Bonjours Provence & Paris Enthusiasts

Christmas 2008

Oooo la la!

Mai Oui …I’m still talking about Christmas…and yes…you’ve missed Easter. But now is the time to rent, if you are lucky, this summer or better yet reserve for your fall or Christmas holiday. I return to France this Monday. My schedule is packed with appointments to visit new homes and apartments. I’ll be returning early May but will be posting new places as time permits…baring my morning cafe, afternoon nap and evening aperitif. In the interim, dream about living the Christmas traditions in 2008. A bientot!

REKINDLING Holiday 2007 Traditions. —You haven’t experienced Christmas in France until you’ve carried your Christmas tree through the streets to your apartment. Nor have you lived until you have….been in awe by the …annual Lights (this year brilliant blue), turn of the century merry go rounds, the hello of 3 kisses, the numerous creches, santons, french Christmas carols, roasted chestnuts and spiced hot wine, three white tablecoths (I guess for me that meant spill wine 3 times), holiday street markets, brocantes and special the Bouche de Noel gateau (cake), etc. ….Oooo la la….More on that in our next newsletter before I get carried away and forget to show you the new very special properties I have to rent. BTW…for those of you who want to get to France for Easter call before it is too late. Check these out: I’ve added a Mas Provencal in Piegon (Provence) and 3 new apartments in Paris (Rue Amelie, a lovely new Luxemborg apartment, Rue Grenelle). It’s still not too late to reserve your piece of heaven on earth for the next holiday in France.

These places will move quickly in Provence. Don’t be disappointed and end up in a hotel. You’ll love this little gem in Nyons. The Gîte Colombier, a tranquil hideaway in Vinsobres, La Para, a true vintage family villa in Nyons, and a refreshed historic house with two very private terraces tucked away in the hilltop village of Seguret, which is noted as one of the prettiest villages in France.

On this holiday trip, I’ve discovered several new places to savor wine. The absolute coolest place is in a tiny little caveau at the foot of the ruined chateau in Chateauneuf de Pape. Be careful…don’t get up in the moment or you’ll be shipping 2 cases of the “best” Châteauneuf du Pape” from Cave du Verger Des Papes to your home. No problem (no Vat tax). Save 20%. And…the more cases you buy, the rate is flat for imports. Ah…sooooooo good. Magnifique. If I only had a little duck or foie gras. I hear from the manager that he will have another cave open in Gigondas in the spring. My next stop in April is Gigondas.

For those of you who have stopped by this site before you’ll find that we are adding more and more Accommodations in Provence: B&B, villas and houses. I also have PARIS apartments …at very affordable prices. If you need a car, the Kemwell Car company is an excellent car rental company that offers Guaranteed Lowest Car Rental Prices and a Free Cell with your car rental.

If you share a passion for Provence, as my husband and I, you will find some very useful information. We fell in love with France, specifically Provence, a couple of decades or so ago and have learned so much since our first adventure that we would like to share with you. Our next newsletter will be about buying into a family owned property. ..our latest experience. Learn about le sindicate.

PROVENCE: For those of you who are new to Provence, it is situated in one of the most beautiful and central European locations. By TGV (trains), you can be in Paris, Italy, Spain or Portugal in about three hours. By car, in less than an hour, you can be soaking up sun on some of the most beautiful Mediterranean beaches along the Cote d’Azur. The more eastward you head toward Italy, the more likely the coast will be referred to as the Riviera. The region covers an area of over 30,000 sq km (18,650 sq miles) with a population of over 4 million people.

Many many years ago, Provence was a quiet and idyllic spot, but today, Provence is where the many Americans and many northern French go for their summer vacations. For many of the French, it is the location of choice to live and work. Because much of France has not lost its Provençal charm, tradition and conservativeness, Americans and other nationalities have found this part of the world to be engaging.

This part of France is recognized as having the best of climates. With over 333 days of sunshine, it is a paradise in all seasons. If you have a passion for skiing or hiking, nothing can beat the snow-peaked lower Alps which in the east descend to the most beautiful trails ending near the sea’s edge. These same trails can take one almost to the Rhone. In the center of this beautiful mass of terrain, the exciting and wild plateaus are sliced by the breathtaking Grand Canyon du Verdon. If you love to camp, the coastlands has many dense forests that exude the fresh scent of pines, eucalyptus and a never-ending collection of herbs. History, art, culture, tradition, ahhh and let us not forget why we have a driving passion for France. Layering over all that is beautiful in the landscape and culture, is the best food, wine and more interesting and loving people in the world. I can tell you so many stories … I just don’t know where or when to start.

But first to the matter at hand. This website will present to you “un plat du jour” of why France should be on your list on places to go … and return to … year after year. Once we get our Message Board up and running, we’d love to include some of your favorite, wine routes, seaside villages, recipes, or whatever you think our readers would like to hear.

As we develop this site further, we will be updating the “how to” do on what we have done, ie buy our own little “pied a terre”. Check out our site. I’m sure find some very interesting links to a lot of information. If you need some info on what is not here, just send me an email.

Bien Amicalement,

Carol

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