Returning to La Bégude, Fred’s father’s home in Provence after thirteen years is like returning to a dream you’ve had before. Much is familiar – the tree-lined driveway, Marcia’s welcoming smile, the waft of cigarettes, the swimming pool sparkling like a patchwork piece of the Mediterranean; but much has changed: the hedges are thicker, the vines framing the doorway are more established, Marc is thinner and – holy shit – cute little 5-year-old Antoine is now a handsome young man with perfect stubble and a rosé in hand.
If there is one constant here in Castellet, Provence it is the sheer beauty (and quantity) of the food we are treated to: foie gras, roast lamb, crisp green salad and peaches drenched with red wine at Marc and Marcia’s; bowls of delicately-flavoured sardine, aubergine, tuna and goat’s cheese dips with toasted baguette at Café de France in Lacoste village; and the stunning dinner dear Caro Nigella’ed up in her kitchen tonight (more on that in a moment).
I rented gorgeous Parisian art director and textile designer Aurèlia Paoli’s chic Les Halles apartment this week. The apartment is around the corner from the best street in Paris, Rue Montorgueil, an authentic, cobbled, all-day market street where fashionable Parisians shop and socialize.
Aurèlia (34) has turned her love of art and design into a textiles business, Beauregard Paris (www.beauregardparis.com). Her specialty is a range of unique graphic cement tiles you can see in the apartment pictures. Although Aurèlia experimented with various aspects of design – initially studying fashion design – her heart has always been in the arts. I wanted to know more about her journey: