From Globetrotter to….
Colette Bastin manages the guesthouse Meerlust-Las Ballenas, and together with her team she will be your host. Her mind is set to make every guest feel at home from the first day on. Born in Hawaii and raised mainly in Switzerland, plus having a father and family members who lived in Belgium, Africa, Asia and the USA, she has always considered herself being “at home” in different places and speaks several languages. After her studies she spent most of her career flying as a Cabin Crew Member for Swissair/ SWISS International Airlines, and worked for many years as a Crew- and Product-Manager. Today, Colette lives alternatively in Switzerland and in Andalusia.
Coach and Innkeeper
“Actually, thinking about it, I am almost doing the same today as when I was with the airline, and still love it”, she laughs in an interview. “I am now working as a coach to help people develop their skills, their lifestyle or product ideas, and I am also a guesthouse manager, where I look after my clients as if they were my first class and VIP passengers. The only difference is, that now I welcome them at the ocean, not in an airplane.” – Many of her Meerlust guests are regularly returning, as they quickly fell in love with this beautiful area, exactly as she did herself so many years ago.
Photography and Ocean
Colette’s passion is the ocean, and she won’t miss an opportunity to learn something new about it or to help organise a beach cleanup. And then there is photography: take your chance to book her for a nice portrait session when you see her! Or choose your favorite pictures directly from Colette’s Photo Website.
MEERLUST – LAS BALLENAS: Meerlust means “Pleasure of the Ocean” and is also a great wine from South Africa. Las Ballenas is Spanish for “The Whales“, as there are many whales, orcas and dolphins living in our waters. You can see them e.g. on a whale watching trip with our friends from FIRMM, which is a unique experience!
A good team is needed to take care of the Guesthouse! The MEERLUST Ladies’ Team is in charge of the spotless cleanliness of the guest rooms and the service items. There is also the GARDENER’s Team, in charge to create a quiet hideaway, trim and clean the large garden, but still keep it wild and lush. You can enjoy the beauty of their work while relaxing in the hammocks or at the pool, surrounded by scents, greens and flowers.
Besides these two main teams we work together with a certified massage therapist and a podiatrist who both come to MEERLUST on guests’ request – appointments can be made in advance, before you arrive.
An important part of the MEERLUST Team are our dogs and cats who live as family members on the finca. They are in charge of guest relations, security and entertainment, well behaved and loved by our guests.
Colette and her MEERLUST Team all love nature, wildlife, animals and the ocean. Nature conservancy and sustainability are important to us. We are proud to have been awarded the Green Leaders Gold Award for sustainability and (The Certificate of Excellence) on Tripadvisor. We are also active in Ocean conservancy, Colette is organizing beach cleanups on a regular basis.
For an exceptional experience – as mentioned before – we like to recommend an excursion into the Strait of Gibraltar by boat, where you can have the best whale watching experience and see some of the beautiful Ocean mammals that live here.
MEERLUST has been created in a most sustainable way possible, without having to compromise on comfort. The materials and products we use are natural, as well for the house itself as for our guests.
For our guests the amenity products are made of natural ingredients by Compagnie de Provence. The sheets and towels are made of pure cotton, the feather/down pillows and duvets are certified by Down Pass. Tencel fibre pillows and duvets are also available on request. All our products are anti allergic.
We use solar-technique and energy-efficient heat pumps to heat water and for central heating. The shaded terraces in front of the houses form a cool courtyard to help keep the rooms cool in summer. The ceiling ventilators are usually enough to cope with our summer climate here on the Atlantic coast, and fresh air can circulate through all rooms, thanks to windows that open or can be tilted with mosquito nets for protection at night.
Our long lap pool is not heated, but it is oriented to the South with its long side, so that the flatter winter sun can passively heat the dark blue mosaics, made of recycled glass.