Archive for March, 2011

March 30, 2011

Some news from France XXXII

Well the rain came back last night and today is back to sunny and cloudy periods, temps are seasonal spring so nice, the perfect time to visit France !

The Woody Allen New Orleans Jazz band is coming with the cineaste in tow. It will be April 2ne at the Grand Rex 75002, webpage http://www.legrandrex.com/

The new hotel Shangri-la is making its sounds around Paris already with a grand restaurant inside, L’Abeille or the Bees.It will be specialise in French cuisine with seafood at its main best. I did not eat but was there yesterday and the service and staff are very pros and friendly, something to keep in mind. Webpage http://www.shangri-la.com/fr/property/paris/shangrila/dining/restaurant/restaurantlabeille

And plenty of culinary action to help support the people of Japan in their disasters, many around Paris but per Le Figaro these are tops, Bistrot Paul-Bert , 18, rue Paul-Bert (75011) special dinner on April 4 all proceeds to Japanese Red Cross.  The Bar Lindbergh at the Hotel Radisson Blu ,16, bd Haussmann, (75009) will have a drink cocktail name Hope or (yuzu,jasmin and rose)  with 60% of sale price going to the Japan Red Cross, the drink cost 10€ all during the month of April. Until April 9 the Cafe de la Paix , Place de l’Opéra, (75009) will give for each breakfast buffet ordered 5€  to the Embassy of Japan who is charge of giving aid. Finally many restaurants  like the Pére Fouettard (75001), Chez Eux (75007), Flottes (75001),L’Evasion (75008…)  are mobilising on the side of Chef Hisayuki Takeuchi of the Maison Kaiseki, 7 rue André-Lefebvre (75015)  to collect funds for the victims. 

For relaxation in Paris ,La Voie du tai-chi   will have it Vice Champion of Europe give courses at al levels in the Jardin du Luxembourg, webpage http://www.lavoiedutaichi.fr/ . By the blvd de la Villette the Centre Génération Tao  offers courses see webpage http://www.centre-tao-paris.com/ , by rue St Jacques on the 5th the Rasa Yoga Rive Gauche  offers courses as well with webpage http://www.rasa-yogarivegauche.com/

If you are stress in Paris what? well some do, Be Relax offers relaxation exercises and massages with English speaking personnel ,webpage http://www.berelax.com/En/ , and for help carrying those small children no need to break your back ,try Familib with webpage http://www.location-de-poussette.fr/

If you want a day to relax with a great view of Paris come to the parc des Buttes-Chaumont (75019) was around there last week and it is superb. The view with a pause at Rosa Bonheur2, allée de la Cascade, webpage at http://www.rosabonheur.fr/ , the climb to the Temple de la Sibylle . The view over Paris is romantically gorgeous at the top of the île du Belvédère, however be prepare in summer heat to have a large crowd there.

A place for arts, see the  Monet-Rodin duo while walking the marvelous gardens of the Musée Rodin ,the go inside to see the manuscripts, documents, and portraits/busts that associate these two great men, the painter and the sculptor friends.Musée Rodin, 79, rue de Varenne (75007). Until May 1 2011.  http://www.musee-rodin.fr/

Something dear to me the price of real estate is going up and up in France, and especially on the Paris region. The average rental is 17,8€ per sq meter in ile de France Paris region. while only 10,30€ in Aquitaine, and 12,30€ in the cote d’azur. The price of buying property is over the roof in Paris with the 6éme at 11120€ per sq meter, 4éme 10500€, 5éme 9530€, 1éme 9410€ ,8éme 9030€, and my beloved 16éme only at 8430€ per sq meter. A rise of 21% from 2009-2010. These couple with a slight rise in the fees of Notaires or notary public that here handle the real estate transaction of from 0 to 6500€ 4%, 6500-17000€ 1,65%, 17000-60000€ 1,10%, and over 60000€ 0,825%. 

France tied Croatia in a friendly soccer/football match yesterday, and Spain beat Lithuania for the European Championshiop qualifier 1X3 in Kaunas. Real Madrid beat Valencia in the European basketball championship quarter finals, so its ahead 2 games to 1.

Ok last for sure, I will be in Fontainebleau this coming thursday ,work details but wife is not working so we will be having our day there in her native soil neighborhood. Cheers

March 28, 2011

Some news from France XXXI

Well the Spring season is strongly underway with todays high of 17°C and sunny. Nice ride on the roads around Paris . The temps will go as high as 23°C by Saturday and early week in April some rains is announced according to Meteo France.

Recent regional elections in France have left the Left ahead with  35.75%, UMP the ruling party now got  20.24% ,and the right FN got 11,73% … with a whopping 55% abtention !!! Versailles area stay right with the UMP way ahead.

What started as a reporting way to show its quartier of Pigalle by Philippe Cochinard has now turn into a 21 district Paris Web TV  where you can see the news happening in those districts or neighborhoods, mostly tourist areas, such as Pigalle, Montmartre,  Saint-Germain, Bastille, Champs-Elysées, Mouffetard, Opéra, Belleville, Bastille, Tolbiac, Invalides, etc . You can see the news here http://www.pariswebtvquartier.fr/index1.php

Next April 8 is last day of school for kids in the Ile de France region, vacation for Easter until April 25th, so kids on the roads be careful. However, my kids go on school trips from April 4-8th ,one to the Alps and the other to Normandy ,then Easter vacation, what a nice life Lol!!

If you want to know what classification is your hotel ,B&B or vacation rental in France go to this page Atout en France in French ,official govt webpage, and key in the name on the right bracket that says “Rechercher un hébergement classé”, the webpage ishttps://www.classement.atout-france.fr/

If you want to see web TV in Madrid then come for MadridiariocriticoTV, that will be known under the letter code MDCTV: all you need to know about Madrid, Spain, and it will be in Spanish of course first,webpage http://mdctv.adnstream.com/

In Madrid, the Palace of Cibeles has re open after 100 yrs !! remodeled open this Sunday and will be free until July 27th 2011. It has 44.600 square meters in 8 floors! The palace once the seat of Spain national post office will have in floor  -1,an auditorium of 2 150 sq meters with capacity for 296 spectators ideal for camara music as well in the floor 1 a Salon or room of expositions of 1 400 Sq meters ; floors 2,3,4 will be available for expositions . Also,  a beautiful Galería de Cristal,or gallery of mirrors with a patio garden linking the streets of Alcala and Montalban. Source newspaper MadridDiario with these beautiful photo collection one inside the Palace at http://www.madridiario.es/galeria/palacio-cibeles-inauguracion-abre-puertas-reforma-centrocentro-exposicion-correos-1/46669.html ,and the other looking out from the palace at http://www.madridiario.es/galeria/palacio-cibeles-inauguracion-vistas-reforma-centrocentro-exposicion-correos-1/46676.html

More improvement in the metro of Madrid with the extention of Line 9 to Mirasierra. one of the longest line for 38 kms linking 28 stations; this will be the first phase of the extras here,  the second phase will continue with a second station at street Calle Costa Brava that will link by a tunnel the 1,4 kms from the new station at Mirasierra to the Cercanias or suburbian lines C7, C8 ,and C10. Source in Spanish MadridPress.

The European football qualifications continue on March 29 with Spain playing at Lithuania, the game is in doubt as the field is in very bad condition and the Spanish federation has asked UEFA to inspect it for proper conditions before the game is played. France plays the same day but a friendly match against Croacia at the Stade de France in St Denis,north of Paris.

The always interesting NCAA basketball tournament in the USA is coming to its Final Four with lots of surprise, only Kentucky can claim of pedigree the others could be in for a surprise Connecticut, Butler, and VCU( Virginia Commonwealth University). It will be from April 4 at Atlanta GA . I have to go for the underdogs VCU!!!

And the main city in my last county in the USA ,Broward County Florida, the city of Fort Lauderdale is 100 years old this year, celebrations abound, see the local newspaper Sun-Sentinel  here http://www.sun-sentinel.com/features/centennial/fl-lauderdale-riverfest-20110328,0,4358903.story Happy Birthday FLL !!! from your old neighbor of Miramar ::)

And lastly ,was walking around the area of Paris 19 last week around Villette, Jaurés, and Crimée so took some pictures because its one area of Paris on the up and up, hightly renovated and great interest for locals and visitors alike. See next post. Cheers and have a great week.

March 25, 2011

Some news from France XXX

Well spring is in the air indeed, temps today as high as 21°C registered in my area of Versailles. For the next few days into early April we will have about the same from the lows of 8°C in the morning to as high as 18°C. Good things are coming our way.

The new thingy in town is the Nuits Parisiennes that will be on April 1, and will have several presentation around the city of Paris in art form. From 18h to 22h. ArtParis is sponsoring amongst others.  The sites will be Hôtel Le Meurice, le Village Royal,Fondation d’Entreprise Ricard, L’Eclaireur, Artcurial, Espace Culturel Louis Vuitton, Hôtel Royal Monceau, and Villa L, more info rmation in the special webpage here in English  http://www.artparis.fr/2011/en/projects/nuitsparisiennes

A survey by the firm Entreprise & Prévention has found out the French prefer to drink alcoholic beverages at home. The general breakdown is 80% at home and 20% outside. The ones at your own home comes out on top with 49%, with family,friends or colleagues is at 31%, in a bar is 5%, discotheque is 4%, restaurant or brasserie 4%,and in a Café 4%. Just fine with me and my thoughts. The same survey talks about the purchase of 74,7 liters of alcoholic beverages per household in 2010.

Something renovated and spruce up in an usual place, and still great cuisine with oyster is Le Bar à Huîtres112, boulevard du Montparnasse, 75014. Tél. +33 01 43 20 71 01. Open every day with three other addresses in Paris, webpage  http://www.lebarahuitresmontparnasse.com/

For the music lover there is the exhibition of Georges Brassens ou la liberté”  at the Cité de la Musique , Parc de la Villete,75019 until August  21 2011. webpage http://www.cite-musique.fr/minisites/1103_brassens/index_en.aspx

work on the RER B from CDG airport will have delays for three weekends from March 26/27, April 2/3, and April 9/10. du to work on the line B the circulation of train will be stop between Aulnay-sous-Bois and the airport according to the SNCF.

Tonite there is 133 millions euros to win in the Euro Million lottery lol! I am in !!!

Also, tonite there is France vs Luxembourg and Spain vs Czech Republic for the European Championship of football/soccer. France game is at 21h local time.

In the Plaza Oriente in Fuenlabrada,Madrid soon to open the biggest Chinese shopping center in Europe, it is located in the commercial park Cobo Calleja, which already has 377 firms with Chinese management with 3,000 workers of which  60% are Spanish .

There will be a mini marathon for new entrepreneurs in Madrid . All division from 14 yrs old and up are allowed, the race is for 5 kms and will start at 9h30 on April 9 from the  Paseo de Coches in the Retiro park or Parque del Buen Retiro.  More info here http://www.admarathon.es/carrers11/p_ruta/cemprendedors.pdf

The second round of regional elections will be held next Sunday in France, the race has a increase in the voting percentages from the far right the Front National or FN.

Next round of aid from the EU to Portugal that after Greece, Ireland is next. Spain is quivering on the border possibly next. Its historical for the south of Europe to get more aid, it always has been from the rich North. However, this time there is still the EU to come to the rescue. It will be balance out.

More round of democracy calling from the North Africa,and Middle East, newest one is Syria. All of the best of  luck to the democratic voices and may the already democracies help more. Cheers

The islands  in and around Paris, most know about Ile de la Cité, and Ile Saint Louis in central Paris. However, do you know Ile de Chatou in my area of Yvelines dept 78 (Impressionists territory and I was by there yesterday ) , Ile de l’Abreuvoir at Champigny-sur-Marne bordering the river Marne in dept 94 Val du Marne, between the 16éme and 15éme arrondissements, the Ile aux Cygnes, old digue of Grenelle, its an artificial island of 890 meters long ( 2937 ft) and 11 meters wide (36.3 ft), in the bois de Vincennes you have the lake Daumesnil , and it is link by two the ile de Reuilly and the Ile de Bercy,  famous too by impressionists painters you have the Ile de la Jatte or also call Ile de la Grande Jatte share by the towns of Neuilly-sur-Seine and Levallois-Perret in dept 92 Hauts de Seine, the Ile de Puteaux long of 2 kms is shared by the towns of Puteaux and Neuilly-sur-Seine in dept 92 Hauts de Seine, the site of an old Renault car manufacturing plant and today waiting rehabilitation sits at Boulogne-Billancourt, dept 92, the ile de Seguin, first a military camp and today a regional public park sits at Issy-les-Moulineaux, the Ile Saint-Germain, and last the Ile d’Amour is an island of the river Marne on the limits of the town of Bry-sur-Marne, dept 77 Seine et Marne.

And well have a happy weekend I need to get out and see those French playing the Luxembourguish in football/Soccer. Cheers

March 19, 2011

Some news from France XXVIIII

Ok so it seems the cold spell has come back, temps in the single digits again and not too much sun; oh well officially winter is until March 21th but not exact science. However,again Meteo France predicts temps in the high digits by end of month up to 16°C and sunny days.

Parking a car in Paris will be more expensive. Not only all the laws to make the use of the car less viable will be hit with another downer, higher parking fees. Eventually it will be a city of like London with area congestion fees and all, lol!!! and I love my car, will be in by the Tour Eiffel tomorrow mornings.  The hourly charges of 3,60€ already in the districts/arrondissements Ier, IIe, and parts of the VIIIe, IXe, XVIe , XVIIe with the highest charges in Paris will be extended to the totality of the first 7 arrondissements 1-7. In  Montmartre, the north of the  XIIIe and great part of the XIIe.  will have the rates increase from 1,20 €, to  2,40 € !. The arrondissements XVe, XIXe and XXe  will remain at 1,20 € per hour.

The before mention chateau in my blog Chantilly after some renovations will reopen its season of events. The Grandes Ecuries have all been redone its roofs to the original designs from 1721. The jardin a la Anglaise or English garden will continue to have renovation work done until 2012 , and the oldest section in the castle dating from 1718 the Salon de la Musique has been entirely renovated to its origins. All ready for the event Les Feux de Chantilly next June 17-18. webpage for the castle http://www.chateaudechantilly.com/fr/

If you want to be close to Spain in Paris, then one of the best in town is the El Burro Blanco or the white donkey at 79 rue  du Cardinal Lemoine 75005. richly decorated in one of the oldest buildings in the district, live dancing and flamenco music very good. webpage here http://burroblanco.fr/ .Another typical that sponsors soccer/football team in corporate league in Paris and sports TV of games in a popular area and one of my favorites is Toro Borracho or drunken bull ! 90 Rue de Charonne 75011. webpage is here http://eltoroborracho.free.fr/ .For the authentic outside of Spain you wont go wrong/ Enjoy y olé olé and olé.

Some of the pros and cons of living in Paris was shown in the French magazine Nouvel Observateur TV guide current issue 19-26 Mars 2011.  First the good reasons to stay, 1) a rich cultural fire power, 2) stay away from me city attitude that is their right, 3) Love is in the air, the city of lovers and romanciers. Now the good reasons to leave the city, a) leave an expensive apartment loaded with businesses all around you.b) leave the noice and pollution, c) totally disconnected from nature all cement and stone.  There this is from the Parisiens so what about you?

Something jazzy how about Scott Hamilton at the Caveau de la Huchette,5 rue de la Huchette 75005 March 21 and 23 from 22h for 1à-14€ admission. Their webpage http://www.caveaudelahuchette.fr/

Musée des Arts Décoratifs has an exhibition until May 8, 2001 of wooden toys over the times good for kids, call “Vilac 100 ans de jouets en bois”  Webpage  http://www.lesartsdecoratifs.fr/english-439/accueil-710/une-715/english-439/exhibitions/current-events#vilac

Also until May 8 2011 at the musée Jeu de Paume on the jardin des Tuileries, there is an exposition entitled ” Sociéte Réaliste Empire State Building” . webpage http://www.jeudepaume.org/

For something different to do in Paris ,why not a visit to the museum of the Police, Musée de la Police, it is located in the hote de la police of the 5éme  arrondissement , 4, rue de la Montagne Sainte-Geneviève fourth floor, and started there by commissaire Lépine in 1909 . It traces the history of the Paris police from the 17C to our days. It is open Mondays to Fridays from 9h -17h, Saturdays from 10h-17h  and from April 2nd will be from 10h30 to 17h30 . The police webpage for the prefect is in French but has more info, http://www.prefecturedepolice.interieur.gouv.fr/La-prefecture-de-police/Service-de-la-memoire-et-des-affaires-culturelles/Le-musee-de-la-prefecture-de-police

To speak about wines, my favorite subject well a young men from Bordeaux has just created a site for socialising all the wine lovers as well as winegrowers to come and mingle together,  Vivre le Vin or enjoy the wine  this is the webpage http://www.vivrelevin.com/

And speaking of wines, do not forget the VINEXPO again this year from June 19-23  at Bordeaux of course! The international date for wine lovers all over the world. There are for the trade pros but if you make arrangement with your local distributor they can provide an access badge ::) . The webpage  http://www.vinexpo.com/en/

Before that here is another good I wont missed it for the world, the Le Salon de La Revue du vin de France, at the Bourse de Paris, Palais Brongniart, metro Bourse on May 14-15 2011, 10h-19h about 250 winegrowers from the best in France will be there as well as some internationals. This event is sponsored by the magazine of which I am a subscriber and there is a link in my blogroll at the bottom. You can charge your pass online so ready when in Paris in those days;  Anyway webpage here http://www.larvf.com/,billetterie-salon-rvf-2011,12836,1117341.asp

Tonite is France vs Wales in VI Nations rugby for the honor as neither can win the tournament. Real Madrid has advance to the quarterfinals of the League of Champions and will play next Tottenham Spurs next April 5 and 13 with Real Madrid playing away on the 13 and home on the 5th. European Nations qualifiers coming are  Spain vs Czech Republic on March 25th and Lithuania on the 29th. France vs Luxembourg and Croatia respectively on same dates.

Have a great rest of weekend everybody Cheers ::)

March 16, 2011

Some news from France XXVIII

ok so spring is in the air temps today of 17°C very nice with a tad of sun coming out. Time to do some gardening in my free afternoon. Cut some pine trees along my fence given to the forest! Its great to have this weather again. And it will be like this for the next few days.

Tonite big match Real Madrid vs O Lyon in the Champions league,(Canal+ 20h45) be there for sure! The Real Madrid needs to finally get by the eight finals of the competition and their nemesis lately Lyon is lurking on. They  have a goal advantage away goal and playing at home in Madrid so no excuses. WE WON 3X0!!! and advance to quarter finals Yes!!!

There is an expo Vision d’Egypt at the Bibliothéque Nationale  salle Richelieu ,until June 5 2011. The Egyptian art and Arab art on display by the collection of Emile Prisse d’Avennes.  He became an egyptologue ,archeologist, and ethnology expert with special interest in Egypt where he spent two tours one in 1827 to 1844, and another from 1858 to 1860.  Library located at rue de Richelieu, best metro quatre septembre or Bourse line 3.

We are doing gaufres for tonite, the wife that is ::) these little mouthful are hard to find in Paris but a favorite of the family. You need to go in Paris to Angelina, Carette or l’Avant Comptoir  to find some good ones, and then home made are still better. Other good ones are found at Coupole (75014) ,and L’Absinthe, and au Pain Quotidien in Paris. And the famous one with the vanilla from Madagascar and special of the Nord, Lille to be exact has come to Paris, Meert, 16, rue Elzévir, 75003  Tél. +33  01 49 96 56 90. this is the webpage to entice you to taste http://www.meert.fr/

Some new French expressions to note and it changes with the times always ,really so you thought you knew French huh, n’est pas ce pas vrai mes amis ::)  When we say  Avoir la Barry White (is to have the voice coerse the next morning of partying) , and Se faire flûter (is to be abuse of you make a fool of you), Bling, à composer ( create something  chic),  Un lieu surstaffé (there is nobody but clients), Baronner (to tell the verbs derive from the place you frequent), Le triple off (you are more off than off the record or way off), and Avoir une vitalité hybride (to have multiple love relationships). cheers ::)

Madrid is expanding its metro system , the Line 2 passing by my old neighborhood has grown with four more stations reaching Las Rosas ! including La Almudena, Alsacia,Avenida de Guadalajara, and Las Rosas see the metromadrid webpage http://www.metromadrid.es/es/viaja_en_metro/red_de_metro/lineas_y_horarios/linea02.html

The situation in Japan is uncertain too many media talking and too many reports, but the nuclear thread is real. France has reinforce its security measures but another media rethoric, the incident is in Japan. Sarkozy is losing ground in the next elections, so anything goes. Now even the son of Khadafy the Lybian dictator is claiming he provided campaign funds to Sarkozy, what a shame if found to be true.

this month the bullfight season opens in Spain, those matadores ahead are José Tomás, El Juli, Juan Mora ,and Morante de la Puebla. olé.

Eurostar will open reservation for the London Olympic games from end of June 2011.

The world tourist fair open today at Porte de Versailles everything you want to know about tourism is here at the No 1 in the world France ! http://www.lemondeaparis.com/exhibit/

A new concept in hostals is already open in Paris, St Christopher’s  with plans for a brasserie restaurant by the Rotonde de la Villette in July/August next and another hostal by Gare du Nord planned, webpage for the current place by the Canal de la Villette rue de Crimée is here http://www.st-christophers.co.uk/paris-hostels

Well until we read again ,stay safe and happy rest of the week, spring is in the air Cheers!

ps add on to my comments, I find it hard to believe that trying to write entries and found no pictures ,I dont like to do that but…Lately in doing my posts I realised my photos for Beauregard castle, Rambouillet, Tours ,and Geneva, Switzerland are no where to be found at home….well maybe do the post and found the excuse to go back and revisit these places huh…Lol! Great idea.

March 14, 2011

Some news from France XXVII

Well trying to get by in another lonely slow Monday in the office by La Defense. La vie est belle en France mes amis oui oui et oui. The temps are back to spring like weather with high of 16°C today and sunny. Wildly fluctuating between 3 and 18°C until the 22 March, couple days of rain otherwise between cloudy and sunny. per Meteo France of course.

As the price of gasoline is going up everywhere its time to remind myself that saving is needed , a few tips not to stop me from putting the pedal to the metal of course ::) The EU site tells you in English and all the languages of the European Union here http://www.savemorethanfuel.eu/uk/

Another wonderful event down the line but just be prepare for it is the Semaine du Goût or the the week of tasting, tasting galore all over France and into the region of Navarra in Spain, many restos come up with the Les Tables du Goût ,proposing formule menus with great pricing!  As well as shops for teaching the latest cooking recipes. The official webpage is at the page for locating restaurants in French, http://www.legout.com/la-semaine-du-gout/les-restaurants-semaine-du-gout

The national museum of antiquities located at the Chateau Saint Germain en Laye (Yvelines dept 78) is showing now the 13 ed of spring of poets or printemps des Poétes ,here http://www.musee-antiquitesnationales.fr/ and the coming events for April are here http://www.musee-antiquitesnationales.fr/homes/home_id20726_u1l2.htm

Due to the terrible earthquake affecting Japan, Air France is putting together some special rates for one way travel there. Taking time for my condolences to the victims of this terrible incident.

At the musée des Beaux-Arts at Tours you can see the expo ” Richelieu à Richelieu” , showcasing the grandeur of the castle decorated, and enlarge by the Cardinal of muskeeteers fame and power of France at the time.  The expo will run until June 13 2011, and the webpage for the centre region museums showing more is here http://www.musees.regioncentre.fr/Actualite/richelieu_ichelieu-2235.html?navID=&lang=&preprod=&idcat=B&idactualite=2235&mois=&iddateactualite=3543

a bit of history on the above it was in 1633AD that Richelieu made bring from all over Europe and Turkey wonders to France to be put in his castle at Richelieu, really the precursor of  Vaux-le-Vicomte, and Versailles. Unfortunately after the French revolution the castle was left in abandoned, items stolens and decayed and by 1835 stones sold by piece to merchants. It is left to museums such as those at Tours,Orleans, the local one at  Richelieu ,and the Louvre, for bring about the encounter with this beauty of the past. Where is Richelieu ? well its in the Loire of course just past Tours on the A10 direction Bordeaux exit sortie no 22 then the road N10 for cheaper tolls, then D960 following Chinon, Richelieu , viamichelin will get you there. By train to the gare de Chinon the bus TE for 20 mins to Richelieu or from gare de Tours take the bus H2 of the touraine network here http://www.tourainefilvert.com/

My favorite newspaper in France, Le Figaro is coming up with a restaurant guide as well, of course after so many years me following their recommendations, and my writing on resto/bars in Cityvox (link) they are now coming up with the follow up and bigger  guide 2011 already in bookstores in France. Online here but anywhere in France you can buy it when in town webpage http://selection.lefigaro.fr/article-les-meilleurs-restaurants-du-scope-2011—723.html

And if the Grand Palais expo was not enough or no time or were not here, the American inspired Mona Bismarck Foundation is showing  Gustave Courbet (master of realism), Location  Mona Bismarck Foundation, 34, avenue de New-York (75016) Tél. +33  01 47 23 38 88. open everyday except Sundays and Mondays from 12h to 18h30,until June 4th, webpage http://www.monabismarck.org/current.html

And last, we had a blast this past Saturday at SQY south of Versailles to celebrate at the bowling center http://www.bowlingstar.fr/ my  oldest son birthday 19. We had a blast with plenty of good drinks, great game of bowling, and many goodies in food and gifts with his brothers and friends.

Have a great week everyone Cheers !!!

March 11, 2011

Some news from France XXVI

Here we are just in front of another nice weekend, cool but sunny and pleasant all over. Temps are going back up, from 3°C to 16°C with some rainy days and some sunny days, so be prepared with rainjackets… I was on the 19éme arrondissement yesterday near Villette and it was wonderfully sunny and pleasant, the winter is leaving us and Paris is awake ::)

The big news around Paris is that another tower is in the making, with views over Paris from the 13éme arrondissement.  Its going to be not far from the Bibliothéque Nationale . The tower will have 180 meters high( 594 ft) and will be done by end 2013. It will have 44 floors ,and between 60-70K sq meters surface. The transportation in the area will be cover by the enlargement of the Tramway T3 , the extension of the metro line 10, and 14, plus an additional automatic metro line entering into the project Grand Paris. This is the most advance project in terms of finishing but there are other projects in the works such as in the quartier or neighborhood Batignolles in the heart of the 17éme arrondissement a tower of 180-200 meters will house the main judicial court or the “Tribunal de Grande Instance” and the Police, all pending choosing architect and dates. The same noises are heard about the project tower or Tour Triangle  in the 15éme arrondissement near porte de Versailles.  It will be all in glass and metal with a height of 180-200 meters too. The Grand Paris is a government project with the ministry of culture to enhance Paris in the 21C, the official site in French is at http://www.legrandparis.net/

You probably have heard the cost of gasoline/diesel is going up, well everywhere ,but here it was high already historically because of higher taxes, now is going thru the roof.  The regular gas SP95 octane has average 1,50 € per liter (about USGallon 7.71 USdollar). My diesel or gazole consumption has going up in a few months from 1,12e per liter to the current 1,33€ per liter or about 6.84 USdollar per US gallon( poor folks in Florida alarming because over there is about 2,49 for regular gasoline lol!!). The increase in car pooling has already seen a 16% raise in the last month.

The 4th adventure of Astérix and Obélix the French series that created a park a la Disney is coming out in october 17, 2012, entitled “God Save Britannia”. The actors playing the movie will be Edouard Baer and Gérard Depardieu for the two main characters invented by René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo. Catherine Deneuve  will play the queen of England, Fabrice Luchini will be Julius César, as well as Valérie Lemercier,the Québec born  Charlotte Le Bon, Guillaume Gallienne and Vincent Lacoste will be part of the team for the movie;heavy hitters here !

Many activities around PARIS for the Saint Patrick Irish celebration on March 17.  You can see my entry Expats in Paris for many pubs where the best action will be here https://paris1972.wordpress.com/2011/02/08/expats-in-paris-all-over-paris/

The Palais de Tokyo is undergoing renovation and wont open completely until 2012 you can read at official webpage in English http://www.palaisdetokyo.com/fo3/low/programme/index.php?page=../../../newhome/index.php

A resto to check out in my business area La Defense just up on metro line 1 and the ave Champs Elysées, La Boutarde,  4, rue Boutard, 92200 Neuilly-sur-Seine. Tél. +33 01 47 45 34 55. open every day except Saturday midday and Sundays. Behind is Michel Rostang in the cuisine ! try the formule for 28€ includes entrée, plat, and dessert! great with the brandade de cabillaud or the crêpes Suzettes!

One classic place already mentioned in my blog the Grand Palais has an exposition call «Nature et idéal : le paysage à Rome; 1600-1650, Carrache, Poussin, le Lorrain», or nature and ideal the passage by Rome years 1600-1650AD with great arts until june 6th, www.grandpalais.fr

We have great pleasant surprises in the European Champions league as both Tottenham Spurs and Schalke 04 advance to the quarter finals. Two teams that are fairly ever there beat teams with more pedigree such as AC Milan and Valencia. Also, advancing were Barcelona, and Shaktar Donetz of Ucrania. The remaining four will be decided march 15:16 of which the favorites to advance are Manchester United, Chelsea, Real Madrid, and Bayern Munich.

Les Grandes Eaux Musicales will be at the Chateau de Versailles this year from April 2 to October 30 ,2011. See it all at the castle events webpage http://www.chateauversaillesspectacles.fr/spectacle.php?spe=1

Have a great weekend everyone,Cheers.

ps. My thoughts and prayers for the people of Japan hit by a horrible earthquake 8,8 magnitude.

March 8, 2011

Some news from France XXV

Well we are in the cool of winter that wont go away but the sun is out shiny and nice.  I will driven around the 19éme of Paris this week and waiting for the weekend to celebrate my oldest son birthday with his buddies in a bowling alley a bit south of Versailles.

The latest as I have always expected, the French government is investigating allegations of makeup goodies in TripAdvisor part of the Expedia group of companies.  Too many nice reviews which are not true, I do not contribute to them for many many years already. According to the Journal du Net that I read in French ,  Frédéric Lefebvre, Secretary of STate for the consumer rights have asked at the end of january to the DGCCRF (governing body of consumer rights in France ,government agency) to inquire to identify the business services of marketing with probable cause to publish false good reviews on the properties.  This after hotels in Singapore have ,also, complaint to the site.

In another publication I follow, the Le Quotidien du Tourisme , reports Air France is up in volume of 5,1% with a load factor of 77% in February, so continuing the trend that more people are flying :::!)

Futuroscope in Poitiers had a banner year in 2010 welcoming more than 130k visitors than in 2009. This is a futuristic site in the centre region of France at http://www.futuroscope.com/ , we had attended a while back and its similar to an EPCOT at Disney in Orlando, Fl USA.

Phil Collins tell of his retirement from the music world,and it will be a loss !! 40 yrs of great music, we will have the CD’s. Thanks Phil.

The Opéra in Paris is entering into a new era for the year 2011-2012 of its programming, this is the line up folks and a great one it is, cheers;  http://www.operadeparis.fr/cns11/live/onp/

Surveys to open the Parisien taxis to competition IS UNDERWAY. Many coming into the game offering same service same prices as those already established and the city is seen this as good.  Would it help the visitor? What do you think?

New surveys in France on the Presidential elections to come shows the right wing Marine Le Pen ahead of all candidates including now President Sarkozy !

tonite ,tom and next march 15,16 is another final round of eight finals in the Champions league games, tonite on tap as best Arsenal vs Barcelona, with Arsenal leading having beaten the catalans 2×1 on their field. Another interesting match for me is Schalke 04 ,Germany vs Valencia of Spain, go Schalke04 now the club of my Captain Raul Gonzalez Blanco of Real Madrid who our lousy President let go still with goals in his legs.

France goes for the honor vs Italy ,saturday March 12 at Rome in VI Nations rugby match. Should be a dandy as the team is down for the defeat vs England that took them out of winning the tournament.

All about deco animalier or the animal decoration in our life is going to be at the Musée d’arts decoratifs now until NOvember 1 2011,9€ admission, webpage http://www.lesartsdecoratifs.fr/francais/arts-decoratifs/expositions-23/actuellement-501/dans-la-galerie-d-etudes/animal/

at Bercy congress hall ,many things happening but on April 24 ,France vs Canada in ice hockey! see it all here  http://www.bercy.fr/programme/sport/1237/FRANCE_-_CANADA_match_préparatoire

Book fair salon du livre at parc des exposition de la porte de Versailles from March 18 to 21, 10h-23h admission 9€ adults, free for students under 26.  for the expo center webpage http://www.viparis.com/Viparis/exhibition-paris/exhibition/SALON-LIVRE/en/8714 ; for the official book fair webpage  in English, http://www.salondulivreparis.com/site/GB,C1397,I1397.htm?KM_Session=f0815c65562f53229942785b23ad62a1

Cheers and best travels in France.

March 6, 2011

Some news from France XXIIII

Well the weekend is ending and the preparation for a new week begins. I will be in Paris tomorrow noonish for a get together by Chatelet. Then, routine sets in.

The days are becoming colder again, nice cool breeze wont keep things warmer. We will go to a -2°C to an 13°C in the next ten days with nice skies to cloudy then rain by March 14-15. It seems we are trying harder to go into Spring but not there yet. Stay warm.

I was yesterday in my second home, the Chateau de Versailles, walking all over and inside as they were showing the exhibition of the Thrones of the world, or Trônes en Majesté  beautiful chairs where kings and queens sat in their official duty of monarchs all spread throughtout the palace property indoors. From Popes to emperor of China, to pharaoh of Egypt to Spain Carlos III to the French, magnificent exhibition.  It will lasted until june 19, webpage http://www.trones.chateauversailles.fr/index_fr.html#/nav/collection

See too the creator of the entrance to the metro Palais Royal in glass work at Centre Pompidou, Jean-Michel Othoniel, My Way», until May 23rd .webpage http://www.centrepompidou.fr/Pompidou/Manifs.nsf/AllExpositions/9683E6A6EB3C14C5C12577E5003937D3?OpenDocument&sessionM=2.2.1&L=1&form=Actualite

At Musée Maillol, 61, rue de Grenelle, 75007  from March 16 to July 31 2011. The great Spanish painter and sculptor, Miro le Sculpteur, webpage http://www.museemaillol.com/

Thalys the train service towards northern Europe has a special “Bienvenue chez nous” 50% sale up to  March 21 for travel between March 15 and May 15. all info at official webpage http://www.thalys.com/fr/en/?time=1299426009 

March 12/13 next weekend there will be a brocante or flea market by the Madeleine with about 40-50 participants. And as time is getting better, more fairs of wines are on the horizon,the next one at Maison Laffitte, the great racecourse and chateau town not far from me, info Vin et Terroirs de France  next weekend March 11-13 with about 100 winegrowers from 250 appelations and 50 producers of goodiesTél. : 06 22 86 77 96 
or webpage  http://vinsetterroirs.fr

In other new law in Spain speeding is at 110 k/p/h or fines of 100€  just another gimmick to claim reducing expenses ,one directive of the EU the Spaniards still dont believe. Stay prudent on the roads if going by car.

Real Madrid plays tonite another due or die game, they must win no other choice to keep up the pressure, Kings Cup vs Barcelona in April 20th and Champions league game against  O Lyon in Madrid on March 16th. Now second n the Liga with 7 points behind Barcelona. O the basketball front, also second in the league to Barcelona, they just allow their Italian coach Messina to resigned for lack of support, replaces and now lets see, they are in the quarter finals of the Euroleague,top in basketball, playing another Spanish team Power Valencia to five games starting March 22nd in Madrid.

And thats all for now, happy week ahead and slow down end of Sunday! Cheers

March 4, 2011

Some news from France XXIII

Ok so here we are start of another magical weekend in the belle France. Temps are going up maybe up to as much as 14°C and sunny,already today very nice at 10°C. The next few days look good,so maybe beginning transition to spring weather, I hope ::)

Talk about resto the stars of Michelin, just came out the new ranking 2011, and already a great talk in the city and region.  You have the following statistics ; 25 restos of 3 stars so 10 in Paris. 76 restos of 2 stars so 14 in Paris, and 470 restos of 1 star so  45 at Paris, and 20 in the Ile de France region.  The 3 stars in Paris are , Le Meurice 1er, L’Ambroisie, 4é. L’Arpége, 7e; alain Ducasse au Plaza Athénée, 8e, Le Bristol, 8e, Ledoyen, 8e, Pierre Gagnaire, 8e L’Astrance, 16e Le Pré Catelan, 16e, Guy Savoy, 17e.

The 2 stars are the Carré des Feuillants, 1er,L’Espadon,1er,Le Grand Véfour,1er, Passage 53, 2é, Relais Louis XIII, 5é, L’Atélier de Joêl Robuchon St GErmain, 7e, Thoumieux de Jean-François Piége, 7e, Apicius, 7é ,L’Atélier de Joêl Robuchon -Etoile, 8e, Le Cinq, 8e, Lasserre, 8e, Senderens, 8e, TAillevent, 8e, La Bigarrade, 17e, Michel Rostaing, 17e, Gordon Ramsey au Trianon, Versailles .

The 1 stars are Le Baudelaire, 1er Yam’Tcha, 1er, le Céladon, 2e,Le Pur’, 2e, Benoit, 6e, La Tour d’Argent, 5é, Fogon, 6e (olé), Hléne Darroze, 4e, Jacques Cagna, 6e, Paris, 6e; Le Restaurant, 6e, Sensing, 6e, Ze Kitchen Galerie, 6e, Aida, 7e, Auguste, 7e, Les Fables de la Fontaine, 7e, Gaya Rive Gauche par Pierre Gagnaire, 7e, Il Vino d’Enrico Bernardo, 7e, Le Jules Verne, 7e, Le Divellec, 7e,35° Ouest ,7e, Vin sur Vin, 7e,Le Violon d’Ingrés, 7e, Les Ambassadeurs, 8e, L’Angle du Faubourg, 8e, L’Arôme, 8e, Le Chiberta,8e, Dominique Bouchet, 8e, Laurent, 8e, Stella Maris, 8e, La table du Lancaster, 8e, Jean, 9e, Au trou Gascon, 12e, Antoine, 16e, Etc… 16e, La Grande Cascade, 16e; Hiramatsu, 16e, Passiflore, 16e, Le Pergolése, 16e, Relais d’Auteuil, 16e, La Table du Baltimore, 16e, Agapé, 17e, La Braisiére, 17e, La Fourchette du Printemps, 17e, Fréderic Simonin, 17e, Les Pléiades, Barbizon ,in Seine et Marne,77. Auberge de la Brie, Couilly-Pont-aux-Dames, Seine et Marne ,77. La Table Saint Just,  Melun / Vaulx-le-Pénil, Seine et Marne,77. Le Pouilly, Sénart /Pouilly-le-Fort,Seine et Marne, 77.Le Camélia, Bougival,Yvelines,  78. Le Belle Epoque, Châteaufort,Yvelines, 78. Auberge du chateau <Table des Blot>, Dampierre-en-Yvelines, Yvelines,78. Tastevin, Maisons-Laffitte,yvelines,  78. Le Village, Marly-le-Roi,Yvelines, 78. Laurent Trochain,  Le Tremblay-sur-Mauldre,Yvelines, 78. L’Angélique, Versailles,Yvelines, 78. Au Comte de Gascogne, Boulogne-Billancourt,Hauts de Seine; 92.Ducôté Cuisine, Boulogne-Billancourt, hauts de Seine, 92.L’Escarbille, Meudon, Hauts de Seine,92. La Truffe Noire, Neuilly-sur-Seine,Hauts de Seine, 92. Auberge des Saints-péres, Aulnay-Sous-Bois, Seine st Denis, 93. Auberge du Pont de Bry <La Grapilles>,  Bry-sur-Marne, Val du Marne, 94.les Magnolias, Le-Perreux-sur-Marne,Val du Marne, 94. Les Jardins d’Epicure, Bray-et-Lu,Val d’Oise, 95.Le Chiquito,Cergy-Pontoise / Méry-sur-Oise, Val d’Oise,95.

go by the 12 arrondissement at rue de levis permanent market for freshness in your eyes and see some of the new restos in the Michelin guide 2011.

Christian Dior is exposing the latest trends at the Bon Marché rive gauche,  24, rue de Sèvres (7eme).Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays from  10h to 20h.Thursdays and Fridays from 10h to 21h.

And of course, keep this date in mind, May 14-15 for the Salon de la Revue des Vins de France 5th edition at Palais Brogniart, or the Bourse, my event every year since,subscribe to my wine magazine too. Here is the info in English in pdf file http://www.larvf.com/data/fichiers/save_the_date_english.pdf 

and the magazine site in French, http://www.larvf.com/ : see my links n my blog for others worlds of wine.

Cheers and have a great weekend anywhere you are.

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