When Translation, Interpreting and Project Management Collide
November 25, 2016
Discover how our language and consultancy services helped our English client transform their uninhabited villa into a beautiful holiday home.
Don't worry, that's not how we left it...
At Bastian Contrarian, we don’t just get asked to provide proofreading, copywriting or translation services, we sometimes get more unusual requests too.
In fact, this summer, a private, English client contacted us for help on a big project: the renovation of a villa in Ostuni, in the Puglia region of Italy, that had been uninhabited for a good 8 years. They wanted the property cleared out, cleaned and up-and-running quickly, so they could start renting it out to tourists and use it as their family holiday home.
Not only did we directly oversee and coordinate the building and decorating works, we also had to find a permanent caretaker, cleaner and gardener to welcome guests and look after the upkeep of almost 4 acres of grounds.
This involved hunting down long-lost property deeds and cadastral documents; cleaning the water tank; fitting a new bathroom; arranging pest control and waste disposal; activating the electricity supply; testing and replacing electrical circuits; painting and waterproofing the exterior and interior of the property; taming the overgrown olive groves; furnishing the entire house, and much, much more – all in only 16 days!
You might well ask: “But what on earth has renovating a villa got to do with translation, interpreting and copywriting services?”
Well – apart from the fact we can't resist a challenge –, a profound knowledge of Italian and the ways of the local people is fundamental for the successful completion of such a daunting task with such a tight deadline. In fact, without an on-site Project Manager who could speak the language, it would have been literally impossible for our client to finish their dream project at all.
There were heaps of research to do, phone calls to make, e-mails to write and people to meet. We had to get quotes, liaise with surveyors, find builders, decorators, materials, furniture and suppliers quickly and coordinate all these different stages as seamlessly as possible, which all requires some nifty – and nail-biting – organisation and problem-solving skills.
You see, Sarah hasn't just worked as a translator and copywriter. She's had over two decades of experience working for a variety of start-ups, SMEs, multinationals and charity organisations (both in Italy and the UK) and she's also organised a host of art, design and PR events too, allowing us to be really flexible in the language and consultancy services we offer.
Couple this with 23 years' of experience living and working in Italy and our knowledge of legal translation and we’re well-equipped to provide a wide range of tailored language and project management services – and we’ll even get on a plane and help you through the process too!
So, if you need a bi-lingual Project Manager to help you set up your holiday home in Italy, get quotes, find suppliers, materials, legal documents, acquire planning permission, or anything else for that matter, just drop us a line and we’ll see what we can do.