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Camino Frances: Between Sarria and Portomarin (2.5km before Portomarin)
Casa Banderas is one of the oldest houses in the village - it is estimated the original construction being around 500 years old. It has been extended several times and the last addition to the property is a galleria added about a hundred years ago. From approximately 1985 to 2005 the house has stood empty until its sale by Eduviges Rodriguez Lopez to Gordon Bell and his family. That is when restoration work was started.
That first year, 2005, was a cleaning phase and an effort to make the house habitable. 2006 saw the completion of upgraded power supply, new borehole and water reticulation, toilets and sewerage, restoration of two bedrooms and the kitchen as well as the addition of a toilet and shower. Outside work included some concreting of the galleria, arranging the "garden" and laying a driveway.
The year 2007 also saw many positive improvements. The third bedroom was completed as well as the small lounge. The remaining plastering and filling of the gaps in the walls was completed using a wonderful machine and some local talent. The leaky old roof was replaced and some skylights added to let some much needed light into the centre of the house. Outside the walls and walkways have been all but completed and a garden started. In the coming year the house will be completed inside which centers mainly around the large front lounge. Also during this period, the pilgrim facilities will be constructed to enable stay over visitors. There are many plans and much work needs to be done before completion.
The restoration took several more years to complete and in 2012 it was ready to accept Pilgrims. Gordon and his family ran the Albergue until the end of 2015. That is when Gordon developed health issues that kept him from being able to run the Albergue anymore.