Archive for May 2nd, 2022

May 2, 2022

The Church Sainte Croix of Nantes!

One of my favorite cities of my belle France,out in the west is Nantes. And this wonderful place has history and architecture while remaining off the beaten path even with relation to a Jules Verne. Of course, still in the Loire-Atlantique dept 44 of the Pays de la Loire region. I like to update this older post with new text and same pictures on the Church of Sainte Croix or Holy Cross,

The Church of Sainte Croix was built in the 17C in the classical style and then modified in the 19C. The church is located in the district of Bouffay, of which it is the church since 1138.  On the side of the church there is a passarelle to the Holy Cross passage. The parish register, on the date of February 8, 1828, bears the transcript of Jules Verne’s birth and baptism certificate.


A bit of history I like

The origin of the church is uncertain, but as early as the 11C the Benedictines of Marmoutier (city of Tours) had a priory whose Chapel Saint-Martin was located at the present site of the church’s choir. At the time the chapel was used for the Château du Bouffay which was adjoined it.  The actual construction of the present Church of Sainte Croix begins in the 17C. From 1669 to 1685, the nave is built in the flamboyant ogival style. The bedside was then made up of three altars leaning against a flat wall. The façade, overlooking Place Sainte-Croix, is adorned in the purest classical style, with columns and ancient pediments. During the reign of terror in the French revolution, the Church was used as a prison. In 1839, the Choir was carried out in the flamboyant style, like the nave.

In 1860, the façade of a campanile and the old belfry of the city is surmounted. The belfry initially covered the tower of Bouffay, in a polygonal form, built in 1664 and destroyed in 1848, located at the intersection of the rue de Bouffay and rue de Belle-Image, itself the only vestige of the ancient castle of Bouffay.  Henceforth, the ensemble consists of the clock of the old belfry topped by a lantern that houses the bell, called La Bouffay done in 1663 and weighing 8 096 Kg. The lantern is decorated with an allegorical round of angels ringing the trumpet.


The altar of the right nave is the only surviving altar of the 17C. The Louis XV-style pulpit is made of solid mahogany and a wrought iron ramp. The stalls date back to the 18C. The master altar, in white marble and gilded wood, was consecrated in 1844. The Sainte-Table, in white marble, is dated 1903.  The original organ, dated 1853, was restored and modified several times since, the last intervention dating from 1979.  The windows of the Choir were destroyed during the bombardment of  WWII, and remade in 1947. There is a nice stained glass window of the Tribune, dated 1872, which represents the triumph of the Cross.


The Holy passage of  Sainte Croix events annex

The official Catholic parish of Notre Dame on the Church Sainte Croix

The city of Nantes on its heritage :

There you go folks, another dandy monument in pretty Nantes, now closer to Bretagne but still in the Loire Atlantique dept 44 of the Pays de la Loire in my belle France, And the Sainte Croix Church in Nantes is one small contribution to it. Hope you enjoy the post as I!

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

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May 2, 2022

The Place Maréchal-Foch of Nantes!!

In my road warrior trips even in my region, have done quite a bit of walking! My deal is get there and back with my car and on site do the walking; for me, the best one two combination. You can always parked strategically as close to the things you want to see. This is no different coming to Nantes, and one of its most revered street, the Place Maréchal Foch. Let me tell you a bit about it digging deeply into my vault of older pictures.

The Place Maréchal-Foch is one of Nantes’ best-known squares, an architectural ensemble designed in the 18C. The square in the city center/downtown district,  sits on the edge of the Malakoff-Saint-Donatien district that borders it, Between the Cours Saint-Pierre and Cours Saint-André. It is serves by the streets of L’Évêché, Chauvin, Tournefort, Sully, Maréchal-Joffre, Gambetta and Henri-IV.  Parking Cathédrale is the closest short minutes on foot from the Place Maréchal Foch, You enter the parking underground by Rue Sully, We have done this and from here wall all over Nantes.


The name of Ferdinand Foch, Marshal of France, has been given to this square since 1929. Called Place d’Armes until the First Empire (Napoléon), it became place Louis-XVI under the Restoration (of monarchy 1814). The people of Nantes, especially those of native origin and especially among people of a certain age, still commonly use this name, much more spontaneously than that of Foch.

It hosts in its center the Louis-XVI column, erected in 1790 as simply a column of Liberty, 28 meters high, it is surmounted since the Restoration by a statue of the monarch. Placed on a pedestal surmounted by the statue with Louis XVI as a Roman emperor holding in one hand the baton of command and in the other his will in the form of a scroll, It is one of the rare statues of Louis XVI still present in France in the public space It was set up in 1823, Most depictions of Louis XVI are absent from public space in France. There are only four other statues of the former monarch: in Loroux-Bottereau, Loire-Atlantique 44, at the tourist office; in Plouasne in the Côtes-d’Armor 22, in the gardens of the Château de Caradeuc; in Soreze, in the Tarn 81; and in Nant, in the Aveyron 12 (note however that this latter statue is decapitated and that it would belong to an individual).


Around the square, you can see the Hôtel Montaudouin, the Hôtel d’Aux, built in 1770, where Napoléon I and Josephine stayed in 1808, it became the headquarters of the 11th army corps under the French Third Republic, then that of the Feldkommandantur during WWII; the Hôtel de Charette (or Hôtel de Bruc), erected in 1824, headquarters of the local services of the SD (National Socialist Party Security Service=nazis), which was identified by Nantes residents as those of the Gestapo from 1942 (date of the arrival of the Gestapo in Nantes) in 1944. Near the cathedral stands the Porte Saint-Pierre, (see post) a remnant of the medieval city walls.

The city of Nantes on its heritage and the column Louix XVI

The Nantes tourist office on how to get around and see my post:

There you go folks, a nice dandy square in pretty historical architecturally stunning Nantes! This is a happening square and worth the detour. Hope you enjoy my bit on the place Maréchal Foch or Louis XVI!

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

May 2, 2022

Some news from France, CCCLIV

And its time as time flies to tell you my latest rants about some news from France. An eventful post in my blog that I have enjoyed together with you for the last 12 years now!! And for those non Roman CCCLIV is no 354::) And I thank you. The weather is now more steady as summer wants to take over already in my belle France !! Hope you enjoy the post as I.

We have many wonderful monuments, properties of all sorts, beautiful to say the least in my belle France. Some of these are known as Villas and they are all over. Let me bring you some worthy of a visit in itself in our PACA region.

The villa and the Ephrussi de Rothschild gardens in Saint Jean Cap Ferrat where the town is known for its exceptional villas; the place is also nicknamed “the peninsula of billionaires”. A sentimental favorite as have written a bit in my blog where my dear late wife Martine worked in Paris for the architect firm that renovated and I still have the brochure of its work ! The Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild is a must if you are staying on the Riviera. It is located half an hour from Nice and Monaco. The residence was the fruit of the desires of a powerful woman: Baroness Béatrice de Rothschild, art collector and patron, renowned for her elegance and beauty. In 1905, her father Alphonse left her a great inheritance. Béatrice uses the money to acquire 7 hectares of land in Cap Ferrat , The Baroness furnishes her home with taste. Each piece is dedicated to an era. Béatrice draws from her collection: paintings, porcelain, vases, chests of drawers, sumptuous carpets… She is a modern woman: electricity, telephone and central heating are installed. At the same time, formal gardens are being laid out despite the daunting challenge of growing plants on a rocky slope. Béatrice began to stay at the villa in 1912. She spent all her winters there and organized parties there. But the baroness suffers from tuberculosis. In 1933, she bequeathed her villa and the 5,000 works she owned to the Academy of Fine Arts. She died the following year in Switzerland. The Villa is completed by an exotic garden after WWII, following the donation of cactus by neighbors, the Marnier-Lapostolle. The house is, for its part, renovated and repainted in pink. Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild ,Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, To get to the villa by car, from Nice and Monaco, take the road RD 6098. By bus,
Lignes d’Azur: take line 15 and stop at “Passable – Rothschild”, or take line 100 and stop at “Pont Saint Jean”. Walk 15 minutes to the villa. Webpage :

The villa “tattooed” by Jean Cocteau: Santo Sospir in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, Its name comes from an old marine appellation of Cap Ferrat: “Cap du Saint-Soupir”. In 1950, the artist was invited to Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat by Francine Weisweiller. Bored, he asks the owner of the mansion if he can decorate it. He draws in charcoal and continues with colored powders, playing with matter. The artist likes to vary genres and eras: he depicts Greek heroes and everyday figures like fishermen. He also painted southern foods: fougasse, sea urchin and fish. Little by little, all the walls are covered by these tempera frescoes: it is a real “tattooed” villa that Francine rediscovers. Indeed, Jean Cocteau follows the advice of Matisse: “When we decorate a wall, we decorate the others”. And it’s not over in 1952, the designer takes his pastels to restore cheerfulness to the ceilings of the house. He says, “When I worked at Santo Sospir, I became a wall myself and those walls spoke for me.” The entrance to the villa is decorated with two mosaics evoking Medea and Orpheus, a nod to Cocteau’s film. As for the dining room, it houses the Judith and Holofernes tapestry, designed by the artist. This one appreciates his work: he returns many times to stay in Santo Sospir. He’s not the only one: Francine Weisweiller invites Marlène Dietrich, Picasso, Calder… but also Romy Schneider, Alain Delon and Charles Aznavour. The Villa Santo Sospir is at 14, avenue Jean Cocteau in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, To get to the villa by car from Nice and Monaco, take the road RD 6098. By bus, Lignes d’Azur, take line 15 and stop at “Villa Alexandra”, then walk 26 minutes.Webpage :

The Villa Kérylos proudly raises its silhouette on the tip of Baie des Fourmis, in Beaulieu-sur-Mer. It is the realization of the dream of Théodore Reinach, a multitalented politician passionate about Greek antiquity. The villa is thus emblematic of the noble houses that could be found on the island of Delos, in Greece. Precious materials are used for the construction: Carrara marble, exotic woods, mosaics… Nothing is left to chance. The villa is named “Kérylos”, meaning “sea swallow” in Greek, a bird that portends happiness. In 1966 the descendants died and the villa then becomes the property of the Centre des Monuments Nationaux de France or the Center of National Monuments of France. The Villa Kérylos is located at Impasse Gustave Eiffel in Beaulieu-sur-Mer , To get to the villa by car ,from Nice or Monaco, take the road RD 6098. By bus on Lignes d’Azur, take line 15 to “Villa Kérylos”, or line 100 and stop at “Eglise”. Webpage :

The Villa Eilenroc in Antibes , the “jewel of the Côte d’Azur”, In 1860, under the Second Empire (Napoléon III) , the former governor of the Dutch Indies Hugh-Hope Loudon asked Charles Garnier (opéra garnier de Paris ,etc) to draw up the plans for his new property. In 1867, the construction of the residence was completed. It is neo-classical in style, a wave movement at the time. Loudon honors his wife, Cornélie, by giving his villa the anagram of her name: “Eilenroc”. In 1873, 11 hectares of gardens were laid out in place of the scrubland by James Wyllie, a Scotsman who bought the villa. On March 30, 1927, Louis-Dudley Beaumont acquired the property at auction. He hired a landscape architect, Jacques Greber, to create a vegetable garden and a garden of aromatic plants. As for the villa, it is decorated with 18C furniture. The residence was bequeathed to the city of Antibes in 1982. This donation came with conditions: setting up a foundation, hosting artistic events and opening the park to the public. The building is renovated and equipped with a rich rose garden with more than one hundred varieties. In 2000, olive trees were planted in the gardens in honor of the birth of fifty children in the town of Antibes. In 2011, it was the turn of a “garden of scents” to appear. The Villa Eilenroc is at 460, avenue Mrs Beaumont in Antibes, To get to the villa by car, from Nice: take the A8 and the near buses,that I know of, Webpage :

The Villa E-1027 in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, At the beginning of the 20C, the world of architecture was in turmoil. Many talents emerge, inaugurating the modern era: Gropius, Van Doesburg, Rietveld. The Irishwoman Eileen Gray, admirer of Le Corbusier, does not want to stay on the side of the stage. In 1926, she decided to build a house in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin with the architect Jean Badovici. Since the villa faces the sea, she builds it on stilts, gives it a flat roof, tarpaulin blinds, and the shape of an ocean liner. A buoy adorns the facade of the residence, while a “Transat” armchair welcomes guests on the ground floor. The construction, completed in 1929, is eminently modern: its structure is in reinforced concrete, the spaces are modular and a kitchen is fitted out. Eileen Gray designs the storage furniture and the decorations. She installs benches and a table in the gardens, renovates the terraces of lemon trees. It does not lack humor: inscriptions dot the walls of the property: “Enter slowly”, “No laughing”, “No entry”. Eileen Gray skillfully mixes her initials and those of her companion Jean Badovici to give a name to her home. Thus, the “E” refers to “Eileen”, its diminutive, the 2, second letter of the alphabet, to the “B” of “Badovici” and the 7 to the “G” of “Gray”. The couple works there and receives their relatives. In 1956, Jean Badovici died. The villa was bought by the Conservatoire du littoral in 1999 and renovated in 2007. The period furniture, damaged in the meantime by the successive owners of the villa, was recreated or restored. The Villa E-1027 is located at Avenue Le Corbusier – Sentier Massolin in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, To get to the villa by car from Nice, take the road A8, then the D2564. By bus, Lignes d’Azur, take line 100 Nice-Menton; stop at “Quatre chemins”, then walk 20 minutes. Webpage :

And as for other news, here they are folks!!

And we get the ritual again, Holiday in France , May 1 or international labor day ; time for folks to do their strikes and manifestations in France, For safety, some of the metro stations will be close, These are :Champs-Élysées-Clémenceau, Nation, Oberkampf…In Paris, around 20,000 demonstrators are expected, according to BFMTV. The procession will set off at 14h30 from Place de la République, heading for Place de la Nation. From 10h closures are: Champs-Élysées-Clémenceau (M1 and M13). From noon: Nation (M1, M2, M6, RER A); Temple (M3); Oberkampf (M5, M9); Saint-Ambroise (M9); Voltaire (M9); Charonne (M9); Rue des Boulets (M9); Richard Lenoir (M5); Breguet-Sabin (M5); Daughters of Calvary (M8); Parmentier (M3); and Rue Saint Maur (M3). M is for Metro, number is the line closing,

Just in time to announce, tourism is back to France and Paris of course is tops, Louvre, Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe… in Paris, museums and monuments are restocking with tourists, Spring is off to a good start for Paris’s emblematic cultural venues, which are back to their 2019 attendance figures, before the health crisis. This constant brouhaha in certain rooms of the Louvre. This trampling on the stairs that goes up to the “Victoire de Samothrace”, these bottlenecks as soon as we approach the star works. We almost jostle in front of the mummies on the parade of Egyptian rooms. Oh yes crowds are back too, heck we all want to see Paris ,sometimes I think at the same time lol !! Give it time and patience if in Paris.

And so much for the ecologists call, the mayor of Paris keeps chopping down trees !! No hundred-year-old tree will be felled. This Saturday afternoon, Emmanuel Grégoire, first deputy (PS) of the socialist mayor Anne Hidalgo, sought to extinguish the fire lit by opponents of the redevelopment project for the Eiffel Tower neighborhood, succeeded in lowering the figure from 42 to 22 trees !! Thanks to the effort of the association SOS Paris, In place of these trees, the “OnE” project, which aims to vegetate and pedestrianize the world famous perspective from the Trocadero to the Iron Lady, plans luggage storage for visitors and premises for employees, semi-underground buildings. But also 227 new trees planted The project as a whole should allow the creation of 1.6 ha of green spaces, Will see,,,

More restrictions in Paris in the name of ecolos, Launched six months ago, the consultation continues between the mayor of the 17éme arrondissement, and the residents to create a real neighborhood square in front of the borough city hall, The Place Richard-Baret will not be returned to car traffic. Geoffroy Boulard, the borough mayor (LR), confirmed this Thursday evening during a meeting held in this very busy square, Ok less folks in Paris already thousands leaving the city only for investors on limo lol !!

And what is needed, finally a victory, CDG Express authorized by the courts !! Opponents of this direct link between Paris and Roissy castigated for being “the train of the rich”, with a journey at 24 euros, the Charles-de-Gaulle Express had been stopped by the Administrative Court of Paris. The Administrative Court of Appeal has just overturned the judgment at first instance. The construction will be able to continue. CDGX, the Charles-de-Gaulle Express, which should connect in 2027, the Gare de l’Est in Paris to Roissy CDG airport. Better late than never and will give more choices to visitors and locals alike. Official webpage:

This time it really is the home stretch! After a decade of work , marred by a multitude of technical problems which led to a delay of four and a half years ,the extension of metro line 12 from its current terminus, Front-Populaire, to the station Mairie-d’Aubervilliers, two km further on, is finally ready. The two new stations are fitted out and equipped. And the safety and signaling systems, already tested on the new section of the line, are all operational. There is only one step left to complete: “physically” connect the old network and its extension. This operation was completed this past Wednesday, 27 April ,indicates the RATP. Webpage:

The investigating commissioner gave a favorable opinion on the construction of a new overflow downstream of the étangs de Corot, (Yvelines 78) ponds, managed by the Center for National Monuments and State property. This project to secure the dams, decried by heritage defenders, involves the expropriation of the land company Gecina. Lots of controversy as this is where the painter Corot spend most of his life and the place is historically renown and protected, Another ecolo disaster by the authorities, More from the town of Ville d’Avray:

The Stravinsky fountain under construction, the restorers between relief and concern. It adjoins the Pompidou Center (4éme), and has just undergone asbestos removal. The fountain is now undergoing a complete renovation. On the program in particular, waterproofing of the basin and restoration of the sculptures. The Stravinsky Fountain, Place Igor-Stravinsky in Paris its restoration work has finally begun. Finally, it was beginning to be a bit run down! The Paris tourist office on the fountain:

The excavations have led to exceptional discoveries at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, The excavations are over. A huge scaffolding of 600 tons and 100 meters high will be able to be erected at Notre-Dame, to rebuild the spire, three years after the fire of April 15, 2019. The friends of Notre Dame on its work:

This part of the Domaine de Maffliers (Val-d’Oise 95) reopened last March 10 2022, after two years of work. The building had suffered a spectacular fire when it had just been completely renovated. The work was almost finished ,and ready to open the Château de Maffliers renovated around a chic and cozy hotel concept, combining traditions, leisure and the pleasures of the table, A nice Accor Novotel webpage :

The Écouen castle museum organizes visits for people with disabilities, The Renaissance Museum notes the more regular arrival of specialized institutions and wishes to develop its offer in the field of disability in the coming months. Webpage :

The Foreign Legion opens its doors to celebrate its 60th anniversary at Fort de Nogent. It was in December 1962 that the Foreign Legion began to use Fort de Nogent, in Val-de-Marne (94). Every week, around 150 candidates come to this military site built in 1840 to take the selection tests. This weekend, the legionnaires welcome you to commemorate the Battle of Camerone and the anniversary of their presence at the fort. To enter Fort de Nogent, in the town of Fontenay-sous-Bois is to take a leap back more than 180 years. The Val de Marne dept 94 tourist office on Fort de Nogent :

Saint-Germain-en-Laye (Yvelines 78) and Great Britain say “Yes” ! An agreement was signed this past Thursday April 28 2022 ,between the city and the “Team GB”, which will prepare and then train on the municipal facilities at the occasion of the great Olympic meeting of Paris 2024. The British flag now flies on the pediment of the city/town hall of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, a sign of the brand new union between the city and the Olympic team of Britain. Both signed a partnership agreement for the next Paris 2024 Olympic games. Saint-Germain will thus be the base camp of the British delegation for the duration of the competition, but also of the preparation. Georges-Lefèvre stadium at Camp des Loges. The 12-hectare complex, which the British representatives visited again on Thursday, will be the real headquarters. It has two field hockey pitches, five football pitches, one rugby pitch, tennis courts but also, soon, a performance and bodybuilding center and a brand new approved athletics track. Part of PSG’s professional football facilities could also be made available to them. The British team will finally be able to use the various gymnasiums of the town for its indoor disciplines, but also the swimming pool (Le Dôme) for synchronized swimming and… leisure. As such, the city’s three golf courses were also involved. They can enjoy life here without the hustle and bustle of Paris while being fifteen minutes away by RER A ! The city of SGL on visits :

And finished the photos of the motorcycles with the castle in the background. As of this Sunday, parking and stopping of two-wheelers in front of the Domaine de Chantilly estate (Oise 60) is prohibited. For this first weekend, awareness actions, in order to redirect to the free location provided for this purpose, will be put in place. But from the next, bikers who do not comply with the ban may be fined. Many motorcyclists have become accustomed to parking on the forecourt of the castle. They will now have to go to a car park which will be reserved for them a little further, Of course good action the front grille gate is not for parking for anything ! The Castle of Chantilly webpage :

Exhibition at the Château de Fontainebleau: the meaning of celebration in the time of the Valois ! During the Renaissance, entertainment was no joke. The party is in the 16C a total work of art, presents an exhibition dedicated to “the art of the party at the court of the Valois” A hundred documents and works (manuscripts, books, engravings, paintings, tapestries, works of art, parade weapons) have been brought together which illustrate the extraordinary inventiveness and debauchery of means deployed under the reigns of François I, Henri II , Catherine de Médicis , and Henry III for these festive events, The castle of Fontainebleau on the event :

This is the first time that an ephemeral thrift store from the TissEco association has set up shop in a suburban shopping center in Île-de-France region. Between the Jun’s, Jennyfer and Undiz shops, the “Fripe Avenue” window intrigues customers with bags full of purchases in the Aéroville shopping center in Roissy-en-France (Val-d’Oise 95). A thrift store in a suburban center is rather unexpected, admits Jérôme, the young manager of the brand, with a smile. In general, thrift stores are more in Paris. Great mall I visited and ate when working at CDG airport last November 2019, Aeroville webpage :

We missed the Pavillon Puebla pavilion. The best spot in the Buttes Chaumont finally reopened last Thursday April 21, 2022. After closing for renovations, the guinguette is getting a new life and a little makeover to welcome us as it should. With its two charming terraces, its two bars, its menu and its invigorating cocktails, this large house transformed into a place of relaxation and celebration remains an iconic haven of peace. In the heart of the Buttes Chaumont, the Puebla Pavilion is accessible via a pretty stone staircase. Pavillon Puebla, Avenue Darcel, 19éme of Paris, open from Wednesday to Sunday, webpage :

This Top Chef show is a launcher ! Thibaut from Top Chef opened his restaurant at the Musée Carnavalet museum and Thibaut Spiwack, already holder of a green star, will delight our taste buds all summer long in the museum’s sublime garden. The opportunity to enjoy its fresh and generous recipes in the sublime setting offered by the Jardins d’Olympe. A delicious culinary experience between nature, arts and history. On the menu of this ephemeral table, therefore, plates to share made up of products mainly from Île-de-France region, Les Jardins d’Olympe, Musée Carnavalet, 16, rue des Francs-Bourgeois 4éme, From May 6, 2022 for having dinner, Restaurant webpage :

There you go folks, another dandy round of news of my belle France , of course, chosen by me; there are many others. We are marching on to Summer and eating out in our veranda porch every day now , grand! Hope you enjoy the post as I

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

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