Before coming to Australia
Cecile grew up and studied translation and languages in France. After working in England, Spain, Slovakia and Fiji as a French Translator and Language Trainer in international aid and sustainable development, it was time to settle somewhere for a while. Australia, not as developed and populated as Europe, with a strong economy and the most beautiful light was her next destination.
It was love at the first sight with Maryborough: a township with a centre and a heart, the heritage and culture, the friendly people, the small community atmosphere she was so fond of in Fiji. The Fraser Coast is also the best latitude weather wise.
For the love of Queenslander homes
Cecile rented several Queenslanders before buying 13 Treasure St. The house needed a lot of work, had to be completely gutted and couldn’t be lived in; it took a couple of years to renovate it with a full time job. When 15 Treasure St (future Eco Queenslander) was put on the market for sale, the project of a sustainable holiday home immediately came to mind and she bought it. Hosting people is something that was always done in Cecile’s family and being able to offer some independence to guests with a stand-alone house whilst living next door in case they would need anything was just perfect. Even though it had been looked after better than 13 Treasure St, 15 Treasure St needed big works such as reroofing and restumping. Renovating the two houses at the same time was hell for Cécile who would never do this again...
As she met people and tradesmen in town, she learnt that 13 & 15 Treasure St were ‘sister homes’; they were built at the same time in 1941 and by the same builder. On several occasions, they were owned by people who were best friends. The little gate between the two properties which was installed before our time attests of that connection.
Sustainable Holiday Home Project
The Fraser Coast is home to the Great Sandy Biosphere and our small economy relies on tourists who are attracted by this wonder. For Eco Queenslander to be in harmony with its environment and meet the needs of more environmentally conscious travellers looking at offsetting their travel miles, it had to be an environmentally friendly operation. From the planning phase to the renovation, retrofitting with eco-friendly features, promoting, letting and maintenance phases, Eco Queenslander observed very strict and select environmental practices. Visit our Sustainable Tourism page for more information about Eco Queenslander's eco features.Sustainable tourism is the future of tourism.
Operating Eco Queenslander as a holiday home
Welcoming and meeting people from all around Australia and all around the world is what Cécile likes best about Eco Queenslander. Cécile teaches French to adult students in town during evening classes (more than300 students over the last six years) and her students are keen to meet the French families who stay at Eco Queenslander to practice their French and exchange ideas about the two cultures. For the French, it's a great opportunity to meet with Australians and to get an insight into the Australian culture, especially those who are not very comfortable in English.
Cecile loves the region she lives in and is keen to share her local knowledge and best addresses with her Eco Queenslander’s guests. When something interesting comes out of Cecile’s kitchen (homemade jam, cakes, cheese, etc.), she likes to make her guests try some. She is keen to offer an experience that is in tune with the yester years’ experience that Maryborough offers, a time when people used to care for each other, a cocoon away from globalisation that tends to unfortunately make all hotel rooms look the same, a personalised experience to be remembered. She thinks that this is what hospitality is all about and there is nothing that makes us happier than happy guests at Eco Queenslander.