(54 Posts)
laurawaterford Thu 17-Aug-06 16:33:59

We have just returned from Brittany and stayed at this 'site'. We booked it in February after fairly extensive searching, accessing their website, speaking to them etc.. When we arrived, expecting a ninehole golf course, go-kart track, tennis, private swmming pool, restaurant, as well as our accommodation which was a converted 16th century chapel, our accommodation had bat droppings on the bed daily, and bats flying around our bedroom at night, a dead GOAT in the unusable go-kart tract, our private swimming pool was a raised plastic tub. The general indoor heated swimming pool didnt appear to exist, there was no tennis court, we only found 3 golf holes, the restaurant didnt open at all, open cesspits, burning hot water out of the taps, no water in showers or loos for hours, on different days. The setting was idyllic, on the edge of a lake. However the chateau had been demolished in the 1970s and what is referred to as the chateau is in fact a poorly converted stable block. Our furniture was shabby and there was lino on the floor, and broken door handles, doors that couldnt close, leaky showers, broken handrails on the stairs, the list goes on and on . The owners, I think, are probably nice people but cannot cope, and are dishonest about the way they market the place: I dont think they deliberately lie - just use poetic license. We are shattered from lack of sleep, too much usual cooking (no restaurant and no barbeque as promised), and the sheer disappointment of coming all the way from Ireland to that. We paid 2600 euro for the accommodation alone for the two weeks. Not cheap.

Pamina3 Thu 17-Aug-06 16:36:08

That's horrendous, you poor things There's nothing worse than a crap holiday you've looked forward to for ages and spent your hard-earned cash on. Did you take photographic evidence of it all? Could you put in a complaint somewhere?

laurawaterford Thu 17-Aug-06 16:51:46

thanks pamina3. We did take photos! As soon as we arrived, we knew something was WRONG. NO-ONE around, barn full of rusty machinery, and old cars. No reception. However when we owner arrived after 30 minutes or so (and we only seeing one other person in that whole time) he wouldnt give us our money back. We agreed a compromise - he would give us following week back if we hadnt been "won over" (??!!) by then (beaten into submission by exhaustion from sleepless nights with bats more like). We went to the tourist board in the nearest town. They were VERY helpful and took our details with a view to making it a formal complaint. They told us (good tip this!) that we are always entitled to a FULL refund if the facilities/accommodation do not meet our expectations. We left a week later, with cheque (that cleared), to other accomm tourist office had found us - but had to have two separate studios, APART from each other, cos we are a family of 7. one of our children is special needs, and the new site was busy busy busy, and he was totally out his depth and caused us a lot of worry. Hence our careful handpicking of the medium sized, chateau de fretay facilities - he loves the action, but we need to know he is safe!!

Report it on Tripadvisor

Do you have a link to their website?

laurawaterford Thu 17-Aug-06 17:00:28

Good idea! Can i do that cos i assumed they only reviewed hotels etc that they advertised?

No I think you can post anything

laurawaterford Thu 17-Aug-06 17:04:28

Right. Thanks I will definately do that. Months of anticipation (we even had family 'meetings' to chose holiday that suited us all (how sad is that?!), months of saving money and days of bloody packing!!! all for that!!

here is is you can also attach photos

Twinkie1 Thu 17-Aug-06 17:07:35

What a nightmare - glad you got your money back - although I bet that small recompense really!!

Put it on Holiday though - we always look on there - except this year but I wish we bloody had!!

laurawaterford Thu 17-Aug-06 21:59:15

I have just done my review of tripadviser. Its very long!! twinkie1, why do you wish you had looked at holidaytruths (I have sent my review to them) was your own holiday not great?

noonar Sun 20-Aug-06 12:46:23

chateau de fretay

noonar Sun 20-Aug-06 12:54:51

sorry dont know what happened there, must be going mad..posted too early!

laura you wont believe this, we stayed there in 2002!!!! it was pretty tired then. dd was 4 mnths old. come to think of it thae accom was CRAP! i was such a downtrodden , shellshocked new mum at that time, though, it didnt occur to me to complain. i particulaly remember the beeding and matresse...yuk. had the feeling of an unconverted barn. grounds were pretty but unmaintained.

the silver lining for us was that we had a second week in a beautiful cottage in dinan. this helped to rescue the holiday.

laurawaterford Mon 28-Aug-06 13:44:07

Hi Noonar,

Sorry a bit late responding. I had family staying and have only just got a turn on the computer!

I have posted on tripadviser now. Hubby simply put in 'chateau le Fretay' in the search engine and my review came up straight away - he hadn't even put in tripadviser. So 'ouch' for the owners - anyone looking up their website will get a poor review. It would be easy to feel bad about it, but truelly they marketed themselves incorrectly and ruined our holiday - and many others, if the private messages I am receiving are anything to go by.

lillabean Mon 28-Aug-06 20:43:41

You really should report them as bats (and their droppings) in human accomodation is not only upleasant- it's a down right health risk!!!

That is absolutely unacceptable.

You should report them to the local health inspector who monitors tourist accomadation.

laurawaterford Thu 31-Aug-06 21:36:55

Hi lillabean.

I have just found out that bats are a health hazard - apparently they carry rabies? I very naievely, believed the owner when he told me bats were fine to have around (that sounds as tho I put up with it - I didnt and we left after our first week. We stayed as long as we did because we are a party of 7, and tried hard to find other accomm and couldnt. Also we had already paid)

Just out of interest, what other health hazards do bats pose? (as I quickly go down hill thinking about it..)
Actually, we have reported them to the french authorities and they have taken it very seriously. Altho the owners got into my the other day threatening legal action if I didnt remove my review (including pics!!) from He told me the authorities had been round and all was well in eden. (the french authorities assured me this wasnt the case)

sorry about this very garbled message.

HeidiBlake Tue 07-Sep-10 09:39:44

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

Hassled Tue 07-Sep-10 09:44:17

There's been a murrderrr! Bloody hell shock.

Heidi - this is a very old thread but I think laurawaterford is still on mumsnet - there's a contact poster link on the right of her name.

happyland Tue 07-Sep-10 09:44:46

What a way to resurrect a thread! Wasn't expecting that. What happened?

Portofino Tue 07-Sep-10 09:47:49

Oooh - a murder!! A MN Mystery!

hugglymugly Tue 07-Sep-10 09:49:05
thatsnotmymonkey Tue 07-Sep-10 09:54:21

Holy shit, marking my place!

orangina Tue 07-Sep-10 10:15:09


Hassled Tue 07-Sep-10 10:15:59

I love how apt the thread title is now.

I still can't get my head around the bats flying around the bedroom. I suspect that doesn't reflect well on me - more horrified by the bats than the murder.

jenpet Tue 07-Sep-10 11:15:13

This is all over the French local papers as well confused

BenignNeglect Tue 07-Sep-10 11:20:09

Place marking here too

JacquesTestard Tue 07-Sep-10 12:29:14

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

BollockBrain Tue 07-Sep-10 12:36:58

bloody hell, sounds as if it is straight out of a novel.


Do you think they're investigating the murder of the goat?

Portofino Tue 07-Sep-10 13:12:25

Well the Hall's certainly sounded like an "interesting" couple! Their poor children! sad

notalone Tue 07-Sep-10 14:17:57


FiveGoMadInDorset Tue 07-Sep-10 14:28:29

I love the way the comments have steered away from the actual murder, and are now discussing the high cost of living.

mrsplant Wed 08-Sep-10 10:06:02

Hi, I stayed here in Summer 2006 too, with a group of friends and totally agree with Laura's comments. The whole place had gone to rack and ruin through neglect and lack of maintenance and management.
Joanne and Robert Hall were very obviously heavy drinkers though, very possibly alcoholics, although they were amiable hosts, to us at least.
I was very shocked to hear about this incident (as were my friends). It's very sad, but maybe a testament to what alcoholism can do to lives.


BerryLellow Wed 08-Sep-10 10:17:01


tpsontour Wed 08-Sep-10 15:20:55

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

mrsplant Thu 09-Sep-10 11:51:05

Can someone tell me, what does "marking" or "place marking" mean? smile

FioFio Thu 09-Sep-10 16:51:36

Message deleted

TheDuchessOfNorks Thu 09-Sep-10 18:13:35

mrsplant, 'marking' means the thread will come up on "threads I'm on" later when the marker can read all the details at their leisure. :smile:

The Hall's do sound like alcoholics, terribly sad for their children.

jonronson Mon 04-Oct-10 10:51:07

Hey. Nervous to come back onto mumsnet - my previous appearance didn't go brilliantly. But I was wondering, if laurawaterford and mrsplant read this, can they possibly email me - jon @ jonronson dot com - because I'm hoping to ask you a question about the Chateau.



ilovedplaydays Fri 15-Oct-10 10:17:19

Hi. I'm intrigued to see chateau de crape resurrected! Have not read all the messages yet, so have to do that. I am laurawaterford, unfortunately I cannot log under that any longer for some reason - think cos I can't access my old email site. Anyway, hence my new name.

Happy to be back!!

ilovedplaydays Fri 15-Oct-10 10:25:19

bloody hell!! Just read it quickly, about the murder. Wow! Poor, poor, poor kids.

AnyFuleKno Fri 15-Oct-10 10:56:02

horrifying turn of events

AnyFuleKno Sat 16-Oct-10 01:00:36

By the way, hello Jon Ronson grin. Best way for you to contact those posters would be to private message them - click on "message poster" on the line where their name appears and they'll get an email notification. Hope that's not a patronising explanation (patronising means "to talk down to someone")

sux2bsanta Sat 08-Jan-11 00:43:10

And here is his article in todays guardian which linked back to here... dream-turned-sour-jon-ronson

ChippyMinton Sat 08-Jan-11 10:40:53
AnyFuleKno Sat 08-Jan-11 11:01:50

Very interesting and macabre story indeed

coastgirl Sat 08-Jan-11 17:47:48

When I read that article I didn't expect to end up back at MN. Terrible story.

bluebump Sat 08-Jan-11 17:50:50

I thought that article in the magazine today was something to do with this thread!

Hassled Sat 08-Jan-11 20:08:59

I was just searching for this thread to link to the article but you're there ahead of me. All very sad.

AnyFuleKno Sat 08-Jan-11 20:50:20

it is to do with this thread bluebump - isn't the Laura of this thread the Laura in the article? Jon Ronson must have contacted her from here

TheFoosa Sun 09-Jan-11 11:32:41

just read the Guardian article then googled and this thread was top search shock

amazing story, so sorry for their children

thumbwitch Sun 09-Jan-11 11:47:52

Good crikey, what a sad story. Poor children indeed - and poor woman.

plupervert Sun 16-Jan-11 21:47:23

Isn't "murder" a little premature? And possibly prejudicial?

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