In five years, Andre and I want to be living here:

Well, OK, not in this actual house. Because although that would be fairly awesome from our perspective, I’ve got a suspicion that the current inhabitants might not take too kindly to a raggle-taggle band of dishevelled travelers (one English, one Portugeuse/South African, two Jack Russell, plus several vans of furniture) turning up on their beautifully distressed and authentic doorstep demanding to move in, immediately if not sooner.

But we definitely want to be living in France in five years’ time. Ideally in a house that looks just like this one, which I found in a dog-eared edition of Marie-Claire Maison magazine:

For me, this house is the perfect restoration. It’s contemporary, yet the renovation has been carried out in a way that is deeply sympathetic to the original building. How awesome is the combination of the Barcelona chair (I. Want. One. Now) with the original beamed ceilings, the oversized candlesticks, and the original stone walls?

And what about this glorious kitchen? I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a wonderful contemporary conversion in such an old building. And I adore the colour. OK, so I do prefer our own red kitchen for our current Nest (which you can check out here and here), but the neutral gunmetal gray works better in this space, I think:

Check out the dining area – the table is actually made of a door. And then you've got the antique cupboard, and the modern chairs and lamp shade. Sigh. It’s all so effortless:

Finally, here’s the master bedroom – I adore the wooden unit at the end of the bed:

If this were my house, I’d probably hang more art on the walls. But apart from that, I think it’s perfection. What about you? Could you live here? What do you like most about this house? What would you do differently if it were yours?

Now, I think a lot of people dream about moving to other countries. Andre and I actually want to make it happen. Andre is already an expat – he bought a one-way ticket to the UK from South Africa nearly ten years ago and has never looked back. So we reckon that if he can do it once by himself, then we can do it again together.

We love France for so many reasons – the people, the landscape, the culture, the food and drink, the awesome health and education systems, the sunshine! And we figure it’s a win-win – in five years we’ll either by living in France – or we’ll have some good savings, we’ll both have improved our French tremendously, and we’ll have taken some great holidays in the name of research.

This is the area of France we’ve looking at so far – the Luberon area of Provence:

Yes, that’s me! Hello, world! And the hilltop village in the background is Gordes.

We stayed in L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue (another town  in the Luberon) for two weeks earlier this year – it’s known as the Venice of Provence:

Naturally we need to take many more holidays in this region in the name of research :-)

I’m already busily planning our holiday for next summer - I'll post details of the short-list so far shortly! Has anyone else been to the Luberon, or Provence? Any recommendations – for this region, or others in the south?

I’ll post some more details on our Five Year Moving To France Master Plan in the coming weeks! In the meantime, I’d love to hear from anyone else who is actively thinking about moving abroad, or has already moved, or is maybe just happily dreaming about it!