character houses for sale near tours and blois in france

An 11th century watermill, its long traditional farmhouse and its wash-house
between Amboise and Blois in the Loire Valley
Amboise, LOIR-ET-CHER center-val-de-loire 37400 FR

Location

This mill is a little more than two hours from Paris via the A10 motorway, 35 minutes from Tours, with its TGV train station as well as its airport, and 25 minutes from Blois. It stands in the Loire Valley, a natural setting for Renaissance chateaux, chosen by kings for its mild climate. It is a blend of damp areas at the bottom of the valley and dry areas on the hillsides. This property is 2 km from a village, with 870 inhabitants, shops, amenities and a primary school.

Description

This property is in a hamlet, on the edge of a secondary road, little used by cars as their drivers prefer the straighter, clearer Loire embankment. A little lane, under which the river of the mill’s race passes in an east to west direction, provides access to the property. The parklands, stretching out for almost two hectares on either side, include the meanders of the river that create delightful islets here and there, reached via stone or wooden bridges. The banks, clear or planted with pollard willows are much appreciated by mallard ducks. The old wash-house is on the side of the millrace. The mill adjoins and intercommunicates with the long traditional farmhouse. The old barn is used as a garage and the former stable for storage purposes. Near to the squares used as a vegetable garden are a garden shed, a henhouse and its aviary.

The mill

This mill, with an almost square base and cubic form, is topped with a three-sloped roof covered with small tiles and featuring a shed dormer, with curved sides, on two facades. It has a brick cornice. The brick chimney stack, with its outside flue going up the south gable wall, is oval. The mill paddle wheel is sheltered under a lean-to on the north facade. The mill has small-paned windows, freestone framing around its openings and rendered walls.


Ground floor
The mill’s machine room takes up the entire ground floor, approx. 60 m². It comprises the mechanism which, if paddles were added to the paddle wheel, would still work. The floor is covered with stone tiles of varying sizes. The ceiling features exposed beams. A narrow flight of steps provides access to the mill’s upper floors.
First floor
This level does not communicate with that of the long, traditional farmhouse. It comprises two bedrooms, one facing east and the other west, as well as a shower room with a toilet. The parquet flooring in the bedrooms is old and the ceiling beams are exposed.
Second floor
The two bedrooms on this floor have sloping ceilings. Both look out via eyebrow dormers. The bathroom and toilet can be reached from the landing.

The long, traditional farmhouse

The long, traditional farmhouse was constructed at right angles to the mill, using the same materials and creating a perfectly homogeneous property. The farmhouse is lower as it only spans two levels. Its main facade faces south. This farmhouse is now predominantly used as a guest house as the actual owners live in the mill.


Ground floor
The south facade features three doors. The first, on the west side, opens into a kitchen, for guest use, and a stairway goes upstairs to two bedrooms, one of which has a shower room and toilet.
The second door opens into the main kitchen where the mistress of the house makes, amongst other things, jams that she offers to her guests. This is followed by the boiler room and a hall area, providing access to the mill as well as a study and a dining room. Features include old square or hexagonal terracotta floor tiles, exposed beams and a white stone fireplace.
The third door opens into a small lounge where a spiral stairway leads to the guest bedrooms. It is possible to reach the dining room via a hall area also leading to another small kitchen, for guest use.

First floor
The spiral stairway goes up to two large bedrooms under the slopes of the roof, each with a shower room and a toilet. The flooring is recent. There is currently no communication with the two bedrooms reached via the west stairway.

Our opinion

Tall trees are reflected in the mirror-like water of the millrace where ducks love to feed. The little bridges in the parklands celebrate the marriage of water and land. The indented mill wheels are quite naturally part of the dining room furniture. The long, traditional farmhouse acts as a lookout post over its abundant, lush, natural surroundings. This place has attracted famous guests such as Monaco’s Grâce and Rainier. A family could, nevertheless, be tempted to keep such a cosy, little world all to itself.

713 000 €
Honoraires à la charge du vendeur


Voir le Barème d'Honoraires

Reference 743564

Land registry surface area 18735 m2
Main building surface area 400 m2

French Energy Performance Diagnosis

Regional representative


Marie-Antoinette de Groulard    +33 1 42 84 80 85

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NB: The above information is not only the result of our visit to the property; it is also based on information provided by the current owner. It is by no means comprehensive or strictly accurate especially where surface areas and construction dates are concerned. We cannot, therefore, be held liable for any misrepresentation.

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