After having lived in the Antwerp region for over 50 years, we longed for a quieter and greener environment. The children were on the verge of leaving the parental home, so it was time for us to make new plans.
In July 2010 we became the proud owners of this long front farmstead from the late 19thcentury. Renovations were needed, but this was a house with a soul. We wanted to make it lighter and airier without sacrificing any mod cons yet taking our ecological views into account. Some of the typical aspects would have to be restored. After a thorough renovation it would be our new home, and we would still have ample space for receiving guests.
We wanted a B&B with character. We came up with a name during an improvised picnic in the newly laid out garden. Candlelight, a BBQ, creative friends and some booze formed the ideal combination for thinking up a name! It had to start with the letter A and it had to be a playful name. So we opted for ‘Artikel 14’ or ‘Art.14’ in short. 14 is our house number, which made the combination fairly easy.
The B&B would be ready by June 2014. At least, that is what we thought.
But things turned out differently! We plunged into a saffron story (feel free to read about our adventures on belgischesaffraan.be) and the B&B was pushed to the background.
Meanwhile “the Belgian Saffron farm” became known abroad and we have received several awards already. Thanks to the ‘HIB’ (Handmade in Belgium) we even supplied our product to the Royal Family on two different occasions! In other words, we hardly had the time to focus on the interior and the statutory provisions with which a B&B must comply.
When we were asked to participate in the TV programme ‘Met Vier in Bed’ (VTM), we knew that we would have a tight work schedule and deadline. The B&B had to be ready! That is why we are extremely pleased and proud that we are able to receive guests today.
Our farmstead is somewhat tucked away, which is why people may have difficulty finding us. But the other side of the picture is that we have all the peace and quiet that we need. In the summer months you are woken by bird song. Or by Clément, the farm’s rooster!
Stan, our dog (an older medium-sized schnauzer) who leads a real dog’s life, guards the B&B.
Since saffron is one of our main activities, you can also find this theme in our B&B. We can offer our guests a package of their choice or a saffron cooking workshop.
You will definitely notice the environmentally friendly aspect in and around our B&B. Our premises are energy neutral thanks to photovoltaic solar panels, a geothermal heat pump and a solar-powered water heater. Fresh (bio) breads are baked in the spacious open-plan kitchen with AGA stove. Eggs come from our Campine chickens, and we grow bio vegetables and fruit in our own vegetable garden. In addition, we work with local (bio) farmers and producers. For here, in the Kempen region, we enjoy a wide range of authentic and delicious products. Our wines come from Limburg winegrowers who guarantee real quality wines.
It will be our pleasure to give you addresses of chefs cooking with our saffron. That way you will have the chance to enjoy top level dishes!
Marc & Linda