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"The Dew and the Sparrow": The Test of Camp Life
The first glamorous camp appeared in the Far East
How to enjoy the delights of wild tourism without risk to health? Who gives a cozy treshka in the center of the taiga? How is camping connected with education, local lore and increasing the attractiveness of the region in the eyes of foreigners? EastRussia learned from the traveler, one of the founders of the project, which has no analogues in the east of Russia -Alexandra Kolbina.
- Alexander, where did it all begin?
- I was born under the Volochaevskaya hill, and from childhood we went to the "campaigns", rushed around the village boys. Then it grew into big stories, travels. And life in tents is an integral part of hiking life. You can go to any place, say, to the sea, and this is all mobile and cool. But now we have grown up and began to settle down. And they came to the idea, and how to make it look like a hike, but you are comfortable. My son is four years old. How to make sure that it does not freeze, that it is comfortable and cool in nature?
- That is, the basis of the project - selfishness?
- There was also a request from outside. For example, I want to hike, but do not want for long, scares the dampness, you can not wash yourself, you need to carry things on yourself. All those moments that stop many from hiking. Although those who decide, in the process forget about what is hard, and catch the buzz, not paying attention to the little things.
A friend addressed me, said, there is a base and a few barbecue houses, if you want, do it. We with my partner-businessman Vitali Yazvenko began to storm, and what can be done there. We went through a bunch of formats. With that base, we did not agree, but for us it became a kind of training. We found information about glamping, and decided on the criteria: simplicity, convenience, mobility and budget. By the autumn the name "Rosa and the Sparrow" was born.
- In Khabarovsk, there are suburban bases up to three stars. Do you have competitors and a deficit in this market?
- If there is borsch, it does not mean that you do not want ice cream. If you rest in a three-four-star hotel, then there are other conditions, a different atmosphere. You can not burn a bonfire, you can not fry potatoes, you can not get stuck in the sky, you do not work out some kind of hiking things. And this is its own charm. Here's how the "Race of Heroes": you can be a spectator, and you can run around in mud - these are different formats. We wanted to share with people the atmosphere that we catch in campaigns. With those who went on field trips in the student years, and now grew up and wants to remember, to show their children how they rested in tents, kindled a fire.
The second group is those who in principle have never tried it, but I really want to. It is risky to drag these immediately into the trek. For example, you went in and you can only get out after seven days. Do not jump off. Like you buckwheat, you do not like buckwheat, you eat meat or do not eat. And our project is such a sampler, you can experience everything in comfortable conditions. At any time, if a hurricane begins, you can hide in a solid stable tent. Now we stand on the "Air Park", there is a house with a fireplace, a toilet is normal, a veranda with a roof. All the conditions that you live in a tent, but not in the wilderness, but on the brink of civilization.
- How much time has passed since the ripening of the idea in my head before the arrival of the first tourists?
- Six months. In May, I sat down behind Google's map and began to search, where theoretically there could be something interesting. We made a list of places. Then we got into the car and drove all around Khabarovsk. Some lakes, heels, fields, forests, free zones. Many of the places did not fit in certain points. It is desirable that the pond was, a sensible road for the arrival on the car. It's good that there were woods, mountains, a field ...
- Rocks, waterfalls with rainbows ...
- Yes, approximately. And so, like in the "Nameless Star" - "I figured it out!" We did not find an ideal place right next to Khabarovsk. Always, if there are no people, it means that far away, if there are people, then the courtyard. But we are trying to make the minuses a plus, and the pluses intensify. That is, if in the forest, it is damp, but this forest is not hot. If in the field, there is wind, but this field is with the sun and with the stars!
- So, you conducted a casting of the territories.
- Yes, we went, selected the options. The problem is that this is not my main job with Vitaly. But we found a good place, made the first party for our own, put up a tent, shashlik fried, watched the movie. We launched the format, photos were taken. It was in July. We got Stas Korovin from the "Ballooners Club" and offered to take part in the "Air Park", where the land is owned. We said ok and got up there. We were given a hundred square meters. In early August, the first clients arrived, girls. Then another little bit. The main problem is that "Air Park" has its own events - weddings, corporate parties, so we missed all weekend in August and September.
- In theory, you need to find your place?
- We are doing this. We have a meeting in the administration of the Khabarovsk region, we wrote a statement that we are asking to provide a place for our needs. Well, we also look at it in parallel.
- Why did you not take the Far Eastern hectare for this project?
- Hectares are all far away. And it is not clear where. I looked at places where there are hectares and where you can get up purely hypothetically. There are places, but it is necessary to go somewhere there to the Choir and look for it. At a distance from the city there are pluses and minuses. Since we plan to make a network, it is possible that the campsite will be somewhere far away in the taiga.
"From a distance it looks like an Indian settlement." From what material are your tents made, where you ordered them, how they were mounted?
- These are large tents, they are sewn from a fabric that looks like a dense cotton with water-repellent impregnation. There is no frame. They are rags, in the middle there is a pole that holds the roof. The rest is on stretch marks. Remember the tents of geologists? Here is similar. The height is three meters, diameter five. Sew them for us in China to order. But the tent for the kitchen-campfire zone was cheaper to sew in Khabarovsk. We want to put Indian Tipi and yurts on the table. In 2013, we went to the Sayans, rafted along the river and tasted all this Buryat ethnic topic, got infected.
- Is it a purely summer business? And tell me about the project budget.
- Glamping works from April to October. We have the idea of winter tents, but we have not yet dealt with this, we need a stove, and there are no suitable stoves. We are now testing a gas stove.
In full we need a half million, have already invested 600-700 thousand. On the payback of speech is not yet. The cost for guests 5000 rubles per day for a tent house, they are 4-local. Now there are only four of them, we will buy them. But the price tag is likely to increase. It was a starter, we have not yet launched the project at full capacity. No food yet. There will be a tourist flow, and we will organize it for a fee.
- Why such a price? 4-local house in Primorye in the summer can be rented for a smaller amount. I emphasize, there is a sea there.
- As they say, toast can not cost 8 dollars, and a hook can. Granny - this is what you fried in a frying pan is a simple piece, and the hook is a neatly fried and served very nicely. We want to serve everything beautifully, not "like, guys, here's a tent, you have so much." To have dishes, linen.
- In which cities in Russia have such camping sites been successfully operating?
- On the Volga, in Karelia, somewhere in the Irkutsk region. In Sochi there was something similar. That is, we found 4-5 similar projects on the Internet. In the Far East we are pioneers. We will develop, and make a franchise. Vanino asks, Blagoveshchensk. We will share history, talk about the pitfalls, traffic.
- And tell us for free about a couple of "stones."
- Well, firstly, where to take all this. How much it goes, how to order. Order through us will go, we will just cut people off spending time negotiating with China. It would seem that everything is close, but go find it, agree. And there are a lot of things there, all kinds of tents, bed linen, beds.
While we are only working with this, the territory has not yet been ennobled. This is planned for the next year. When we know that this is our place, we will invest finances and forces. Under the tents need wooden decking. Now it's getting colder, and it's directly felt.
- Who is the target audience of the Glamping Park?
- I want to clarify that glamor is not necessarily stupid, rosy and tasteless, as we have now settled, the term was somewhat vulgar. Although glamor translates as luxurious, sublime. There, both intellect and aesthetics are present. Now it is somewhere gone. For example, we call cottages two-story barracks, no relationship to the cottages. So, a person arrives, settles in a tent, and there he climbs not into a sleeping bag, but into a good bed with bed linen. It's all designed beautifully designed. We will deal with good filling from next year, when we will determine the place. That is unusual for a tourist, it is soft, cozy and warm.
Around these tents some interesting space, forest, field, river, lake. Nearby there is a zone where you can cook something, a campfire zone where you can chat at night, lie in padded stools, get stuck on the stars, wrap yourself in a blanket. The girls came, it was very buzzing, they were sitting, drinking wine, eating something, roasting at the stake, laughing, studying the stars in applications. It was a nice atmosphere.
On the territory or nearby, I would like to make a route, according to which a person can pass, take a walk, pick something up, see some stories, study them. Educational component we want to introduce and thematic pieces: separate races of botanists, for example. That is, a person walks, collects a herbarium, and the specialist tells about local plants, useful, dangerous, some legends.
We also plan archeologists and astronomers. This for today, no one has. With the government of the Khabarovsk Territory, we did not work directly, only in the corridors we communicate, we are told, they say, yes, it is interesting. Officials are also interested in the emergence of something alive and present. Because so far as a counterbalance there are only shish kebabs, where you can come, pardon mois, pobuhat.
Firstly, this is the place where you can easily learn the camping lifestyle. Plus it's an educational project to learn things. Beautiful interior of the tent taught design, taste, some board games helped people play, entertain, showed that you can not only blow beer. Even beer drinking can be beautiful, interesting. Educational program for adults, children, family, this is astronomy and botany, some tourist skills, ethnography, through fairy tales, through history, through legends. This all would like to show our local culture, Khabarovsk.
- How is the factor frightening tourists in our region more than a heavy backpack - a gnat?
- There are different traps, scarers, lure, killers. The question is solved. You put and at a distance of 100 meters, removes mosquitoes and midge, and they do not cut out so much. We tested on the "Air Park". Some days they were not at all, in some they appeared with sunset, but we went to the fire, and they flew.
- Do you expect to attract Muscovites, tourists from other cities, foreigners, or are you targeting local people?
- We would like to see a tourist point of reference. Where are you required to visit upon arrival in Khabarovsk. Our place in the idea is exactly where you can get to know Khabarovsk, the Khabarovsk Territory, the surroundings, nature, and you can also bring caviar, some of our beautiful things to the campsite. For Asians, it would be interesting, the Chinese, Japanese, Koreans. Unfortunately, what other tourist zones offer is all in a format that you will not see Russia or the region in particular. There is an exception - the Nanai village in Sikachi-Alyan and the Nanai camp, they are not bad. But it is not enough that torkat. There is, for example, a Russian village on Bychikha, but how it works is not clear. Come, and there is no one! There is also an ecotrail at the Bolshekhekhtsirsky Reserve. Perhaps we will try to make a joint project with them. But there it is more difficult with gathering wild-growing or fishing, on the territory of the reserve this is all forbidden.
- What are your plans for the winter?
- We will engage in branding, design design. And, of course, look for your ideal place. Plus we are now connecting a parallel project, no longer stationary, is a glamping campaign "The wind is free". The other day we went to Anyui rocks, took the same tents. Weight of one 35 kilograms. It was cozy there. You sleep in a cozy "treshka" in the heart of the taiga in bed, under you a mattress, bed linen, rugs. And around the forest, moss, lichens hang thick-thick, ate, and behind the crowns in the sky extends the Milky Way. It's a bomb in general. Soon we'll go, just test in the cold weather a freshly bought stove. I myself like cave talks very much, we call it when we are sitting by the fire, everything is dirty, we eat potatoes, we spin rolls of rice with stew and talk about plastic cards, blockade, crypto-currencies, transfers, nanotechnologies, squares and other modern things. At the same time, no one is distracted by the same phones.
Interviewed by Elena Vertyankina