My husband and our sons first came to Les Gets for a mountain bike holiday some 15 years ago; they had a wonderful time and returned year after year.In 2005 we bought our first apartment in Les Gets – Bayeux – a large 4 bedroom apartment – the top floor of the Hastings Chalet. This was run as a Residence de Tourisme (self catering with hotel services). Two years later, the owner of the management company decided to move to Canada for family reasons. This coincided with our youngest daughter going to university. I was keen to take on a new project and so decided to take over the running of Chalets1066 in 2008.The first year of trading was, quite openly, a baptism of fire – the recession started just a few months after I took on the business, I was expecting a hard learning curve, but not the challenges of the recession at the same time.The solution to the recession was hard work, engaging help and support from all family members and friends, and expansion.
The business is now more than treble its original size and the expansion is continuing. We are focussing on delivering a good quality of service at a fair price, we believe our unique value proposition is that we offer self catering holidays with optional services you normally only get with a fully catered chalet holiday. With the recession this has proved highly attractive, particularly to those who previously had a catered chalet ski holiday and are now looking to reduce costs. I now have an excellent team. Key members include:
- Morven – my younger son's partner - She is a real bundle of energy. Morven is responsible for all operations; for example, on Saturdays in the ski season she can be managing a team of as many as 10 cleaners, all starting at 7am. Cleanliness is a very important part of what we offer our clients. Morven's skills are complementary to mine and of great value.
- Suzi - she is working with us on reservations. Suzi has some 8 years experience in running a catered chalet in Les Gets, she lives locally ( calls to her are re-direced at no cost to you) and she is a great wealth of knowledge on the village.
- Ben – my younger son – .he is training to be a ski instructor in France, he is now BASI Level 3 qualified - so can teach in Switzerland - he is also helping out with operations. He has spent the whole of the summer in Les Gets (apart from two weeks when he was in Les deux Alps – race training. Ben spent five and a half years in the Royal Marines and it is a great relief that he is no longer going out to Afghanistan. The picture opposite is of Ben clearing snow from the roof of Chalet Hastings when the show got too deep for the insurance requirements.
- My husband – Mark – he works weekends and evenings on many areas, including marketing, new agreements, the online reservations system, the web site and accounts. Mark has over three decades of experience in Business Development, Management Consultancy and IT and his ability to see the big picture complements my focus on individual customer requirements. Mark has a 'day job' with one of the major IT companies, he has a BSc(Hons) in electronic engineering from Imperial and has also completed many business courses.
- My elder son Chris has a Post Doctoral Post at Warwick Univeristy, he also sits on the Boards of a number of Government bodies advising on: codes of practice, rules of engagement and new laws. He has published a number of academic papers, he is regularly travelling around the world speaking at conferences attended by Government Advisors, even Prime Ministers, in his spare time he helps with business strategy and accounts.
- Ian Gibbons - he has worked with Mark on the web site and reservations system for some 6 years.
- For the ski season, we are recruiting Chalet staff at the moment, we have many outstanding applicants – it will have hard making the selection.
- We also have a great team locally in Les Gets, carpenters, builders, plumbers, we have an excellent relationship with the bakery,
We love Les Gets; it is a beautiful area all year round. For us, this is a long term plan and we are certainly not doing this for short term monetary reasons!
We are established as a French Business: SARL Vacances aux Chavannes,
Siret Number:- 504 384 090 00016
VAT Number is FR06 504 384 090