Archive for October 24th, 2018

October 24, 2018

Some news from France CXCXVI

And here we are cruising on a Tuesday in my lovely sunny cool 64F Morbihan. Time me think for an update on what is going on in the world’s most visited country, my belle France! Oh yes Paris is cloudy at 61F,sorry!

The venerable Opéra Bastille, 30 years already! (Happy birthday, Joyeux anniversaire!)Building a modern and popular opera, radically opposite the Opéra Garnier originally built for the bourgeoisie of the Second Empire so many have mentioned: This was the objective assigned by President Mitterrand to the 757 architects who participated in the international competition launched in February 1983 to build the Opéra Bastille. Winner of the competition, the Uruguyao-Canadian architect Carlos Ott ,and finally opened in 1989.

With 2 745 seats, Bastille is the largest European seated opéra . The  opera room covered with black velvet that absorbs sound, in perfect harmony with the grey granite walls..The most remarkable, it is the ceiling of 700 m2 all in glass that illuminates the room with a very white fluorescent light it is the gigantism of the scene of a surface of 750 m2, lined with a back-stage of the same size and two lateral scenes of 500 m2 Each! Not to mention the rehearsal room of 2 500 m2. All decorated with 22 fire-cut metal curtains weighing 8 tons each. These curtains also serve as an acoustic boundary, which allows to repeat several shows at the same time

On the rue de Lyon side, the building houses the workshops for the production of the scenery of the performances given in Bastille and Garnier. In this factory of 8 000 m2, the small hands of the opera are dealt: sculptors (polystyrene in which are carved some elements of decoration), shoemakers, jewelers, dyers, launderers, Upholsterers… A hundred enthusiasts of great talent who together form a true conservatory of craft arts.

Here is the official webpage: Official Opéra Bastille

New setback for the city of Paris in the banks of the Seine!. Last  Monday, October 15  the Administrative Court of Appeal confirmed the cancellation of the pedestrian use of the quays on the right bank, the flagship measure of mayor Anne Hidalgo,Socialist Party of Paris. In its judgment, the court not only confirms the judgment of the Administrative Tribunal which, on 21 February 2018, cancelled the deliberation passed by the Paris Council on 26 September 2016 to create a pedestrian area in place of the 3.3 km of the Voie Georges-Pompidou (Iéme and 4éme). But the appellate judge goes further by cancelling by way of consequence, the order of Pedestrian use taken by the mayor of Paris on October 18, 2016. Ok so enough of changing Paris! In French here! Administrative Court of Appeals Paris

Something useful. Pierrick Bourgault  is the author of a small guide that lists more than 200 bars in activity in the capital. Genius under the stars. This is the name of a hotel bar… Ibis, which will make you change your mind about Ibis hotel bars, says Mr. Bourgault. It has a huge terrace with large trees and guinguette and a charming indoor garden, built in the spirit of the green squat. To listen to jazz in an unexpected place. 15 rue Bréguet (11éme). More info on the book here on the FNAC: Pierrick Bourgault Paris book

Anecdote: Because yes, every 1st of every month is the same thing, you forgot to load your Navigo card! So here you are stuck in a long queue for more than 30 minutes and you are late, once again. Luckily, your boss will be late too! So no stress, you are late and it’s normal in Paris, everyone is late! Yes!!! Just saying…!!!

Boissise-la-Bertrand: A new dam on the Seine to manage the increase in traffic near Melun.77 Seine et Marne. See the picture;nice Levy on the Seine Boissise-la-Bertrand 77

Always looking for new place for your domestic animals ? Good news! Pauline and Sarah, two friends passionate about animals, open the first dog cafe in Paris: Dog District! A la carte, you can enjoy snacks, pancakes, sandwiches, coffee, tea or original drinks with the names of each of Pauline and Sarah’s 9 dogs. You can go to meet the dogs in need of love around a small café, and even decide to adopt one if the coup de coeur was to happen (we will not lie, there is a chance that it happens). Dog District opening end 2018, start 2019.For now more in Facebook: Dogs District Paris

Here it is the largest independent bookstore in Paris, which opens this past  Friday 26 October.  Located in Paris, on the side of the Grands boulevards, precisely at 25, Boulevard Poissonnière, the new and large independent bookshop is very much awaited. And its opening is only a matter of hours. The project is ambitious: on 450 m2, the shop replaces a children’s clothing store. The most: A team of enthusiasts, ready to make you discover their favorites and their favorite books. ICI  Grand boulevards 25, Boulevard Poissonnière More here on site I follow : ICI Grands Boulevards Paris

A bit on some wonderful tree parks that are worth the detour me think,and one that is a must!

L‘arboretum national des Barres, located in Nogent-sur-Vernisson (Loiret 45), is certainly the largest and most illustrious. This domain, created in 1820, by Philippe-André de Vilmorin, son of the founder of the famous Seeds company, brings together over 50 hectares more than 2 600 species and subspecies of the most diverse trees and shrubs .More info here: Arboretum des Barres

Located on the ancient domaine of Louis XIV, the arboretum of Versailles-Chèvreloup was created much more recently, in the mid-years 1960, by the National Museum of Natural History, for a scientific purpose, planting the trees according to their origin rather than their botanical classification. Since the spring, this vast area of 200 hectares planted with 10 000 trees of 2 500 different species is fully open to the public. Yes not far from my old home , lovely historical place seldom visited by tourists. More here: Arboretum Chevreloup Versailles

And a site to see them all in France: Association of arboretums of France

And now last but not least, the foodies, food , repas apéros, à la table!!! in my belle France and gorgeous Paris! + been and recommended by yours truly = not been but well recommended

Le Scénarium. =Behind the façade of a mysterious couscous specialist, this “speakeasy” (Secret bar) offers its chic decoration and its microphone to all amateurs, musicians of various styles or comedies. 198, rue Saint-Maur (10éme). More here Le Scenarium Paris

Chez Hélène. =A tiny coffee shop in a small street… but that makes them happy. In addition to her stage, the boss makes available instruments! Tenor Sax, Casio organ, amp, guitars… And for the record, the bar has its copy in  Shanghai, arranged by Johnny, the ex-husband of Helen. 43, rue Damesme (13éme). More here: Chez Hélène Paris

Le Connétable. + The frame is responsible for history: This was the former mansion of the Cardinal of Retz. This restaurant-theatre-night bar, open from Monday to Saturday until 05h (5am), welcomes in its vaulted cellar  one or two concerts every evening, or almost. The show listens in silence, as in the theatre. 55, rue des Archives (3éme).More here: Le Connetable Paris

The first place of ephemeral conviviality stamped Ground Control + opened in the city of fashion, quai de Austerlitz, in Paris. The concept? Bars, a dance floor, couches, a new way to apprehend the city in a festive and informal way. Over time, other urban areas were invested, the last being in 2017 the former postal sorting center of the SNCF, 150 years old, located two folds from Gare de Lyon (12éme). And in the bag, there is the opening in November of a new Ground Control on the most beautiful avenue of the world, in Le Galerie 26 at the avenue des Champs Elysées!.  More here and see the pending news of the gallery (le galerie).  Ground Control Paris le Galerie

And if lookig for some good Italian in Paris here are my newest suggestions!

The Roman Giovanni Passerini ,who became known at the Gazzetta and in its micro-table Rino-serves in its corner restaurant delicious fresh pasta embellished with bold sauces (pici with octopus stew, marinated cuttlefish and friarielli; Casarecce with turbot, asparagus and oregano; Ravioli of guinea fowl, poultry juice and Bottarga) Restaurant Passerini. = 65, rue Transverse (12éme). Tel.: 01 43 42 27 56. Every day except  Sun, Mon. and Tue. Formulas: 26 to €48 (lunch). Menu carte  approx. 40-70 €.

The stand of Riccardo Ferrante . (see above Ground Control) Which daily makes tasty fresh pasta from a variety of ancient organic wheat from Abruzzo (the solina, which gives its name to the resto) and seasonal products. Casarecce All’amatriciana, three cheese ravioli, gnocchetti with violet broccoli and hazelnuts… worthy of the best transalpine trattorias! To be enjoyed on one of the large guest tables, under the hall of 4500 m2.  Solina à Ground Control. 81, rue du Charolais (12éme). Open every day except Mondays. Menu Carte aprox. 15-20€. More here Solina pasta Ferrante Paris

Calling in this canteen run on two floors, little sister of Deux fois plus de Piment (11éme) and big sister of Cinq fois plus de Piment (3éme). After tasty pork ravioli, we attack excellent sichuanaises noodles (beef, chopped pork or seafood), served in a spicy sauce with varying degrees (to be chosen on a scale from 0 to 5). Level 1 is enough to awaken the most hardened papilla. To taster beware… Trois Fois Plus de Piment. + 184, rue Saint-Martin (3éme). Tél.+33 (0) 6 52 66 75 31. Open every day except Mondays Menu carte aprox  10-15€.More info here : Trois fois plus de Piment Paris

And that’s all folks!! for now in the Frenchie waves with a Breton twist. Enjoy your week, mine is cruising already thinking where for next weekend!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

 

October 24, 2018

Lannion, a re visit to the north!

I come back to you to another find in my lovely Brittany. This time again I go up north to the Côtes d’Armor dept 22 and the pretty city of Lannion. Big world one of my co workers is a native!

The origin of the name Lannion comes from “Lann”, which designates a religious establishment created by the Bretons of the High Middle Ages.

The city of Lannion is served by a four-lane road connecting it to Guingamp on the N12 (Paris-Brest). From a TGV station in low season, the TGV provides a connection on Friday evening from Paris with a return to the capital on Sunday evening. In high season, a rotation per day is ensured in addition to the weekend’s service. The high-speed line “Le Mans-Rennes”, opened in 2017, will allow to earn 40 min on average on the journey to Paris from the stations of Plouaret and Lannion. The station is also, served daily by the local TER Bretagne trains. Lannion is located at 35 km from Guingamp; 84 km from Brest; 166 km from Rennes; and 515 km from Paris.

Lannion is a bridge town on the Léguer river. The proximity to the mouth of the Léguer makes the river level in the city center different from several meters depending on the tides. This feature allowed the establishment of a forjd in the most remote times at the level of the bridge of Kermaria, point where the influence of the tides stops as you can see near the rue Saint-Christophe-le-Passer. A dam allows to hold the water brought in by the rising tide and to release it in an artificial path at a descending tide.

Lannion

A bit of history I like

The numerous megaliths in the region testify to its ancient past, not to mention the flints, axes and polished stones belonging to the prehistoric ages. Near Lannion the Tumulus de la Motta contains precious metal jewelry. The menhir of the Crec’h in Servel and that of Saint-Patrice, also called the Menhir of Righteousness (by the rue des Fréres Lagadec, included in a wall), are in fact two Gallic stelae. The second was Christianized.

The first dam used as a fish trap built in Servel, 190 meters long, formed of piles connected by wooden strips, with triangular platforms anchoring the structure in the sand and also serving as breakwaters, was built between 613 and 615 ( These dates were found thanks to the dating of the oak wood  used for its construction in the estuary of the Léguer river. At a descending tide, the fish were trapped in the reservoir.  Lannion is involved, during the Hundred Years War and the war of the Succession of Brittany.

Things to see

The Church of Saint-Jean-du-Baly, with its tower of 1519 and the vault of its nave restored in 2003 is one of the highlights of visiting this town in my opinion but there is more. The Church  is nicknamed Notre-Dame until about 1625. This Church replaced the Chapel depending on the Castle of Lannion and dedicated to Saint Eloi. The Church was built in the 14C and later renovated in the 15C and 16C. Then, again  in the 17C, by the addition of a small sacristy.

Some of the highlights inside are the Calvary dated 1867 , a Sundial dated 1668, the  altarpiece of the Rosary  and several portraits such as that of the Virgin, St. Dominic and Saint Catherine of Siena ,also, St. Anne and St Mary and St. Joseph and the child Jesus. The master Altar dated 1787,  altarpiece of the Sacred Heart, Chapel of Death (altarpiece),  the pulpit dates from the 17C. The figures of the rim of the cupola represent the evangelists: a man for Matthew, a lion for Mark, an ox for Luke and an eagle for John.

The Church ,also has a beautiful series of six stained glass windows Arts Deco style, set up between 1925 and 1930. They are due to Henri-Marcel Magne, also the stained glass painter for the Sacré-Coeur of Montmartre Paris, and they were made by the workshops of the Church in Paris. Their restoration was completed in 1999.

Lannion

Lannion

Lannion

The Chapel of Collège Saint-Joseph, built from 1935 to 1938 . in the filiation of the Seiz Breur. The Church of Brélévenez, and its staircase of 142 steps that leads to the bottom of the city. The other Churches: Sainte Marguerite in Buhulien, Saint Ivy in Loguivy-lès-Lannion, Saint Pierre in Servel. Also, the Saint Roch Chapel, 15-16C. The Ursuline Convent. The monastery of Sainte-Anne transformed partially fin 2006 into a media library, the several half-timbered houses.

The Château du Cruguil, 15C you can see it in Summers. This former residence of the family of Lannion was transformed into a farmhouse from the 17C. In the 19C, the castle passed through the marriage of the last of Lannion to the family of Mac-Mahon, who transmitted it at the end of the 19C to the Earl of Lur-Saluces whose daughter married Baron Édouard Hainguerlot, former mayor of Brélevenez. It has been in this family since.

Le Château de Kerivon D65  road in private hands but to look on the outside, the Manoir de Langonaval, 15C, you can visit in Summers. Le Manoir de Kerprigent, exterior visitable by appointment.  Lannion also has two superb beaches to Beg Léguer and two mooring sites offering 176 boat places.

Some webpages to help you plan your trip are

City of Lannion on heritage

Tourists office of North Brittany on St Jean du Baly Church

Hope it helps you enjoy this area, nice and coastal pretty towns abound. Great for a weekend getaway and we are always looking for that !!

And remember, happy travels , good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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