A Japanese Escapade in the Heart of the Bay of the Somme
Nestled on the edge of the Bay of the Somme’s nature reserve is Le bruit de l’eau (The Sound of Water). It’s a Japanese-inspired ecolodge which is reminiscent of a ryokan. With wooden buildings, sliding windows, partitions made from washi paper, kotatsu tables and tatami mats to sleep on, Japan is present everywhere, but with great subtlety.
‘I wanted the ecolodge to be a way of discovering Japanese life and culture, but also of being fully immersed in nature’, explains Tibo Dhermy, owner of Bruit de l’eau. ‘I didn’t just want to make a direct copy of a Japanese interior; I wanted to take a few references from it, like wabi-sabi.’ The names of the rooms (such as Paris-Tokyo suite and Dojo d’été, Summer Dojo) are a nod to Japan, and the rooms themselves contain a mixture of influences, souvenirs from the owner’s travels as a photographer.
An ode to nature
It’s a cocoon where time is forgotten, where travellers can enjoy a breath-taking view of the unspoilt nature that surrounds them, wherever they are. ‘Le bruit de l’eau was built on a hectare of land, on the edge of the nature reserve. The buildings all face the south, to give the best view of nature’, explains Tibo. ‘They’re also raised up from the ground, which makes you feel like you’re completely immersed in the environment.’
The whole project was designed and made a reality by Tibo and, in the past few years, he has built two further lodgings on the land: one is a geodesic ecolodge made from wood and glass where guests can gaze at the stars from their bed, and the other is floating on a body of water in the forest.
When it comes to cuisine, Le bruit de l’eau offers guests two vegetarian meal options, also inspired by Japan. There’s the Ryokan option, comprising little Japanese mezzes, and the Kaiseki option, which is more complex and consists of 7 to 9 little dishes served together. Here, too, Tibo didn’t simply want to replicate the Japanese concept, but rather adapt it to the environment. Even though the chef uses Japanese cooking techniques and takes inspiration from Japan for the recipes, the ingredients come from local producers.
A final important detail, which is sure to delight epicureans: Le bruit de l’eau has a furo, a round wooden bath, found on a little island in the middle of the forest. ‘It’s Japan without jetlag, just two hours from Paris and right in the heart of nature’, Tibo summarises. It’s a whole other world.
Ecolodge Le bruit de l'eau
1 chemin des Matelots
80120 Saint-Quentin-en-Tourmont, France
Information and Reservation: +33 6 08 62 88 84www.lebruitdeleau.org/
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