Where the start of the summer season in Zermatt as been put on hold, bookings here are slowly starting to trickle in. While the rain keeps my sister confined to the house, we owe the careful switch from little to a little more mainly to the sun. Forget the summer solstice. The longest day of the year. Or the bonfires of Saint John. With the opening of the swimming…

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In search of…

It is (in my opinion) only normal that we, as starting entrepreneurs, are still searching. Sometimes literally, but more often figuratively. For example: what do you do if guests want to have a late check-out because of the nice weather or a late lunch reservation? At times when the room has not already been rented, we do not really mind. It only becomes difficult…

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I wake up startled. Surprised, I reach for the telephone that is next to me, already ringing. What time is it? Eight o’clock. Time to get up anyway. While I’m answering, I try to sound as awake as possible. “This is Michelle.” A neighbor with another Bed and Breakfast, who’s on the other end of the line, immediately apologizes for the early hour. “I made a mistake!” she exclaims.

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The perfect score?

A study conducted by the Spiegel Research Center shows that ratings between 4.2 and 4.5 inspire the most trust. According to this study, mistakes happen in every company and every industry, and stressing over a single bad review or striving for an unsustainable perfect score is a waste of time. According to them, more important than the company’s score…

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Limited vocabulary

Now that we have put the changeable weather behind us and my sisters are still here for a few weeks before they have to go back to Switzerland again, it is high time to prepare the garden for summer. With the little money we have left from the winter season in Switzerland, we take stock. What do we really need and what can wait? A new coffee maker? The suitcase racks…

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One day…

I was eighteen when I went abroad by myself for the first time. I had just completed high school and my mother, who also comes from a family that loves to travel, encouraged my sisters and me to travel for a year before we would start college. That I got (somewhat) fluent in English, and not Spanish, after an eight-week language course in Barcelona, didn’t matter.

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Impossible to overestimate

Vall de Gallinera, the municipality to which Benialí belongs, has approximately 585 inhabitants spread out over eight villages. With a percentage of 52%, there are slightly more men living here than women. At 58%, the age category 18-64 years is the largest, whereat the average age is 52 years. As in the rest of the province of Alicante (78%)…

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“How exactly did you end up here?” It is a question we are asked regularly. By both the Dutch and the Spanish. Justifiably. Because Vall de Gallinera does not yet enjoy the fame it deserves. It’s a shame. Because when we first visited Benialí (the village we now lovingly call home) a few years ago, we were immediately sold. Not much later, our dream house was too. To us, that is.

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