In this issue -
Châteaux by Invitation
This issue's Featured Bed & Breakfast
Our featured Château Rental
[PLEASE REMEMBER THAT ALL UNDERLINED ITEMS THROUGHOUT THIS TEXT ARE
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by Invitation Only
Châteaux by Invitation Only - Immerse yourself in the very private world of French aristocracy as the private guests of Comte and Comtesse de Vanssay, the 20th generation to have resided at Chateau de La Barre, surrounded by a 100-acre private park with fragrant gardens at the entrance to the famous Loire Valley.
This family château achieves a harmonious balance between refined, understated luxury, and modern comfort. In the reception rooms and bedrooms, precious XVIIIth century furnishings are brought to life by luscious designer fabrics reflecting the warm hospitality and joie de vivre prevalent throughout.
Guy and Marnie open up a way of life for their guests, with exclusive receptions at private châteaux and gardens of their region, where 600 years of the rich cultural history of a family and a country are entwined.
During your 5- to 6-night (6- to 7-day) stay, which depends upon options available and selected, you will be hosted by at least five of the owners themselves for exclusive receptions and their private châteaux, gardens and clubs. These visits will include:
There is so much more to each day's itinerary, we do not have space to cover it all here. But, here is a detailed description of Day 1 of the Tour. . . the others are just as exciting:
Day 1: Chartres and arrival at Chateau de La Barre
English-speaking chauffeur pick up at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport
to Chateau de La Barre (a 2-hour drive), via Chartres cathedral.
On to Château
de Montmirail, XIIth-XVIIth century, former residence of Louis XIV's daughter.
Château de La Barre by Comte and Comtesse, Guy and Marnie de Vanssay.
Tour of the Château with Guy de Vanssay.
Informal wine and cheese tasting supper served in the pièce à feu by the monumental XIVth century fireplace.
Subsequent days of the Tour will include shopping at Poncé's artisanal glassblower and ceramic artist, followed by lunch at Comte & Comtesse de Malherbe's Chateau de Poncé; an English breakfast before departing on the path of the St Jacques of Compostella pilgrimage followed by a visit to the unique XIth century Romanesque Byzantine chapel, St. Gilles of Montoire; an evening at Château de La Barre including a Grand Siècle Dinner, beginning with Champagne cocktail in the ornate Grand Salon, decorated for the marriage of the Marquis de Vanssay in 1778, followed by a five-course dinner with two different wines, then coffee and brandy; one afternoon a visit to the old city of Le Mans and entering a time tunnel discovering this 'Plantagenet City', the birthplace of Henri II of England, with its Gallo-roman walls (the largest remaining in France), surrounding its myriad of medieval streets all beautifully restored; a departure from the terrace of Château de Valmer in a Montgolfière hot air balloon over the Loire; a shopping day in Paris and lunch at the exclusive Jockey Club, only accessible to life-standing members of the French aristocracy, followed by a chauffeured visit with your personal shopper for antiques and fashions and visits to museums.
As you can see, there many things included in each day that the average tourist would not have the opportunity to experience. For complete details, schedules of upcoming tours, a daily itinerary and prices, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and put 'Invitation' in the subject line.
[Photos are property of château owners. All rights reserved.]
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an online video magazine for French learners who wish to improve their
French Quiz 108
Where are we?
the building and the city where it is located.
first person whose email is received with the correct answer
Send your answer by email to email@example.com
answer to last month's Quiz at the end of this newsletter.
[Photo © 1993-2011 Cold Spring Press. All Rights Reserved.]
Bed & Breakfast:
This is the member of our site closest to Mediterranean Spain...a wonderful stopping-off point between the two countries and an even better French vacation destination. Spectacular views of the Pyrénées will add so much to your stay in uncrowded and tranquil Roussillon. Not only can you enjoy the luxury of their fine bed and breakfast accommodations, but several gîtes were recently completely redecorated for weekly self-catering stays.
and hostess will see to all your comforts and tell you about the history
of and attractions in the region. You will find breakfast delightful
if you choose to stay in the château, and you will find shopping
for essentials easy in the nearby town of Prades if you rent one of the
Castell Rose is not only a comfortable bed and breakfast with lovely en suite bedrooms, but it also offers guests the convenience of a sparkling swimming pool and fine tennis court. If you are determined to explore the region, you can easily visit the historic towns and cities nearby such as Perpignan, Carcassonne, Montpellier, Toulouse or Barcelona.
Please visit Castell Rose on our site today, and reserve your holiday accommodations with them soon. You'll not regret staying in this interesting region of France nor making Castell Rose your choice.
[Photos courtesy of Evelyne & Alex Waldvogel, Castell Rose. © 2011 All Rights Reserved.]
Villes et Villages de France
. . we hope to tempt you to visit these marvelous places
We think that the back of this church as shown in the photo is far more beautiful than the front. A twelfth century Romanesque masterpiece, the church was designated a Monument Historique in 1926.
The tiny hamlet of Blond is near Bellac in the Haute-Vienne département of the Limousin region, and it has given its name to the Monts de Blond ~ the local small range of mountains that is the home to an incredible collection of dolmens (two or more upright stones with a capstone) and menhirs (large standing stones). Huge boulders were washed down the hillsides by erosion and floods, making it possible for prehistoric man to create the megaliths.
If you decide to visit this fascinating and tranquil part of France, lovely accommodations can be found at Château du Fraisse with an incredible history of its own ~ the same family has lived in the château for 800 years!
[Photo of the
church at Blond: © 2005-2011 Cold Spring Press. All Rights Reserved.]
Our Featured Château Rental:
Brittany's Manoir la Chaussée
The lush green landscapes of Brittany are never forgotten; perhaps that's why we return time after time when we are seeking natural beauty and tranquility. For those who want to spend quality time in a Breton place 'of their own' for a week or more, Manoir la Chaussée is the perfect choice. Known for its own spectacular Le Jardin Anglais, designed by Alan Mason, a leading English landscape designer, the estate contains more that 20,000 varieties of plants, some which are exotic and quite rare. Mason's garden at La Chaussée was the subject of a television series in Britain, so this property is quite famous!
The bedrooms are spacious and tastefully appointed with guests' comfort in mind. Bathrooms are new yet designed in keeping with the period of the Manoir. The salons, library and other common rooms are well appointed for total relaxation and enjoyment.
Perhaps most appealing, of course, are the gardens. Abundant flowers, specimen plantings, gentle streams and a lovely lake all add to the tranquility and charm of the Manoir. If you visit the Manoir's pages on our site, you will see just how spectacular the gardens are.
We hope that you will gather your friends and family for a get together in Brittany at Manoir la Chaussée very soon. It can comfortably accommodate up to 20 people in six guest rooms, two apartments with private entrances, and in the Guardian's House next to the Manoir. There is a hot tub spa, and the Manoir is convenient to golf, kayaking, fishing and sailing activities.
To obtain further details and booking information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and mention Chaussée in the subject line.
[Photo credits © 2011 Manoir la Chaussée All Rights Reserved.]
Dordogne Garden Tours
Domaine des Faures in the Dordogne is a B&B and weekly rental property only a few kilometers from the historic bastide village of Monpazier. Its English owners are now offering customized garden tours ~ French Garden Adventures ~ something everyone can enjoy during their next stay in France.
four tours offered: Scents and Sensations in June, late summer's
Fruitfulness tour (both seven-night tours), early spring's
Land Awakens tour mentioned below, and the Flowers and Festivals
tour in May ~ the last two can be four- or seven-night tours. The
photo on the left was taken at the private Château du Losse, near
the River Vézère, with its amazing box gardens ~ a château
that is included in three of the four tours. Jardin de Sardy,
displaying its refreshing water features, is a highlight of the Flowers
and Festivals tours.
In spring The Land Awakens tour includes time at Château d'Eyrignac with its ten acres of gardens and botanical walks. There is a spectacular topiary, garden rooms and a Japanese/Chinese garden. Château d'Eyrignac is also featured on the Flowers and Festivals Tour.
Included in the tour package are your rooms at the Domaine des Faures with both a welcome dinner and breakfast each morning, two lunches during the tour, and a restaurant farewell dinner at the end of your stay.
contact email@example.com for upcoming tour dates, availability and
prices. Please be sure to put Faures Gardens in the subject
photos for descriptions.
not be including an Easy Recipe this month.
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Answer to Quiz 107- Where Are We? from our Summer issue: