Posts tagged with "garden"

AUTUMN EVENTS AT THE LOIRE VALLEY

Autumn is the perfect time of year to explore the Loire Valley, when the wine harvest is at its peak and the vibrant foliage surrounding the region’s famous chateaux is at its best. Along with the region’s current celebrations of the 500th Anniversary of the French Renaissance, a number of chateaux throughout the Loire Valley will also be hosting festive seasonal events in honor of the fall season. Below is a selection of some of the top autumnal events taking place this year:

Fall Events at Chateau-hotel de la Bourdaisière

In the fall, tomatoes and dahlias are the stars at Chateau-hotel de la Bourdaisière. Until October, the gardens are lit up by over 5,000 different types of dahlia bulbs. The chateau is also famous for its National Tomato Conservatory, boasting more than 650 varieties of tomatoes, which earned its owner the nickname of “the Gardener Prince.” The chateau’s annual Tomato Festival takes places from September 7-8 this year, celebrating the incredible number of tomatoes grown on the estate. Later in the fall, the chateau will host the “Festival of the Forest & Wood” from October 19-20, which will include wood-sculpting workshops and more for the whole family. Guests can also stay overnight in one of the chateau’s 29 rooms and apartments.

 

Pumpkin Feast & Autumn Festival at Chateau du Rivau

On September 8, the fairy-tale inspired Chateau du Rivau will host a Pumpkin Feast at which guests can revel in the chateau’s pumpkin gardens, sample pumpkin dishes, see incredible pumpkin sculptures, and enjoy entertainment by jugglers, acrobats, magicians and more. On October 26 and 27, the chateau will host an Autumn Festival, featuring a display of hundreds of stunning chrysanthemum flowers. Guests can now stay overnight in one of the chateau’s seven newly opened guest rooms.

Vegetable Garden Days at Chateau du Villandry

The Chateau du Villandry is thought of as a real gem of the Renaissance age thanks to its famous gardens with a distinctly French charm. On September 28 and 29, visitors can celebrate the local produce and plants during the chateau’s Vegetable Garden Days, which include regional products and local crafts. Even more, From September 14 through November 11 guests can view an exhibit of nature-inspired paintings by Marie-Laurence Gaudrat.

Autumn Splendors at the Regional Domain of Chaumont-sur-Loire

Taking place from October 19 to November 23, The Autumn Splendors festival celebrates the fall season with incredible flower arrangements, collections of colorful squash, displays of seasonal vegetables and more. This is also the last opportunity for travelers to visit the International Garden Festival for the year.

Autumn Festival at Chateau du Cheverny

The second edition of Chateau du Cheverny’s Autumn Festival takes place on November 16 and 17, during which the Orangery will transform into a Magical Forest. Guests will be transported to an autumnal wonderland, including fall colors and crafts, as well as a soup-tasting bar, and an exhibition of sculptures and paintings. Also offered will be horse-drawn carriage rides and a pop-up miniature farm for kids. Even more, from October 18 through November 30, more than 2,500 chrysanthemums will be in bloom in the gardens.

RENAISSANCE EVENTS

Below are some of the many ongoing events happening in the Loire Valley this year in honor of the 500th Anniversary of the French Renaissance that shouldn’t be missed:

• Renaissance Sound and Light Show in Tours (until September 7)

• A spectacular sound and light show will feature the anniversary of the French Renaissance.

• Folies Mélodiques Exhibit at Chateau de Bouges (until September 29)

• Guests can visit Cécile Le Talec’s sculpture garden, which aims to represent 18th-century livestock farming through her artworks as well as recorded sounds that play throughout the exhibit.

• Dance to the Renaissance at Chateau de Langeais (until September 30)

• During the entire month of September, the Château de Langeais invites guests to explore 16th-century music and dance inside the castle’s two ‘Renaissance Rooms.’

• Rinascenza Exhibit at Chateau du Chateaudun (until October 13) 

• An exceptional photography exhibit from French visual artist Sabine Pigalle, which brings together 30 photographs on display throughout the castle, inspired by works from the Renaissance and more. 

• The Extended Concert at Noirlac Abbey (until October 15)
A unique virtual sound installation highlighting the relationship between space and sound, in which listeners will gently drift through a multi-sensory musical concert experience.

The Milestone Hotel And Residences Launches “Practically Perfect” Stay

The award-winning five-star Milestone Hotel & Residences, a quintessentially British mansion-hotel located opposite Kensington Palace and Gardens, is offering a “Practically Perfect” hotel stay starting from November 1, 2018. This suitably British experience includes an overnight stay in supreme luxury, whether in a room or suite, full English breakfast for two and a number of Mary Poppins-inspired activities.

Upon arrival, young guests will be given a “silver” chocolate tuppence which they can exchange for a bird-feeding kit from The Milestone’s concierge team. During their stay in the heart of Kensington, children can use the kit to feed the ducks in Hyde Park located nearby. If the weather is right, guests can also opt to fly a kite “up to the highest height!” in the Italian Garden at Kensington Gardens. Children can even take their brand-new kite home with them priced at £40 (approx. US$52).

The Milestone’s signature “Most Delightful Way” mocktail

The special hotel stay also includes a Spoonful of Sugar Afternoon Tea for two – a newly introduced afternoon tea concept created by the hotel’s kitchen team that captures the fun and frivolity of the story with a variety of cleverly themed pastries. Menu items include a chocolate pastry in the shape of Mary Poppins’ iconic floral hat, a black “chimney sweeps” macaron, a cupcake served with a chocolate spoon(ful of sugar) and many other sweet treats. A children’s version of the afternoon tea also includes kite-shaped biscuits covered in cherry ganache. Guests can taste The Milestone’s new Little Nip from Every Sip cocktail with their afternoon tea, made with muddled raspberries, peach liqueur, peach purée, orange juice and ginger ale, while little guests can enjoy the mocktail version called the …Most Delightful Way, served in a special medicine bottle.

Continuing with the theme of the Mary Poppins story, guests will also receive a red carnation buttonhole, just like Mr. Banks wore on his lapel in the original Disney film. Guests may notice that all Milestone hotel staff also pin a red carnation to their lapels, a signature of the Red Carnation Hotel Collection, of which The Milestone Hotel is a member.

The “Practically Perfect” hotel stay is valid from November 1, 2018 until January 31, 2019, and starts at £540 (approx. US$696) per night, based on two people sharing a Classic Double Room. Walk-in guests can also enjoy the Spoonful of Sugar Afternoon Tea in the hotel’s Park Lounge between November 1, 2018 and January 31, 2019 and is priced at £50 (approx. US$64) per person. The children’s version of the afternoon tea is priced at £25 (approx. US$32) per child under 12. Afternoon Tea is served daily at 1pm, 3pm and 5pm.

Suisun Valley, Fairfield

Story by Susan Hiland provided by Daily Republic

Suisun Valley greeted a group of out-of-town travel writers with a bounty of beauty, food and wine over the weekend.

They toured just about every winery, olive oil factory, candy-making company and barley brew-maker in the area.

This was the result of the Fairfield Conference & Visitors Bureau reaching out to Geiger & Associates, which has put together these travel tours for several communities including Lodi.

“This is the first time we have done something like this,” said Anand Patel, president/CEO of Visit Fairfield. “The goal was to get people thinking about Fairfield and Suisun Valley.”

He said he hoped that the travel writers would see the beauty of the valley and share that with their readers. The writers came from Portland, Oregon, Southern California, Northern California and even Quebec, Canada.

“We hope people read their articles and get interested in the valley,” he said.

The group of writers included Susan G. Hauser, Elyse Glickman, Vaughn Lowery, Wendy van Diver, Cortney Erndt, Carla Waldemar, Ruksana Hussain, Wendy Lemlin, Janet Boileau and Robin Raven.

The writers arrived Thursday and enjoyed an afternoon at Jelly Belly Candy Co., where they took the tour, sampled sweet treats and shopped.

“Every single stop we hope they learn something new,” Patel said.

Boileau, a writer and publisher for Taste and Travel International Magazine, which is a culinary publication with 20,000 subscribers across Canada, had no idea about Suisun Valley.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” she said. “But this is a very impressive part of the wine country.”

She was enjoying how relaxing the area was with some wine from Suisun Valley Wine Co-op along Pleasants Valley Road. The stop offered an opportunity for everyone to sample a variety of wines from the area in one place.

Lowery is the president of 360 Magazine, a lifestyle magazine that goes out to thousands of subscribers from Los Angeles to Japan.

“Anyone visiting here needs to stop at Il Fiorello Olive Oil Co.,” he said. “It was a sensory overload.”

They sampled a meal with each of the foods having been created using produce from the company’s garden.

“This is a great cross of Napa and Sonoma,” Lowery said. “It’s a place you can take time out and is very drivable.”

He said he was envisioning himself returning with a convertible, rolling the top down and just cruising through the back roads as a vacation.

“We tasted the grapes at Wooden Valley Winery. They were so sweet, I thought no way that was real,” he said.

“Fairfield is just a great town for a great road trip,” he said.

Royal Wedding Bouquet

Prince Harry played a huge role in preparing for Meghan Markle’s bouquet as he had picked some of the flowers himself from their private garden at Kensington Palace. The bouquet was designed by florist Philippa Craddock. What’s really sweet is that Prince Harry had included some of Princess Diana’s favorite flowers. Forget-Me-Nots were chosen by the couple to be included as a part of their wedding in the loving memory of Princess Diana. Other flowers that were seen in the bouquet were sweet peas, lily of the valley, astilbe, jasmine, astrantia, and myrtle (a royal tradition). The flowers were delicately bound together by a raw silk ribbon.

Dark Sky Movement

Once monthly from May through October Holiday River Expeditions (http://www.bikeraft.com/) shares the mystery and romance of the Dark Sky with star-struck guests who are participating in one of this veteran travel company’s 2018 Stargazing adventures.

“It’s easy to get excited about this special trip series. Seeing how it has deepened our guests’ understanding and our guides’ awareness of the night sky is reason enough to offer these trips,” said Lauren Wood, Holiday Trip Director. “The inexplicable boundlessness you feel staring up at the stars is just a bonus.”

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La Divine Comédie

Tracy Paul & Company Inc. launches La Divine Comédie, the most exclusive French property in the heart of Avignon.

 

 

Tracy Paul & Company Inc. is proud to announce its representation of La Divine Comédie, an exquisite luxury property located in the most treasured setting within Southern France. The hotel resort La Divine Comédie is a 19th century mansion, comprised of 5 spectacular suites. Each suite has it’s own unique style, inspired by Gilles Jauffret the renowned French interior designer as well as one of the properties owners. He has meticulously thought of every detail throughout the entire compound.

 

There are some places which seem to have an eternal soul, transmitted through the ages, from one occupier to another. Certain individuals have the gift of giving free rein to the spirit present within these walls, and of respecting the building’s unique character. Listening to the echoes of its past and reading the lines of its own story. This is true of the lucky occupiers of La Divine Comédie, who have devoted themselves, heart and soul, to breathing life into one of Avignon’s most particular private residences, using their creative talents and impeccable artistic taste to bring out the very best in every inch of the 2,600 m2 space.

 

 

The grounds of the hotel contain a spa & wellness center as well as a large outdoor swimming pool. The hotel also has the largest private garden directly centered in the middle of Avignon, with over 100 varieties of trees and plants. The owners Amaury and Gilles wanted to create a true haven of calm and tranquility in the heart of the city. Yet the hotel is just footsteps away from the Pope’s Palace, restaurants, shopping and all the other attractions offered in one of France’s most historic romantic cities. 

 

La Divine Comédie is, first and foremost, a garden to be found behind high walls. Catch your first glimpse from the outside as the gentle breeze stirs the leaves of the ancient plane trees, hinting at this oasis of calm right in the city center. The light and airy house can be seen through the open gate, inviting and casting a spell over its visitors, who can all too easily fall in love with its mysterious, mesmerizing charm. The garden and the house come together to tell an enchanting, enticing tale of discovery and pleasure. Pass through the open doors to enjoy the hedonistic pleasures of La Divine Comédie, a dreamlike, but very real, paradise.


THE ANATOLE SUITE

The Anatole suite tells the tale of Uncle Anatole, a seasoned traveller recently returned from abroad, bringing a whole collection of souvenirs. Two magnificent, antique model boats show his love for the sea.

Anatole also collects orientalist paintings, particularly Cortès and Pascal; the mirrors, screen and the 18th Century canopy over the bed are other gems brought back from his travels. The antechamber is home to a desk, perfect for planning the next trip.

Visitors to the suite are greeted by a portrait of Anatole in his younger years.

Suite size : 50 m2

 

THE APHRODITE SUITE

The Aphrodite suite features a spectacular round bed, surrounded by soft, diaphanous draped voile, the perfect place to relax in privacy. The suite is decorated in soothing greys and blues, reflecting the soft tones of an 18th Century Vernet-style screen. A number of extremely fine orientalist paintings add to the overall effect.

The suite opens out onto a private terrace of 30m2, with spectacular views on the garden. Visitors are welcome to take their breakfast or to enjoy an aperitif on the terrace. The suite also features a second, smaller room.

Suite size : 50 m2

 

THE CONSUL SUITE

The Consul suite is decorated in the style of the Napoleonic period, when the fashion was for all things exotic. A collection of lithographs of the Bosphorus in the antechamber sits alongside a superb collection of antique trunks. The typical furniture, notably the armchairs – replicas of the throne of Tutankhamun – is set off by a palate of warm cumin, black and brown tones.

The orientalist spirit can also be seen in a series of engravings representing Napoleon’s first trip to Egypt, reflecting the fashion for exotic travel. The suite is oriented west, offering a glimpse of the Papal Palace from the windows.

Suite size: 50 m2

 

THE NAPLES SUITE

The Naples suite is home to a stunning collection of gouache paintings of Mt Vesuvius erupting. The artworks are set off by the matte grey walls of the main room. Three huge, south-facing windows look out over the garden. Majestic bed hangings, suspended from an 18th Century canopy, sit alongside a modern headboard designed by Gilles Jauffret. The simple, clean lines of the light fixtures, imported from Morocco, add a graphic touch to the décor.

Suite size: 50 m2

 

THE VENICE SUITE

The Venice suite features a collection of over 40 18th– and 19th-Century oil paintings of the Italian city, set against a backdrop of blue and grey tones.

Enjoy the beauties of Venice without leaving Provence! Much of Avignon’s palatial architecture is inspired by Italian art, as Papal legates commissioned their favorite artists to work on their residences in the city.

The suite also features a 1920s Iris chandelier and 1970s shell chairs, the perfect place to enjoy some of our collection of works on Venice.

Suite size : 50 m2