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With 35 hectares of vineyards stretching as far as the eye can see and grounds lined with century old trees that look out to the Durance valley, this old bastide has been beautifully restored to reign majestically over the surrounding countryside. The Domaine de Fontenille is perfect for anyone looking to stay in the foothills of Luberon, just a short way from the capital of Provence. A hotel, a restaurant, a vineyard and an art centre all at once – it is impossible not to admire the size and breadth of what this lifelong project has to offer. Staying here is something of a real-life adventure, the property’s discreet and refined luxury has boldly mixed classical features with more contemporary ones. It is a celebration of all that the south of France has to offer and an ode to the French way of life.
It was above all the breath-taking beauty of the house and grounds that caught our eye, but the quality of the soil here also inspired us to embark on this incredible adventure. An adventure that led us to produce high quality wines and respectfully renovate an abandoned country estate along with its century old grounds. It is one of the most beautiful bastides that the Luberon region has to offer. We endeavoured to create a timeless atmosphere here by mixing time periods, styles, and classic 18th century architecture with works by contemporary artists in what we believe is a harmonious blend.
The Domaine de Fontenille is one of the rare Provençal properties to have maintained its original appearance. Today it is composed of a large country house to the south that is bathed in sunlight and surrounded by five hectares of grounds, as well as vineyards that stretch as far as the eye can see and outbuildings that now serve as wine cellars. These all form an estate of more than two thousand five hundred square metres that also features a former wash-house and numerous fountains.
Built between the end of the 16th century and the beginning of the 17th century, the Domaine de Fontenille was listed with twelve hectares of vineyards on the 1638 land register. As it was the Savornin family’s fiefdom for several centuries, it was only in the second half of the 20th century that new owners began making changes to the house. The grounds were originally used as orchards and farmland while the house served as a holiday home before it was divided up. The restructuring of the estate and the restoration of the bastide began in 2013 under the direction of architect Alexandre Lafourcade. The property was transformed into a luxury hotel whilst still respecting the original architecture.
Peace and well-being. The property has many features to help our guests relax including several gardens on the grounds, a twenty-metre-long heated outdoor swimming pool, a fitness suite and a hammam. The eighteen rooms and the unique guest apartment are equally ideal for some calm and serenity. We also have two lovely restaurants, the first is ‘Le Champs des Lunes’ and is dedicated to fine dining, the second is ‘La Cuisine d’Amélie’ which has more of a bistro feel and is run by star chef Jérome Faure. Both offer innovative and modern cuisine made from local produce. However, no restaurant is complete without wine, so we offer expertly crafted wines which we are in the midst of converting to an organic process. The wine cellar and tastings are open to visitors all year round. Contemporary art also plays an important role at the Domaine de Fontenille - each living room and bedroom is decorated with pieces by contemporary artists who have had their work shown in some of the biggest museums. Every year we collaborate with galleries and international institutions to put together four collective, thematic or personal exhibitions of contemporary artists, and we host these in the former wine cellar.
Of the best in the area, we would recommend Eric Sapet’s ‘La Petite Maison’ in Cucoron. Along with Ansouis and Lourmarin which are just a few kilometres away, Cucoron’s stunning architecture and unique beauty make it one village in the Luberon region that just cannot be missed. There are also plenty of walking trails in the Luberon mountains; their peace and tranquillity can just as easily be explored by bike or on horseback.
The Domaine de Fontenille is an excellent venue for weddings outside of July and August.
Jazz concerts are held on the terrace every Thursday night during July and August. Aperitifs and music can be enjoyed with a dancehall atmosphere at the washhouse every Tuesday evening. The occasional concert is organised in the wine cellar with light drinks served at the end.
We host contemporary photography exhibitions four times a year in the gallery of the Domaine de Fontenille.
The ‘vineyard stroll’ is a discovery tour that includes wine tasting and a visit to the cellars and winery.