Archive for March, 2014

March 29, 2014

Pleyben revisited for the chocolates and Easter.

Ok today we had a nice sunny day, and we took advantage to do a lot of errands all over.  There is work in the house as the masons are in doing our  open terrace,but we left them working lol!

The day was started by a pilgrimage trip to the historical and gastronomic little town of Pleyben, in the Finistére breton, we have been here before on my last post of october 11 ,2012. So many places to see , but this one is special so came back.  The tourist office handling this part of Brittany is at the main office for the region here ,http://www.brittanytourism.com/discover-brittany/quintessential-brittany/pleyben-saint-thegonnec

We set out from home along the N165, to exit Pleyben road D765 Route Touristique, following easy signs for it we reach the city center in 1h30 time.

Once we got into town, we did a bit of stretching walk to go around the Chapelle de la Congregation, buy some baguettes at Boulangerie Loas,at the main square in town ,18 pl Charles de Gaulle. It was market day time so we indulge ourselves in doing our shopping of natural home country produce of terrines, pâtes, pork and veal meats, strawberries on the spot all at good prices and what we love about France the most, no industrial supermarket gimmicks just out with the farmer. Our main suppliers were the butcher , a couple of Giséle and Jean-Bernard Kergoat, who have their farm at “YUN MALGUEN” 29410 Plounéour-Ménez and do their work visiting several markets in the area. The other find was the cheese provider oh yes forgot to tell you we purchase goat cheese, crottin de chévre which my wife is doing tonite with toasted bread and honey! yummy. they are at the farm or ferme de Roc’h Conan same town as the butcher and do have a webpage , http://lafermederochconan.fr/  there are new cheeses coming up in April and we will be back.

We had eaten before at the Taverne La Blanche Hermine at 1 pl Charles de Gaulle opposite the calvary of Pleyben ,but now took photos of it; it is traditional breton cooking with a great breton ambiance. onion soup  or soupe aux oignons with some fricassée de boudin noir aux pommes et à l’andouille are delicious here. http://www.la-blanche-hermine.com/

However, trying to try everything as so far everything is delicious, we opted for a new one at the opposite end of the previous one, Créperie de l’Enclos, 51, Pl du Général de Gaulle,telephone +33 (0) 2 98 26 38 68.. It is a Gault & Millau 2 chefshats or toques, guide Pudlo (creperie of the year 2008) , Petit Futé, and Geo guide recipient awards. The owners serve us, led by Henri le Roux, and it was fantastic once again. The service, the ambiance very nice, the decoration with photos of the dishes from the menu is unique. The food was with a bottle of Rosé wine from Rocamadour, galettes Paysanne (ham, fresh cream, egg, tomatoes, and green lettuce), Rocamadour (goat cheese and miel), mine was Chichon (fry pork, espilette sauce, lettuce), Mandarine ( fresh goat cheese, bacon,chutney of mango and red onions) , then desserts were écossaise (chocolate and whiskey liquor), pêche melba, amandine (caramel, almonds flambée with Cointreau, and comportament bonheur ( peach, raspberry, mandarin , and caramel ice cream, coulis red fruits, and chantilly). Turn out to be about 20€ per person, good prices here. no webpage but you can read on them at Michelin, the place ::) http://restaurant.michelin.fr/restaurant/france/29190-pleyben/creperie-de-l-enclos/5gtish9

Of course, we took another peek at the Calvary of Pleyben suggest dating from the 1600’s and one of the top 3 in Brittany in preservation and decoration, the mayor’s office in French, http://www.mairiepleyben.fr/~tourisme/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=29&Itemid=19

We,also, did went Inside the Church of Saint Germain de l’Auxerrois, which is part of the enclos or enclosure of the calvary  seen in the link above. The preservation is magnificent, and already discussed in my previous post on the town.

Finally, here , we visited our favorite regional chocolatier Michel Chatillon, right next to the Calvary. These are delicious home made chocolates with factory in the back which you can tour as well as tasting in the store. The store is packed full of wonders of the French and Breton gastronomy. These are what you come to France for , original, best quality, and made in France. I let you read thru it, but we love the Florentins, thin slices of chocolate brought to the court of the duchy of Brittany by Anne de Bretagne after conversing with Catherine de Médicis and her Florentian tastes. You,have the brick breton, and just wonderful chocolates, accessories , baskets, and nougats! Worth going there just for this. http://www.chatillon-chocolat.com/index.php?lng=gb

But our day was not over, we headed on this time the D785 road to connect closer to the N165 back to Vannes, where we needed to get some essential for the Young today like PS VIta game machines, and video games tapes, at FNAC and Micromania. Finally, getting some home Tools and gadgets for the house at Castorama Vannes.

http://www.fnac.com/Vannes/Fnac-Vannes/cl49/w-4

http://www.micromania.fr/magasin/100/vannes.html

http://magasins.castorama.fr/4211-castorama-vannes

and we arrive home a bit exhausted but happy and ready to attack this wonderful meal we are getting going, with great wines of Mme the Baronness Philippone de Rothschild of Bordeaux! Cheers and happy weekend.

Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben Pleyben

 

 

 

 

 

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March 25, 2014

More of Paris, do we ever stop !!!

Do we ever stop of seeing Paris? well never, its a movable feast, eternal city of lights. Every opportunity is a welcome mat to civilisation, fun, history, architecture and specially the arts and culture we so much drank from it on each trip.

I was again by Paris yesterday, like so many posts before, (you can go to research and find them all here in my blog), the city never ceased to amazed me. More so because of a good friend from Algeria was coming over with his family and at least I had the opportunity to say hello , that is Paris the sublime meeting point of the world, or as Bogart used to say in Casablance, We will always have Paris.

We had our drinks at La Terrasse resto on the place de l’école militaire, all there in the square is good and sublime.  http://www.laterrassedu7.com/

Of course, I came by TGV train from Auray to Montparnasse direct, as much as don’t like trains many times  I have no choice, I took the metro line 6 because it goes above ground on the way in ok. However, on the way back, I took the wonderful bus 92 from place de l’école militaire to gare de Montparnasse , much better ride and wonderful Paris scènes ,above ground. I still amazed at the number of visitors that insist on taking these trains, its like a tourist attraction lol!!! Then on the TGV from Montparnasse back home and  because of railroad tracks works after Rennes are Under repairs, I have the distinct pleasure of taking the SNCF buses or cars. from the Gare de Rennes to Auray  in 2 hours! nice ride as it was very late but boy going out of a train station to go to a bus station this late at night almost midnight was not my cup of tea even in the smallist station like Rennes. I arrive well at my car for the last 15 minutes trip home. The Paris buses, métros, tramways etc are in the ever popular http://www.ratp.fr, and the gare de Rennes is here http://www.gares-en-mouvement.com/en/frrns/accueil/

While in Paris, I had sublime 10 floor views of the city towards the Eiffel tower,and the Invalides Church. I walk around the Eiffel, and went around the école Militaire. Walking past Place Joffre you see of course still the Eiffel tower but also,a unique monument to Peace;http://www.murpourlapaix.org/site/mur.html

Walking Paris is always good, and I did around these areas, looking at old parking places I have used and restos such as the 7vin and cassenoix  that I have been,all brParis Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Paris Rennes Parising memories of Paris, always good for the soul. Enjoy your week everyone/ Cheers.

 

 

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March 23, 2014

elections in France, 2014

Hi, today is sunny cool temps in the 9C or about 47F, Sunday is usually quiet time with families in France, and religious service  which in Brittany is still serious. However, today, it is the Municipales 2014 election, time to get out and vote to do your civic duty.

I am priviledge with my multi passports to vote in several countries when resident or by proxy; in France I have voted on every élections from municipals to nationals. First , I was registered in the Yvelines dept 78 when lived in Versailles. Once moving to this new region in 2011, I immediately thought out to register again in my new district. I did ,and got my voting card just a week ago.

So today was the big day, and my first voting experience in Brittany or Bretagne or Breizh.  First , a bit of a national scope. In France, the élections are low key, not as in some other countries like the USA where it has become a Hollywood contest. Here is all low key and politics are kept private.

First, your voting card does not mention your party or political leanings, and they are kept as private as your love ones. Political discussions are kept to the family or some very close friends. At work, we simply touch base on a general sense of direction but the détails of our thoughts are kept private too. In Spain, they are all out and it becomes very tense discussions. We like to argue there and take sides, typical of our many régions.

We are today face with 926 068 candidates for the 2014 municipales élections out of  44,8 millions registered voters including about 280 000 members of the EU living in France. All are call to vote in the first round of the municipales today, there will be a second round with the top vote getters on March 30th.  There will be elections in  36 700 towns and villages of France. The booths will be open from 8H to be closed by 18H, 19H or 20H depending on the size of the town.  Some far away confines of France such as New Caledonia or Nouvelle Calédonie, had begun Saturday at 22h, and from Sunday at 5h to 6h mornings it will the turn of  La Réunion and Mayotte.

Some entertainement aspects of the élections is the contestation or complaints that the election was not done correct, such as already is happening as I write at Corbeil-Essonnes (93) . There is the question of folks that voted that were not propertly identify to be eligible to vote lol!!! The principals figures already voted and the President of the French Republic did so today at 11h in his old mayor’s town of Tulle in the region of Corrèze . The canditates for the Paris post did so at 9h08 in the 14éme arrondissement and the 15éme arrondissement.

So far the election voters percentage is at 23,16% or slightly more than last years nationally. Where I am it was more so, no figures yet but the talk in the gym is that more people seems to be out. I voted by 12h midi here, and the Stream of folks was constant. I have a couple of pictures of the gym where the voting for my district took place and the office or bureau where I put myself in the private cabins to vote. You are advise to carry all voting docs with you as to not reveal the who you are voting for , and put in your Pocket those not in your favor ,and deposit in the urn the one you vote it for; lol!!! French discretion is at a must.

The day is still sunny and now we are preparing for the delicious meal the women of the house is doing, and then getting ready for me to go to Paris on business tomorrow by train from 5h a killer and then come back at midnight but hey got Tuesday as rest day RTT off with pay. Great, vive la différence!!! enjoy your Sunday.

Pluvigner Pluvigner

March 22, 2014

Some news from France CXXXII

We are continuing with good weather even thus today this morning we had a brief moment of hailstorm rains; then it stop and now sunny back up again, temps in 8C or about 48F. The work on the house is coming along, and I am ready for another trip to Paris.

In the meantime, this is the latest from la Belle France.

The Venice Simplon-Orient-Express , in service since 1982 will expands it routings  from May 2014 onwards. It will have itineraries to Brussels coming from  Venise, Vienna,and Budapest, with five new frequencies including one at night. The first trip leaving Venise towards Brussels will be the 17 May 2014. It will be offered at from 2 020 € per person in double cabin and complete meals except drinks. hot off the press from Les Echos not yet on the official site here  http://www.vsoe.com/web/vsoe/venice_simplon_orient_express.jsp?hll=1

Another first in Paris, and hear it here in the blog first, know what you eat. Eat good without necessarily eating organic. Know the producer almost almost. Responsible for eating. Eat natural. Eat committed.  This is exactly what thought Cédric Naudon – stitched design and gastronomy businessman – dreaming jeune rue.  Mouth tempting  shops which blueprints to places of culture, of exceptional products sold at the right price, a work highlighting artisans… Altogether 18 of the biggest names of design and architecture (Tom Dixon, Jasper Morrison, Paola Navone, Eugeni Quitllet…) will sign milling, covered, market bar to tapas, pastry, cheese, Korean street food, glacier or cinema around the rue du Vertbois in the 3rd arrondissement. A beautiful madness. Opening scheduled for late may, at best.

Near my old working grounds, you have the magnificent Le Salon sur l’eau, a veritable peniche boat with wonderful delights. The détails to get there are  at 5,quai Marcel Dassault, 92150 Suresnes, tel +34 (0) 1 41 38 93 73, open Mondays to Sundays lunch and dinner, with a nice Sunday  Brunch from 12h to 16h for 29€ per person ,and 19€ for those Under 12 yrs old. I give you three reasons to be there asap, Number 1: it is a vessel of 500 m2! Uncovered terrace is really fun when our friend Sun is there, otherwise we moved indoors with views on the water.  Number 2: you eat well. For the Sunday brunch (my favorite) You begin with a hot drink, a juice or a smoothy with fresh fruit then place buffet sweet and salty! Hot croissants, fruit or cottage cheese with grout and then salad. Gazpacho, guacamole, scrambled eggs, ham, chicken with Morels or even net bar, the choice is wide. It ends on a half-cooked chocolate or other sweet treats. Be sure to spend a little bit of  time to book reservation. The side restaurant, the menu is just as varied. We remember duck foie gras scallops to the griddle and the sweet dark chocolate.  Number 3: managers know how to party. During the week (weekend included), the boat is a restaurant lunch and dinner and it is not uncommon to see djs invade the boat around 11 pm. If you are hot, the evening can finish later! Don’t worry, the team has also thought of your darlings and offers entertainment during brunch, just for them. Great! more info here http://www.salonsurleau.fr/

Le Figaro did a story about the favorites dogs of Parisiens, they are all over here lol!!! The saying goes that if by 50 you don’t have or had a dog you are not Parisien at heart. So,therefore, I left because don’t have a dog (had it when a kid), and don’t intend to have one now, but here are the tops breeds for Parisiens. The chihuahua. you can see them at the t L’astrance for dinners. Favorite terrain: 16th (16éme arrondissement).  The bichon, tied with yorkshire. In residential neighborhoods to bourgeois tendency, it is customary to offer a Playmate to her offspring. Hundred times more affectionate than plush. Favorite terrain: 17th. The labrador. This dog of water and open spaces (in Paris, we prefer the sand color) pique a head every Sunday in the Lake Daumesnil. Favorite terrain: 12th. The jack russell. A dynamic race for dynamic city dweller. The darling of the thirtysomethings on the Pierre Hardy shoes. Favorite terrain: 4th. The ‘ akita-inu. This little dog to Wolf’s head has a rating of hell. Originally from Japan, he is paraded preferably by leash at rue Sainte-Anne . Favorite terrain: 2nd.

And ,of course, can’t get away for telling you something about the places they are most welcome according to the article. Danny Hills , 84, avenue Secrétan (XIXe). Tél.: 01 84 14 05 95; Le Cette, 7, rue Campagne-Première (XIVe). Tél.: 01 43 21 05 47. Café Trama 83, rue du Cherche-Midi (VIe). Tél.: 01 45 48 33 71. Café de L’Odéon, Place de l’Odéon (VIe). Tél.: 01 44 85 41 30 (Watch your steps around here on the sidewalks!) .Monsieur Bleu,20, avenue de New York (XVIe). Tél.: 01 47 20 90 47. Non Solo Pizza ,5, rue Mesnil (XVIe). Tél.: 01 47 04 69 03 ,Chinchin, 25, avenue de Reille (XIVe). Tél.: 01 45 89 25 06. and Café du Marché. 38, rue Cler (VIIe). Tél.: 01 47 05 51 27.

For trips in the park,when you arrive too late and they get up too soon, see these places , www.dogwalking.fr and www.holidog.com . For dogs sitting , but of course, a good one is www.dogsitter.fr  If you need to leave for extended time, try  Actuel Dogs (Vincennes). Tél.: 01 48 08 00 97. De 20 to 150 € per day according to the room and services ask. http://www.actueldogs.com/

And for a proper Paris outifitting worthy of a fashion capital ,then head for these places. Marie Poirier, 84, bd des Batignolles (XVIIe). Tél.: 01 45 22 22 50, and La niche du BHV Marais (the great dept store), 42, rue de la Verrerie (IVe). Tél.: 09 77 40 14 00.

To commemorate the 2000 years of his death, talking Emperor Augustus of the Roman Empire, the Grand Palais and the Musée du Louvre are doing some joint efforts. Now to July 13 2014 at the galeries nationales de Grand Palais, every day except tuesday May 1 and Tuesdays, from 10h-20h, wednesdays until 22h admission  13€,adults. Not in English yet but in French will do ::) http://www.grandpalais.fr/fr/evenement/moi-auguste-empereur-de-rome

I will leave you with my latest escapades into the culinary exquisite choices we have in France, and not just French. One of my colleagues at work here told me about a asian resto, and as my wife like that food, and I have been taking it on lately on my travels in Asia, we decided to try today. IT was a find, wonderful family very helpful Vietnameses, great service, the food is all home made on site, and good prices, prompt personalise service, and we left feeling like we have found a home in Vannes. The place La Saigonnaise, 2 Place de la Madeleine, Vannes, tel +33 (0) 2 97 68 49 80. They have take out service for 15% less than the menu carte prices. Indeed we went overboard with Chinese and Vietnamese beers, at 4€ each. then the menu for entrée, plat, and dessert for 17,90€ per person. An assortments of samoassas, nems, raviolis,papillottes with shrimp, cantonese rice, chinese fry noodles, with two distinct sauces, I had the bœuf au saté or beef satay sauce; great, and for desserts dame de saigon (coco,banana ice cream and chantilly cream with a vietnamese nougat on top). more here http://www.la-saigonnaise.com/ I will put the pictures of the restaurant in this post as no need to do one short for them alone.

Have a great end of weekend.  I will be in Paris Monday, business but meeting some old friends in the evening. Tomorrow is municipal élections here and I will vote for the first time in Brittany!!! http://www.pluvigner.fr/module-Contenus-viewpub-tid-2-pid-235.html  Cheers!

 Vannes  Vannes  Vannes  Vannes  Vannes

 

 

 

March 16, 2014

It’s becoming routine, Bucharest again looks wonderful.

Ok so this was another trip to Bucharest Romania, this time it was just in Bucharest for four days. Great weather, sunny cool nice about 15-18C all week.

As usual I took the flight from Nantes airport; http://www.nantes.aeroport.fr/ , on Air France, to Paris (Roissy-en-France) CDG T2F, and there we change to T2E for the connection this time on TAROM, the national airline of Romania, for a nice flight in; Bucharest Henri Coanda, but actually in the city of Otopeni about 16,5 kms from the city http://www.bucharestairports.ro/index.php?lang=en

We took a taxi to the hotel, Taxi 2000, where you print a ticket from a machine on the way out from the terminal just before hitting the outside ,and it gives you the name of the taxi company and the number of the car, very nice ride, and for 6 euros!!!  some explanation on rates on taxis at the airport in  English, http://bucharestairports.ro/otp/index.php?cat=16&article=55  the taxi company is here where you can even pre book the taxi,but its only in Romanian ,http://www.taxi2000.ro/

There , I headed to the hotel, been there before and its excellent Crown Plaza Hotel, part of the Intercontinental hôtels group.  Each time has been great for me there, wonderful indoor heated pool, sauna, gym room, great Grand Café bar for drinks and news/sports TV, then the Le Brasserie restaurant very nice, the rooms are big and well stocked, the elevator works fine and fast, checkin and checkout is smooth, just another wonderful IHG property. http://www.ihg.com/crowneplaza/hotels/us/en/bucharest/buhrm/hoteldetail?cm_mmc=GoogleMaps-_-cp-_-ROEN-_-buhrm

Even thus, I had four days, it was well stockup with work, so very little time to go out, just some driving around with locals ;passing the by local Universities like the  Romano-American and the agriculture research ,and the Romexpo conference dome building around the World Trade center business park where we had lunch at the cafeteria every day. Except one lunch we ordered pizza from Jerry’s, quickly delivered and good. http://www.jerryspizza.ro/#2

http://www.romexpo.ro/home  ; Romexpo, the exhibition hall of Bucharest par excellence. http://www.ro-am.ro/ ; the Romanian-American university, nice place well located , and the agriculture university veterinary campus, great location too, and nice complex , http://en.usamv.ro/campus/veterinary-medicine-cotroceni-campus

I did get one special night to go out with friends, and had a wonderful dinner at a wonderful very traditional Romanian restaurant in the outskirst of Bucharest. Restaurant Vatra Neamului, Balostesti, past Otopeni the airport city, along the DN1 road. This is very much use as well for weddings and anniversaries by the locals, as it is very traditional Romanian in food and decoration. We had dinner in the poets’s  room as you have portraits of Romanian poets/writers going way back. Vatra Neamului, is a mix cuisine between ancient moldavian/romanian food, the food wich was served by our ancestors before us, and a trip to the time of Stefan the Great, Michael the Brave, and the unrivaled writer Mihai Eminescu. Wonderful find, enjoy it when you can. http://www.vatraneamului.ro/index.php

and the trip back at last, was great as usual, flying back on Tarom Airlines to Paris CDG and then AF to Nantes, where my car was waiting for the 1h30 trip back home along the N165. All very nice, smooth, and pleasant weather, can’t ask for more. Thanks again to my local friends for the great host. Until next time, do come and enjoy Bucharest and Romania. cheers

Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest Bucharest

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March 15, 2014

Some news from France CXXXI

Hello, allô , hola ola, well just another passing by Paris and it feels like a new-born. The weather has help , as sunny and cool just nice. We were as high as 18C, just back from another trip to East Europa. And ,finally got me the workers to do my terrace. Some shopping, some new phones, and now something about France and Paris in specific.

On the arrival of spring, these are the places recommended by the Air France folks on Paris.

1) musée de la vie romantique, just a lovely tea break in the garden is romantic! it is at the building hôtel Scheffer-Renan, 16 rue Chaptal, tel +33 (0) 1 55 31 95 67. info and access in English here, http://parismusees.paris.fr/en/city-paris-museums/city-paris-museums-network/museum-romantics

2) Detaille, from 1905 great parfums are made here with engrave glass containers, at 10 rue Saint Lazare, Tel +33 (0) 1 48 78 68 50. www.detaille.com

3) Musée Carnavalet, a must one of my favorites and the history of Paris within. It has a beautiful garden à la française.23 rue de Sévigné, tel +33 (0) 1 44 59 58 58. www.carnavalet.fr

4) Musée des Archives Nationales, a wonderful garden surrounded by four beautiful buildings the hôtel Soubise, hôtels d’Assy, and Breteuil with a tree gardens, and the hôtel rohan. at 60 rue des Francs-Bourgeois, tel +33 (0) 1 40 27 60 96: www.archivesnationales.culture.gouv.fr

5) The best coffee in town coming from 72 countries in beans , roasted on site, wonderful flavor do stop by, La Caféothéque de Paris at 52 rue de l’Hôtel de Ville;tel +33 (0) 1 53 01 83 84. www.lacafeotheque.com

6) to taste delicious white wines in Paris on site, and books in a library! go  to the Chapitre 20, at 8 rue Saint-Paul, from 19 to 21h every thursday. tel +33 (0) 1 77 15 20 72, www.chapitre20.fr

7) Musée Rodin, the must for the great Rodin, with one of the best gardens in Paris, 3hectares of it. And the great sculptures of course. see it at 79 rue de Varennes, tel +33 (0) 1 44 18 61 10 , www.musee-rodin.fr

8) the Musée Galliera, has a wonderful garden on the lawn you can have a picnic, great spot recently renovated, see it at 10 avenue Pierre Iér-de-Serbie, tel +33 (0)1 56 52 86 00. www.palaisgalliera.paris.fr

9) the Musée Bourdelle, scupltures of bronze around flower and plants, with red bricks in an urban oasis in Paris at 18 rue Antoine Bourdelle, tel +33 (0) 1 49 54 73 73. www.bourdelle.paris.fr

10) the famous and wonderful Musée de Cluny, walking in the forest with the dame à la licorne, with plants lineup as per their utilisation in the middle ages; at 6 place Paul-Painlevé, tel +33 (0) 1 53 73 78 00. www.musee-moyenage.fr

11) the wonderful Musée Delacroix, recently renovated gardens in 2012 as they influence the painter in 1857, see it at 6 rue de Fürstenberg, tel +33 (0) 1 44 41 86 50 , www.musee-delacroix.fr

12) the excentric musée Zadkine, abundant vegetation with different scents with beautiful bronze sculptures of Ossip Zadkine; he lived here from 1928 to 1967! see at 100 bis rue d’Assas, tel +33 (0) 1 55 42 77 20. http://parismusees.paris.fr/en/city-paris-museums/city-paris-museums-network/zadkine-museum

If you want to eat in a palace and with a great chef go to the Palais de Brongniart, by the Bourse de Paris at 28 place de la bourse, in the bottom you will find  the Terroir Parisien of Yannick Alléno with a deco like a New York loft apartment. Very chic and not expensive from the carte from 20€ see more at www.yannick-alleno.com

The great building of louis Vuitton at 102 avenue des champs Elysées, has now more than shopping but a museum in the espace culturel. www.louisvuitton.fr

One of my old hangout areas as used to work for many years just around and went bar hopping there, the Hôtel Burgundy has been renovated  with a beautiful spa with Thai, Indian, and Hawaiian style treatments from 150€ at 6-8 rue Duphot, tel +33 (0) 1 42 60 34 12, www.legurgundy.fr

Continuing with the best of Paris, see the wonderful neo classical facade , Inside all done with interior designer Jean-Louis Deniot for the hôtel Thérèse at 5:7 rue Thérèse, tel +33 (0) 1 42 96 10 01; www.hoteltherese.com  again just up my alley n my old beautiful Paris.

Come to see the wonderful exhibition on Van Gogh thru the writings of Antonin Artaud, who did it in text first in 1947.  The exhibition centers around the writing in the book by Artaud, all this at the even wonderful Musée d’Orsay. ah the work is entitled “Van Gogh, l suicidé de la societé” OR Van Gogh ,the man suicided by society. lasts until July 6. see at 1 rue de la légion-d’honneur, www.musee-orsay.fr

Americans are in vogue see Bill Viola, on his art videos at the Grand Palais until July 23, www.grandpalais.fr  and Robert Adams photos of the American west at the musée du  jeu de Paume  until May 18; www.jeudepaume.org

And more in Paris, from Watteau to Fragonard until July 21 at the jacquemart-andré, www.jacquemart-andre.com  and the story of the obelisk of Pairs done first in 1836 back to Egypt and then finally at the place de la concorde, see the travels of it until July 6 at the marines museum or Musée National de la Marine , www.musee-marine.fr

The judicial police of Paris is moving out (the tradition of the CSI or Scotland yard) from the traditional 36 quai des Grands-Augustins to the Batignolles district. Many crimes were investigated here even that of Princess Diana accident. The new building in the 17éme of Paris will have a courthouse next door all now Under construction, you read it here first on the blogweb…..

There are many Cuban restaurants in Paris last read they were 14 but only a handful are real restaurants the rest are mostly cigar and salsa places; one that can stand out do both pretty good is Cuba Compagnie in the 11éme arrondissement 48 bd Beaumarchais not far from the Bastille, http://www.cubacompagnie.com/

If you want to go to the jungle in Paris , yes you can too, Paris has it all. See the aquarium tropical de la porte Dorée, 293 avenue Daumesnil,, created in 1931, www.aquarium-portedoree.fr  or the equally impressive Grandes Serres du jardin des Plantes at 9 rue Cuvier, www.jardindesplantes.net  and the secluded and nice Jardins des Serres d’Auteuil, my favorite place to get lost, at 3 avenue de la porte d’Auteuil, no web simple unique founded in 1761 all surrounding a garden à la française with five greenhouses of 19C architecture, and do come during the music festival to evoque mother nature at its best.

And while passing by Charles de Gaulle, the airport CDG do stop by terminal 2E hall M for the airport museum, showing until September 17 2014 works from the heritage furniture and Gobelins tapestries  including the armory of objects kept from the time of Louis XIV you will see work by Charles le Brun, le Corbusier, Alexander Calder, André-charles Boulle, Joan Miro, and even the more recent collection by Sylvain Dubuisson.

See y’ah around, cheers.

March 8, 2014

Special visit to Rennes.

We had a super charge up day. It is my oldest boy birthday, no 22. So won’t go into the expenses lol!! However, we celebrated it in Rennes, old capital of the dukedom of Brittany.

We started in the morning , to go get a minivan to carry all as my father was of course invited. After we switch cars at the super U store where we get cheaper rates for car rentals, we left for Rennes.  The tourist office there is at http://www.tourisme-rennes.com/en/home.aspx

As usual we took the D16 out to the D117 and on the N24 to Rennes coming into the city by the N24. We came in on market day, but were able to find street parking for the day for two euros at rue legraveren off rue st malo. We had réservations at restaurant back to the 60’s, an American diner style resto full of American icons and mountain dew sodas, cheesecakes, milkshakes, and big burgers. A smoothie, mojito mangue,club sandwiches, coffees, and great 60’s music background, a very efficient friendly staffs and loaded with locals families and students from nearby Universities. A great day indeed.  http://www.restaurant-backtothe60s.com/

We came back home, and it was still early so decided to get back with our car and go to Quimper to do some shopping. There we stop by the Zone commerciale de Gourvily, just outside Quimper on the D783 road. There are full of stores independantly line up as well as the shopping center Glann Odet, with 77 stores Inside!  http://www.centre-commercial-quimper.com/infos-pratiques ;right off the gas station and leclerc hypermarché, http://www.e-leclerc.com/magasin/quimper ;all in the same spot really, huge , nice, great shopping and good deals for our house decoration,wallpaper, paint ,etc lol!

We arrived back a while ago,and didn’t want to let this magical moment slip away with our sons and my father. Nice family outing in la Belle France. Great sunshine with temps in the 20C degrees, sunny nice beautiful , and dry. until we read again as next week is busy work traveling out of France. Cheers.

Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes Rennes

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March 7, 2014

Some news from France CXXX

Beautiful weather has return , and sunshine in the skies. We are getting ready to another wonderful weekend in Brittany. Tomorrow we celebrated my oldest birthday in Rennes.

 

Louis de Funes is a French movie star of the 1960-80’s ,made famous in France for the movie le Gendarme de Saint Tropez (1964) , I know him since the series Fantomas (even before a james bond), and on those movies I took my first steps to Learning French long ago. We are celebrating 100 years of his birth. He began his movie career in 1945, taking him long to establish himself as a great actor. showing at the Crous culturel de Paris, http://www.bsc-crousparis.fr/exposition-louis-de-funes-100-ans/

The Collection Lambert  in Avignon is now closed for renovations.  The project has it that will bring together the hôtel de Caumet (current building) and that one of hôtel  de Montfaucon (an old art school). The renovation will take about 18 months.

For the new Arts center in Arles, the regional government and arts organisation has chosen amongst  the 176 nominations, 5 teams of architects for the project of relocation of the NPHS. These are : Eduardo Souto de Moura, Portuguese architect, 2011 Pritzker Prize, Prix Wolf 2013;  Corinne Vezzoni and Associates, architect based in Marseille, born in Arles; Rudy Ricciotti, Grand national prize of architecture 2006;  Francis Soler, Grand national prize of architecture 1990; and Marc Barani, ‘ Équerre D’Argent 2003, national Grand Prix of architecture 2013.  the project of Frank Gehry that will house the Luma Foundation. The future building of 4000 m² will offer spaces of courses and vocational training, of laboratories dedicated to film and digital techniques an exhibition space and a conference area. It will also help to confirm the identity and the international influence of Arles as territory of photography and contemporary art. The jury will meet June 12, 2014 in Arles to elect the winner team among the five chosen candidates.

The mondial du tatouage (world tattoo) , Grande Halle de la Villette ,  41, rue de Verneuil – 75007 Paris; http://www.mondialdutatouage.com/

and more at musée  du quai Branly from 6 May to 18 October 2014, tattoos and tattuages, http://www.quaibranly.fr/fr/programmation.html

From 23 march to 5 April the Atelier des peintres du Marais expose their work at  72 rue François Miron
75004 , webpage here http://www.lespeintresdumarais.fr/

 

My wonderful Versailles, will have the Grands Eaux Musicales : Saturdays and Sundays from April 5 to October 26, 2014 + Tuesdays from May 20 to June 24 + some holidays. Getting water from 11: 00 to 12: 00 and 15:30 to 17: 00. and Exceptional Grandes Eaux Musicales dates on Friday, April 18, Thursday, may 8, and Friday, August 15. The Jardins Musicaux: Tuesday April 01 to May 13, and then from July 01 to October 28 from 9:00 to 18:00. Attention: during the musical gardens, there is no great waters music

Lots to do for the weekend so need to go, but stay tune, more to come in Paris1972-Versailles2003.

 

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