big picture Provides new Writers' retreat centre in the Bordeaux vineyards
The Big Picture office has moved to Caussarieu (right), a property with acres of gardens, forest, nature reserve and river-frontage outside Sauternes, in the Bordeaux vineyard region. Hoffman will provide a writers' retreat centre there from early 2019. Part of the land is a nature reserve that's being Rewilded, in partnership with the French Environment Agency. Rates will be reasonable: it's not a for-profit venture.
Have a glance below at the grounds, main house, separate villa, 3-bedroom timber chalet by the pool and little artist studios. Options will range from self-catering groups of up to 6, to individuals who come alone to write, rest, think, meditate, chill out, make art - whatever you do. Big Picture collaborators will come for free to recharge their batteries and dialogue about ongoing projects. Table d'Hote - sociable evening meals of French cuisine - will be available poolside at affordable rates.
Official walking and cycling trails stretch from the property for miles into the forest. The beach on the right is 25 minutes away. Venues in the last four photos below (like the world-famous Chateau Yquem, right) are 5 to 15 minutes away. All other photos are of the property. The art-works (plus a gallery of others on display there) have been gifted by Bordeaux artist Marie-Anne Bernaulte, who painted there for three decades before selling the property to the Hoffmans.
The property has been called Caussarieu for centuries. In the ancient Occitan language still spoken by elderly locals, it means Bridge over the River. It's a place for recharging one's batteries, to help tackle the problems society is facing in the time ahead.