A 14th-century fairytale castle on the banks of the Dordogne River, the Château de la Treyne oozes history. It’s been a home to knights and noblemen since medieval times, as well as to the Louvre Museum’s Egyptian collection during the Second World War.

Little wonder, then, that current owners, Stephanie and Philippe Gombert, wanted to add their own chapter to the story. “20 years ago, my mother-in-law was running the château as a B&B and we used to come down at weekends to help her out,” says Stephanie.

The husband and wife team now run the château as a prestigious Relais & Châteaux hotel with its own Michelin-starred chef.“We wanted to give these wonderful old stones a new lease of life,” Stephanie continues enthusiastically. “The place was getting a bit run down, but we had grand plans! It’s an absolute passion project.” Despite having no experience of the hotel trade, Stephanie and Philippe quit corporate life in Paris and never looked back.

The Château de la Treyne now has 17 sumptuous bedrooms each with a unique identity and in keeping with the historic surroundings. The hotel restaurant also now holds a Michelin star. It’s run by chef Stéphane Andrieux, who has worked with the couple since the beginning and uses locally-sourced produce and organic vegetables grown on site.

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“He’s exceptional,” explains Stephanie. “He’s only ever worked in Michelin-starred kitchens and after coming to the château he got his star in a matter of months.” The château’s grounds stretch across nearly 300 acres and there’s something for everyone, from formal gardens to a forest, plus a heated infinity pool and tennis courts. Stephanie runs the château day-to-day heading a team of 35 staff catering to visitors’ every need. “I describe what we offer guests as the ‘A to Z’ of service. Nothing is too much trouble,” she says. “I want guests to really feel at ease here.”

The secret to the Château de la Treyne’s success? Stephanie is absolutely clear: “You can only make something like this work if you have a wonderful team moving forward together, with the same vision, passion and drive.”

Discover Southern Europe magazine | DSC_4491nb black and white owners photo

The Château de la Treyne is run by husband and wife team Stephanie and Philippe Gombert.

Web: chateaudelatreyne.com

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