Help us set up home in a Renaissance château and learn about nonviolent communication in central France



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This listing is a Last minute host. They have let us know that they are looking for help immediately as well as at other times of the year.

 Min stay requested: at least 3 weeks

  • Description


    Hi there!

    In July 2019, Alexia (my wife), our two daughters, Ludivine (born in 2016) and Constance (born in March 2019) and myself (Thomas) left Paris to live in a château at the heart of France.
    Can you belive it?!! We live in a château!! Its amazing and incredibly beautiful... with its own lake, horses, and reindeer and you know all sorts of animals and fun: from otters to storks...

    The château was built at the very end of Middle Ages (dungeon and tower) and the very beginning of Renaissance era (gallery). Other buildings were built in 1630. We live in the most recent part (1830) but of course when there is more than 5000m2 or 53000 sqf of edifications there is soooooooo much to be done.

    What we’re looking for:

    1 House running workawayer: Cooking, shopping, cleaning and taking care of the workawayers facilities and needs.
    1 Construction expert. In charge of day to day operations of the workawayers.
    1 Nanny for 2-4 kids ages 1-5 unschooling approach
    4-5 Workawayers with will and energy to work a range of different tasks from gardening to construction


    Transforming an old guard house to host workawayers: doing a kitchen, some floors and making it super comfortable to have independence and a cool place to be.

    Flipping an old house to become rentable and usable for one of our workawayers who decided to live here fora few years.


    In our “previous lives”, I was a trader then an entrepreneur, Alexia a finance advisor before becoming a stage actress.

    Alexia is now a certified Nonviolent Communication (NVC) trainer and I am closing down my previous firm to focus on managing the château and the activities we plan to develop here.

    As well as making this beautiful Renaissance building our home, we plan to open a centre for Nonviolent Communication (with a focus on family life) as well as a venue for weddings and family gatherings.

    We are surrounded by a 36-hectares estate and plan to plant a forest, create a forest garden (permaculture) and have more animals (we already have a few red deer, fallow deer and three peacocks). There is also a 4 ha-pond and several streams running through the estate.

    With regards our daughters’ education, we encourage them to learn by themselves, through curiosity, interaction and observation. Therefore, they do not go to school: unschooling. Bringing them up is wonderful, magical and also a full time job! We are looking for someone who could help looking after them. Welcoming friends and visitors is a corner stone of the pedagogy. We hope that interaction with you will help them discover new languages, cultures… We would be happy to welcome families, whether they’re “unschoolers” or not.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Language practice
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Farmstay help
    Babysitting and creative play
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    The main goal of our project is to build human interactions and create bonds (it's the NVC philosophy too :))

    I (Thomas) have spent a few years in the US and loved the opportunity I had there to meet people from all over the world. We want our new place to gather many people teaching and learning from each other.
    Our château is a major point of interest of the region and this already allows us to meet many interesting people. You'll be welcome to join us and take part in all our family and "professional" activities, another way to create connections.

    We have a wonderful life here, it’s exactly where we wanted to be. I guess some aspects are quite unusual (unschooling, big castle, huge garden…) and sometimes it can get hectic but everyday is different and very often, fun!

    We just arrived here so what this place will become is yet to be defined. It will be shaped by all those who spend time here, interact and contribute. Could be you ☺ So please come take part in the adventure!

  • Help


    Here are few examples of what we'd like to help on and where your input would be very helpful:
    - dig in river beds
    - paint bathrooms
    - paint bedrooms
    - build a horse enclosure
    - change gutter
    - cut wood
    - set up a wood-stove
    - plant trees
    - create a vegetable garden and then a forest garden
    - and of course spend time with our kids (probably first priority :))

    We'd rather you stay for three weeks minimum to make sure you have time to discover the house, the garden, and of course get to know us and our daughters!

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    German: Fluent
    English: Fluent
    French: Fluent

    This host offers a language exchange
    This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
    Please contact them directly for more information.

  • Accommodation


    We are offering now 2 different types of accommodation, one in the gites you will see in the pictures some rooms that are more modern and with less classical appeal but probably more comfortable, and then in one of the houses that we are going to work with for you workawayers: la maison du guardian you will enjoy the old house of the guard of the castle: with its passageway on the left you can also see pictures in the gallery.

    The idea is that workawayers could enjoy quite a bit of independence, having your own spaces: living room, kitchen, bathroom so you can feel at home. Of course, good conversation will always be welcome and we enjoy meeting new people and sharing our lives.

    In the begining when we are less than 10 we will have lunch all together here at our home but more than that we will be needing a bit of privacy so probably you may have your own spaces also for the lunch and kitchen.

    Please note that during the winter, the houses can get cold (14°), so make sure you bring along some warm clothes. Your room will be warm!

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    We are hopefull that if you are a digital nomad you can find this as opportunity to live in a castle, we host seminars and we are capable of leaving a space for coworking area.

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    This host can provide space for campervans.

  • Can possibly accept pets

    Can possibly accept pets

    This host has said they are willing to accept those travelling with a pet.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Host ref number: 989942275188