Managing a remote house is not easy. You have bills coming in at your foreign address as well as in your mailbox at home. All of them are in French which makes it even harder to handle. Apart from that, the system is totally different. Tax for this, tax for that, national tax, local tax. And so on and so forth.
To get an idea… France does have much the same taxes as other countries. However, there are three main differences between France and many other countries: Continue reading
Do you recognize this? You did something that became more successful than you ever imagined? Supergîtes is just that. We’re open, booked, and everybody is happy (well, almost everybody). We’re even seriously thinking of starting a second Supergîte.
To celebrate and thank our friends, fans and renters we are working on some extra benefits. With a subscription to our Supergîtes Updates you unlock these twice a year. Even though our list is over 270 people long, there’s still a reason why we call these Updates ‘Just for Friends‘.
Become a ‘Friend‘. Join our mailing list today …
Sign up for our Updates
Do you recognize this problem? You got a beautiful garden but there’s this one corner that is always a bit of a mess. It’s just too rocky, too weedy or too damp. As a good gardener you’re just about able to hide it behind the roses or some bush. But it’s there to irritate you every time you take that better look in your green paradise.
We have this problem too. It’s 4,000 m2 🙂
We own this enormous field. Walk out of the kitchen, through the orchard and pass through the flower garden, climb the dyke and there it is… one acre of weed. *Gosh* what to do with it? We cut it the first summer, tried to poison it the second but this year we lost the energy to even look at it until now. We have the perfect solution: Let’s Rent a Goat. This is the official call to our fellow denizen:
Chers amis de Tourteron,
Nous avons 4,000 mètre carré qui est inutilisé. Il est plein de mauvaises herbes.Connaissez-vous quelqu’un qui a une chèvre qui a besoin de plus d’espace?Nous aimerions apporter notre territoire de placer la chèvre. Elle peut mangertoutes les mauvaises herbes gratuitement.
Marco et Hugo
Check out our official website at supergites.nl.
A gîte is a French holiday home that is available for rent. Gîtes are usually fully furnished and equipped for self-catering. Many owners choose to handle their own rentals, and you can find these by searching online on the multitude of listing sites or by checking with the local tourist information office. [wikipedia]
A gîte is generally an old farmworkers’ cottage or converted outbuilding. This type of holiday accommodation is sometimes regarded as ‘basic’ in terms of facilities; however, some gîtes will have excellent facilities. Now that called a super gîte.
This blog tells the story behind the first Supergîte; on how we got there and how we’re doing today. Happy reading.
Filed under Renting, Tourism
A winter landscape is beautiful. White slopes with bare trees scattered around like chocolate icing. The picture looks completely like a perfect Christmas card. But being is this picture is less romantic. It’s cold. It’s slippery. It’s dangerous. Renters ask us if they need snow chains (sneeuwkettingen) in the French Ardennes. Hell yeah!
With snow the Belgian and French roads are not clean. Most of the snow is frozen to the surface and the tracks are reduced to one single lane no matter how many there are underneath the 5 centimeters of thick and slippery grey mass. Driving the roads in these conditions is not much fun. And climbing the slopes that look so beautiful on the picture is all of a sudden a dangerous mission.
This situation is not just the case with the cute little white roads on the map or the so-called D roads. Even the European highway E411 between Brussels and Luxembourg turns into an 180km long ice skating track. All along the road you see the poor victims of this winter horror. Abandoned trucks and cars, slid from the road.
Sliding at high speed is just stupid. Sliding off the road at slow speed is just unnecessary. Snow tires are great when the roads are wet and snowy. Snow chains are the only thing that gets you to the bakery on a winter day in the Ardennes. Be prepared.
Lavital, the luxury brand of our box spring beds, selected the water mill as the décor for this years collection of promotional pictures. Last weekend they organized their photo shoot. We arrived one day later to find a complete make over of the mill. Everything was turned upside down but the result was astonishing.
It’s just amazing what a good stylist can do. The new pictures for the 2010/2011 brochure had to match the colours of the new Lavital ‘a deeper luxury’ campaign. The selection of natural materials, bed covers, side tables and ceramic cups that Caroline Pluym made, added the right atmosphere to the house and beds. It just lifted the complete set to a whole new international level. In all the pictures the Lavital beds look like a dream come true with a WOW factor that just pushes your eagerness.
And it’s not just the styling that did the job. Marc Dorleijn, the photographer has also the right eye to capture the space and the perfect patience to wait for that natural light. We knew the mill has interesting chances of light. The sun really turns from early morning sparkles on one side to a full blast on the other side of the mill. Till now we’ve not seen anybody being able to catch that in a picture. All the pictures are so vividly breathing that sun. The mill looks ten times as beautiful as the real deal.
I hope to life up those new expectations of the Supergites … I trust the facts: “seeing is believing” 🙂
home made travel guide
You can always escape the comfort of the water mill and take a tour. To help decide what to do i wrote this small and very personal travel guide. There’s a printed version at the location to take with you on your journey. Here you will have to coop with the abstract feeling of turning virtual pages.
Sometimes you need to be naughty to get somewhere. This time I invited Chef de Cuisine Brice BUFFET of Les Échevins to come to the water mill. I’ve written about the restaurant earlier since it’s by far the best place to go for dinner around Tourteron. But to be honest: I didn’t make that initial call. It was my dear French friend Corinne who has absolute joy in helping me out in French. As you might guess Fr <> Fr works twice as fast.
The chef came with his wife and son to talk about catering at Supergîtes. We showed the family around and talked about the project and what we are looking for. Brice was very enthusiastic. Without hesitation he told us to be honored to serve his Haute Cuisine at the mill. We were astonished. To say the least.
We asked him to send a sous-chef or some young intern cook to prepare the food. Continue reading
Filed under All, Food, Renting
At our sweet 5,700m2 terrain we’ve worked hard to create this little Garden of Eden as we think that a Supergîte should not only be a great indoor experience but provide a great outdoor experience as well.
No pools or tennis court but a great garden to wonder and be wondered by the combination of rare flowers and ordinary herbs. All delicately chosen by Hendrik Dekker, our landscape architect and flower connoisseur.
This weekend we came back for our first check up. After two weeks of renting you need to walk by and see if everything is still there in good shape. At the house it was all OK apart from a smashed light and two broken cups. Disregarded the fact that all our beer was gone without a note by whom, everything was fine.
The big surprise came in the garden where a sweet fairy visitor came by and seeded an extra bed of sunflowers … hehehe – SUPER! They must have felt so at home! 🙂
Le début des locataires .. finally .. Judgement day was there. The first renters have finished the first holiday in the very first Supergites. Now we’re left with so many questions. What did they do? How do they think about the mill? Where did they go shopping? Did they sleep well?
I’ve send the registered renter a small questionnaire to gather some information. He replied the same day with some minor comments we agree upon immediately. They LOVED the mill and made some great work. OMG .. we cannot explain how relieved we are. To thank us they’ve send us some small sketches of the mill and Tourteron 🙂