Book early for 2024 .... we are expecting a busy year!
Room by Room
A fitted modern kitchen with stone sink, ceramic halogen hob, eye-level multi-function oven/grill, twin refrigerators, separate freezer, coffee machine, dishwasher and washing machine.
Linked to the kitchen through an original stone archway, the dining room features exposed oak beams, full sized fireplace with canopy, large farmhouse table with seating for eight, and the stairs up to Chambre Antoine. A high-chair is also provided. Below the stairs is a writing desk with the Livebox5 fibre-to-the-house broadband router.
The lounge is comfortably appointed with quality furniture, stone benching, and provided with plenty of books and traditional games. There’s UK satellite TV & radio, a DVD player with a large collection of family films and an Audio Pro sound system that also provides bluetooth outdoor streaming.
Double French doors lead out to the garden.
A cosy, quiet room looking out to the woods.
Used as either an escape from the children or, by using the ClikClak in its bed mode, becomes a compact downstairs double bedroom. Bring your paints too! Clement features pictures and drawings of Maison Boye kindly donated by previous guests.
Large walk-in style glass panel shower with toilet and washbasin. Conveniently located on the ground floor to provide easy showering before/after a swim, and also, because it's next to Chambre Clement, can be used as this bedroom's "nearly ensuite".
With its own staircase from the dining room, Antoine features a natural wood floor, double bed, and a hidden "walk-in" wardrobe.
Antoine's ensuite has a bespoke glass shower cabin, boutique toilet, and a designer washbasin installation, all set off with blue tinted mood lighting.
A large and airy bedroom with flexibility in how it’s used.
The most popular configuration for Baptiste is to have a jumbo double under the flowing canopy with two singles at the far end. This is ideal for parents with young children (a cot is also available) who want them nearby, or just as a very spacious double bedroom.
Another arrangement is to uncouple the divans that make up the double and then have the room set out as four singles – great fun for older children to share as a dormitory.
Baptiste also features a writing desk and Sony Playstation with games to suit all ages.
Large bath with dual high/low shower, twin washbasins and toilet. Conveniently situated between Baptiste and Delphine
A farmhouse style room with double bed, exposed beams, and a windowed pigeonier feature characteristic of the region.
About the area
Maison Boye is set in an idyllic location within walking distance of the bustling medieval market town of Caylus. This is in a region of outstanding natural beauty, with limestone plains, wooded valleys and dramatic gorges.
Caylus offers visitors the chance to sample this area's fabulous gastronomy - from simple breads baked in wood burning stoves and excellent local cheeses, through incredibly tasty duck and pork dishes, all the way up to bargain priced fine dining- and all accompanied by crisp white and plumy deep red wines - which you can try before you buy at the local "caves".
Caylus will give you a warm welcome - yet isn't spoilt by tourism or the overly English summer invasion that occurs in the Dordogne or Provence.
Here you will find genuinely pleasant locals who are pleased to see you, and who will patiently try to understand your best school French!
If you enjoy the simple pleasures of relaxing around the pool, country walks, and eating out in friendly restaurants - then this is the place for you!
For the more energetic, there are tennis courts within walking distance of the house, sports activities at the lake, white water canoeing a few miles away at St Antonin, horse riding and golf not far away. This is also a region where the arts feature strongly - from regular live music, often free, to crafts, museums and art galleries. The world famous Toulouse-Lautrec gallery is at Albi.
If your preference is to stay up all night, you could just sit out at Maison Boye and be fascinated by the incredibly clear view of the Milky Way thanks to the remarkably little light pollution - or you could visit one of the two nightclubs that are in easy reach.
The pictures above are of Caylus, its market square and lakeside restaurant - whilst the pictures below are of the front dining room at Renaissance (it also has street tables and a delightful rear summer terrace), the volleyball courts at the lakeside, and the 2016 Tour de France passing through.
Booking information & Scam protection
To reserve a holiday simply let us know your dates by emailing email@example.com.
or by calling us at home on 01487 840761.
After confirming the arrangements, we'll ask you to please download the booking forms, fill them in and post them back to us.
The house rent is unaffected by the number of guests staying and includes all local rates and taxes, reasonable gas, water, electricity and broadband consumption, as well as house cleaning and pool maintenance etc.
We ask for a 25% booking deposit, with the balance due 8 weeks before your holiday starts. A returnable inventory deposit of £150 is included to cover any lost keys, serious breakages or telephone/excessive broadband usage.
In fairness to smaller party sizes we don't hide the cost of a full house of laundry in with the rent, but instead allow for the varying number of beds and towels provided with a £25 per person laundry service (includes sheets, duvet covers, pillow cases, bathroom towels and tea cloths). There is a baby cot with mattress available, but no laundry is included. Gas used for central heating is metered and charged at £3 per hour.
Payments and deposit refunds are made by online banking.
Changeovers are usually on Saturdays but we can be flexible outside of the main summer season to take advantage of cheaper flights or to fill a reduced price gap.
To allow time for cleaning between lets, occupancy runs from 4pm on the day of arrival, to 10am on the day of departure.
You are obviously responsible for your own self-catering provisions, but to get you off to a good start we provide fresh soaps, toilet & kitchen rolls, bin bags, and a good helping of dishwasher and washing machine tablets etc.
On receipt of the forms and deposit (or full payment if less than 8 weeks before the holiday starts), we confirm the dates as fully booked in writing and send you our Arrivals Information pack.
The inventory deposit is refunded, less any deductions, after the keys are returned and we have received the itemised bills that cover your period of occupancy. This is usually within a couple of months of the end of your stay.
We welcome family groups, couples and well behaved pets, but don't accept bookings for events such as stag or hen parties. In case of doubt, references may be required.
We have never suffered from any scam at Maison Boye, nor has anyone ever been scammed in connection with Maison Boye - but we thought it best to include this guidance because of recent scare stories, and because we want all our clients to know how to make sure that their bookings are perfectly safe.
The reported incidents are where scammers pretend to be the owners of overseas villas by advertising a copy of a real villa's details. They take bookings and payments from unsuspecting holidaymakers, who then go on to arrive and find the place is already occupied by the real owner's guests. Scammers can make themselves seem credible by offering "proofs", such as utility bills, that are either fake or have been cunningly obtained by posing as a cautious holidaymaker and asking the real owner to provide them!
Fortunately, there are also some helpful articles around giving advice on how to handle this situation, so we are pleased to list below some of the recommended ways you can verify the validity of your booking.
Are you looking at a genuine advertisement?
We only promote Maison Boye on one specialist website, Simply Owners, with late offers sometimes listed on eBay or Gumtree. If you've seen it anywhere else, then you are probably looking at an unauthorised advertisement – although we have spotted it appearing on recommendation sites that we were unaware of. In any case, all genuine advertisements will steer you towards our own website boye.co.uk.
Are you dealing with the real owner?
We are Paul & Claire Downham. Our email address of firstname.lastname@example.org
is obviously a pretty good clue, and if you ask us any question about the house, the area, or travel arrangements, etc. we will know the answer.
You can go to any WHOIS search facility to check the ownership of the boye.co.uk domain name and you will see that it is registered to us via Netnames back in August 2000 ... and that's a very good test of authenticity, because while scammers can set up believable fake domain names, they can't backdate them!
MOST IMPORTANTLY - Who are you paying?
We process all deposits and final balances into our personal bank account by online banking, so all transfers will be verified by your bank before payment as going to us by name. All posted correspondence goes to or from our home address in Cambridgeshire. You should NOT be paying anything to anyone else ... no agents, no intermediaries, no cash, no card payments.
Have you got a key?
Our policy is to send you a numbered and returnable front door key by post a few weeks before you are due to stay, and when this isn't possible such as in the rare case of a very late booking, we may use an on-site emergency key. Any other suggested arrangement, such as greeting you on site, or supplying a KeySafe code etc., would be wrong.
Over the years, we have been pleasantly surprised by the number of visitors who have either recommended Maison Boye to their friends or come back again themselves - so we know that we must be providing a good combination of service and value.
However, we have always welcomed visitors feedback and comments - even the few criticisms, as this has enabled us to put right and improve aspects where we were not even aware of there being any problem.
So we took this a stage further, and asked everyone who stayed one year if they wouldn't mind completing a short questionnaire telling us what they thought of their whole holiday experience, from their initial booking right through to everything we provide, the house itself, the local staff, and anything else they could think of.
The suggestions we had back resulted in lots of small but important touches - such as additional sun shade, a bigger wooden table for the patio, more DVDs for children, a place to hang keys, and a proper clothes line!
Guests also wanted to keep up with events in English, so we replaced the French TV system with a digital satellite service that receives all UK radio and TV channels from FreeView together with the others on FreeSat. The WiFi was expanded with repeaters to cover all the rooms as well as outside around the pool, and a speaker system provided to play your own devices.
Here are the latest copies of our house documents in PDF format.
Click on any image to open up the contents for viewing, downloading or searching.
If your PDF browser doesn't display a search box, hold down the Ctrl button then press F.
2024 House Book
26 pages of information covering
everything you need to know about
the house, its equipment and the
Indesit Washing machine
Washing cycles, controls, and
Controls, options and
Kenwood Combination Oven
Controls, operating instructions and
Logik Ceramic Hob
Controls, operating instructions,
safey lock and timer guide.
Dolce Gusto Coffee Machine
Controls, general information,
coffee options and cleaning guide.
Audio Pro Sound System
Operating instructions, charging
and linking to devices.
Number of Guests
We say "from couples up to groups of ten, ideal for four to eight" - and feel this needs some explanation.
The sleeping arrangements at Boye have been designed to offer flexible accommodation, and can be readily suited to extended families or for sharing.
For example, Baptiste
is usually set up as a jumbo double under the flowing canopy with two singles at the far end. This makes it ideal for parents with young children (a cot is also available) who want them nearby, or just as a very spacious double bedroom. But another arrangement is to uncouple the divans that make up the double and then have the room set out as four singles – great fun for older children to share as a dormitory.
is a double bedded room located on the same landing as Baptiste, separated by the family bathroom. This makes Delphine particularly suitable for the parents of children staying in Baptiste.
has its own ensuite and separate stairs, so is ideal for those requiring some privacy, such as grandparents.
is useful for overnight guests, a teenager's getaway, or for those who find steep stairs difficult. This room features a ClicClak – the French alternative to sofa-beds, where the unit is a full sized double bed that folds up to make a large sofa, rather than the UK way of having a normal sofa that unfolds into an inferior bed.
However, although these combinations sleep up to ten, eleven if you include the cot, we wouldn't recommend Maison Boye for a booking of that size.
Mixed adult/child bookings of four to eight are much more typical - where the dining and patio tables, poolside and lounge seating etc., are all going to be ample, and everyone will have plenty of space.
During the LOW season, we also regularly let to discerning couples who appreciate the value of renting a proper family house rather than the cramped and restricted properties designed for two person accommodation.
When you stay at Maison Boye, you have exclusive use of the whole house, grounds and pool, and you are not overlooked by anyone ... so that's total privacy and all to yourselves!
Location, Location, Location!
It took us three years of searching 25 years ago to find this magical combination of an idyllic rural retreat with a nearby bustling market town.
Maison Boye has open countryside to the south, is sheltered by oak woodlands to the north, and is approached by a quiet single track lane – making it a delightfully restful place to stay … yet within a few minutes you can be shopping, banking, fine dining, or just having a night out on the town – and that makes this location very special.
Maison Boye is a traditional stone built property, set in its own grounds of over an acre, thoughtfully restored and converted to provide modern living within its original style, charm and features.
Exposed oak beams, walls a yard thick, a traditional log fireplace, quarry tile floors, rustic terracotta roof ... combined with bright modern bathrooms and kitchen and a host of home entertainments. A raised patio, featuring a stone barbecue, is set below an attractive bamboo pergola ... ideal for relaxed summer meals al fresco.
From here, the gently sloping sun terrace, equipped with smart wooden sunloungers and a swing seat, leads down to the private swimming pool ... and for the restless, an external WiFi repeater provides outside internet coverage too.
The swimming pool is a generous 10m x 5m with semi-circular Roman steps into the shallow end, a water slide into the deep end, and with halogen underwater lighting for the evenings.
It features automatic filtering using the latest environmentally friendly low chlorine water treatments and, rather than surround the pool with unsightly fencing, we have elected to install a sophisticated alarm system to comply with the strict safety rules.
Maison Boye has open countryside to the south, which means the garden and pool benefit from the maximum sunshine, whilst to the north it is sheltered by the attractive oak woodland typical of this Quercy region.
The secluded grounds are reached by a long tree-lined drive, with the nearest neighbours about a quarter of a mile away. However, Maison Boye is far from isolated.
The Medieval market town of Caylus, set in the River Bonnet valley, with all its shops, bars and restaurants is reached within a few minutes by car or, more pleasantly, by a stroll down the quiet country lane ... where you could meet a friendly donkey along the way who loves to be fed some grass, or maybe the cows en-route to milking, or even a baby lizard basking in the sunshine.
Getting to Caylus has also become much easier recently. There is now a wide choice of low cost flights to the area (aim for Toulouse, Rodez, Brive or Carcassonne) - and for those who prefer to drive, the completion of the new French motorways to within ten miles of the house has made the journey from Calais a more relaxing and quicker trip.
La france profonde:
Maison Boye is a very old building set in a relaxed rural location, so whilst having immense rustic charm and character, it doesn't provide the clinical conditions of a modern identikit hotel. The thick stone walls are home to nature, so expect to see some insects, be fascinated by the lizards, maybe a mouse in the house, a wild boar in the woods, and cows in the fields. There are exposed oak beams you can walk into, floors at differing levels between rooms, and the possibility of power cuts during thunderstorms. The grounds are a French idyll, not an English rose garden - expect wild flowers, mole hills, natural borders, outcrops of rock and lots of space and fresh air. Maison Boye is a lovely place to stay, a wonderful retreat for walks, rest and the easy going pace of backwater France ... but this country style is not for everyone ...city folk may find the total dark of night and lack of background traffic noise unsettling, obsessive-compulsive cleaners will lose the fight against cobwebs, and hyper active families will have to force themselves to relax and unwind.
Maison Boye - the perfect location ... idyllic rural privacy within walking distance of bustling Caylus town