by Renate Goergen
Everybody knows that as a social entrepreneur of the European Le Mat Social Franchising Network I am particularly proud and happy on the “accoglienza” of our Swedish partners. When I arrived in Goeteborg this time Mariann Svensson from Le Mat B&B in Goeteborg welcomed me as a really “old colleague” what we are at least ! We discussed about the development in Italy, in UK and obviously in Sweden. Mariann again told me how much she likes this work and that her strongest wish is to create a permanent European exchange program among the Le Mat workers and managers to see what the others are doing, how to rise quality, which kind of innovative ideas are coming up here or there…
The day after my arrival and a evening discussion with a group of active Le Mat supporters we took the train to Stockholm to visit the Le Mat B&B Akers Runoe Station and to meet with the workers and members of the cooperative. During the trip Elisabet Abrahamsson illustrated the social franchising strategy here in Sweden and she prepared me to the meeting with the new upcoming Le Mats in Partille; a very interesting project in an industrial archaeological area near Goeteborg. Following to the Le Mat development strategies Elisabet is already working with the aspiring Le Mat group, planning the details, their work, their social cooperative!
After some hours travelling in Stockholm we took a local train towards Akersberga and after not more than 30 minutes the train stopped at Akers Runoe Station and suddenly we could see the new green logo of Le Mat in front of a nice building and in middle of a beautiful green garden. 2 very nice persons welcomed us with a small nice bouquet of coloured flowers. ..
Suddenly we could meet the staff of the Hotel, the members of the cooperative and drinking some coffee and eating very good cakes we shared our being part of the Le Mat family. They told us about their work, the guests, the organization and I brought some news from southern parts of Europe.
The Hotel is beautiful, cared in any detail, full with love and warm messages – written by themselves – in order not to get lost in the building and feel immediately at home. The rooms are bright and friendly with many simple but very charming details. A SPECIAL PLACE LE MAT managed by a group of SPECIAL PEOPLE but the most special thing is that they are able to communicate their values of “accoglienza” and solidarity to the traveller!
That’s why I believe that this new Le Mat place could be a wonderful holiday place for South European travellers to discover Sweden, the countryside, the sea, the nature near Stockholm where they can arrive easily. We have to tell all this to many people, inside and outside Sweden.
Thank you to Elisabet and to all the Le Mat people and to Coompanion for this wonderful travel experience.