Monday, September 19, 2011

Hotel Les 7 Molles Sauveterre de Comminges; Hotel Les 3 Lys Condom France

Hotlel Les 7 Molles Sauveterre de Comminges. A molle is a millstone, and there are seven old ones distributed around the extensive grounds of this largish country inn. It's located in the central Pyrenees, surrounded by a park which has been hewn out of the forest. There are wonderful walks in along the river valley that adjoins the hotel and an ample outdoor pool. The rooms are large and prettily decorated, there's a really superior display of old hand painted regional pottery in the dining room. The restaurant, while very good, is not what it was years ago when it aspired to greatness, it now serves a traditional and not very inspired regional cuisine. You may decide to take your meals elsewhere. What this is, is a pleasant place to stay if you have an interest in visiting nearby Lourdes and want to avoid the hustle and bustle that staying in the shrine town involves. A double is approximately $150 for the night.

Hotel Les 3 Lys Condom France. The name is perhaps unfortunate but Condom is a very pretty medieval town with mostly stone houses close to the extremely picturesque gorges of the river Tarn. The hotel is a restored eighteenth century mansion with large bedrooms that have genuine antique furniture. There, a pleasant garden with a large outdoor pool and the hotel is extremely quiet at night. Here too a rooom will set you back about $15o for the night. The restaurant is somewhat overpriced and not particularly distinguished but there is a really excellent restaurant in town, La Table des Cordeliers. This is housed in a thirteenth century convent chapel and has a Michelin star. On weekdays it serves what must be close to the cheapest three course Michelin one star prix fixe in France for $31. (A note: when travelling in France it is acceptable to not take one's evening meal in a hotel with a restaurant when staying for one night, but with a longer stay this will likely provoke a very frosty response.)

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