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Cathar Castles
Château La Commanderie
Restored Medieval Cathar Château in France

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Château La Commanderie


This is a rare castle - a genuine Cathar Chteau that is still inhabited. It was built by Guilhem de Planh (Guilhaume de Plaigne) a key figure in the events at Avignonet in 1242 and the tragedy of Montsgur 1244.

The Chateau was sold the Knights of Malta (The Knights Hospitaller or Knights of St-John) in the seventeenth century.

It has been completely refurbished as a handsome private residence set in its own grounds and available for exclusive hire. It is available for weddings and other private functions, and for business conferences.

It is located in the heart of Cathar Country in the Aude department in the Languedoc, between Carcassonne and Toulouse.

See separate sections below on:

Address / Maps / Location



Private Functions




Château La Commanderie
11420 Plaigne

Château La Commanderie
11420 Plaigne

Rebecca Gregory
Telephone from the UK: 00 33 6 40 60 50 74
Telephone from the US: 010 33 6 40 60 50 74
Telephone from France: 06 40 60 50 74
Telephone from other countries: +33 (0)6 40 60 50 74

Fax: 06 40 60 50 74



Google Maps


Small scale map showing the location of
Château La Commanderie

Google map showing the location of
Château La Commanderie

Large scale map showing
Château La Commanderie

Location of the Chteau La Commanderie


La Commanderie is in the Heart of the Cathar country in the Aude, ideally located between the Pyrenees and Mediterranean sea. It is a paradise for lovers of hiking, horse-riding, fishing, hunting, alpine and cross-country-skying.

History lovers will find this region littered with Romanesque churches.

Close to the medieval fortified town of Mirepoix and to Castelnaudary, with its world famous cassoulet, you can also discover the ruins of other Cathar castles, including Montsegur.

Just 40 minutes from La Commanderie are the medieval City of Carcassonne (a world heritage site), the chateau of Foix an the 'pink city' of Toulouse, with many cultural and tourist attractions.

Great for kids : the Forge of Pyrenees, a Prehistoric Park, Space city and many other fun and sporty activities.

There are local delights from the market of Mirepoix or Castelnaudary and the home-made foie-gras made by local producers.


Getting to the Chteau La Commanderie

La Commanderie is 45 minutes from the international airports of Toulouse and Carcassonne.

From Toulouse :

  • A66 motorway, direction Andorra
  • Exit Mazres
  • Go to Belpech
  • In Belpech, direction Carcassonne-Plaigne for 6 Km.

1h30 from Andorra and Spain; 1h from the Mediterranean sea.






History of the Chteau La Commanderie


La Commanderie was built in the 12th century by Guillaume de Plaigne, a Cathar Lord, who took an active role in the massacre of Avignonet and afterwards joined the besieged stronghold as a member of the garrison, along with his brother, at the famous siege of Montsgur.

In the 16th century, Barthelemy de Plaigne extended the chteau by creating the Salle des Chevaliers. (At around the same time another branch of the de Plaigne family was building the Chteau de St Ferriol)

Grand Master and senior knights Hospitaller<br>
                      in the 14th centuryBarthelemy de Plaigne's daughter, Anne de Plaigne, married the Count de Pibrac in 1642, and sold Plaigne to Franois-Paul de Bon-Masss-Cazaux, head of the order of St John in Toulouse, who, in 1685, established this domain as a Commanderie of the Knights of Malta. It remained in their ownership until the French Revolution.

In the 19th century, the chateau belonged to Mr de Nicol, who modernised the building, and it remained in this family for a century, the last descent being Vilolette de Ferluc.

La Commanderie was bought in 1973 by Marie-France Gregory, the mother of the present owner. It has been completely restored and furnished in period style by this family of artists and art lovers. Rebecca Gregory will be happy to give you a private tour of her sculpture studio :


The Cross of the Order of St John



The present castle is built around the original medieval keep-castle, incorporated into the later structure, but identifiable by the thick walls three of which are now interior walls.

The original castle was boated.


Weddings and Private Functions at the Chteau La Commanderie


This is a family chateau surrounded by extensive grounds, an ideal place to host your wedding or anniversary.

You can make yourself at home in the entire property and hold your event in the Salle Des Chevaliers (Knights' Hall) or in the gardens and accommodate your guests on site. That way you can continue the happy event into the next day.

You can rent this light and cheery family house for your gatherings and friends' reunions in summer or winter, for your holidays, or simply for a weekend.

You can make yourself at home in the entire property without the burden of worrying about the upkeep.

There are tables and chairs for up to 150 people.






Accommodation at the Chteau La Commanderie


Cocktail room : 100m, summer room and hall open on the terrace and the garden

Banquet room : noble stage : 140 m including the Salle Des Chevalier (85 m)

Grounds 4 hectares with pool

Sleeps 18 in 8 double bedrooms

Choice of caterer or other local supplier







You can join small exclusive guided tours of Cathar Castles
led by an English speaking expert on the Cathars
who lives in the Languedoc
(author of

Selected Cathar Castles. Accommodation provided. Transport Provided.

Cathar Origins, History, Beliefs.
The Crusade, The Inquisition, and Consequences

Visit the Cathar Tours Website for more information


Photographs of the Chteau La Commanderie




















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