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Belle Inspiration

The Antiques Express to Provence

Dear Diva Readers

Looking to book an tours” target=”_blank”>Antiques Diva Provence Tour?  Then now’s the time to go South with The Antiques Diva® & Co and OuiGo – pronounced “We Go”.

Antiques Diva Provence Tours

This a new, low-cost TGV train taking you from the Paris suburb of Marne La Vallée (think Disney Paris) to Marseille, Montpellier, Lyon, Avignon, Nîmes, Aix-en-Provence and Valence.  With destinations such as these, I call OuiGo The Antiques Express!!  The trains are even decorated in hot pink and baby blue to add to the diva experience!!

The new service starts on April 1st, offering promotional fares starting at €10 and saving you more money to spend shopping for antiques!!  Make sure to prepay your luggage as prepaid luggage costs €5 per bag while showing up at the train with luggage runs €40!

Should you need some on board reading while taking the train down yonder to the South of France, I’ve got just the thing for you! Belle Inspiration has just done a fabulous interview with Antiques Diva Tour Guide Melanie about our antique buying tours in Provence!!  Click on the picture below to discover Provence done Diva Style!

Bon Voyage,
The Antiques Diva®

Throwing a Cocktail Party

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 80px; line-height: 70px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>This March 2012 Belle Inspiration magazine featured The Antiques Diva & Co in an article titled “Throwing a Cocktail Party”.  The intro reads “When Toma Clark Haines, Chief Executive Diva of The Antiques Diva & Co European Tours, and her good friend, caterer and international cooking school guru Jill DiGiovanni of CHEF in BERLIN decide to throw a party, the resulting fete is a recipe for success”. 

Rather than re-write the entire thing, click here to read the article and maybe gain a tip or two on throwing your own cocktail party!

While the Belle Inspiration publication is only allowed for viewing online by subscribers, editor Mimi Bleu graciously made this article available for Diva readers.  To subscribe to this wonderful treat of a magazine, read more here

A special thanks to the talented Laila McCubbin for capturing the festivities behind her lens!  Below are a few photos from that special evening – enjoy!

Cheers!
The Antiques Diva

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In the Press: Antiques Diva Italian Tours

Dear Diva Readers,

Perhaps I should have started today’s blog with a hearty “Buongiorno Baby”, for  The Antiques Diva® & Co’s new Italian Tours are in the news! 

Belle Inspiration – one of my favorite online magazines (and coming to print soon) – has just done a giant feature on my company, interviewing Diva Guide Susan P who leads our antique shopping tours in Italy – a whopping 12 page feature discussing Italian antiques.  They discuss where to buy antiques in Tuscany, what Italian antiques to buy, favorite Italian flea markets, how to negotiate for discounts in Italy as well as the tours we offer.  Susan, our Italian Diva, even gives hints & tips on other Italian Lifestyle & Tuscan Travel Tips!

For those of you who are willing to twist your tongue into Italian there’s even a section on Italian Antique Shopping Vocabulary – words you should know before you go!

While articles in Belle Inspiration magazine are usually only available to subscribers, Mimi Bleu – the sensational tour de force and editor-in-chief at Belle – has kindly set the article – An Essential Antique Shopper’s Guide to Italy – in a special publication specifically so Diva Readers can read the news!!!  And while this excerpt of the publication should be saved in your favorites, I have a suspicion you won’t want to miss another word Belle Inspiration has to share! Their Italian issue is down-right divine with 150 pages of Italian Inspiration!

If you’re as much of an Antiques Lover as I am, then this is one article on Antique Shopping in Italy you won’t want to miss!!!

Ciao Bella,
The Antiques Diva®

Belle Inspiration

Dear Diva Readers,

top: 5px; float: left; color: white; background: #781300; border: 1px solid darkkhaki; font-size: 100px; line-height: 90px; padding-top: 1px; padding-right: 5px; font-family: times;”>I was delighted recently when I had the opportunity to sit down with Belle Inspiration editor and founder Mimi to discuss her life in France! She shared all sorts of diva-licious details, including her favorite places to dine, tour and shop in Paris!

 

 

The Antiques Diva®
Mimi – you’re an American living in Paris. What a romantic life you must lead – how did you decide to move overseas?

Belle Inspiration
I moved to Paris like so many women before me – I came for love! I met my other half in Paris one of those old-fashioned fairy tale ways, and 16 months later we were living happily ever after. It has been a big change for me as an American in Paris, but a marvelous one. I have the best tour guide in the world and he never laughs at my horrid French!

The Antiques Diva®
So from the beginning of your time abroad you’ve been living like a local in Paris! Care to share details of your favorite spots around the city of light?

Belle Inspiration:
Paris is a walker’s city, and we like to spend our weekend exploring fabulous spots around the city. Usually when the weather is fine, we load our picnic basket and head for some of our favorite spots. You may see us in the Jardin du Ranalagh or Jardin du Luxembourg and we have even scouted out the most romantic spot in the beautiful gardens of Versailles.

The Antiques Diva®
Sounds divine! Now, the way to my heart is through food… do you have any dining tips diva’s-in-the-know need to know about?

Belle Inspiration:
To celebrate my move to Paris, my French Honey surprised me with a big splurge at Restaurant Lepérouse. Our private dining room was très romantique! The servers won’t enter your room until you call them with the silken pull cord. The Lapérouse has been in business forever, and evidently these private rooms have quite a colorful history. The decor was luxurious, the food delicious, and of course the company perfect – I felt like Marie Antoinette.

The Antiques Diva®
Wow! Tres Diva!! I’ve never been but feel like I must book to dine there with my husband! Now, I happen to know you and I share another passion besides French food – antiques! What are your secret sources in Paris?

Belle Inspiration:
Being I am an antique lover I found a sweet antique/brocante shop, Passy Brocante, in a courtyard just off rue Passy in the 16 arrondissement. It is a large space, just right for rummaging through all the treasures. There is also a rustic, wood-paneled dining room by the entrance. If you call ahead for reservations, the owner will cook a special lunch just for you. It is a pleasant way to spend a few hours with friends – dining and antiquing.

The Antiques Diva®
You’re full of great tips!! This is a total insider’s source. With all this knowledge I can see why you decided you needed to share your information. How did the idea to create a magazine come about?

Belle Inspiration:
I have always had a dream of creating a magazine. After beginning my blog Bonjour Romance and getting to know the wonderful world of Blogland, I decided to just go for it. We launched Belle Inspiration Magazine in September 2010 and have never looked back. The Belle Team is a talented group of contributors who are busy writing and photographing their way around the world. Our motto is ‘Celebrating La Joie de Vivre’. Belle Inspiration is currently offered in a digital format, but soon to be released in print! It has been an incredible adventure, and I love every minute of it.

The Antiques Diva®
Mimi, you’re such an inspiration! How can Diva Readers subscribe to your publication?

Belle Inspiration:
You can subscribe by visiting out website at Belle Inspiration.

The Antiques Diva®
Merci Beaucoup Mimi for being “The Diva of the Day” at The Antiques Diva® & Co!

Until next time – keep fulfilling your dreams,
The Antiques Diva®

Book a Tour

The Antiques Diva & Co offers custom planned Antiques Buying Tours for tourists and trade professionals. Whether you’re looking to buy one specific piece or wanting to fill an entire container, our personal shopping antique buying guides share their vast knowledge of secret sources to take you to all the right places.

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