June 4, 2011

A Favorite Garden

Knowing that I visit many places in the South of France every week, people always ask "What is your favorite?"  I never have an answer as every week is different....different people, different weather, different season, etc. BUT now, I believe I have an exception.  The Ephrussi de Rothchild villa and gardens is definitely a favorite in the springtime.  The house with many of Mme Rothchild's possessions has everything from porcelain, to clothing, to art, to antiques....the villa exudes her love of 18th century France. Then there are the 9 magnificent gardens that are changing every week.   Beatrice Rothchild took 7 years to build this estate on the narrowest part of Cap Ferrat where she would have a view of the bay of Villefranche sur Mer on one side and the Mediterranean Sea on the other.  Views are magnificent.  She did indeed accomplished her goal of feeling like she was on a cruise ship.  This too was enhanced by the fact that she asked her gardeners to dress as sailors. ...yes, she was a bit eccentric.  Married at the age of 19, separated a couple of years later, never to remarry, she bequeathed Villa Ephrussi de Rothchild to the Academie des Beaux-Arts de l'Institut de France who completed the gardens and have maintained them and the villa ever since. To see a complete slideshow of the villa and gardens, click here

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