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France: An Experience for the Senses

Screen Shot 2015-05-17 at 12.01.26 PMFrance: a renowned travel destination boasting a series of unique regions, all with their own je ne sais quoi. Whether you’re sampling regional cuisine, driving up the coast, or touring the living reminders of history, France is a timeless attraction. Curious to get some inside scoop on French “must-do’s”, we did a quick Q&A with France villa specialists Anne-Marie, Jean and Steve, who talk bouillabaisse, Rose, and the thing clients always says when they come back.

Q: The one thing in France you must do in the summer is…

Jean: Shop the local markets.

Anne-Marie: Enjoy a bouillabaisse!

Steve: Have lunch al fresco in a medieval hill town—there are quite a few in Provence, St Tropez and in the Cannes/Nice area.

Editor’s Tip: Less than a thirty five minute drive from Avignon awaits the L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue market, where you can engage in a sensory experience and perhaps pick up some regional goodies such as handcrafted lavender soaps or wild boar Provençal salami.

Q: The best product to pick up at local French pharmacies is…

Jean: My favorite shampoo from Leonor Greyl.  My other favorite is the baby cream for bad sunburns.

Anne-Marie: Arnica Gel.

Steve: Locally made fragrant soaps.

Editor’s Tip: Arnica Gel is made from Arnica Montana, a mountain daisy that has natural healing effects to relieve pain. Recommended by doctors and pharmacists to be used on muscle pain and stiffness, as well as swelling from injuries.

My favorite wine or vineyard is…

Jean: Sancere.

Anne-Marie: Rosé from Domaine Ott.

Editor’s Tip: If you find yourself in the regions of Provence or Cote d’Azur, be sure to visit a vineyard and prepare yourself for fabulous wine tastings of the regional specialty, Rosé. We suggest visiting the Domaine des Trois Chênes vineyard, where you can sample wines featuring handpicked grapes.

My clients who travel to France usually say…

Steve: “Next time we are staying longer!”

One thing our specialists unanimously agree on? Air France is the ticket to travel to France (especially if you have Delta miles—they’re a partner), whether it be a direct flight to Paris out of Boston or Los Angeles, or a non-stop from JFK to Nice Cote d’Azur Airport. Not flying from a major hub? Our air department will be glad to track down the most convenient flight for you. British Airways and Virgin Atlantic also offer great (and comfy!) flights by connecting through London Heathrow.

Editor’s Tip: Direct flights from US major cities like New York or Boston to Nice can get rather pricey in the summer months. Consider flying into Paris and spending a few days in one of our rentable apartments to enjoy the culturally-rich city and then head to Nice via a non-stop flight from Air France. If you are ever unsure of where to go or how to get there, allow a WIMCO specialist to coordinate your air and hotel arrangements.

From savoring the smell of handpicked lavender, to indulging in delicate-but-rich French pâtisseries, this destination is one that captures the hearts of many. From city streets to the countryside, France may have something to offer for everyone.

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