castles / chateaux for sale - allier - centre region

A 13th century stronghold house and its dwellings
dominating Besbre Valley in the Bourbonnais region
Clermont-Ferrand, ALLIER center-val-de-loire 63000 FR


The verdant countryside, in the French department of Allier, on the outskirts of the old Bourbonnais region, facing the Duchy of Burgundy, is full of small fields and hedges, crossed by numerous rivers which have formed little valleys. The villages are laid out as market towns, constructed of stone, very often clustered around a church. This stronghold house is in the immediate proximity of road and motorway networks as well as a train station with 2-hour links to Paris-Bercy.


A narrow verdant alleyway constitutes not only the access to the residence but also its protection as the surrounding vegetation is so dense. The entrance gateway is topped with a wrought stone semi-circular arch. On the immediate left-hand side of the courtyard are the remains of the old square keep and a more recent building. Stone protruding from the walls still mark the position of the floors on the various levels.
On the east side, the wall supported by two buttresses features an opening characteristic of the 13th century. The south-facing wall has a Romanesque door on the right-hand side of the entrance. Two round towers, which have lost their machicolation and battlements, are joined by a curtain wall. All that remains today of the doorway protected by a drawbridge is a stone arch visible from the outside. The round tower on the west side, with its 1.60 m thick walls, features a cross-rib barrel vault that dates back to the 13th century.
In the middle of the courtyard, adjoining the old keep, are a house and a very deep well. The keep itself, constructed after the 13th century, is robust and impressive. It spans four levels. A building, used as living space and dating from a more recent era, stands at the end of the courtyard on the south side.
The old sections date from the 13th century. This property was no longer of any interest in the 16th century as the state of Burgundy had disappeared, victim of the unification policy adopted by the kings of France. All the buildings are topped with hip roofs, covered with Burgundy tiles, and feature irregular medieval windows.

The dwelling

This dwelling, built in the 18th century, comprises but a ground floor and is connected to the keep. It is entered via double carved doors, coming from a luxury flat in the Place-des-Vosges in Paris. The hall, which includes wall cupboards on either side, leads into a corridor and a living room. Further away, a triple aspect lounge faces east, west and south. It houses a bookshelf unit and a marble fireplace. The floor is covered with strip pattern parquet flooring. The corridor leads to three bedrooms, a bathroom, a study and a toilet.
The living room is adorned with a monumental fireplace and is superbly illuminated by three windows which look out over sheer drops. Its floor is covered with terracotta tiles. It communicates with the garden and with the vaulted cellar in the keep.
The vast attic spaces could be converted.

Ground floor

The keep

This building is connected to the second round tower by a thick wall. Its first level is laid out above a vaulted cellar. Opposite, in the courtyard, a horse chestnut tree and a stone ornamental pool enhance the garden. A stone stairway goes up to the first floor. A spiral stairway then continues up to the second floor and the attic space.

Ground floor
This level comprises the kitchen, leading to the living room.
First floor
This level spans 24 m². The bedroom is adorned with a monumental fireplace. This level also includes a shower room and toilet.
The terracotta tile floor is covered with sea-rush matting. A mullioned window looks out over the garden.

Second floor
This level spans a similar floor surface area of 24 m². A tall, oak wood bookshelf unit decorates the room, with its strip pattern parquet flooring. The book selected can be read on a window seat, flanking the mullioned window.
The attic space awaits conversion. It is big enough to house a bedroom.

The second dwelling

This building, not far from the main dwelling, was built adjoining the wall of the old keep. Rectangular in shape and featuring irregular openings, it spans but one level. The entrance hall opens into a living room. It also includes a bedroom, a bathroom and a toilet.
The floor is covered with hexagonal terracotta tiles and the ceiling features exposed beams. A fireplace completes the decor. It spans a floor surface area of approx. 30 m².

Our opinion

This old stronghold house stands, like a sentry, watching over the countryside from the top of its limestone plateau, a link in the valley’s fortified line that extended as far as the Auvergne mountains, more than 80 km away. Today, the high walls of the medieval fortress, both unoverlooked and near to the sky, create a completely entrancing atmosphere. The superb local countryside appears to be laid out in such a way as to provide the most beautiful of backdrops. The desire to restore these 13th century vestiges, including towers, the old keep and curtain walls, will be especially strong as they have probably not yet revealed all of their secrets.

Exclusive sale

540 000 €
Our fees are included in the stated sale price.

Voir le Barème d'Honoraires

Reference 999304

Land registry surface area 3519 m2
Main building surface area 138 m2

Regional representative

Nelly Parisot       +33 1 42 84 80 85



send to a friend Pinterest twitter Facebook

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.

En poursuivant votre navigation, vous acceptez l'utilisation de cookies pour vous proposer des services et offres adaptés à vos centres d'intérêts et mesurer la fréquentation de nos services. OK En savoir plus