Guestbook

 

 

23rd Sept. 2016

 

Jim & Pauline, we have enjoyed our stay at the 'Old Walnut Mill' in Barrou so much. We feel relaxed and refreshed after spending a week here. Your cottage is beautifully fitted out and you have thought of everything we could need. The beds were very comfortable and we enjoyed cooking in your well equipped kitchen. We have enjoyed catching up with locals at nearby villages and trying out some very basic French!

The recommendations you gave us proved to be excellent. We loved the restaurant in Le Grand Pressigny, 'Grand Ma's' - wonderful owners. We also enjoyed our visit to Maire and the country feel of the 'Auberge  de Vieux Port'. Again, great food very fresh and generous for an incredibly reasonable price!

All in all it has been an experience to remember and we appreciate how easy you have both made it for us from the initial enquiry, to the last day...thank you.

 

 

Kate Weir,

Melbourne, Australia

 

Dear Jim & Pauline,

 

We were truly delighted to see your lovely cottage. sorry to have been late in arriving but you made us very welcome right from the beginning. The space of the cottage after hotel rooms was wonderful. You even arranged for us to have something to eat at the local restaurant that night, how thoughtful. Tumbling down to brekky each morning in our PJ's was very relaxing. Thank you for the use of everything...and the bubbly. Your hints on places to visit helped us decide on where to go and what to avoid. Thanks for the week. We're very happy to recommend your cottage.

 

Enjoy your life,

John & Denice

Melbourne, Australia

 


 

 

 

10th Sept. 2016

 

Thanks Pauline and Jim for the use of your lovely house. We were blessed with good weather so we were able to make the most of your delightful courtyard for every meal. This is a very beautiful part of France and there are just to many beautiful villages to take in in just one week. Particularly recommend the guided tour of the chateau at La Guerche. Also had a lovely lunch at the 'salon de the' in Angles-sur -l'Anglin...also a nice visit

Thank you for your hospitality and excellent advice.

 

Until next time,

Richard & Roz Brown,

Godmanchester,Cambridgeshire,UK

 

 


 

 

23rd July 2016

 

Dear Pauline & Jim

 

Thank you once again for this lovely home and all your kindness. I stayed here in the 'Old walnut Mill' in 2011 and if anything it is more wonderful than before. I have enjoyed painting in Barrou and the surrounding villages and enjoyed meeting all the locals. Thanks for notifying me of the village walk and patrimoine talk, it was extremely interesting and I met a number of locals. You have wonderful taste in decorating. I look forward to returning next year.

 

Fondly,

Sandy Beck, Sedona,

Arizona, USA

 

 


 

2nd July 2016

 

Pauline & Jim

 

It was nice to spend a weekend with my friend Sandy painting and exploring life in the French countryside. I felt totally recharged and I am ready to move on to my next travel destination. I've been to this part of France before and was touched by the kindness and hospitality of the people and inspired by the landscapes and charming villages. Hoping to return here in the near future as I come to France every year!

 

Thank you and best wishes.

Keiko Tanabe.

San Diego, USA

 


 

June 30th 2016

 

Dear Pauline & Jim

Thank you so much for providing such a lovely home for me for my stay in Barrou. You have created a tasteful, peaceful atmosphere in which was a pleasure to stay at home and a treat to return to after a day of exploring nearby villages and countryside on the back roads of rural France. I particularly enjoyed the flowered patio courtyard area for eating meals in the open air and getting inspiration for painting. The 'blue room' was my meditation space. It almost felt like a Vermeer painting come to life. I appreciate your hospitality. The soiree at the restaurant was delightful. You have a lovely group of friends...I am so happy to have found you off the beaten path,

 

Fondly,

Susan Weeks,

Albuquerque,

New Mexico,USA

 

 


 

 

 

Dear Pauline & Jim

Thank you so much for such a lovely beautiful experience in the Loire Valley. We came for 5 days and stayed for 9 in your beautiful home, it made us feel that Sydney, Australia was just around the corner. Your marvellous hospitality was very much appreciated. I wish we could say that we will be back but we are so far away...but we will recommend you to as many people as possible travelling to your wonderful part of the world.

 

Sharon & Gavin

Australia

June 2016

 

 

Below are the comments from our guestbook for the 'Old Walnut Mill' when it was previously offered for rent as holiday accommodation.

 

From 'Owners Direct' site 2016

 

I stayed at "The Old Walnut Mill' is 2011. It was a fantastic home, and Jim and Pauline were both delightful and helpful. As they were living in the home the next few years, I stayed in several other homes managed by them and during that time I spent a number of evenings at the house with them in residence socializing. When I heard that the house was back on the rental market, I jumped at the opportunity to rent it again. The house is well appointed, and beautifully decorated. The terrace is a fantastic place to sit and have a glass of wine and dinner. Jim and Pauline are extremely helpful with information on where to visit, directions, weekly markets, etc. Every visit to Barrou was delightful. The people in the village are very friendly, and there are many chateaux, etc. to visit in the surrounding area. I highly recommend this property for anyone who desires to visit the Loire Valley and surrounding areas. When I return to France, I always make sure to spend at least a week in one of Jim and Pauline's properties, no matter which area of France I am visiting.

 

Sandy Beck, Arizona, USA

 


 

 

16thJuly 2011

 

We enjoyed our stay Jim& Pauline - your friendliness, attentiveness and story-telling provided a lovely ambience for some lovely experiences in the Loire Valley... magic little villages all around -sensational food... especially La Promenade in le Petit Pressigny - best meal ever!... balloon flight over the Loire, then lost in Loches at midnight on way back! ...evenings in the garden-red wine& charcuterie...Loved it all.

 

Steven, Igbal, Sally & Ed, Perth, Australia

 


 

1st July 2011

 

What a marvellous experience. We came to paint the Loire Valley & had wonderful subjects. Barrou and the surrounding area gave us more opportunities than time. The locals here in Barrou were very welcoming and friendly - even with the language barrier. The house is lovely and it was a pleasure meeting you both.

 

Sandy Beck & Cathryn Steadman, Arizona,USA

 


 

4th-18th June 2011

 

Well what can we add to what's already been said? Plenty!! You have a wonderful house which oozes character and reflects your wonderful taste and devotion to making sure that your 'guests' have the best time possible. We say 'guests' because we didn't feel like that at all - we were made to feel like old friends - and hope we will continue to be so!

Thank you for letting us share in your wonderful lifestyle and giving us a taste of the Loire Valley Experience. Thanks for taking such good care of us and for your generous hospitality. We have loved our stay and will be back to see you again.

 

Ian & Susan Welsh, Thornton Cleveleys, UK

 


 

12th- 19th November 2010

 

 Over the last few years we have spent our holidays in various gites in rural France. We keep returning because the standard has been so good. Well ! guess what ! the 'Old Walnut Mill' has completely raised the bar! ...As a bonus Jim & Pauline are a delightful, entertaining, helpful and welcoming couple. I can recommend the Loire in November as the Autumn colours are beautiful and most of the tourists have departed.- A truly wonderful holiday in Barrou - It surpassed all expectations.

 

Tony & Amanda Bubear, Canbara, Australia.

 


 

5th- 13th October 2010

 

Over the top! Every corner and nook is another aesthetic surprise. Comfort and accommodation - nothing lacking. Charming "landlords" who treated us a old friends. Their generosity touched us. Quality and thoughtfulness - merci beaucoup!

 

Gerry & Cay Castonguay, Worcester, Massachusetts USA

 

 


 

25th Sept.2010

 

Our first time in the Loire has been a wonderful experience, thanks to the accommodation and hospitality offered by Jim & Pauline. 'The small village experience' was great and made us feel part of the landscape rather than just passing tourists. All the conveniences, phone internet - made for a hassle-free stay. Jim & Pauline have thought of everything to make the holiday easy and enjoyable all the tourist guides, music etc. etc.. With bathrooms upstairs and downstairs we were spoilt for amenities - and an easy to operate washing machine came in handy!......  In summary a fantastic entre to the Loire and rural France - would come back anytime and recommend to others, well done!   

     

David & Di Hughes, Brisbane, Australia

 


 

18th Sept.2010

 

'The Old walnut Mill' has been a great retreat with all the modern conveniences with none of the stress of modern life. Thank you for all your help. The village of  Barrou is small but it has all you need for a pleasant holiday. Good luck with your new life in the Loire Valley.

 

Janet & Ted, Toronto, Canada

 


 

4th Sept.2010

 

What a lovely experience, one to treasure! Jim & Pauline's gite is a very quaint place with all the home comforts, they were so helpful and friendly. The Loire Valley is everything we imagined and more, so peaceful and picturesque, such wonderful photos we have taken! 'Merci Beaucoup' Jim & Pauline for enabling us to have a wonderful experience staying in the Loire Valley.

 

Marilyn & Ernie Giles, Portarlington, Victoria, Australia.

 


 

28thJuly 2010

 

We have had a wonderful week here.- After arriving from Paris rather 'hot and bothered' we thought that we had died and gone to heaven on arriving at 'The Old Walnut Mill'. Jim & Pauline have welcomed us warmly and have bent over backwards to make sure we did and saw as much as possible. They have thought of everything here and it is just lovely. This little part of the Loire Valley is so peaceful and lovely and we will never forget our stay at the 'Old Walnut Mill'. Jim & Pauline have every right to feel proud of their little part of France.

 

Noel & Kath Withers, Greensbourgh, Victoria, Australia.

 


 

7th-21st July

 

Wonderful greeting on arrival lovely gite with everything we could possibly need. We visited friends near  Macon on the middle weekend and we all felt as if we were coming 'home' on our return to the gite. Lovely meal at 'Grand Ma's' on first night. Visited several chateaux in the area - our favourite being Azay-le-Rideau....We have stayed in several 'gites' over the last 14 years but this has been one of the best - will certainly recommend to friends.

 

Ann & Allan, Derbyshire. Mary & Barry Leicester UK.

 


 

July 31st 2010

What a lovely place to relax! We've had a really nice time in 'The Old Walnut Mill', wish we could have stayed longer. The house exceeded our expectations. We were particularly  grateful for the incredible amount of information on local attractions etc..  The countryside is really pretty and every little village is prettier than the last. The swimming spot at Lesigny (and the bakery) were favourites , as was Azay le Ferron.     Jim & Pauline -  we are happy to be your first Irish visitors, we definitely wont be the last! We'll be recommending 'The Old Walnut Mill' to friends and family back home.

 

Keavy & Tina, Dublin, Ireland

 


 

July 2010- 2weeks

 

We have thoroughly enjoyed our Loire Experience, the Walnut Mill is a lovely old building that has helped us blend into a rural life. We have enjoyed the facilities new and old inside and outside the mill. It has been lovely to sit out both at lunchtime and evenings in the courtyard with local fare and of course a bottle of wine.....It has been lovely to walk along to the  boulangerie and to eat at the local restaurant. the mill has been an absolute haven as we struggled with temperatures 28/33* ....It was great to visit chateaux first seen 26 years ago plus new ones, Langeais (very worthwhile) and Usse. But the greatest pleasure has been our local wanderings to La Guerche,La Roche Posay ,Angles sur l'Anglin , Preuilly sur Claise and many other local villages. As well as local walks up into the woods behind the village....A big thank you Pauline and Jim for your kindness and consideration ---enjoyed sharing the Barrou music festival with you.

 

Nora & Chris                                                                                                           Gloucestershire, England

 


 

June 11th 2010

 

Thanks for a lovely stay and for your thoughtful preparation for us with a toddler.         We really appreciate the care and consideration that has gone into making the house a great base to explore the area and so pleasant and comfortable. It was great to see the house at Le Grand Pressigny as well - we are so impressed with all that you have achieved.

Wishing you well and many thanks again.

 

Heinz, Kirsty & Min                                                                                                           Corona, NSW, Australia

 


 

June 4th 2010

 

Thanks so much for a great stay .You are terrific hosts.

The house catered for everything we could ask for and more! To have a phone and internet access to home contacts was a real bonus especially as our daughter had not been well. All the material supplied was very informative and helpful.                          

We will certainly spread the good word. Thanks again.

 

Ross & Lynn Hedges,                                                                                                        Auckland New Zealand 

 


 

May 20th 2010

 

We have had a wonderful time for this our first trip to the Loire Valley. The Walnut Mill is a lovely home away from home, most welcome as we'd spent the last 6 weeks in hotels. It has been especially nice to be able to have simple home cooked meals and a comfy lounge room....You have been extremely generous hosts...All the reference material and your great websites were a great help for us 1st timers! Thanks so much for your warm welcome. Hope we can catch up again someday either here or in Australia.

 

Kate & Ken Damm                                                                            Portsea,Victoria,Australia.   

                              


 

May 2010

 

An oasis of village calm nestled in countryside that holds many wonderful surprises. Barrou and The Old Walnut mill proved to be an inspired choice. The cosy rustic charm promised by your website was fully realised.  We will recall our times here over the years and urge our friends to share the warmth of your welcome and the extent of your concern that your guests enjoy their Loire Valley Experience.  We are particularly appreciative of the friendship you offered and the manner in which you readily made your home our home. We wish you every success in the future and look forward to meeting you both again down the track.

 

|Margaret & Brian Rogers, Canberra, Australia.  

 


  

April 23rd 2010

Our first experience of a cottage stay in France and what a standard has been set!   We expected a key and a place to eat - hopefully somewhere to cook a meal occasionally. What we got was not only a home ( a theme running through all comments so far) but extremely generous and delightful hosts; Although busy working on another house Jim & Pauline’s main concern was that everything should be just right for us. The Old Walnut Mill, a fine house in itself, is fitted with everything to make for a relaxing stay artistically decorated with their personal collection of artefacts, always warm and welcoming. In fact we were torn between all the delights offered by the ample ‘home tourist office’(great info.in house) and the desire to enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the village Barrou style. As if that wasn’t enough there is a stunning collection of CD’s and DVD’s chosen with discrimination. Barrou itself grows on you, so that at the end of one week, it’s good to think there is another to go – then what a pity! that was not enough. No need to cook really, although there are full facilities, as there is a very French  style restaurant serving terrific and great value lunches and dinners AND a top class(or ‘hatted’) restaurant ‘La Promenade’ close by which served  a truly amazing meal .

Perfect fine, crisp days and as a bonus , an organised local walk with baguettes and 'le vin' served halfway.

We had Pauline and Jim’s help in hiring a local car at ‘Super U’ and with that we visited chateaux at Loches, Villandry and finally Chambord – all very different and delightful. Apart from driving we enjoyed walking around or biking to nearby villages. It has all been wonderful and a real taste of life in rural France. I so enjoyed the various markets on offer  where we bought which we didn’t mind sticking on our waistlines ever ! –who cares!

Thanks so much for the great help before we arrived ,the transport, recommendations ( even down to which books to read!) and the lovely touches in the house itself - and you put on lovely spring weather. Cannot imagine we won’t be back and will certainly be recommending this or any other place of Pauline and Jim’s. Enjoy!

Kathleen and Mary Hossack,

Sydney,Australia. 


1

st October 2009

 

Thank you so much Jim & Pauline for a gorgeous week in this fabulous part of France...we had such a lovely time. The Old Walnut Mill and Barrou were exactly what we'd hoped they would be and more...we were all enchanted and sad to be going. Thanks again.

 

Val, Neil, Finny& Angus                                                                                          

Melbourne, Australia 

                                                                                                   


 

September 2009

 

There are not enough words in my dictionary to describe our visit to the Walnut Mill house in Barrou. The four of us adventured out each day at 9.30 returning by 6.00pm or shortly after. The history of the Loire was begat by all of us. Today (22nd) we toured the museum at Le Grand Pressigny --its a treasure!. Our cameras are filled with treasures and our friends and family will pleasure all and hear of each and every single one! No 'au revoir' - we may be back. Thank you for your kind hospitality we had a perfect Loire Valley holiday.

 

Bev & Janet Baifield,Ontario,Canada                                                                                         Donald & Darrell,Vancouver,Canada

 


 

September 2009

 

A lovely 'home from home' in a delightful area of France. Definitely the best equipped gite we have stayed in over many years - I would recommend it to anyone. This comfortable home is warm and welcoming - keep up the good work - we have really enjoyed our stay.

 

John & Carol, North Yorkshire, UK

 


 

August 2009

 

Cuando llegamos a vuestra casa, en un pequeno instante lo comprendimos
todo, habia una nota que decia « bienvenidos a vuestro hogar » y asi
ha sido durante estos dias.  Gracias por habernos acogido tan
fabulosamente, sois encantadores.  Gracias por la informacion sobre
todo lo que podiamos hacer  (en espagnol de « a pie » diriamos que
vaya »currada que te has pegado » con comodidades y atenciones nuestra
estancia en la casa.

Nos llevamos a Valencia, el paisaje, las imagenes, los olores y
tambien la sensacion de haber « estado en casa ».  Nuestros hijos asi
lo expresaban cuando volvemos a casa ?  Y cuando terminaban nuestras
experiencias en el loira volviamos a ella.

Gracias con el corazon

Alicia,Juan,Miguel,Pechez, Valencia,Espana

(They liked it! -- We liked them!)

 


 

August  2009

 

We've had a brilliant honeymoon at the Old Walnut Mill, it's a shame we couldn't have stayed longer. Thank you so much for all your help when the car broke down. Thanks also for going out of your way to make sure our son had all he needed here. Good luck with your next project and hope to see you again in the future.

 

Helen, Charlie + Nye, South London

 


 

July  2009

 

It couldn't be better!, the house and courtyard thoughtfully prepared for a pleasant stay. The beautiful setting of Barrou village and your warm hospitality made our time here unforgettable. The children were charmed by the house the first glance as well and the collection of books went in line with their imagination of very special places. All our trips were unique and full of French experiences which will be with us a while. Thank you for a wonderful week and all the best for the future.

 

Zoya, Alexander + kids, New Jersey, USA

 


 

July  2009

 

We have had a fantastic holiday, what a lovely place to stay. Christopher enjoyed playing with the Lego and fishing down on the river. France is a lovely country. We enjoyed our visit to the Safari park and our visit to Futuroscope. Jim & Pauline are lovely people and we hope to come back in the future. Many thanks for allowing us to stay in your property.

 

Mary , Jim & Christopher Burwood, Ayrshire, Scotland

 


June 2009

Fantastic week, great wine, superb vineyards, great base and place - we all felt at home and the DVD & CDs were second to none! Le Promenade restaurant is excellent.

Tracy, Emma & Joe, London


 

June 2009

 

Thank you Jim & Pauline for a wonderful  two weeks. Your home is wonderful - we wanted for nothing - you really have thought of everything- and more! The 'Old Walnut Mill' was a great find on the internet but in reality it is much bigger and really does have the 'wow' factor. We look forward to returning...

 

Di & Andrew Wood, Stoke on Trent, UK

 


 

April 2009

 

What a wonderful time we have had, Jim & Pauline you have been thoughtful and attentive to our needs-including clothing for my husband due to lost baggage! Your home is lovely, we have been most comfortable and warm with the fireplace going every night. We enjoyed ourselves so much that we lost track of time --thinking and wishing we had one more day. Off to Paris we go and the serenity and peacefulness of here will be only a warm memory. My mother was comfortable-so nice to have spacious rooms and comfortable surroundings.

Debbie,Stu & Ella,Kitchener,Ontario,Canada

 


 

October 2008

 

What a wonderful 'French' experience our family has had staying in the 'Old Walnut Mill'. Being so far away from home and travelling in such small accommodation over the past weeks ,we were overwhelmed with the cottage. We are particularly grateful for how Jim and Pauline were in regards to accommodating a family travelling with children! Our three children not only enjoyed visiting the many tourist attractions but were always keen to return to their 'home' to construct and design with the 'awesome' amount of LEGO. Thank you Jim & Pauline for providing us with a true 'French' experience and for making us so welcome.

 

Brad,Donna,Toby,Gabi,&Jesse Griffith                                                      Dungos,NSW,Australia

 


 

September 2008

 

We stayed here for three weeks with (firstly) family-our three children from London/Delaware, USA and then friends from the UK. The 'Old Walnut Mill' was like a 'home from home' we found that we wanted for nothing......Overall with all our guests we ate and drank far too much and had an exceptionally relaxing holiday. The weather also treated us kindly with blue skies and sunshine and only 2 rainy days in three weeks! Many thanks to Jim and Pauline for the Old Walnut Mill.

James & Jean Taylor,                                                                                        

George,Cape Province,                                                                                                

 South Africa         

 


                                                                           

September 2008

 

...Its a pity that we have to leave but we hope there will be an opportunity to return here someday.

 

Jiri Jura & Maria Andrejkova, Slovakia

 


 

August 2008

 

The Old Walnut Mill is like a tardis - you open the front door and its many rooms open up to the traveller. It has been a terrific place to spend the week relaxing, experiencing the beauty of the local countryside and enjoying the village atmosphere.

 

Tom & Sandy Kelly,Perth, Western Australia.

 


 

August 2008

 

Having spent two days travelling it was wonderful to receive such a warm friendly welcome from Jim & Pauline--they really have thought of everything, from routes to places of interest to every home comfort in the house. Thank you Jim & Pauline it has been a wonderful holiday

Steve & Julie Honey Market Weighton, York,England

 


 

August 2008

Thank you Jim & Pauline for providing such a well equipped holiday home with such character. We enjoyed being able to explore, via our tandem, some of the lovely towns and villages nearby--we will always remember those sunflowers!

 

Sally & Mark Brocks, Somerset,England

 


 

July 2008

 

What a find! Our very own 'Old Walnut Mill' with secluded courtyard all to ourselves for 2 weeks.......we have had a wonderful holiday and would like to thank Jim & Pauline for their attention to every detail.

 

Jean&George, Airdrie ,Scotland.

 


 

July 2008

 

Our family had a wonderful holiday in the 'Old Walnut Mill'-Jim & Pauline have made a beautifully organised home with fantastic reference material and more than comfortable accommodation, We will always remember the fun we had learning and playing 'Petanque' with you and your neighbour David. You are truly excellent hosts!

 

Steve,Laura,Carter(11) Ara(8) San Diego,California.

 


 

July 2008

 

Jim & Pauline have made the 'Old Walnut Mill' a home of French charm and Scottish efficiency ....thank you for for giving us the opportunity to share something of your new life and to sample the 'Loire Valley Experience'

 

Bill & Marlynn Mackay,Scotland

 


 

June 2008

 

A visit to the 'Old Walnut Mill' is something to savour, larger than it appeared and well furnished it soon became a real 'home from home'......We wish continued success to Jim & Pauline-but not too much --we don't want to have difficulty rebooking.

 

Steve & Lynn Flowers,Sheffield,England.

 


 

April 2008

 

What an amazing place-I had a very interesting and busy trip. I loved the house and the special touches Jim & Pauline made that say 'WELCOME'....I hope to come back some day.

 

Janet Reber, Concord,California.

 

 

 

Source: text & photographs copyright © experienceloire.com 

 

Author: Jim Craig