For the next part of our French road trip, we left our hotel at Compiegne and headed down to the rural chateau we had booked for the next few nights, stopping off at a shopping village on the way.
La Vallee Village is part of a collection of designer shopping outlets across the world, including Bicester Village in Oxford and it is located very close to Disneyland Paris.
Similarly to Bicester, La Villee Village is not cheap – the shops are high-end designer shops and the village is impeccably maintained, so we only window shopped, apart from picking up some beautiful Villery and Boch glasses that I fell in love with.
The shops quickly became very busy, with queues forming just to get inside the most popular shops, so we headed to Pret a Manger to pick up some lunch. It was very crowded in there so we took our lunch with us and got back on the road, looking for somewhere scenic to pull up and have a mini picnic.
We found a lovely peaceful spot looking into the forest, where we ate our salads and snacks and took in the fresh air and all the greenery around us. Bliss!
We headed straight for our next hotel – Chateau d’Augerville in Augerville La Riviere.
There was an event taking place in a nearby town, and the road that our sat nav tried to take us down was closed for the celebrations, which resulted in me hilariously attempting to converse with some French ladies who spoke very little English. Somehow, we managed to vaguely understand each other, and new directions were followed.
We were a little relieved to finally arrive and to check into our room.
We stayed in one of the Tradition Rooms, all of which are situated in the 17th century listed outbuildings opposite to the chateau.
Traditional and rustic decor and features, with modern amenities like air conditioning, which in the blazing heat was much needed, let me tell you! Although no kettle or hot drink making facilities were provided, which were greatly missed.
Considering the rural location, and we were a little weary from a day of travelling and walking around the shopping village, we chose to eat at the chateau restaurant, Le Restaurant Jacques Coeur, for dinner on our first evening staying here.
Wooden panelling and beams combined with a grand fireplace made for a formal and very traditional room.
We snacked on a trio of nibbles while we browsed the menu, followed by a choice of various types of fresh bread rolls.
We were served a salmon amuse bouche, which looked incredible, and I’m so annoyed I forgot to photograph it!
We both chose the Limousin beef with potato croquettes and vegetables for our main course.
The food was delicious and the portion size is very deceiving – although eating fresh bread, an amuse bouche and a trio of nibbles beforehand were probably the main reason I struggled to finish my food!
The food at the chateau restaurant isn’t cheap, but it was certainly good quality and very enjoyable.
We had a couple of drinks and then headed back to our room to get a good night’s sleep ready for another day of exploring and a much anticipated trip to the chateau spa!