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Burgundy Wine Region Vacation

Located in central eastern France, the Burgundy region starts 100 kilometers (about 60 miles) south of Paris and stretches down to Lyon over 225 miles. A province known for its wines above anything else, Burgundy welcomes visitors with its lush and cheerful countryside. The prosperity of the region is visible in the pretty, well-maintained villages and houses, handsome churches and chateaux. Wherever the soil can support vines, it is planted with close rows of grapes.

Burgundy Wines

Burgundy grows some of the most expensive, world famous vintages and more affordable, universally enjoyed wines. Both Chardonnay and Pinot Noir originated in Burgundy. The names of the villages are a wine list: Chablis, Gevrey Chambertin, Nuits Saint Georges, Volnay, Meursault,  Mercurey,  Givry, Pouilly Fuissé, all are Burgundy villages that gave their names to wines. The larger towns of Beaune and Macon gave their names to wines as well.

Dijon and Beaune

The center of Dijon is a dream for architecture lovers with its elegant mansions, palaces and churches along narrow streets. Museums show case the elaborate carvings and stone work, surviving pieces of abbeys and mansions that were destroyed over time. Dijon is known as the city of mustard and fir an aperitif invented by a previous mayor, Chanoine Kir, a mix of white or red wine and red currant (cassis) cream. Cassis is another local crop. White wine and sirop de cassis is a “Kir”, while red wine and cassis is a Communard. Felix Kir fought the Nazis in the resistance during WWII and was later elected as a Deputé to the French National Asembly.

After Dijon, no visitor should miss the town of Beaune and its remarkable Hotel-Dieu. Referred to as les Hospices de Beaune, it was a hospital founded in 1443. It contains beautiful paintings and carvings. Visitors never forget the Great Hall of the Poor with its huge cathedral like wood ceiling and perfectly preserved rows of beds shared by several patients in medieval times.

The kitchen, pharmacy and Cour d’Honneur, whose roofs are all covered with colorful glazed tiles in geometrical patterns, afford visitors of all ages a fascinating glimpse into the past. The Hospices de Beaune host a famous, charitable wine auction every year, for three days, around the 3rd Sunday in November.

Burgundy Abbeys

Burgundy with its long history of prosperity is also a land of beautiful abbeys, most of them around 1000 years old. Down to earth and practical, the habitants of Burgundy have always been anxious to secure material comforts as well as eternal life through good deeds and prayer. Preoccupied with success and good food in life they also strive for happiness beyond their time on earth.   Burgundy’s beautiful Cistercian abbeys are witness to the spiritual aspirations of that lovely region: Vezelay, Fontenay, Tournus are some of the great Burgundy abbeys, all worth a lengthy visit. Tradition lives on in the ecumenical center or Abbaye de Taizé whose retreats led by monks attract young people from all walks of life, in search of spiritual meaning.

Cluny and South Burgundy

In South Burgundy, near Macon, Cluny is a small town living in the shadow of an abbey dating back to the year 910 and partially destroyed in 1790. It is a locale of exceptional beauty, tradition, cuisine and of course wine. For sophisticated, discriminating travelers, Cluny is a town of dazzling fascination. Despite its millennium-plus heritage, Cluny remains a real working community, unlike some charming towns in Provence teaming with tourists and void of real life.

Luxury Vacation Property

One of the most beautiful France Homestyle vacation properties sits above Cluny. Appropriately named “Le Plaisir”, sleeping up to six people, the property is a joy to behold, inside and out. It will make a Francophile out of any and all visitors. One word defines Le Plaisir : enchantment. It presents a unique combination of natural and man-made beauty. When guests discover the … pleasure “du Plaisir”, they come back. Surrounded by woods and verdant farmland, completely private and secluded, it is nevertheless only five minutes to the town of Cluny with its markets, many restaurants. Equestrian center, tennis club and ancient abbey. One can tour the remains of that powerful Benedictine abbey, once the most influential monastic foundation in Europe. The Musee d’Art is housed in the formet Abbots palace. An hour’s drive away up the old wine road are Beaune and the Cote dOr. Or an hour south is Lyon, gastronomic capital of the world. Between Cluny and Lyon are the exceptional vineyards of Pouilly Fuissé, Macon and Beaujolais. For more details please visit Le Plaisir.

Another luxury France Homestyle properties, located in a village, is Maison des Pierres Dorees.  With 7 bedrooms and 5 baths, it is another exclusive property for discriminating travelers.