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Manoir Saint-Maixent-l'Ecole (79)

Price: € 493,500
  • 400 m2
  • 12 rooms
  • 4 bedrooms

An 18th century manor house, with an older core, and outbuildings between the Niort plain and the little Gâtine wood in the Poitou region. This property is in the French department of Deux-Sèvres, where the bocage countryside, small irregular-shaped fields separated by hedges and ditches, has resisted industrial farming. Its wealth of heritage and natural resources, such as the Poitevin marshes, are not spoilt by mass tourism. This manor house, between the upper section of the Sèvre-niortaise, a little river winding its way to a bay known as the Anse-de-l'Aiguillon, north of La-Rochelle, and the relief of the Gâtine area, the far end of the Armorican Massif, is 10 km from a small town, the railway station of which has TGV trains providing links to Paris in less than 2 hours. This manor house was home to Seigneurs, who belonged to a lineage of local gentlemen, for three centuries up until the second half of the 19th century. Its status of the time is still demonstrated in the architecture with two houses, a round tower, a square tower and the outbuildings. In 1886, it was sold together with 173 ha of land, reconstituted after the French Revolution, to several farmers. The residence was then subjected to a long period of neglect which the current owners ended in 1973 by carrying out meticulous restoration works, now almost complete. The house follows the lie of the land, sloping slightly upwards in a west to east direction over about 50 m, hence the west side spans three levels whilst the east side has but one level over a cellar. The highest building is topped with a Mansard roof, combining Roman tiles with slate from the area around Angers on the break. There was a square tower at each end of the building but the one on the west end has been removed, thus enhancing a third round, engaged tower which was behind, on the north-west side and, clearly visible, now contributes to the elegance of the building. The outbuildings, set at right angles to the house, were once adjoining but they are now separated from the square tower by a passageway. They used to face a matching wing on the west side, thus forming a U-shape. Another outbuilding, restored in the 19th century such that it resembles a chapel, stands facing the south side of the house.The house on the west sideIt is constructed from limestone quarry blocks. Dressed limestone was used for framing the tall, regularly-spaced 18th century, small-paned windows with their fanlights, many of which have been replaced like-for-like, and for the quoins. The ground floor has wooden shutters whilst the first floor has indoor shutters. The roof dormers on the west section are topped with triangular moulded pediments, the slopes of which are adorned with fire pots. This outside decoration reflects the stateliness as well as the era of this facade: it was started under the reigns of Louis XIII and Louis XIV. The round tower was crowned in the 18th century with baluster railings. The eastern wing, set back behind a terrace, features the same large, inward-opening casement windows without fanlights; they illuminate the lounges. The square tower at the east end was added around 1830 to partially replace the junction with the outbuildings which can be seen on the Napoleonic land register. It has a hip slate roof.Ground floorThe entrance door dates from the late 18th century. Its soberly moulded architrave is topped with a simplified entablature: smooth frieze and protruding dentil cornice. The wooden doors, under a lattice fanlight, feature six panels, slightly raised in a diamond shape, the points of which bear medals representing faces. The vestibule, paved with Upper Poitou limestone tiles, is extended by a through stairway with limestone steps. Given the lie of the land, higher on the north side, the stairway goes up to the first floor on the ...

reference : 232570 - Le Figaro Properties reference : 13706763