For those of you who follow me on Facebook, I know you've seen most of these photos but I wanted to take the time to officially document our trip here on my blog.
Plans for our travels to the Loire Valley in France started nearly a year ago with this post by a blogger I've followed for awhile but never met. It certainly takes a leap of faith to travel half way around the world to a remote area of France based strictly on the recommendations of a blogger and some folks on Trip Adviser. I must admit I was just a little nervous as to what we would find.
What we found after a taxi ride from our hotel in Paris to the station to take two trains followed by an hours ride by car was just short of heaven on earth!
I've had this thing for France for as long as I can remember. I find the architecture, fashion, food, history and language fascinating. For me the people, for the most part, have always been friendly and welcoming. It wasn't however until this trip to the lush countryside of the Loire Valley and to the 19th century water mill, Le Moulin Bregeon that I felt like I discovered the true beauty and charm of France and its people.
Set amongst the green rolling hills, lush forests and tiny villages of the Loire Valley, Moulin is a step back in time with its five luxury suites, each carefully decorated with fine art and antique furniture of the region. For us what made our stay so unforgettable was the staff. Owner and visionary, American Jonathan Robertson and his staff made us feel as welcome as if we were family.
They live in perfect harmony with the land, animals and seemingly one another. Jonathan works tirelessly to preserve the aesthetics of the original structures and their surroundings. I honestly feel like our six days there will forever change the way I will view my world once I'm home.
This is the view of the grounds from our room. The stream runs under the house providing a tranquil backdrop.
Our room on the second floor was spacious and comfortable with old linens and line dried towels. Yes, we did feel like royalty in that bed!
After a day of sightseeing Chef Nora would magically appear in our room with a little something to hold us over until dinner. Heaven help us that we should ever go hungry!
The dining room downstairs and just inside the front door is where we had our breakfast and planned our day. The two chefs Bernard and Nora delighted in spoiling us. When they emailed us a few days prior to our arrival and asked about any dietary restrictions they met the challenge of this vegetarian with delicious enthusiasm.
The meals were amazing!
Fruits, vegetables, wines and cheeses where locally grown and produced.
Each course was embellished to perfection!
After dinner chef Bernard asked if I'd like tea or coffee. I said, no thank you, that I didn't want anything to interfere with my sleep. He suggested herbal tea and disappeared into the garden for some herbs.
Don't tell Lucy but Bill and Figaro became good friends.
Actually we both felt like we made wonderful friends at Le Moulin Bregeon. Although the accommodations and food were beyond our wildest dreams it was the warm and friendly people that made our stay so exceptional.
We can't wait to return!
Encourage one another,
PS: Some of our friends asked us about three weeks away with just the two of us. I'd say Ernest had the right idea:
I love you Bill. Thank you for helping make this trip of a lifetime a reality!