… a bit of history
When the Communist regime fell in 1989, everybody was very happy. However, we found very early that from our meager salaries or savings it is very difficult to repair grandfather's farm, which had been mismanaged for many years by the communists. At that time I studied at the University, my brother served in the army, my dad worked in the cooperative farm a everybody had different ideas what to do with the farm - to build a cowshed, grow mushrooms in the former cowshed or to breed hens.
However, we did bought the hens in 1992. Calculations sounded promising. But when the hens started to lay eggs, some "con" businessman imported cheap eggs to the country and prices dropped below the cost. We had to sell the hens, hence we managed to recover financially, but at that time we did not feel like doing any business anymore...
I had had an idea which actually was introduced by my father. In 1992 one day he came back from some office where he discussed the plans for the construction of a cowshed. At that time they asked him: "A cowshed in Lhotka, are you serious?" You better build tennis courts there and get ready for the guests. But the question was "Where we can find those guest rooms" since we lived in a small, 2 room apartment inherited from my grandma. We started drawing plans, loaned money and started rebuilding. How many times we had heard "Let the old farmhouse be, start building on the green field, you have lots of space around you and it will be cheaper."
Gradually we turned the old cow sheds and pig stays adjoining the farmhouse into the guesthouse. This garden survived all the plans, has been untouched and there we run a small camp. For sheep keeping, we let the grass grow in our fields. We do believe that all these activities we have been doing are called eco agro tourism.
We tried another activity. For 16 years we had been running a small general store in village Mrakotin. In spring 2011 due to the recession and due to the orientation of the customers to the supermarkets we had to close it down. Our small camp suffered, too. After several years of decline we were afraid that we would have to close down the camp, too. Luckily the trend has changed and the camp is flourishing again.
When the hard days come, we ask ourselves whether it would be better to do something else. What still keeps us in this business it is you-the satisfied guests who keep coming back. Thank for making us happy.