Armel Le Cléac'h
Vincent Curutchet / Banque Populaire
Head to Brittany for an interview at Armel Le Cléac'h. After the feat of his solo tour of the world on Banque Populaire VIII, the browser appreciates the calm of his home found among the trees.
It was after the media turmoil and his family holidays that we had planned to meet Armel Le Cléac'h on his Breton lands. He and his wife Aurélie are passionate about design. They read the decoration press and when they travel in France or abroad, they like to discover new hotels. Ten years ago, they realized their passion by building their homes. Their dream of an ecological habitat could not be fully answered but during their expansion work, they were able to make an extension in eco-responsible wood. Private visit.
Since your return, what is your greatest happiness?
Armel Le Cléac'h: After a nonstop world tour in 74 days and the media marathon that followed, I admit that I enjoy the calm of my interior. The whole body is very upset by noise and stress.
Arrival of Armel Le Cléac'h, skipper Banque Populaire VIII, winner of the Vendée Globe in 74d 3h 35min 46sec, in Les Sables d'Olonne, France, January 19th 2017
Jean Marie Liot / DPPI / Popular Bank
It is therefore the silence and calm of the countryside that I appreciate the most. I also discover with pleasure all the changes of decoration that my wife made during my absence.
To see> Holiday homes to relax
Do you have decorative elements that evoke the sea?
Armel Le Cléac'h: I have kept in my office some pictures of race arrivals and some of newspapers. But nothing reminds me of my activity except for a very nice series of photos of an Italian magazine for which I had posed. We made enlargements for the show. A small evocation of the sea without being in the demonstrative!
Your house overlooks the sea?
Armel Le Cléac'h: No I made the choice to be cut off from the atmosphere of the boat and to be green! I live in the countryside in a small village.
You had in mind an ideal house?
Armel Le Cléac'h: Initially, we had a crush on the field. Then we called on an architect. Ten years ago, we had decided ideas in terms of development, surface: we wanted to build a wooden house. Alas, seeing the quotes, it was necessary to make concessions on the materials and privilege the surface with a large living room and a high ceiling. And even if in Brittany the sun is rare, we wanted a terrace.
What is the surface?
Armel Le Cléac'h: We initially had a surface area of 120 m2 but three years ago, we expanded it so that the children had their space. The extension allowed to make two rooms and a bathroom: the set is separated by a sliding door which gives on the room to live. We now have 170 m2 but we are already imagining a new place of life, less cut off from the world and closer to their school.
How did you do this enlargement?
Armel Le Cléac'h: This project was not simple because we had a design requirement. An architect from Quimper, Patrice Andrin, was hired. He managed to find harmony between inside and outside. It had to break partitions and completely redo the kitchen and living room. Thus the two former rooms on the ground floor have been transformed into a guest room, a dressing room and a sewing room.
Is this extension more eco-friendly?
Armel Le Cléac'h: Yes it is made of wood with eco-friendly materials - use of cellulose and hemp for insulation - and therefore in line with our philosophy. In ten years, things have changed in terms of costs and a new generation of artisans has been formed.
Your favorite room?
Armel Le Cléac'h: The large living space that combines the kitchen, the living room and the living room. Everything is open with a central island. We added a stove that gives a very warm side.
Your furniture: rather modern, ultra design, family, pitcher?
Armel Le Cléac'h: There is design furniture but my wife also loves the vintage side. It is she who chines because I do not necessarily have the time. She found lamps, a shelf, a chair and some small decorative elements.
The last useful or futile purchase?
Armel Le Cléac'h: A big carpet that Aurelie brought back from Morocco.
The most unusual or unexpected that can be discovered at home?
Armel Le Cléac'h: Since we modified the interior, we enter the large living room. It is this immense volume that pleases a lot. The peculiarity is that the three spaces are well defined by different materials on the ground. In the dining room, there is a solid wood floor; for the living room, large gray matte tiles with the Moroccan carpet and in the kitchen, we had a black lacquer laid. It's a little fragile but it gives a nice side.
Your favorite color in your home?
Armel Le Cléac'h: The walls and ceilings are white: we wanted it to be very bright. There is black with the door frames, the stove and the lacquered floor of the kitchen. The only keys of color are brought by the cushions of the sofa and the carpet.
The kitchen, rather open or closed?
Armel Le Cléac'h: Open with the large central island that allows us both to cook and take all our meals. Our friends love it.
A dish unexpectedly on the go for your friends? Your specialty?
Armel Le Cléac'h: Since my return from the Vendée Globe, I have more time. I am therefore often in the kitchen; I like cooking for children. Last night, on the menu, I prepared fresh fish with a sauce and rice. And for this afternoon, there will be homemade burgers!
And the TV, which room?
Armel Le Cléac'h: The living room ! We look at it very little.
Do you live with music or rather in silence?
Armel Le Cléac'h: There is always a musical background of varieties; most often, we are on the frequency of Radio Nova.
Curtains, doors, shutters? What does it inspire you?
ATrmel Le Cléac'h: In the living room, there are no curtains or blinds: everything is open. There are large windows in three windows. This recovers all the light. In summer, the house gets bigger with the terrace!
What is on your bedside table?
Armel Le Cléac'h: The book I started during the holidays: "Mum is wrong" Michel Bussi.
What happened to Percy, the stuffed penguin you gave the kids and Aurélie, the mascot who kept you company?
Armel Le Cléac'h: Percy is in the extension. I meet him from time to time! The children fight for it and they share it each night, in turn.
"Percy, the stuffed penguin donated by the kids and Aurélie before I leave ..."
Armel Le Cléac'h
The famous mascot Percy has the same date of birth as Armel!
Armel Le Cléac'h
What place do books have at home?
Armel Le Cléac'h: I am not a great reader but we have a lot of books. We are just missing a library to store all the beautiful books, many of which are on the sea and sailing. A project for the future because currently, all books are scattered in small cabinets!
Are you green plants, flowers, balcony, terrace, garden?
Armel Le Cléac'h: No because you have everything you need outside. Our land located next to a large wood is very wooded. We even had to remove pine trees for safety reasons in the event of a storm; we kept an oak tree, a chestnut tree, a little fir tree ...! We built a cabin for children and there is even a vegetable garden. A landscaper added plant beds. And to give a contemporary side, we installed large stone slabs in the spirit of Japanese steps!
Your addresses or favorite brands for the home (shopping, decoration, florist, etc.)?
Armel Le Cléac'h: This is the domain of my wife Aurélie.