Alastair Sawdays, le célèbre guide touristique Anglosaxon, très engagé, a publié sa sélection 2022 de "Special Places to stay écoresponsables" dans toute l'Europe.
Alastair Sawdays a une démarche de sélection rigoureuse et un engagement exemplaire en matière de RSE valorisée par la certification B Coporation. Pour en savoir plus
Chers propriétaires, Vous trouverez ci-dessous une lettre de notre fondateur Alastair Sawday. Nous l’avons laissée dans sa langue originale anglaise pour préserver sa plume et parce que son style idiomatique d’écriture est quasiment impossible à traduire ! Comme toujours, si vous souhaitez discuter de quoi que ce soit, veuillez nous téléphoner. Avec nos vœux les plus sincères,
l’Equipe Sawday’s 03/02/2022
Dear Olivia, It’s been a while since I’ve been in touch. I am still here, still tilting at windmills and as impassioned as ever about beauty, generosity, kindnesses to strangers and individuality….in other words all the qualities that remain part of the Sawday’s company personality. I am involved these days only on the Board and as the Chair of the Sawday (Charitable Eco) Trust, so I miss my contact with the delightful Sawday’s owners.
However, I was boosted by meeting some of you in September when I pedalled my bike around Normandy and then went on by train to the Loire. I ate a dinner fit for kings in a B&B run by an ex-British-army chef (can you imagine it?) and his wife, slept in a ravishingly beautiful Loire barn, and warbled ‘60s rock music alongside my host as we careered noisily along country roads in his reproduction antique car. His Sri-Lankan grandchildren then entertained me before supper with a lecture on their dance traditions. I could happily spend my days in this way. Perhaps I should?
I feel as strongly as I ever did that most of us need to retreat from the gradual corporatisation of our world; supporting people doing their own thing is what Sawday’s still does so well. The spirit, the soul, of Sawday’s is alive and buzzing despite all the viruses that have been thrown at us. The last years have been hellish for many of you, and sublimely relaxing for others, but it is wonderful to know that you are still there – bravely sailing into the wind.
There are some interesting trends in travel now, as you know. Responsibility to the environment is now second nature to most of you and we are flying that flag con vigore. (Did you read of the Airbus that landed near the South Pole? Oh that it had been stranded there as a monument to Man’s Folly!) There are shifts in behaviour that may lead to slower and longer holidays for many, less flying and more lingering over conversation. If so, we are ready and I know you are too.
It has been satisfying to watch Sawday’s put its roots ever deeper into the earth, with a renewed emphasis on Mother Nature, wildness and local food. But you have always been an essential part of this, providing the ideas and the dynamism. Some of you have revealed inspiring commitment and originality, enabling us to stand out from the crowd. We simply cannot be dull with you at our centre (such as the owner who recently wrote mainly to praise his chickens and the fun of having a poet to stay). We, in our turn, are emerging from the Covid years with renewed gusto: boosting our ‘difference’ from run-of-the-mill companies, returning to those vital in person inspections and standing by our founding roots.
I am often asked what my hopes are for future travel. I love reading old travel books with their reminders of what we have lost and how hardy travellers had to be. Charles Dickens travelled back and forth to France about 60 times in three years! (But he did have a mistress in Paris.) So, I hope that we re-learn to value beautiful buildings and places, cultures and culture unfamiliar to us; and to take more time over it all, shake off our modern coyness about talking to strangers.
Hopes, of course, are not predictions. As a species we learn our lessons with agonising slowness, and often too late. Will we join our children in longing for, and battling for, a fairer and more aware world? I hope so – please encourage us. And please come to see us if you are ever in or near Bristol; we will try to see more of you now that we can.
I feel positive about what this year brings for travel and the warm human connections that will be enjoyed.
With my warmest wishes,
Founder of Sawday's