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” 🙂
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
We thought it was a nice gesture to thank our constructor Stéphane with a picture book. With this book, showing what has been done to create this superb gîte, he can present his first big job as a constructor to potential clients. It’s a simple story line of pictures in chronological order. You can look into it at ISSUU where we’ve published the digital version.
Filed under All, Renovation
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 🙂
In the final week of working hard to get things right (or just done), at a certain point you just have to make decisions. Nasty ones. You have to choose between the must-have and nice-to-have. And that’s not an easy job. One says he really thinks curtains are essential, the other claims to die without TV. Do we really need that door between the two basements? or do we put our energy in finding the right furniture? It’s constantly putting pressure on the working relationship because you’re just so tired you really don’t care what the other says or even about the arguments. All space evaporated. But what to do … you have to go on. Continue reading
“Zimmer Frei?”…not anymore! We’ve just reached our first milestone with the Water Mill of Tourteron: Both summer months, July and August, are almost fully booked! There’s only one week left available in July. We’re super happy to see the first reservations coming in so quickly. All people who’ll fill the mill with joy and happiness. We so much looking forward to hear their stories and that they’ll really feel at home.
If you’re still doubting .. make a choice @supergites: it’s now or 2011 🙂
Time to Relax at a Supergite
You think the banking system is the same all over the world. OK, maybe not so the same in India or Uganda but in Europe all the banks use the same method to transfer money from one account to the other. Right? We discovered that’s not the case.
We started to become superstitious about the French banking system when we went shopping on a Saturday at a large Carrefour. In our lane right in front of us a family had piled up their caddie (shopping cart) and when the sweet caissière finally bleeped all 241 items, they grabbed their paychecks.
“You mean those paper receipts we used in the 80’s of last century?”
“Hell yeah, those!”
Without even a glimpse of embarrassment they copied the total costs hand written on a check and handed it over to the cashier. She stamped it and the shopping were paid. Deal done.
This all looks quite innocent. But what do you do when you have to transfer large amounts of money? Like when you want to buy a kitchen? Believe it or not: a paycheck does it all. And that’s where it really went wrong.
I never expected to find a website about our hometown Tourteron. And to be honest I didn’t. Yet I can tell you that there is one.
I received a friendly email in French from Nathalie Justin who lives right across the fruit market. She is big in town, part of the town’s party commitee and owner / webmistress of letourteronnais.fr. She wrote that she discovered our official Supergites website when she was searching the web for information.
The site about le Tourteonnais (all Tourteron) provides the latest news and a dozen of sweet pictures of the kids parades. Some pages are not finished but a guest book already shows the towns appreciation. And I discovered Tourteron has a weapon with three dragons. The first signs of history…WOW.
Most important she keeps the calendar pretty up to date so you know when the town will organise its brocantes. Funny enough there’s no sight of the Tour de Tourteron which is held the third Saturday in August. Maybe she’s not a fan of les cyclistes or it’s organised by others. 🙂
The site is a must see .. not only for the news on Tourteron but even more for the culture of French homemade web design. Je l’aime!
The local website
The French do have a funny way of working. Most of the time they’re more friendly than the global opinion suggests. And some times not.
We bought the mill in March 2009 from a French doctor who lives 30 kilometers in the nearby city of Rethel. The family used to use the mill only as a summer get-away. Therefore it was not insulated nor decorated. And it had no mailbox.
With the first mail was a handwritten note requesting a mailbox. The previous owner never received any mail at the Ruelle de la Fontaine (Spring Alley). The note, written on the back of a letter, was stuck between the shutters. We thought it was so sweet that we bought a typical French boîte aux lettre the very next day and fixed it at the side of the fence.
When we picked up this weeks mail there was a new and very official letter from the main postoffice in Attigny. With some help of a dictionary we were able to translate the meaning: our brand new mailbox was too far from the public road. With the rain and snow of the past weeks the postman probably got sick and tired of getting his shoes dirty. There’s not much we can do though. The fence IS the official border of our land. The mail box is fixed exactly on that border. We guess they think that the dirt road to the mill is private property. It sure looks like it.
The down side of this story is that we have to write a letter to the postoffice of Attigny to explain the situation:
Cher monsieur Facteur,
Dans votre lettre d’entre vous nous demande de mettre notre boîte aux lettres sur le côté de la voie publique (D30). Nous sommes au regret de vous dire que ce n’est pas possible. Cette pays n’est pas la nôtre. Sur une précédente demande par l’un de vos facteurs, nous avons installé la boîte aux lettres à la frontière officielle de notre pays aussi proche que possible de la clôture.
La route humide et sale, va bientôt être beaucoup mieux après la rénovation de l’usine est terminée. Nous espérons continuer à recevoir du courrier à la Ruelle de la Fontaine.
Marco de Boer / Hugo Kalf
You have places where you eat and places where you have dinner. To our big surprice we discovered one in Mouzon. For sure we’re not the first: Les Échevins is in Michelin’s Guide Rouge and deserves this BIG time.
Each year, on my birthday, right between Christmas and New Year, we go hunting for a good restaurant in the French country side. This year we bumped into Les Échevins (the Aldermen) in the center of Mouzon, a peaceful quiet town with a huge church and an old city gate. It used to be of some importance but lost this stature centuries ago.
Les Échevins is an absolute MUST go if you stay around. The food does not only look pretty but it’s a feast for the taste buds.
Restaurant Les Échevins
33 r. Charles de Gaulle
F – 08210 Mouzon
Téléphone : 03 24 26 10 90
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
Website : http://www.restaurant-lesechevins.fr
19€ (weekday lunch),
26€/51€ – Menu: 32€/46€
Cuisine – à la mode. A welcoming rustic restaurant in a 17C half-timbered building. Well-priced, daily-changing menus with precise cooking and direct flavours. Impeccable service.