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rules for disabled gites?

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Hi there,

I was wondering if any of you have any experience doing up the Gite with disabled people in mind?  Other than the obvious (3ft doors exterior/interiour, turning circle for wheel chair in bathroom, sunk shower, seat for washing, hand rails etc).....is there anything else I have missed out on?  Someone said something about the hight of the bed.....has anybody got any expreience with this?  I am at the moment at the stage of demolishing the walls and re-building the roof, if there is anything extra to be done I'd love to know about it now so I can add it to the plans.

Thanks a lot.


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I've had a chat with one or two people about this.  One suggestion is that "Gite de France" may have pre-set standards anyway, which would allow your gite to be classed as disabled friendly.

The authorities on this subject here are the Ergotherapists (equivalent of Occupational Therapists in the UK.)  If you have a local rehab' centre or large hospital, you might think about approaching them.  It is they who look over private houses and recommend any special adaptation which may be necessary before patients are allowed to go home.

On a personal level, a couple of things.  I cooked in a "disabled" kitchen the other day.  A couple of things strike you : You need to be able to get a wheelchair underneath hobs/sinks etc; the cupboards mustn't be out of reach to wheelchair users.  Also, you might think about other disabilities - it's not just wheelchair users who are classed as handicapped.  Anything you can do to help deaf and/or blind or vision impaired visitors would go down well also, I am sure.

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Gîtes de France does not have its own rules but it supports the Ministry of Tourism « Tourisme et Handicap »  initiative. 



 Comment obtenir le label ?

Le label est délivré suivant une procédure nationale, dont l'Association "Tourisme

et Handicaps" assure la cohérence, dans le cadre de la convention de gestion du

dispositif, signée avec le secrétariat d'État chargé de la Consommation et du


Pour être labellisé, le site doit  répondre à un cahier des charges et le gestionnaire

s'engage de façon pérenne à garantir des prestations adaptées et un accueil de


 Où s'adresser ?

Dans chaque région, le délégué régional au Tourisme (DRT) vous informe et peut vous accompagner dans votre démarche pour rendre

accessible votre structure. 



Les professionnels qui souhaitent en savoir plus peuvent s’adresser :

- à la direction du Tourisme au 01 70 39 93 00 ou par courriel

- à l’association Tourisme & Handicaps 01 44 11 10 41 ou par courriel 

- à la délégation régionale au Tourisme de leur région par courriel

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I am planning

Integral garage (Automatic door)  with sufficient room to exit vehicle and enter building

level access throughout inc shower tray

warm air dryer in shower area

Disabled friendly toilet area inc turnaround space

all sockets and heater controls at a metre from floor level

Windows with remote winders

worksurfaces allowing wheelchairs beneath

Visual as well as audible alert for smoke detectors

Touch lamps

Small conservatory and patio

Not officially disabled friendly but able to cope as needs be



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Thanks for the update guys.  I'm planning:-

3ft doors

disabled toilet

italian sunken shower

low light switches

touch lamps

outside area with lean-to and decking.

All plastic doors will have wheelchair access metal strips instead of a subcill. 

I am not doing much to the kitchen, other people need to use the area, and I am assuming that whoever comes to stay here has someone to help them with food, not only that I am going to include 3 meals a day, easier on everybody.

Security-wise, I'm fitting smoke/CO2 detectors.  3 types of extinguishers.  Vents on all plastic windows.  In the 1st floor bedrooms (not disabled!) I have put top openers and safety catches in order to aid escape in the case of fire below.

I asked gite de france, they said they've sent the guidelines to me, but that was Monday, still not had them.  If they do not exsist, that must be why. 

A personal note, I'm having the windows shipped over from the UK, I used my brother who owns a glazing business in the UK to buy the windows (without glass) over there, tilt and turn, German locking system etc.  Shipping them from the UK to here will only cost £190-220....will get the glass here and fit them myself.  Save a bundle.  I love to have brown-on-white Upvc windows, you just can't get them here.  Also, had a price for the whole house, jeez!  They wanted 9,800 euro, I'm going to pay even with shipping 1/4 of this!  I'm sure being foreign makes all the difference to pricing for a job! [Www]

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I wish you every success with your project...when you are finished  contact (google ) Disabled Holiday Directory they will be pleased to know you have a place in France and  suitable for their needs .... I have no connection ,but know people go to them for information on suitable places to stay ...

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