Once upon a time, there lived Mme Carolina Kayser, the beloved wife of a rich brewer in Alsace.
A native of the South of France, Mme Kayser grew homesick for her birthplace and wanted to introduce her 14-year-old daughter, Marie Emma, to the region. So she persuaded her husband to move south to France’s wine-making country. They set up house in a fashionable town that was the talk of late 19th century Paris: Béziers.
When the Kayser family arrived in 1892, they bought a large parcel of land on the edge of Béziers, complete with its own water source. Mr Kayser, the scion of a brewing family, was convinced that the dynamic wine-producing region in which he now lived could also produce beer. So he built a brewery at no. 65 avenue du 22 Août, with the family’s house alongside, at no. 65 bis. The road opposite soon became known as ‘rue de la Brasserie’ (Brewery Road) and still bears that name, even though the brewery is long gone.
The whole enterprise was a great success. The Kayser family became a key part of everyday life in and around Béziers, enjoyed a high standard of living, and entertained lavishly.
They built their house using the most handsome materials. The perfectly preserved interior layout of the house bears witness to their comfortable middle-class lifestyle. On the ground floor, two magnificent sitting rooms, and a boudoir into which Mme Kayser could withdraw while her husband received his hunting friends in the hunting room. Three luxurious suites on the first floor, one for each member of the family. The doors still bear their initials: M and E for Marie Emma, F for Frédéric, and C for Carolina. And on the second floor, five servants’ bedrooms. The butler and his wife (the governess) had the largest room with double windows. The other servants had to content themselves with much smaller rooms and bull’s-eye windows.
Sadly, however, the family’s happiness was short lived. Mme Kayser died in 1913, and her husband died of grief the following year.
Whether by chance or destiny, new life was breathed into this outstandingly beautiful house exactly 100 years later, waking it from a long sleep.
The challenge we set ourselves was an ambitious one: to preserve and respect the soul of the house, while ensuring our guests would benefit from all the comforts and technological advances of the 21st century. Gifted local artisans, proud of their skills and their region, joined us in taking up the challenge.
All that’s left now is for you to discover the Hôtel Particulier for yourself. Drop in for a cup of tea, or come and stay the night.
We look forward to welcoming you!
(And just in case you were wondering: the servants’ rooms have been transformed, the attics have been converted, and the sitting rooms are still sitting rooms today.)
The Hôtel Particulier team
Small details make the great Hotels !