Cognac is a 19,500 inhabitant town of the Charente department – Poitou-Charentes region, crossed by the Charente River. The town is famous worldwide thanks to its brandy of the same name. 95% of the Cognac production is exported. Thus, the alcoholic drink made the town a thriving area in terms of economy, architecture and everyday life. But Cognac is also the native town of King François 1 and a beautiful town where you can admire the old city, narrow alleys and old houses whose stones are most of the time covered with a black velvet, result of the Torula Compniacencis (a microscopic fungus which lives on alcohol steams).
Cognac houses many religious monuments, museums, festivals and parks, which tourists love visiting. Saint-Léger church, Saint-Léger priory church, Saint-Martin church and Récollets convent are beautiful religious monuments dating from the 11th and 12th centuries. The Art and History Museum was built in 1838. It displays traditional items and furniture reflecting wine-grower family life, typical costumes (headpieces), and archeological, faience and ceramic items. The most touristy museum is probably the Cognac Art Museum. It tells the story of Cognac’s making as well as industrial, economic and social history of the town.
Walk along Cognac’s main streets: in the Rue Grande, which was the main street from the Middle Ages to the 19th century, you can admire half-timbered houses. The so-called Maison de la Lieutenance holding a 15th century frame is one example amongst others. Saulnier Street, a sloping street, is also worth a look. You will see there beautiful town houses. Finally, Cognac’s town hall is located in the heart of a park. It is a former town house owned by a merchant of the 19t century. You can also gaze at the Dame Jeanne barge, built in honour of workers and boats which favoured the town’s growing.
Cognac honours its king memory throughout its park, castle and square which are dedicated to him. The main park in the town offers great areas to have a break or a picnic. To the first one was given the name of the king native from Cognac. King François 1 park is located near the Charente River. According to a legend, the future King of France was born near an oak tree, to which was given the name of François 1. In 1819, the town bought the park to the State. A King François 1 statute may be seen in François 1 square. Finally, Cognac’s castle was the home of the king.
As regards festivals, stare at the traditional festival, Cognac Blues Passions, Floralies, Music Festival and street performances. They take place all year long in Cognac and are very different the one from the others. No time for boredom in Cognac!
Property prices in Cognac dropped slightly in May 2008 and fluctuate from this time. In 2009, the average property price is about €1,497/square metre. Considering the national average of €3,197/square metre, the town is a cheap area - half less expensive than many other towns. Prices for a house are lower than those for an apartment: €1,490/square metre against €1,540/square metre. Finally, over 50% of Cognac’s residents are tenants. Thus, the town is a good market if you are looking for an investment. It offers great rental opportunities and you can pitch on a buy-to-let, which should be fast profitable to you.
To get updated info about the property prices in Charente, please browse our French Property Market Reports published in the News Section every month.
Any type of property may be found in Cognac: Charentaise houses, manor houses, farmhouses, cottages, chateaux, detached houses. Let’s focus on the most widespread houses that you can see there.
Click here for more info about the Architecture in Poitou Charentes.
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