Behind “La Porte Rouge”: welcoming is an art
Since October 2022, Nathalie Pauchant and Jean-Charles Huet have opened the red door of their main residence in Roubaix to professionals and tourists. More than a guest house, this unique place redefines the notion of hospitality, with generosity and high standards.
Love at first sight for this superb address which offers a haven of beauty in the heart of Roubaix. It’s been twenty years since the two passionate people from Roubais fell in love with this site, which housed the former Motte-Bossut factory, then “La Goutte de Lait”, a breastfeeding center created by textile manufacturers for workers.
From “The Drop of Milk” to “The Red Door”
“We went through a small door and first discovered the tree-lined garden, a rare space of somewhat wild nature in the city”, says Natalie. The places tell a story to which the couple, in love with Roubaix, is sensitive. The decision is made. There will be their happy home.
Jean-Charles, an architect recognized as a specialist in Jean Prouvé, decides to keep the facade of the building and leans against it a contemporary setting, with ample volumes and precise lines. This elegant and virtuoso gesture earned him a Rehabilitation Trophy in 2003. Special mention for the attention paid to the windows which invite the sun and dialogue with an enchanting exterior where bamboos flourish.
Twenty years of happiness in this family home, children growing up and leaving the nest, confinement “finally pleasant in a privileged environment”, a desire for elsewhere then for something else, and then a “why not”… reflection leads the couple to open a new chapter in their life in Roubaix. From now on, both will set up their offices there and at the same time open a guest house. After all, hospitality is in their blood. The house has seen celebrations with Andalusian accents, moments of joy and sharing to the rhythm of flamenco. She can continue to live, again and otherwise.
Four rooms, four experiences
This year opens a new chapter in the life of the family home, which has benefited from some adjustments, in order to create four independent comfortable rooms, whose names have been chosen with care, to make sense.
The Grand Angle suite (reference to the photograph) is simply breathtaking, with its XXL bathroom equipped with a glazed cabin opening onto the garden, which allows you to take a shower like a summer rain in Bali. “It was our room” comments Nathalie, showing us around. No regrets ? “I thought I was going to have some and then finally no. I’m glad our guests can enjoy it. »
La Rita evokes Jean-Charles’ first office in this unique place “Chez Rita”, which he helped to found. Pop Art immerses you in an arty and cozy universe. Finally, the Studio, with an equally neat decoration, is equipped with a functional kitchen. Four bedrooms for four different experiences, each one unique.
The oven rings, reminding us that the granola is browning in it. Here, the generous breakfast is included in the price, and almost everything, from jams to gourmet cereals, is homemade.
Seminars, photo shoots… services on request and made to measure
No screen in this box. This is a principle to which Nathalie and Jean-Charles are attached. When you go through the red door, you enter a protected site, disconnected, safe from networks and digital hubbub. “This is what the clients, management committees for example, whom we welcome to seminars appreciate”, underlines the one who worked at La Redoute and for Damart in particular, rich in a solid professional network. “The feedback is excellent, she rejoices. The atmosphere of the house would be particularly conducive to peaceful fruitful exchanges. »
Surprise that Jean-Charles did not expect, “there are many foreign tourists, Dutch, English, Americans. They choose Roubaix for La Piscine, the Villa Cavrois, but also as a strategic starting point to radiate throughout the metropolis. »
Among the services offered by La Porte Rouge: rental for photo shoots. And why not… the cinema! Isn’t Roubaix a land of filming? Everything is open.
The beautiful encounters
Exceptional guest house, ephemeral art gallery, intimate pottery workshop, exclusive boutique… La Porte Rouge multiplies the reasons to push it. And everything is aligned to live “beautiful encounters”. This is what Jean-Charles retains, who definitely does not regret the path taken a year ago. Like a logical continuation, a natural extension of what has always been the life of this complementary duo, made of openness and precisely encounters.
On the occasion of La Nuit des Arts, in May, the ceramics of Sandrine Hurtrer marvelously invaded the house, the garden, the pond… While the photographs of Bruno Dewaele were exhibited in majesty. A whispered exhibition-event, a real success. “It was Sandrine who introduced me to ceramics, confides Nathalie, who plunged her hands into the earth with an approach “almost more sensory than artistic”.
For the mistress of the house, if hosting is an art, filming is therapy. In her pottery workshop, Nathalie, a certified coach, offers initiations to working the earth and “Earth-Happy” sessions: “Filming allows you to refocus. Hands in the ground, speech is freed and exchanges are fluid. A 2h30 session offers a real space for expression. » The Red Door has not finished making people happy.
[Photos : Bruno Dewaele, sauf le portrait de Anaïs Gadeau – Ville de Roubaix]