New Look, New Feel, New Products,
and New Opportunities!
Spring is a time for new beginnings, and French Detours is blossoming with a new look and feel! Meeting new people and exploring new places gave birth to fresh ideas, products and itineraries. Let's take a tour of our new French Detours! It begins with our new logo ...
The minute I was introduced to web designer Nicole Althaus, I knew we needed to collaborate! Having no artistic ability myself, I was delighted that she could see my vision clearly, and then add her creative flare to make everything come alive! We hope you will find the new website full of charm and whimsy, as well as packed with useful information. In our excitement to launch the new site, please know that we have many more ideas that will come to light in the coming months. Subscribe to the website to be the first to know about new additions!
We have always loved filling our Boutique with unique, artisan products. You may have noticed that some of our products are no longer available. Confinement made it difficult for many artisans to ship their limited products abroad. We are starting fresh with some old favorites (we simply can't live without Castelas Olive Oils!) as well as adding many new product lines. Travels this fall, especially to the "Made in France" salon in Paris, provided endless inspiration! The boutique is now made up of two parts: The Essentials (Les Incontournables), which will always be in stock, and limited edition Gift Baskets (Coffrets Cadeaux) that will change on a regular basis. We will also do "pop up" boutiques two or more times a year. These will be announced in the "Learn" section, and our subscribers will always be notified first!
We all have different travel styles and comfort levels. My husband explores Europe with a carry on bag and no plan at all. I am a bit more high maintenance, having a fairly specific agenda and reserving hotels in advance. However, I do like wandering by car so I can take a detour when I stumble upon something interesting. Some of our friends prefer a guided tour where everything is taken care of, and all you have to do is show up with a passport! There are benefits to each kind of travel, and I have had lovely trips of each type.
If the first option sounds best to you, take our tips and hit the road! For those wanting both structure and freedom, we have self-guided itineraries for purchase that you can either follow to the T, or customize as you wish. There is a detailed itinerary, spelling out everything, day-by-day, as well as different options to choose from. We tell you where to go, how to get there, and offer activities, accommodations and restaurants for every taste. We begin with Normandy and Provence, but will continue to add new itineraries for each of the 13 regions.
Our "Learn" section is dedicated to sharing 2 of my passions :
- French language and Culture
While I love our online boutique, there is something about seeing products in person. You can pick them up and see and feel the quality; as well as sample food products (yum!) Shopping used to be a sensory experience, and a social one as well. I miss that, so we will continue to do Pop-Up shops from time to time, as it is just a joy!
A former French teacher (and research geek) I l enjoy nothing more than learning more about language and culture, and then sharing it! During confinement we learned to connect via Zoom with people in every corner of the world, and it is still a great way to share travel tips. Watch for these virtual workshops, as well as in person events.
Do you ever dream of what it would be like to live in France? We are delighted to share our new home with you! We had a coup de coeur with an apartment on the French Riviera in Nice, and while we are not there, you can be! With a stunning view of the Mediterranean and the Promenade des Anglais, you can enjoy your apéro on the balcony, watching the tourists scurrying by. The concierge service will make sure you have all of the comforts of home!
French Detours began with videos. Having artisans share their passion and savoir-faire is the best way to discover regional specialties and what makes each area unique. They take us behind the scenes, and share travel tips that only locals would know. It is such a joy and a privilege to meet with them! We will continue to make new videos, but you can find past videos on our YouTube channel.
I have been a subscriber to France magazine for more years than I can remember, so I am honored to be a contributor now as well. Collaborating with talented artist Isabelle Skoog, we map out the regional specialties in the various regions. Look for our articles in various issues, as well as our Boutique donating the prizes for the "Star Letter" for the next year!
It has been a time of reflection and growth for French Detours, and I hope you are feeling newly inspired to travel and spread your wings as well! Thank you for being a part of our journey!