A Complete Conference; a Share of a Property
Monday’s Nouvellettre® left off with just a mention of the full-day tour of the Riviera, but that’s not doing it justice. The entire group from the Living and Investing in France Conference boarded a luxury coach early in the morning on Sunday, with a first stop at the beautiful villa of the Institut de Français, led by pedagogical director, Fréderic Latty. Warm croissants awaited us as we oohed and aahed over the million-dollar view of Villefranche-sur-Mer, its bay and Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat.
The Institut is one of the world’s most well-known and well-respected language schools in France. Their full immersion program, normally four weeks of speaking French five out of the seven days of the week, and only French, works. Many famous diplomats and celebrities have attended over the years. Fréderic and I often joke that he and I have more people in common than I have with anyone else in the world, since so many of our own clients and community have attended the school.
Once plied with pastries and coffee, we headed down through its lush garden and down the stairs of a narrow path to enter the old town of Villefranche-sur-Mer. Our group had an opportunity to explore this Romanesque village, with the deepest natural harbor of any port in the Mediterranean, that is just east of Nice.
The group also had the opportunity to visit “La Belle Terrasse,” our Fractional Ownership property, that has a front-row seat of the bay and that million-dollar view. The apartment got rave reviews from the visitors. The moment you walk in and see the view of the sea from the floor-to-ceiling kitchen window, then step onto the terrace where you might imagine spending much of your time gazing out on the water, you are already hooked. It’s a spacious one-bedroom on two levels in a perfect location in Villefranche-sur-Mer. The steps to the apartment are few and access to both the train station and the car park is a flat path and a four-minute walk. It’s as easy as it gets in this town that sits on many levels.
The shares of the property are sold out, but very soon we may have one or more resale shares available. The owners loved it so much, that a couple of them are considering buying their own apartments or homes. We don’t have this quite yet confirmed, nor do we know the price of the shares, but as soon as we do, we’ll let you know! Meanwhile, if you want to be on a special mailing list, email us.
We hopped back on the bus, but only went as far as the Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild in Saint-Jean-Cap-ferrat where we took a tour of the villa and the gardens, with a stop for lunch in its beautiful Salon de Thé.
The Villa, bordered on two sides by the sea, and surrounded by nine themed gardens, was the home of Baroness Béatrice de Rothschild, a member of the wealthy Rothschild family and wife of banker Baron Maurice de Ephrussi. She was a modern woman well ahead of her time, who divorced the Baron and filled the mansion with antique furniture, Old Master paintings, sculptures, objets d’art, and assembled an extensive collection of rare porcelain.
When the Baroness died in 1934, she donated the property and its collections to the Académie des Beaux-Arts division of the Institut de France. The gardens are classified by the Ministry of Culture as one of the Remarkable Gardens of France, whilst the villa itself has been classified as a Monument Historique since 1996. Fortunately for all of us, it’s open to the public and it made a perfect spot for an elegant lunch.
The peninsula of Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat was named in 2012 as the second most expensive residential location in the world after Monaco. It’s been a favorite holiday destination among European aristocracy and the international rich who visit the French Riviera for decades. We are currently considering developing a Fractional Ownership property on the peninsula, in a house situated steps from the Port de Plaisance with easy access from the #15 bus from Nice. The apartment has two-bedrooms with a lovely terrace in this dream location! If you are interested in such a property, be sure to email us.
Once fully sated, and ready to roll, our driver took the Basse Corniche all the way to the town of Menton on the Italian border, visiting all of the seaside enclaves along the way: Beaulieu-sur-Mer, Eze-sur-Mer, Monaco, Cap d’Ail, Cap Martin, Roquebrune and beyond. These views along the Côte d’Azur are breathtakingly beautiful. Patty and I, sitting in the very front of the bus, didn’t stop remarking how “it just never gets old.”
Our visit to Menton was less than an hour, but served the purpose of getting a glimpse of the hilly, medieval old town that once formed the border between Provence and Genoa. Nicknamed the Pearl of France, it was Italian until the disputed French plebiscite of 1860, when it was added to France. From Menton, we were back home at the Hôtel Splendid in time for another round of cocktails on the rooftop terrace with more friends from our Niçois community.
Before heading to Provence on Tuesday, we took Monday off to rest and regroup after the three-day conference. I met with designer Laura Poirier in the morning at “Le Jardin de la Promenade” to review the changes we’ll make to prepare it for Fractional Ownership. It doesn’t need much, but as with all of our properties, it must be perfect. The shares will go on sale very soon, with a start date of January 5th. If you are interested in having a pied-à-terre directly on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice (!), be sure to email us.
In the afternoon, I met with designer Martine di Mattéo at “Le Palais du Soleil” to see the progress. All the walls have come down and the new ones are being framed up. It was a perfect opportunity to see how the space is going to flow and feel with two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a spacious living room/dining room/kitchen surrounded by windows and balconies. The renovation will take place now till its start date, also January 5th, 2023.
Very soon, the shares will become available, but our waiting list is long, so we expect them to sell very quickly…especially once the potential buyers see the simulations of the decor that Martine has prepared! If you want to learn more, email us.
Tuesday we hopped on the bus for our five days in Provence…but you’ll have to wait until next week before I share with you this fun-filled excursion with Francophiles from all over the U.S. and Canada!
A la prochaine…
The Adrian Leeds Group®
P.S. Fractional ownership is a perfect way of combining lifestyle with investments! To learn more, visit our website and see all of our fractional ownership properties on the market today!