What is Le Flamant Rouge?

Maria, owner Le Flamant Rouge

Maria, owner Le Flamant Rouge

Interview with Maria Hansson, owner Le Flamant Rouge By Kicki Möller, journalist   Le Flamant Rouge has become a well known guesthouse and many visitors return. ”It´s something special with this house” is a comment that appears more than once in the guestbook in the dining room. What do they mean? Well, I suppose it´s the ”make yourself at home- feeling”. That you are part of the house and not only a guest. In this house you live, not only stay. For example, if you want to paint you can borrow an easel and artists´ colours and bring it into your room. Or you might want to make dinner for everyone in the house, or invite a local to the house and practice your French. We love initiatives like that and we always say ”yes, we´ll arrange that”. Everything can be arranged.
My keywords are creativity, optimism and individual freedom.
And I think it´s a good sign that many guests that have been here for longer stays leave a box with their private belongings in the house because they know they will come back. In the attic I now have one box marked with ”Anna”, and one box belonging to ”Hanna” and another to ”Isak” and to ”Joel”…   It´s easy to see that you want to encourage creativity. So, what if you come here with great energy to create but do not really know where to start or how to overcome your weak creative selfconfidence…what are you supposed to do then, according to you? I try to be open to different needs. I can say, for example, ” We have equipment to paint in the attic, do you want me to put it in your room?” without being to pushy. I encourage the guests to be bold. You don´t need to be a writer to write a short novel about the cat in the alley, you don´t need to be an artist to create a painting while you are here…you just need the right atmosphere and I hope that here´s where you´ll find that. Tell me what it looks like when the house is used the way you want it to be. Well, that´s when it´s lively in the kitchen. I love it when the guests discover the region, making excursions in the surroundings and buy primary products of local producers and then come home and start experimenting in the kitchen. Especially when many guests make dinner together and set the table outside in the alley at the backyard and eat all together. At the same time we certainly don´t demand creativity or sociability of you when you stay here. Of course you are very welcome to peace and quiet when you are here. If you want to sleep, read your book or just drink coffee at the little square in the village, you do that.
I think it´s important to let everyone have their private sphere and that you sleep well at night when you stay here.
  The house has three floors and is very beautiful - where is your own favorite corner in the house? Hm, let me think. Well, It´s actually not a physical place, it´s more like a favourite moment. When I hear that guests are gathering in the kitchen and notice that they feel free to use the entire house…then I am at my best. And that often happens when I sit in the alley in the backyard and feel connected to everything by the open window. So my favorite moment comes with a favorite place you could say - the calm backyard.   And if you do not speak French, is it still possible to be here and get to know the locals? In the house everybody speaks English and often Swedish. If you want to get to know the locals they are often welcoming even though their English is not always the best. Actually, we have a couple in the village that have been giving private French lessons. It´s an artist couple that used to live in this house before I bought it. They were teaching me when I moved here, and some guests that have stayed a bit longer have also been received lessons from them.   Now you are about to open Le Flamant Rouge for the season 2015 - is there any news for the new season?
Le Flamant Rouge evening

Le Flamant Rouge evening

Yes, this year we have an offer for those who want to stay a bit longer, since we think the concept fits longer stays. Another new thing that I like is a board in the kitchen where you can write if you want to cook for everybody in the house. So if you know you are cooking and it will be enough for more, you can invite other guests.
"Tonight I will cook and if you want to join the dinner just sign up here”
And as a dinner guest you'll pay a very reasonable amount. I hope and think that this will result in even more convivial gatherings and interesting meetings at Le Flamant Rouge!