About Only Provence

Our Staff

How it Began

Named a Top 10 Villa Rental Company for Fodor's Travel
Top 10 Villa Rental Companies

Many years ago we left our lives in the US to spend a year in Provence. We quickly figured out that one year would simply not be enough to truly experience what Provence has to offer. We bought the Mas de Gancel, a neglected farmhouse outside of Aix en Provence and spent the following 6 years truly living. While our young children went to local village schools, we painstakingly renovated our house and vineyard, learned the language, met a wonderful group of friends, and explored all corners of an area so incredibly rich in culture and heritage. In 2007 we returned to the US—wanting to continue our love affair with the region by sharing it with visitors, we founded Only Provence. Only Provence has now become one of the area’s leading boutique villa rental agencies.

- John & Lydia Dean

US-Based Operations

Only Provence is directed by an Atlanta-based staff.

Stan Smith
Vice President
Stan Smith

A focus on customer satisfaction and relationship-building has always brought Stan the most joy. His experience in the operational process and customer relations lends itself perfectly to managing the administration process at Only Provence. In 2018, Stan was promoted to Vice President. Sports are a big part of Stan’s life and alongside playing tennis and golf, he enjoys coaching children in baseball. Stan loves cooking, traveling and spending time with friends and family.

Ingrid Smith
Client Relations - Vacation Rental
Ingrid Smith

Ingrid has worked in a variety of fields from environmental education, public programming, PR and non-profit management. Her professional career path has always been led by a passion and focus upon personal interactions and connectivity between client and industry. In her spare time, Ingrid enjoys the outdoors (hiking or kayaking), spending quality time with her family, and traveling to experience new places, cultures, and people.

Provence-Based Consultants


Gilles Combarieu
Product Development
Gilles Combarieu

Gilles spent much of his professional career in Public Relations within France’s Air Force. Born in the South West of France, he has always enjoyed learning new cultures and sharing his own. Gilles is our local advisor for marketing aspects. He is helping us to maintain a high-quality offer for the benefit of our customers, providing key data for our website and keeps us always updated on last trends in Provence and South of France. Gilles loves sports and is also a talented mason.

Louise Combarieu
Chefs and Tours
Louise Combarieu

Louise is Danish citizen but has lived in Provence for more than 20 years. She has held a variety of positions in her career yet has always had a love for nature and cooking. After working in a real estate agency for several years, Louise helped a friend who was starting home catering business. This ignited her desire to share her passion for cuisine with those exploring the region. Louise has since developed a vibrant network of the best chefs and tours in Provence which she loves sharing with clients at Only Provence.

Sandra Delesvaux
Provence Ground Team
Sandra Delesvaux

Sandra brings many years experience to the table working within a luxury hotel brand in Paris, managing all aspects of tour operator and European agency business to business relationships. Sandra relocated to Provence six years ago and has continued her professional career within real estate and villa rental. Sandra works alongside Hervé, providing up-to-date information for our website (photos), managing all facets of quality control, owner, and customer experience.

Hervé Sabat
Provence Ground Team
Hervé Sabat

After a long career in the catering and restaurant business in Paris, Hervé fell in love with the Luberon region over twenty years ago. He moved to the area and opened a hotel in Gordes, spending his time sharing the region’s beauty with visitors. Hervé works alongside Sandra, providing up-to-date information for our website (photos), and managing all facets of quality control, owner, and customer experience.

Jumping the Picket Fence

In her book "Jumping the Picket Fence," Lydia Dean writes about their experiences raising a family, building a business in Provence, and later combining the love of travel with giving back. From magical and entertaining to painfully raw and unsettling, Jumping the Picket Fence shows us how to put fear aside, peel away all that insulates us, and listen to our inner selves. The book ultimately becomes less about what the author has done in her own life and more about what each of us can do to explore our own dreams and jump our own fences.

"Jumping the Picket Fence" is available Amazon, Amazon.uk, and Amazon.Fr.


 

Contact us: +1 (404) 806-2278 | info@only-provence.com