Print Posted By Lost in France on 16 May 2008 in Real France - Expat Interviews

Running a Chambre d'Hote in the Limousin

Lynn and JonathonWhat made you move to France?
We moved to France two & half years ago, to have a new adventure, the kids had left Uni and we decided to to start a new business, it was something we had always talked about and finally we made the move.

Which part of France do you live in?
We live in the Haute Vienne, a beautiful medieval walled town called Le Dorat, it is a wonderful place to live as it is central ,to the airports of Limoges and Poiters, we have a train station, hospital, cinema shops everything you need really, the community have made us feel very welcome and have helped us settle in.

Do you have children?
We have two Children our son still lives in Aberdeen and our daughter lives in surrey.

Research all the different areas, if you are thinking of setting up business, have a plan and get a good accountant.

What is your age?
I am 46 years old.

Where were you born?
In Aberdeenshire, Scotland.

Do you work, if so what do you do and how difficult was it to find work or start a business in France?
We set up our own business called La Petite Fontaine it is a cafe bar with Chambre d'hotes, we also have music events everything from classical to jazz, we found it relatively easy to set up our business with the Chambre d' Commerce in Limoges. and the help of a wonderful French accountant, we were told before we started that the French system was difficult, but having had our own business in Aberdeenshire in Scotland the French system is not that bad, believe me. We have been very surprised how quickly our business has developed, we now have a full time employee, who we couldn't do with out, so working in France is good for us.

What was the worst mistake you made when buying in France?

Your best tip for people considering moving to France?
Research all the different areas, if you are thinking of setting up business, have a plan and get a good accountant.

Did you find it hard to integrate or adjust to your new life in France and do you have any tips to help others?
We didn't find it difficult to integrate at all, adjusting to a slower pace of life takes a bit of time when you keep forgetting everything shuts from 12 till 2pm.

What's the best thing about living in France?
We think it is the fact that there is still a community lifestyle here in France, as we are working we are just as busy as we were in Scotland, so not a lot of free time but when we do get the chance to get out its really relaxing sitting in someone else's cafe and watching the world go by.

And the worst?
I have to say the language, our French is getting much better but on the whole it is very difficult, we look forward to day we can just have a conversation without having to think about it. I'm sure it will come.

Learn More

You can find out more about Lynn and Jonathan's Cafe Bar & Chambre d'Hote at their website

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