The abbaye is located at the southern end of the Department of Vendée in the Pays de la Loire Region.
The Abbaye was founded in 1068. Gaining the statue of the Royal Abbaye by the Queen of France, Eleanor of Aquitaine.
Construction of the church commenced at the end of the 11th century. Various parts were rebuilt during the 12th and 13th centuries. The flying buttresses were added in the 17th century to provided needed support.
The cloisters, dating from the 12th century, banned women and children.
The abbaye was sometimes called Eleanor's Abbey as Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine was born in Nieul in 1122.
The cloisters are one of the few in Western France to remain intact.
Eleanor of Aquitaine's tomb of her mother is in the Chapterhouse. Autise became a royal abbaye in 1151 when Louise VII took St. Vincent's Nieul under his protection.
Fine Chapterhouse here, and this is where the Abbot would take his seat in the middle and the Canons would take their seats which were stone benches. They would hear a reading of the Rule. The Abbot would announce the services for the following day and the tasks for the current day could be distributed. Once a week the meeting would end with a confession of Faults Against the Rule.
Only the outer wall of the Refectory, the dinning hall, remains.
The Abbot and the Canons received their income from the land they held in common over which they held feudal rights. For example, the people of Nieul were obliged to cook their break in the cannon's oven, and pay a fee for doing so.