The story of our House

It all started at the Roman Times, as the “Roman (high)Way” crossed the Village, like you can see with the many welsh-roman bridges all around, and also, there is a roman well buried underground at the foot of the Auberge. There were also numéro us sarcophaguses founded during the archaeological excavacations in the years 1992-1996, all around. But,it’s in the years 1789, around the French Revolution, when in every village, the cherches and castles were connected by underground tunnels,that we can certify the existence of the Auberge, because an underground tunnel connected also it’s cellar with the old XIth century church of Olby. On the oldest picture we’ve found of the Auberge (1899), stands à small building of 2 levels with a thatchroof, and it’s only in the years 1950 that the whole has been enlarged as to become a Café- Hotel – Restaurant “La Bonne Auberge”.  The previous owner, Raymond Lassalas, who was the  Uncle of my husband, was also the Maire of Olby. Together with his wife, Marie-Louise, who officiates in the kitchen, while holding a grocery store in the backoffice, they also had a couple of cows in the stable nextdoor (the actual garage).  They had a son, Pierrot Lassalas, who had a transport Cie, and which wife held a hairdresser saloon, also in the Auberge. It was the golden years of “La Bonne Auberge”, so it was already a precursor of the actual “Shopping Centres”! But Raymond Lassalas died, and also did his son, in 1985 and 1987. The Auberge felt slowly asleep until 1990, when it was taken over by the actual owners, Maidara and Paul Roussel, who will make her undergo a shock treatment, by a more than complete renovation of all the buildings and tha outsides!

Story of the Owners : Maidara & Paul Roussel

Maidara (nicknamed Mai) and Paul met in London in 1979. Maidara, third daughter of a 7 children family, and who’s father was Latvian, and  from a british Mother, was living in Belgium, where  her parents met. When she finished School, she started as Air hostess at the Belgian “Sabena” airlines. Paul Roussel was the fifth of an 8 children family. His parents were Millers and living at the Watermill of Olby. Later, he became expatriate and Executive of a leather factory in Ivory Coast. In 1980, Mai resigned her job and left for Africa, to join him. They have a daughter, Natacha, and even now, a sweet little gran’daughter, Sasha! Until 1989, Paul continues at the leather factory, while Maidara worked for the Belgian Embassy in Abidjan, as Secretary for Cooperation, and in the same time, for other and different companies in début collection. In 1989, the leather factory was taken over by a foreign company, and we decided so, to return to France, but also because the économie situation in Ivory Coast augured no good. The continuation of the events will have agreed with us! Here we are thus, catapulted in Olby, in June 1989, without jobs nor home! The Family sheltered us during one year, Natacha went to the village School, where her father used to go, Paul found another executive job in a famous leather factory, “Le Tanneur”, in Bort-les-Orgues, and then even worked for Louis Vuitton and Hermès. Mai began with a training course in the UIT, as to perfect her knowledge regarding “Management & Development of the SMI-SME”, and also, as to study the project of resumption of “The Auberge of Olby”. That’s how was taken over this good old Inn, which began not to be able any more to hide its dilapidation. everything has been renewed, from the Cellar to the Roof, under which we even created our new home nest, entirely designed by ourselves. Maidara started the run of the Bar-Restaurant in 1990, and developed it with Catering, takeaways, fine grocery store,…, until July 2010, when, following a burnout, she decided to re-transform everything by reducing the capacity of the Restaurant, as to create a furnished appartment in the former old Dining Room. A “B&B’s” would also be created on the first floor, where in the old Times, was a row of 11 hotel rooms, with their basins and pitchers of water, and also one WC at the end of the corridor!  Meanwhile, Paul retiréd in 1999…to start up again, with renewed vigor his relentlessness in work, and the perpetual renovation of the house. It was only in the year 2009 that we started the complète renovation of this first floor, which had remained neglected for almost 20 years, because it was necessary to put the priorities on the ground floor level, wher was the activity of Mai, and also on the former Attic, that became their home. So, on this 1st level, we began by bringing down some closins, and created what became the Lounge, and the “French style” ceiling of which is completely made by Paul, as all the rest moreover! Meanwhile, Mai did all the backoffice work, as the plans & different files to start all this again, but also the paintings of the panellings and walls. She also specialized into the polished concrete, and you can see all of her creation, like the Bar desk and tables of the Dining Room , the bedheads, sideboards of the bathrooms, and even some paintings of it. All the Most important everything, as the basic structures, the varions walls and different ceilings through out the house, even the girdle of the elevator which leaves from the cellar to the roof, as well as the vertical & horizontal insolation, the parquet floors, the faiences of showers,…., and still more, it is Paul who made it all by himself, down from his 73 years old!

After all these years of renovation, we are now so happy to finally open our doors to Visitors, and to warmly welcome you in our Home, hoping that you will feel yourselves like in a cocoon, and that you will come back very often, as to visit us again & again!