Serene, classic comfort: gorgeous cruising in the Upper Loire
Hotel Barge Renaissance accommodates just eight guests in elegant, country-house style where fine furniture and fabrics have been specially chosen with your comfort in mind. Beautifully appointed, she reflects an ambience of taste and culture, providing timeless quality for your complete pleasure.
Relax on the spacious sun deck as you cruise the delightful waterways of the Upper Loire from Chatillon sur Loire to Montargis on the Canal de Briare. Steeped in history, this region provides beautiful scenery, small country villages and is famed for the wonderful white wines of Sancerre.
Style: The 'nature' of the hotel barge. Outline subjective guidance as to the quality or comfort level that might be expected on board.
Price Band: Per person. Outline guidance only, on a relative or comparative basis. The bands do not represent accurate low or high season rates.
Hotel Barge Renaissance :: Key Features
- Grand Luxe class (5*)
- Canal de Briare, Upper Loire
- Charter and cabin bookings, 6 nights, 7 days, April to October
- 8 guests / 4 suites of 250 sq ft including ensuite bathroom
- Individually controlled air conditioning and heating
- King size double or twin bed configuration
- Full board, on-board dining
- Spacious sun deck with spa pool
- 8 all-terrain bicycles
- Wifi (limited in some places)
- Air-conditioned minibuses for transfers and excursions
Hotel Barge Renaissance: Cruise Highlights
- Excursion to the Château de Fontainebleau
- Special visit to the privately-owned Château de la Bussière
- Historic 7-lock flight at Rogny-Les-Sept-Ecluses
- Visit to Château de Sully-sur-Loire, an historic moated fortress
- Cruise across Gustave Eiffel’s aqueduct over the River Loire at Briare
- Delicious wine tasting in Sancerre
- Explore the town of Gien, home of Faience pottery
- Michelin-starred dinner ashore
- Excellent tow-path for walking and cycling and Biking Plus option available
Transfers to and from the Hotel Westminster, Paris, all meals and drinks on board, excursion fees and associated transport
Not included: Air fares to and within France; travel, medical and cancellation insurance; crew gratuities (5-10% suggested)
Hotel Barge Renaissance: Guest Comments
We holiday in Europe each year and this trip has been one of the best – with a sensational start aboard Renaissance. To claim that our six days on board far exceeded our expectations is a massive understatement. Each of the eight of us enjoyed the experience immensely, from the moment we met at the Westminster, until safely deposited at Gare de Lyon.
The crew were fresh and everything we could have hoped for – professional, knowledgeable, warm – and fun! (They beat us at Petane/Bocce – we introduced them to a few ‘Australianisms’!)
Rob W, May 2017
Hotel Barge Renaissance: Classic Cruise in the Upper Loire
Chatillon-sur-Loire to Montargis, Canal de Briare
Sunday, Day 1 Châtillon-sur-Loire to Briare Meet at the Hotel Westminster for transfer to the Renaissance and a Champagne welcome. A short evening cruise to Briare, crossing Gustave Eiffel’s magical aqueduct over the River Loire with time perhaps for a walk or cycle ride before dinner on board.
Monday, Day 2 Briare to La Gazonne
Morning visit to a renowned winery in Sancerre, such as Domaine Henry Bourgeois, in Chavignol for a tour and private tasting. After lunch, an afternoon cruise to La Gazonne, a beautiful mooring surrounded by lakes and ponds that provide water for the workings of the Canal de Briare. Dinner on board.
Tuesday, Day 3 La Gazonne to Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses
A morning cruise with plenty of opportunities for walking or cycling along the towpath, to our mooring at Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses near its 350-year-old 7 lock-flight. After lunch on board, a visit to the privately-owned Château de La Bussière, or ‘fishermen’s castle’. Dinner on board.
Wednesday, Day 4 Rogny-les-Sept-Ecluses to Montbouy
Visit to Gien, home of the Faience pottery, renowned for its beautifully decorated and vibrant dinnerware and time to explore the bustling market. After lunch back on board, a relaxing afternoon cruise to the charming village of Montbouy. Dinner ashore at the Michelin-starred Auberge des Templiers in Les Bezards.
Thursday, Day 5 Montbouy to Montcresson
A gentle cruise to Montcresson, lunch on board and visit Château Sully-sur-Loire in the afternoon. The castle originally belonged to Georges de la Trémoïlle, who imprisoned Joan of Arc here, and in the 18th century, Voltaire, exiled from Paris, also spent time at the château. Dinner on board.
Friday, Day 6 Montcresson to Montargis
A morning cruise to Montargis, France’s little Venice, cross-crossed with medieval watercourses on their way to join France’s oldest canal. In the afternoon a visit to the splendid Château de Fontainebleau, a national museum and UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is the only royal and imperial château to have been continuously inhabited for seven centuries – to walk through this palace is to walk through the history of France. Captain’s Farewell Dinner on board.
Saturday, Day 7 Montargis
After breakfast, transfer to the Hotel Westminster in Paris.
This is a sample itinerary and is subject to change. On alternate weeks the cruise will be in the reverse direction.
Hotel Barge Renaissance cruises through the ‘Gatinais’ of North Burgundy
Barge Cruising – Loing Valley, Briare and Loire
Canal de Loing – Canal de Briare – Canal Loire Lateral
South of Paris, where the western part of Burgundy blurs prettily with the Loire Valley, a cruise along the Canal de Loing, the Canal de Briare and the Canal Loire Lateral reveals a number of hidden treasures in a landscape that inspired the painter Alfred Sisley. He memorably captured numerous aspects of the ancient town of Moret-sur-Loing, which has associations not just with Thomas à Becket, but with the Three Musketeers as well.
There are engineering feats to marvel at along the way– when the elegant aqueduct at Briare was constructed in the 1890s to cross the wide span of the River Loire, at 662 metres it was the longest in the world, while at Rogny you can see a flight of seven locks – the fact that they are no longer in use gives them an atmospheric quality full of echoes of the past, but also provides the chance to take in the detail of their construction
The wooded forests of the region attracted royal hunting parties from as early as the 12th century and the Palace of Fontainebleau originally served as a hunting lodge. Its medieval fortifications were given a glorious renaissance makeover in the 16th century and of all royal palaces it is the only one to have been continuously inhabited for seven centuries. It was where Napoleon abdicated from the throne before he was exiled to Elbe. Thousand year old castles are plentiful – Saint Fargeau and Sully-sur-Loire boast breathtaking examples. Equally charming is the ancient town of Montargis, which with its network of narrow canals and bridges invites comparisons to Venice.
Hotel barges normally collect and return guests to a pre-agreed Paris hotel. The primary French international airport is at Paris-Charles de Gaulle. There are also TGV express train stations at Sens, Migennes, Montbard and Tours; and many other towns in the region have railway connections.
– [below] In the region: Rogny, Briare, Moret-sur-Loing (Alfred Sisley), Montargis, Fontainebleau, Fargeau, Sully –
Hotel Barge Renaissance: Details and Facilities
- Dimensions: 128ft (39m) x 17ft 6″ (5.3m)
- Two suites are approx 265 sq ft; two suites are approx 235 sq ft, including 60 sq ft ensuite bathrooms
- All suites can have king-size double or single bed configurations
- All cabins are individually air conditioned and centrally heated
- Professional English-speaking crew of 5 – captain/pilot, tour guide/ deckhand, chef, housekeeper, hostess.
Other items on board:
- 8 person spa pool
- 8 bicycles
- A small library of books and maps
- A collection of board games
- Fishing rods
- Nordic walking sticks
- Bose Hi-fi system with an iPod docking station and radio. There is a selection of CDs on board and guests are welcome to bring their own from home.
- Guest iPods can be connected to the Hi-Fi system
Hotel Barge Renaissance: Cuisine
All meals on board are freshly prepared by your chef and most meals are a set-menu (there is no choice available). However, vegetarian, pescatarian and vegan dishes, and non-allergenic dishes, can be served given at least 8 weeks notice prior to your departure date.
Breakfast: wholesome and balanced variety of breakfast foods, along with fresh breads & pastries, freshly-squeezed orange juice and hot beverages.
Lunch: regional specialities, accompanied by a selection of quality wines.
Dinner: a candlelit four-course gourmet experience.
Captain’s farewell dinner is held on the last night. Guests may choose to dress slightly formal.
Your personal chef creates exciting menus, using the freshest locally grown produce, matched perfectly with a carefully chosen wine. You’ll be delighted by the range of delicious dishes served by candlelight, either in the saloon or under the stars.
Filet Mignon de Charolais; Medallion d’Agneau Farci; Filet de Sole Chablisienne; Canard au Petits Navets
Domaine Henri Bourgeois, Sancerre; Domaine Billaud Simon, Chablis Premier Cru; Domaine Bouchard Père et Fils, Meursault; Domaine Changarnier, Monthelie; Domaine Camus, Charmes Chambertin Grand Cru
Aisy Cendré; Bouton de Culotte; Epoisses; Ami du Chambertin
Charter and Cabin bookings
Sunday to Saturday
Value rate weeks:
April 8, 15, 22
July 22, 29
August 5, 12, 19
October 7, 14, 21
6 guest charter: 47,500 USD / 31,500 GBP / 39,600 EUR
7 guest charter: 49,000 USD / 32,500 GBP / 40,800 EUR
8 guest charter: 50,500 USD / 33,500 GBP / 42,000 EUR
Per Cabin bookings
Double Cabin: 6,750 USD / 4,490 GBP / 5,690 EUR per person
Single Occupancy Supplement: 2,450 USD / 1,650 GBP / 2,050 EUR
Regular rate weeks:
May 6, 13, 20, 27
June 3, 10, 17, 24
July 1, 8, 15
September 2, 9, 16, 23, 30
6 guest charter: 54,000 USD / 36,500 GBP / 45,500 EUR
7 guest charter: 56,200 USD / 37,700 GBP / 47,000 EUR
8 guest charter: 58,400 USD / 38,900 GBP / 48,500 EUR
Per Cabin bookings
Double Cabin: 7,850 USD / 5,250 GBP / 6,550 EUR per person
Single Occupancy Supplement: 2,850 USD / 1,900 GBP / 2,350 EUR
All rates and prices will be confirmed at time of booking. Special Offers are available from time to time – contact us
We feature information about 50 wonderful hotel barges, of various sizes and price/style levels, more than 100 individual cruises to choose from every week of the season, in 8 regions across France. Some book flexibly by the cabin, others exclusively charter the entire hotel barge. Quite a choice!
Every one of our hotel barge information pages has been carefully crafted and written by us, from our own unique first hand-hand experience – but we also understand that there’s nothing like speaking to a friendly expert to help see the wood for the trees and make the best possible decision about the vacation cruise of a lifetime.
So please, send us a Booking Enquiry form (click on the red tab above) or just pick up the phone and give us a call.
We love France, we love the rivers and canals of France, we love hotel barging – and we love talking about all three!
+33 609 740 064 -or- +44 7590 287 178
We have been cruising and exploring France
aboard our own river boat since 2003.
– we also have expert colleagues in North America and Australia –