We have stayed with Irene and Michael 5 times in 5 years and we don't normally go back to the same place so they must be doing something special! The Chateau is beautiful - clean, atmospheric, spacious. Warm and welcoming whatever the weather. The moment you are welcomed through the front door you're at home. Michael and Irene have become real friends and we look forward to our visits every year. They cannot do enough for you and as has been said over and again in previous reviews, Irene is a fantastic cook who takes great care to meet your preferences and both are fascinating people to talk to. I would go so far as to say that for all the wonderful attractions in the local area you could not spend a better day then sitting in their beautiful kitchen chewing fat and putting the world to rights with your hosts. We have travelled extensively around the world but found nowhere we would rather spend a few days than at this idyllic spot.
Des hôtes passionnés et généreux vous ouvriront les portes d un endroit magique ! Un rendez vous pour les amoureux de la nature et des vraies valeurs, sans négliger la subtilité de la cuisine d Irene. Merci à Michael et Irene pour ce séjour des plus agréables, en votre compagnie. Nathalie, Alain et nos 2 loups blancs accueillis avec votre charmante délicatesse. A consommer sans modération.
If you want idyllic surroundings, being close to the Loire Chateaux, having fantastic hosts providing great conversation, superb food and local knowledge then this is a MUST for you. Michael & Irene worked very hard to provide the holiday we wanted. They know the best places to visit, the language of course and they helped us relax as well. The Chateau is very comfortable and the grounds are extensive. We will definitely be back in the summer to make more use of the grounds and to visit the beautiful Sologne villages nearby.
We must have stayed with Michael (from Los Angeles) and Irene (a Parisian) a dozen times over the last five years. We have tried many other hotels and B&B’s in the area but have yet to find anywhere nearly as good. The first plus point is the welcome, they both show a genuine pleasure to see you. If it is summer, you then relax on their terrace with drinks and canapés looking out over the parkland surrounding the chateau towards the lake. In winter, you are led into their luxurious lounge with a roaring fire and unwind from the day. The next joy is dinner; Irene is a superb cook and meals are delicious, stylish and plentiful. We end up chatting long into the evening over the last of the wine with our cosmopolitan hosts. The enormous beds are supremely comfortable in bedrooms overlooking the parkland. On a special occasion we travelled with them in their 1927 Bentley convertible around the vineyards of Sancerre. Just writing this makes us look forward to our next visit.
In my two trips to chateau Brinon I had one lovely adventure after another. Michael and Irene are exceptional hosts. Michael always has a story or idea, irene has the French history and culinary skills to melt you. The location is perfect for touring the loire valleys chateaus and the wine region of sancerre. plus the grounds include acres of land, a river, deer, even fresh Chantelle mushrooms at the right season. You will thoroughly enjoy yourself.
We have stayed at Chateau Brinon on three occasions over the last four years and can attest to the great ratings that hosts, Irene (French) and Michael Schnaer (American), get on other travel related web sites. The three B&B rooms are spacious, clean and the beds very comfortable. Irene is a fantastic cook--we always book a dinner on our arrival night and book at least one other dinner during our stay. The food and ambiance are wonderful. Irene tailors evening meals to the guests’ desires, using only fresh ingredients found in the local markets. The price (27 euros) is extremely reasonable. We have dined there at least six times and have never been disappointed. After dinner we head for the outside veranda or relax in the comfy living room, replete with a full size billiards (pool) table to enjoy. Chateau Brinon was originally a 17th century hunting “lodge” (the rich sure knew how to live in those days!) and is located on over 50 acres of forested land. The peaceful Sauldre River is at the rear of the property, only a short hike through the woods on trails. In the early morning or evening it is common to see small roe deer grazing, literally in the back yard. It is just a great place to kick back and relax at the end of a long day of "touristing". The Chateau is the perfect “base for operations” for visiting the many sights in or near the Loire Valley. Our favorite nearby town (15 minutes), is Aubigny-sur-Nere, a beautiful village with several nice restaurants with sidewalk dining, cute shops and, surprisingly, a strong Scottish heritage. Day trips can easily include some of the Loire's top chateaux (like Chenonceau & Chambord), historic Orleans, medieval timbered Bourges (highly recommended), wine tastings (like Sancerre), the Gien faience factory store outlet and many places in between. Michael and Irene could not be any more gracious hosts and will happily help plan your day trips and provide valuable tips on things to see and do.