Hotel Highlights

  • Inspiring, edgy blend of ancient and modern decor
  • Five acres of family-friendly landscaped parc to play in
  • State-of-the-art private cinema

Overview

Nestled within its own manicured parkland on the edge of the forested Dordogne region, Château de la Couronne hotel is a 16th century castle that has relegated musty furnishings to the dustbin of history. At this renovated estate you can live it up like a modern-day aristocrat with a private cinema, contemporary interiors and three kick-back-and-relax salons at your beck-and-call.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking Château de la Couronne with us:

A bottle of champagne

Facilities

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Château de la Couronne – Dordogne – France

Need To Know

Rooms

Five suites (nine if you take the entire château, to sleep up to 26 guests).

Check–out

11am, or later, subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 4pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $182.01 (€132), excluding tax at 10 per cent.

More details

Rates exclude breakfast. Rent the château in its entirety, including daily housekeeping, for €3,500 a week, or €2,200 a night. Catering is available.

Also

The hotel’s cinema space features a 2.5-metre widescreen, and the musically minded will be kept entertained by acoustic guitars, drums, a keyboard and amps to play with in the piano salon.

At the hotel

Cinema/billiards room with guitars, keyboards and amps for guests’ use, games room with table tennis, DVD and CD library, free WiFi in the Piano Salon. In rooms: flatscreen TV, DVD/CD, fully stocked fridge.

Our favourite rooms

Ring your mates and get a group together; just make sure you've earmarked your favourite room first! We were seduced by Suite 4, which has a vast double-tubbed bathroom and natural-stone walls snaked with exposed copper piping. It’s one of the château’s biggest suites, with modern iron and glass furniture, lime-green cushions, and a toe-enveloping fluffy black carpet. Suites 1, 2 and 5 have turrets; the latter also has twin corner baths with a coloured-glass mosaic between them.

Poolside

The large heated pool is surrounded by five acres of manicured, Louis XVI-style gardens, with plenty of sun-soaking space on the tiled terrace.

Packing tips

A frisbee, for flinging around the extensive green gardens. The château’s also popular as a film set, so bring along your camcorder and make your own movie magic.

Also

Massages, manicures and pedicures may be booked. Château guests are free to use Marthon’s village tennis club facilities, and rackets are available to borrow.

Children

There are plenty of activities, both indoor and outdoor, for young ones, including pool and tennis. Cots are available free, and extra beds can be provided for €40 each a night.

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Weddings

This property is suitable for weddings

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Food & Drink

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Château de la Couronne – Dordogne – France

Hotel Restaurant

There’s no restaurant, but Château de la Couronne can prepare a dinner for 10 or more, if requested in advance; catering is available for exclusive-use bookings. A fine buffet breakfast is served in the high-ceilinged réfectoire.

Hotel Bar

There’s an extremely well-stocked honesty bar in the Stone Salon. You can also kick back with a glass of local wine in front of the original open fireplace in the Seventies-feel White Salon or in the Piano Salon, by the bay window overlooking the gardens.

Last orders

Drinks are available round the clock.

Room service

Nope, but you can help yourself to a glass of Bordeaux from the honesty bar.

Smith Insider

Dress code

Catwalk-casual (Nicky, the owner, is a former Topshop bigwig, so dress to impress).

Top table

Nurse a cognac on the green leather chesterfield in the lovely Stone Salon.

Local Guide

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Château de la Couronne – Dordogne – France
Eat, drink, see, do: local favourites and more…

Local restaurants

Marthon has a small handful of eateries a short stroll from the hotel. The pick of the pile is Les Glycines on Le Bourg (+33(0)5 45 70 23 90), a salt-of-the-earth spot serving simple but delicious traditional fare. It's open for lunch, but dinner must be booked in advance. Chez Steph (+33(0)5 45 62 09 11) is a busy brasserie about 10 minutes' drive from the hotel, in La Rochefoucauld, where you'll find excellent pizzas, tender cuts of meat and an indulgence-inducing selection of home-made desserts. 25km further afield, in the cobbled hilltop town of Angoulême, Jardin de Kashmir (+33(0)5 45 95 03 03) in the old quarter, is an excellent Indian, and Le Terminus (+33(0)5 45 95 27 13) is a great spot to stop – no pun intended – for seafood. La Ruelle at 6 rue des Trois Notre Dame, Angoulême (+33 (0)5 45 95 15 19; www.restaurant-laruelle.com) has fabulous food, a chic setting and phenomenal service. Temptations include: amuse-bouche of asparagus velouté with hazelnut oil glace, rabbit stuffed with langoustines and desserts that give Hélène Darroze a run for her money.

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Pretty Charente parkland

Château de la Couronne

., 16380, Marthon, Dordogne, France

Planes

The closest airport is Angoulême's, 25km away; alternatively, fly into Limoges (85km from the hotel), Bordeaux (145km), Bergerac (145km) or Poitiers (140km).

Trains

The high-speed TGV from Paris to Bordeaux takes three and a half hours. From Bordeaux, hop on a train to Angoulême station and ask the hotel to book you a taxi from there.

Automobiles

It's a 25-minute drive from Angoulême to Marthon. The hotel has plenty of free parking.

Reviews

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Château de la Couronne – Dordogne – France

Anonymous review

by Sarah Jappy , Wordsmith wondergirl at Mr & Mrs Smith

This review is taken from our guidebook, Mr & Mrs Smith Hotel Collection: France.

It’s 3am and I’m playing billiards with Mr Smith. I say playing but I mean beating, despite – or perhaps because of – the merlot we demolished over dinner. With balls sti...

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Château de la Couronne

Anonymous review by Sarah Jappy, Wordsmith wondergirl

This review is taken from our guidebook, Mr & Mrs Smith Hotel Collection: France.

It’s 3am and I’m playing billiards with Mr Smith. I say playing but I mean beating, despite – or perhaps because of – the merlot we demolished over dinner. With balls still to kill, Mr Smith is getting desperate. He resorts to accusations of cheating, and bad gags about ball-play. I keep my cool, balance buttocks on the baize for a tricky backwards shot, and expertly pot the black. ‘Never mind, darling. Fancy a film?’

It may sound like Mr Smith and I are out on the town but, in fact, we’re in a 16th-century château in the sleepy village of Marthon in south-western France. Outside, in the inky darkness, apple-green fields surround ivory-stone streets and terracotta-roofed buildings. The craggy-faced elders we admired in the village earlier are snoring now, and contented dogs are dozing off their baguette and bavette scraps, whimpering fitfully as they picture fat rabbits.

But here in Château de la Couronne, the night is young. We lounge on the cream leather sofa in the cinema room and watch Bond blow things up, play with some gadgets, and perform his vanishing-knickers trick on the ladies. It looks quite tiring; we think 007 would be better off here, where it’s warm, snug and free of explosives. He could play seducer by strumming on one of the electric guitars hanging on the wall, or croon on the microphone and caress the keyboard. He could shake his martini at the Stone Salon’s wood and glass honesty bar, crunch on pistachios, relax fireside on the battered Chesterfield, and rest his dragon flamethrower on the table fashioned from tree roots.

He’d love our suite: a white expanse set in a turret, with bold red and black splodgy paintings on one wall, two silver Chesterfields, a palatial bathroom with two tubs, and a beautiful bed framed with wood and ochre fabric, piled high with marshmallow-like duvet and pillows. As the film continues, our thoughts turn to the bed with increasing frequency. Soon we’re boudoir-bound – climbing the spiral wooden staircase, walking down corridors lit with pools of green light, hung with dappled black and silver canvases and salvaged wooden doors. Back in our suite, blankety bliss envelops us.

The next morning, we wake early, having left the shutters open so that our Vitamin D-deprived Blighty complexions will absorb optimum sunshine. Beyond our balcony, the grounds are looking good: an emerald park, with rows of perfectly pruned hedges, white tables with parasols and spidery black chairs. The warm spring air exerts a pull on us, and we ask owners Mark and Nicky (fellow Brits) for breakfast alfresco. Nicky lays a spread of feather-light pastries, creamy cheeses, sweet jams and zingy orange juice. In the past, I’ve classed fruit salad in the ‘safe but boring’ category, along with soup – but the specimen Nicky serves up is divine: slices of sunshine-yellow pineapple and mango, scattered with plump blueberries, raspberries and ruby-red pomegranate seeds, served up in sundae glasses. Breakfasting outside is marvellous – as well as eyeing up each other, we admire the glimmering pool and lush grounds, and plan a ramble in the gardens later on.

After breakfast, we view the château in its sunlit glory. Rooms are sprinkled with a buccaneer’s bounty. I like the glittering art deco lipstick case and vanity mirror, and the piano is a handsome beast. Mr Smith is keen on the battered top hat adorning a radiator, and the lobby’s acid-green and white armchair. We could praise the château all day, but there’s exploring to be done, so we clamber into our hire car.

Our Peugeot 1007 has doors that newfangledly slide back to open. The button to release these is identical to the button that works the windows. Except that this button is positioned far from the windows, whereas the ones to operate the doors is within easy reach. Several near-death experiences later, we arrive in Brantôme, a historic town that Nicky has recommended.

Walking around, we check out Dordogne hotels with jade-green shutters and antiquated black lettering, the Benedictine abbey flanked by wooded slopes, the stone bridge and, above all, the Dronne river, flowing through the town. A short stroll leads us to irresistible delis where we stock up on rich tasty cassoulet and pretty candy. Next stop is at a seemingly unremarkable café where steak, topped with fragrant chopped onion, accompanied by slender, salty frites are far superior to what you’d find in an equivalent establishment back home. We’ve crossed bridges, we’ve eyeballed the abbey, we’ve shopped, but now we’re pining – our château awaits. Resistance is futile, so we hop into our chariot.

Back at boutique basecamp, we run baths. Regally occupying individual tubs, we sip champagne plucked from the bathroom’s minibar. The artfully tarnished mirrors steam up, herby bubble bath scents the air, and it’s all deliciously intoxicating. A dinner reservation at an Angoulême restaurant stirs us from our perfumed paradise. Several plates of foie gras, salmon parmentier and an extremely phallic lamb shank later, and we’re back. It’s as though we never left. In the Stone Salon, by the flickering fire, Mr Smith pours me a drink and, with a challenge in his eyes, necks a handful of peanuts.

‘Billiards, my sweet?’ As if he needs to ask.

The Guestbook

Reviews of Château de la Couronne from Smith members

Whenever you book a stay through us, we’ll invite you to comment when you get back. Read the Guestbook entries below to see what real-life Mr & Mrs Smiths have said about this hotel…

BlackSmith

Stayed on 14 Sep 2012

We loved

An enchanting château, perfect for family get-togethers and client entertaining. The owners Mark and Nicky were very special hosts and make each and every guest extremely welcome. The interior was very cool and well-done, unsurprisingly as Mark is a designer. Lovely place run by lovely people, would love to go back some day soon.

Rating: 10/10 stars