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This auction is for the amazing and unique opportunity for 2 guests to attend a 3 night photography and gastronomy weekend break with renowned photographer, Roger Stowell. The winner will be staying in a twin or double room with private bathroom in a beautiful woodland villa, tucked away in the heart of the Forêst De Mervent in the Sud Vendée, France. Stay includes: transfers to and from La Rochelle or Nantes Airport (Big In France will inform you which flights to be on) all food and drink consumed at villa, excursions and photography lessons, valued at approximately £1,699 GBP / $2,245 USD*. Please note the following items are not included: Any meals out, personal, medical or travel insurance, visas and flights. It is also assumed that you will insure any computers, cameras and other personal equipment that you bring with you.
Prize stay dates: This prize can only be taken on 11 to 14 October 2018, subject to availability.
Enjoy a relaxing weekend of good food and fine wine set amongst delightful fortified villages and their restaurants. Guests can take long leisurely walks in the surrounding forest while learning how to move forward with photography on your phone or camera.
Roger has had a long career in London as a celebrated advertising and editorial photographer, who now lives in this area of France. Roger has worked with well known English magazines such as Elle, Marie-Claire, Sunday Times, The Times, The Observer, Telegraph Supplement, Red, Olive, and BBC Good Food as well as a legion of advertising clients. For the past 10 years he has enjoyed teaching people how to improve their photography and on this break there will be opportunities to learn about still life, portrait, landscape and of course ‘foodie’ photography.
During your stay you will have the opportunity to improve both your photographic and culinary skills but, above all this, you will have the chance to relax and eat well in a magnificent house in the heart of the French countryside. The house offers fantastic bedrooms for all clients, a stunning pool, satellite TV, wifi and a beautiful al fresco dining area. This is a holiday for the photography enthusiast or the sybarite with great food, good wine and the chance to take pictures in a perfect environment.
A normal day will begin with continental breakfast overlooking the pool where the day’s activities will be discussed once everyone is fully awake. Each morning there will be photography tuition linked to our guest chef’s preparation for the afternoon’s cooking. After this we set out for an excursion: a walk in the beautiful forest of Mervent, to buy ingredients at the covered market of Fontenay le Comte, or to a local brocante. We do not include lunch so we’d render-vous at a nearby restaurant to eat together and discuss the morning’s adventures. After lunch, for those with the energy, Roger will be available to discuss your morning’s photography, to give some tuition on Photoshop or to talk about photography linked to the afternoon’s cookery session. Although there is the opportunity to learn and improve your skills, we should make it clear that this holiday does not have a schoolroom scenario, it’s about having a good time and doing as much or as little as you like. At 6.00pm there will be drinks around the pool followed by a gourmet dinner with wine.
The winner and their guest will be staying in a double or twin room with private bathroom in a beautiful Woodland Villa with a large heated pool, nestled in its own woodland within the Mervent Forest. Recently renovated and refurnished, the light and airy property offers 8 good sized bedrooms and an amazing outdoor eating area with a bespoke wooden table overlooks the pool and decked area to one side and the forest to the other. At the property guests will enjoy wifi and Sky TV and there is easy access to the beach and all the other great attractions the Vendee has to offer, for example, the great attraction park of Puy du Fou.
The house itself is a mixture of traditional timber frame and beautiful oak frame glazed panels, which benefit from glorious views over the forest and river. The Mervent river is just 200 metres away where you will find a bar/restaurant with boating and water sports, and boats readily available to hire.
Surrounding the property there are over 200km of beautiful and well marked walks, cycle paths and horse-riding trails through the forest itself, which is spread over 5000 hectares.
Please note the following items are not included: Any meals out, personal, medical or travel insurance, visas and flights.
Terms and Conditions
Luxury Travel Diary terms and conditions apply. *This auction item is for 2 guests to attend a 3 night photography and gastronomy break with Roger Stowell in French riverside farmhouse in Marais Poitevin, near Le Mazeau, France valued at approximately £1,699 GBP by Big In France – please note this valuation is the list price provided to Luxury Travel Diary by the Auction Prize Provider and should be used as a guide only as cheaper discounted rates may be available. No cash alternative is available. This auction item excludes flights and transport, except for the transfers mentioned in the auction description above – you will need to arrange your own flights / transportation to and from your home to La Rochelle or Nantes Airport to coincide with your Big In France break. This photography and gastronomy break can only be taken between 11 to 14 October 2018. A place on this course is subject to availability. If this break is unavailable, you will be offered a place on a different break. Please note the following items are not included: Any meals out, personal, medical or travel insurance, visas and flights. Please note any associated taxes / resort fees / entrance fees etc. will be collected from the winner by the relevant property at the time of booking your stay or on departure, and will not be deducted from the amount bid for the item. Winners must pay for their auction item in full via PayPal within 48 hours of the auction end. The full Terms of our auctions can be found here. To the fullest extent permitted by law, Luxury Travel Diary will not be liable for any loss or damage arising out of the winners’ use or enjoyment of the prize; and the winner acknowledges that Luxury Travel Diary accepts no responsibility whether directly or indirectly for any claims whatsoever arising in respect of the prizes provided by third party providers or sponsors.