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Provence: Bobbi Brown

2 minute read
Betsy Kroll

“I went to provence to celebrate my husband’s 50th birthday on a six-day, 200-mile bike trip,” says Bobbi Brown, whose newest book, Bobbi Brown Living Beauty, comes out next month. Wandering the markets and sampling the cuisine were high on her priority list, but Brown’s eponymous cosmetics company was never far from her mind. “I found a lot of really great things that I brought back to our product-development team—a million different soaps and lavenders, all from the local markets,” she says. Inspiration for her spring ’08 collection even came from a richly colored pashmina she bought there. Here are some highlights from the trip:

GUIDE We are obsessed with Backroads (800-462-2848; backroads.com) I don’t think I’ll go on a family trip again without them because they take care of everything.

MARKET Vaison-la-Romaine vaison-la-romaine.com has a great market, and you can see the Roman ruins right nearby. I bought the most beautiful raspberry pashmina there. We also got some really beautiful tablecloths.

WINERY I used to be a California-wine drinker, and now I’m definitely a French-wine drinker. We had a great afternoon at Domaine de Grangeneuve (33-4-75-98-50-22; domainesbour.com) a family-run winery.

HOTELS All the places we stayed at are the most charming, picturesque inns and mini-castles you can imagine. Hostellerie de Crillon le Brave (33-4-90-65-61-61; crillonlebrave.com has incredible views. Quiet and very chic, but really comfortable.

Hostellerie le Phébus (33-4-90-05-78-83; lephebus.com has its own Michelin one-star restaurant. The chef, Xavier Mathieu, comes out at the end of the meal and bows. Very French and very rich food, but delicious.

Château de Massillan (33-4-90-40-64-51; chateau-de-massillan.com is small and really nice. It was a formal getaway for the mistress of Henry II, Diane de Poitier.

SHOP Sud les Huiles d’Olive de Provence (Place du Château, 84220 Gordes) is a little shop that is going to open on Madison Avenue in New York City. It’s a soap-fragrance-skin-care store. I bought a lot, and it was packaged beautifully.

TOWN Gordes gordes-village.com has wonderful cafés, colorful houses—very scenic. That little town is the chicest area.

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