The full version of this article originally appeared in the March/April issue of the My French Country Home Magazine. To subscribe and read the article, click HERE. By Pippa Huet
Laurence du Tilly is a women with an eye. An eye for style, presentation and authentic home living.
Swapping her Parisian life in advertising and food styling for a return to her native town of Caen, Normandy, Laurence turned to a different kind of life: hosting.
In the heart of Caen’s Old Town, near place Saint-Sauveur, Chez Laurence du Tilly is a 19th century hôtel particulier renovated into three private apartments. Each with their own kitchen, bathroom, dining and seating area, Chez Laurence mixes the privacy of renting with the hotel-like perks of delicious food, luxurious linens, log-fire kits and private yoga sessions or Ayurvedic massages.
The cliché “make yourself at home” is, at the best of times, overused; at the worst, an casual offer of complete autonomy. Laurence welcomes guests into her vision of home, each apartment can fit up to 4 people making it ideal for families as well as couples and individuals.
Eclectic design, with a personal touch
Each apartment is attentively decorated, featuring a mixture of designs from different periods that keep things cozy rather than contemporary. Pendant lighting from Helsinki, rotin fixtures from China, wooden tribal figurines and animal skulls from Africa. Each room is an express world tour and rife with personal touches: framed photos, family heirlooms, travel souvenirs. “I decorated to please myself first. Everything is here because I love it. Sometimes I swap pieces out of my own home and virtually everything has a story or memory behind it.”
Beyond Laurence’s love for interior design, this was the goal for the whole project. To offer a temporary home, which guests could make their own – if only for a while.
Images by Franck Schmitt