My husband and I stayed at Bonne Terre while we were on our honeymoon, and we could not have chosen a more perfect place. The artistic and homey cottage has such a vital energy to it, no doubt in large part because of the creative energy that radiates from Jen herself. Every detail is considered, from the thoughtfully stocked kitchen to the record collection featuring local musicians to the welcome basket left for us upon arrival. As environmental professionals, we appreciated the respect Jen clearly has for the earth and enjoyed spending afternoons watching and interacting with the horses, goats and chickens on the farm. Bonne Terre was the perfect home base for exploring the region, which is rich with music and Southern culture. It is truly a magical place, and we hope to return!
While in Louisiana researching a novel-in-progress, I was lucky enough to enjoy the peace, comfort, and charm of Bonne Terre Cottage for three weeks. The soulful wood cottage, with its soaring ceiling, wide porches, and sleeping loft, perfectly fit my desire for a peaceful retreat in nature balanced with a vibrant nearby social scene that included Cafe Des Ami and its Zydeco breakfasts Saturday mornings. (Can you say Fun?) Folks, the place is magical: fireflies sparkling in tree tops, cicadas signaling evening, and in the morning, the red streak of cardinals’ flight across a pond to a wall of roses, just to give a hint of what you can expect.
The host offers the right mix of southern hospitality and respectful privacy. For breakfast I ate eggs fresh from the owners’ hens, and dinners became feasts enhanced with herbs and veggies picked from the garden that day. Each evening, I looked forward to sitting on the wide porch writing in my notebooks and watching my hosts feed their horses and pygmy goats adjacent to my fenced yard. One evening, I went along to feed the cow, Matilda. I volunteered to feed the goldfish in a small pond with a fountain outside my door. A lovely five-acre pond is at the end of the road, and I walked there after dinner to watch the turtles, ducks, and pet my favorite neighborhood dog, Jade.
As for the cottage itself, the photos do a great job of showing you its sweet, lovingly built space. The dressing room and its big mirror, book shelves, dresser and wardrobe are a bonus. I made some wonderful meals in the kitchen, got some of my best rest in the cozy nest-like bedroom, and practiced my zydeco dance moves in the livingroom. Writing this review makes me feel “homesick” for a place (and its people!) that held me with grace as I ventured into completely new territory, arriving alone and having never before visited Louisiana. If you, too, are lucky enough to stay at Bonne Terre Cottage, please let me know the highlights of your stay in this special place. I do plan to return, possibly this fall.
Bonne Terre is an awesome destination. It is an excellent central location for day trips in the surrounding area. Additionally, the cottage itself contains a vast and diverse blend of resources to help a traveler become intimately acquainted with the area (history, natural history, music, arts, food). The cottage host was also very open to assist with any questions or directions that we needed.
I have stayed at many cottages over the past twenty years, both in the U.S. and in Europe, and Bonne Terre is the cleanest cottage I have ever stayed in. The owners take exceptional care of this cottage.
I was happy that the cottage was equipped with exclusively environmentally friendly cleaning products and laundry detergents. Also, as advertised, there was no sign of pets or smoking in the cottage (excellent for those with allergies).
The location is very picturesque, with lots of wildlife. Ideal for birdwatching.
I highly recommend choosing to stay in this clean and well-maintained cottage in the country. It truly is an artist’s retreat…so many unique collectibles and artistic touches inside and out. My 1 week stay was quiet, comfy, and cozy. Every aspect of what a guest would need or want was well thought out and provided. Owners were respectful of my privacy yet helpful with their delightful southern hospitality to ensure my needs were being met. I felt like I was at my own retreat spa. What a gift it was to wake up to country views…horses cantering around the pond, goats playing together like children, vegetable gardens beautifully designed and maintained, again with many artistic touches. That’s where I first learned about bottle trees! I can’t wait to return for another stay.