About Les Merles by REB - Les Merles by REB


“My wife and I always dreamed of a gastronomic paradise in rural France. In 2003, we found Château les Merles, a beautiful castle located in a wooded valley in the Dordogne region. It was love at first sight. 

With lots of devotion, an eye for detail and endless patience, we restored the castle to all its former glory. Besides our fifteen hotel rooms, every day in our top-quality gourmet restaurant we serve our guests the many fine things that French country cuisine has to offer.  

And now we’re about to complete our life’s work: we have been presented with the unique opportunity − in cooperation with REB Projects − of realising a limited number of high-quality villas and apartments among the vineyards and plum trees that surround the castle. 

Welcome to Les Merles!" 

Jan van Grinsven 



In 2003, Jan van Grinsven, a self-professed gourmand and a native of Brabant in the Netherlands, purchased Château les Merles with the aim of turning it into a boutique hotel. With patience, love and excellent taste, he has developed the castle and the surrounding estate into a stylish oasis of tranquillity and first-class gastronomy, with fifteen hotel rooms and a fantastic restaurant. Every day he takes great pleasure in serving his guests all the good things that France has to offer. On the estate surrounding the Château, Jan van Grinsven is building a limited number of detached holiday villas and apartments in three phases in cooperation with REB Projects.  


Les Merles means ‘the blackbirds’, which is certainly not a randomly chosen name. It refers to the fact that the Château is situated in the middle of the rolling hills of Dordogne, which are overflowing with flora and fauna. The surrounding countryside is green, wooded and hilly, and because there is no industry here the region officially has the cleanest air in Europe. Moreover, it is extremely safe. The climate is very mild, with long summers and short temperate winters. Les Merles is a stone’s throw from Bergerac, while the vibrant city of Bordeaux is just one hour away.  


Dordogne is the birthplace of French cuisine and offers you limitless possibilities to enjoy its culinary delights. Nearby Thiviers is France’s foie gras capital, and the best truffles in the world come from Sorges, a short distance away. When the hunting season opens in the autumn, you can find delicious game dishes on the menu everywhere in the region. And as we already mentioned, the restaurant at the Château is one of the best in the region!


The region around Bergerac is called Perigord Pourpre after the skin of the grape. The region’s vineyards, originally built by the Romans, border those of Bordeaux and produce very interesting wines every year. The famous Chateau Monbazillac dessert wine comes from this region, as does an entire series of high-quality red wines such as those from Pécharmant.  


The region around Les Merles is a delight for the senses. The area is well known for its medieval villages and towns, cave paintings, annual folk festivals and, of course, the many antique markets where you can browse endlessly as you search for that must-have item. It’s a feast for the eyes and ears! 


In Dordogne, you can still enjoy the traditional, unspoilt outdoor life. If you like cycling or walking, prepare yourself for some of the most beautiful routes in France. And if you like to be even more active, you can go mountain biking, swimming, jogging and canoeing. Of course, life in France is not complete without a languid game of jeu de boules under the sycamore trees. At the Château, you also have your own 9-hole, par 35 golf course nestled in between the plum trees and the vineyards.  


Château les Merles is just a 15-minute drive from Bergerac airport. There are direct flights into Bergerac airport from Amsterdam, Brussels and the following UK airports: Manchester, Leeds, Bristol, London City, London Stansted, Brimingham, Exeter, Liverpool, Southampton.

All in all, from these places it takes about three hours from door to door, so your villa is accessible for short excursions and quiet and relaxing weekends. And at your request, the Château staff will make sure that your refrigerator is filled, the beds are made and the Chablis is nice and cool.  

Two other international airports are within one and a half hour drive away, offering flights to almost all the capitals across Europe. There is also a direct flight from Aéroport de Bordeaux to Montréal.




We warmly invite you to enjoy a taste of the good life at Les Merles. So why not book your ticket now to Bergerac and arrange to stay in the Château? Allow yourself to be welcomed by the hospitality of Jan van Grinsven and to be amazed by the beautiful surroundings and the region’s fantastic food and wine.

Please find out about this unique project