AN ECOTOURISM PROJECTA PROJECT THAT IS BOTH FUN AND EDUCATIONAL
In the heart of an unspoiled nature, visitors can discover a yet unknown biodiversity. Sustainable ecotourism begins with a reminder of the importance of Nature in our daily lives. This is why we are doing everything we can to allow the wild to find its place in a dedicated sanctuary. And we are raising awareness among young and old, in a fun and educational way, through a multitude of activities.
Because the development of responsible tourism in France involves pioneering projects, the Animal Reserve of the Monts d’Azur stands today as one of the spearheads of ecotourism; With people’s awareness, this initiative can only be reinforced.
OUR NATURAL SWIMMING POOLAN ECO-RESPONSIBLE ACTION
Recharge your batteries during your stay and take advantage of our natural swimming pool to reconnect with your well-being ecologically!
This natural bathing area is designed for your enjoyment, following public health rules and aligning with the conservation of the Reserve. We do not use bactericidal products or pH correctors. We entrust to nature the care of purifying this water. Set in motion by a very elaborate pumping system, the water crosses a natural biotope before returning to the pool. This aquatic garden cannot be stepped on and visitors must not enter this area.
The water in the natural pool is rich in plankton which contributes to the purification process. Consequently, any chemical product is prohibited, including sun creams or oils ! Be seduced by this natural luxury and entrust your comfort to our microscopic collaborators! Back to the natural and a cure of vitality guaranteed !
SWIM AT YOUR OWN RISK :
Children must be accompanied by an adult
PILOT EXAMPLE OF ECOTOURISM & VACATIONSIN A REMARKABLE NATURAL SITE
Tourist activity can have, in natural areas previously spared from human contact, a significant environmental cost due to :
- the creation or development of the necessary transport and accommodation infrastructure;
- the seasonal overconsumption of natural resources, including water and natural spaces;
- overuse of wastewater treatment and treatment of household waste.
Based on this, the Preserve association with the services of the Conseil Général and the Prefecture, aims to promote solutions to reduce the environmental impact of tourism and to promote the development of ecotourism.
We are exploring three options :
- Reduce the impact of current and future infrastructure :
The Haut pays is characterized by many old buildings of agricultural or industrial origin but also sometimes imposing dwelling houses now abandoned (ex: village of Thorenc). Environmental practice requires rehabilitation of the current building rather than new construction, especially since there are now many bioclimatic renovation techniques, some already implemented by the association Preserve, with the support of the Government and Conseil General.
The Haut-pays is also characterized by the beauty and diversity of its landscapes still untouched. In the next ten years, tourism is expected to develop there. It will then be a question for all responsible parties to consider the inestimable value of the landscapes. But also, to design structures integrated into the natural environment, saving in space, materials and if possible, to be dismantled. This is the concept of the Ecolodge, inaugurated during the summer of 2009, within the framework of the rural centres of excellence.
- Manage natural resources: fauna, flora, water :
Tourism, to be sustainable, must imperatively consider the scarcity and fragility of natural resources. They are a major strategical stake subject to rigorous management.
Developing ecotourism and holidays with an ecological vocation on a fragile territory presents daily challenges. These are: saving water or managing waste, organizing site visits and preserving or increasing biodiversity, developing the Reserve, and identifying ecological services.
- Encourage alternative modes of travel :
The tourist development of a fragile territory requires favouring transport modes that save infrastructure. Horse and carriage are options. You can use our tracks provided you have a light and perfectly suspended horse-drawn carriage.
Our eco-responsible actions in the ReserveExperimental rehabilitation of a 19th century villa
THE BIOCLIMATIC VILLA – OBJECTIVES:
- Rehabilitate an old villa to create 5 bedrooms with 2 to 4 beds;
- Test new restoration solutions;
- Develop an ecological habitat that is self-sufficient in energy and water.
The rehabilitation was preceded by a bioclimatic analysis of this villa: location, altitude, exposure, snow cover, rainfall, extreme temperatures, materials used…
The stone walls are preserved (bound by a poor mortar but covered with a very solid coating) and most of the roof.
BALCONIES AND ROOF
Intended for visitors to the Reserve, this villa has wooden balconies surrounding the building as in the traditional architecture of the village of Thorenc. Their function is threefold :
- protection against sunlight in summer (in association shade of the roofs) opposed to the optimization of solar rays in the winter (various sizes);
- exterior pedestrian access and optimization of interior spaces;
- wildlife observatories
The aerothermal sensor was designed and developed especially for this project. The sun’s rays warm the air circulating in the translucent box. The preheated air is blown by the mechanical ventilation into all the rooms of the building.
This supply of sun calories is stored in the mass elements (floor slab, “Fermacell” of the walls) to be returned at night. The system operates without additional electrical consumption, the VMC pushes the air into the aerosensor.
This system is complemented by underfloor heating connected to a geothermal power plant which provides the additional degrees necessary for the agritourism Home Page. This unit comes into operation when the sunshine becomes insufficient (overcast sky, very low outside temperature).
At night, due to the energy performance of the building, the double flow ventilation can ensure, on its own, an air temperature of 15 to 18 °C.
SOLAR PANELS FOR HOT WATER
Solar panels are integrated into the balconies of the facade and produce most of the hot water consumed. A very well insulated 600 litre tank can store the necessary domestic hot water.
Built in laminated Douglas fir it does not require any treatment.
The same principles of bioclimatic architecture have been implemented to the interior, giving priority to :
- solar energy: the majority of the rooms have two southern openings (4/5 rooms).
- natural insulation: local wood (false ceilings) and cellulose lined in the walls and ceilings. This cellulose lining comes from recycled local newspapers. It combines very high thermal performance and lightness (thermal resistance coefficient of 4 for the walls, 6 for the ceiling).
- Interior heating is sorted in partitions made either of cellular concrete or of gypsum panels mixed with cellulose fibres.
- isothermal carpentry in European wood (laminated pine made in France). All exterior carpentry has 4/16/4 double-glazing. All openings are fitted with solid wood shutters.
- the installation of geothermal heating, with a horizontal sensor, distributed all the rooms.
A room thermostat has been installed in each room. Heating is through a heating circuit cast in a liquid floor screed. This process considerably favours the geothermal energy supply. A lime slab promotes the bioclimatic performance of the building.
THE ELECTRICITY AND LIGHTS
Both interior and exterior lighting are set up with low-consumption light bulbs. Motion sensors are equipped in the outbuildings.
ALL SYSTEMS COMBINED, THE REDUCTION IN ENERGY CONSUMPTION IS AROUND 70% !
REDUCTION OF WATER CONSUMPTION
Showers rather than bathtubs and water flow savers are at each water point.
An attachment screwed at the end of the tap channels the stream and reduces the water flow from 15 litres/min (standard flow) to 6 litres/min, SAVING OF 60% FOR EQUAL COMFORT.
A regulator installed in the shower reduces water consumption by 50%, reducing the flow rate of the hand-held shower from 20 litres/min to 9 litres/min.
RECYCLING OF WASTEWATER
A natural lagoon of 350 m² for a volume of 250 m3 ensures complete purification of wastewater. It supplies a wetland rich in several hundred
species of plants, shrubs, and trees in aquatic environments. This area is also a refuge for aquatic birds (The Dabchicks, the common snipe…).