Lacoste is a treasure all its own, but Provence is full of little villages, each with their own magic and mood to explore. We would set out each time, seeking to come upon charming moments; to have enchanted evenings. I closed my eyes at the beginning of each trip and upon opening them, felt as though I was in a completely different world, one with unknown riches for me to discover. Every corner I turned was a new adventure, whether it led me to a restaurant nestled in the middle of a vineyard, a little shop filled with gorgeous vintage finds, or simply a cobblestone street set aglow by the light of fading day.
Provence, you have absolutely bewitched me…I cannot wait to return and uncover even more of your beauty…
Shopping in Provence is B-E-Y-O-N-D.
Here are some of our *favorite* spots:
~ A visit to L’Isle sur la Sorgue (which has the best antique shopping stores and markets) unearthed the most EPIC vintage store: La Fripe Chic. It was so much fun shopping with two fashion designers…they were pulling clothes left and right for us, styling them on our bodies before we could look in the mirror so we always fell in love with every piece!
~ Espadrilles are so popular in France you can buy them at the grocery stores! Glenn Wallace was so sweet and bought me a pair as souvenirs from a store in Apt which he says are the best.
~ One of the cultural gems of this area in Provence are the small traveling markets that pop up in different towns each day. Selling everything from linens, clothing, cookware, and art.
~ In Ménerbes, La Vie Est Belle is filled with magical finds for your home old & new (I bought the coolest cermeic fish for our kitchen made by local artists!) and at Sacha Decoration you can find modern day chic for your home and your closet
~ I found simplicity and elegance at the Edith Mézard boutique
~My favorite Provence treasure was finding in the town of Roussillon the ceramic work of Edith & Natacha Fidler, Edith has a great friendship with Pablo Picasso whose influence is still seen in the interesting faces of her pieces.
On every trip, there are surprises – some of them not so great, and some of them totally amazing. Cirque Landri, a traveling circus, was the latter. It just so happened to be in town the week we were visiting, so we had to drop by the brightly colored spectacle and take it all in!
In 2001, designer legend Pierre Cardin purchased the ruins of Château Lacoste, the former home at the infamous Marquis de Sade. Since then he has partially renovated the site and hosts music and dance festivals there throughout the year. We were lucky enough to attend Festival de Lacoste, a two-week festival filled with theater and dance performances. Below SCAD’s International Special Projects Coordinator Carmela Spinelli chats with Mr. Cardin before the performance in the middle of a Roman quarry.
I would go back just for the food and wine. I have never had better. These were my favorite eats:
~ L’Arôme (I had the best risotto of my life here!)
~ Le Mas de Tourteron (SO romantic)
* most of these restaurants are within 20-30 minutes driving distance from Lacoste *
All of our Provençal adventures: