Archive for May, 2020

May 31, 2020

The villas of Dinard!

And why not come back to my beloved Bretagne, and take you to a place written before but figure on the emblematic villas of Dinard need to tell you more. Hope you enjoy this architectural delight tour!

Dinard is gorgeous and the best for us were the beaches ! Dinard means elevated hill and in Breton it is Dinarzh.  It is a famous seaside resort, particularly with the British and the Americans, for its Belle Époque villas and the British Film Festival which has been held there every year since the 1990s. It is considered with its classified villas, its casino and its cultural events as one of the most prestigious seaside resorts in France.

The seaside resort of Dinard is located on the Emerald Coast, in dept 35 Ille et Vilaine, near the border with Côtes-d’Armor dept 22 and the town of Saint-Malo separated by the Rance. It is the Rance tidal power plant, located in the town of La Richardais,  a technological feat of the 1960s and a tourist hotspot, which connects Dinard and Saint-Malo.   Dinard brings together the aristocracy, political figures and intellectuals from all over the continent who no longer stay solely in their private villas and frequent the most luxurious hotels: Albert I, Raymond Poincaré, Agatha Christie, Victor Hugo, Édouard VII, George V , Winston Churchill, Judith Gautier, Jacqueline Kennedy, Lawrence of Arabia (in his childhood), Edmond Rostand, and Paul Valéry all spent holidays in Dinard. Pablo Picasso painted his series of paintings Les Baigneuses à Dinard, or the swimmers in Dinard , inspired by the less and less hidden nudity of bathers.

Dinard is the first seaside resort in France to safeguard its architectural heritage from the end of the 19C by classifying 407 villas and buildings. The Dinard villas have made the resort’s reputation and constitute a considerable architectural heritage. If most of them are concentrated in the luxury housing district of the Malouine. Most of the villas and missing buildings that were destroyed in the 1970s and 1980s. At that time, Dinard fell into oblivion and poorly survived the flight of the wealthy tourists of yesteryear..The houses if we can them that , more like mansions or small castles of the belle époque period are superb; can’t wait to get my hand on one of them ::).

And this is the topic of this post. On the villas or mansions of Dinard, splendid architectural history with many great names over the  years and a superb ride by car or bike along the ocean’s edge. Recommended.  Could not take pictures of all of them but did some just for a sampler it is all superbe!!!

You have wonderful villa reine Hortense, (queen of Holland) who vacationed here built by the Russian lover prince Nicolas Vlassov who was passionate of the life of the mother of Napoléon III.  The mansion continue too numerous all wonderful such as the villa Cézembre with a stair bringing you down to the beach and the villa Greystones of art deco style. Here more villas such as Saint Germain built in 1870, the pont d’emeraude with great views of the ocean and the villa La Garde tudor style construction , up on blvd Féart and see the villa Montplaisir very so British style.

The famous villa at the Pointe de la Malouine, belonging to the businessman François Pinault, The villa Greystones was built from 1938 on a front plot sea from the tip of Malouine. It is of granite and concrete vessel overhanging the sea, the house, covered with a roof terrace and extended by a cantilevered rotunda, seems cut to face the elements, like the military works built in front of it, while drawing from the formal repertoire of 18C follies, an intimate and comfortable haven on a human scale. It is accompanied by a Mediterranean-style garden, made up of a succession of terraces connected by stairs and winding alleys, and decorated with sculptures by Alfred Janniot.


Villa Ker Alice, known as Villa Ker Kenta, 1 rue Roger Vercel. Resort house built around 1914 on the beach of Saint-Enogat. Large house, with one square floor and two attic floors. The floors are separated by a horizontal cement strip. Complex type plan with recessed façades. Overhanging roof with underarms and half rump forming gable on the facade. The entrance to the courtyard is sheltered by a wooden awning. A bow window upstairs once enlarged a room with a sea view. Imposing cement terrace with balustrade railings.


Villa Les Embruns 5 rue Roger Vercel .Beautiful and large family Villa of 200 m2.  This old 19C forge with the purest Anglo-Norman spirit , and a  large garden of 450 m2, the beach is only 10 mins walk. It was lived by writer Roger Vercel Prix Goncourt 1934. His memories of war inspired him to write some of his first books such as Notre Père Trajan, Capitaine Conan, and Léna, but it was the maritime world that was at the heart of his work. In 1934, Roger Vercel meets Louis Malbert, captain of the tug Iroise, who inspires him to write the novel Remorques; also the title of the film taken from this novel by Jean Grémillon in 1941 in which the role of Captain Malbert is held by Jean Gabin. Au Large de l’Eden won him the Prix du Comité Fémina France-Amérique in 1932. He won the Goncourt Prize in 1934 for Capitaine Conan, a partially autobiographical novel.


The Villa st Germain at the Plage de l’Ecluse; originally called villa Mortemart built by François de Rochechouart, viscount of Mortemart, between 1868 and 1874. It is from the Pointe du Malouine, in a dominant position, that you will discover the breathtaking views that Villa St Germain offers. The park of more than one hectare is fully enclosed and has two outbuildings. A pretty chapel on the water will invite you to calm and contemplation. Located in the city center, everything is done on foot, a private staircase will give you access to the lock beach directly.


The Villa known as Port-Riou, also known as Château de Port-Riou, 24 boulevard de la Mer . Residence built on the cliff on the edge of Port-Riou beach between 1879 and 1882. Implantation on the seafront on a large plot delimited by a buttress terrace. Logis with stepped gables. West facade with half-staircase staircase covered with a polygonal roof. Facade is wooden gallery. A water tower, located east of the plot on a promontory, was powered by a wind energy pump located to the west opposite the house. Outdoor stairs to the beach.


The  Chalet des Bruyères, avenue Cézembre, Pointe de la Malouine I took the picture but not much on it, only that it is in many sites as a rental property .Most of the above are also available for rental if you can pay the price.


Some webpages as usual by me to help you plan your trip here and it is recommended are

The city of Dinard on its heritage and history: City of Dinard on its heritage and history

The Dinard tourist office there is at blvd Férat in city center: Tourist office of Dinard

Dinard Ille et Vilaine dept 35  tourist office: Dept 35 ille et vilaine tourist office on Dinard

Region of Brittany tourist office on DinardRegion of Brittany tourist office on Dinard

And there you go folks, you are all set for a wonderful visit to the Villas of Dinard, and its beaches and all of it. A great spot up the road from me and loving it in Bretagne. Enjoy the tour…

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

May 31, 2020

Quiberon and the Côte Sauvage!!!

And this is my backyard for the last several years of our living in the Morbihan 56 of Bretagne. Sure, there has been many other trips and posts, but this is our home away from home. This is the presqu’ïle de Quiberon or peninsula and all the way to the town of Quiberon. Of course, I have written several posts on it but let me tell you a bit more as we can again travel.


The Côte Sauvage or wild coast extends on the western part of the peninsula from the village of Portivy, in Saint-Pierre-Quiberon, to Port Maria, in Quiberon. All wonderful. I will be brief as plenty told in previous posts and just wanted to give you new photos after the confinement from the wuhan virus.

The Côte Sauvage, facing west, extends over 8 km from Château Turpault to Pointe du Percho. Owned by the Conservatoire du littoral, the Côte Sauvage is constantly harassed by the sea and the winds. Even in calm weather, the waves crash noisily on the steep cliffs, causing spurts of foam. Erosion has shaped countless coves, reefs, caves and arches which are only revealed at low tide. The cliffs are covered with a cushion of short grass where small pink flowers bloom: the carnation and the maritime armory.


To discover the Côte Sauvage from the Chateau Turpault, take the coastal road dotted with numerous parking areas and follow the coastal path. You will discover the old Vivier, the Trou du souffleur, the Port Kerné fountain, the Pointe de Kervihan where the fortifications of a Neolithic camp, Port Bara and its cave visible at low tide, Port Blanc beach and its arch , the Pointe du Percho dominated by the remains of a customs post, and finally the Pointe de Beg en Aud and its Venetian camp.


The côte sauvage on Quiberon; from the tourist office of the Bay of Quiberon in English: Tourist office Bay of Quiberon on the wild coast

The côte sauvage on Saint Pierre de Quiberon in English: Tourist office of Bay of Quiberon on the wild coast by St Pierre de Quiberon

Ok folks this is the ride optimum wonderful wild and beautiful with the blue vast Atlantic ocean on your right hand side going to the tip of Quiberon Grande Plage from the mainland coming from home (if coming from Vannes take the N165 direction Brest and get off at exit/sortie 33 for Quiberon) on the road D768 direction Quiberon. Passing Plouharnel you entered into the isthmus passing on your right the musem of the war of the west (chouans) and the railroad track of the tire-bouchon train (from Auray open in summer with risk of been stop altogether). You continue on the D768 and passing several earlier beaches such as Mané and Mentor; you passed the Fort de Penthiévre (see posts) on your right hand side and the ocean beaches. Awesome. You take right by Portivy and follow signs for the Côte Sauvage. Here you can see the Port de Portivy but very narrow streets if not used to driving skip and continue direction Côte Sauvage now on the road D186 A. By Porz Stang the coastal ride really begins. You passed by the memorial to lifesavers at sea and the sights of the cliffs begins. Several parking or stops are available along the road to view the magnificent views of the cliffs. You can even have a wonderful seafood meal at the Les Viviers restaurant our favoirte we stopped there often for oysters and muscadet white wine. And you continue along the wild coast or Côte Sauvage, the splendid wonderful ride along the edge of the Atlantic ocean. You see the approach to the Castle of Turpault a private property and the entry into Quiberon, and then the quai de Houat with pleasure boats and the SNSM lifesavers house that protect you from casualties at sea and the fisherman cooperative ,than the Port Maria beach and the gare maritime or cruisers passenger terminal. Here you stopped or go around Port Maria as the road to the Grande Plage or big beach is off from vehicular traffic. You have reach the fabled big beach , Grande Plage, wonderful and sublime our ending point always.





Sometimes we go on to Pointe de Conquel and its beach or continue to the beach of Porigo before reaching the wonderful harbor or port Haliguen and its wonderful pleasure marina and its lighthouse. This is the presqu’ïle de Quiberon at its best; a wonderful ride and of course plenty of walks in heavens. Hope you enjoy the ride and do visit it is recommended by yours truly.


The tourist office of Bay de Quiberon on QuiberonTourist office of Bay of Quiberon on Quiberon

The tourist office of Brittany on QuiberonTourist office of Brittany on Quiberon

The conservatory of the littoral that is the management of the wild coast or Côte Sauvage in French: Conservatory of the LIttoral on the Cote Sauvage

Of course, we saw the beach and there was already many there, and we took advantage of our must on the beach, the ice creams at the Quai des Glaces right on the Grande Plage. We took our norma walk for the first time in 2 months on the Esplanade de Hoche. This feels good at last at Quiberon

We even took a ride into Port Haliguen even with a lot of road construction we manage to reach it for a closer look. This is all very nice and we are glad to be back,; looking forward to more time here in the future. Maybe a meeting point for the readers of my blog ::) The presqu’ïle de Quiberon or peninsula is unique and we encourage you to see it and enjoy it as we do; remember Quiberon.

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

May 31, 2020

Saint Pierre de Quiberon!!

Now let’s swing you back to my department 56 Morbihan in my beautiful Bretagne. This town I passed several times and is part of the wonderful Presqu’ïle de Quiberon peninsula, heavens on the beach/coast side and only 40 minutes from my house. Obviously I have written plenty in my blog on it but it really needs more, so much beauty to see around here , all natural and the car is king. Let me tell you a bit on Saint Pierre de Quiberon.

Saint-Pierre-Quiberon is located on the south coast of the Morbihan department 56 and the Brittany region. Saint-Pierre-Quiberon constitutes the northern part of the Quiberon peninsula, the town of Quiberon occupying the southern part. Saint-Pierre-Quiberon became a full-fledged town in 1856, under the name of Saint-Pierre, and took its current name in 1962  The town has 13 beaches! accessible to swimmers, ten beaches on the bay side .Of course our favorites are in Penthièvre   bay side and Penthièvre ocean side, On the west coast of the peninsula, the Côte Sauvage, renowned and beautiful driving or biking along clifs and the wide blue ocean in front of you on 6.7 km of road and the property of the coastal conservatory. Most of the famous sites on the Côte Sauvage, such as the Port-Blanc arch, are located in the town of Saint-Pierre-Quiberon.

Saint pierre de quiberon

However, Penthièvre is the northernmost village of Saint-Pierre-Quiberon. It is bounded to the north by the Quiberon national forest located in the town limits of Plouharnel, to the east by Quiberon bay, to the west by the ocean, and to the south by the village of Kerhostin. It is in Penthièvre that the isthmus is located which forms the entrance to the Quiberon peninsula. I have written on these places in my blog this is additional material and photos.

The Fort of Penthièvre is a fortified structure placed at the entrance to the Quiberon peninsula commands access to the level of the isthmus at its narrowest point. Following the siege of Lorient and the looting of the Quiberon peninsula in 1746, the construction of a new defensive structure was decided in 1747 as part of a more general framework for strengthening the defenses of the southern Brittany coast. This effort was undertaken by the governor of Brittany at the time, Louis Jean Marie de Bourbon, Duke of Penthièvre, who will give it his name . The fort is built on an escarpment calle La Palice at narrowest spot on the peninsula.

saint pierre de quiberon

In 1795, the Royalists landed on the peninsula coming from England (the immigrant Bretons) and besieged the fort on June 27, renamed Fort Sans-Culotte, which eventually fell after four days, its defenders being short of food. Eventually 400 out of the 700 that the fort counted , then agreed to enlist in the Catholic and Royal army. Signaling the end of the expedition, it will be stopped by General Hoche’s troops (the pacifiers of the uprisings against the French revolution). In 1800, at the instigation of the First Consul Napoleon, and Armand de Marescot, the fort was reinforced and modernized while France had just defeated the Second Coalition. During WWII, the Nazis forces integrated this fort into their Atlantic Wall. It also served as a prison and place of execution at the end of the war: 59 resistance fighters died there between April and July 1944, including 50 on July 13, 1944. A monument was erected on the site behind the fort in their memory. The 3rd Marine Infantry Regiment of Vannes has used it as a training base since 1969.

Saint Pierre Quiberon

The fort is off limits the monument can be visited. Here is the Min of Defense of France on the fort in French: Ministry of Defense of France on Fort Penthievre

Memorial webpage on the resistance executed there and behind there is the cave where they were killed with a stone memorial , more in French here: Memorial on the executed of 1940 1944 at Ponthiévre

The tourist office of Bay of Quiberon on the Fort Penthiévre  in French (more info): Tourist office Bay of Quiberon on the Fort

Another great moment to be here and we love it are the beaches. This is a laidback beach town as you can recall any and I grew up on one and lived next to them for many years of my life, I still enjoy going to them if for different reasons.

Penthièvre Beach in Saint-Pierre-de-Quiberon is the first beach on the Quiberon peninsula. It extends on the continent at the level of the town of Plouharnel, making it the largest beach on the peninsula with several km of white sand. It is bordered by dunes call the falaise or cliff. You can practice sand yachting, kitesurfing and surfing. Please note, you are on the west coast, the ocean can be rough with the east side on the bay more protected. To get to this beach, take the D768 road (straight down from me)  towards Quiberon. At the entrance to the peninsula, at the La Penthièvre sign, there is a car park on the left near the level crossing. The beach is on the right ,you have to cross the road. Note that dogs on a leash have been tolerated on this beach are allowed ,the only one on the Quiberon peninsula.

saint pierre de quiberon

saint pierre de quiberon

saint pierre de quiberon

The plages tv webpage that has been my favorite for many years on beach information in France in English: Beaches of Penthievre

Tourist office of Brittany on the beach at Penthiévre in English: Tourist office of Brittany on Penthiévre beach

And there you go we live in heavens in land and so close to the marvelous Breton coast filled with hundreds if not thousands of beaches and all fun related to the sea. And do you know the Bretons are the best marines! Hope you enjoy the Saint Pierre de Quiberon area.

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

May 30, 2020

Verneuil sur Seine!

So now let me tackle another nostalgic spot for me and my family in our belle France. Nothing fancy not a tourist destination but oh so dear to us. Part of living the good life in the countryside of the Yvelines. Let me tell you the story of Verneuil sur Seine!

The story goes that we first came into France to live permanently as French citizens, we had to find schools for the boys as well as all. Been that they came after ,me in August and ,they in December 2003   (due to my job), the school year was started and no place was found in Versailles. So we end up so they speed up quickly the French the mother has taught them started them in elementary school in Verneuil sur Seine and this is the story of the town. Forever in our hearts!

Verneuil-sur-Seine is a town in the Yvelines dept 78 of the ïle de France region. It is about 17 km from Saint Germain en Laye and 28 km from Versailles. It is, also about 40 km from Paris. Verneuil-sur-Seine benefits from very exceptional rail and road connections to Paris. As well as a privileged geographical location between the banks of the Seine river, the Verneuil ponds, the Verneuil forest massif and the agricultural lands of the Groux plateau. The name is explained from 2 Gallic words: “vernos” which designates the verne and “ialos” which means the clearing, the cleared place and finally, the village. Verneuil is, literally, the village built with the vernes so they say.

A bit of history I like

The discovery of sarcophagi suggests that the territory of Verneuil-sur-Seine was inhabited in the Merovingian period and several charters attest that the existence of the village dates back to a remote period of the Middle Ages. In the 12C, the land of Verneuil was on the list of possessions for the house of Montmorency. It then passed into the Narbonne family, then in the 15C, to Mary Bureau who sold the fiefs, the lands and the lordships of Verneuil and Vernouillet with their memberships and their dependencies, to Estienne Alleaume, squire and lord of La Motte, in 1517.  Later, Count Hervé de Tocqueville, loving wealth, honors and power, lived in Verneuil as a great lord, surrounded by a large family and receiving a host of guests, including Chateaubriand. In 1804, the Count de Toqueville accepted from the Emperor Napoléon I , whom he did not hesitate to call the usurper the day after his fall, the functions of mayor of Verneuil, which he exercised until 1814.

We came up from Versailles on Rue Neuve Notre Dame to rue des reservoirs or D186 same road but now call bd du Roi into Place de la Loi and left on bd Saint Antoine   past Parly II shopping center and Arboretum (see posts) continue same road now call Rue de Versailles then loop road into the A13 autoroute de Normandie direction Rouen connect with the D113 at Orgeval and past La Maison Blanche turn right into the D154 road into Verneuil sur Seine, by BNP Paribas bank turn left into rue de Bazincourt and into the collége Jean Zay. Hopefully I taugh my Dad how to get there and he did the roundtrip with my Mom.. Always appreciated this big help!

And who was Jean Zay ? He was born August 6, 1904 in Orléans and died assassinated by the French Militia collaborators (nazis) on June 20, 1944 in Molles (Allier),he was a French lawyer and politician. He was Under-Secretary of State for the Presidency of the Council, Minister of National Education and Fine Arts, Member of Parliament for Loiret and General Councilor. The school here that bears his name and my boys went webpage in French here: Collége Jean Zay Verneuil sur Seine

verneuil sur seine

In other transport modes:

The city of Verneuil sur Seine has two Transilien-train stations operated by the SNCF: I passed by it sometimes on the Vernouillet-Verneuil station, actually located at theentrance to the city on the edge of the town of Vernouillet. It is located next to the Notre-Dame Les Oiseaux school (old castle). The less frequented by all is the Clairières de Verneuil train station, located at the other side of the city on the edge of the Verneuil forest. These two stations are served by line J of the Paris-Saint-Lazare network. This line travels Paris-Saint-Lazare <> Mantes-la-Jolie by Poissy or Houilles-Carrières. You can ,also, reach here on the RER A from Paris Gare de Lyon – Poissy: get off at Poissy, take the regular train towards Mantes and get off at Vernouillet / Verneuil station or Clairières de Verneuil station.  Next to the Vernouillet-Verneuil train station is the bus station . Plenty of bus service by the Transdev group, which operates 18 lines, but never taken it here. There is the L’Express A14 highway bus that passes by Verneuil and goes to La Défense in 30 minutes claimed but never taken it. . The main road here is the D154 linking Orgeval to Les Mureaux, parallel to the A13 autoroute de Normandie.  

Some of the things to see here are

Saint-Martin’s Church The church dates from the 12C and the 13C was rebuilt several times. The basement of the church has a much older history than its walls suggest; the foundation of the church actually dates back to the first Middle Ages, the Carolingian era (9-10C). Indeed, a rectangular church, with an apse with rounded angles and a flat apse, could be identified under the choir of the current church. No act indicates the precise date of the foundation of the Saint-Martin Church of Verneuil, but from 1790, the parish is attached to the diocese of Versailles.

There is a beautiful 12C castle built by the Montmorency family, and modified since. The castle preserves, before the 16C, its cellars, its dovecote and its vaulted outbuildings. In 1773, the Renaissance style manor house was decorated with facades in the fashion of the time with false windows, pediments, and garlands. The castle has been uninhabited for 15 years when its new owners arrived in late August-early September 1929. They are nuns from the Notre Dame congregation, a congregation born in 1597 from the intuition of Alix Le Clerc and Pierre Fourier. The sisters founded the Notre Dame des Oiseaux school. In the 18C, the castle underwent profound modifications. The execution of the Countess de Senozan, Anne Nicole de Lamoignon, owner of the land and the lordship since 1780 and sister of Malesherbes,   gave rise to the confiscation of her property, the prison of Port-Royal and guillotined in May 1794 , and the castle remained in receivership until 1802, then fell, in 1807, to Louise Magdeleine Le Peletier-Rosanbo, wife of Count Hervé de Tocqueville. It is today the Notre Dame des Oiseaux private school.

There is a huge acitivities park with plenty of fields and lake and fun for the entire family we encounted a couple of times, this is great in Summer for the whole family , call the Ïle de Loisirs du Val de Seine; more info in French here:

Verneuil sur seine

Small town but pack a load of the famous such as François-René de Chateaubriand , French romantic writer and politician, lived a few years in Verneuil and wrote several chapters of his Memoirs from beyond the grave in the park of the castle, today a private educational institution Notre –Dame des Oiseaux. Alexis de Tocqueville , French political thinker, historian and writer, lived part of his childhood at the castle of Verneuil-sur-Seine. His father, Hervé Clérel de Tocqueville, prefect and peer of France, was mayor of the town from 1804 to 1814. Émile Zola , naturalist writer. When he lived in the neighboring town of Médan, in the 1890s, Zola regularly came by bicycle to Verneuil to visit his mistress, Jeanne Rozerot and his two children, Denise and Jacques. And Dwight D. Eisenhower , one of the main figures in the liberation of France during WWII. The Manoir du Champclos, in Verneuil, was occupied by the nazis until the arrival of the Americans in 1945. General Eisenhower, then a 5-star general of the American army and commander-in-chief of the Allied forces in Europe and his officers dine there and rest there for a few hours.

The city of  Verneuil sur Seine on its history and heritage in French : City of Verneuil sur Seine on its heritage and history

And there you go another soft spot in my belle France for me and so sad not enough pictures to show as on those days, we were just living here and no internet guru no blog no need for pictures as have post cards collection of over 4K from 76 countries. The photos and posts came much later; so bear with me on this one.

Nevertheless, hope you enjoy the reading and do stop by for a bit of à la Française real living surrounded by architecture and history as usual in my belle France. Enjoy Verneuil sur Seine in the Yvelines!

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

May 30, 2020

Some news from France, CCCVI

Well is about time we get back to normal and me too with my series of Some news from France! We are slowly but surely coming out with a lot more loosening it up on June 2nd and then further opening by June 22nd. Stay tune , France is back!

Update no time to wait for another Some news from France; Info on Notre Dame Cathedral!  The Parvis or  square of Notre-Dame reopened today Sunday, Pentecost Day. The dismantling of the scaffolding 10,000 bent and welded metal tubes – which have already started in their preparatory phase, will enter from June 8 “in the last phase”!!! Notre-Dame is the emblem of Paris, more than the Eiffel Tower, and is the zero point in Paris to measure distances in France!. Should a chapel be installed on the forecourt before 2024? Mgr Michel Aupetit indicated that there would be “probably something more modest”, the rector evoking a possible “representation of the Virgin” in this place where millions of visitors pass each year.

“Phase 2” of the deconfinement was launched Thursday by the government. If on the whole territory, the “indicators are green”, Ile-de-France is one of the three regions classified in orange zone (with Mayotte and Guyana). This Saturday the gates open on all of the 400 or so parks and gardens in the city, the Parisians returned to the Gardens of Bagatelles, coulee vert, petite ceinture, Arboretum, small squares etc. The playgrounds will be gradually reopened. Individual sports activities are authorized if you are a fan of tai chi or yoga, prohibited if it is a football tournament or any other team sport.

The symbols of a French art of living, the terraces of cafes and restaurants will once again be able to welcome customers from June 2 in Ile-de-France. But those who lack it feel aggrieved. Reduction of tables need 60% minimum filled if not they can close before the end of the year for 40% of restaurant owners according to the chefs. This really makes us smile! Phase 3 of the deconfinement will be tackled on June 22, when it is likely that cafes and restaurants can also welcome us inside their establishments. It remains to be seen under what conditions.

It’s official. The Galeries Lafayette on Boulevard Haussmann (9éme) reopen today Saturday. A relief for both employees and management after two and a half months of total shutdown. Victory for the legendary brand on Boulevard Haussmann: Au Printemps was able to reopen this past Thursday, May 28.

 Two emblematic sites in the history and cultural life of Val-d’Oise 95 will reopen their doors this weekend. In Vexin, the latter have already been present in numbers for two weeks. They will be able to visit the fascinating castle of La Roche-Guyon again from Saturday. The fruit garden will only reopen on June 6. A specific itinerary at Royaumont abbey also comes out of sleep. monument built in the 13C in Asnières-sur-Oise. And it also offers a renewed vision of the abbey.

So sad to read the Fête des Loges in Saint-Germain-en-Laye which has been officially canceled. A wonderful fair in the woods or forest of Saint Germain en Laye we went couple times wonderful memories. The Ferme de Gally of Saint-Cyr-l’Ecole is as we have never seen it. Empty of people!! . Or almost. Reopened since May 13, the famous educational farm had to adapt to the health crisis. The number of visitors is limited and the public is necessarily less numerous than usual to wander in its meadows, around the animal enclosures.

The company that handle the pedal boat rides on the Seine river, the Société Marin d’Eau Douce announce the opening of its facility in Meaux (Seine-et-Marne 77) since May 21. Parisians need to take advantage of it as La Villette is still close.

Since May 11, and at least until the end of the epidemic, cars have been banned from the famous rue de Rivoli in Paris! This street leading from Saint-Paul to the Concorde. The Samaritaine complex, is still no one there. Scheduled for last April, the opening of the historic department store bought by LVMH in 2000 is postponed due to Covid-19. After fifteen years of work and 750 million euros of investment, the complex could open next February 2021 . For now , you can already admire its corrugated glass facade signed Kazuyo Sejima. This is a beautiful artery and well taken even worked off of it for several years. A bit of nostalgia is that In 1800, in place of rue de Rivoli, there was a large network of unhealthy alleys. To link the Palais-Royal to the Concorde, Napoleon I drilled a first part of this axis between 1811 and 1835. He named it after a victorious battle in Italy. The works are of general interest, the necessary expropriations. Among the forty or so demolished streets, that of Mauvais-Garçons is a cut-throat where criminals find girls of joy. In 1850, under Napoleon III, Baron Haussmann extended Rivoli to the east and linked the Louvre to the Bastille. In the shops under the new arcades, a decree of 1852 prohibited the use of the hammer and the burning oven. Yes indeed history of my eternal Paris!

As of   today Saturday, the Claude Monet’s house in Giverny reopens its doors and its famous gardens which so inspired his genius. Indeed, after three months of closure, the magnificent pink building with green shutters takes us back on a journey back in time, to meet one of the masters of Impressionism. To access it, wearing a mask is compulsory for everyone and not provided. Hydroalcoholic gel will also be available for all to use. The Claude Monet Foundation will be open every day from 9h30 to 18h until November 1, 2020.

From June 15 and if the health situation allows, France is also in favor of reopening the European borders without a fortnight for European nationals. Regarding the external borders to Europe, they will remain closed until June 15, 2020, at least.

Since the end of April, the period at which the foxes who lived at Père-Lachaise cemetery were seen by the curator of the cemetery, the Paris City Hall considered having to move them. Now, it has been confirmed, the little family can stay there without forced deconfinement, and we secretly hope to be able to see babies as young as two months old from afar without disturbing them, of course. I saw this on TV and they look cute but they are foxes about 6 of them, be careful.

And last but a bargain perhaps the price of real estate in Paris has come down ! A first for a long time. Drimki, a specialist in online property valuation, says housing prices fell 5% in the city on March 16 due to the confinement. If you had to plan at the start of the year 13,070 € / m2 on average to buy a property in the center of the city, you now have to count 11,581 € / m2. A nice drop of almost 1,500 € per m2! Yes my dear you are reading right, this is just double what it cost in Versailles for example and out in the Morbihan you could buy a castle!!! And you know Hemingway was not a good traveller, he wrote posthumously the Movable Feast for Paris but if he had travelled a bit into the country; could easily wrote a second volume, France is a movable feast! I say!!!

And there you go folks , some news from France is back alive and well. We will be reading the new and grand of my belle France, and of course, slowly opening up everything. Even no more 100 km limits, so off I go preparing my vacations again. Stay tune, France is back!!

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

May 30, 2020

Monument to Pershing and Lafayette!

So getting my delights in my old home now, and telling a bit more expanded views on some of its wonderful monuments off the beaten path indeed. I have written briefly on it but feels they deserve more, so here is my take on the Monument Pershing Lafayette of Versailles!

The Pershing – Lafayette monument is a memorial located on the heights of Versailles , department 78 Yvelines in the ïle de France region. My old home for almost 10 years. The monument was erected on the one hand in tribute to the American army which fought during the Great War or WWI and to the army of the war of American independence, on the other hand. The monument was inaugurated on October 6, 1937 in the presence of General Pershing, but the monument erected remained unfinished. The very degraded plaster statue of General Pershing was deposited in 1941.


The Pershing-Lafayette-Versailles association undertook, with the help of generous donors (moi aussi) , to install the final statues of the two generals whose plaster model was deposited in 1941. On September 8, 2017, the statues of Generals Pershing and La Fayette are inaugurated. The memorial has two concrete pedestals that face each other on Avenue des Etats-Unis. They are in fact pedestals which support the equestrian statues of General Pershing and Lafayette. Built hastily, these were made of reinforced concrete sails, only one of the 4 stairs is made of stone. The two reinforced concrete bases intended to receive the equestrian statues are about 9 meters high raised on 2 benches pierced on either side of two staircases distant from the road by a grassy ground. Each base was surmounted by an equestrian statue about 5 meters high in patinated bronze plaster for the inauguration of October 6, 1937.


Coming from Versailles, the monument on the right is dedicated to La Fayette and recalls the battles in which he participated in the USA War of Independence, the monument on the left is dedicated to General Pershing and recalls the battles to which this general took part with the American Expeditionary Force (as the US Army coming to France was named. A unique symbol of Franco-American friendship. The equestrian statues of Generals Pershing and La Fayette were inaugurated on the Butte de Picardie, avenue des Etats-Unis or road D185 in Versailles direction Ville d’Avray (see post).

For those on public transport from the Versailles Château rive gauche RER C station take bus line 10 direction Vaucresson and stop at Versailles Pershing. Also from Versailles Chantiers train station take bus line 13 direction Versailles Pershing final stop. When in the area use this vianavigo itinerary planner its official :  Phebus bus network Versailles and vianavigo journey planner

A bit more info can be read in French from the The US WWI Centennial Commission :Pershing Lafayette Versailles commission

And the L’Association des riverains Etats-Unis Pershing (association of neighborhood Avenue des Etats Unis Pershing): Neighborhood association avenue Etats Unis on of Pershing

There you go a nice place to be and pay our respect while indulging in a big of Franco-American history, cooperation, and friendship that goes back to the founding of the USA.  Hope you enjoy the story and can visit these wonderful equestrian monuments to La Fayette and Pershing in my beloved dear Versailles.

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

May 30, 2020

St Cyr l’école!!!

And coming back to my old stumping road warrior area ,and catching up on my many photos to bring you new areas and ideas to visit my belle France, here is a new one. Well , I have written on the farm very famous there but now let me tell you a bit about the town itself, this is Saint Cyr l’école!!

Saint-Cyr-l’École is located in the department 78 of Yvelines, in the Île-de-France region. The town of Saint-Cyr-l’École is just birds view only 21.5 km from Paris Notre Dame Cathedral. It is bordered by the towns   of Versailles to the east, Guyancourt to the south, Montigny-le-Bretonneux to the south-southwest, Bois -d’Arcy to the southwest, Fontenay-le-Fleury to the west and Bailly to the north. Areas truly visited as lived nearby…and plenty of activities with the boys on them.

Plentiful road access that is tops. The main road is the D10 connecting Versailles (by the Orangerie side) to Rambouillet and regional road D11 connecting Saint-Cyr-l’École to Plaisir (and great shopping area). In the immediate vicinity is the Bois-d’Arcy interchange between the A12 highway, on a north-south axis which connects the triangle from Rocquencourt to Trappes on the N 10,and north with the A13 autoroute de Normandie, the N 12, connects Dreux at the A86 highway.

The  Saint-Cyr train station,of the Transilien network is on the N line connecting Paris to Rambouillet / Plaisir – Grignon / Mantes-la-Jolie, the station is not served by trains from Dreux. The station or Gare de Saint Cyr is located on the line connecting Paris-Montparnasse to Chartres and is at the point of the junction giving access to the Granville line via Plaisir – Grignon and Dreux. Direct commuter train services are provided to Paris-Montparnasse via Versailles-Chantiers. RER C connecting Saint Martin d’Étampes to Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, serving Paris-Austerlitz via Invalides. And the train U line connecting La Défense to La Verrière.

Keolis Yvelines is serving the lines, 52, 53 and 54 of the Phebus bus network  in Versailles . You can find all these buses  and trains at the somewhat new ïle de France Mobilités (old STIF) site here: All transports ile de France region Mobilités

A historic city at the gates of Versailles, Saint-Cyr-l’École shines in the Yvelines department 78. The Maison de Saint-Louis founded by Madame de Maintenon, then transformed by Napoleon into a Military School has notably ensured its reputation.
The history of the city begins at the end of the 11C, when the monks of the Sainte-Geneviève Abbey in Paris decided to set up, on the edge of the ru de Gally, a chapel and a priory with its farm, to evangelize and clear the valley.

In 1686 the royal house of Saint-Louis was founded, an education house for 250 young girls, by Madame de Maintenon and whose construction was entrusted to Jules Hardouin-Mansart. In 1808, in the same buildings, the Special Military School was established. This school, founded in 1802 in Fontainebleau by Napoleon I and then transferred to Saint-Cyr, remained there until 1940, when it was withdrawn to Aix-en-Provence.  The buildings of Saint-Cyr are then seriously affected by the Allied bombings of 1944 and the school is recreated in 1945, but in Coëtquidan ( my Morbihan 56 see post) under the name of Special military school of Saint-Cyr.

The city of St Cyr l’école on its history and heritage in French: City of St Cyr on history and heritage

The city was 92% damaged by the bombings of WWII.  In 1995, Saint-Cyr officially received the 1939-1945 War Cross with palm, which had been awarded to it forty-five years earlier for acts of resistance and for its exemplary attitude under the bombing but which the town of the day had refused.

Saint-Cyr-l’École aerodrome (nice) occupies an area of ​​75 hectares, or 15% of Saint-Cyrien territory. On the eastern side, it adjoins the park of the Palace of Versailles! and stretches north to the rue de Gally. He is a historic player in the plain of Versailles. It was indeed in 1907 that the Count de La Vaulx had a hangar built at the gates of the town to house an aeronate, more simply called an airship. The same year, Santos-Dumont managed to link Saint-Cyr-l’École to Buc at a speed of 90 kph on board his Demoiselle monoplane. It is on this aircraft that Roland Garros will learned to fly. Three years later, this is where the tests of the La Liberté airship were carried out. Today, the aerodrome is home to nine air clubs gathered within GUAS, the Saint-Cyr-l’École aerodrome users’ group, and is attended by a thousand enthusiasts; including me on old light planes air shows!

The aerodrome today is managed by Aéroports de Paris, the site in English here: Paris airports on aerodrome St Cyr

And just a friendly reminder,(see prev post) for what we came here the most and love it and still waiting to go back, the Ferme de Gally!

My family’s favorite place in St Cyr l’école, the Ferme de Gally. Yes a farm, but not an ordinary farm. It was acquired in 1684 by Louis XIV to supply the court of milk products. It is at the end of the Grand Canal, yes the one you think ends by the boat lakes, but its actually goes way back, keep walking …. all along the allée de la Ceinture. The farm is still today in activity, handle by the same family since 1741!!! It is one of the oldest building in the area ,originally founded in the 11C by the priests of the abbey of Sainte-Geneviéve-du-mont at Paris to plow and put into use the lands around the plains of Versailles.  It was call after the val de galie, a stream,that since then was change to Gally. We can continue today follow the stream, from the allée du Plat Fond just to the small village of Rennemoulin off the D307 and very picturesque horse country today.  At the beginning by 1038, this stream gave the name to Versailles because the lord of these lands was named Hugo de Versaillis. Yes indeed part of my history too you know….

St Cyr

Official webpage in French for the Ferme de Gally, see the picture this gate (see prev post for a closer look than the one above) goes or used to go into the domaine de Versailles to provide the kings with food! Les Fermes de Gally

Hope you enjoy the ride into my nostalgic Yvelines the cradle of the kingdom of France and lovely towns all over with great architecture and history, St Cyr l’école is one of them.

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

May 29, 2020

Au Lapin Agile, Paris of course!

And I pull an old photo  out of the vault and as not mentioned before in my blog, feels its time to show a post on it for my memories at least, and maybe will becomes yours too. This is an institution in Paris and a must to visit at least once. I will be telling you about the cabaret show of the Au Lapin Agile.

At Montmartre, the life goes on away from Paris. By 1860 the districts are done and artists come out to the hill. Coubert comes with his manners to the Cabaret de la Belle Poule, and later others joined him at the Brasserie des Martyrs, Cezanne or Degas. In pigalle, the Café de la Nouvelle Athénes you can cross with Renoir or Pisarro. The bohemians go to the Bateau Lavoir. It is the time of the birth of cabarets such as the Chat Noir, Lapin Agile where Toulouse-Lautrec and Oscar Wilde are frequent visitors. It is in these cafes that the new literary art is born and continues because Paris is eternal. Au Lapin Agile is located on the Butte Montmartre, at 22 rue des Saules, in the 18éme arrondissement, near the Lamarck – Caulaincourt metro station ; and linking the quartiers Clignancourt and Grandes-Carriéres. And hardy one still open, one of my old favorites too.

The Au Lapin Agile was established in the second half of the 19C, bought by Aristide Bruant in 1913, it was one of the privileged meeting places for bohemian artists at the beginning of the 20C, from Max Jacob to Pablo Picasso via Roland Dorgelès, Francis Carco , Blaise Cendrars or Pierre Mac Orlan; thereafter, in the years 1940-50, it was attended in particular by Jean-Roger Caussimon and François Billetdoux.


A bit of detail history from various sources including my books.

The mount of Montmartre or Butte-Montmartre, resembles until 1914 a village, famous for its clean air, its mills and its low-cost housing, which attract artists, many who come to settle there , and whose number from 1890 becomes considerable. It is in the upper part of Montmartre that the building of what will house the Lapin Agile was built in 1795, which became, around 1860, a ro-ro hostel called Au Rendez-vous des voleurs (meeting of thieves). From 1869, it took the name of Cabaret des Assassins, because engravings representing famous assassins are hung on the wall, from Ravaillac to Troppmann. Between 1879 and 1880, the owner of the time entrusted to the cartoonist André Gill, familiar with the place, the making of a sign.and Gill paints a rabbit dressed in a green frock coat and a red scarf escaping from the pot intended for him; the cabaret then becomes known as Au Lapin à Gill, soon transformed into an Au Lapin Agile.

The cabaret was bought in 1886 by the former cancan dancer Adèle Decerf aka “mother Adèle”; this one, after having got rid of the most doubtful part of its customers, turns it into a café-restaurant-concert called À mon campagne,(to the countryside) which frequenters of the Chat Noir frequent during the day such as Charles Cros, Alphonse Allais, Jehan Rictus, etc. Singer Aristide Bruant is also used to it, and he brings Toulouse-Lautrec and Courteline there as well. At the beginning of the 20C, “Mother Adèle” sold the cabaret to Berthe Sébource, who settled there with her daughter, Marguerite Luc , aka “Margot”, and future wife of Pierre Mac Orlan. They were joined in 1903 by Frédéric Gérard, aka “Father Frédé”, thanks to whom the Lapin Agile becomes an essential place of Montmartre artistic bohemia . The Au Lapin Agile, under the impetus of “Frédé”, quickly becomes for the bohemian Montmartre a true cultural institution.

This carefree period ended on August 1, 1914, with the proclamation of the general mobilization against Germany as the Great War or WWI began. The clientele became scarce at the Lapin Agile, most of the regulars having left for the front, many of whom were not to return. The Lapin Agile will no longer regain its status as a meeting place for avant-garde writers and artists as the center of gravity of creation has moved to Montparnasse, just as it will move to Saint-Germain-des-Prés after the end of WWII.

In 1922, Aristide Bruant sold the cabaret to “Paulo”, the son of Frédéric Gérard to whom he taught singing. The Au Lapin Agile is also proud to have as clients Pierre Brasseur, Georges Simenon, as well as American celebrities passing through Paris, such as Rudolph Valentino, Vivien Leigh, or Charlie Chaplin. The Au Lapin Agile somehow continued its activities during the Nazis occupation of WWII, and again became a meeting place and a springboard for artists after 1945. It was there that in 1950 guitarist Alexandre Lagoya got to know Léo Ferré, and that in 1955 Claude Nougaro made his first appearances on stage, first as a poet, then as a singer. In 1972, Paulo Gérard cedes the management of the cabaret to his stepson Yves Mathieu who is still the owner; and evenings are still organized there, during which singers and humorists perform. An institution and a must to see in Paris.

The official webpage for the Au Lapin AgileAu Lapin Agile in Paris

The Paris tourist office on the Au Lapin Agile in English: Paris tourist office on Au Lapin Agile

And there you, I needed to tell you about it even if briefly, another wonderful monument to see in Paris. Oh yes it is a monument, it is Paris, you want to see all about Paris than come here at least once. Hope you enjoy my take on the Au Lapin Agile in my eternal Paris

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

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May 29, 2020

Poissy and its transports modes!

So here I am back to reality in my belle France, my adopted citizen country since 2000, and as the title of my blog tells you first visited in 1972! Today I like to bring you out of Paris and into the beautiful nostalgic Yvelines dept 78 where I spent my first few years in France. Several posts on the royal city of Poissy but today let me tell you a bit on its transports modes!

Poissy is in the Yvelines department 78 in the Île-de-France region. The city of Poissy is located approximately 30 km from Paris, in the north-east of the Yvelines, 8 km from Saint-Germain-en-Laye, and 23 km from Versailles, prefecture/capital of the department. The neighboring towns of Poissy are Saint-Germain-en-Laye to the east, Chambourcy and Aigremont to the south, Feucherolles to the southwest, Orgeval and Villennes-sur-Seine to the west and Carrières-sous- Poissy to the northwest, town from which it is separated by the Seine river. A beautiful crossroad of my France indeed.

Many bypass this lovely small town on their way to Normandy from Paris on the A13 or the train. However, it is a royal town of France, birth and baptismal of king Louis IX or Saint Louis was at its Notre Dame Collegiale Church. I have written on the history and monuments in various posts, so this one will be on transports.   The tourist office is at 132 rue du Général de Gaulle and its a rounded tower built in 1832 to make payment of the animals sold, and a tax to enter the city, its mark the city limits. Here is the webpage in English: Poissy tourist office

I used to come by here on many business trips and to get my sons off school at the train station in Poissy .There are many roads here and yours truly has partake them all. The D 190, links Le Pecq to Limay and crosses the Seine river by the Poissy bridge and constitutes the historic axis of the city, deviated towards the north following the construction of the new bridge in the 1950s; the D 30 is a local road , D 308, which links it to Maisons-Laffitte; the D 113, nicknamed “route de quatre sous”, which crosses the D30 at a place called the Maladrerie de Poissy, passes south of the city; D 153 (facing the ND Collegiale Church ) connects Poissy to the Orgeval interchange, junction of the A13 (exit/sortie 7) and A14 highways. These two highways cross the city in its southern part. We came front or back the route down pad by getting out into the A13 autoroute de Normandie direction Rouen until exit /sortie 6 Versailles centre that brings you on the N186 is only 23 kms or take a bit longer but more scenic route on the D190 into the old N13 now D113 (route de quatre sous) at St Germain en Laye and onwards to the N186 to Versailles. And you will love the forest.

There are two paid parking zones in Poissy: a short-term zone limited to 2 hours (downtown lanes), a long-term zone limited to 5 hours (peripheral routes). Parking is payable Monday to Saturday from 9h to 12h30 and from 14h to 19h. There are parking areas such as the train station or gare de Poissy with 904 places at 6, rue du Bac. Another at the Hôtel de Ville or city/town hall with 271 places at Place de la République, and a third one at Les Lys parking with 129 places at 23, rue Jean-Claude-Mary. It has two terminals equipped with two charging sockets and accessible at rue du 8 mai 1945, near the city/town hall and at 4 rue Jean-Claude Mary, parking near the train station. There is a further parking we used by the Parc Meissonier  a bit walk into town but free and just great scenery along the Seine river and its peniche boats!!

Another popular spot by me and taken the RER A or train from gare St Lazare many times as we like to go to Poissy when lived in the area in Versailles! However, from Paris is easier by train from the Gare Saint Lazare in Paris direction Mantes or the RER A from several points in Paris. The train station or gare de Poissy is right off the city center so very easy for walkers and no car is needed. The city of Poissy is crossed by two railway lines: the Paris-Le Havre line which runs along the Seine river at the western edge of the town, the station is located on the J line Paris – Mantes-la-Jolie (Poissy / Houilles – Carrières-Sur-Seine / Paris Saint-Lazare). Trains are direct in the morning to Paris Saint-Lazare and in the evening from Paris Saint-Lazare . Also, the Grande Ceinture line, limited to a restricted traffic of goods, which runs along the forest of Saint -Germain-en-Laye in the eastern limit of the city. Passenger service is provided by Gare de Poissy, 14, place Georges-Pompidou ,which is a terminus station for services of the A5 branch of the RER A and a transit station for the other suburban trains of the Transilien line J bound for Les Mureaux and Mantes-la-Jolie as well as TER to Vernon (Eure). To Paris, all these trains end at Gare Saint-Lazare , a very short ride. The ile de France transport site RER/Train is Transilien, the webpage here : Transilien gare de Poissy


There is a taxi stand facing the gare or train station at rue Jean-Claude Mary: more info here in French: The taxis of Poissy

The city of Poissy has a particularly dense bus network as it offers 31 bus lines, serving all neighborhoods and many surrounding municipalities. Gare Nord or North bus station is at 2, rue du Pont Ancien. Gare Sud or South bus station is at 87, avenue Maurice-Berteaux. Bus transport is available to many including Versailles, on bus 24 to St Germain en Laye RER A station and then Bus line 1 to Versailles Château-rive gauche. Or vice versa. The bus no 9 from Poissy train station/bus terminal takes you to Avenue de l’Europe in Versailles near the palace/museum on Transdev network, webpage here on all bus lines at Poissy: Transdev IDF bus lines at Poissy


Some of the future development and even going on as I write slow down due to the wuhan virus are:

Phase 1 connecting Saint-Cyr RER to Saint-Germain RER, declared of public utility in February 2014 and whose work has started. Phase 2 extending Tramway line 13 express from Saint-Germain RER to Achères-Ville RER via Poissy. Declared to be of public utility in December 2018, this phase, which was the subject of consultation and a complementary public inquiry, records the urban layout and its three stops in the city of Saint Louis_Poissy!. The start of works is envisaged in 2021 for commissioning by 2026. The webpage in French for the Tram13 Express is here: Tramway 13 Express

There is ,also, the RER Eole project which will have a connection of quays or quai A to B underground to the bus terminal south or sud. More of it in French here: RER Eole project by Poissy

Served by lines A and J as well as by 28 bus lines distributed in two bus stations, the Poissy train station has a plan for an increase in traffic by by around 30% by 2024, with the extension of line E to the West (Eole) and the arrival of Tram 13 express (urban route), coupled with dynamic urban development on the two banks of the Seine river. The future Gare de Poissy train station will have to increase the attractiveness of the district thanks to the modernization of the services offered ,redefine and secure access and connections, reorganize the operation of the two bus stations. Whatever the preferred scenario, the project will be commissioned at the same time as the Eole RER, by 2024. More on the pole gare project in French here City of Poissy on pole gare project

Lastly, the Yvelines dept 78 tourist office talk about Poissy in French: Yvelines dept 78 tourist office on Poissy

And there you go folks, a wonderful town near Paris and Versailles on a fantastic region of the beautiful France, not to be missed , Poissy that is. Its a Royal Town of France, and it shows all phases of it up to now. See it and enjoy it as we did. Looking forward to be back!

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

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May 28, 2020

Théâtre de la ville de Paris: Espace Cardin!

So this is wonderful in Paris ,even if I myself need to do it more, it has been done. Theaters in Paris, the fact of the areas are all romantic and quaint, and the shows are of historical significance in a historical building and of course ,Paris makes it all worth.

This is an interesting place that I have not been for theater plays but for conferences , and of course passed several times as it is quasi diagonal to the US Consulat/Embassy. Let me tell you a bit more on the Theater of the city of Paris Espace Pierre Cardin.

The Theatre de la ville de Paris- Espace Cardin is at 1, avenue Gabriel 8éme arrondissement and quartier Champs-Elysées, and just at corner of the Place de la Concorde. There is plenty to get here such as the metro Line 1,8,and 12 stop Concorde exit 7 Avenue Gabriel and metro lines 1 and 13 stop Champs-Elysées-Clemenceau. Also, bus lines 24, 42, 52, 72, 73, 84 and 94  stop Place de la Concorde. Of course I have come by car too and for many other things as well my parking is underneath the Place de la Concorde and Indigo 3608 parking. I must say that bus line 73 is wonderful from a tourist point of view.


The Espace Pierre-Cardin, former café des Ambassadeurs, then theater and restaurant of the Ambassadors, is a place composed of a theater, a cinema, a multipurpose room and a gallery and property of the city of Paris.

The construction of the café des Ambassadeurs or Ambassadors’ café was authorized on the site of the current Pierre-Cardin space in 1772 by Father Terray, controller general of finance. This cafe owed its name to the hotels built by the architect Ange-Jacques Gabriel on the edge of the Place de la Concorde, hotels that were supposed to serve as accommodation for foreign ambassadors. One of them ,the USA Embassy at Avenue Gabriel. From 1897 to 1914, reviews/plays were played there. These continued after the Great War or WWI, until the Café des Ambassadeurs was demolished in 1929, and replaced by a theater built in 1931 also called Ambassadeurs and a new restaurant, bearing the same name.

The first show in May 1926 coming directly from London and New York, Blackbirds by Lew Leslie and his troop, Florence Mills plays the main role. It was well done the new ambassadors the most famous night meeting of the world for the rich and the celebrities. Among the biggest French stars, who attend the show we can mention Maurice Chevalier, Sacha Guitry, Yvonne Vallée, the Dolly Sisters, Raquel Meller and even Joséphine Baker. It becomes a model for all future theater-restaurant operations that were to flourish in the 1930s.

At the end of the 1928 season, the owner Sayag renovated the Ambassadors and built a larger building around the existing building, creating two equal parts of the music hall and the restaurant with a common stage. Cole Porter created La Revue des ambassadeurs, May 10, 1928. The Ambassadors ‘Conferences given by personalities from the political, diplomatic or business worlds are organized at the Ambassadors’ theater, notably on the initiative of André David, Jules Cambon, François de Menthon, Pierre-Henri Teitgen, Marie-Claude Vaillant – Coutourier. In 1938, Henri Bernstein took over the Théâtre des Ambassadeurs until his exile in June 1940 for the United States. He leaves the theater in the hands of his secretary Madame Refoulé. From 1940 to 1944, the theater was directed by the actress of Romanian origin Alice Cocéa who was criticized at the Liberation for her attitude under the Occupation.

Official Theater of the city of Paris space Pierre Cardin here: Théâtre de la ville de Paris Espace Cardin

Theater online webpage on reviews of the Theater of the city of Paris space Pierre Cardin in French: Theater on line on Espace Cardin

And there you go folks, something unique and can include in the off the beaten path section for Paris, as so near famous places and embassies it is many times overlook by visitors. However, a magical place, with history and architecture to boot and so near the Place de la Concorde and Avenue des Champs Elyssés it is magical Paris indeed. Hope you enjoy it and do visit one day the Théâtre de la ville de Paris-Espace Cardin! 

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

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