19 November 2012

LE CASTELET

 

First of all, please forgive the technical difficulties I’ve been having.  It’s a combination of different things – mostly the just released Windows 8 doesn’t seem to want to work with my blogging platform, Windows Live Writer.  You would think Windows 8 would “talk” with Windows Live Writer, but no, it’s never that simple!!   On top of that, I am working on a new blog design that should go live in just a few weeks.

One other subject I would like to discuss with you is how you “read” the blog.  This topic comes up in emails to me, over and over again, so I thought I would talk with everyone about this!   Right now, there are around 17,000 subscribers who receive notifications of blog updates by email.  If you are one of those – please do NOT read the blog on your email!!!  You miss out on so much if you read the blog from your email.   It doesn’t really scroll properly and it’s just not intended to be read this way.  Plus,  you can’t leave a comment or properly enroll in contests.   The best way to read the blog if you get an email notification from Cote de Texas, is like this:

Below is a picture of what your email might look like.  When you open the email, place your cursor over the words “Cote de Texas” OR the title of the story – and click.  This will take you directly to the blog site. 

 

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Click on either the “Cote de Texas” or the title of the blog story where the red arrows are!

When you click on your email, it will take to the true blog address.   If you read the blog at the proper address, it will scroll correctly and it will  fit your computer screen.  By doing this, the pictures will be bigger, brighter and more focused.  The blog is designed to be read at www.cotedetexas.blogspot.com and not on your emails.  I get so many questions about the blog not scrolling properly or not being able to leave comments, and this is so simple to correct.   Just click on your email and you should have no more problems!! 

Please trust me on this – you will enjoy reading the blog at its proper address so much more than reading it off your email. 

OK…

On to the new story.  A reader, inspired by the pictures shown here  from France and  England, wrote me about a beautiful hotel in Provence.   She was right – it really IS beautiful!  Today, we will visit the hotel, Le Castelet.

Enjoy!!!

 

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The stone bastide sits high above the swimming pool.  Underneath the house are two large open rooms that are used for entertaining and parties. 

 

Le Castelet is an original bastide in Provence on the Cote d’Azur.   The bastide, surrounded by centuries old cypress trees, sits in the middle of an olive grove with views in all directions.   Le Castelet has been totally renovated and is quite luxurious.   There are two main buildings, two swimming pools and an outdoor spa. 

 

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The countryside of Le Castelet 

Le Castelet’s name comes from its origins as a castle.  There are stone walls of the bastide that were erected during the Roman period.  Most other parts of the bastide were built during the medieval period.   Over the years, various owners have added onto the buildings – erecting a terrace and enlarging the stables.   A round tower was built in 1841.  None of the windows match and some have the year 1863 carved into them.   The lead and copper pipes installed long ago have also been replaced.   One owner built the garage in 1946.  Many authors and movie stars have lived in the area and  the very popular actress of the  50s, Bridgett Bardot, visited Le Castelet. She almost bought it, but her mother found a less expensive property for her to purchase.  After this, a Swedish family bought the bastide and though they maintained the vineyards and the olive grove, the property was not really cared for properly.   In 1997, the Swedes sold Le Castelet to the current owners who completely renovated the property, keeping the past visible, but providing all the mod cons for its visitors.

 

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The map of Le Castelet showing its two main houses, the bastide and the guest annex.

 

Le Castelet is 30 minutes from Cannes and la Napoul/Mandelieu beaches.  There are nearby golf courses and a ski resort is just 40 minutes away.  The bastide is near two small villages Cabris and Peymeinade (walking distance).  The famous perfume town Grasse with its old picturesque town is only 10 min away. The nearby mountains are perfect for hikes, climbing and canoeing.  And you can walk along the real Route Napoleon starting close by behind the house.

 

 

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The cypress lined drive up to the bastide.

 

 

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The gate to the main bastide, with the circular tower on the right.

 

 

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The bastide and its terrace overlook the lower level with the open air rooms and swimming pool and spa (hot tub.)

 

 

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The two open air rooms below the bastide overlook the swimming pool which overlooks the vineyard. 

 

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The open air rooms can be set up for large parties or weddings, making Le  Castelet a perfect wedding destination. 

 

 

 

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The terrace off the bastide is laid with slate tiles.  The tower can be seen on the far right.

 

 

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On the terrace of the bastide, the original swimming pool is now a Zen like reflecting pool.

 

 

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The original bastide with stone walls,  light green shutters and lanterns.  Lemon trees are grown in pots.

 

 

 

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The original bastide with its tiled roof and copper gutters.

 

 

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Stone walls and tiled roofs – so French!

 

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Off the tower, wisteria grows.  Above is an open air balcony.  Since this picture was taken, the area under the balcony was enclosed with a French door.

 

 

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Atop the tower is an original metal sign signifying 1841, when the tower was erected.

 

 

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On the left side of the bastide, under the balcony is a covered dining terrace.  This section of the bastide is newer than the rest of it.

 

 

 

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The dining terrace under the balcony is perfect on cool nights because of hidden heaters!

 

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Inside the bastide is the main salon, with the stairs inside the tower that lead to the second floor.

 

 

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Looking down from the stairs at the main salon.  The floors are tiles, the walls are paneled and stone.  The ceilings have original beams.

 

 

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Beautiful Louis XVI fireplace and paneling.

 

 

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Behind the salon and past the stairs is the stone hall that leads to the kitchen.

 

 

 

 

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The kitchen in the bastide with its built in armoire.  So charming!

 

 

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At the other side,  the incredible La Cornue range and antique tiles that came from a French chateau.

 

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French Provençal table and chairs.

 

 

 

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At the top of the stairs in the round tower.

 

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The red salon and bedroom on the second floor. 

 

 

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Beautiful fireplace!

 

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The suite’s bedroom with taffeta curtains, along with taffeta lined closets.

 

 

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Another bedroom in the bastide.

 

 

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An English bathtub from the early 1900s.

 

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This bathroom has incredible marble walls and tiled shower, along with terracotta floors.

 

 

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Close up of the gorgeous faucets and tiles.

 

 

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Iris mixed with  herbs and stone walls.

 

 

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The vineyard, bordered by a row of lavender and a walkway along the stone wall.

 

 

 

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Roses line the stone walk between the bastide and the smaller guest annex.

 

 

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Up the stone stairs to the guest annex.

 

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The guest annex is set up to be completely independent of the main bastide.  Both houses can be rented at the same time.

 

 

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Another swimming pool overlooking the countryside and the vineyard.

 

 

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Stucco walls and cream shutters.  Limestone tiles.

 

 

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The main guest room in the annex.  So cute!!

 

 

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Another view of the guest suite looks out on the terrace and swimming pool.

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At the lower level of the property near the vineyard is the newly built Cabanon.   The Cabanon can be used in the winter – because it has a fireplace and heated floors. There is also an outdoor kitchen at the Cabanon for dinners.

 

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The Cabanon at night, perfect for dinner parties overlooking the vineyard. 

 

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A covered porch sits under the guest annex’s swimming pool.  The boule court is to the right.

 

 

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I can’t imagine how wonderful it would be to stay here with your extended family!!   To book Le Castelet, go HERE.

 

 

Attention:  The six winners in the Aidan Gray contest have all now been notified by /email!!  More information about the winners will be coming soon!

45 comments:

  1. Absolutely divine! The rooms, setting, views, gardens....it's paradise. I want to stay there and never leave. I hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving, Joni.
    Take care,
    Loi

    ReplyDelete
  2. I would happily sleep in the vineyard!

    Andie

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  3. I think Mister man and I need to go to France again soon! Looks like a wonderful place to stay. Thank you to your reader for turning you onto to such a beautiful place.

    Enjoy your week and Happy Thanksgiving!
    XXX
    Debra~

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  4. Beautiful building and decor! However, everyone should realize that it does not look like this right now. Those photos were taken in the late spring when wisteria and irises are in bloom. Now, the hills are chamois-colored from lack of summer rain and the vineyards are denuded of leaves. Visit California instead. From Santa Barbara to San Diego, the climate is the same as Provence. We have beautiful homes, B&Bs and hotels to rent. Save your time and money, and if you care about such things, keep your money in the U.S.

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  5. What a beautiful property! It is a vacation I can dream about. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    Happing Thanksgiving!

    Arla

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  6. Joni I would be in heaven staying here and would probably not want to leave. I see several spots to set up for painting!

    xoxo
    Karena
    Art by Karena

    ReplyDelete
  7. I read your blog using rss. This comment is about how your blog is typically formatted and how that looks to me. I would appreciate a link to the entire article close to the top of the post - my rss reader only has an article link at the bottom :(

    People use all kinds of devices and software to access postings. I think you think they should all be able to match the way you see your blog on your personal equipment instead of considering implementing formats that resize for different resolutions so most users can use whatever devices they own comfortably. Those formats are harder to do, but make your site much more pleasant for its users (and let people see the content through email or on their mobile devices).

    Generally speaking, your pictures are very large and your fonts are BIG - I find that I need to have the browser window at least 1500 pixels wide. At present, the most popular resolution of the average user's entire screen is only 1366 pixels wide and that is used by only 20% of the viewers. I don't read anything at my full screen resolution of 1600 x 900. It's difficult for me to see as a page without head turning and I generally have a couple of other things open at the same time that are more important to me than any given blog post - they are work related whereas your blog is more like a guilty pleasure read in the pauses.

    Thanks for listening.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i don't understand or get rss - i have tried. i know my fonts and pictures are big, and that maybe because of my age - 58 tomorrow - but i like big. so.....i am getting a new design very soon and the font will go back to 14.

      i have no control over the email, but i wonder what you mean about a link at the top? because if you click on the title of the blog story - it IS a link. did you know that? maybe try clicking on the title.
      let me know if that works for you.

      Delete
    2. Happy Birthday, Joni! I wish you a nice day.

      Delete
    3. Joni, I subscribe but also have you as a favorite on my main computer. Your photos are so large that I can't read the caption and look at the entire photo. I know you love the details (and my eyes are going bad, too), but a little bit smaller photo would make it easier for me to read without constantly scrolling. Thanks for listening and happy thanksgiving!

      Delete
    4. I use a quick little Control and hit the hyphen sign twice. After viewing, it's a simple Control zero to get back to normal size. Happy birthday!

      Delete
    5. (original poster) I'm 55! Freakin' nearsighted tho.

      I know you like BIG. It's not wrong. If you or anyone else has a big browser window area, you should be able to see it big! I don't like things quite that big and I should be able to read the text and see the photos scaled for my surface area. More and more people primarily use their smart phones, ipads, nook readers, etc as their method of internet access and they should be able to read your site too. And people who have smaller monitors should be able to read it too without having to scroll back and forth too much or be forced to choose between reading the text and seeing the entire lovely pictures.

      Rss is meant to give you the "headlines" and a little summary of news or blog postings and if you want to, you can then pull up the entire article or post. It save me having to go check for new postings on sites I'm interested in. A better description of RSS is available from wikipedia with an example of an rss xml file. RSS may be something that is being produced by feedburner for you. I generally see the entire article instead of a summary.

      This is a picture of how your site appears to me (Click to view picture). I generally use windows that are about 800-1000 by 900 pixels. This is a direct view in a browser window. I have IE, Firefox and Opera and they all pretty much look the same way.

      Your blog is wonderful. The largeness is a minor annoyance. I wouldn't have said anything except that you're having it redone.

      Delete
  8. Sigh...a girl can dream can't she! So magical. Love the shutters for starters. Thank you for the tour and have a great Thanksgiving Joni!
    Monica

    ReplyDelete
  9. Joni, I follow you through my blog and click over from my Google Reader to your blog. But I have been having a time lately trying to leave comments. I loved your English post and now this one. You are THE BEST. I am able to leave this today. So that's an improvement.

    Always love what you do and reading your posts. They are my favorites in the land of blog!

    XO,

    Sheila

    P.S. Santa is supposed to be bringing me a new computer for Christmas and camera, too. I can't wait. It's been hard not blogging, and I have some tablescapes to share, back before my other equipment went south.;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. can't wait until christmas!!!! you must really been chomping at the bit!!! hurry Santa.

      Delete
  10. Joni! I was just in this area a few months ago, it is SO beautiful. I never wanted to leave. Thanks for sharing this amazing place with us!
    Kara Hebert

    ReplyDelete
  11. ...i wish it were not so joni...but while i always view your blog directly...it just does not scroll properly...it is quite difficult to keep it from skipping...and it simply will not load comments...your blog...both text and pictures...is wonderful...so you are worth the extra effort...but it is very frustrating at times...hope your new format will work wonders for all of us...hlessings laney

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i hope so- - the man said he was running into problems, so i hope he can fix them all. i can't wait.
      j

      Delete
  12. ...i wish it were not so joni...but while i always view your blog directly...it just does not scroll properly...it is quite difficult to keep it from skipping...and it simply will not load comments...your blog...both text and pictures...is wonderful...so you are worth the extra effort...but it is very frustrating at times...hope your new format will work wonders for all of us...hlessings laney

    ReplyDelete
  13. Don't you hate software incompatibility! But, I have to say I read your blog directly from the site and it doesn't scroll properly on the site; it is almost like it's "sticking" or "skipping" - I don't really know how to explain it. It also seems to be a relatively recent (last 3 - 4 months, maybe?) problem. Love your blog, though. As the saying goes, "when you're going through hell, keep going!" - Karen Watson (dekawatson@bellsouth.net)

    ReplyDelete
  14. Joni, I wanted to take this opportunity to say a big 'thank you' (even though I'm English and we don't really do thanksgiving) as one of the things I am most grateful for is your blog. You are so generous with the way you share your experience and knowledge. Your posts are so well thought out, articulate and thought-provoking. Your images are inspirational. Even my husband looks at some of your posts!

    We have just bought a new house, and your blog is helping solve decorating dilemmas, inspire choices and influence our look. I will send photos when we are further along. in the meantime, THANK YOU! You bring me so much joy and pleasure every week. (and I look back at your top ten design elements all the time - I love those posts).

    ReplyDelete
  15. What a beautiful place. I have got 20th wedding anniversary coming up in a few years - this has got me thinking! x Sharon PS Wishing you a very happy birthday for tomorrow. You look far younger than your years!

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  16. Happy birthday, Joni. This place is spectacular. Thanks for the virtual tour and the time to dream. Have a lovely Thanksgiving with your family.
    Best...Victoria

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hi Joni:
    I love reading your blog, but I too have had trouble viewing it without scrolling back and forth in the email form. I have the same trouble when I open your blog in Internet Explorer's browser. Today I tried opening it in Chrome and had no problem! I'll use this from now on. Perhaps this will help others.

    What a lovely place you showed us today!
    Thank you,
    Cheryl Taylor
    PS: Happy birthday!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Beautiful post. This is one I will study over and over. The gardens, the kitchen, literally everything about this
    estate is absolutely wonderful.

    Happy Birthday!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Happy Birthday I really enjoy your blog, and am very happy about this post in particular, because I didn't realize I should have been reading it on your blog instead of my email. So thanks for that!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Can't even imagine the challenges of producing your Blog, but just wanted you to know I've never had any problems at all and regularly read it from my browser, not e-mail. I use an iMAC - and occasionally run into Windows issues, but not with your Blog thank goodness! I absolutely love the larger format photos and text. Thank you for all the effort!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Those windows and doors..wonderful!!! Another great visual escape...back to cooking...someone pass the wine - please. franki

    ReplyDelete
  22. This is divine, Joni-Happy Birthday dear one. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. I love the artlessly casual look of the throws on the furniture. Somehow, when I do it, it just looks like someone has been couch surfing! Have a Happy Birthday Joni.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Happy Birthday, Joni !!
    Guess you didn't receive the emails I sent to you regarding the Herb Mears art pieces?
    Have a lovely Thanksgiving holiday with your friends and family.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Glorious images of a splendid place. To go to the first part of the post I believe you should send by email only a few lines and add "if you like to read the full story click on title or..." like many of us do already. Or insert in each post at the beginning something like "if you receive this by email and want to read etc. etc.
    Is it your Birthday? All the best to you...enjoy the day, the week, the month.
    Thanks for your extraordinary blog.
    Albarosa

    ReplyDelete
  26. It is absolutely beautiful. I noticed a lot of french homes do loose throw style slipcovers. Once you sit on them they are a mess. Three people sitting on a sofa, or three guys watching a game those slips are under your shoes!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Joni- thanks so much for explaining about the whys of going to the blogsite itself to read the post. I do love that I've subscribed- after missing too many posts , and then the drudgery of having to click on Older posts, and the LOOONG scroll back!( I will admit I do take sneak peeks at the pictures on my phone first- cause I just can't wait- but usually do enjoy so much more on the Big Screen!)
    I had written a detailed entry for the French garden House giveaway- and then it disappeared!But I did really enjoy all of those beautiful pictures, and will revisit it, as well as this post often! It's official, I have now put a trip to Provence on my bucket list! Just have got to see those fields of lavender for real!( and since I'm 66, better get on with it!)
    Hope your birthday was as wonderful as you have been to us... I so appreciate your blog and all the efforts you put into it!

    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

    Alice A

    ReplyDelete
  28. The Castlet is breathtaking! I have so much appreciation for these places and properties that you share. It must be so time consuming and frustrating to have technical difficulties when you've spent hours putting it all together and readying for your readers. I used to read your blog through my google reader but quit doing that because there wasn't enough time to scroll through all of the subscriptions. Yours is one of just a couple that I take time to read and enjoy these days!

    I wasn't sure if the casual 'slipcover' throws were a common practice for the locale, but it is a fun look...just not very liveable for a family like ours! I would savor every second spent in a place like this... What a great share for a vacation rental! Sandstone pathways and structures are always so romantic...I could get married again at this spot and live happily ever after. :)

    Thanks again for the info and images!!!

    ReplyDelete
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  31. Hi Joni, just wanted to say I love your big detailed photos, and have absolutely no trouble scrolling on my laptop.
    And I second the big "thank you" above---you are the best!
    Nancy

    ReplyDelete
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  34. Oh my, I would love to live in a place like that! And it's in England! That is even better. I have always been interested in having a vacation house in Europe to get away from our busy life, especially during the holidays, with the exception for Christmas, since we get to spend that time with the family. Do you have any pictures of English castles? I heard they are exquisite.

    ReplyDelete
  35. My computer will not show your photographs, and it also skips and doesn"t fit properly on my screen :( I do visit your site directly, not with my email. I have seen pictures of parts of your home on pinterest and wish I could see the rest.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Well, if I’m gonna move out of the country, I would probably prefer to live somewhere in Europe. Uhm, in Prague or Tuscany, maybe. :) I’ve been there before. Both are such beautiful cities and the people there are so nice; likewise, their food is really amazing! :D

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  38. I like what you said there, Erick. Well, in my case, I would love to live in Santorini, Greece! My wife and I spent our honeymoon there, and I really fell in love with the place. Just seeing the wonderful views of the Mediterranean Sea is already perfect to me. It’s very beautiful!

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