Our pets chose us and our unusual cave home in Spain

22 Jan, 2016

Our pets chose us and our unusual cave home in Spain

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Our pets chose us and our unusual home

We have pets, or rather we have been adopted by a number of pets,  four cats and one dog to be precise. All of them chose us and our home to share their lives. We love our pets, but actually we were quite surprised to have been so especially singled out by them especially considering where we live. Perhaps it is our home, perhaps it is our location that attracts them. One way or another we are all now a happy family living near Albox in Andalucia Spain in an unusual cave home with fantastic views that we have excavated and refurbished ourselves from the original cave dwelling. Here is our story…

My partner and I moved to Spain in 1996, with the intention of retiring here after working all our lives in England. We came upon a property that surprised us and offered us a project to work on together and promised what we saw as an amazing opportunity to create an affordable holiday home with great views of the valley.

Blue sky view of the view over the valley near Albox in Spain
A view over our valley
Seating area with spectacular views of the valley
Seating area with stunning views

This was 1996 and we toured the usual properties on the coast, and in the campo. Then we came across this former cave home, which had been abandoned for 50 years.

View up the track to the undeveloped house in 1996
View up to the house in 1996
Anne, the author standing infront of the house in 1996
Front entrance to the house in 1996

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The best part was it was a sizable plot which offered several opportunities to build, either to extend the cave or build elsewhere on the plot. We had options to develop – and electricity had just been introduced to the local area so the timing was good.

The idea of living in a former cave dwelling didn’t bother us, because the views over the valley are so spectacular.  And the weather and sunshine mean that we spend a lot of our days outside enjoying the space and freedom the countryside has to offer.  This unusual structure we realised would work to our benefit in time.

Renovating the Cave House in 1996

Anne the author standing in the undeveloped living room spade in hand
Clearing out the living room in 1996
Cleared rubble piled in the corridor in 1996
Development work in the corridor 1996

Although it was a lot of hard work to clear it out, extend in parts to give ourselves another floor and more space into the rock, we could also live a very eco-friendly existence.  We could go green.

Over the next 20 years we have become increasingly energy conscious and our lives are pretty eco-friendly.

Our home allows us to do this, and in fact it ensures that we are. We now have solar panels that generate all our energy for most of the year.  Even though we now have all the mod cons, TVs, radios, fully equipped kitchen with washing machine, our home still offers us very low cost living.

The cave house offers us a green way of living

Modern kitchen with appliances in a cave house
Kitchen with all mod cons in 2016
Corridor hewn out of the rock with cupboards and carpet
Corridor through to our extension in 2016

 

Though originally from Harlow in Essex UK where water is abundant in supply, we are now sparing and careful in our use of water.

And although we have a monthly supply delivered to our tank, we have become water conscious because of our particular situation here.

We have really enjoyed creating our home here. It feels intimate and cozy in the winter, and is surprisingly cool in the hot summers.

 

Furnished living room with white painted walls in 2016
Living room in 2016
Modern dining room in 2016
Dining room in 2016

Over the years we and our home have been adopted by a number of cats, and a dog.

They have simply visited, occasionally been fed and then within one or two visits they have become permanent tenants, co-dwellers of our Spanish home, hewn from the rock.

We love them dearly, they are our local family and although we are fortunate to have very friendly Spanish neighbours we enjoy calling the cats and our dog our very own fur family.   HOUSESIT AVAILABLE AGAIN – 11-18 June 2016

 

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Pets curled up on sofa and cushions in living room 2016

Pets - Yena the cat patrols our garden wall
Yena patrols our garden wall

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LamiaW

LamiaW

Founder and Director of HouseSitMatch - I'm a hands-on Admin on the site. Please ask any questions and as soon as I can I'll happily answer and assist where I can.

4 comments

  1. Wow that is just stunning. Thanks for sharing! I love staying and housesitting in unusual places. I love the authentic feel of the local life.

  2. What a cool house!

  3. Ant Ryan
    says:

    Wow cool place and another animal lover. We’ve not long bought a cave in Cuevas del Almanzora. Could do with some advice if I could pick your brains? 🙂

  4. Ant Ryan
    says:

    Wow cool place and another animal lover. We’ve not long bought a cave in Cuevas del Almanzora. Could do with some advice if I could pick your brains? 🙂

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