With the coming of autumn, the end of this year’s tours of France is upon us. As we start to look to our programs next year, I find myself reflecting on all the inspiring women (and men) who joined me this year. From our guests on our first tour in Burgundy to those who came for the third tour in Provence, and everyone who was included in one of the many tours I’ve done in my home region, Normandy and Paris. Such excitement surrounds these special times for both myself and those that join us. For my guests, it’s about discovering a new area of France, and for me, showing my guests the beautiful way of life we enjoy here, along with private visits to chateaux, gardens, and artisans studios.
This year I was particularly happy and grateful to have so many repeat clients, ladies returning to tour France with me for the second, third, fourth or even fifth time. Such a joy to greet them as guests and by now as friends too.
One of the highlights this year was a new addition to our September Brocante and Lifestyle tour. My girlfriends Cécile and Octavie at Maison du Bac, a home decor store in Paris, invited us for a private visit, during which we sipped champagne, nibbled delicious macarons and learnt so much about French dining room etiquette, traditional ways to lay tables as well as showing us decorative place setting ideas, and more. We were charmed by their tales of their family dinners, where four generations sit down to share a long delicious meal, and where elegance is a given (and cellphones are not).
I also distinctly remember walking around the Chateau de Moissac Bellevue during our Provence tour with Louis, who owns the chateau with his wife Marie Christine. He showed us around the chateau, explaining the renovation process and my guests were enchanted to hear so much detail, such as the care he took to hand-make 200 nails for the shutters so they looked like the original piece he’d found in the attic.
Moissac is our home base for all my Provence tours, and as well as enjoying meals here, we also share a floral class, aperitifs on the terrace, classes on caring for antique linens, and much more. It is so special to show people this magical place, that like all of the places on our tour was carefully chosen from extensive research or close ties from friends. In 2020, we will return to the chateau as our base for two special events: our first retreat in April and the return of our Provence tour in June, which will for the first time ever be in June when the lavender is in full bloom.
Another wonderful memory was the introduction of our Burgundy tour. After weeks of research, my assistant and I had the opportunity to show our guests around this gorgeous region for the first time in MFCH history. One of the days we quite literally chateau hopped seeing two in a day. We visited a garden hidden high in the rolling hills, behind an unmarked gate that once opened revealed a potager sprawling below us in cascading terraces. Picnic baskets in hand we made our way down, terrace by terrace to sit by the small river for lunch, the mist rolling through in the distance.
There are far too many other moments to recount like visiting Beatrice, a beautifully talented watercolorist in her 70s who lives and paints in her 16th century chateau, and visiting with my friend Franck, an awarded cookbook author and friend in Le Perche. Each day is full of activities as we take care of every detail leaving you to simply enjoy. Every evening I find myself not only looking forward to the day to come but also reflecting on each special encounter that took place whether between our guests, who even now tell me that they still meet up or between the people we visited, or those we met along the way. The tours bring people together in the spirit of celebrating the French way of life and the exploration of different regions.
I’m very happy to announce the 2020 tours of France, and hope to see you on one soon to form your own extraordinary memories that will surely last a lifetime.
The MFCH Tours & Experiences
- All of our tours of France include accommodation, transportation, meals, and activities. Please note that the Brocante tour is an exception, where we leave the choice of accommodation to our guests during our days in Paris to allow them to choose where they would like to stay.
- The group sizes are between 10-13 people.
- About half of our groups are solo adventurers looking to connect and enjoy with like-minded people. The other half are mom-daughter duos, partners, friends, sisters, husbands and wives…
- Full itineraries are revealed to confirmed guests 1-2 weeks before the tour is set to start. This allows us to make changes up until the last minute to ensure the tours are fresh and filled with new and interesting activities each time.
- My assistant and I are available at all times to help with any translations needed.
- To confirm your place we ask for a 25% deposit. The remainder is due one month before the tour starts.
2021/22 Tours Update:
Brocante Tour: September 20-26, 2021
An exploration of the countryside of Normandy and the antique fairs around Paris. We’ll visit friends of mine, stay at a gorgeous Domaine, and hunt for treasures each day. This tour includes shopping opportunities each day such as a full-day visit to the antique fair at Chatou. This experience is for all guests, whether a professional buyer or an enthusiast. Learn More.
Dordogne Tour: May 18-23, 2022
Visit chateaux and the most beautiful gardens, drink wine and take a cooking class. We’ll be celebrating the region of Dordogne with incredible meals, antique shopping, and private garden visits. This tour is great for couples. Learn More.
Provence Tour: June 15-20, 2022
For the very first year, we have timed our Provence tour to coincide with the lavender field blooms. It’s a beautiful season and we cannot wait to share this with you along with visits to boutiques in cobblestone villages, a perfume class and much more. Learn More.
We’ll be staying in the stunning and newly renovated hotel Le Moulin de Lourmarin.
We invite you to visit the links for each tour for additional information. If you have any questions or are ready to book your places, please email us at [email protected]. Molly and I are very happy to help in any way we can.
I hope that our paths will cross next year, and to all of you who have already booked I simply say “à bientôt!”