±JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER

Get useful expat articles, health and financial news, social media recommendations and more in your inbox each month - free!



We respect your privacy - we don't spam and you can unsubscribe at any time.

±Compare Expat Providers

Expat Health Insurance Quotes

Foreign Currency Exchange Quotes

International Moving Quotes

We're very social! Follow Expat Focus on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+

Expat Focus Facebook PageExpat Focus on TwitterExpat Focus Pinterest PageExpat Focus Google+ Page

Notify me when new content is added about a country

±Expat Focus Partners

Kim Defforge

Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

Let’s Walk The Walk In The Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur (PACA) Region

Posted by: Carole on Saturday August 09, 2014 (18:59:48)   (1749 Reads)

Kim Defforge

Walking provides low impact health benefits and forces one to slow down and take in the scenery. The Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur (PACA) region provides many breathtaking, walking adventures – from inner city or rural to passageways or coastline – as a way for you to better discover the area, and ultimately yourself, among its hidden treasures and only-on-foot wonders.

Easy Level:

The world-famous Promenade des Anglais, that follows the curve of the Baie des Anges for 5 kms., is a perfect site for taking a leisurely stroll.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

10 Iconic Things To Do & See In Nice

Posted by: Carole on Sunday July 20, 2014 (18:48:48)   (2097 Reads)

Kim Defforge

1. Museums

Follow in the footsteps of Chagall, Matisse, Renoir, and Picasso, among many other artists, with a visit to the numerous historical and fine arts museums. Discover how the light of the French Riviera inspired and captivated artists, beautifully reflected in their works of art. For added value, the new “Côte d’Azur Card” is a prepaid electronic passport that provides access to over 110 activities in the region - from the coast to the mountains, museums, nature parks, water sports activities, excursions, and tours.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

Mandelieu-La Napoule – A Château & Much More!

Posted by: Carole on Wednesday June 18, 2014 (14:42:31)   (2334 Reads)

Kim Defforge

American artist, Henry Clews, and his American wife, Marie, bought and re-built a sea-front, medieval fortress/château, built on the edge of the sea in 1387 by the Counts of Villeneuve, and renovated it in the 1920′s. As it had mostly been destroyed during the French Revolution (except for the Roman Tower from the 4th century and the Saracen Tower from the 11th century), the couple spent seventeen years re-storing the building. Above the entrance door, the phrase “Once upon a time” is engraved, announcing the entrance into their fantastic world of art, humor, and fantasy. Henry was a painter and sculptor, who abhorred the arrogant bourgeoisie (as depicted in the carved wreath of faces photo) and also made fun of doctors for their sense of superpower and condescension.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

NICE: A Boom-ing City!

Posted by: Carole on Monday May 19, 2014 (02:12:36)   (2097 Reads)

Kim Defforge

The city of Nice remains a destination favorite for international tourism, booming to around 4.3 million visitors per year, making it the number one tourist destination after Paris. Visitors account for 80% of the city's tourist market. Nice’s airport is the second airport in France, after Paris, with almost 11 million passengers, 57 airlines and 103 destinations in 30 countries. Nice is the leading conference city in France, after Paris.

Ranking after Paris, Nice has the highest concentration of museums, with 19 museums and art galleries, but is the first city in France with vineyards within its city limits. Business tourism is also booming, as one of the strengths of Nice and the French Riviera, and accounts for 20% of the visitors, all according to the Nice Convention Bureau.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

A Fashionable Château In Nice

Posted by: Carole on Saturday April 19, 2014 (02:17:38)   (1575 Reads)

Kim Defforge

One day, some friends and I decided to get out of the city of Nice! We decided to have lunch in the vicinity of a nearby castle, where we had planned on doing a guided visit and dégustation (wine tasting). I drove into the heart of the Bellet vineyards, which took about 25 minutes, as my ten year-old car meandered its way up into the hills behind Nice. Stopping in Colomars, we meandered, as well, and discovered a hotel/restaurant nestled into a hillside and its magnificent gardens - L’Auberge du Redier. Although we had arrived about ten minutes before lunch service, the staff was very welcoming, suggesting that we linger in the beautiful gardens while they prepared a table for us. We were quickly seated at a table in front of one of the large windows in the luminous and spacious dining room.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

What Scent Are You ‘Singing’?

Posted by: Carole on Sunday March 16, 2014 (03:41:45)   (1644 Reads)

Kim Defforge

Nice is about 27 km (17 miles) from the “perfume capital of the world”, Grasse, with its large parfumeries, “Fragonard” and “Molinard,” as its major industries and tourist attractions. There are several additional options, though, as Nice has “Molinard,” Eze village has “Fragonard,” and Cagnes-sur-Mer has its “Atelier des Parfums,” all where you can do a guided visit and purchase products.

I recently visited one of the perfume shops and learned that in the 16th century, roses were added into the leather making process, as a way to hide the animal odor in gloves: at that time, animal fat was used to absorb the flowers’ fragrance, then washed with alcohol and filtered.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

The Trouble With Truffles

Posted by: Carole on Tuesday January 21, 2014 (05:51:21)   (1543 Reads)

Kim Defforge

When I hear someone talking about truffles, it takes me a second or two to figure out which kind they are referring to: the confection or the fungus. This can cause trouble because, although the words are the same, their meanings are not at all interchangeable. The word truffle derives from the Latin word tuber, meaning swelling or lump, which later became tufer and eventually evolved to the current term in French, truffe.

The black truffle, referred to as l’or noir (black gold), are actually tuber melanosporum, a fungus that are harvested at the base of oak trees in winter and summer. Truffle production depends on just the right combination of soil pH, precipitation, and sunlight for a warm, dry environment and therefore, is rare. This makes them a highly prized and priced delicacy, commanding from $250 to $450 per pound.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

Winter on the French Riviera

Posted by: Jamie on Friday December 20, 2013 (04:03:50)   (1877 Reads)

Kim Defforge

After an enjoyable Indian summer, cooler temperatures have arrived along with this year’s Beaujolais Nouveau on the third Thursday of November at midnight, the legally regulated release day and time and a worldwide annual celebration of a red wine from Beaujolais, located in the Burgundy region of France. With lighted streets and holiday cheer, Nice’s main square, Place Massena, is the center of December’s holiday festivities: holiday market craft chalets, lighted holiday decorations, snow-flocked trees, a giant, lighted ferris wheel, and an ice skating rink. It’s a nice time to be in Nice, whether here as a visitor or as a resident 24/7 in France.

During and following the holiday season on the French Riviera, final preparations are also in progress for the following year’s annual, winter festivals - all of them coordinated to take place during the same time period, so that visitors can enjoy all the parades, floats, and entertainment.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

Le Negresco Is Notoriously Nice

Posted by: Carole on Thursday December 05, 2013 (00:53:13)   (3774 Reads)

Kim Defforge

Anyone who has visited Nice can’t help but notice the city’s iconic Belle Époque, palatial hotel on the Promenade des Anglais, With its white facade, pink roof and pink dome, and signature doorman dressed in regal bourgeois attire: blue frock coats, red breeches, and plumed top hat, the hotel is Nice’s signature hotel.

Henri Negresco founded the hotel, hiring architect Edouard-Jean Niermans, creator of the Moulin Rouge and Folies Bergères in Paris. The Negresco opened in 1912 and then was purchased in 1957, by Madame Jeanne Augier, her dad, and her husband, Paul. She took the hotel figuratively to new heights.

With its ninety-four bedrooms and thirty-four suites, the hotel’s decor is as visually rich as its history: decorated in brown and burgundy, gold, flamboyant pink and green, with silk fabric walls and golden headboards.    more ...


Columnists > Kim Defforge

Kim Defforge

Staying Fit On The French Riviera

Posted by: Carole on Friday November 08, 2013 (05:48:53)   (3827 Reads)

Kim Defforge

With an average of 300 days of Mediterranean sunshine per year, the Nice area is an ideal place for walking, hiking, biking, and just staying in shape in general. Along the 7 km Promenade des Anglais, it’s easy to walk, rollerblade, and bicycle along the sea without feeling like you are getting a workout. The new 12-hectare/26 acre park, named Promenade du Paillon, provides green space walkways with fountains to leisurely stroll through the heart of the city.

If more intense activity is your game, here are three levels of walks:

Easy – From the church at the Port of Nice to the Nice Airport, it is a 12 km. flat and smooth walkway with panoramic views of the sea along the way. You can choose your own pace: walk, jog, or stroll; just be mindful of the designated bicycle lane.    more ...