Bonne Année ! 

As we’re well into our winter break, I thought I would reflect a little on our first closed season after such a busy summer. As I’ve said a few times before…we were definitively ready for the break. We are now feeling much more refreshed and relaxed as well as making good progress with our ‘to-do list’.

Highlights for me over the last couple of months have been a week in the Canaries, a 3 week road trip which included seeing family in London and Derby, some great down-time on the beautiful North Norfolk coast in the stunning Freeholders cottage, running the brilliant Marathon du Cognac, the Christmas parties and get togethers that we have hosted and been to and the warm 18 degree sunny afternoons during late December.

Less pleasant activities have been decorating our kitchen, living room, back stairs & landing and one of our non-guest bedrooms, dealing with a leaking roof, faulty hot water system and various other maintenance matters, the -7 degree mornings during November and the coughs and colds that came with change of seasons.

The jazz guest weekends have been a great success so far and we have also accepted ad-hoc requests from other guests to stay when we were able to do so. I am starting to look forward now to next season and we already have 100 guest nights booked in and are full on a few weekends in the spring and summer. Given this time last year we hadn’t even started advertising, I’m really pleased with this.

In the coming weeks before we formally reopen, our projects include decorating a few more rooms (it is great to be making progress with the non-guest accommodation decorating that we didn’t get time to do last year!), some family visits, a winter sun holiday, running the Paris marathon and refreshing the house and garden ready for the 2023 season.

So, all in all I think it’s been a pretty good balance between R&R and improvement projects so far this winter. I’ll write again as we officially open for 2023!