Living With Leasebacks


The Murano

Living With Leasebacks

Parler Paris Previews…
A Weekly Community Calendar for English-Speaking Paris

Calendar #52

Wednesday, April 6, 2005
Paris, France

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Dear Parler Paris Reader,

It seems fitting that after experiencing the Venetian Carnival this past weekend, I should make a short excursion to Murano, with a stop in London on the way back to Paris. Ah, the life of a European.

Confused? Let me explain. If you read Monday’s newsletter, then you know that over the weekend Venice came to Paris in the form of a mock carnival made up of an association’s members donning more than 200 hand-made elaborate costumes, riding gondolas and boats on the canal at the Bastille. That was the first leg of my “journey.” (If you missed it, you can have a relook, especially the fab photo, by clicking on /parlerparis/issues/pparis4-4-05.html)

Monday I made a visit to Les Jardins du Marais, the hotel near the Bastille where we have held several conferences and workshops and where we will be hosting the May 20 – 22 Working and Living in France Conference. You might remember it as the “Home Plazza Bastille.”

Over the last few months, the hotel has undergone major renovation to live up to its new four-star rating. The lobby and atrium dining room now exudes a futuristic design using black marble flooring, contemporary Lucite furnishings, sheer drapes expanding the massive windows with ’70s retro globe chandeliers hung in a row over the square tables.

The transformation surprised me…until later that day, it all became clear as crystal.

The “Murano” is just “up the road” on the boulevard between rues Filles du Calvaire and Saintonge (3rd arrondissement) — not the island a short boat’s ride from Venice famous for its hand-blown crystal, but the exclusive new residence hotel that’s all the rage! I had the pleasure of a personal tour of the hotel along with Pascal Fonquernie, Webmaster of, a new up-and-coming “portal” for Le Marais. (I will soon be contributing to a monthly [free] newsletter for — to subscribe, send an email to

Wow is the word! A bit incomplete, but not lacking in spunk…before you even enter the Murano, you are greeted by enormous white plastic planter pots four feet tall ready for trees to be nestled inside. The lobby is white — stark white — with touches of silver. Two clover-shaped silver leather chairs welcome you at the door. Lined up along the corridor are four silver and black Murano-made sculptures that are reminiscent of Fred Flinstone’s pet, Dino. In fact, Fred and his alter ego, George Jetson, is everywhere…from the futuristically shaped chairs, to the black-lit corridors, to the purple, orange and red spotted furry-walled elevator, to the riverbed stone bathroom floors, to the egg-shaped toilets, tubs and wash basins in the suites, to the 130 different kinds of vodka that line the mirrored bar (which, I am told, is the coolest drinking hole in town!).

It’s a must-see — even if it’s not your idea of a Paris “hôtel de charme.” The rooms are lush and plush, with long white shag carpeting, big beds dressed all in white, adorned by Bang & Olufsen sound systems and tooth-shaped silver mini-bars.

It wasn’t all that long ago that the “apartments” in the Murano were for sale under the “Leaseback Scheme” and we watched the renovation turn an old dilapidated 19th-century building into a work of art.

“Leasebacks” are a particular type of property investment available in France…residential properties (usually, but not always apartments) that are grouped together and run as a tourist hotel. The individual apartments are owned by private investors and rented out (leased) to the hotel operator who, in turn, lets them to tourists.

Not every apartment can qualify as a leaseback. In order to be classified as a leaseback property, known as a “Residence de Tourisme,” the project has to comply with a whole series of detailed regulations. Properties that classify as Leasebacks benefit from a number of tax advantages that can make them attractive investment options — for “certain people.”

I say “certain people” because Leasebacks aren’t for “every investor” and this is where the story leads us across another waterway to London.

Yesterday, I took the speedy Eurostar from Gare du Nord to Waterloo Station and back where I spent the day at the Old Glassworks, Covent Garden, home to John Howell and Co., Europe Law, European property attorneys. John is a regular presenter at our conferences, is a bona fide expert on all forms of property investment and speaks often about the Leaseback program to would-be property investors.

I winced when he said quite emphatically, “Leasebacks are for lazy, unsophisticated investor.” He watched the Murano go up, too — he even took photos while it was under construction to show our audiences. Elaborating, he said, “For those who strictly want an investment…maybe. But the exit route is complicated, usage is limited, you’d never want to live in it (it’s just a hotel room), and the capital growth and rental income is lower than an apartment in Paris you own outright. In other words, there are much better alternatives.”

Hot off the press is John’s com

prehensive report on the Leaseback program that is offered free with a subscription of French Property Insider. The site regularly lists Leaseback properties currently on the market (visit /frenchproperty/insider/leasebacks/lb_list.php). You’ll see when you visit the listing, that properties in Paris are hard to come by — most are in resort areas — along the Côte d’Azur or in the Alps.

John’s report gives you the background and history of the program, the ins and outs, ups and downs, pros and cons. Sellers of these properties tend to present only their winning arguments, and there is no doubt, some, but don’t be misled. If you’ve got lots of spare cash lying around and don’t care about enjoying any part of it, then Leasebacks can be the perfect “investment for dummies.”

But if what you want is to have a little piece of France to fill your heart with joy, then simply stay the week in the Murano or the Jardins du Marais or a short-term apartment that parismarais© offers while you search for your own pied-à-terre to call home.

For those of you in Paris, see you next Tuesday at Après Midi.

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris

P.S. John will be talking at length about the best property investment plans you can make in France at the Working and Living in France Conference May 20 – 22, 2005…along with Yolanda Robins, Property Manager from French Property Insider, who will provide an inside look at what’s hot and what’s not in Paris…plus Claude Nédérovique from and who will explain how to make up to a 10% return on the Paris apartment you own and call home. To register and take advantage of the Early Bird discount, visit /frenchproperty/conference/WLIF_PARIS_2005/WLIF_PARIS_2005_home.html

P.P.S. Special thanks to Michael Salone for sending this special message…made on a website called Letter James, you can make your own messages like this one: Have fun!

Further resources:

* Foreigners can borrow up to 80% on a home loan. Find out how easy it is.

* Learn how to buy property in France….the insights, recommendations, and discoveries about buying and investing in real estate in Paris and France.

* Many people don’t have the time nor the resources to look for their own little piece of France. Let us make your dream to live in France come true.

Calendar #52
Wednesday, April 6, 2005
Paris, France

If you wish your community announcement to be listed in the Parler Paris Previews, continue to please provide the text in ENGLISH just as you’d like it to appear and send it to Nancy Szczepanski: We reserve the right to edit as necessary.

Thank you, Adrian

Strictly Entertainment: Comedy, Plays, Movies, Dance

Word for Word Performing Arts Company
-A highly acclaimed professional theatre company from San Francisco, California, is here for it’s 10th annual Tour de France (gràce à the Florence Gould Foundation)

Performing 2 short stories by Tobias Wolff:
Lady’s Dream & Bullet in the Brain

Wednesday, 13 April at 8:00 p.m.
for the American Library at the Salle Adyar
4, Square Rapp, Paris 75007
Métro: Ecole Militaire


Laughing Matters in Paris presents:
The dazzling Ed Byrne + support from John Fotheringill

Tuesday and Wednesday April 12 and 13, 8:30 p.m.
At: La Java,105 rue du faubourg du Temple, Paris 75010
Métro: Goncourt or Belleville
Tickets: 22 and 20 euros

Hear a bit of his previous Paris show on our website


La Compagnie Lester McNutt presents: TREEMONISHA by Scott Joplin Opera
in Three Acts Words and music by Scott Joplin Saturdays at 9:00 p.m. and Sundays at 3:00 p.m., April 30-June 19

Théâtre Darius Milhaud 80, Allée Darius Milhaud, 75019 Paris Métro: Porte de Pantin Call 01-42-01-92-26 for reservations

Dubbed the “King of Ragtime” by his music publisher, Scott Joplin
(1868-1917) was a formally educated musician whose popular piano rags
inspired him to go on to composition on a larger, far more developed
scale and conception. His second opera, Treemonisha, an example of his
most serious work, was published in 1911 at his own expense.

The story of a young woman who defies the facts of her social and
racial background and works her way up the social ladder, trading on
education and non-violence, 40 years before Mahatma Gandhi and 60
years before Martin Luther King. Needless to say that Scott Joplin’s
chances of raising money to produce his masterpiece were anywhere from
modest to remote.

The New York Times praised Treemonisha as gently imbued with ragtime,
aspiring “to genuine operatic richness.”


The International Players present: THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE April 14th, 15th, and 16th at 8:30 p.m.
and Saturday, April 16th and Sunday, April 17th at 2:30 p.m.

Salle des Fêtes Quai Voltaire, 78230 Le Pecq RER line A: Le Vésinet-Le Pecq Adults: 15 Euros, Students: 10 Euros Reservations: Phone: 06 76 27 11 07


MOVING PARTS Play Readings Carr’s Pub and Restaurant
1 rue du Mont Thabor, 75001 Paris
Métro: Tuileries

Always on Sundays, always at 7:30 p.m.

Plays in English:
April 17 NC Heikin “Femail”
May 1 Robert Watson Barr “Sixty”
May 22 Kenneth Hickey “The Train Set”
May 29 Thomas Dooley “Discretion”

Plays in French: April 3 Romain Bisseret “Mariage d’Amis”
May 1 Pascal Loison “Intimités”

Contact Stephanie Campion at to book a reading of YOUR play. June 2005 onwards dates available.

Latest version always available on the website:

r/> or send an email to Stephanie

Musical Interludes

Cap Jazz
“Three to get ready” with Joe Makholm

The idea of Cap jazz is to demystify jazz through pedagogical evenings designed for the public at large. Joe Makholm explains,tells, illustrates and makes accessible the different styles and eras of jazz.

Tuesday April 12, 2005 at 7:00 p.m.
AT: Le Sous-Sol, 35 rue des Panoyaux, Paris 75020
Métro: Ménilmontant
8 euros, reservations recommended

Literary Events

The Village Voice invites you to hear the Canadian novelist Jane Urquhart, Apri l7 at 7 p.m..
AT: Village Voice. 6 rue Princesse, Paris 75006
Métro: Mabillon, Odeon or St Germain de Près


Canadian Author Jane Urquhart, winner of the Governor General’s Award for her novel The Underpainter, will be at the Abbey Bookshop.

April 8, 7:00 p.m., 29, rue de la Parcheminerie, Paris 75005
Métro: St Michel/ Cluny la Sorbonne


NEW ENGLISH MAGAZINE EVENT for “GoGo” PARIS IN ENGLISH,a new cultural and language magazine. FASHION, ART, FOOD, SHOPPING, CLUBS, MUSIC, TV, DESIGN, DANCE, OPERA, THEATRE. The first issue comes out in April.

April 14, 8-11:00 p.m.
Soiree AT: La Mezzanine du PALAIS DE TOKYO
DJs Princesse Lea & Jean Love.
Open Bar. RSVP:


Starting this week — To the Lighthouse Monday nights, 8-10 p.m.
2 spaces available

Starting next week — Great Gatsby/Catcher in the Rye — Tuesday nights-full

Starting next week — To the Lighthouse Tuesday afternoons, 1:30-3:30 p.m. — 5 spaces available

Call or email for more information

Bonnes Soirées and Great Gatherings


Next Meeting: April 12th, 2005 and Every Second Tuesday of the Month 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

This is your opportunity to meet every month, often with local professionals who can answer your Working and Living in France questions. You are invited to come for drinks and share your questions and comments about what it takes to create a life here, own property and enjoy what France has to offer. It is also an opportunity to network with other Parler Paris readers.

Upstairs at La Pierre du Marais
96, rue des Archives at the corner of rue de Bretagne
75003 Paris
Métro Lines 9, 3 et 11, stations Temple, République or Arts et Métiers



others. You must bring a card.

Guest speaker every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. Cocktail Buffet. Make contacts for business, career opportunities, self-development Bring lots of Business Cards to exchange with others. You must bring a card.
(Interested in being a guest speaker? Contact Patricia)

PARTICIPATION: 15 Euros in an envelope and lots of business cards.



Thanks for reserving via return email! If you don’t receive an email
confirmation by Sunday, please call Patricia’s Tel:, email:


(NEW TIME! Happy Hour Is At 6:30 p.m. Don’t Miss It.)

PARIS SOIREES: Patricia is proud to have a 21st Century Parisian Salon. Our mission is to simply enlarge our circle of acquaintances in a safe and stimulating atmosphere while promoting Cultural Achievement, The New Age and Paris Personalities. And we have fun! We are THE gathering place for the International Community of Paris. Enjoy! Discuss! Meet new and interesting people.

Sunday 10 April at 6:30 p.m. Our guest of honor will be:
Bob Swaim, Filmmaker

Swaim directed his first feature “La Nuit de Saint-Germain des Près” (with Michel Galabru, Mort Shuman and Daniel Auteuil). His second film “La Balance” (with Nathalie Baye) swept the French Academy Awards (les Césars ) winning Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Film. He then directed “Half Moon Street” (1986) starring Michael Caine and Sigourney Weaver; followed by “Masquerade” (1988) with Rob Lowe and Meg Tilly); “L’Atlantide” (1992) with Tcheky Karyo, Jean Rochefort, Ana Galiena & Fernando Rey. His recent film “The Climb”, shot entirely in New Zealand, starring John Hurt and David Strathairn, won the prestigious UNCIEF Prize for Best Feature Film at the Berlin Film Festival 1998. He wrote and directed this past summer’s hit French comedy, NOS AMIS LES FLICS (“Cheap Shot”), starring Daniel Auteuil which is now available on DVD. He has also adapted James Baldwin’s cult novel “Giovanni’s Room” for Merchant-Ivory. He also directed the Janacek opera “Jenufa” for the Salzburg Opera Festival.

For his contribution to French cinema, Bob Swaim was awarded the Chevalier of Arts and Letters by the French government. He is also a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the European Film Academy. He is currently preparing “Paris-Babel” for 2006.

Location: This week we’re at Patricia’s place on the I’le St. Louis Métro: Sully-Morland (closest) or Pont-Marie.

PARTICIPATION: It’s 20 Euros in an envelope with your name, home telephone and email if we don’t already have it. Please include your card.

CONFIRMED RESERVATIONS ARE NECESSARY. Thanks for reserving via return email! If you don’t receive an email confirmation by Sunday, please call Patricia. Tel: 01 43 26 12 88


27 Years of Dinner Chez Jim Haynes

Jim’s atelier becomes a salon every Sunday night where about 70 people from all over the world meet, dine, drink and enjoy themselves. Telephone on Saturday or Sunday for your invitation, directions and the door code.

Jim Haynes
Atelier A2
83, rue de la Tombe Issoire
75014 Paris, email


Have your portrait painted by American Portrait Artist, Kathy Burke
For samples of her great
work, visit /parlerparis/art/index.html



Tell your french friends!

Business English, conversation,writing,TOEFL/TOIC prep. All levels. Lessons designed to meet student’s needs. Instructor has a Masters degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Language (TESOL),and 10 + years of teaching experience. Contact Nancy Szczepanski at or email:

Art and Culture

Portrait/Life Model drawing course.
5 Saturday mornings: May 21, 28, June 4,11,18
10 a.m. – 1 p.m

Registration by 1 May
Structured course covering anatomy, perspective, techniques, design,
light/shadow & more.

* Small class sizes in fully equipped atelier in Paris.
* Course fee covers models & materials
* All levels welcome: from beginners to advanced.
* For reservations & further information pleas contact or telephone: 01 42 33 76 71


The Musée Dapper
Exhibition: “Signes du Corps”
Tatooing, scarring, piercing and marques required by traditional cultres.

Guided visit by Bonny Gabin
Wednesday, April 20th at 7:00 p.m. Reservations necessary. Tel. 01 45 00 91 75, 9 euros

Exhibit until July 17

Every day 11 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., except Tuesday et the 1st,5th and 8th of May, 5 euros

Musée Dapper- 35, rue Paul Valéry, 751116 Paris
Métro: Victor Hugo

Cooking Classes with Christian Constant

The next three scheduled “Classes de Cuisine” will be on: Monday’s: May 9, and June 6

April in Paris, isn’t only a fantastic song, it’s also the title of
our next cookery class

Spring is the season of lamb and a whole selection of beautiful
springtime vegetables and Christian will be showing you how to choose
your various cuts of lamb, prepare them and serve with seasonal
vegetables dishes.

Our classes try to be informal and chatty, full of useful tips and
information to help you buy and cook food the easiest way possible

We begin the morning at 9h30 with coffee and croissants, spend
approximately 3 hours in the kitchen, followed by an aperitif and
lunch for those who wish to stay and eat with Christian Constant in
his fish bistro “Les Fables de la Fontaine.” The price is 185 Euros per person all included, or 140 per person without lunch.

If you would like to reserve a place, please respond by email giving
your name and the number of participants plus a telephone number where
we can contact you in France.

Alternatively you may reserve by telephone at 01 45 55 15 05 or
Fax +33 1 45 55 00 91
Restaurant Le Violon d’Ingres 135 rue Saint Dominique
75007 Paris
Métro: Ecole Militaire


Arts nord sud Paris present American artists: Aleksander Balos and Davide Larousse
March 31- April 15
Opening: March 31, 6:00 p.m.
at Credit Municipal de Paris, Espace Griffon 22 rue des Blancs Manteaux, 75004 Paris For further information contact: Arts nord sud Paris: Philippe Hecquet 59 rue Louis Blanc, 75010 Paris France Tel: +33 (0)1 40 05 02 32

Learning la Langue Française

Parler Parlor French-English Conversation Group

SPECIAL CLOSING: Saturday, May 14th Parlor Times — 3 Times A Week In Two Locations

Berlitz Opera – Tuesdays 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. 38 Avenue de l”Opéra
2nd arrondissement, Paris Opéra, RER A Auber

At Eurocentres – Wednesdays 2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Saturdays 11
a.m. to 12:30 p.m. 13 passage Dauphine (entrance at 30 rue Dauphine,
between rue Dauphine and rue Mazarine), 6th arrondissement Métro
Odéon, Saint-Michel

Membership and General Information
Email: Elisabeth Crochard, Tel:
Adrian Leeds, Tel:

Knowledge is Power:
Conferences, Workshops, Seminars and Lectures

The French-American Foundation presents:

French-American Histories: recalling the strategic importance of a long-standing alliance

Title: “De Tocqueville’s America: The French Reaction to a New Social and Political Experiment”

Date: April 21, 2005
Time: 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., followed by a cocktail reception.

Location: France Amériques, 9 avenue Franklin Roosevelt, 75008 Paris

Participation Fees : Membres FAF and FA, Les Amis de L’Histoire, Professeurs: 10 euros, Studiants: 5 euros, Others: 15 euros

RSVP necessary.For more information contact:
Tel: 01 45 77 40 01


Workshop in Executive Presence with Madeleine BARCHEVSKA, M.A.

Inviting You to Explore … “Behind the Mask”

Increased business effectiveness, confidence, clarity and impact are the results of this training. Designed for executives and top management, this is a high-performance learning experience which enhances personal impact, accelerates development of personal style, and minimizes stress.

The mask is an ancient tool of liberation. It magnifies perception and puts us in direct contact with the flow of our nervous system and our impulse to respond to life. Knowledge from both life sciences and theatre arts fuel this training. It is both direct and indirect, deep and engaging, and contributes immediately to success at a dynamic executive level.

Madeleine Barchevska has developed an award-winning approach to training which is profound, accelerated, fascinating and which gives immediate results in all areas of life. Barchevska takes the essence of artistic and scientific knowledge and custom-designs training for the specific needs of each individual within the group. This can be a memorable learning experience for each participant.

Friday evening , April 8, 7:30 – 10:30 p.m. and Saturday morning April 9, 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (Total: 6 hours)

At: Atelier 44, 159 rue de Charonne, 75011 Paris
Course Price : 85 Euros per participant

To Reserve Your Place : Send a check for 50 Euros before April 3rd to Madeleine Barchevska 67, bd. Bineau 92200 Neuilly sur-Seine (Balance to be paid on Friday evening)


Advanced Writing Worksho

p-Creative Renewal

Sessions for Advanced Writers in English in Paris with Kathleen Spivack. Next workshop: Thursday, May 5th

These workshops offer a protected time to concentrate intensively on your ongoing writing projects, move them along a bit, and write your head off! Exquisite attention and support for your writing process. Places are extremely limited. Please telephone me in advance to discuss your project and whether this workshop might be right for you. The workshops are professional-and enjoyable! Phone:

Price: 55 Euros per session (50 Euros per session for former attendees and with early enrollment) Continued professional discussion over (optional) lunch afterward.
*Individual private intensive coaching is also available for serious advanced writers who are working toward publication.

Kathleen Spivack is the author of many books of prose and poetry (Doubleday, Graywolf, etc.). Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, she has held NEA, PSA, Bunting, Howard, and numerous other prizes and fellowships; and has been published in over 300 magazines and anthologies (The New Yorker, Poetry, The Paris Review, The Atlantic Monthly, Kenyon, Esquire, Antioch, Agni, Virginia Quarterly, Harvard Review, etc.). Cited by the National Writers” Union as an outstanding writing coach, she teaches throughout the United States and France. Kathleen Spivack’s clients are her best advertisement. They win major prizes and publish widely: NEA, Pitt, Yale, Troubadour, Eugene O”Neil, Prometheus, PSA, Alice James, Bunting, Howard, Ohio, Ragdale, Chicago, Texas, Stanford, St. Martins, Cleveland, Graywolf, Workworks, Rutgers, Viking/Penguin, Simon and Schuster, Knopf, Little Brown, and others. Some are performance artists, songwriters, play and screen writers, choreographers. They staff literary magazines, bookstores, universities, major writers” conferences, communication media (print, television, cinema, radio, and theatre), and publishing houses. Tel:


Drawing classes (portrait/life model)

Would you like to learn or improve your drawing skills? Award-winning art director and artist Brett Petrie is holding a weekend intensive portrait/life model drawing class – taught in English – on March 5-6, 2005. The course will provide a relaxed, constructive atmosphere, with practical techniques and ideas that can help break down the barriers to improving drawing skills. Beginners and more accomplished artists are welcome. Class size limited to 15. Fee includes materials and model fees. Call Brett on 01 42 33 76 71 for more details, a brochure (with samples of his own art) by email, and to reserve your place.


The American Library in Paris presents: Evenings With An Author
Sponsored by the Annenberg Foundation

American Library in Paris 10 Rue du Général Camou, 75007
Métro: École Militaire, Alma-Marceau, RER C Pont d’Alma
Bus: 42, 63, 69, 80, 82 and 92

For more information, please call 01 53 59 12 60 or Email


Wine seminars with David Witter

April 7, April 12 and May 5 Designed to introduce students to the fundamentals of oenology. Class size is limited to encourage informal discussion and exchange of personal observations. Grape varieties within major and less well known wine growing areas of France are discussed and wines from them are tasted and evaluated in a structured manner. Details of each seminar will be posted on my web site several days before each class. I select the wines from those most recently available in Paris. And a wine salon is coming in early April (Porte de Champerret), so I’m holding off till then. For more information see the website for Vignerons Indépendants de France,

Astro Paris by Eric Francis

The Pope, born the day of a solar eclipse in 1920, will be buried Thursday, the day of a solar eclipse 84 years later. You could say that’s how eclipses work. This will be the world’s most watched funeral since that of Diana, Princess of Wales, died the week of a solar eclipse in 1997.

Eclipses tend to gather the public, bring groups of intense events, and shift our perspective on life. Here is a segment of my March 18 column from, which tells a bit of the story:

The first degree of Aries, or the beginning of the whole story, is called the Aries Point. It’s where we reckon the tropical horoscope and the sidereal horoscope — that is, the backdrop of the stars. In other words, if you look at the Sun’s position in space on the day of the Vernal Equinox, it falls in one of the actual constellations — which happens to be Pisceus. So for the most part, the tropical zodiac and the sidereal zodiac are off by one sign (which factors into one of this week’s questions below).

The Aries Point is a truly sensitive point — often acting with greater potency than a planet or the lunar nodes. When the Sun or any other planet is in early Aries, or making a 90-degree or 180-degree aspect to early Aries, there can be distinct effects.

At such times, events can occur that involve a lot of people. An unfortunate example is the tsunami, which came at the same time as a Full Moon square the Aries Point. There are many, many examples in the history of astrology.

This quality of bringing in the masses seems to run counter to the highly individualized nature of Aries. But the Aries Point itself is almost always some kind of invitation to the mass of humanity to TRANSCEND INDIVIDUALITY and to think of itself as one. …

Mars in this chart corresponds with an interesting story: on the brink of transformation, about to go into Aquarius and make a conjunction to Chiron. The Mars-Chiron conjunction, which occurs once every two years, is one of those major events that most astrologers miss. It’s a real turning point and this is the first time it’s occurred in Aquarius since the early 1960s.

All in all, the cosmos offers us a rather dramatic equinox season, this year full of surprises, developments and changes that will, with the full power of Aries, really get us to question who we are and maybe even find an answer or two. Let’s add some detail to the discussion.

On the day of the Vernal Equinox, Mercury stations retrograde in the middle of Aries. So for the first three weeks of spring, Mercury appears to be moving backwards, which it does three times a year. This time around, Mercury retrogrades nearly the way back to the Aries point, to within one degree. If the history of the Bush administration and the Iraq war are any indicators, we are in for some big developments as this station-direct occurs in the days following the solar eclipse. In a distinct way, this Mercury retrograde and the associated Aries eclipse amplify the message, ‘We’re all in this together.’

The message is further amplified by an eclipse of the Sun in Aries on April 8. Eclipses have a similar way of bringing in the mass

es and stirring up individual experiences, in a way similar to the Aries Point itself. So it fits right in with the pattern, particularly given that this eclipse is in Aries with so much other activity.

Happy Birthday, Aries!

The life we live is based on exchange. In the biological realm, a lot of oxygen molecules get passed around. On the way to making our lives better in the human realm, we must give up what we don’t want in exchange for what we do. Often it’s not so clear cut as a positive and a negative, but at the moment, there are things that subtract from your world and there are things that add to it. With a little discernment and honesty, you should have little difficulty telling which is which. The more of what you don’t want that you give up, the more of what you do want that you will have room for, and be willing to receive. Read your extended birthday report at

Eric Francis is a Paris-based prankster, scholar and internationally revered astrologer. He is publisher of Planet Waves, a weekly news service that provides both astrological insights and a unique perspective on world events and personal growth that you can surely live without but might not want to. For more information, and some disinformation, please go to

Community Announcements

Fullbright Scholar Position

The University of Tours is looking for a full professor in African American Studies for the fall term of 2006.

The pay is 7000 euros per month and travel expenses and accomodation are included. It is a highly prestigious award and the recepient would take part in the activities of our research group as well as a few parisian research institutes.

Applications can be made via the Fulbright program or the Council for International Exchange of Scholars (CIES). The deadline is May 1st of this year.

For more information check the following websites:




A few of the APRIL opportunities:
7th Beyond Paris- Chateau Tour
9th Clignancourt Flea Market
13th Lunch Around the World
13th Treasurers of the Louvre-Evening
14th Montmartre
16th Malmaison
18th Père-Lachaise
19th Auction at Hôtel Drouot
20th 18th Century Women at the Louvre
21st 3rd Annual Relocation and Repatriation Seminar
26th Bastille Walking Tour
27th Apollo Gallery at the Louvre

MAY Preview:
11th Lunch Around the World
12th Impressionist Women
19th Tour at Roland Garros
19th Dinner at the Senate
23rd Ladies of the Marais Walking Tour
25rd Estelle’s Flowers
26rd Les Halles Walking Tour
27-29th Beyond Paris – Bordeaux

American Women’s Group
32, rue du General Bertrand
75007 Paris France


The AMERICAN LIBRARY IN PARIS Presents Evenings With An Expert…

Tuesdays at 8:00 p.m. Evenings With An Expert are free and open to the public. No reservations necessary. Just show up.

APRIL 19. “Killer of the Modern World: The Mortality Effect of Climate Change (A Case Study of the 2003 Canicule).” The expert is Magali Barbieri, a Paris-based researcher at the Institut national d’études démographiques.

MAY 24. “The European Union.” How is it governed now, what would the proposed constitution change, and how is the ratification process going to unfold? The expert is Peter Linton, the Brussels-based Europe Chairman of BKSH (the worldwide government relations division of Burson-Marsteller).

JUNE 14. “EU Competition Law.” What are the rules, what are the grey areas, what are the battles, and how does all of that affect us? The expert is Pierre Kirch, Paris- and Brussels-based head of the EU law/competition law practice group of Paul Hastings Janofsky and Walker.

American Library in Paris
10, rue du Général-Camou
75007 Paris Telephone: +33 (0)1 53 59 12 60
Hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m


Saturday, April 9th, 7:30 p.m.

The American Church in Paris is teaming up with two French Protestant churches in Ile-de-France to send 20 volunteers to Beius, Romania to build a Habitat for Humanity house. To raise funds for building materials and help defray the costs of the trip, we are organizing a gala dinner at the Marriott Champs-Elysées on Saturday, April 9th, at 7:30 p.m..The Marriott is helping sponsor this dinner, consisting of an aperitif and three-course meal with wine and coffee. The evening’s entertainment will include special guest speaker, Adrian Ciorna, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity Romania, actress Peggy Smithhart, music, and more.
Tickets are 100 Euros, and all contributions are tax-deductible in France. To purchase a ticket or make a donation, please contact Stephanie Gober at Tickets will also be on sale at the American Church in Paris (65 quai d’Orsay, 75007 Paris) on Sunday mornings in March.

For Our Bay Area Friends

The Bay Area Francophile List is a weekly calendar of cultural events of interest to Francophones and Francophiles of the Bay Area, offering information on cinema, art, theater, music, conversation groups, classes, etc. and servicing the entire San Francisco Bay Area.

This week’s Bay Area Francophile List has been posted at

Please note that there will be no new list the week of March 31. Publication will resume on April 7.


Thirza Vallois in California/Spring 2005

Thirza Vallois will be back in California for a series of talks on Paris. If you happen to live in California or passing through, try and make it to one of her events. Enlightenment, pleasure, entertainment will be part of the evening, and lots of stunning slides.

Thursday, April 28, 12:15 p.m
The Monterey Institute of International Studies, McCone Auditorium

Pierce Street, Monterey Reservations (for groups and school parties) by e-mail, preferably: or by telephone: (831) 647-3508

Friday, April 29, 6:30 p.m.
La Bohème restaurant in Carmel.
For reservations: (831) 624 7500

Thursday, May 5, 7:30 p.m.
Readers Books, Sonoma
130 E. Napa St. Sonoma, CA 95476 Tel: 1 (7

07) 939 1779

Sunday, May 8, 4:00 p.m.
Napa (Napa Valley), Alliance Française
Napa Club (address and phone number to be confirmed)

Thursday, May 12, 7:00 p.m.
Santa Rosa (Napa Valley), Alliance Française
613 Fourth Street, Suite 200, Santa Rosa, CA 95404.
Telephone reservations: (707) 829-7708.

Thursday, May 19, 6:00 p.m.
The Mechanics Institute, San Francisco
57 Post Street, Telephone reservations & Information: (415) 393-0100 Reservations by email:

Sunday, May 29, 3:00 p.m.
Fifi’s Bistro and French Patisserie, Pacific Grove
1188 Forest Avenue Pacific Grove, CA 93950
Telephone reservations: (831) 372-5325

What’s On in the City

Gay Pride Parade June 25


Decision for the Olympics
On July 6, 2005, the members of the International Olympic Committee
will vote to determine which city: London, Madrid, Moscow, New York or
Paris, will host the 2012 Olympic Games. For the winner, the decision
will be a great honor. Just as great will be the opportunity availed
to it: for France, hosting the Games would mean seeing 42.000 lasting
jobs created and an increase in GDP of EUR 35 billion over a seven-
year period!

Classified Ads


Leeds Marais Apartment
Available July 22 – August 1, 2005

Located in a 17th century Le Marais Hotel Particulier, this 70 square meter two-bedroom apartment with lots of light is nicely furnished and is perfect for up to four people when rented in its entirety or a single woman in the freshly renovated guest room when owner Adrian Leeds is there.

Pictures and more details available at /parlerparis/apartments/rentals/leeds.html


Think of coming to Paris before it high season — check — THE reference Web site for le Marais. Discover selected hotels and the best places to shop as well as last minute promotions on luxury weekly rentals.

For example: 4-star studios at only 100 Euros per night instead of 140 or a loft rue Charlot at only 800 Euros per week… Visit now!


For all short term rental apartments in Paris, take a look at /parlerparis/apartments or /frenchproperty/insider/longterm.html for long term apartments.


* Property E-Zine: French Property Insider

Learn how to buy property in France. French Property Insider is an email newsletter from the editors of Parler Paris. If you’d like to learn about the insights, recommendations, and discoveries about buying and investing in real estate in Paris and France that French Property Insider readers get every week, read more about a subscription here:
/frenchproperty/insider/subscribetofpi.html or call 1-310-427-7589 Paris time.


Parler Paris Après Midi!
Meet and chat with other readers in Paris:

Our next gathering is April 12, 2004.
Subscribe to the PARISMARAIS monthly newsletter FREE…The Art of Living Guide to Le Marais.
Buy and sell with Parler Paris classifieds: /parlerparis/advertise.html
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Copyright 2005, Adrian Leeds Group, LLC

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