By booking a stay at our farmhouse, you acknowledge that you may experience, purposely or not, a different lifestyle from that at home.
And you implicitly agree to abide by our farmhouse “ground rules” and recommendations, as detailed below.
1/ Purpose of stay
You should have an interest in renewable energies. Sharing hands-on experience on this topic is indeed the very purpose of our farmhouse.
You should also understand the constraints of staying off-the-grid in a remote location, and set your expectations accordingly.
2/ Contact prior to booking
We request a preliminary discussion through video conferencing prior to your booking, so that we can explain the context and the constraints of our eco-tourism offer.
3/ Booking cancellation and refund policy
Payment is to be settled at the time of the booking, according to our cancellation policy.
We understand that you have access to insurance that can cover the cancellation of your stay. Therefore we will not refund you any amount in case you cancel your booking, whatever the reason and the notice given.
We may however, at our own discretion, offer you another stay at another date, provided we are able to find another guest for your replacement. Alternatively, we may consider, at our own discretion, transferring your booking to a person of your choice.
4/ Identity checks
We are requested to provide the local authorities with the identity of our guests.
Please allow your travel documents (passport for foreign nationals, ID card or passport for French citizens) to be scanned upon arrival.
It is absolutely necessary that you be covered by a comprehensive travel insurance scheme that will enable you to be taken care of should anything happen to you. The farmhouse is located in a remote and sparsely populated area: the nearest medical facility is 30 kms away. Your travel insurance should therefore cover emergency evacuation, and repatriation as the case might be.
We may request proof of your travel insurance coverage upon arrival.
We list down below the major risks you may encounter while staying at and wandering around our farmhouse.
6/ Risks and Precautions
You should be aware of existing, albeit unlikely, dangers of wandering around the countryside, and take the necessary precautions accordingly.
Avoid eating and drinking anything from the natural environment. Not every mushroom nor every berry is safe for human consumption. And it sometimes takes a lot of expertise to discern the bad from the good. Also, bacterial and parasitic contamination from roaming wildlife has become endemic.
As far as fauna is concerned, there are seven creatures to be cautious about:
– Vipers. Bites may not be lethal, but still remain very serious anyway. Vipers mostly stay in high grass and weeds, and in rocky structures. Easily scared, they will only bite you as a last defensive resort if you happen to step on them. Just avoid walking outside clearly identified paths, and always take a stick with you when you go for a walk. If you have to walk through high grass, make sure you put high boots on, and make some noise with your stick as you walk.
– Ticks. Tiny little blood suckers, that go unnoticed. They actually only became a pest a few years ago, when they got infected with the spreading Lyme disease, which some of them carry. They can be found just about anywhere, and might just hop on you as you walk by. So make sure you wear high-cut shoes, and completely cover your neck, arms and legs whenever you wander outdoor.
– Bees, wasps and hornets. We all know about them. They just seem to get bigger by the year. You should only worry if you have some sort of allergy. Otherwise, when outside, just avoid breathing or yawning with your mouth wide open.
– Dogs. Shepherd dogs actually. They usually come in black and white. They have been trained to relentlessly bite sheep’s legs, and they simply can’t get enough of it. So they might go for yours. Brave as they are, they will come at you from behind. Just use your stick to keep them at bay if they get too close.
– Wolves. A new entry on this list, courtesy from our “friends of the earth”. However, their presence around here remains elusive, as reported sightings are highly questionable. Just avoid wearing a red riding hood cape, you never know.
– Hunters. The guys with 4×4’s, wearing orange vests, usually over military fatigues. You may have seen our yellow vests carrying paintball guns during live shows in Paris. Well, the orange vests carry real guns. And that is obviously the problem. Last year they accounted for 13 deaths in France, about the same as bees, wasps and hornets (around 15 a year), but far more than vipers (less than 1 a year on average), ticks (0), dogs (around 2 a year) and wolves (0) put together.
– Drivers. There are over 3,000 fatalities by road accident year in year out in France. Numbers speak for themselves: drivers are by far the worst hazard you will encounter in our region. Take it very seriously. There is an appalling speed-driving culture in this country, compounded by the reluctance from authorities to declare and impose a strict zero tolerance for blood alcohol content. If you have to drive on our windy mountain roads, do drive slowly and stick to the very right side, because the guys coming on the other side simply don’t. Beside the occasional cattle, wild boar and deer, beware of over-sized logging trucks, harvesters, and double milk trailers. Let alone the hunter’s 4×4’s poorly parked on the roadside, and the neighbours leisurely chatting in their cars in the middle of the road.
7/ House Ground Rules
The kind of lifestyle we offer is likely to deviate significantly from your daily routine, purposely. This is actually the main reason why you will come and stay at our place: to experience a different environment – A paradigm shift that may imply drastic behavioural changes.
Hence, we have established a set of ground rules that are compulsory on the premises. Therefore, if you do not agree with these ground rules, please do not book any stay.
8/ General – No unruly kids, no pets, no smoking
Even though it has been revamped using modern materials and technology, our farmhouse remains an old building, constructed with traditional materials such as stones, clay and wood. It thus remains very sensitive to humidity and impacts.
You are therefore requested to handle water carefully when using the bathroom, and avoid splashes and spills that would be extremely detrimental to the flooring and the overall structure. Also, you are requested to behave gently and avoid jumping around in your bedroom.
Hence, our farmhouse is not suitable for unruly kids, who might cause irreparable damage, and who will find the place very boring anyway.
For the same reason, pets are not allowed on the premises. Besides, local dogs and cats have such a territorial behaviour that any stranger straying outside the property may be in dire trouble.
Smoking is obviously not allowed throughout the premises, not even by the windows, as it constitutes a serious fire hazard.
It is understood that you will be held liable for any property damage that you may be responsible for. We therefore strongly recommend that you check your insurance policy accordingly.
9/ Noise control
The bedrooms have been soundproofed the best we could. However, you understand that, due to the building wooden structures, sound still easily spreads throughout the house. Hence, please be considerate for other guests, and try and keep your noise level within acceptable thresholds. In particular, please avoid flushing the toilets at night if possible
10/ Eco-responsibility: waste disposal, power and hot water usage
As part of our philosophy, we try to live in harmony with our natural surroundings, without being fanatic about it. We understand that our modern lifestyle does impact the environment. However, we acknowledge we are not willing to give up comfort items that we consider an indisputable mankind achievement.
We may do without TV programmes, but not without internet connection; without hair dryers, but not without mobile phones.
In essence, our understanding of “eco-responsibility” is to reduce waste and share available resources with the community the best we can.
In this respect, you will be requested to follow our waste disposal system, and to avoid unnecessary usage of power and hot water, which are limited resources in our off-the-grid conditions.
For, due to these off-the-grid conditions, the farmhouse may actually run out of hot water. You therefore acknowledge that you are aware of this possibility, that you will accept it if it happens, and that you will not complain nor consider the farmhouse liable for this inconvenience.
11/ No shoes inside the house
For hygienic purposes, shoes may not be worn inside the house: slippers will be graciously provided to each guest for his/her stay.
Eating in the bedrooms is not allowed. Please use the ground floor facilities for any meal or snack.
You may bring your own food, you may do your own cooking with available produce, or you may share what will be on offer, most likely salads, soups, grills, local cheese and fresh fruit. Please note that cooking oil is prohibited, as we do not have proper ventilation and exhaust.
Please also note that alcohol consumption is not allowed on the premises, as we do not have the required license. Give your body a break!
13/ No hygienic accessories disposal in the toilet bowl
Hygienic accessories (sanitary pads, tampons, condoms) are to be disposed of in the specific bags and sealed containers provided, and NOT in the toilet bowl, so as not to clog the waste water treatment system.
You may lock the sealed containers, and hand them over for proper disposal when you leave.
Our local spiders are totally harmless to humans, and help us keep the house clean: they kill the invisible bugs that may harm you. Please don’t kill them.