“My grandchildren are the next generation of Bondholders”

“My grandchildren are the next generation of Bondholders”

Though the Holiday Property Bond welcomes investment from all quarters, for various reasons the Bond is not actively marketed to EC member states. It follows that some overseas Bondholders – a small, but growing, number – generally discover HPB by more indirect means! Such was the case with Dr Patrick Hoet, from Belgium…

Pharmaceutical consultant Patrick, wife Marie-Eve and children Jerome (then 15) and Sara (13) were on a cycling holiday in Brittany in the late 1980s. “There we were, pedalling along merrily,” recalls Patrick, “when Jerome’s bike effectively broke down outside a smallish, but very beautiful, château. In need of some assistance, we thought we’d knock on the door.”

That door happened to be the entrance to Le Manoir du Hilguy, the Bond’s Breton home. “The location was nice, and the site superb,” Patrick says. “I got talking to various people – Bondholders, site management, I’m afraid I forget exactly who; we were primarily focused on getting the bicycle fixed.

“But, interested by the site, I came away with some information, and the idea planted in my head that this ‘Bond’ might be good for the Hoet family. We continued our holiday; but when we got home I looked into HPB in more depth, and was impressed.”

Impressed enough to make an investment, which has more than paid off. Since investing in 1990 Patrick and Marie-Eve have enjoyed numerous Bond holidays at Hilguy (of course); Constant, in France’s Dordogne region; Le Mont de St Siméon in Île de France, just an hour’s drive from Paris; and Stigliano in Tuscany, the Hoets’ favourite site. “It’s a fantastic location, so handy for Florence, Siena and the Chianti region,” Patrick says. “And to stay in such a venerable palazzo – some parts of Stigliano are 800 years old – is a real privilege.”

They’ve also holidayed at La Reserva de Biniorella, in Majorca; El Pueblito de Alfaix in southern Spain, HPB’s newest overseas site; El Balcón de Santa Ana in La Gomera, the second-smallest Canary Island; Viehhofen in Austria; Rocha Brava, in Portugal’s Algarve; and Encosta Cabo Girão in Madeira. To date, however, Marie-Eve and Patrick have sojourned at just one UK location: Tigh Mor Trossachs in Perthshire. “We like walking, and sightseeing; and it’s a majestic site, in a beautiful location, with many surrounding attractions,” says Patrick. “And I’m aware that there are other HPB treasures to be found, in what is a lovely country. But – and I’m choosing my words carefully! – I’m a continental European, and the continental sites are what attract me more. That said, Jerome had a holiday at Sibton Park, HPB’s Kentish home, on our Bond – and came back full of praise. So for the future: who knows?”

Talking of the future… At the time of writing the Hoets were looking forward to a return trip to Constant in a fortnight’s time, followed by another stay at Stigliano. But when we caught up with Patrick at (appropriately enough) Hilguy, he had a different kind of future in mind. Holidaying with granddaughters Zoë and Elise (Sara’s daughters), the proud grandfather was happy enough to talk, but proved a reluctant photo subject!

“Don’t take photos of me, take them of my grandchildren!” he (sort-of) protested. “For us and for HPB, they’re the next generation.”

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