The Good Life France Magazine




The Good Life France Magazine brings you the best of France - inspirational and exclusive features, fabulous photos, mouth-watering recipes, tips, guides, ideas and much more...


Published by the award winning team at The Good Life France

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11 months ago

Issue No. 12

Sensational cities to tiny villages, food and wine, culture and heritage. Champagne, an aristocratic saffron grower, Anger, Montparnasse, Morzeine, Carol Drinkwater shares her passion for France. Gorgeous photos and fabulous features will transport you to the heart of France in this brilliant, free magazine...

I caught up with Tim and

I caught up with Tim and Ingrid just as the magnitude of what they’d done was dawning on them. An Auberge in the Auvergne Plans evolved, were re-shaped, re-born, rejected, re-invented, knocked about a bit, re-worked and either given up on, or applied with an eye to taste and quality that can only come from long years in the hotel service industry... and it shows. It almost goes without saying that whatever funds they had when the brainchild was born, were soon metamorphosed into bricks, mortar, furniture, bedding, linen and sundry other furnishings and tasteful bits. Never mind the bank balance; look at the auberge! Tim, in a moment of reflection told me: ‘It was always going to take something really quite special to tempt me away from the green, lush, dramatic land that I’ve been proud to call home for so long’. What did it for him was the relatively unknown volcanic region of France called the Auvergne. It may even have been me that told Tim about the Auvergne, as I’ve been coming here for years... then again it might be because Ingrid’s parents had recently retired to ‘nearby’ Languedoc, and after 20 years in the UK, for Ingrid the Auvergne was a case of finally going home. Either way, it was a new beginning. As is so often the case these days, English Tim and French Ingrid met by online dating, and I have to say...Tim did very well out of the digital coup de foudre. They now have a son, Lorenzo, who in a year or so should be good for dishwashing, and a short while after that, waiting on, preparing meals, and

generally managing the entire business while mum and dad sit by the river sipping the award-winning wines produced at Saint-Georges d’Ibry in the Languedoc. That is how these things work, isn’t it? A new life in France Each year, many people contemplate doing much the same, up-rooting and setting up home in France. In Ingrid, Tim has a French anchor, and that’s sure to make quite a difference, not least when it comes to the morass that is French bureaucracy. The reality is that there are hurdles to overcome, but all you need is the patience to overcome them; it’s no use complaining. You have to get stuck in, red tape can be quite appealing in a masochistic kind of way. The UK’s departure from the EU is certain to throw up yet more hurdles; c’est la vie. But when the dust settles, normality will resume, and the Auvergne can continue its rise in favour with Britain and the rest of Europe. I have to say that what they have achieved so far is awe-inspiring. The auberge is comfortable, welcoming and a peaceful place to retreat from the brouhaha of modern life. As a base from which to explore this part of the Auvergne it couldn’t be better, and it just goes to show what can be achieved with positive thinking. Tim’s final word on the matter: ‘For us, the Auvergne hasn’t just ticked every box. It’s blown us away in terms of what it can offer, and more importantly...what it can offer discerning tourists of the future’. But you don’t have to take Tim’s word for it; come and see for yourself. Auberge de Chabanettes See Tim's top tips for anyone thinking of running an Auberge in France next page...