hotel is very reasonable. But the views are fabulous! We also appreciated the staff. There was one staff member who went the extra mile to help the guests (the hostess). She spoke English fluently and helped all the guests at the restaurant understand the menus and make recommendations. She also took the time to answer questions not only about the area but other areas on our travel route. The restaurant did not disappoint - expensive but worth the money. The fillet of beef with truffles and foie gras and the mackerel were fabulous. Would certainly go back.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a view as well as a table in the restaurant with a view. We had rooms 1 and 2.
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Amy015
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
St Albans, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
78 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 July 2014

Stayed here for 6 nights late June 2014. Wishing a central location to tour the Dordogne area from we chose The Esplanade based on TA reviews .... and very accurate they were: fantastic views and fantastic food prices! No problem, we ate out and enjoyed the views. Maybe if the Esplanade put on a plate de jour at the going rate they would entice a few more diners .... or maybe they do not wish to be seen to appeal to the common tourist!

Parking: no problem (in June at least). The pay car parks by the Hotel are free from 18.00 to (I think) 11.00 and given the nearby streets where parking is free I never paid. When the tourists leave for the day I just moved the car to outside the Hotel ready for the morning.

Location: Domme is central to many lovely towns (Sarlat, Montpazier, Beynac, Racamadour, Cahors etc and the Gardens of Marqueysac - a must). I do warn that the myriad roads from Domme are more like cart tracks and be very wary of the verges if passing traffic.

The Hotel: very very old style French which does have charm ... but no lift, chipped enamel and flimsy plastic beakers in the loo, loose rugs on the walkways - a ready trip hazard. Beds - lovely hard mattress which led to wonderful night's sleeps; AC - never needed it, just left the window open. There is a private garden owned by the Hotel with secluded seats and access to grottes - just ask for the key at Reception - in our six days we were the only ones to bother. W-fi was available but after day 1 my access was refused, Reception were not exactly helpful and I couldn't be bothered progressing it ... Esplanade, just a hint, if you are going to use 'hotel1' as a login I.D. please use a font where the 'l' and the '1' are distinct.

Domme: this is primarily a tourist town so very busy in the day but deserted at night. Shops are geared to nick nacks or over-priced ephemera. There are a couple of good bar/restaurants across the square and two by the main gate which fill up each night mainly with guests from the two Hotels.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank MandMStAlbans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
sussex
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 July 2014

This Hotel was a disappointment as I discovered that a pair of expensive sandals disappeared at the end of our stay, which spoilt the experience.
The room was lovely but the restaurant was very expensive

Room Tip: choose the twin beds room at the top over the river
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank birdsong2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Deerfield, New Hampshire
Level 4 Contributor
22 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 June 2014

In a previous review of Domme I commented on Hotel l'Esplanade and its restaurant.

The Hotel itself harkens back to earlier more opulent times. While the rooms are not truly elegant they wonderfully appointed. Ask for Rooms 1-4 and 15 which have a gorgeous view of the valley below and the Dordogne River. At night you can observe the lights of the river village of La Roque Gageac several miles distant. Pricing is very reasonable in the $140 range during the summer months and of course lower in the off season.

As for the restaurant, it is my favorite in France. Having stayed at the Hotel and eaten at the restaurant 17 times, I express an obvious bias towards the establishment and its gracious hosts. Sophie Bouland, the gracious hostess and owner pays close attention to each table and is always helpful with the more than adequate wine list which features both local, regional, and countrywide bottles.

The menu created by Sophie's husband Chef Pascal Bouland is a masterpiece of cuisine presentation. There are four fixe prix menus as well as the regular menu somewhat dominated by truffles and foie gras. My favorite entrees are Foie gras de canard grille au Verjus, Le Foie Gras de Canard en pot au feu truffe, and Fricassee de Ris de veau.

While some might see the expanse of the menu somewhat limited, I have never found this to be a problem because it is well balanced between fish and meat (poultry, fish, and beef). Most importantly every dish I have ever experienced at this restaurant was exceptional and I have never been disappointed. By the way the cheese cart is one of the best I have ever sampled.

Domme is an out of the way Bastide sitting high on a mountain overlook the Dordogne Valley, but well worth your effort to visit and take a step back in time to fine lodging and dining. In the evening when the air is still look for the hot air balloons that traverse the Valley sometimes at eye level with the Hotel terrace.

Room Tip: Rooms 1-4 and Room 15
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank BillMonnie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 June 2014

We stayed two nights at this small hotel and were fortunate to be given one of the five first floor rooms (rooms 1 - 4 and 15) that face out over the magnificent 180 degree view of the Dordoigne river valley.

The panoramic view apart, our room was adequate, small but with a comfortable bed, and the breakfasts sufficient - split into a basic one and a fuller offer for a supplement.

What did impress us was the dinner, which we ate both nights, yes, on the terrace, overlooking the same view and never tiring of it! The menu was creative, the presentation colourful, artistic and a joy to behold. Overall, the flavours and textures of each dish were superb and to be savoured slowly, and the manageable wine list included several pleasant and well priced choices.

If your travels take you to this area, or if you are inspired to divert via Domme, you should definitely give this hotel and its cuisine a try.

Room Tip: Ask for one overlooking the panoramic view. 1 - 4 or 15 (more expensive) on the first floor, or on t...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Hugh B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel l'Esplanade

Property: Hotel l'Esplanade
Address: le Bourg, 24250 Domme, France
Region: France > Nouvelle-Aquitaine > Dordogne > Domme
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Domme
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel l'Esplanade 3*
Number of rooms: 15
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Hotel l Esplanade
l Esplanade Hotel Domme

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