The setting is a small wine village on the Minervois Wine Route, a few minutes from the UNESCO Heritage site of Carcassonne. Although dating back to the 18th century, the manor house has been upgraded into a fine home with central-heating, double-glazing and a roof terrace while retaining the charm of many original features.
Currently the entire property is let as a gite: a self-catering tourist holiday home let by the week. The owners live elsewhere and manage it remotely. Guests get to use the entire house: fully equipped kitchen, dining-room, lounge, billiard room/library, rooftop terrace and the five double bedrooms and two bathrooms. And the pool.
But there is more: much more. There are still two more bedrooms to be finished on the first floor (decoration work mainly) and a vast loft space of over 80m². Above this space is the attic with another 65m² available for conversion. The owners original plan was to develop this space into their own private quarters.
Downstairs, below the ground floor, is a warren of cellars which open out into a vast stone-walled cellar space of 60m² with a 4 metre high ceiling: perfect for wine-tasting events or yoga classes. Don’t forget that this property was originally an important wine producers house: wine is very much the name of the game in this area.
This is a property with a lot of possibilities. It could be run remotely, as it is today, as a standard 5-bedroomed gite with pool. But the real interest for lifestyle-change buyers who want to settle in this sunny wine region is the, as yet undeveloped, space. There is room for a superb loft style apartment for the owners (or a manager) at very little extra investment (about €25k-30k). The enormous cellar is also crying out for use as a wine-tasting venue … there are plenty of local producers more than willing to help set this up. Finally, it would be possible to tweak the layout into use as a simple 5 bed B&B … with a table d’hôte groaning with local wines it would be an instant success.
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