Category Archives: Where to Stay

House Hunt Provence: Day 1 – Part 2

 The second house we visit is a traditional Chateau. It lies just a 5 minute walk outside a typical provencal village. We arrive early enough to enjoy a round of cafe cremes at a bistro in the village square. The square is shaded by towering plane trees and enveloped by shops, including a busy boulangerie, and restaurants.… Read More »

House Hunt Provence: Day 1-Part 1

 We meet our UK born real estate agent at a designated rendez vous near the village of Lorgues at 9 AM on another blue sky, gentle breeze provencal day. He is a buyer’s agent and is representing us, not the sellers. He formerly was an executive for an international business and now has “retired” to a nearby… Read More »

House Hunt Provence 6: The Mas

 France is the bread basket of Europe, marked by fertile farms, vineyards and olive groves. Most of the country is rural. The provencal countryside is dotted by small farms and their equally small farmhouses. These tiny stone houses are known as a Mas. A Mas may date back to the 16th or 17th century. The… Read More »

House Hunt Provence 5: The Traditional Chateau

 Our reaction to this type of house is “we are definitely in France.” Ranked on curb appeal alone, it is the overwhelming winner. The typical chateau is 3 or 4 floors. After passing through ornate iron gates supported by stone columns, the white pebble drive approaches the center front door, often circling around a water… Read More »

House Hunt Provence 4: 3 House Types

 We’ve spent many hours researching French Immobilier websites,  brochures and window displays.  We’ve settled on 3 distinct types of houses to visit: the modern villa, the traditional Chateau and the old “mas” (farmhouse).  Each has pluses and minuses and each could satisfy much on our wish list. So, for the first day of our House… Read More »

House Hunt Provence 3: The Wish List

 With our preferred region selected (the area surrounding Cotingnac in Provence), we can also identify the key items on our wish list. We understand that  compromises may be necessary, but at least we can start with our dream specifications. The house should be near, and not in, a village. We prefer privacy and quiet, as well… Read More »

House Hunt Provence 2: Cotingnac, Le Petite St. Tropez

 So many options. A bohemian arrondisement in Paris. A Snow White forest in the Perigord. Peter Mayle’s Menerbes. “A Good Year’s” Bonnieux. Bridgit Bardot’s St. Tropez. We select the region surrounding the picturesque provençal village of Cotingac, also known as “Le Petite St. Tropez.” It lies below imposing cliffs and has a “centre ville” plaza… Read More »

House Hunt Provence 1: To our future well being!

 We’ve decided to embark on buying a second, and perhaps someday permanent, home in France. We’ve settled on a region, found an English speaking agent, made our wish list and know our requirements. We’re committed. We’ve looked casually over the past decade and were tempted by a few properties. Yet, we hadn’t really done our… Read More »

Hotel Byblos – Pools, Peacocks & Swanky Sips

 It is shadow playtime at the Byblos Hotel this time of year in St. Tropez. The “dog days of summer” are upon us, but at the Byblos it is more like the “peacock days!” In the heart of the village below the Citadel tree-line, yet near the white beaches of Pampelonne, rises up the Hotel… Read More »

A Louer ou A Vendre

 To rent or to buy, that is the question. We’ve progressed from hotel to flat to house, all rented. Now we are considering buying. We have a second home back in the states. We haven’t been there in 2 years. Our kids use it at most 3 or 4 weekends a year. The last year that… Read More »