Would you care for a job building caravans such as these? What about opening a franchise carpentry shop as the official U.S. builder for Les Roulottes du Travers, the company that restores and builds gypsy caravans in the Czech Republic?
This company has actually been busy working their magic on retro-gypsy caravans since the mid-1990s, after the company's owner, Kees Hoekstra, pursuing a childhood fantasy, purchased and restored one in 1992 for himself. It took him 20 weekends to restore his first historic caravan, after which he opened his shop. Now the companies is pursuing the possibility of expanding to the United States since shipping costs from Europe are too high to allow for any but the wealthiest U.S. buyers to consider owning one.
But let's take a look at a two samples of the company's work.
Let's look at the interiors of two wagons, which are nearly identical. The first has the yellow awnings and shutters. The other is done in a more subtle tan color.
You can't restore beauty without wonderful craftsmanship, and here you can see that an excellent Czech craftsmanship extends to the quality of the painting.
This living room is so lavish, you could not be blamed for being doubtful this was a mobile caravan.
This is the left side of the same room. You can see the bed spread in the background.
Imagine this as the home to a gypsy, who happened to beg, borrow, or even steal this bed and drag it to his caravan for himself.
This almost looks like an outdoor patio, but it's the living room of the second gypsy caravan. The shot faces the front door. The feature to notice is near the open door, to the left. That's the cooking stove and oven.
This is the small wood stove in the same living room as the previous photo. The little shrine behind the stove is a great touch, reminiscent of the gypsy culture.
This is the table and arm chair in the caravan with the tan awning. The interior is dominated by the dark, ruby red color.
Can you even find window hardware in the United States that looks like this? This handle is a close up look at one of the windows in the caravan with the tan awning.
Neither of these caravans has indoor plumbing, so bathroom facilities are nonexistent. Even water for cooking is brought in manually. So, you park where you can enjoy the woods fully, or you have access to plumbing nearby. This is truly a caravan for camping and not exactly part of the RV culture, as envisioned in the United States. But is this roughing it? Not with luxurious digs like this, it isn't.