The smell of honeysuckle as you swim in the pool, a glimpse through the orchard to the vineyards beyond, a spin in the château-dotted countryside in a gleaming Morgan 4/4. What more? A welcome basket of homemade jam and Bordeaux, sweeping gardens with badminton and boules, fresh baguette deliveries. And friendly British owners who welcome families, can make breakfast and special dinners, and offer classic car tours. For this quiet hamlet – near Cognac, La Rochelle, the Atlantic beaches – sits in inspiring scenery. These two holiday cottages are all very homely and British behind their stone walls and sky-blue shutters: checked fabrics, pine furniture, excellent kitchens, good reading lamps, books, games, DVDs. Plump down in Rose Cottage on leather sofas under a cathedral ceiling; sleep beneath beams on super comfortable beds. Drift out to your wisteria-covered terrace – overlooking the lily pond on one side, opening to your own walled garden on the other – then take a dip in that heated pool, shared by both cottages. Or do as the cats do and stretch out for a snooze.