Cognac Property Insight

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!

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Cognac Immobilier & Property Market Trends

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.

Click here to have an overview of Poitou Charentes Property Prices.

5 Reasons to Buy a Property in Cognac

  • Gastronomy: Cognac’s good food will satisfy anyone’s palate. Taste the typical dish called petits gris à la charentaise, which is made of snails, garlic, parsley and shallot. Others, as famous as the first are to be discovered: oysters with a shallot and vinegar sauce, éclade de moules (mussels), goat cheese, jonchée cheese, millas (a sort of pie) and Cognac soufflé. To be served with your meal: Pineau des Charentes or Cognac of course!
  • Economy: there is more to the town of Cognac than its wonderful brandy. Out of 12,000 jobs in the private sector, only 2,500 are linked to the famous liqueur. Indeed, an important industry developed around the Cognac: glass industry, cooperage, printing and even agricultural material. The town houses companies working in exotic dishes, aviation industry, building materials, canoe-kayak building… thus, Cognac holds a know-how in many different sectors as well as in export.
  • Transport links: Transcom is the local bus network traveling all over the town each day except on Sunday and days-off. By road, Cognac is 30km from Paris - Bordeaux motorway and therefore close to Bordeaux-Mérignac airport. This airport flies each day towards national and international destinations such as the UK, the USA and Canada. Angouleme-Cognac airport flies to London Stansted. By train, the high speed train connects Cognac with Paris in three hours and regional trains lead to Angouleme, Saintes, Royan, Rochefort and La Rochelle.
  • Wine and alcoholic drinks: Cognac is renowned worldwide for its brandy, which has the same name of the town. A great part of the production is exported which explains its fame. 39% of the production is exported in the USA as well as in Europe, and 20% is dedicated to the Far East market (Japan and China mainly).
  • Rental opportunities: Cognac is a touristy destination in the centre west of France. Located in the Poitou Charentes region, it benefits from the great weather - the region is the second sunniest region of France – and the coastal areas. Thus, this is a good location for a let investment. Moreover, as exposed previously, over the half of the population rent a property. Cognac really has good rental opportunities and return on investment.

Property Styles and Architecture in Cognac

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.

  • Charentaise houses: it is the typical property of Poitou Charentes. They are easily recognizable thanks to their shape. Indeed, they are always rectangular with symmetric architecture. In each side of the entrance door, there is the same number of windows. Outside, they hold a courtyard, outbuildings and a piece of land. The roof is traditionally made of tiles. Inside, beams and stones may be exposed, giving more charm to the house.
  • Manor houses: they are massive and luxury properties. Some of them have the Charentaise houses features i.e rectangular and symmetric shape. They hold all the comfort needed: very large land, a courtyard, outbuildings, pool, garage, attic… They are a good property to settle a guest house – several bedrooms for guests, large land for activities and outbuildings for tranquility.
  • Farmhouses: originally the house of farmers, they were built accordingly i.e. with the space needed to live and work. Thus, they have many outbuildings such as barns, stables or cottages and large land. They can be converted into Bed & Breakfast: the numerous bedrooms may be dedicated to guests and the outbuildings allow the owner to have a certain tranquility.

Click here for more info about the Architecture in Poitou Charentes.

Take a closer look at the Charente property market:
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