La Belle Vue (3/3)

“We have been looking at about 60 potential properties in France over the years. At the end we decided that Nefiès was the place for us. We had passed by the house several times and finally we just had to knock on the door and ask if we could buy the property. We felt instantly, when entering the house and the terrace, that this was the place for our B&B. We bought the house in November 2014 and I was ready to move to France once again. The house is built 1854 by a very wealthy wine farmer. He had the largest winery in the area as well as working for the Bank of France. When they died 15 years ago, with no kids to take over, the land was separated from the property. The house, still named “Beaulacs house” by the people in the village, was taken over by a british woman before becoming ours. Luckily for us, a lot of the original characteristics of the house was still there such as doors, stuccoes and windows. However, it was in great need of repair and renovation. Underneath one of the stuccoes we found a text saying “Long live the emperor, the republic and all its consequences. - 1854”. It felt, literally, like receiving a message from the people building the house. Owning an old house is a responsibility. You are part of the history of the house and have to preserve it. Nefiès is a small genuine French village with about 1000 people living here. It has two restaurants, one café and very friendly people. My nickname here, before they got to know me, was “the swedish woman”. I guess they thought of me as a bit strange moving here without my husband and renovating all the time. I usually got asked three questions when I went shopping: “How are you?”, “How is the renovation going?” and “When is your husband coming?" We're a group of people that usually go to the café together. At one point, before our opening, I had too much renovation to do and could not make it to our usual date. Suddenly, it knocked on the door and outside was eight people from the village ready to help me out. It was perfect, I really needed the help.”

Yvonne Tenninge 
Host since 2014, 6 units 
La Belle Vue, Neffiés, France
Photos by: Agnes Maltesdotter & us.

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