Pearl of De Langstraat: Bed & Breakfast (B&B) De Giechelaar in Loon op Zand

| Aileen Cook

The Giggler is actually a sneaky shoe

Recently I was visiting Mart Emmen in her Bed & Breakfast. After taking in the garden already surprised, I was met inside by the smell of delicious baking.... And I immediately felt at home.

Authentic and welcoming
12 years ago she and her partner bought the house with old barn and this beautiful property was actually nothing more than a stable where the cows used to be. They decided to turn it into a B&B but keeping the characteristic features of the property. With their own hands they moved old beams and stripped the old stones to bring them back into the building. And what a beautiful result!

After two years of combining a job with the B&B, a reorganization and increasing number of guests gave her the push to focus entirely on the B&B. Her communications background helps her to empathize well with her guests and thus adapt her hospitality to the needs of her visitors.

Breakfast in your bathrobe
It's nice and warm, everything is right and so you immediately feel at home. And exactly that is what Mart wants to achieve with her B&B. You feel at home and can come here with any intention (weekend away, out and about in the region, work or total rest). "Lovely when people sit at the dining table in their bathrobes in the morning, then people are really at home."

A giggler
The name raises questions for me, so my question is: Where does the name come from? Mart explains that, just as the building shows its origins, they also wanted the name to reflect something from the region and they chose the Giechelaar. A giechelaar is a name from the Langstraat and dates back to the days of tanneries and shoemaking. As a servant you could only make shoes for your own boss, but low wages and large families caused people to make shoes for others on the sly, these sneaky shoes were called giechelaars.

Things are almost perfect already, so I wonder if Mart could wish for more? Ambitions are certainly there, and after this crazy time, the main thing is to get everything back to normal first and maybe even higher occupancy rates than before. But the greatest ambition lies in appreciation and enjoyment. Appreciation on every visit and seeing that people really enjoyed their stay, whether they came for quiet, to work or a weekend getaway.

Enjoying a visit
Soon I will also be enjoying a visit at Mart's, just a night away. This time the kids won't be allowed to come along, although they would really enjoy it with the two goats in the garden and the fresh eggs that can be gathered from the chickens. I am already looking forward to it!

Would you like to enjoy a visit to the Giechelaar now! Then find out where you 'll end up


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