In 2022, we started the renovation of our summer bungalows, including a new bathroom, a new kitchen and a new floor. A beautiful second life for these accommodations! It’s like new, but without the ecological impact of new. We have also innovated by installing dry toilets. We explain our approach in this article and show you a little behind the scenes.
The ecological benefit of second life
Rather than replacing our oldest accommodation, installed in 2003, we decided to renovate them to give them a new life. We thought long and hard about the best solution, considering the economic and ecological aspects, the time and work needed for each option.
Over time, the bathrooms and kitchens were no longer functional and required regular maintenance. Some of the floors had taken on water. After almost 20 years, it was time to consider their future.
Buying new or renovating our bungalows?
It is true that new buildings have the advantage of being clean, operational and immediately meeting our customers’ expectations. However, it requires major work (dismantling, waste disposal, roadworks, construction, etc.) and a high investment. This is not environmentally neutral. This option also requires more of our time since we do some of the work ourselves. Finally, we would not have been able to invest in 2022, because since the autumn of 2021, the suppliers’ order books are full. So why dismantle habitats that are still viable?
Renovating the bungalows will extend their life span by 10 years. Not bad, isn’t it? In the course of this reflection, we came across AJ Planète Horizon, a specialist in bungalow renovation, located near us in the Gard. This was an important factor in our decision. In addition, the Region supports the renovation through its subsidy criteria.
A few months’ work
So we started a renovation project for the bathrooms, kitchens and floors. Each bungalow took about a week to complete. The renovations were carried out gradually, over a period of several months.
We also changed the mattresses and replaced the blankets with duvets to make them more comfortable. And we took the opportunity to replace the toilets (see below). It’s like new, without the ecological impact of new! In summary, here are some of the benefits of renovation:
- Preserving natural resources, like wood in our case
- Avoiding the extraction of natural resources, such as copper for electricity
- And of course, avoiding the treatment of waste from deconstruction
Renovating our bungalows in pictures
Crédit photo : compte instagram de @ajplanetehorizon pour les travaux – Jessica Bordeau pour les 3 dernières.
Bonus: dry toilets
We took advantage of the renovation of the bungalows to replace all the toilets with dry ones. Indeed, toilets are a great source of water consumption… and drinking water what is more! After having installed some in the restaurant and then in the sanitary facilities, we took the step of deploying them. And it’s always L’écopot who is our supplier.
This action seemed logical to us, in line with our ecological approach. Moreover, this summer’s drought – which is likely to be repeated in the future – reinforces our choice. In addition, with the limestone blocking the flushes, it means less maintenance for us in the middle of summer. And our customers testify to the advantage of a quieter use, we hadn’t thought of that!
For more information on this small ecological revolution, see this article. This innovative approach was also the subject of a report in Capital (a famous French TV show), of which this is an extract: