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Our Team

Michelle Brooks, Head Chef

From an early age, Michelle has had a passion and aptitude for the world of cookery. 

Coming from an Italian background and growing up with a love of good food and produce instilled in her, she grew up working working in her family’s third generation restaurants and hotels. 

So, it was only natural that – after a brief period of working in financial services in the City – she returned to her roots and love of cooking, where she is most at home. 

Michelle cooks colourful, delicious, healthy dishes using local produce and fresh ingredients.

Michelle Brooks, Head Chef

Rob Brooks, House and Activities Manager

Rob started off his career working in financial services in the City, but he’s always been a hands on, practical person. After several years of commuting, Rob re-trained and set up his own successful building company in the UK; constructing and renovating Grade listed homes and new builds. 

In 2009, he and his wife Michelle (our Head Chef) moved permanently to France. Rob has helped to design, but also solely construct both of our Longeville sur Mer villas. 

Rob has always been a water sports fanatic, and has windsurfed and surfed from a young age. Nutrition, gym and tennis being a close second in his interests!

Rob, along with Michelle have successfully been managing and running our villas in Longeville sur Mer for the past 7 years.

Rob Brooks, House and Activities Manager

Deborah, Vinyasa Yoga Flow Teacher

Deborah teaches Yoga classes in Vendée. After 22 years living in Paris working for big companies, she decided to move to the ocean side for its tranquillity and peaceful atmosphere. 

For Deborah, Yoga is a whole philosophy and way of life – her passion. In each class, she teaches breathing techniques, relaxation, asanas or postures, and relaxation. 

“Take one hour to reconnect to yourself and feel positively energised. See you on the mat!”

Deborah, Vinyasa Yoga Flow Teacher

Mikael, Surf Instructor

Mikael has been teaching people how to surf for several years. 

Surfing is his passion, and it gives him a kick to share it through his work. 

The spots that are available in Vendee are perfect to learn in. Sometimes the waves are small and easier to master, whilst sometimes they can be a little more demanding – but all the time, fun. 

“Surf is a great way to discover the coast from another point of view. When you sit on your board, watching the sunset on the coast, everything looks different.”

Mikael, Surf Instructor

Lesley, Masseuse and Reflexologist

Practising as a nurse in Oxford for many years, Lesley soon realised that there was a vital place for holistic therapies alongside medical treatment. Even more so, in preventing health problems.

She embarked on a journey to work as a holistic therapist, and qualified as a masseuse back in the 1990s. Lesley also gained a qualification to practice Reiki at this time.

In 2004, she moved to France with family, and continued nursing and therapy work. In 2011, Lesley became a qualified reflexologist, having undertaken a two-year reflexology course which included Chinese medicine at l’école de réflexologie à Montaigu. She then opened a clinic, offering massage, reflexology and Reiki. 

“It always ceases to amaze me how powerful these therapies can be and their wonderful effects they can have.”

Lesley, Masseuse and Reflexologist

Victoria Thorne, Fitness Instructor

Victoria is a bilingual fitness instructor who has been helping people to improve their
fitness, keep motivated and achieve their goals for the past 24 years.

She started out in the UK teaching all types of group classes, and working as a personal
trainer. She quickly advanced to being a course director and assessor for Fitness Wales; running courses and masterclasses all over the country, helping other fitness instructors develop their skills.

She made the move to France 15 years ago, and currently keeps busy working at a large gym in
the south Vendée, as well as teaching private classes in the area.

Victoria believes that there is a class/activity/sport out there for everyone. Her passion for fitness is infectious, and she is best-known for her ability to make exercise fun – in fact, she is known for being a bit of a ‘Zumba queen’!

Victoria Thorne

Nancy Lacoint, Beautician

Nancy is a fully-qualified beauty therapist. 

Treatment quality and customer care are of the utmost importance to Nancy, and she prides herself in providing a personal, yet professional service. She can offer a variety of facials, as well as manicures and pedicures.

“My goal is for you to enjoy your experience and to leave feeling completely refreshed and revitalised!”

Nancy Lacoint

+44 7740 378 351

Manager: +33 6 1258 0695

For information on the Vendee try the following links

www.the-vendee.co.uk  [English Guide to the Vendée]

www.vendee-tourisme.com [French Tourist Board]

 

For information on Longeville sur Mer:

www.longevillesurmer.com

New Water Park, 15 mins drive from the house.

www.oglisspark.fr