NOT ALL AIR CONDITIONING FIRMS ARE EQUAL!

The Languedoc summers are hot and during June through August, houses can become uncomfortable even with enhanced ventilation. Winters are sunny but occasionally chilly.

The area is well supplied with companies and single professionals installing air conditioning because here, it is a necessity rather than a luxury.

When it comes to putting “the clim” in a period stone house, looking for the cheapest deal is not the smartest move. Given that units have an established market price (itself determined by the volume of your space and compressor needed), the only difference between estimates is the cost of labour. This is more often than not calculated on the basis of access, the amount of drilling, and the positioning of the units, both exterior and interior.

Believe it or not, a great deal of ingenuity is required in deciding where the outside compressors will be placed (sufficient air space and keeping the façade of your house intact being major considerations), as well as a certain creative and aesthetic vision when it comes to running the goulottes (dropper chutes). The latter can be unsightly, especially in an old restored house.

The amount of dust and general upheaval is often played down by suppliers who want the business.

Given that this is a considerable investment for home owners anyway, skimping on the total amount may prove a disastrous mistake. If insufficiently powered, your brand new air conditioning installation may prove inefficient and therefore useless/expensive to run.

If your installer has taken on several projects, he might do what most Languedoc entrepreneurs do and keep you in the dust and disarray for far longer than it takes to complete the job.

If he is not bothered about referrals or reputation, or has too much work anyway, he might leave a holy mess behind. If you place is newly decorated, this would require a further expenditure post-works and touching-up, not to mention a major cleaning operation.

NOT ALL AIR CONDITIONING FIRMS ARE EQUAL!

Discuss every aspect of the installation prior to signing the “devis” (estimate).  Bear in mind the above, which is written from experience.

We wholeheartedly recommend Pac Energies – Crocelec (https://www.pacenergies.fr) whose level of communication, expertise and professionalism is unmatched in the Languedoc.

They will offer you different options in terms of brands and prices, and discuss positioning of the units, coming up with solutions you may not have considered.

They will leave your home clean and as they found it (with the exception of the creatively positioned and charted “goulottes”).  They will go through the process of naming the rooms and explaining how the system operates as a whole and individually, in each room. They will advise on recuperating and re-using the condensation fluid, perhaps in your garden. When they are done, you might even be sorry to see them go, which is no small recommendation coming from us, a hard-boiled home restorer.

Like all installers, they have a warranty on both units and labour. Their installation does not leak, a frequently occurring problem with shoddy work/unscrupulous firms. Nor does it damage your stone walls if indeed you have a period property.

You have invested time, effort and money into your home – do not skimp on this added bit of comfort that is so important in this part of the world, and that would add value to your property.

Disclaimer: We are not in any way associated with Pac Energies nor have we received any compensation, in kind or monetary, for this review. It is, therefore, 100% impartial.

Languedoc or Occitanie?

 

occitanie logo

The Languedoc-Roussillon has been a well-defined and much-loved region as far back as this writer can recall and beyond. The question on everyone’s lips is now: is it Languedoc or Occitanie?

Languedoc (specifically) borders the Provence to the east and the Midi-Pyrenees and Spain to the west.

The Midi, on the other hand, always refers, somewhat vaguely, to the South-West of France in general. Natives often describe themselves as “gens du Midi” (people of the south).

Gens du Midi

They have a strongly pronounced (and to the uninitiated, often incomprehensible) accent and equally strong culture. Additionally, the light has a special quality about it – a bit like the Alpine air in Switzerland. It’s why Van Gogh painted most of his masterpieces there. Light and sun, as strong as the local flavours, conspired to drive him mad, as they would anyone who’d spend hours on end outdoors in the height of summer.

You might wonder why, then, with all these strong and well-established elements, would the French decide to re-brand the region as “Occitanie”?

Occitanie – the new Provence?

Occitanie is, quite simply, Languedoc and Midi-Pyrenees combined together for administrative purposes. It’s also a marketing device to promote a part of France that is at least as beautiful as Provence.  Provence became fashionable after it was “discovered” by a Brit (Peter Mayle, A Year in Provence).  Occitanie, on the other hand, is a bit of a sleeping giant.

The name refers to the historic use of the Occitan language and its various dialects. In fact, the name stems from the word òc, the equivalent of “yes.” For that reason, the new name has proven popular with people who are fiercely proud of their Occitan roots.

Whether or not tourists and marketers embrace the new name is anyone’s guess. Ours is that it will take time.

Languedoc or Occitanie: whatever you call it, the region’s relaxed charm is here to stay

Everything takes time in the area. The slow tempo is part of its charm and, even though it takes a few days to get into the lull of things and decompress when coming from a major city, the transition is effortless.

It is, of course, smoothed by copious amounts of good local wine, rich but healthy food, fresh air and that remarkable sunshine that makes you feel happy for no particular reason.

So, if stress starts getting the better of you, whether you prefer Languedoc or Occitanie, go take a week’s cure. Your body and spirit will thank you for it, I guarantee.

About the Languedoc

The Languedoc borders the Provence to the east and Spain to the west, and is the most authentic stretch of French Mediterranean coastline. It contains the famous Canal du Midi that connects the Mediterranean sea to the Atlantic. In addition to its many inland villages, chateaux and market towns, the Languedoc is also famed for its regional capital, Carcassonne, which plays host to one of Europe’s oldest surviving medieval castles:

languedoc carcassonne city

 

Languedoc Food & Wine:

The region boasts the largest number of vineyards in the country. Additionally, it produces truffles, oysters, foie gras and countless other gastronomical delights.

Skiing & Tax-Free Shopping:

The Midi, as the locals refer to it, is also home to the Pyrenees range of mountains, with its laid-back ski resorts. The tax-free shopping in Andorra is an attraction for those who love big brands at a discount.

About the Authors:

Languedoc Villas is a family-owned business based in the heart of the Corbieres. Our website serves as a dedicated resource for listing exceptional quality and/or quirky private villas for rent.