I went through Puycelci and loved it so much I went back and spent the night in this lovely hotel. Nice large well appointed hotel. Friendly Australian owners. Comfortable bed and nice decor in the room. I would go out way of my way to visit this gorgeous little village and this auberge. It's across the square from the church, so you will always know what time it is.
Puycelci is walled, medieval hilltop town overlooking miles of farmland and vineyards. It's easily explored in an afternoon with plenty of time left over to sip some wine. There is no better place to do so than at L'Ancienne Auberge where its owners Dorothy, an American expat and her husband Dave, an Aussie, will make you feel right at home. They have lived here for thirty years and in that time have completely renovated their 500 year old property, bringing the two foot thick stone walls and Gothic arches back to life. Dorthy is the consummate host, pressing a delicious breakfast on her guests which included fresh squeezed orange juice. The rooms are comfortable, attractive and spotless. This writer came down with a bad cold during our stay and Dorothy provided homemade pumpkin vegetable soup as the perfect cure. We can't say enough about her generous and attentive hospitality.
Puycelci is centrally located two hours from Nice, two hours from Barcelona and two hours from the Alps making it the perfect base from which to explore the region. You might want to check out their one and two bedroom apartments available by the week. The two bedroom apartment has a huge, private terrace with views to die for. Enjoy!
We could rate this B&B anything from terrible to excellent, depending on what you expect & are looking for. For us it was (almost) perfect.
Let's start with the good points: the walled town of Puycelsi is lovely, small enough to walk all round & lovely views over the surrounding countryside. The 'Auberge' is also a fascinating building with massive walls, lovely arches & interesting rooms. The American lady whom runs it is also a delight, very friendly & accommodating & provides an excellent breakfast. Our room on the top floor was large, withn a comfortable bed, a good modern bathroom & surrounded by windows overlooking the town church.
The bad points: we were luck enough to be able to park right outside the hotel but there is only enough space for 1 car & a handicap space. Most visitors will need to park outside teh walled town (c.150m away) in non secured parking. Not ideal in the rain or if you are carrying a lot of valuable stuff in the car. Whlst the hotel itself is fascinating, it has clearly seen better days & the impression is one of 'past glories' rather than modern facilities. Whilst we had a good breakfast with fresh bread, croissants, home made jams & honey any kind of tea you fancy, the coffee wasn't so good & there is no evening meal facilities. So you need to pop down te street to one of the other restauarants for dinner. The one we were recommended to was at best mediocre. (See separate review of this). The other (quite big!) problem on a hot summers night is the church clock tower just outside our window with a bell which rings every hour & half hour throughout the night!! So beware if you're a light sleeper!
Stayed here in February and so the village was deserted. The village is a beautiful place to visit. I went there after seeing it on a BBC documentary. The auberge is easy to find as the village is tiny. Park in one of the public parking areas and walk round. The room was great and i was given a small but good breakfast. The lounge area of the old inn is stunning. The owner also gave out excellent tourist information. I went to Albi and Conques on her recommendation and discovered two brilliant places I otherwise would not have seen. Wifi in public areas of hotel.
Puycelsi (Puycelci) did not show up on our detailed Michelin map. However, thanks to our GPS the fortified hilltop village and l’Ancienne Auberge were very easily found. We stayed at the l’Ancienne Auberge two nights in mid-June. Our special room #5 looked both toward the church and town square one direction and with a view looking up a narrow village street the other. Both vistas were spectacular and changed constantly as the days light played across their facades. The room #was large with good sized private bath. It was nicely quiet with the except of the occasional church bells (more on that) and interestingly furnished. The large expanse of windows featured motorized shutters for room darkening - if you wished. Ah yes, the church bells again! They are the perfect sound along with the timeless views to draw you back in time and space to another era. Their time was when the city gates were locked at night and the watchtowers and ramparts were part of village’s defense. At that time this wonderful inn was a grand 16th century residence.
Dorothy the owner/hostess was perfect. Immediately upon our arrival she greeted us and gave a quick tutorial on the Inn, village, local shops, WiFi, breakfast and dinning. She had a young man carry our luggage up the winding stone stair case and even gave a key for our comings and goings. Breakfast was served with our choice of locations.......... courtyard, bar, town square, or dining area inside. The breakfast was fresh, filling and tasty. As Dorothy suggested, we had dinner at Le Jardin de Lys. There the view across the French countryside was breathtaking. However, the dinner there was just OK.