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Beds in Gites


Sashabel
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[quote user="idun"][:-))] ROFL I have never seen a bed like that before, I suppose if the room was cold and open  plan then why not, so yes, I probably would sleep in one.[/quote]

They were quite common in Brittany as most of the family slept in one room and the closed in bed provided some privacy for Mamma and Papa.

They were pretty short too as they slept in a half sitting position

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I know that sleeping in the half sitting position was really common for a long time. Wouldn't fancy that myself, nearest I ever get is if I ever have a bad cough and prop my self up a bit, but I don't like it.
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Imagine having to go out and buy 10 Plus king size beds and everything that goes along with it!! You must think that all Gite owners are rolling in money or something, some may say they are but I think you will find the majority are not. We have good mattresses on double beds and have no complaints.

Ever thought of buying a Gite business? You may have a bit of a shock how far your small payment goes for your summer holiday..
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Never mind the width, feel the quality.  All I care about is a comfy materess.  Unlike our o/p, I don't think I've ever slept in a bed bigger than a standard UK double (with or without my o/h) with the exception of one night at a conference at Brocket Hall.  The bed was so big (about twice the size of the ones my o/h and I share chez nous) that when the alarm went off in the morning, it took me about five minutes to get to the bedside table to turn it off!
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I would also prefer a good-quality mattress, even if the bed was a double. We have a double in UK and the same brand in France - excellent mattresses, but I'm glad of the extra space just at the moment in this heat!

Most of the B&Bs we stay at and the apartments/gites we've rented have had great mattresses, along with hotels we regularly use on our drives up and down France - that's one of the main things I check up on. I suffer from a bad back; if If I have problems with that it doesn't matter how wonderful the rest of the establishment is, it won't do for me.

My in-laws' second bedroom had what was called a small double bed in it; I'd guess it was a three-quarter size - very cosy!  [:D]

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[quote user="Sashabel"]So everyone who prefers a kingsize bed to a double is overweight?!!! How patronizing!!

You can keep your old french beds - give me a modern, comfortable and decent sized bed any day.[/quote]

There was a wink included - don't get so uptight!  Thebiga made a very good point.  Gites do not generate a massive income.  We rent out our holiday home to offset the expense of having the house (hence having old beds (our taste) with excellent mattresses (we both have back problems)).  We have a mortgage on our house and our accounts show that, even with twelve weeks letting, we still made a €4,500 loss.   For us the income was still worth having (just) as it contributes to our mortgage payments / utility bills.  We would never dream of buying a place just to rent it commercially - it simply would not make economic sense.

We have never had a complaint about our beds - in fact most guests say how comfortable the beds are.  We have been asked for some weird things though - a filter coffee machine (even though we have a Senseo (with refillable dosette provided) and an Italian espresso maker), a large pasta pot...and a toaster.  The latter we thought weird as we predominantly rent to French holiday makers.  But maybe American style bread has spread to French kitchens too.  We have bought all the items requested.

MrsR51

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We stay in gites quite frequently and the quality of the mattresses varies greatly; our gite earlier this month was really quite nice but the mattress was completely worn out, which was a disappointment.

Wandering off topic a bit, we were surprised to find no breadboard or breadbasket in the gite (and no wine rack).  Not major points but curious all the same.....

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I have never had a wine rack, well, I did, they were built into the part of our garage we insulated and made into a mini cave. Ambient temperature for the red grand crus (beurk, not to my taste)! So that to me is a very strange thing to think about in a living area. I can understand people wanting a big fait tout or pasta pan. I like to have one of them with me or there to be one, even take one camping with me.

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One common problem we find is the pillows in many hotels/B&Bs etc - awful, discoloured, saggy things - only fit for the bin. One hotel we stay at regularly near Troyes has awful pillows; I've mentioned it on being asked was our stay comfortable, and have filled cards in about it too - saying how good everything else is, but pillows need replacing. As the place is in such a good position for our treks north and south and the food is pretty good too, we stick with it. We now carry a couple in the car when planning to stay there. However, if it's our favourite B&B in Beaune we're heading for, we know we won't need them.

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Just for everyday living in 'hot' France I used to find that I needed to buy new pillows regularly. I have never ever managed to wash one successfully.

Also I don't like the traversin that they put on beds in so many places. A pillow for me is a very personal item and I need to be able to hold it and handle it when asleep, and probably wrestle with it too[Www] but that is just me. Not fair on someone who is sleeping perfectly soundly  next to me is it.

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Here's a good 'un.

When our house in France was "new" (to us) we thought, for the first couple of years, that we'd rent it out for a few weeks in the summer, in order to generate a bit of money to offset the running costs. ALL the beds in the house were brand, spanking new beds with equally brand, spanking new mattresses. I would say that, at the time we first rented it out, we'd slept in one bed for a total of about 4 weeks (of nights - not the days as well[:D]) and of the rest of the beds, our two children had both probably slept about a dozen nights in another bed each, and some of the beds - and all of the bedding - were brand, spanking new and unused. Good quality, pristine condition.

Imagine, therefore, my horror to discover that out of the first two groups of "guests" who booked our home for their holiday, one (I never did find out which) treated themselves to a can of spray for bedbugs and had gone round liberally spraying the mattresses, pillows etc with it. AND IT STANK!!

It was shortly after that, and a number of other, smaller and unrelated incidents that I decided that no amount of additional income was worth it. Including the group of two families (each comprising a couple and their baby with travel cot) who managed, for reasons best known to themselves, to sleep in six beds in the course of their stay.

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Boy do we know where you are coming from! 

We have had guests who didn't wash a dish for their entire stay, ones that moved the furniture, those that bust the shower by forcing the temperature control (having problems getting a new valve so will probably need a complete new shower).  Then there were the ones that blocked the fosse - requiring a digger, new pipework and a large peg for the nose.   The new bicycles we brought were thrown around - seat punctured, dynamo and lights snapped off (then cunningly hidden).  Sun loungers broken, hammock frame snapped, muddy foot prints on rugs, red nail polish on bed linen, holes in the wall, water (from the hand held shower in the bathroom) sprayed all over the walls so that black mould grew, baths overfilled (by unattended children) so they overflowed and flooded the kitchen below - and fused the lights, thermostat on the cooker forced so we now have to buy a new oven (couldn't get a replacement thermostat).....

We have only rented for one summer (this is our second summer) and only used the place for ourselves for just a handful of weeks, most of which we have spent repairing and maintaining for renters. The final insult is that we only get an 'abatement' for expenses - when we have actually made a loss of over £4,000!! 

Next year our holiday place will be for our use only!!!

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What wonderful clients we are. We leave everything spotless, we would replace anything broken with the same standard or confess. 

Once we stayed in a gite with friends from England and I asked my friend to go into the bouanderie and get the cleaning things and she came back and said that there was nothing there. I grinned and said that there was and then I went and came back with a sweeping brush and a serpilliere and a small bucket. She looked at me and said, 'told you there was nothing'. She was rather surprised when I cleaned all the floors.

 

Please don't let this give the impression that I am a dedicated housewife/cleaner at home. I clean up, because I have to, but when I go on holiday I like somewhere to be clean when I get there and am prepared to leave a place as clean when I leave. It only feels right to me, or pay someone else to clean up after me.

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I've had quite a few bookings in the last couple of years because I have king size beds in the gites/ The Dutch especially seem to want them, and most gîtes and B&Bs don't offer them. It cost me around 900€ each to replace each standard double (including all the bedding), so it isn't cheap to do. Running gîtes is not very profitable, but you have to keep up with what people want or you lose bookings.

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Richard51 you do have a point in your findings. I must say I have mentioned it before that all our Gites are spotless when our guests arrive and we do ask them to leave them as found but we know that in a ideal world that is not going to happen and thats fine. But its when you get the people staying that just don't give a **** and leave things in such a state that it takes 2 people 6 hours to clean one property and have never seen such mess and disgust in our lives. You would not believe that people would leave the contents of there nose smeared on the walls as well as other smears!!! |These were not British or French guests I must say but we do find that if a property is going to be left in a state then I'm afraid to say that its the Brits and I feel ashamed to be one sometimes. The french leave the gites very clean in general even mopping the floors etc.

But we have had so many things that have been so annoying more than costly and the things do get broken are never said about and its not until you go to clean that you find these things and sometimes if it is on a sunday you cannot replace these things for the next guests. You can only hold so many spares of things.

This is going to be our last year of renting the gites they will just be left empty same as the pool. Everything has just become so expensive now and some years bookings are good like last year (our best) and this year very bad that we cannot live like that never knowing if you can live till the next year or not. You cannot operate a negative income business for long so thats it. Very sad but the next chapter starts now.

I wish others with Gites all the best and hope that you can make enough money to keep the dream alive.
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I was always under the impression that people stayed in gites because it was a more economical holiday than staying in a hotel. Leaving you free, as it does, to cook for yourselves, or go out if you prefer, and to have "home comforts" like a sitting room and garden. It appears from some of the comments on here and elsewhere, however, that people (well, perhaps British people, as they form the majority of the sample on here) now expect a 4 or even 5 star HOTEL level of accomodation for the price of a gite.

Now, in order to attract people...who probably wouldn't want to pay any sort of premium for the facility....potential renters "expect" (ha!) broadband, HDTV with every channel imaginable, dishwasher, washing machine, tumble dryer, beds of their preferred size and dimensions....

Such comments rarely (if ever) seem to go hand-in-hand with the phrase "I'd gladly pay a premium for...."[:D]

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There was a time when people went abroad and perhaps put up with a bit of discomfort and the dodgy plumbing because it was new and part of the adventure as that's how the locals live ..I use to carry big elastic bands to wrap round shower heads as every shower seemed to want to point anywhere except where you wanted it to go .

Not these days . People are well travelled they expect a certain standard and "roughing it a bit " does not fit in with expectations and they want the same comforts they have at home .
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[quote user="Frederick"] Not these days . People are well travelled they expect a certain standard and "roughing it a bit " does not fit in with expectations and they want the same comforts they have at home .[/quote]

That's exactly why that, more and more, I am an armchair traveller these days.

I saw a title of a book called Un Voyage autour ma Chambre....don't know what it's about as I didn't get a chance to read it but it sounds like my sort of travelling.[:D]

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[quote user="Frederick"]There was a time when people went abroad and perhaps put up with a bit of discomfort and the dodgy plumbing because it was new and part of the adventure as that's how the locals live ..I use to carry big elastic bands to wrap round shower heads as every shower seemed to want to point anywhere except where you wanted it to go .

Not these days . People are well travelled they expect a certain standard and "roughing it a bit " does not fit in with expectations and they want the same comforts they have at home .[/quote]

But I'm not talking about discomfort and dodgy plumbing...I'm talking about wanting someone else to fork out a not inconsiderable investment in order that holidaymakers can enjoy the same comforts they (may) have at home, whilst the holidaymakers are not necessarily prepared to pay for that standard.

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Thats the problem they want all the mod cons from home as you say,BUT, they don't want to pay for it. We have large but older style tv,Dishwasher, Uk & French Sat,Washing machines, Dvd & Vhs. New Mattresses etc the list goes on. Must still not be good enough perhaps because its not Flat Screen (HD)!!! We have not even put up our prices in 6 years. I Give up completly.
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Now, in order to attract people...who probably wouldn't want to pay any sort of premium for the facility....potential renters "expect" (ha!) broadband, HDTV with every channel imaginable, dishwasher, washing machine, tumble dryer, beds of their preferred size and dimensions....

Until last year when we finally bought our own place in France we holidayed in Gites for the last 25 years. Yes standards have got better but often things are provided that I found I didn't need or want. This is personal to me but- I could do without the TV and the broadband ( you're on holiday to get away from it all) Wasn't bothered about dishwasher or tumble dryer (although I had both at home)-why would you need a tumble dryer ? Use of a washing machine is useful I agree. We have a kingsize bed but on holiday would be happy with ordinary double so long as its comfortable (not like one place where we had to put the mattress on the floor to get a good nights sleep). I would also have been appalled to leave the gite in any state but spotless-indeed the last day of any holiday was always spent shopping for food to take back to UK and cleaning. Always replaced things if possible(once broke the glass jug on coffee maker and went out to buy new jug)-why wouldn't you? Maybe I'm a naturally considerate guest or maybe thats the way I was brought up. Age may have something to do with it (we are in our 50's) and younger people are used to having someone run around after them.
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I've had guests wanting to know the actual dimensions of the sofa, complaining because we don't have French TV (not a conscious choice, we've never been able to get a decent picture, despite the aerial and all connections being there), wanting us to provide them with beach towels as well as bath and hand towels (for a party of eight, that comes to 24 towels)....One lot even wanted to know exactly how far from our house they milked the cows...

Of course, we had some lovely guests and the majority left the place clean and tidy...although I still wonder why people feel the need to change around the contents of every drawer and cupboard and rearrange the furniture quite so dramatically. It's like having a paying poltergeist.

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