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Our stunning new project

By admin | September 15, 2006

Once in a blue moon do you find your dreams matched by reality and attainable, which is how we felt when we saw this house for sale, in Biertan.  We had befriended Bianca, a lovely, sweet Romanian who works in Biertan during the summer months, and asked her to tell us if a house came up for sale in Biertan.  We had fallen in love with this fairy tale village over the course of Summer 2006, and by August decided we must buy a house there.  So…..

 ….on one of our regular visits to Biertan in September, Bianca told us about a house a close family friend was selling, on Strada Coşbuc, directly opposite the stunningly attractive Fortified Church.  It was owned by a family of Transylvanian Saxons whose grandmother had recently passed away.  Sara Römischer (see link) had lived in the house up until her death in Spring 2006, and the house had passed to her surviving children/grandchildren.  Unfortunately they did not have sufficient funds to buy each other out, and the house needed a lot of TLC, so we agreed to step in and buy it from them to restore it to its former beauty.  We did experience some sadness in breaking a long line of family ownership of the house, although we hope that with our love for Biertan, Transylvania and the Saxon way of life we can help to pass it on to future generations better than otherwise might be the case.  There is a rash of unsympathetic restorations across Romania, which we are totally opposed to, so….

 …we finally bought the house in September, not long before we were going to return to the UK.  I will post some photos of the interior soon, but here goes for now with a photo of the exterior.  You can see the house on the left has lost all its render and is in a state of dereliction.  It is owned by a Saxon permanently living in Germany - who seems reluctant to sell up.  IF THERE IS ANYONE OUT THERE WILLING TO MAKE AN OFFER FOR THAT HOUSE, PLEASE GET IN TOUCH.  It is in a fantastic aspect and as a complete renovation prospect, there is somewhat a blank canvas (although it must be restored in the original style on the Church facing facade).

Strada Cosbuc house

 The inside of the house in Biertan:

 Biertan living roomBiertan fireplaceBiertan attic

  Living room                                Chimney                                  Attic 

The living room has the msot amazing beams which we were instantly attracted to, and which is typical of old Saxon houses. Also typical is that the ceiling is insulated with a thick layer of soil infill, so the beams needed to be very strong to bear the weight of the soil. We intend to strip the paint from the beams and show the wood - not really the Saxon way in this house, but we have seen it done in other traditional houses.

The fireplace is interesting because it is on the first floor! It wasn’t a heat giving fireplace but actually used for smoking meats. We are going to restore it, but not as a smoking fire place!

The attic is really large and an amazing space. We can’t afford to do anything more than put a vapour permeable membrane in as a first step for a future conversion to living space, but as you can see below, one of the beams shows the age of the house build, amazingly Tuesday 30th April 1766 - nearly 250 years ago!!

Biertan attic date beam

The back garden of our new home, or should I say “project”:

Topics: Transylvania, Biertan |