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JUL-AUG 2016

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24 J U L Y / A U G U S T 2 0 1 6 spectacular, just tracing the coast. I grew up water skiing, and we see very little of it anymore. In that moment, water skiing was cool again. We strolled through Antibes' old town, its port and its acclaimed outdoor market, "Le March Provencal." Fresh-cut fl owers, meats, ol- ives and vegetables star at this city center market. It was in Antibes that we fi rst looked back to the north and saw the Maritime Alps in snow. That changed the dynamic of this trip for me. The Cote d'Azur as a destination expanded immeasurably when I realized we were in the shadow of the Alps. PANORAMIC PROVENCE We headed up to St. Paul de Vence in France's Provence region. This beautiful walled village is a few miles west of Nice on a hillside overlooking the Mediterranean. Chagall is buried in its tiny cemetery and many artists and actors spend time here. I enjoyed an al fresco lunch at Le Tilleul, overlooking the village gate. Their Salade de Ni- coise, made with rare tuna, tiny olives, anchovies and chopped veg- etables, was superb. On our fi nal day together, we traveled west to Grasse, home to France's centuries-old perfume industry. We toured its internationally known Fragonard Parfumerie before spreading out to fi nd lunch in the medieval center of the city. Then we headed north toward the Maritime Alps and began a wind- ing ascent to the most beautiful little town of this trip — Gourdon. This walled village began as a castle in the ninth century and rests atop a The walled city of St. Paul de Vence takeaways • THIS CONCEPT WORKS FOR YOUNGER TRAVELERS. Un- less you want ìaround the clockî sightseeing plans made for you, this is a great mix of a thorough orien- tation followed by lots of free time. • THE LENGTH OF THE TRIP IS PERFECT FOR PEOPLE WITH CAREERS. If I can go somewhere far away and enjoy its food, culture and lifestyle in a week, count me in. • I WANT TO BE ABLE TO WALK OUT OF MY HOTEL AND INTO THE DESTINATION. At the Hotel Ellington, we were on a quiet street two blocks from the heart of the city. Getting around on our own could not have been easier. FROM THIS COLLETTE "SPOTLIGHT" TRIP? WHAT WERE MY

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