THOUGHTS from the PI­GEON­NIER

French Property News - - Contents -

Coucou! As well as a friendly way to say hello in French, this is also the call of that herald of spring, the cuckoo. Af­ter the Siberian-style weather we’ve had re­cently (it snowed on the Côte d’azur!) I for one am ea­gerly lis­ten­ing out for its cheer­ful greet­ing, a sign of warmer days to come. It turns out the French coun­try­side is not all peace and quiet. Bray­ing don­keys, preen­ing pea­cocks, scuf­fling stone martens and en­thu­si­as­tic cock­erels are among the noises you might want to lis­ten out for when hunt­ing for a ru­ral re­treat as we dis­cov­ered on page 34. Speak­ing of re­treats, I was fas­ci­nated to read this month about the re­cent ren­o­va­tion of an old mill near Paris where Ed­ward VIII and Wal­lis Simp­son sought refuge af­ter the ab­di­ca­tion cri­sis of 1936 (p48). In­ci­den­tally, the cou­ple hon­ey­mooned at the Ritz Paris and the fa­mous ho­tel is now auc­tion­ing off thou­sands of pieces of fur­ni­ture and ac­ces­sories for as lit­tle as €100 (p10). Per­haps Anna Ry­der Richard­son, of Chang­ing Rooms fame, will snap up some­thing for her new French home in Lot-et-Garonne (p42). Or maybe you will find some­thing for your cot­tage in Brit­tany (p26), your hunt­ing lodge in the Sologne (p62) or your hol­i­day home on Oc­c­i­tanie’s Riviera (p30). For more ideas, come and join us at the French Prop­ery Ex­hi­bi­tion in Wetherby in May (p78). A bi­en­tôt!

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