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‘One day we will buy a derelict barn and renovate it’ we said. That was 10 years ago, and here we are now in France with our renovated barn and a small business. The journey has taken us through different countries and numerous rental properties searching for the best qualities in a home and an environment we’d want our family to thrive in. In 2012 we visited the area twice and stood on the ridge overlooking the village. We could hear dogs barking, cow bells jingling, the odd farm vehicle trundling around and we wondered what the village was called. Little did we know then that we were looking at the village we would be calling home and admiring the old Savoyard farms, one of which would soon be ours.
We viewed property after property but each one was missing that extra spark. We had seen Ferme Les Bouts online and in estate agent windows but dismissed it until we were encouraged to take a quick look….’you may just like it’ were the estate agent’s words. Driving up the road and into La Cote d’Arbroz village gave us a warm feeling that yes, we may just like it. What is now the drive was piled high with snow from the snow ploughs, the Grenier was falling down and the main barn an imposing building in desperate need of love. Clambering over solid piles of ice and snow we managed to reach the patio area and then we saw what sold it to us….the view! WOW! We both stood in silence gazing at the view…’Well, we ought to look inside and see just how much of a project this is’. Even walking into the original dwelling filled us with excitement…..it was perfect (in a run down, needs a lot of work way!) and just what we were looking for.
PETITE FERME LES BOUTS
Renovations started in 2014 with work on Petite Ferme Les Bouts. It already existed as a dwelling however was in desperate need of work. It wasn’t just a case of new floor tiles and a lick of paint; it needed a new ceiling, concrete floor, walls, windows, sewage connections, electricity plus water supply and everything else inbetween! Internally it was dark and closed in, but externally stunning views which needed to be embraced. Work continued for another 18 months and finally we had a bright, airy and modern property. As a family we enjoyed living in Petite Ferme Les Bouts while renovation of the upper 2 floors continued which is now our family home.
GRENIER LES BOUTS
Grenier Les Bouts has proved to be a delight to own. From day one we wanted to create a hideaway for couples and were really excited to see how it was going to develop. Our whole family, across 3 generations has worked tirelessly to put a huge spark of life into the building and it now stands proud overlooking the valley. Work also started in 2014, underpinning the walls, stabalising the block work, removing and replacing the upper floor and concreting the ground floor. The lovely original brick ceiling was too unstable so needed to be taken down and a wooden vaulted ceiling replaced it. Following this, a new roof was built, the space for the patio doors prepared, insallation put in and all utilities connected. Floors, stairs, kitchen, bathroom, painting was all completed by Winter 2016. Externally we needed to wait until the Spring when we were able to complete the patio area. We welcomed our first guests into Grenier Les Bouts in June 2016.