Sunday, June 23, 2013

Pope's Palace Exhibition 2013 : "Les Papesses en Avignon"

The pope's Palace who is getting ready for the Avignon Theatre Festival just opened its new amazing exhibition Les Papesses en Avignon.
The "Papesses" are 7 women artists, including the well know sculptor Camille Claudel and works are presented in the stunning Popes" Palace and the Museum of the Collection Lambert.

I can't describe what I felt when starring at those amazing bronze of Camille Claudel and some other works I loved or I didnt really understand. But surely I saw the Popes' Palace through a new lense and enjoyed myself a lot.

I can only show some pictures of what I had the chance to chance and encourage you to spend a good couple of hours to discovery this wonderful exhibition.

The exhibition runs until Nov 11th, 2013
More details here 

On July 4th I am invited to the opening of the Rodin exhibition in Arles and that promise to be another interesting one. Will try not to forget my camera....

The palace getting ready for the Avignon Theatre Festival

L'age mur - Camille Claudel Circa 1902

L'implorante - Camille Claudel 1894

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Clients Feed back

My clients asked me where they could add there comments about the day(s) they spent with me...
So here is their space.

If you click on "comments" at the end of this message, you'll get to read what can be said about me.

And here are some other comments of 2013.

Philippe was an essential resource and guide for my recent fabulous trip to Provence (my first), which took place in May! He was recommended by Julie of It was clear that Philippe could find the best of whatever interested us. Whether it was going to a chocolatier or an olive oil specialist in St. Remy de Provence, the large Sunday antique market in Isle-sur-la-Sorgue or the sweet, rural Friday market of Eygalieres, Philippe knew how to create a memorable experience. Knowing my interest in painting, he included Roussillon on our tour of the Luberon where I discovered the magic of its beautiful  pigments. His guidance was the epitome of a personalized tour. My experience with Philippe was the perfect introduction to one of the most beautiful areas in France. I look forward to returning...  
Diane, New York, NY
Greetings Philippe,

Just wanted to drop you a short note to let you know that we have arrived safely home.  Thanks again for a great week and being so tolerant and responsive to our many requests.  Your knowledge and hard work made for a pleasant and memorable experience. 

Thanks again!

John & Pat USA
Bonsoir Philippe,

Sorry for my delayed response. I was travelling all day yesterday and now back at work Tuesday morning in Seattle. 

I had such a wonderful time touring the region with you. I also felt like I was touring around with a good friend!  It was all the better with your perfect English/French along with the wonderful historical and cultural information you shared about the region. I absolutely enjoyed it all. 

I have to say my favorite place was St. Remy; so much history, character, specialty shops with stories to tell, and the beautiful surrounding countryside. I did very much enjoy the market and character of L'Isle sur la Sorgue, the impressive stature of Les Baux and the many places in between. They all came very much to life for me with your thoughtful narrations.

Thank you very much for the kind and thoughtful gift of Hermes eau d'orange perfume. I have a feeling I will be back in Provence again - hopefully with my whole family. When the time is near, I look forward to connecting again with you and Julie, too.

With warmest regards from Seattle,

Linda S

Hi Philippe:

We enjoyed our time with you immensely.  Thank you for sharing your knowledge of art, architecture, history, culture, food, etc.  We had great fun!  Mr. Talkative Goat and his menagerie were fantastic.  Thanks for letting us know the name of his illegal fish.  Our other favorites were Glanum, St. Paul-de-Mausole, the aqueduct, other ruins, the beach, and the lunch spots.  Thanks also for the advice on Le Luberon, Pont du Gard, and St. Rémy.

Please let us know if you are ever near Indianapolis.  We would do our best to show you the best of our region.  The wine is crap but the beer is good and the variety and quality of food is great.

See you next time!
Tony and Susan


Saturday, June 8, 2013

A day in Avignon wine country

When one think of Avignon wine, the first one which springs in mind is Châteauneuf du Pape.

However, there are numerous other wines, some more famous than the other but a lot to discover in a lovely surrounding (where you can mix villages and winery visits) just north of Avignon.

Since it is father's day and I shall go visiting my Parents soon, I decided, yesterday, to go and get some of dad's favorite wine and "reportage" for you.

I started my trip with Beaumes de Venise (about 45mn drive from St Remy), mostly known for its sweet muscat wine. When one say "Voulez-vous un verre de Beaumes de Venise", they will refer to the muscat one (without mentioning muscat).
Served for aperitif or dessert, I particurlarly like it.
My favorite is Domaine de la Pigeade where a bottle of Beaumes is at 12.30 €.
My second favorite is Domaine de Durban. The road is stunning and the views from there are spectacular. If you think you're lost while driving, don't turn around, the road takes longer than you might expect but your reward is at the end of the trail. (botlle of Beaumes at 10.50€)

The village also is a nice stop. Don't expect fancy shops and labels but tiny street and locations for great pictures and, of course, café.....

Beaumes de Venise

Domaine la Pigeade entrance

Then I head on to Vacqueyras, just a few miles away.
Vacqueyras is one of our upmarket wine. Located next to Gigondas, the Vacqueyras wine is, to my humble taste, nearly as good as the more famous Gigondas wine, with a 20% price difference.
My dad has been buying his wine from Domaine La Garrigue for the past 50 years so that's were I go. Really tricky to find, but the road will take you right into the vineyard. Not really a place to visit but more to buy local, made with passion wine and buy at the property. The cellar is certainly not the highlight of the place.
Vacqueyras however might not be my favorite stop but still, there are a couple of Café/restaurant I would like to try. The village always sounds quiet, which, during the season is nice...

The vineyard by the cemetery....

Domaine la Garrigue

And, since I was in Vacqueyras, I had to go to that sweet little perched up Village of Gigondas.
The tiny village is worth a visit just for the beauty of the place.
Wine lovers  won't be disapointed when popping into the Caveau du Gigondas. Here you'll be able to sample any of the wine produced under the Gigondas AOC (Appelation d'Origine Controlée). A nice way to journey in Wine.
Gigondas also hosts the fancy restaurant L'oustallet located on the main square. Le Caveau des gourmets (at the bottom of the stairs on the right of the car park when looking at the valley) proposes a fun wine tasting while lunching. A 1/2 glass of different local wine is served with every courses. Courses are served in small portion in verinne. Quiet a nice experience and you get to try the whole palette of the wine Gigondas has to offer.

La Maison du Gigondas with ALL the gigondas wines.

Restaurant l'Oustallet in Gigondas

Restaurant le Caveau des Gourmets in Gigondas

Gigonds tiny street

Pizza place in Gigondas, tucked in the village

Refill your bottle with drinkable Gigondas Water

Gigondas from the Valley, Montmirail Laces behind

And to finish my day, it would have been such a miss not to go to Seguret, one of the nicest perched village in the region.
Park your car in one of the free car park, walk up 100m, pass the 14th century gate and travel in time in this quaint little village where you'll find only a couple of shops, a Glacier bar by the central fountain, a couple of Art Gallery and a view from the church square located on top on the village....

Just love it.....
The quaint perched up village of Seguret

The XIVth Century archway entrance to the village