Maryse and Ivan have been owners of this fantastic micro resort, Mas de Thau in the Languedoc-Roussillon since December 2013.
Mas de Thau is a luxurious retreat set amongst beautiful French countryside, yet close to the sandy beaches of Sete and Marseillan.
Here is their story…
Introduction – a brief intro on you and your family…
Yvan and I arrived on the mas on December 23rd 2013 with our 2 dogs and 2 suitcases, all our furniture, dishes, … still were in the storage in Versailles.
Why did you decide to start your own holiday accommodation business?
We had a dream …and it took us 3 years to find out the perfect place to realize our project. Yvan is an ex-army officer and after 34 years in the “Gendarmerie” in Versailles, he wanted to go back to his hometown (Villeveyrac, 10 kms from the Mas) and do something different. I spent all my holidays at my aunt’s farm in Lorraine and I always wanted to give to children the wonderful holidays I had.
What was the toughest part about setting it up?
The first workers arrived in beginning January 2014, to cut the huge steel wine tanks in the cave which hasn’t been used for 12 years. The domain dates back to the middle ages, with lots of grain and vegetable fields being replaced in 1850 by a vineyard, abandoned for more than 10 years.
What was the most memorable/enjoyable part of setting it up?
Our team of workers started to restore the mas. Everybody and us worked very hard. We all lived in very basic conditions, mobil-homes and caravans. February 2014 was cold, and I was cooking big pots of vegetable and meat soup, and lots of cakes. It always was a pleasure to see the smiles on the faces when I was bringing my special treats. We shared lots of barbecues, and fantastic Languedoc wines.
What does your average working day involve?
My average working day starts with the picking up of fresh bread and viennoiseries at the bakery in Montagnac and delivering at the guest’s door, while Yvan is cleaning the pools area. Usually the kids get up early and come with me to feed the animals. Brief meeting at the kid’s club with the animation team, and kids arrive to play with the animators, little chat with parents for giving advices to visit places around or have coffee at the bar. I’m keeping an eye on all employees of Mas de Thau who are helping us to focus on delivering the right service to our guests. We always are around in case our guests need something.
What advice would you give to families wanting to holiday with you and why is your place so special?
I completely understand for parents to enjoy the best holidays with their children. It’s great to see their faces when they arrive on the mas and think they finally hit a fantastic family friendly spot.
If you could pick just two attractions/places to visit in your area what would they be?
We live close to 2 middle age historical places full of interesting spots to visit, Pezenas the hometown of Molière, and Saint Guilhem le desert.
I also enjoy the lovely town of Meze with the little restaurants by the harbour and the beach.
Is there anything you would like to highlight that might be interesting to families with babies/toddlers/young children who are thinking of staying with you?
You can relax and travel easily, not necessary to bring your baby and toddler’s equipment, it’s provided and installed in your accommodation : cots with sheets and blanket, high chair, plastic baby bath, bath toys, change mattress, bottle heater, sterilizer, booster seat, plastic cutlery, stroller.
In kid’s club, babies and toddlers will play in their own space under the nannies’ supervision. They could go for a nap in a bed in the quiet resting room. The nannies have a space for “change” with a changing table and different size toilets. The entire indoor and outdoor kid’s HQ is gated and secured.
The pools area is entirely gated and secured, close by a portal is the favourite spot for all. The heated pool starts with a baby and toddler’s shallow area, and finishes by a deeper dive area, lots of water games and fun for all.
In one sentence can you explain what life is like where you live?
Mas de Thau is completely immersed in a beautiful countryside setting, close to the beaches, where you can feel completely at home.