Archive for ‘Europe’

August 12, 2019

From the old Hospital Richaud, the new Espace Richaud, Versailles of course!

It’s been a while do not share a post about my beloved Versailles. If you have been reading my posts , you know I lived here for almost 10 years and still my sentimental favorite. Versailles is sublime, royal, majestic and chic with nice town feel.

Anything to do with it I stay abreast of the news and a while back I wrote of the transformation of an icon in the city, and now very modern spaces. The city of Versailles did a survey believe was in 2016 where if found the visitors to the city 98% only see the Palace/museum!! What a pity, this is a piece of world history indeed in it. I am trying in my posts to show you the other Versailles as well.

As living there, I needed to do some backtracking to find pictures, as when you live as local found hard times to go around taking pictures lol! I actually took a whole lot more after I left as resident and visited as tourist lol! believe it or not…

Pictures are not allowed inside ,but is worth the detour is the Chapelle de l’Immaculate Conception. In your walks of the city and you must get out of the palace, at the end of rue royale, take a look at the Lycée Notre Dame de Grandchamp that houses a private school and next to it at 16 Rue Monseigneur Gibier, you have the Bishop’s office of the diocese of Versailles. And next to it at no 8 the  Chapelle de l’Immaculate Conception.

versailles

A bit of history of the Chapel of the Immaculate Conception,  and its meaning. It all started when the Order of St. Francis of Assisi, who in 1224 joined the Order of the Poor Ladies, of which its first abbess was the sister Claire. Hence the name adopted later: the Poor Clares., the nuns who joined them were called “Colettines”. The Poor Clares of Versailles belonged to this branch of the Franciscan Order. Some of their most important dates are : The apparitions of Our Lady at Bernadette, Lourdes 1858; Installation of Poor Clares Colettines at Versailles in 1860 ; Chapel consecrated in 1867 to the Immaculate Conception; Departure regretted of the Poor Clares in June 1999; and October 12, 2008, resumption of worship during the month of the Rosary of the year of the 150th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady in Lourdes: “I am the Immaculate Conception”.

The congregation official Catholic site in French of the chapelle de l’Immaculate Conception in Versailles

I like to take rememberence to the Hôpital Richaud, a venerable institution in Versailles who have seen its better days.  I have been in it and still have some pictures as to when it began to be change unfortunately. The Units have been transferred next door to a modern facility ,and the old hospital is been transformed into a luxury condo,apartment complex, the only building left will be the Chapel. The Chapel was, in the Convent of the Augustinians of Versailles or Couvent de la Reine, dedicated to the education of young ladies founded by Queen Marie Leszczynka,wife of Louis XV. It was done in 1772. It is very near my old home and easy to get here from Paris as my old route was from the Gare Rive Droite  Versailles on the Line Paris St Lazare, La Défense. If you are in city center Versailles by the rive gauche station nearest the palace you can take local bus phebus lines A, H, or G, arrêt/stop  Gare Rive Droite. Or do a nice walk and enjoy the wonderful historical and elegant architecture of Versailles!

versailles

L’hôpital Richaud, also known as the  Hôpital Royal de Versailles is completely restored and transformed since 2015 in housing, shops and liberal professions offices. The hospital is located in the Notre-Dame district in the center of Versailles near the Rive-Droite train station (my old neighborhood) . It is located also in this district and near the Notre-Dame Church, Lambinet Museum, Hoche High School and Saint-Jean-Hulst Private School. Two underground car parks have been dug on either side of the building, one under the bd de la Reine named Reine-Richaud and managed by Urbis Park, at the entrance rue du Maréchal Foch, and the another under the Place du Marché Notre-Dame, managed by Indigo.

versailles

This hospital Richaud has a long history since at its origin was the house of charity created by king Louis XIII in 1636 The construction work of the Royal Hospital of Versailles spread over a long period of nearly 80 years,and was not finishing until 1859. The site was assigned a hospital function: first modest ‘charity house’ held by the Daughters of St. Vincent de Paul, the institution has seen its patient attendance grow over the years   until the 1960s.

After the transfer of activities to the Hôpital Mignot hospital site in 1981, the site goes through many years of neglect. This hospital is next to my boys high school in Le Chesnay now new town of Le Chesnay-Rocquencourt (as of Jan 2019) , just a street over from the city of Versailles!  City of le Chesnay-Rocquencourt and the Hospital Mignot

In November 2009, the real estate promotor organisation ,OGIC acquired almost the entire Royal Hospital of Versailles from the French State via the town to turn it into housing, with 20% of social housing, shops and gardens . The opening to the public of the whole of the Carré des Siècles,(square of centuries) new name given to the real estate site was made in April 2015. It is a block of housing (317 dwellings including 66 upscale apartments and 91 social housing or students), shops (five in number) and offices ( nearly 3000 m2), with a cultural space that can accommodate exhibitions or concerts, a daycare of 66 cradles and 10.000 m2 of public gardens.

The renovated chapel, now Space Richaud, now hosts exhibitions, the largest as of this date being the one dedicated to the Little Prince, as well as plays in the context of the month of Molière.

Some webpages to help you see more of the site of Richaud are

City of Versailles and the Space Richaud

Tourist office of Versailles on the hospital and chapel restore

General Hospital Richaud of Versailles today

And there you can see it, you can go in and visit the espace Richaud or old royal Chapel and see still the beauty of it. Just another gem in my beloved Versailles, do see it, and behold. Versailles is a lot more than a palace!

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

 

 

 

 

 

August 11, 2019

Tour Tanguy at Brest!

So let me bring you back to a very nice feature of Brest. I have written several posts on this quant city of the north of the Finistére dept 29 of Bretagne. However, this part is rather nice so figure deserves a post on its own. Here it is for you, hope you like as I do.

As arrive by car and park in front of the Château, then do our walks all over the city. While passing by the Recouvrance bridge we noted this ancient tower right in the harbor not knowing what it was we headed for it. Well, it is a very nice museum of the city of Brest. I like to tell you a bit more on it.

The Bastille Quilbignon or Motte-Tanguy tower is built on a rocky mound along the Penfeld river, facing the castle of Brest, Recouvrance. It is accessed from Rue de la Porte by the Place Pierre-Péron, at the foot of the Recouvrance bridge. This tower of the 14C houses the museum of old Brest.

Brest

The origin of the medieval tower could not be determined very precisely. Tradition give it as founder Tanguy I of Chastel, lord at the castle of Trémazan in Landunvez, which was illustrated in the struggle of Brittany against England and contributed to the development of the right bank. But the construction is probably posterior.

In 1386 the Duke of Brittany Jean IV undertook the siege of the castle of Brest occupied by the English. To ensure the blockade he leaned on two bastilles: one facing the castle, the other at Quilbignon on the right bank, called Bastille Kerneguez, simple wooden fort. The Bastille of Kerneguez was taken and destroyed by the Duke of Lancaster. In 1387 Jean IV rebuilt the two stone buildings, much stronger than before

It is very likely that this Bastille Kerneguez, mentioned as being on the edge of the Penfeld river facing the castle, became the property of the family of Chastel after the departure of the English in 1397. The name of the Bastille gave way to that of Tanguy tower, first name worn by several members of this line. Their weapons are engraved above the door.

Until about 1580, the Tanguy tower served as the seat of justice of the lords of the Châtel, before they transfer it to a neighboring house. Then neglected, the tower became the property of the Rohan-Guéméné family in 1786 then passed into the Royal domain before being sold as national property during the French revolution to the Sieur Gabon. It becomes at this time the Cabon Tower. In 1862, it is acquired by the architect Barillé who transforms it into a dwelling house. It’s last resident and private owner, Dr. Joseph Thielmans, leaves her after the fire during the fighting of 1944 in WWII.

Brest

The city of Brest becomes the owner in 1954. The Tanguy tower is restored and inaugurates the museum of old Brest in 1962 which then had only two rooms. A third room was opened to the public in July 1964. In 1971, a pepper mill was added to it and its neo-Gothic cornice was replaced with crenellations to give it a medieval silhouette. The museum houses a set of models and historical reconstructions that constitute a walk through the picturesque streets of Brest before 1939, that is to say in the city as it was before the Allied bombing during  WWII. On two floors, there are models, huge dioramas (paintings painted in relief), official documents of several eras, photos and rare postcards, a collection of coats of arms or the map of the old Brest with the Vauban fortifications. Dioramas made by the Brest artist Jim Sévellec represent the great episodes in the history of Brest.  The tour Tanguy is divided into three section, the street level, (1fl US etc ), first floor and second floor, all very nice.

Brest

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

City of Brest on the history of Tanguy tower

Tourist office of Brest on the Tanguy tower museum

And there you go another dandy in nice Brest in the lovely Finistére of Bretagne. The Tanguy tower museum is worth the detour in the city and close to the main museums in the castle.

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

 

 

August 11, 2019

The towers of La Rochelle, Lantern!

So let me show something wonderful just a few hours south of my house and a place we came to love as my oldest son study hotellerie/restaurant courses there. He went and we follow, to our amazed eyes several years back, and have since return several times. I will be telling you about the tours or towers of the harbor of La Rochelle, Charente-Maritime dept  17 in the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine! Bear with me on repetitions…as introduction is the same.

Once in town, we walk, and walk is a walker’s paradise of quaint old streets and historical buildings, we took the tour de la Chaine, tour de St Nicolas, and the  tour de la Lantern. The development of this new city of the 11C is assured from the 14C by the protection offered by the towers, including the towers of St. Nicholas and the Chaine that regulate the entry of many merchant ships in its port.

All three designed to serve as a residence, two towers out of three (ie the tower of Saint Nicolas and the tower of the Chaine) were also places of detention between the 16C and 18C for the Huguenots and foreign sailors. They then become military prisons in the 19C. The Lantern Tower was used to disarm the boats upstream of the port and was a lighthouse. The boutiques of the Chaîne and Saint-Nicolas towers offer throughout the year a wide range of books, products for young and old. The shops are free access and are open 7 days a week during the opening hours of the towers.

The Tour de la Lantern or tower (was on renovations when stopped by) is from the 15C is one of the 3 towers in the seafront of La Rochelle.  An order of the city dating from 1209 already mentions the existence of a Tower of the Chain, having nothing to do with the current Tower of the Chain, but having the same function. In effect, this one then barred the entry of the primitive harbor of La Rochelle located on the brook of Lafond, and was subsequently called “Tour du Garrot” after the name of the lifting device which was used to disarm the vessels before that they can enter the port. The tower captain was referred to as the “disarmer of the vessels”. the new building, begun in 1445, incorporated by lining this old tower. It was completed only 23 years later in 1468.

la rochelle

The various names of the tower ; the oldest was Garrot Tower. In 1568, in order to reinforce the walls, the churches are destroyed. Catholics flee from the walls, but 13 priests are arrested and locked in the tower. They will be slaughtered and thrown into the sea from the top of the tower the following weeks. The tower then took the nickname of Tower of the Priests. Nickname which was reinforced after the slaughter of four other priests by the crowd, during the French revolution in 1798.  Finally, in 1822, two of the protagonists of the Conspiracy of La Rochelle are locked in the tower before being executed in Paris with two others, same year. The tower then took the nickname of tour of the Four Sergeants. The tower of the Lantern  has a height of 55 meters, it consists of two parts. Its base is a cylinder 25 meters high and more than 15 meters in diameter, overhung by an octagonal arrow, four of the eight sides are pierced with three-lobed windows  in Flamboyant style.

Several rooms superimposed make up the interior of the tower of the Lantern: The salle basse (lower room). The salle des gardes  (guard room) located on the first floor (2nd US), this room is access to the tower from the ramparts wall. The level, divided into two rooms, retains two gunboats, a fireplace and a 19C oven. The Niveau or Level 3 ;the level is cut in half by a split wall . The wall divides the level into two rooms: the salle du désarmeur des nefs  (disarmer room of the vessels) and the salle de la pistole (Pistol’s room). The disarmer room of the vessels has a study, latrines. The room, called pistole, has inscriptions, including Spanish, religious, companions, corsairs, etc. The dormitory is the 4th level (5th US), it could accommodate more than 100 inmates. It includes as in the rest of the tower graffiti French, English, Dutch, poems, representations of ships .etc.  chemin de ronde ( walkway) . salle Jehan Mérichon ( Jehan Mérichon Room) ,this room is named after the former mayor of La Rochelle who financed the completion of the tower. Jehan Mérichon was mayor of La Rochelle five times and was advisor to King Louis XI. The prison cells are spread over two levels that were created in the 19C. They initially had openings that were closed during the restoration of the early 20C. The salle de l’amer (Bitter’s  room ), this room contains the most beautiful graffiti of ships of the tower. On the ground floor , a labyrinth can evoke the prison, the confinement … Suspended with the arrow of the tower, a vertical stele can symbolize the escape, the freedom.

The Tour de la Lantern is 38 meters high, the gallery offers an exceptional view of the city center and the bay of La Rochelle which explains the involvement of the tower in the lookout of the sea. The current lantern is a reconstruction. Unlike the La Chaîne and Saint-Nicolas towers, the Lantern tower has only two spiral staircases. The lower room is connected to none of them. The first serves all the rooms up to the walkway. It is capped by a stone pyramid of four sides. In addition to the flamboyant Gothic style hooks, one of the sides includes a stone inset under which was inscribed the completion of the tower dated 1468 and its attribution to Mayor Jean Mérichon. The second narrower connects the walkway to the gallery and the bitter hall. It is crown by the Lantern.

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

Official National Monument Tours of La Rochelle

Tourist office of La Rochelle on the towers

There you go this is an amazing tower and well worth the visit to La Rochelle, a beautiful city indeed.

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

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August 10, 2019

The towers of La Rochelle, Chaîne!

So let me show something wonderful just a few hours south of my house and a place we came to love as my oldest son study hotellerie/restaurant courses there. He went and we follow, to our amazed eyes several years back, and have since return several times. I will be telling you about the tours or towers of the harbor of La Rochelle, Charente-Maritime dept  17 in the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine! Bear with me on repetitions…as introduction is the same.

Once in town, we walk, and walk is a walker’s paradise of quaint old streets and historical buildings, we took the tour de la Chaine, tour de St Nicolas, and the  tour de la Lantern. The development of this new city of the 11C is assured from the 14C by the protection offered by the towers, including the towers of St. Nicholas and the Chaine that regulate the entry of many merchant ships in its port.

All three designed to serve as a residence, two towers out of three (ie the tower of Saint Nicolas and the tower of the Chaine) were also places of detention between the 16C and 18C for the Huguenots and foreign sailors. They then become military prisons in the 19C. The Lantern Tower was used to disarm the boats upstream of the port and was a lighthouse. The boutiques of the Chaîne and Saint-Nicolas towers offer throughout the year a wide range of books, products for young and old. The shops are free access and are open 7 days a week during the opening hours of the towers.

The tour de la Chaîne or tower of the Chain  is  20 meters today, from the base of the parapet. It has a diameter of 16 meters and its wall is 3.50 meters thick. It was surmounted by a capuche, or roof in the form of a slate peppered roof, which, rebuilt several times at different heights, The tower was crowned with battlements with cruciform loopholes, with machicolations.

La Rochelle

The salle d’accueil (reception room) is the only one to have resisted the episode of the Fronde (local wars). The Grande salle (great hall), with its chimney, was in the 14C the reception room of the tower. The stairs, leading to the third level (4th US) , are vaulted into segmental cradle. The salle du capitaine (Captain’s room) originally, the room was a space reserved for the captain of the tower. The salle suspendue (suspended room) . It materializes one of the levels that disappeared during the collapse of the tower in 1651. The main building was the guardhouse that was built in the wall connecting the petite tour de la Chaîne  (small tower of the chain) to the Grosse tour de la Chaîne (big tower of the chain). François Rabelais evokes the chain closing the old port in his book, Pantagruel!.

La Rochelle

The Tour de la Chaîne is from this tower that was maneuvered the chain, fixed in the tower Saint-Nicolas on the other bank, so as to prohibit access to the port. In fact, there were two towers of the Chain at this spot: a small tower of the Chain which sheltered the capstan serving to stretch the chain; a big tower of the Chain intended to lodge the captain of the tower, his family and the garrison; the two towers are interconnected by a two-level gallery. The precise date of construction is unknown perhaps between 1378 and 1380 or between 1382 and 1390. A captain lives there until 1472 , and from 1472, the tower becomes the residence of the governor of the city.

The Tour de la Chaîne  hosts a café which occupies the second level and the high bastion or terrace. The entrance is at the level of the wall. The first level, there is a  model of the city of yesteryear, access to the room was from the port. Unlike the two other towers of the port, the tower of the Chain did not find its vocation of museum until  very late. For this purpose, the restoration of the third level of the tower was undertaken in 1998. The space allows to host an exhibition on the Huguenot past of the city. At the fourth level of the tower  it is certain that it existed formerly, no trace could allow to reconstitute it in the identical today. This lack of reference has made a very contemporary choice with a suspended floor that seems to float at the top of the tower. Devoted to a museum, the tower can be visit all year long.

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

Official National Monument Tours of La Rochelle

Tourist office of La Rochelle on the towers

There you go this is an amazing tower and well worth the visit to La Rochelle, a beautiful city indeed.

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

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August 10, 2019

The towers of La Rochelle, St Nicolas!

So let me break from restaurants and show something wonderful just a few hours south of my house and a place we came to love as my oldest son study hotellerie/restaurant courses there. He went and we follow, to our amazed eyes several years back, and have since return several times. I will be telling you about the tours or towers of the harbor of La Rochelle, Charente-Maritime dept  17 in the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine! Bear with me on repetitions…as introduction is the same.

Once in town, we walk, and walk is a walker’s paradise of quaint old streets and historical buildings, we took the tour de la Chaine, tour de St Nicolas, and the  tour de la Lantern. The development of this new city of the 11C is assured from the 14C by the protection offered by the towers, including the towers of St. Nicholas and the Chaine that regulate the entry of many merchant ships in its port.

All three designed to serve as a residence, two towers out of three (ie the tower of Saint Nicolas and the tower of the Chaine) were also places of detention between the 16C and 18C for the Huguenots and foreign sailors. They then become military prisons in the 19C. The Lantern Tower was used to disarm the boats upstream of the port and was a lighthouse. The boutiques of the Chaîne and Saint-Nicolas towers offer throughout the year a wide range of books, products for young and old. The shops are free access and are open 7 days a week during the opening hours of the towers.

Tour St Nicolas is the most impressive one in my opinion.

Because of the marshy terrain, the tower rests on a raft. The latter consists of six-meter-long oak piles with metal shoes embedded in the mud and wedged with stones, the whole being covered with a grid of horizontal beams and acting as foundations. However, the weight of the tower and the loose nature of the ground led to a destabilization of the foundations during its construction, and an important rise of the building, more than twenty centimeters, towards the East. This inclination will be maintained during the restoration of the tower, so that the soil today still has an inclination of about 2%, although it has been raised 50 cm from the original soil.

La Rochelle

The circular tower is 37 meters high and 18 to 23 meters in diameter. Originally, the tower was isolated from the rest of the city by marshy areas, but following the construction of the Gabut Bastion, it was joined to the urban fabric of La Rochelle, which extended to its base.The access ramp, which today provides direct access to the reception room on the first floor (2nd US) , did not originally exist, and was only built in 1695. Traffic at the interior of the building is done by two independent staircases but connecting all the levels.

La Rochelle

Salle du veilleur  (warden’s room), This small room on the ceiling adorned with arches of ogives with carved pedestals was used to monitor the entrance to the port. The ship owner’s room, The Salle de l’Armateur  (ship-owner’s room) is a large octagonal room with a cross vault of ogives with carved pedestals. It was used as a point of attachment to the chain which was used to close the port entrance, and which was operated from the Tour de la Chaine, on the other side.

The salle d’accueil (reception room), located on the first floor (2nd US), is accessible from the access ramp and overlooks the room of the low lookout. It is also connected to the chapel, on the second floor by a staircase. This room served as a reception room. Located on the first floor of the tower, the salle de la vigie basse (room of the low vigil)  is accessible from the reception room and gives access to a staircase to the salle du troubadour, (troubadour room), on the second floor. It used to have an outdoor wooden platform to monitor vessel traffic. The openings allowing the guards to access the rooms were later turned into firing holes. The hall houses an important 17C vault owned by one of the captains of the tower. The troubadour room, on the second floor, is connected by a staircase to the room of the low lookout, the lower one. It provides access to the latrines and to the salle du capitaine (captain’s room) through a defense corridor. The Captain’s Room is located on the second floor and is connected by a defense corridor to the troubadour room. It provides access to the  salle des coussièges (cushion room). It is also connected by a staircase to the walkway on the third floor. It used to be the residence of the captain and his family. The salle des coussièges (hall of cushions)  is an open recess on the captain’s room that also gives access to the captain’s study. The captain’s study is accessible from the cushion room. The tower has a chapel, located on the second floor, vertical to the entrance of the tower, probably playing a role of symbolic protection. It is directly connected to the reception room, on the first floor by a staircase, and to the walkway, by another staircase. The walkway is located on the third floor, and gives access to the guard corridor and the petite salle des gardes. (small guard room). It is connected to the second floor by a staircase to the captain’s room at one end, and at the other end by a staircase to the chapel. The small guard room served as a shelter and resting place between two rounds. The fourth floor Salle de veille du capitaine (Captain’s watch room), and the fifth floor, the  Terrace.

A bit of history I like

The tower of Saint-Nicolas  14C  is, with the tower of the Chaine and the tower of the Lantern, one of the three towers of the seafront of La Rochelle, and one of the two towers emblematic of the Old Port , of which it constitutes the majestic door of entry. For five centuries it provided for the defense of the pass and served as a point of attachment to the chain, stretched from the other side, which was used to prohibit access to the port. The construction of the Saint-Nicolas tower  begins, according to the sources, around 1345 or between 1374 and 1394.  From 1652 to 1659, the tower houses the Hamburg’s naval carpenters companions, who came to La Rochelle to set up a shipyard. From 1569, and more widely during the 16C and 17C, the tower was used episodically weapons depot, powder keg and prison during the wars of religion: Huguenots were locked there between 1682 and 1686, at the the time of the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. During the French revolution, the tower was used until 1793 to imprison Chouans (local rebels against the French revolution).

La Rochelle

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

Official National Monument Tours of La Rochelle

Tourist office of La Rochelle on the towers

There you go this is an amazing tower and well worth the visit to La Rochelle, a beautiful city indeed.

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

 

 

 

 

 

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August 9, 2019

A bit of Neuilly-sur-Seine!

So here I am  and coming back to tell you about my regular routines. I have mentioned in previous posts, that I am lucky enough to have worked in Paris for almost 10 years and now the priviledge to visit it almost every month on business runs and one or two a year on family pleasure runs.

Of course, I go over into our former home and the wonderful city of Versailles, but also, do get some runs into less frequented towns around Paris. This is the case of a nice chic Neuilly-sur-Seine in dept 92 of Hauts de Seine, region of ïle de France! 

neuilly sur seine

This is one of my typical runs to Paris almost every month now. However, not on the tour de France weekend darn! This was last month !

I went back to my beloved Paris again, and this time to my ultra chic quartier des sablons in Neuilly-sur-Seine, dept 92.  This was an area that I used to passed by for work and pleasure, so know it well; this time had a play  at the marvelous théatre des sablons, More info here: https://www.theatredessablons.com/

neuilly sur seine

neuilly sur seine

Well, I went by TGV train from Auray to Montparnasse, and then took metro line 13 to my hotel,  at Grand Hotel du Calvados, next to the train station at 20 Rue d’Amsterdam, 9éme; info here: Grand Hotel de Calvados Paris, right by the Gare Saint Lazare, typical hotel here is smallish rooms and baths, basic breakfast place, nice friendly staff, good for a night or two and or single or couples. It is centrally located with unlimited transportation options. In a hurry no pictures kept lol!!!

However, before reaching the hotel ,I stop for dinner at Restaurant Le Maresquier same owners) at 12 pl Saint Augustin; wonderful modern ambiance and inventive fusion food, with a côte de cochon that was to kill for it and great southwestern Madiran red Tourus, nice souffle grand marnier to boot all for 54 euros, tops, chic, class, well done.   More info here: https: https://www.lemaresquier-paris.com/

paris

It was an easy to roam area, nice updated, Gare Saint Lazare is wonderful with a big modern shopping center inside. The area seems lively, good ambiance, more crowded!!

paris

Next day  ,off I went to the theater of Sablons or Théatre des Sablons, I took bus 43 right at the Pasquier-Anjou stop across from the Chapelle Expiatoire monument to Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette many missed. The bus dropped me off at Chartres just next to the theater. The line is here from RATP , Line 43 info here: https://www.ratp.fr/plans-lignes/busratp/43

Then, in the evening, I took bus 82 right at Chartres stop too, and it goes all the way to Gare de Montparnasse in rue des departs, wonderful right to some of the best spots in Paris such Tour Eiffel! The line from RATP  ,line 82 info here: https://www.ratp.fr/plans-lignes/busratp/82

Had my late night snack at Ekki Porte Océane (the old brasserie porte Océane closed missed it) at Montparnasse, and took my TGV back to Auray. The parking here is free, so very nice indeed. It is ,also,, the closest to my house now about 20 minute car ride. Reaching home by almost midnight and ready to work  next day lol!! on a very light day.

So will start backward on this post lol! No I am ok just different today. Let me tell you a bit on the town of Neuilly-sur-Seine !

The town of Neuilly sur Seine  is bounded on the east and south by Paris (from east to south: Porte de Villiers, Porte des Ternes, Porte Maillot, Bois de Boulogne), to the west by the Seine river ( La Defense, on the towns  of Courbevoie and Puteaux) and north by the town of Levallois-Perret by  rue de Villiers.  It includes a large part of the island of La Jatte (with the exception of its northern point attached to Levallois-Perret), and the northeastern end of the island of Puteaux, whose part in NSS  is also known under the name of Ïle du Pont ( bridge Island).  The national road N13 in Neuilly SS takes the name Avenue Charles-de-Gaulle, formerly Avenue de Neuilly. It is an extension, to  La Defense and the west of the Paris area, of the Avenue des Champs-Elysées and the Avenue de la Grande-Armée in Paris.

More on the interesting island or ïle de la Jatte here: Tourist office of Paris on the island of Jatte

A bit of history I like

The crossing point or ford will later turn into a port and this port is a gap of Clichy, built on the wharf of the abbey of Saint Denis. The name will then turn into the port of Luny, port of Nully (1346) then Neuilly. Until 1700, the strategic importance of the bridge established on this place on the Seine river  is such that it was  call the Pont-Neuilly.  A wooden bridge is built following the fall of the ferry carriage of Henry IV and Marie de Medici in June 1606. In 1772, under Louis XV, a stone bridge 219 meters long was built, the bridge is this time in the historical axis and no longer in the extension of the current rue du Pont. In 1942, a metal bridge replaces it as the current  Pont de Neuilly bridge. In 1992, the bridge was widened to allow the surface crossing of the extension of line 1 of the metro to La Défense.

King François I, on his return from prison in  Spain in 1529, built the castle of Boulogne, on the edge of the forest of Rouvray ( Bois de Boulogne is the part that remains today) which, under Louis XIII, took the name of Château de Madrid . It is demolished in 1793, during the French revolution. It was located approximately around 31 Boulevard Commandant-Charcot. No vestige remains. Only a few traffic routes keep the name, such as the driveway, the villa or the avenue de Madrid.  In 1777, Claude Baudard de Vaudésir of Saint Gemmes General Treasurer of the Navy of Louis XV, who will be dismissed for embezzlement, had built and develop a domain planted with trees and shrubs  sought after,  la Folie Saint-James (madness Saint-James) . In  July 6, 1815 Wellington comes to Neuilly where he establishes his headquarters at the  Folie Saint-James and leaves on the 8th, to come to Paris

It is in 1786 in Neuilly, under Louis XVI, that the apothecary Antoine Parmentier will try the first cultures of the potato in the plain of Sablons.  At the French revolution, Port Neuilly  becomes a town ,  February 7, 1790, The castle of Neuilly built from 1751 and modified by Joachim Murat who bought it in 1802, is the favorite residence of King Louis-Philippe and his family from 1830 to 1848. The castle of Neuilly was burned during the Revolution of 1848 (February revolution and the 3rd since the monarchy was put down in 1789) . Only one wing remains, located at 52 boulevard d’Argenson, occupied today by the Congregation of the Sisters St. Thomas of Villeneuve.

In 1859, the district of Ternes is detached from the town to be included in the new Paris of Haussmann. Before that date, Neuilly, with its hamlet of Ternes), extended to the Place de l’Etoile, bounded on the east by the current Avenue Kléber and Avenue Wagram . In 1866, the vicinity of the Porte de Champerret gate will also be detached to form part of the new town of Levallois-Perret.  An extension of the Treaty of Versailles, the Treaty of Neuilly between the Allies and Bulgaria is signed, November 27, 1919, in the hall of the city/town hall. In 1929, the town of Neuilly-sur-Seine gives the city of Paris its share of the Bois de Boulogne and a hexametric band along the 17éme arrondissement.

Other than the above theater, some things to see I like are

The parish Church Saint-Jacques, located at 167 boulevard Bineau, was built in 1936. The parish Church Saint-Pierre, located at 90 Avenue du Roule (Avenue Achille-Peretti), was built between 1883 and 1914. It includes a Grand-Orgue  Mutin-Cavaillé-Coll from 1898.  The castle of Neuilly, currently a convent of the sisters of Saint-Thomas-de-Villeneuve, located at  52 boulevard d’Argenson. Of the castle destroyed in 1848, remains today only the north wing, known as the pavillon of Madame-Adélaïde ( younger sister of Louis-Philippe d’Orléans,king of the French) . This wing was acquired in 1907 by the sisters of Saint Thomas de Villeneuve, and  a chapel and a building attached to the municipal hospital relying on the ruins of the castle.  Park of the Folie Saint-James,  this park, located at  34 avenue de Madrid,  and the Park of the Convent Saint-Thomas de Villeneuve, this  park, located at 52 boulevard d’Argenson.

Some webpages to help you come visit this chic town just across the Seine river from Paris are

City of Neuilly sur Seine on its heritage in French

Tourist office of Hauts de Seine dept 92 on walks in Neuilly sur Seine

There you go an oasis of tranquility and class just bordering Paris, the off the beaten path, Neuilly sur Seine. Worth the detour by the theater and church of St Pierre and wonderful stores or go into the bois de Boulogne by the boulevard des Sablons into the Jardin d’Acclimatation! 

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

 

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August 9, 2019

The manufacture des Tabacs at Morlaix!

So let me take back to my region of Brittany and something off the beaten path but worth stopping by especially as it is going thru a transformation that will be super for all to see. I have done briefs on it in my posts on Morlaix but feel now deserves a post of its own. I will be telling you about the Manufacture des Tabacs or the Tabacco Factory of Morlaix.

The Manufacture des Tabacs or Morlaix Tobacco Factory is a group of buildings located on the quai de Léon in Morlaix. This is in the Finistére dept 29 of the region of Brittany. I will skip the town as already mentioned in previous posts in my blog.

The manufacture des Tabacs was built in four stages: the main buildings, subdivided into three groups (manufacture, stores, logis) were built between 1736 and 1740 according to the plans of Jean-François Blondel, member of the Royal Academy of Architecture. During the inter-war period, four new buildings were added, crowned by a concrete frame imitating green wood.  The Chamber of Commerce and Industry  (CCI) of Morlaix acquires the monument in April 2001.

Morlaix

In December 2007, the entire west wing of the architectural ensemble found new assignments: artists’ studios, businesses, offices , etc.  At the end of 2008, a first installment of repairs to the fireworks and burned roofs is completed. In 2009, the development of courts and public passages are made, allowing it to open a little more this property complex to the rest of the city.  On May 24, 2013, the Espace des Sciences and Morlaix Communauté sign an agreement to open a branch of the Espace des Sciences in the tobacco factory of Morlaix in 2015.

Morlaix

A bit of old history I like

The Manufacture des Tabacs de Morlaix must be one of the oldest in France. It already existed in 1689, because there are records of the hospice, that the children of this establishment worked and made ankles for the manufacture. In 1667, the Monarchy having reserved the monopoly of the manufacture of tobacco, leased it to Sr. Jean Breton. In 1718 this monopoly returned to the general farm; it was then that it was established a factory in Morlaix.  From 1723 to 1747, the East India Company owned the tobaccos, the company was obliged to build a new building, which rose on the Quai de Leon instead called the Clos-Marant. The new Royal factory was completed in 1736-40.

The Manufacture des Tabacs produces snuff, chew and smoke until the dawn of the 21C. The advent of the steam induces the construction of new premises between 1868 and 1871. Four other buildings surmounted by a concrete frame, called “the Cathedral”, are erected between the two wars.  At the height of its activity, around 1880, the Manu employs more than 1,800 people. First manual (hence the name of Manufacture), the production is mechanized from the late 19C. Machines are improving and the number of jobs is decreasing. In 1995, the establishment has only 185 employees. Production begins to be delocalized. It is then that a large fire seriously damages part of the site. The announced closure of the Manu is experienced here as a historical, social and economic wrench.

Until the decree of the National Assembly, dated March 20, 1791, under the French revolution, which abolished the monopoly, recognized to all French the right to cultivate, manufacture and sell tobacco. The tobacco factory was closed and a large number of workers were out of work.  The buildings, which were almost entirely rebuilt in 1868-1871, are immense, the courtyards spacious, the workshops vast and well ventilated, but the whole is without architectural character.

There is a future for all wonderful beautiful things in my belle France!

The Manufacture des Tabacs that for 250 years was a main motor of fabrication of cigars etc, today it is save by administrative offices and it is open to the public to showcase it.  A reconversion project was born: the Manu, hitherto closed to the public, will become a new city district combining economic, administrative, cultural and educational activities, around a few dwellings. The CCI takes charge of the project management of all the works. Of the 31,000m² of the site, 10,000m² of buildings without heritage interest are demolished between 2003 and 2005.  In order to make this project feasible, work is needed to rehabilitate 3600 m2 of this historic monument. This site also includes the restoration of 14 preserved machines and 12 mills to grate as well as the creation of an attractive scenography, Including the installation of “Espace des Sciences”, a unique science center in France that will open in 2020. This real palace of discovery will have the mission of promoting the heritage and history of the Manufacture and promoting scientific and industrial culture through exhibitions, workshops, events and conferences for all. Great indeed, we will return.

Morlaix

Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

City of Morlaix on the tobacco factory in French

Tourist office of dept 29 Finistere on Morlaix in English

Tourist office of Brittany on Morlaix in English

There you go, i hope you have the chance to stop by this wonderful town of Morlaix, we like it and have memorable moments here with the family. As said, we will return to see the Manufacture des Tabacs or Tobacco factory fully restore in 2020. See you!

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

August 9, 2019

The megaliths of Locmariaquer!

So let me bring you closer to me just south of me in fact on the coast. This is Locmariaquer in my Morbihan region of Brittany. I come here often and other than the beautiful beach and bars (see my other posts) I need to touch more in detail the megaliths of Locmariaquer.

These are stones really that it seems nobody has determine where they come from or how they were done or what purposes! There are a lot of hypothèses but not a real conclusion accepted by all responsible organisms. I will just tell you a bit on them borrowed from their official sites.

The town of Locmariaquer is located at the western mouth of the Gulf of Morbihan and has many beaches overlooking the Bay of Quiberon, western part of Mor Braz which opens access to the Atlantic Ocean. Love to come here for a drink or lunch across from the bridge into the sea!

Another wonderful site to come and see is the megaliths of Locmariaquer or the ancient stones monument of this region. The town is another major site for them. Locmariaquer is home to a remarkable concentration of megaliths. The grouping is about 10 kms from Carnac and considered one of the most complete site.

locmariaquer

Some of these are the large, shattered menhir of Er Grah, the world’s largest menhir, nearly 20 meters, and weighting  280 tons!!!, the biggest stone in Europe!!!, and done 2000 years before those of Carnac , currently broken into four pieces. The impressive dimensions of this menhir still divide specialists as to the techniques used for its transport and implementation, but the work done by the Neolithic remains remarkable.

locmariaquer

Locmariaquer

Cairn of the Merchant’s Table:  Dated 3,700 BC north-south orientation. This dolmen, about 12 meters long, has a room whose height is unusual in this type of monument: almost 2.50 meters! In fact, the explanation lies in the chronology of the construction of this burial. The magnificent carved sandstone slab, forming the back of the room, was originally erected in the open air. It depicts an idol in a crest, surrounded by a radiant hair, and covered with butts. The back of this stele also bears engravings. The ceiling slab of the room is also decorated with engravings: an axe, a butt, and the lower part of a bovid. This last engraving being incomplete, it is understood that the slab was originally intended to be larger, and that it was broken. Indeed, the second part of this block was found on the dolmen of the island of Gavrinis, and the third is probably the cover slab of the mound of Er Grah.

locmariaquer

Mounds of Er Grah:  About 4,000 BC The tomb, without access from the outside, was in a first phase surrounded by a cairn of stones, then it was enlarged by the construction of two extensions of stone and earth, bringing its total length to nearly 140m! Probably the burial of an important figure, who justified such a deployment of works, the vault, looted several times, unfortunately delivered only a pendeloque in green variscite.  offering a unique witness to the exceptional funeral rites practice in Brittany at the time of the Neolithic era. The flat stones, a long-bent dolmen of nearly 25 meters.

Dolmen of Kercadoret :  Located on the left of the route d’ Auray road D781 when you go to Locmariaquer, this little dolmen has kept only the 6 support slabs of the room as well as a block of cover.  It is known from this tomb that it was reused in the Bronze Age, as evidenced by the discovery of a copper javelin tip and very beautiful flint arrowheads.

Dolmen of Kerveresse : All that remains of this monument is the bedroom and a hallway primer, 13 pillars support 2 slabs of roof. Inside, on some of the pillars, are engraved with butts, and you can also see cupules on the ceiling.

The Mane-Lud tumulus :  Dolmen dated to the Middle Neolithic, reused in the early Bronze Age around 2,220 BC. This dolmen, accessible by the departmental road D781 and located on the edge of the Nélud subdivision. We go down a modern staircase. It is oriented north-south, the corridor, begun by modern constructions, was about 6 meters long, and the room was about 3.60 meters long. 29 blocks serve as a support for 5 slabs of cover, and the floor is made up of two huge slabs.  Eight of the supports are engraved, and bear frequent symbols on the megaliths of the region: corniforms, butts, axe blades and axes shriveled, serpent form, cupules, crests, and symbols sometimes interpreted as rowing boats. The floor of the chamber is made up of a carved slab, the very particular shape of which evokes an idol in crest. It is most likely a stele, (erected stone) originally erected in the open air, and used for reuse for the paving of this dolmen, as well as for the large roof slab.  To the east of this dolmen, the east-west oriented mound is in fact a mound, probably dated to the Bronze Age (dimensions 80 x 50 meters and 5.50 meters high), and which contained a funerary vault as well as five standing stones surmounted by horse skulls in the eastern part. Objects presented at the Vannes and Carnac Museums.

locmariaquer

Tumulus of Mané et Hroêk; this tumulus, 100 meters long and 60 meters wide, 10 meters high, was excavated in 1863. This princely tomb concealed in its center a four-meter long burial chamber in which the researchers found exceptional furnishings, comprising of 106 polished axes in jade, as well as beads and pendulous in variscite, hidden for the most part under the paving of the vault. At the entrance to the room were three fragments of a carved slab. The decoration represents in the center a crest, figuration of the mother goddess, containing a horned sign and two small sticks; above and below, a series of driven axes and finally, at the bottom, a more combusting axe, with a ring at the bottom of the handle.

Room and tumulus of the Mané-Rutual :  Accessible via the ruelle de Bronzo.  Around 3,800 BC The hallway and the bedroom are about 15 meters long, the room is double: on two occasions, an advance of blocks on each side forms a narrowing, which compartmentalizes the room into two parts (we can speak of antechamber and chamber). 39 supports form the walls; the whole is covered by 6 slabs. The roof slab of the room is 11.30 meters long and 4 meters wide, and is largely overflowing on the back of the monument. It is decorated with a magnificent crest, and was also originally a large stele intended to be erected, and which was later reused in roof slab.  On the ceiling of the antechamber, there is an axe-Prue, a motif found on one of the supports of this part of the monument. On the next block are two butts. Objects found in excavation presented at the Vannes museum.

Men Er Letionec: Pointe de Kerpenhir, on the edge of the Gulf, this 3.4 meters high menhir would be the only remnant of an ancient cromlech.

Locmariaquer

Mein Er Mere: Visible at low tide north of the village pier, this 8 meters block is a menhir, but it is not clear what it does at this location: was it erected there, it would testify in this case of the rise of the waters since the Neolithic  or was it being transported?

Some webpages to help you further enjoy these wonderful sites are

Official National Monument info on the megaliths of Locmariaquer

The city of Locmariaquer on the megaliths in French

There you go and if you want to mix history architecture and old stones with beautiful beaches and great fish/seafood then you must come to Locmariaquer! Only 28 km from me or about 17 miles!

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

August 8, 2019

Châtillon Chocolats at Pleyben!

As I have done several posts on my favorite family memorable restaurants of my travel history (some), I have done some on food and delicacies of my belle France. Well how about my beautiful Bretagne/Brittany! This is a must while in the region.

I like to tell you an off the beaten path chocolates to marvel your senses and once again proves that France is a movable feast! Let me tell you a bit about the Châtillon chocolates of Pleyben in the Finistére dept 29 of my beautiful Bretagne.

pleyben

However, another marvel to come here is the maître chocolatier Michel Chatillon. He has his production, making, tastings and presentation at the same spot right across diagonally from the parish Calvary ensemble. This is chocolate, fruit pate, candies, cider, and gifts but chocolates and especially the Florentins are to come here for it. The official site is here: Official Châtillon chocolat of Pleyben

pleyben

The chocolate Châtillon continue a long tradition. It was in Switzerland that the owner went  in for a couple years , he perfected himself in the knowledge of chocolate and the artistic side of the trade at a school in Basel. After these years in Switzerland and eager to fly on his own, Michel Chatillon returns to Brittany and settles in Brest in 1965 without a penny in his pocket. After successfully repaying his first loans, he opened several stores between Brest and Quimper. In 1992, Michel Chatillon decided to abandon Brest to join Pleyben, Finistére dept 29. Already present in Japan, Belgium, Canada, New Zealand, England or Denmark, the chocolate Chatillon does not want to stop there. Just a step away from the extraordinary parish enclosure of Pleyben, with an entry which must not exceed 100 meters of width, wedged between two houses, the company Châtillon does not play the grandeur, it is clear. His delicious Florentins is the flagship product, exclusive, invented by Michel Châtillon himself. This delicious almond cakes melted in chocolate-covered caramel is divine,indeed. Our favorites we died for it. Try it!!!

pleyben

A bit of a tour of Châtillon chocolats!

Upon entering and while the audience contemplates the work, an audio tape explains the making. The steps are clearly numbered in the visit. The viewer is engrossed in the work of the pastry-cook, who stuffs the stepped plates on trolleys slid into a kiln larger than himself. Once this short but instructive visit is over, the group heads to a small room where the story of Châtillon chocolate will be projected. Exotic images of cocoa production in Africa. Industrial with container shipping. Images on the controls at the start and the finish, guaranteeing the quality of the cocoa bean. Transformation in chocolate, passage in the machines of the Châtillon chocolate factory, explanations on the white, black, milk chocolate. In short, you learn, you travel, and necessarily, you salivate of the display. It’s time to go back to the shop before leaving to take home some amazing chocolates especially the Florentins!!

pleyben

The Finistére tourist office here: Tourist office of Finistere dept 29 on the Chatillon chocolats in French

There you go if you like gourmet foods candies, sugar covered assortments, cider, miel and especially chocolates than this place is for you; simply delicious and next to a wonder of our times the  Calvary of Pleyben(see my post on it). Enjoy the Châtillon chocolates at Pleyben!

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

 

 

August 8, 2019

Some news from Spain LXXXIII

And as time is approaching to my new annual visit to my beloved Spain, I like to tell you in this post some activities in August!! Yes the month where all go to the beach so they tell you , but many stay behind and lots of goodies I take advantage of again this year

Here are some goodies for August 2019 and I will be in some ::)

The terraces of the Edificio Nouvel building of the Reina Sofía Museum host this summer a film cycle that this year is dedicated to ways of thinking and feeling the city from the neighborhoods. Recovering a popular and transversal cinema, which also includes great milestones of fiction, recent documentaries or historical authors of the  cinema. Neighborhood lives, Cinema and the right to the city seeks to think about neighborhood lives and how they produce, resist and reinvent urban space. August 16 and 17 – La vida en los márgenes , August 24 and 25 – Distopías urbanas,  August 30 and 31  – Fiesta y diferencia. Resistencias lúdicas. At the museum in  Calle Santa Isabel, 52  Terrazas Edificio Nouvel. Metro Estación del Arte (old name Atocha) line 1 , Lavapiés  line 3 .More info here: Reina Sofia Museum summer cinema

The Golden Age is a recurring time for many festivals in Spain, and how could it be less, this summer in Madrid will once again enjoy the Fiesta Corral Cervantes, an event with fun-festive activities suitable for all public. This is already the third edition of this festival of classical theater in the heart of the city, and will feature an extension of the 42nd International Festival of Classical Theater of Almagro. Among the wide theatrical offer that you will find, there are popular works such as El buscón de Francisco de Quevedo, El Perro del Hortelano and La dama boba de Lope de Vega, The medical love of Tirso de Molina, The wise women of Molière, or El lazarillo de Tormes accompanied by flamenco guitar that return after the success of the second edition of the Festival. The dance will also be present in the Saturday night sessions with the show Cervantes dances, while the nights of Thursdays and Fridays are reserved for music with the Golden Music cycle at the Corral. Also, on Friday and Saturday mornings Teatro Corral Cervantes will host the proposals of the different formations that work in the Retiro neighborhood.  At Calle Claudio Moyano, s / n. nearest Metro Atocha Renfe  and Estacion del Arte (old Atocha) line 1. Adults: From € 12.90 (except La lengua en pedazos) Family shows: From € 7.90 at corralcervantes.com . More info here: Official Corral Cervantes

The Patio Sur (south patio)  of the Conde Duque building recovers its traditional cycle of outdoor summer cinema with an extensive program of films designed for all audiences. Both lovers of the original version to families with children will have an appointment to spend the summer in the city. Program highlights; Monday, August 12: Qué he hecho yo para merecer esto ; Tuesday August 13: Mujeres al borde de un ataque de nervios; Wednesday August 14  La ley del deseo ; Thursday August 15 : Todo sobre mi madre; Friday August 16 : SING-ALONG® The Rocky Horror Picture Show; Saturday August 17 : SING-ALONG® La llamada; Monday August 19 : La favorita (V.O.S.); Tuesday August 20: Metrópolis; Wednesday August 21: Cómo entrenar a tu dragón 3;  Thursday August 22: Fahrenheit 11/9; Friday August 23: Yesterday ;Saturday August 24 : SING-ALONG® Lo mejor del pop español; Monday August 26 : El cuento de las comadrejas; Tuesday August 27  El ángel;  Wednesday August 28 : Mi vecino Totoro; Thursday August 29  Un día más con vida; Friday August 30 : Mula;  and  Saturday August 31 : SING-ALONG® Lo mejor del pop español.  All this at  Calle Conde Duque, 11.metro Noviciado lines 2, 3 and 10 , Plaza de España  line 2, 3 and 10, San Bernardo  lines 2 and 4, Ventura Rodríguez  line 3. General admission: € 6, Live shows: € 9 , Wednesday (spectator day): € 3. More info here: Official Conde Duque summer cinema

For the sixth consecutive year, the CentroCentro Galeria de Cristal (crystal gallery) once again hosts one of the most anticipated cinematographic, leisure and art offers of the season, with the best national and international cinema, great classics, recent premieres, accompanied by a great gastronomic variety and a program of activities that will complement the projections. The tribute that is paid to the mythical Hollywood studio 20th Century Fox, in August and September you can see the following titles: Two on the road, All that jazz, The Young Frankenstein, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, The Glass Jungle, Eduardo Manostijeras, The Fight Club and Moulin Rouge! Other essential classic titles, belonging to the Sunday Classics, will be: To be or not to be, The Twilight of the Gods, Singing in the rain, With skirts and the crazy, and Breakfast with diamonds. This at Calle de Montalbán, 1. Metron Banco de Espana line 2 . General admission: € 6, Entrance with consumption: € 12 More info here: CentroCentro Cibeles de Cinema

With the arrival of summer the Outdoor Film Festival, FESCINAL, returns to the city in its 35th edition with a selection of films of all genres and for all types of audiences. Every day, two to four films will be screened between the two screens that make up the double program, being able to choose the film that most appeals and in continuous session. You can enjoy and laugh with classics like El Gordo and El Flaco; dance with West Side Story; being a boy or girl once again with The Lion King, Dumbo, The Lego movie 2 or Aladdin; practice languages ​​with the VOS (original subtitled version) of Sunset, The sisters brothers, Au bout des doigts or Werk onhe author; dream of the X-Men super powers: Dark Phoenix or Captain Marvel; or give it all with the music of Bohemian Rhapsody. All this at Avenida de Valladolid, 4 in the Parque de la Bombilla; Metro Principe Pio lines 6, 10 and Radial  and I’ll be with bus 46!!!! On Friday, Saturday and the eve of holidays: € 6 Sunday to Thursday, except Wednesday: € 5, Wednesday (spectator’s day): € 4, Ticket 10 tickets: € 45, Free: children up to 4 years. More info here:   Official Fescinal in August

I have previously told this but it will continue in August 2019 as all year celebration. The Prado National Museum celebrates its Bicentennial in 2019 and to commemorate it, throughout the year, a special program has been planned that hosts numerous exhibitions and activities related to the museum. A celebration where you will travel and reflect on your history but with your eyes on the future. The presentation:  Prado Museum 1819-2019. A place of memory (Nov 19, 2018 – Mar 10, 2019). A chronological tour, articulated in eight stages, by the history of the museum with the evolution of the institution and how it has been a reflection of the historical evolution of Spain. You know it  Paseo del Prado, s / n.Metro Banco de Espana line 2 or Estacion del Arte line 1 (old Atocha). More info here: Prado museum bicentennial events

On October 17, 1919, a pioneer means of transport was inaugurated in Madrid, such as the Metro! Now 100 years later, with 294 km of network and about to inaugurate its station number 302, the metro has become the fastest, most economical and sustainable way to get around the city, with 626 million travelers a year. Multiple exhibitions such as Historic Trains, and various activities such as the Centennial Race, make up the proposals that Metro carries out for this year of celebration. More info in a beautiful site here: Metro de Madrid Bicentennial

The Community of Madrid commemorates the Year Lorca 2019, dedicated to the universal poet, in the centenary of his arrival in Madrid. Great news will see Federico Garcia Lorca to me the best poet of Spain. A year of art and culture dedicated to the memory of the poet from Granada. There will be numerous conferences, plays, concerts, exhibitions and various cultural activities around the figure of Lorca and this past century. The Sabatini Auditorium, the Spanish Theater, the Historical Auditorium of the Complutense University, the Student Residence, the Royal Post Office and the Theaters of the Canal will witness this International Congress. More info in Spanish here: Comunidad de Madrid on the year of Lorca

Something unique in Royal countries and my Spain is one gladly.  Every Wednesday and Saturday  10-12h you can enjoy at the Puerta del Principe (Prince’s Gate)  of the Palacio Real (royal palace)  the changing of the guard of the Royal Guard. Free entrance.  Again the king does not live here and it is not his property, belonging to the national monument heritage of Spain. The palace sentries two on foot and two on horseback  dressed in gala uniforms – blue, white and red – similar to those used by the Spanish army in the time of king Alfonso XIII, perform a relay every 30 minutes, accompanied by an orphan (piccolo of very acute tone used in the military bands) and a drum that interprets military marches, following the orders and regulatory voices. In addition, every 10 minutes and not coinciding with the relay of the sentinels on foot, the sentinels on horseback move in front of the façade of the palace. You know it a Calle Bailén, s / n Metro Opera lines 2,5 and radial, Plaza de España  lines 2,3 and 10. More info in Spanish official Royal Guards site here: Royal Guard official site on the changing of the guard in Spanish

Claiming culture in every corner of the city, the vitality of public spaces and the possibility that all citizens can participate in the summer cultural events. Veranos de la Villa,  (summers in the city) the summer festival organized by the Madrid City Council, picks up the essence of its three previous summers and presents a new and extensive edition that will expand numerous cultural proposals throughout the city until next September 1. The program offers in 2019,  41 artistic events in 35 different spaces and includes music, dance, theater, circus, zarzuela, cabaret, performance, cinema, astronomy, fashion, fireworks and urban sports, including the hybrids and crosses from which it is enriched The current creation. 90% free access, only 10% of activities are paid but with a maximum price of 15 euros.  More info here in Spanish: Veranos de la Villa of Madrid

Something unique to finish and very Spanish.  An exhibition that links the creation of Cristóbal Balenciaga, the most admired and influential Spanish fashion designer of all time, with the tradition of Spanish painting between the 16C and 20C. Thyssen Museum, Paseo del Prado, 8. Metro Banco de Espana line 2. General admission: € 12. More info here: Thyssen museum on Balenciaga

And there you plenty to see in my Madrid. Hope you can enjoy it as much as I, catch one of this activities this year or next. Enjoy Madrid in Summer!

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

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