Archive for March 21st, 2023

March 21, 2023

Some news from France , CCCLXXXIV

This is my latest from my belle France ; as we are into Spring, but with rainy days However, is that time again 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 , And for those non Roman CCCLXXXIV is 384 ! ,with another dandy round of news of my belle France , of course, chosen by me; there are many others. We have already enjoy our veranda as nicer weather has arrive ! Hope you enjoy the post as I.

The National Assembly of France (house of reps) rejected, by nine votes, the motion of censure tabled following the triggering of article 49.3 by the government. This week is likely to be eventful, with a series of actions and rallies before a big Thursday March 23rd of mobilization at the call of the unions. The pension reform is adopted , However, after this tight vote, the calls to resign are multiplying for Borne. The Prime Minister must leave, believes Le Pen (RN) in particular. The Nupes (left) and the RN (right) have announced that they will seize the Constitutional Council. In vain as the 49.3 is constitutional and difficult to vote against it, However, this is a dictatorial article without the vote of the people nor the congress !

Neither worse nor better. The Parisian trash cans are still overflowing with over 7K tons of garbage on the streets. According to the City of Paris, the situation has not changed since the days before. « If Macron withdraws his reform, in four to five days, we empty the city of all its garbage » says a garbage collector, The situation is critical as even private firms hire to do the work has not done it as folks are on the streets protesting the above mentioned 49,3 that allow the President to passed laws without the before approval of Congress,

The rue Saint-Petersburg is a one-way street but remains “a bus highway”. The problem of bus traffic jams in this street crossed by 5 lines remains unresolved. The mayor has put this one-way axis in the north-south direction from April 2023, Yes huge trafic jams by taken away roads for cars and Paris still does not learn, folks are leaving,,,and not just for high prices.

The A86 road that goes around Paris on the south will be closed for the installation of a footbridge, The installation of this 70 meters long footbridge, which will allow pedestrians to reach the Louvresses sector from the city center, begins yesterday Monday March 20 2023. This will lead to the closure of the road four evenings in a row. At least Thursday evening March 23rd between the Villeneuve-la-Garenne/RD 7 exit and the junction to the A15. In steel, the structure is surprising with its tubular shapes, its 6 meters wide, its more than 4 meters high, its arches, its circular diagonals… Good, but will be jams I took the A15 and A86 several times.

Until June 15, the menu at Bleu Coupole 9éme arrondissement is designed by Joey Starr, now known for his militant passion for cooking, has teamed up with the executive chef of Printemps, Clément Blondeau, to put to music his favorite recipes from his Bistronomik guide, published at the end of 2022, Webpage :

The next Asterix is called “White Iris” and immerses the Gauls in full positive thought, In bookstores on October 26, 2023, the 40th album of Gallic adventures, scripted for the first time by Fabcaro, bears a name of flower, webpage :

After the drought of winter, Monet’s gardens are preparing to reopen their doors, Gray sky over Giverny (Eure 27). And yet, Jean-Marie Avisard The head gardener of Claude Monet’s gardens had never seen such a dry winter since his recruitment as an intern more than thirty-five years ago! “This is the first time that we have had to water our flowers during the winter. Webpage :

A great expo by Jean-Gabriel Barthélémy which explores in photos the three emblematic places that are Notre-Dame Cathedral, the Palace of Versailles and the city of La Courneuve. Light and architecture are at the heart of his work, presented in 80 giant shots, exhibited on the roof of the Grande Archeuntil June 30. The 35th floor of the Grande Arche in La Défense (Hauts-de-Seine 92) . In the vast room with its mahogany parquet floor, two huge photographs of Notre-Dame Cathedral stand proudly at the entrance, bearing witness to the grandeur of the past and the tragedy of the present. Go see it if you can, Webpage

A week before its national release, the first episode of the film “The Three Musketeers” by Martin Bourboulon, partly shot in the episcopal city and in the cathedral of Meaux, will be screened during two sessions at the Luxembourg Theater. Later will be released on Wednesday April 5 2023 in French cinemas. Two previews will be organized in the presence of the director at the Luxembourg Theater in Meaux, a week before, i.e. Wednesday, March 29 spectators will see on screen Vincent Cassel, Romain Duris, Eva Green, Pio Marmaï, Louis Garrel, Lyna Khoudri, Éric Ruf from the Comédie Française, and many other talented actors in the credits. A unique visual identity that we discover on the trailer, in which some of the images shot in Meaux appear. All this bodes well for a film with polished images. We will see it of course ! Webpage on the shots of Meaux !

And the trailer on youtube video with scenes of Meaux !!

Ryanair reaffirms its presence in the Oise (60) , the Irish low-cost airline, has decided to densify its activity at Paris-Beauvais airport. The main announcement is for the base it opened in December 2020, which will accommodate a third aircraft. “These are all Boeing 737 Gamechangers,” Ryanair said in a statement. These quieter and more environmentally friendly aircraft (-16% fuel and -40% noise emissions) will operate a total of 63 routes, including four new ones to Belfast (United Kingdom), Lanzarote (Spain), Cluj and Iasi (Romania). Good for the travelers but not for me tried and gone, and the locals claim too much noise lol !!!Webpage:

Léon and Claude Monet reunited at the Musée du Luxembourg Paris ;a beautiful exhibition looks back on the relationship between the famous painter and his older brother, a great collector of paint and manufacturer of synthetic pigments , After a youth of which we know next to nothing, he was a merchant in Rouen, then, from 1869, sales representative for the Basel company Geigy et Cie, specializing in chemical dyes. In 1872, he founded with industrialists from the Rouen region the Industrial Company of Rouen (SIR), In 1892, Geigy et Cie established a factory in Maromme, in the suburbs of Rouen, to circumvent customs duties between France and Switzerland, and Léon ruled it until the end of his life. That Monet’s brother was a master of artificial colors is intriguing. A hypothesis immediately comes to mind: would he have allowed his brother to have access to synthetic pigments produced by his chemists, whose luster is more intense than that of natural pigments, of mineral or vegetable origin? It is impossible to say, if only because it is extremely difficult to know with certainty whether such a color was produced by Geigy et Cie or by another company in the sector. Indeed, for now go see the exhibition, Webpage :

The Centre Pompidou has just signed a cultural engineering contract with the Al-Ula site, in northwestern Saudi Arabia. In addition, Beaubourg, which continues to expand abroad, should open a branch in Seoul in 2025. But the ambitions of the Center Pompidou abroad also target Asia. To be continued,,,,Stay tune, Webpage :

The fine delicatessens treat us to good products. The opportunity to find taste pearls that cannot be found anywhere else. Here are my favorite delicatessens in Paris.

Causses is a place where it is good to linger to unwind, choose good products, meet your neighbors and enjoy yourself. Find them at Causses Épicerie fine 55, rue Notre-Dame-de-Lorette 9éme Open every day from 10h to 21h (Sundays to 13h) ,and Causses Épicerie fine 222, rue Saint-Martin 3éme Open Monday to Saturday from 10h to 21h webpage :

La Esquinita lives up to its name: it’s the spot around the corner that delights the whole neighborhood, with the added bonus of a taste trip to all regions of Mexico. La Esquinita Épicerie fine 36, rue de la Lune 2éme Open Monday to Saturday from 11h to 19h Webpage :

Huguette et Henri,it is the story of a Breton, Val, and a fervent South-West, Fab, great epicurean friends. Together, they have created a place where good products from their regions converge. When you enter, you have the impression of entering a spatio-temporal fault. Vintage decor, 60s music etc Huguette et Henri Épicerie fine 40, rue Sedaine 11éme Open Monday to Saturday from 10h30 to 20h,Sundays from 11h to 19h webpage :

Head for the Iberian Peninsula with this 100% Spanish delicatessen. It smells good of the sun, the sea air and the olive oil, no doubt, we are at La Vendimia d’Espagne. The ideal spot to find the must of small pleasures in cans or jars, La Vendimia d’Espagne Épicerie fine 2, rue Hégésippe-Moreau 18éme Open Tuesday to Saturday from 10h to 14h, and from 16h to 20h , webpage :

And let me tell you about some wonderful spots we have enjoyed over the years and plenty of articles in my blog. Here I go with Toulouse, La Baule (as I call it); and Guérande. Hope you enjoy them as I

How about listen to Nougaro, but not too much. Toulouse has changed a lot since the famous song dedicated to “his” city. Place du Capitole is still there, it remains a lung of the city, which has become pedestrian like the whole center. The adjacent areas, place Wilson, place Saint-Georges, rue d’Alsace-Lorraine, place Saint-Sernin, place Saint-Etienne, the quays of the Garonne, in other words the cardinal points of the heart of Toulouse are the kingdom of walkers, cyclists. Cars are barely tolerated there. The metro leads there from the extremes. The tram too. You will borrow them but moderately. Toulouse is best discovered and revealed on foot !! Its streets strewn with mansions erected in brick are sometimes reminiscent of Venice. On the outskirts, to the north with the Airbus factory, to the south with the Cité de l’Espace, Toulouse takes on its technological, modern, unique dimension. And Sud-Ouest obliges, you’re never far from a good bar or a table to discover!, The train hypothesis should be seriously considered since rue Bayard was renovated. Adjoining the Matabiau train station, (used it nice good) it allows you to reach the center (place Wilson, place Victor Hugo) in about fifteen minutes walk and if your suitcase does not have wheels or you do not want to walk, the metro leads to the same place. in five minutes, And something unique to see there now me think, the Momies, corps préser­vés, corps éternels on contemporary conservation techniques and raises ethical and deontological questions related to the conservation of human remains. A way of questioning humanity about its relationship to time, the search for eternity and death. Until July 2, 2023 . Muséum de Toulouse , 35 Allée Jules Guesde, Open Tuesday to Sunday from 10h to 18h. Webpage :

Take a ride south of me and historical Bretagne and look up in the heart of the Côte d’Amour, along a 9 km of sandy beach, the southern Breton, dares the most daring architectural pirouettes, without eroding, quite the contrary, the attachment of its visitors. Born Escoublac in the 9C, engulfed twice under the dunes, no doubt to counter fate, the village moved a few meters and in the 15C took the name of “Bôle”, marshy shore in patois, that is to say its attractions. In 1896, a new change of identity, when the first summer visitors arrived by train, Bôle became La Baule before, in 1962, reconnecting with its origins under the double surname La Baule-Escoublac. Today La Baule offers two faces, that of the Remblai, a promenade along the sea, colonized by rows of buildings, built during the last fifty years, Le Panorama, the Tour Saint Clair, the Waves of Pierre Doucet, evoking a succession of breaking waves, and that of the neighborhoods with incredible villas of all styles and from all periods of the Bois d’Amour. A big gap between the old and the modern, reserving some very nice surprises for the curious. On foot, by bike or on horseback, these three options add up. Note that galloping near the sea, at the limit between the Atlantic and the sand, and not in the water, is authorized at any time outside the summer season. In summer, the beach is only accessible to riders early in the morning before 9h and after 20h. You can rent a horse or take part in a ride organized by the Manège des Platanes (25, avenue Antoine Louis) To pedal, you borrow an electric two-wheeler (or not) made available by the city, or you rent it from Chaillou (213, avenue du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny,) the tread, from Pornichet to Pouliguen, its 9 km of beach bordering the Atlantic Ocean. do take in the whole bay at a glance, you start from plage des Libraires beach to the east, at sunrise, then cross the grand plage of La Baule, plage Benoit beach adored by fishermen, where you can swim in all security. Arrived at Pouliguen we reach the quays of the port stuck in the heart of the city. You get lost in its streets lined with low houses from the 18-19C. We walk through its halls before walking to the lighthouse, without forgetting to admire the stalls overflowing with regional products (closed on Mondays).

Leave La Baule towards Guérande by bike or as I by car,,,,. Another possible option is to take bus line 1 , near the SNCF train station. Only 7 km separate the beach from the medieval city, which can be reached on foot via the Porte Saint-Michel. Surrounded by massive ramparts in the 14C, during the war of succession in Brittany, opposing two relatives of Duke Jean III, The city retains its medieval character, but beware, it is a small Mont-Saint-Michel , very touristy on weekends and afternoons. The best is therefore to disembark there early in the morning (say 9h30) to circulate quietly on the ramparts. Half-timbered, granite and brick houses follow one another along the narrow cobbled streets. Sublime !!!

And now something unique usually do not put real estate stuff as not to do publicity but this one is unique me think, For those looking to live in Paris,(not me) how about an apartment on the banks of the Seine river with a view of the rooftops and monuments of Paris? This apt is located in the heart of Paris, on the Ile de la Cité, a stone’s throw from Place Dauphine and the former apartment of Simone Signoret and Yves Montand, with a breathtaking view of the Seine. The building for sale is located on quai des Orfèvres and has absolutely breathtaking views of the rooftops and the most beautiful monuments of Paris. From the Panthéon to the Arc de Triomphe via the Saint-Jacques tower, the most beautiful treasures of the city are visible from the terrace at the top. The 243 m2 building has a beautiful entrance, an office, but also a garage on the ground floor. An independent studio with living room, kitchen, bedroom and bathroom is then on the mezzanine. On the 1st, 2nd and 3rd floors are 3 independent apartments in T2, with living room, bedroom, separate kitchen and bathroom. Finally, the 4th and 5th floors are occupied by a completely renovated duplex with living room and American kitchen, 2 bedrooms, but also a dressing room and a bathroom. On the top floor, the terrace overlooks Paris and its rooftops and offers a view of the typical Parisian buildings on the quay opposite. It will therefore be necessary to pay the modest sum of 9,990,000€ for the whole thing, Ok go for it lol! Webpage:

There you go folks, another round of my some news from France coming to you freely by the road warrior travel guy . Hope you enjoy this post and do take care ,enjoy we are now in Spring, great,,, And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all !!!

March 21, 2023

My most private Versailles !!!

 I like to again tell you about Versailles, of course, never tired of telling you, for many reasons, It brings lots of family memories to me , this time will take you to my dear Versailles, very close to me, ! Have written so much on it in my blog, but decided to bring you closer to my neighborhood and my family, Hope you enjoy the post on my most private Versailles !!! Hope you enjoy the post as I.

You know the palace/museum so will skip telling you about, plenty on it in my blog, see posts, The city of Versailles once contacted a survey company do not recall the name, and found that 98% of the visitors to Versailles only come to the palace/museum; and the rest of Versailles?  You are missing the real history of the kingdom of France, part of what you come to see today anyway, There is plenty to see in the city on its own, nothing to do with things to see from Paris. This is my royal town, and my City for over 9 glorious years, Gorgeous Versailles always was and is and will be me think!

We first stop by very early ,the gorgeous wonderful lively Notre Dame market (see post) at the square crossing of rue de la Paroisse and rue du Maréchal Foch just a few hundreds meters from home, It was memorable for all of us ,and became regular customers ! The Marché de Notre Dame and Halles Notre Dame, the difference is the Marché is open air, fruits, veggies, etc alternating with a clothing market while the Halles are covered market dating from the domaine de Clagny c1665.,  As this is my old neighborhood!!! Notre Dame!!! We, then were able to easily walk to marvelous business of always, very friendly with lots of history tells for us.

Versailles marche Notre Dame to rue du mal foch 2010

These businesses we patronise while living there and then visiting later on, such as the Gibert & Joseph book store in rue de la Paroisse as well as my Nicolas wine store, the old favorite resto Le Boeuf à la Mode, and the old Cyrano cinema as well as some shops of the Rue de la Paroisse and Rue des Reservoirs.  The Rue du Maréchal Foch was one of my most frequented streets while living in Versailles, not far from home , So we patronised several businesses here as well as taken the Gare Rive-Droite train station to Gare Saint Lazare in Paris We went of course to the post office or La Poste at 47B Rue Du Marechal Foch. Our insurance needs (still do) from MMA ,18 Rue du Maréchal Foch, The eyeglasses place (still do) Optic 2000, 47, Rue du Maréchal Foch, opposite the train station Rive Droite, Our notaries for housing needs were 60 Foch Notaries, 60 rue du Maréchal Foch (they handle international needs as well) and the hangout for quick cheap meals and memories of older homes the Subway  at 35 Rue Du Marechal Foch, For wines ,the chain Nicolas, my favorite is at  50 rue de la Paroisse  For cheeses go to Fromagerie Le Gall ,in the marché Notre Dame building named Carré à la Marée.

Versailles rue du marechal Foch to subway jul11

The quartier or neighborhood of Notre-Dame  on the north axe of the palace and avenue de Paris with the mythical wonderful Notre Dame Church , the Royal one, as the baptisms and births of the prince of Versailles were done there, including that of  Philippe or Felipe , grandson of Louis XIV and himself king of Spain under Felipe V Bourbon dynasty that still rule in Spain today as Felipe VI, the parish Church of the Palace ; the first district to be built under king Louis XIV ; location also for  the théâtre Montansier  opened in 1777, right by rue des reservoirs the old aqueduct folly of Louis XIV; more on this theater that Marie-Antoinette love so much as well as the Musée Lambinet. The Hôtel du bailliage or bailif today antique shops galore , and the best shopping streets of  Versailles  such as the rue de la Paroisse,  rue Hoche (old rue Dauphine) and the rue du Maréchal-Foch, in addition to market heaven  place du Marché-Notre-Dame, surrounded by its four halles or covered markets.  To the north of the district you have the boulevard du Roi ,and the boulevard de la Reine, and the tranquil rue de l’Ermitage, along the sides of the palace.

The rue Hoche and the Place Hoche with a nice straight view to the castle or to the Notre Dame Church is marvelous as well as the great shopping street of rue de la Paroisse that passes by the Church.  Our home we just took a peek right around the Church into rue Sainte Geneviéve into the square behind the Church and into Rue Saint Lazare…! it’s magnificent Palace/museum was walking distance, wonderful memories of playing around the gardens even beyond the Grand Canal with my boys and having a lunch snack at Angelina in the Petit Trianon, after crossing the property for free by the Porte Saint Antoine memories that will never go away.



For chocolates try the real thing from a local chocolatier, Yves Thuriés Chocolatier, 37 rue de la Paroisse, near church collegiale de Notre Dame , I am giving away my poissonnerie or fish market L’Espadon, Halles Notre Dame, Carré à la Marée,  Boulangerie (Maison) Guinon at 60 rue de la Paroisse , doing it since 1802 and still the best, go for it when in town, Monoprix, 5 ave Georges Clémenceau (also a Monop by 27 Rue Carnot). Franprix, 5 rue Rameau near our Notre Dame Church For photos and we always need those we headed for Photo Station,  50 rue de la Paroisse. For clothing we shop sometimes at Damart as was my dear late wife Martine favorite at 43-45 rue de la Paroisse. I shop at Burton; 11 rue Georges Clemenceau.Mens clothing!  Haircuts at Jean Louis David when the family wanted as I did my own. 15 rue du maréchal Foch. Could not verify if still there but we did had at the Parly II shopping center in Le Chesnay-Rocquencourt. Pharmacies are many but my is at Pharmacie de la Place de Hoche, 6 Pl de Hoche. My BNP Paribas (still is) at 1 rue du Marechal Foch , If you have problems with your laptop or computer while there like we did the moment we landed go to the pros at  VART electronique will definitively help you. They are at 42 ave de Saint Cloud.

I took my parents to get and then renew their Titre de Séjour visiteur resident card as they would never learn French lol !! It was at the  Préfecture of Yvelines by the corner of Avenue de Paris, and Avenue de l’Europe. The RER C line links several stations in central Paris with the Versailles Rive Gauche-Château station, five minutes from the palace on foot. Trains also run from Paris Montparnasse to Versailles Chantiers and from Paris Saint Lazare to Versailles Rive-Droite (closest to me),each a ten-minute walk from the palace The historical road N10 is known here as the kings route as this is the traject king Louis XIV did to go from the palace of Versailles to the Fortress of the Louvre in Paris, today still can done starting at the palace up avenue de paris is the N10 by Boulogne-Billancourt it is the D910 same road along avenue de Versailles into Paris and the Louvre at rue de Rivoli.

Versailles gare rive droite front 2010

The city of Versailles on its history

The Versailles tourist office on the quartier Notre Dame neighborhood

There you go folks, a dandy small stories of my dear Versailles, as said, a lot more than the palace to be seen and enjoy. A nice town good for the whole family, heck it was great for my family with memories to last a lifetime. Do dare go outside the palace/museum you will be glad you did, This is my most private Versailles and again, hope you enjoy this post as I.

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

March 21, 2023

My outer Paris for business and pleasure !

As you might know Paris is a small city, and only about 2,14M (2022 INSEE) , with the greater Paris region of 11, 2 (est 2023 INSEE) folks; the reason it looks so big is that normally they include all the metropolitan area that grows around it. The superficie of Paris is about 105 square km or about 41 square miles. However, outside the boulevard périphérique or beltway road of Paris there is another world and it is great too. Let me tell you in my black and white series, no pictures, Hope you enjoy the post as I.

I have written several posts on the departments ,and the Île de France region in my blog so will only concentrate on the two most visited as also worked in them, The first one is the Hauts-de-Seine dept 92 full of beautiful towns and chic neighborhoods. I have been lucky to have been able to see the outer Paris. Once worked in Suresnes a wonderful town, and have my World HQ company in La Défense on a new tower Carpe Diem where I made my regular runs all year around. So let me tell you a bit about these two 92émes cities, Suresnesand La Défense (not a city per se as it is an agglomeration of several cities).

Let me tell you that Suresnes lies sitting on the left bank of the Seine river and part of the overall Metropole of Grand Paris and the territory west of La Défense. It is surrounded by Puteaux and Nanterre on the north, Saint Cloud on the south, Rueil Malmaison on the west and Paris on the east.

The transportation here is dense but fluid and never a traffic jam for me at least, The current bridge dates from 1950 and has 30 meters long; there are levies first ones appeared in 1864-1869, and others followed in 1880 and 1885 to improve river traffic between Paris and Rouen in Normandy. Next to the levies ,there was the basin of Saint Cloud-Suresnes on the limits of two bridges by same name and was used to test hydroplanes before today gives way to the practice of nautical sports such as motonautic, ski nautique and wakeboard.

There is a good train station here on Gare de Suresnes-Mont Valérien(which I have used ! )on the line L of the Transilien coming out of Paris Saint Lazare train station ,very familiar to me. There is also a line 2 of the tramway that I ,also, got to test on the station Suresnes-Longchamp , and Belvédère both very crowded nowdays; there are ,also several bus lines passing by here such as the no 93, 141, 144, 157, 160, 175, 241, 244, 360, 544, and 563 of RATP and the night line N53 of Noctilien. Driving from Porte Maillot take the N185 road (allée de longchamp) thru the Bois de Boulogne and cross the Seine river at the D1/D785 pont de Suresnes into blvd Henri Sellier. When I came from Versailles by car, I took several options depending on the traffic news. One to avoid highway trafic was to take the D185 (Ave des Etats Unis) continue on same road now D985 passing by Ville d’Avray ,then continue under the A13 (autoroute de Normandie) right into Suresnes on the Blvd Henri Sellier ,,easy does it,

A bit of the condense history of Suresnes.

The name of the town comes from the Latin Surisnce.  By 918 Charles the  Simple gave the domain to count of Paris, Robert I and the abbot of Saint Germain des Prés. By 1593, king Henri IV of France had his conferences here in front of the Catholic and Royal army and the League. In 1844, the ruins of the abbey of the congregation of priest of the calvary were been rebuilt to have the Fort of Mont Valerien (today still a military compound)  and making it as well a place of religious place. In 1914, the WWI starts and Suresnes becomes one of the places to produce ammonition and rockets. During WWII, the fort of Mont Valerien was occupied by the nazis and was the theater of many executions ,more than 1000. From 1941 to 1944, the Catholic priest Franz Stock accompany the prisioners to their last wish and on 1942 the writer and resistant fighter Jacques Decour (Daniel Decourdemanche) died for France on the firing wall executed by the nazis The Mémorial de la France Combattant du Mont Valerien is today  a place of pilgrimage; each year on June 18  the President of France comes here for the commemoration. In 1974 it was held here the 26th Congress of the Spanish workers socialists party (PSOE) then in exile from dictator General Franco in Spain. See other posts on memorials and City,

Some of the things to see in Suresnes are:

The Notre Dame de la Paix Chuch, Immaculate Heart of Mary Church, Notre Dame  de la Salette Chapel, Saint Leufroy Chapel, Saint Louis Chapel, and Fort du Mont Valerien Chapel. The American cemetery of Suresnes; You ,also see the Terrace of Fécheray with a view of Paris and La Défense, best view of Paris from here in my opinion.  There is a new Museum of Urban and social history of Suresnes in the old train station of Suresnes-Longchamp   Showing the evolution of the city from the 1920-1930. On the first floor, you have the story on the person of Henri Sellier, mayor of Suresnes from 1919 to 1941 showing his devotion to the city and the urban projects such as the cité jardins etc. Not to mention,and along an anecdote to come here are the wines of Suresnesand its festival of the grape on each October as well as the Confrérie du vin or wine brotherhood. The vineyards here were cultivated on the lands of Couvaloux,  Bons Raisins, and Pas Saint Maurice. You can buy the wines at the tourist office always.

Now , let me tell you a bit more on the La Défense, As you might read, true, it is a business district located in the metropole of the Grand Paris, just outside Paris , the first in Europe by its inventory of offices buildings. It covers the territory of the cities of Puteaux, Courbevoie, Nanterre, and La Garenne-Colombes . It is on the historical axis that starts at the Louvre palace and continues to the avenue des Champs-Elysées,  Arc de Triomphe, and onwards on the Avenue de la Grande Armée to the Pont de Neuilly and the Grande Arche de la Défense.  The opening in 1981 of the shopping mall Les Quatre Temps made a strong impact on the area and we enjoyed it always there,

The neighborhoods of the La Défense has connection from the boulevard circulaire or beltway to the interior and exterior on a one way basis. It is large of 160 hectares and divided into four sectors such as Arche Nord, Arche Sud, Esplanade Nord , and Esplanade Sud.  The neighborhood is surrounded around a huge pedestrian square of 31 hectares, surrounded by works of arts. The circulation is around the autoroute A14 reaching La Défense by two exits one at Courbevoie and the other at La Garenne-Colombes (road D992) and another onwards to Puteaux and Nanterre ( D913). There is an underground city and on transports it has even a bus terminal reaching all parkings  with many transports choices including metro line 1 ,RER A Tramway 2 ,the express lane bus Express A14, many bus lines, night bus N24. Here I have come by train ,tramway and car. Trains from the Gare Rive Droite in Versailles or Gare Saint Lazare in Paris, and tramway line 2 from Suresnes or by car along the Seine river ,D7 road.

A bit of condense history I like

The idea took thought in 1766 when Jean Rodolphe Perronet gives a road from his tower to mark the continuation of the Champs-Elysées with a prospective from the hill of Roule (future Place Charles de Gaulle /Arc de Triomphe) ,and the first houses of Neuilly , this road had the name of Chemin des Cours, and going to the hill of Chantecoq. At this location, it was designed a round square modeled after the Place de l’Etoile that was name Place de l’Etoile Chantecoq on whch an obelisk was placed of 40 meters  high. When the siege of Paris in 1870-71, the round square of Courbevoie was fortified and here was defended by the marching 19th regiment in 1870 after the Prussian show up in Malmaison. The round point became an obligatory passage of the French troops when preparing for the battle of Buzenval in 1870 and later in 1871. After the battle of Courbevoie in 1871, and during the uprisings of Paris, the troops from Versaillescame to hold here than fired upon the pont de Neuilly held by the volunteers of the French National Guard.

The urban revival of the area was and is huge.  The first generation towers all identical with a base of 42 by 24 meters and a height of 100 meters was done in 1966 by the Tour Nobel ; early in the 1970’s the second generation towers came into being with towers of more than 100K square meters such as the Tour Fiat (today call Areva) at 184 meters high and 44 floors. In 1970, the gare de la Défense was opened with the RER A. Later the third generation towers came to be on a more economical model.  Narrower and lower such as the Tour Pascal, Tour Voltaire, and on the neighborhood of Michelet. On a contest started in 1982, the Grande Arche de la Défense see its day as well as hotels, CNIT renovated, and the extension of line  1 of the metro opened in 1992 making Paris closer.

Today, La Défense is the first Business district of Europe! New towers are going up such as the T1 at 185 meters and Tour Granite at 184 meters,and also the biggest Tour First at 231 meters is the highest skyrise in France. ,also, Tour Seguoia and Tour Pascal. At the side of the city of Courbevoie, you have  the Tour D2 opened in 2015, Tour Carpe Diem opened in 2013 , and since early 2017 our world headquarters for my company.  Tour Majunga done in 2014, There will be two towers of more than 200 meters such as the Tour First ,Sisters, and Tour Air, , You have 20, towers of more than 150 meters and 46 towers of more than 100 meters. Taken a look from the bridge or Pont de Neuilly you have the crossroads of the pont de Neuilly a busy road  to make for the exits from the autoroute A14 the boulevard Circulaire (beltway) and the quays on the Seine river  crossed by an open air ride on the metro line 1. There is even a small vineyard there the Clos de Chantecoq on the border of the parvis. The Esplanade on the historical axis with trees and benches on a narrow passage way; then you come to the Place de la Défense on the circle and surrounded by the towers Ariane, Opus 12, Coeur Défense, etc, a very busy intersection by on foot folks and you find the information bureau and the museum of La Défense. The parvis itself is a huge space surrounded by the Grande Arche de la Défense , CNIT ,the shopping center Les 4 temps and underneath the exchange knot for public transports, huge underneath with tramway bus ,metro and RER ; and on top the place for the Christmas market ; all surrounded by nice streets such as the Place des Saisons, place Jean Millier, and the cours Valmy.Voilà !!!

The Île de France region tourist office on Suresnes :

The city of Suresnes on its heritage:

The Suresnes tourist office on its heritage:

The Île de France region tourist office  on La Défense:

The Grande Arche de la Défense :

The La Défense establish society management on its buildings :

The Hauts de Seine dept 92 tourist office on La Défense:

The Hauts de Seine dept 92 tourist office on the American cementery Suresnes:

There you go folks, an alternative to Paris proper is to go shopping, then eat at one of the many restaurants in the parvis and esplanade and walk with an eye view from the Grande Arche de la Défense ito the Arc de Triomphe and all the way tot he Arc du Carrousel. You can then climb above the Grande Arche for spectacular views of Paris. A good day with the family indeed. Again, hope you enjoy the post as I

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

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