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Pouy-Loubrin, France


La Prairie - An outdoor holiday retreat in the South West of France

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La Prairie will be a sustainable, self-sufficient boutique retreat in south western France. Spend your holidays in classic caravans, safari tents or eco huts. Try our organic grown veggies, take a dip in our natural pool, learn about permaculture.

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10 following
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339 connections
FUND

$1,445 of $40,000 target


0 days to go

Project Location

Pouy-Loubrin, France

Traduction française en bas de la page

What's the idea?

We plan to transform the 7.5 hectares of land into La Prairie.  A place to come for:

  • Holidays.
  • Longer stays for remote workers who crave an inspiring place to work.
  • Group getaways (workshops, retreats) that will benefit from the peace and quiet.

We will provide a mixture of ready-to-use safari tents, classic caravans and ecologically sound wooden cabins to stay in all the year round, growing to a maximum of 25 units.   Our aim is not to cram people in like sardines, but to give a more secluded experience.  This is not Euro Camp.

In exchange for support, we are offering travelers great reward packages so you can come and stay and have some fun with us.  If you aren't planning to visit, but would still like to help then you can also just donate,  or maybe use a reward as a gift for someone else.

We will provide investment opportunities for future phases of the project to those who came at the start and want to be part of this family and make La Prairie a regular part of their holidays.

There will be:

  • A large non-chemical swimming pool using reed beds to filter the water for chilling out by during the day.
  • A covered platform for
    • workshops, such as permaculture and organic farming seminars or team building.
    • activities such as yoga, painting, martial arts etc
  • A music bar / outdoor cinema at night.
  • Al fresco dining.
  • A converted train carriage for remote workers or dining if it’s cold.  With high speed satellite internet access.
  • Full catering facilities.
  • Some dormitory tents/huts for W.O.O.F'ers and those staying  on a budget.  The luxury we are going to provide is inclusive not exclusive.
  • As Andy and I love a good party, once in a while we will host a small music festival.

Environmental objectives:

  • No mobile homes will be allowed on site and cars will be parked off site. 
  • Approximately 1 hectare of the land will be set aside for growing organic vegetables and keeping animals. Using permaculture principles.
  • No permanent structures are allowed on the land and it is not attached to the power grid so the business will be completely off grid. 
  • Water is supplied by it's own artesian well and solar energy will provide electricity. 
  • For cooking we will use bio digesters to produce methane gas. 
  • We will encourage people who stay at the site to get involved with the farming activities. 
  • We will run perma-culture and organic farming seminars.
  • All food not grown on site will be sourced from local organic farms - Gers has become a hub for organic producers in France.
  • Where possible local business and labour will be used to build and run La Prairie.  Community is key.  We want to be a benefit corporation.

How did I get here?

For a few years now, I have been looking to get out of the industry I work in and to start up a business that is more ethical in it's approach and not purely profit driven.

A few lucky coincidences and the support of my close friends, Andy and Joanna Coecup (who have provided the land and inspiration for this project), led me to La Prairie and the opportunity to create a business that combines a love of good food and a desire to create a community where like minded people can come to work, rest and play.

So it was with relief that on the way home from securing the land for La Prairie, a chance encounter at Edinburgh Airport led me to Travelstarter and the opportunity to fund a project more ethically  by not having to involve financial institutions.  

The Goal

My aim is to create a holiday retreat using sound environmentally friendly practices that people will want to keep coming back to and get involved with.

The principles of John Seymour (author of “The complete Book of Self Sufficiency”) and George McRobie (author of “Small is Possible”) underpin what I am trying to do.

How?

We will take a phased approach to this project.  The funding from Travelstarter will get phase 1 kicked off.

There is a detailed requirements specification for the whole project with a project plan that breaks down the delivery of all the components that make up La Prairie into realistic build phases.

Timeline:

  • Nov '14 - April 2015 - Secure funding and complete project plan and design of site.
  • May 2015 - Prepare site, put up first 6 tents /huts & covered platform
  • August 2015 - First units available to stay in
  • Sept '15 - May '16 -  additional 10 accommodation units, and pool built.  Vegetable patches planted.
  • Sept '16 - May 17 - final 9 accommodation units added.  Train carriage for remote workers installed.

Project Gallery

Looking from South to North, La Prairie is the field on the far side of the lake.La Prairie se situe à l'arrière plan, après le lac.

Looking from South to North, La Prairie is the field on the far side of the lake.La Prairie se situe à l'arrière plan, après le lac.

Cyrus working on Andy's organic farm.Cyrus en train de travailler sur la ferme biologique d'Andy.

Cyrus working on Andy's organic farm.Cyrus en train de travailler sur la ferme biologique d'Andy.

The Pyrenees mountains can just be made out in the distance.Au loin, on peut apercevoir les Pyrénées.

The Pyrenees mountains can just be made out in the distance.Au loin, on peut apercevoir les Pyrénées.

Looking away from the Pyrenees mountains.En tournant le dos aux Pyrénées.

Looking away from the Pyrenees mountains.En tournant le dos aux Pyrénées.

Andy's organic vegetables.Les légumes bios d'Andy.

Andy's organic vegetables.Les légumes bios d'Andy.

The local chateau.Le château du coin.

The local chateau.Le château du coin.

FUND

$1,445 of $40,000 target


0 days to go

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TravelMaker

Cyrus Semmence
Email verified
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339 connections
Cyrus Semmence
Company
La Prairie
Location
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Connected
Facebook (428 friends)

About

Hi,

Firstly thank you for taking the time to look at my Travelstarter page, hopefully you will feel some affinity to what I am trying to do and want to get involved...

From a young age I was lucky enough to be a regular traveler, going on holiday with my parents or visiting my dad on his overseas assignments (he was a civil engineer who worked all over the world). He saw first hand the damage corporate capitalism was doing to our environment and was a keen anti-establishmentarian. My home while growing up was full of books like “Small is Possible” by George McRobie that provided a more considered approach to living, society and how to really help people.

My first experience of living away from home came when I went to South Africa in 1991 to help my dad with a mussel farm project he had set up to provide a cheap source of protein to the poor in South Africa.

Roll on a few years, working in an office and thoroughly sick of it I went to Thailand for 3 months. I ended up staying for 6 and my love affair with Koh Phangan and Had Yuan beach began. A chance decision to train at Horizon Thai boxing camp on Had Tien has resulted in me meeting some of the most interesting people I know and influenced me greatly in wishing to get a project like this off the ground and help change the way we use our environment.

Company
La Prairie
Location
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Position in team
Team Leader
Connected
Facebook (428)

About

Hi,

Firstly thank you for taking the time to look at my Travelstarter page, hopefully you will feel some affinity to what I am trying to do and want to get involved...

From a young age I was lucky enough to be a regular traveler, going on holiday with my parents or visiting my dad on his overseas assignments (he was a civil engineer who worked all over the world). He saw first hand the damage corporate capitalism was doing to our environment and was a keen anti-establishmentarian. My home while growing up was full of books like “Small is Possible” by George McRobie that provided a more considered approach to living, society and how to really help people.

My first experience of living away from home came when I went to South Africa in 1991 to help my dad with a mussel farm project he had set up to provide a cheap source of protein to the poor in South Africa.

Roll on a few years, working in an office and thoroughly sick of it I went to Thailand for 3 months. I ended up staying for 6 and my love affair with Koh Phangan and Had Yuan beach began. A chance decision to train at Horizon Thai boxing camp on Had Tien has resulted in me meeting some of the most interesting people I know and influenced me greatly in wishing to get a project like this off the ground and help change the way we use our environment.

Team Members

Andy Coecup

Business Partner

After an eventful career in the music industry Andy (who is one half of barn stormers Groove Armada) and his wife Jo found themselves in the South of France. From small beginnings of self-sufficient growing, things have evolved into an organic farm producing inexpensive cereals, vegetables and salad.

Everything they harvest is sold directly and locally. The quality of the produce means that demand outstrips supply.

The land for this campsite forms part of Andy's farm and is organically certified.

Andy and Jo will also be providing advice and guidance to me. They have a wealth of practical experience, having learned how to farm from scratch.


Maryjane Claydon

Permaculture Specialist

Maryjane Claydon completed a life-changing Permaculture Consultant's Design course in 1991.
Since then she has lived and worked on projects in the UK , Spain , India and Canada.
Now a mother living in a community in France , she continues to design her life using Permaculture principles.
She has a certificate of Advanced Permaculture Teacher Facilitation , and a Diploma of Permaculture Design.


traduction française

La Prairie – un refuge naturel pour des vacances dans le sud-ouest de la France

La Prairie deviendra un refuge durable et autonome dans le sud-ouest de la France. Vous pourrez y passer vos vacances dans des caravanes classiques, tentes safari ou huttes écologiques. Vous pourrez aussi y goûter nos légumes biologiques, vous baigner dans notre piscine naturelle ou en apprendre plus sur la permaculture.

Quelle est l'idée derrière le projet ?
Nous avons pour but de transformer le site de 7,5 hectares pour y construire La Prairie. Il s'agira d'un endroit où passer ses vacances, pour travailler, pour ceux qui cherchent l'inspiration et enfin d'un paisible lieu pour des escapades au grand calme !
Nous y fournirons un mélange de tentes-safari, de caravanes et de cabanes écologiques tout au long de l'année.
Notre but n'est pas d'obliger les vacanciers à vivre serrés comme des sardines mais d'offrir une expérience isolée et relaxante.
En échange de votre soutien, nous offrirons aux voyageurs des packs-récompense qui vous permettront de venir nous rendre visite ! Si vous ne pensez pas encore prendre des vacances à La Prairie mais souhaitez tout de même apporter votre aide, continuez à lire !
Nous offrirons des possibilités d'investissement pour les différentes phases du projet à ceux qui nous auront soutenu et feront alors partie de la famille de La Prairie.


Send message to Cyrus Semmence

3% Raised
wheel

$1,445

raised

of $40,000 target

by

15 funders


0 days to go

by funding you can earn one of the exciting rewards.

3% Raised
wheel

$1,445

raised

of $40,000 target

by

15 funders


0 days to go

Rewards Offered

Souvenir
Souvenir

Fund $5 or more

Our greatful appreciation!

Food
Food

Fund $20 or more

Lunch for 2

Accommodation
Accommodation
limited

Fund $455 or more

Relax at La Prairie for a week

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