The Legend

Long ago, over a thousand years if one is to judge by the age of some of the olive trees on the property, man elected to live in a superb valley tucked away in the Saint Baume range of hills. It was already a blessed place, with flowing water all year round: a miracle on its own in the somewhat arid landscape of Provence. The countryside was beautiful, and there was plenty of sun and water. Everything was set for Souviou to flourish…

The Provençal vegetation grew freely in all forms: pine and oak forests, strawberry trees, broom, juniper, laburnum, heather and wild iris. Among these grew fragrant wild herbs like thyme, rosemary, savory, marjoram, and especially sage, which gave birth to ther name of the valley. In the Provençal language, the word for sage is soouvi. Legend has it that on the Holy Family’s flight, they passed safely through this region.

15th cetury manuscripts tell of local families building stone terraces on the land and cutivating crops so bountiful that only salt had to be purchased in town. The olive oil was of such fine quality that it attracted the most demanding customers of Marseille.

Nature quickly reclaims what human beings neglect. For many years the Domaine fell into abandon. The gardens, the wildlife, the rolling hills that brought joy and abundance never left, but it was hidden from the world without a caring touch. The right vision can change all that… Today the current owner, Roger Jaar, has restored Souviou to its historical glory making it possible to share a thousand years of Provence with all.


 The 15th century country house


 Thousand year-old olive trees millennia on terraces   


Dry stone well

Four à Cade

Cade oven