2017 Season : FULLY BOOKED
Rive Gauche is the special side of Marseillan. Behind the restaurants of the pleasure port - a casual saunter from the quaysides, just beyond the mast of the old wooden sailing boat Jusqu'au Bout and the stone breakwater is the simple Port Tabarka...
... and a walk along the rue des Pecheurs, just a little way back from the port itself is where you will find our home:
The swooping swallows have known it for years and families of ducks have long claimed the quarter for their own, the fishermen and winegrowers go about their daily business, nodding to neighbours, sniffing the changing wind and setting the world to rights over a glass or two of pastis in a convivial shack.
The new cottages and townhouses of the port nestle comfortably alongside the wine chais and older warehouses and family homes of the quarter.
On rue des Chantiers, Monsieur Tobal the cabinet maker saws, planes and hones fine timber into beautiful bespoke tables and dressers, around the corner on the rue 19 Mars, the Banq family winemakers of the Madeleine St Jean pour a glass of their
viognier to offer a morning visitor; and from rue des Pecheurs, a chalut fishing boat heads out to the oysterbeds.
The house Rive Gauche nestles in the heart of this waterside quarter, a hundred yards from the lagoon itself. Unlatch the gate into the small sunny terrace and let yourself in the house.
On the ground floor is the bright and open kitchen and living room, with its television and music system and a pair of sofas. The kitchen area is well equipped, with oven and hob, microwave, fridge, plenty of storage space and a well planned preparation area.
Set the table for breakfast: fresh coffee and fruit juice, a baguette and croissants from Lagarrigue boulangerie next to the church, and perhaps, as a treat, a jar of home made fig preserve or apricot jam from Le Jardinier de 4 Saisons, who sells her kitchen garden wares wares from a countere in the covered market twice a week.
From the living room, big double glass doors open out onto that south-facing terrace for dining al fresco under the pergola on oysters raised in the lagoon's famous oysterbeds by Madame Azaïs along the lakeside and a glass or two of crisp white wine from the wine cellars at the top of the street.
With the port and boatyard just down the rue des Pecheurs, the park a couple of minutes walk in the other direction, the outdoor life is almost literally on your doorstep.
Very much an open plan home,this a lovely place for a quiet moment for pouring a glass of Noilly Prat, from the distillery in the port, settling back and dipping into a good book from the selection of French and English titles in the bookcase, or poring over a local map to plan a cycle trip around the lagoon or along the Canal du Midi.
The advantage of a holiday at the Rive Gauche is the versatility of the sleeping arrangements.
Besides the main bedrooms and shower/wc upstairs, downstairs, behind the living room is a third double bedroom, opposite a shower room and wc, ideal for less mobile visitors or for those who simply prefer not to have to use the stairs.
There is direct access to the garage from the hall.
Upstairs to two double bedrooms, one (with plenty of fitted wardrobe space) looking out onto the gardens of rue des Pecheurs, the other room with its views across to the lagoon.
A second shower room and wc for the first floor bedrooms, means no long queues in the morning.
Having the bedrooms on two levels is also a bonus for families who like to give each other a little extra space on holiday!
PRICES in 2016
(price per week: in £ sterling)
|January - March 22||£ 290|
|March 22 - April 26||£ 300|
|April 26 - May||£ 400|
|July - August||£ 660|
|Christmas New Year||£ 400|
Sterling prices held as last year
For euro rates and availability email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
This large terraced cottage is just a couple of minutes mooch from the restaurants of the main port, and an easy walk to the heart of the village. Unusually for Marseillan, the house has a small garage to keep your car secure, and store a bike or two.
This house is a favourite for cyclists who find it the ideal base for heading out on the cycle paths to Marseillan Plage and the full 60km circuit around the lagoon, taking in the bustling port of Sete and teh fishing villages of Meze, Balaruc and Bouzigues as well as the super Lido beach road that featured on the celebrated Tour de France itself.
And always, whenever you step outdoors, ever a glimpse of the fishermen's quarter, their boats in port, their informal café philo' where, amongst their nets, they solve the world's problems over a glass or two and where time stands still in the Rive Gauche of Marseillan.
All this is still an easy stroll to the lakeside tennis courts, and the sailing clubs are just across the main port.
You might like to prepare a picnic hamper and book an afternoon sailing on the etang.
A family for four might rent a sailing boat with its own skipper for a half day on the water for around 50 euros. - the perfect way to appreciate Marseillan, and a great alternative to the nearby beaches, swimming in the lagoon from the stern of the
Pollux, the Loup or Sunny. If floating calmly on the still waters is not your game, then you are still spoilt for choice.
Try your skills at windsports on the lagoon, or chance your arm at a game of Boules in the village.
Perhaps you will be inspired to set up an easel or sketchpad in the port - as have others before you who have stayed in this house. Everyone discovers the Port Tabarka through fresh eyes.
The village theatre is worth a visit for jazz or a boulevard comedy, and the church hosts charming summer concerts.
Market day is Tuesday: buy local olive oil, seafood, soaps and herbs. Sunday sees the biggest flea-market in the region - 5 minutes drive around the lake.
And every day of the week, you will find fresh oysters and mussels sold from the fishermen's houses in the village.
After all, the best part of a holiday in the foodiest parts of France is sniffing out the best ingredients, asking the locals for their family recipes and cooking the classics for yourself. besides the kitchen, with its generous preparation area, there is even an electric plancha to use outside - no messing around with complex barbecues.
Spoil yourself with memorable meals on the quayside - just 2 minutes away, or enjoy a supper of steak and gambas cooked over an open fire in the village 500 yards from the port.
The Rive Gauche is not tied to Saturday-to-Saturday holidays.
Why not take advantage of the excellent low cost rail and flight deals and consider Sunday and midweek arrival and departure days.
Out of season, ask us about our special rates for home hunters and tailor made short breaks for property seekers.
Whatever the season, Rive Gauche would be the perfect setting for discovering, exploring and creating your own corner of Marseillan, the village the locals call "Paradis sur terre".
Reserve your special time at Rive Gauche now by
calling us in France on + 33 (0) 4 67 21 75 66
or emailing us atStephane@MarseillanVillage.co.uk