21-03-2018 by Linda
Welcome to Extralingo Cribs! Eh, Schools! Every month at our blog we have a good talk with an employee of one of the schools on our platform. Via Skype, or - if we are lucky - with a visit. In this episode we speak with Lea Lateuliere that is born and raised in Biarritz and works at language school France Langue Biarritz for two years now. Lea is in love with the romantic schoolbuilding where she has the pleasure to work in. “When you arrive at our school you will see. It is a typical white Basque villa enhanced with a romantic atmosphere. It’s like walking into a French movie.
School facts France Langue Biarritz
Founded in? 2009
Who works here? 3 people in administration, 17 teachers (in high season)
How many classrooms? 3 in winter, 9 in summer
The best of the school? The relaxed surfing atmosphere
So, Lea, you are a big fan of the school building. Take us on an imaginary trip with you inside the school.
I’d love to. Okay, so, when you arrive you will see a typical white Basque house with romantic authentic shutters to cover the windows on days when it’s hot and sunny. It’s an old but well preserved building that used to be a family house in a beautiful street with lots of trees. With five minutes walking from here your feet will touch the ocean and lots of people surf there. Back to the building. Around the house there’s a nice garden with a veranda, a terrace a big tree and a swimming pool. When you step inside the front door you will see that all the rooms are white and bright. In total you will find seven classrooms. In the big living room on the ground floor you’ll see my desk, a comfy sofa, a wooden table and a coffee machine. It all looks super homely.
Besides the building, what makes your school different from other French language schools?
The fact that we are an official exam centre. France Langue is a big company that we, as France Langue Biarritz, are part of. This makes that our school is certificated and works super professional. It also means that, as regards to our lessons, courses and method: we cannot just do what we want to do but have to stick to a program that is checked regularly. This ensures our quality. Other than that, we have really nice apartments inside the school that students can stay in.
What is it about Biarritz most people are attracted to?
Well there’s a reason I never left this town. Biarritz is an old fisherman village that is actually quite small. Everything we have is on one side in front of the sea and on the other side in front of the mountains. Because of the good surf a lot of surf enthusiasts come here in the summer and then it gets busy and lively in town. This ensures there is always a great atmosphere. During winter the village has a family kind of atmosphere: the town is calm and the nature is beautiful, an ideal climate for a language stay and to recharge your batteries. During the summer Biarritz dresses in a sunny atmosphere of its own and attracts a lot of people that go to the beach and lay in the ocean during the days and love to go out and have a drink at night. Besides that, Biarritz has a lovely old city centre with beautiful architecture. I promise you, this place will steal your heart. It has a relaxed holiday kind of vibe all the time.
How does a working day look like for you at France Langue Biarritz?
The working desk of me and my 2 colleagues is in the middle of the living room of the school. That’s nice cause then there is always a relaxed but vibrant and living vibe around me and this way I’m always up for a chat with the students. And they can ask me any time where to rent the best bikes, haha. What I do all day is being in touch with the host families where our students live and look for new ones. I call every host family that hosts a student every day. Just to check and chat. Besides that, I’m checking every week every little thing there is to do in Biarritz for the activities we organise. We have eight activities a week which always include surfing lessons, golfing and yoga lessons. Besides that, the program varies. From visits to the opera to dance and dinner parties.
What kind of students come to Langue School Biarritz?
A lot of different ones. From older people, to young adults. Depends a bit on the time of the year. Almost all our students have in common that they love the beach. Some people want to learn French because of their studies, others because of their jobs and others just because they think it is fun to learn a new language.
Last but not least: what do you think is the best kept secret in Biarritz?
My favourite spot is a viewing point on La Côte des Basques, just hundred steps removed from the school. From here you have an overview over both the beautiful mountains and the ocean. I come here at least once a week. My favourite restaurant is Le Comptoir du Foie Gras. This is a jovial meeting place that transforms from a shop selling jars of foie gras in the day to a local tapas bar with good wines in the evening. It is located on the marketplace of Biarritz where a lot of other restaurants are located as well. During the day you can buy the best local fish on the market and in the evening both locals and tourists come here to go out and have drinks and food.
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