A short one hour drive east of Quebec City and you are in the picturesque Charlevoix region along the St Lawrence River. Named after a Jesuit historian, the beauty of this region is postcard perfect. I am on my way to Le Manoir Hortensia, a Charlevoix B&B I am calling home for two nights. It is located in the village of Saint-Irénée and a short drive to many of the many attractions in Charlevoix, like the town of La Malbaie and L’Isle-aux-Coudres. Both are on my must visit list so choosing Le Manoir Hortensia as my home away from home makes perfect sense as it is close to both yet offers the tranquillity of a country escape. Plus it has the best view of the St Lawrence River you could ask for.
Upon arrival at this charming Charlevoix B&B I am immediately welcomed by my hosts Mario and Pierre, who could not be nicer. They immediately show me to my room which is located on the lower level of the house. They have five suites to choose from and the one I’ve selected is the ground level suite with a walk out to the garden.
Room amenities include a desk, three piece bathroom suite and my own private patio with bistro table for morning coffees or evening chill time. Chances are good I may witness some Deer in the garden. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.
Now that I’m settled I head back upstairs to meet with Mario and Pierre. They want to help me out with itinerary suggestions and offer some advice on the region. My first question is where can I go for a great meal. It is Victoria Day across English Canada and National Patriotes Day in Quebec which means some restaurants may be closed or equally busy. Without asking they actually call three places until they find one that they think I’ll like that has room for me and they place a reservation in my name! This is service. I’ll share my dinner experiences in another post, but be assured my meal was amazing.
Early the next morning I rise to the smell of fresh coffee and baking. Breakfast each morning of my stay is unique and my first breakfast is made up of a dried fruit and banana cup followed by a Quiche with Ham and local cheeses from Fromagerie St-Fidèle. They also make me a fresh Americano each morning. I’m in heaven.
As I eat breakfast Pierre sits down with me and brings out a map. They have a plan for my first full day in Charlevoix and they lay it out for me. It is amazing and I expect to get tonnes of great photos. If you think this is special treatment for me because I’m a writer guess again. They do this with every guest that wants help.
When I return from my first day’s adventure a glass of wine is waiting for me and the hot tub is calling out my name. A little soak before bed is the perfect way to end a perfect day.
I wake up the next day to a new breakfast, more mapping out plans with Pierre and a plan to meet them for dinner at one of their favourite little places. This is beyond what I expected and it really made my first visit to Charlevoix special.
I have enjoyed many fine accommodations and hosts over my years of travelling and adventures, but rarely have I stayed at a property where I felt sad to leave. In two short nights, I made friends. You can believe I am already plotting a return visit to Le Manoir Hortensia. Perhaps I will use my time there as a writing retreat or maybe I will explore more of the wonders of the region. Either way, I can’t recommend Mario and Pierre at Le Manoir Hortensia strongly enough. There is a reason guests have come back year after year.
If you are looking for a place to call home when you explore Charlevoix, please check out Le Manoir Hortensia. It offers tranquillity and a great location where you can access all of Charlevoix within an hours drive.