The Chateau de Bagnols is a majestic 13th century monument located in Beaujolais, near the Renaissance city of Lyon. It stands surrounded by forests and the emblematic vineyards that give this region of southwest France a characteristic and privileged lifestyle.
The ancient building has been meticulously restored with patience and love by a long list of owners and masters through the centuries. Today, Chateau de Bagnols is a luxurious hotel that maintains many of its unique architectural features such as the stunning medieval defensive towers, the original moat, drawbridge, protective walls and pierres dorées, which bring a distinctive golden hue to the entire structure.
Château de Bagnols, located just 45 minutes by car from the Saint-Exupery airport, is reputed to be one of the most beautiful castles-hotels in the world. And its fame is certainly not exaggerated, because apart from having exceptionally beautiful rooms and suites, it boasts a charming French garden, heated Roman baths and a pleasant terrace shaded by linden trees, ideal for enjoying a glass of French wine during the bucolic and cool summer nights.
On the other hand, Salle des Gardes, the castle restaurant is a truly unforgettable site, located in the Guard Room, with exceptional furniture, anchored by one of the largest Gothic fireplaces in France, which when lit provides unparalleled warmth and comfort to its guests during the long, cold winters.
Its private kitchens are skillfully led by Chef Jean Alexandre Ouaratta, who has worked alongside some of the greatest chefs in the world, such as Paul Bocuse and Yannick Alléno. The culinary creations are reminiscent of the best French cuisine, using high quality products and served in a unique, elegant and refined setting, which offers the opportunity to try different varieties of Beaujolais wines, from neighboring Burgundy.
The castle houses 22 exclusive and spacious rooms that take us back to the Middle Ages or the Renaissance. The suites have evocative names: Authentique, Elegance, Prestige, Paradis and Lady Hamlyn. These are huge, comfortable rooms fit for a king, with large granite and marble bathrooms.
Each room is decorated with the castle´s original furniture, dating from the 17th and 18th centuries, complemented with period pieces acquired through prestigious antique dealers, whose style and originality bring to life the experience of living in an ancient castle. In many of the suites, there are still traces of the original frescoes on the walls and floors.
The Château de Bagnols offers a great diversity of services to make the guests feel at home, from car rental with chauffeur, babysitting service, French haute cuisine classes, horseback riding and golf not far from the premises, to private trips to enjoy the sight of the beautiful forests and vineyards in the area. In addition, pets are welcome.
Luxury and pleasure come together at Château de Bagnols, which recently received its fifth star and now is a proud member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World Network, an acknowledgment very few hotels can boast and, certainly, Château de Bagnols highly deserves. ■