Famous for being one of the most beautiful villages of Provence, Saint Paul de Vence nestled behind the ramparts of the 16th century atop a rocky outcrop. The sublime and the particular brightness of St. Paul site have continued to attract artists who find a frame at once relaxing and inspiring.
The village is ideally discovered during a walk: the heart of the pedestrian city invites you to stroll, according to the small architectural treasures and relics of the past. The cobbled streets since the 1950s bring a unique charm to the old town.
At the heart of Saint Paul de Vence, the Charles de Gaulle square is home Provencal bowling ground: a shady bowling old plane trees which saw play people like Lino Ventura and Yves Montand. At the edge of the field, the famous inn of the Golden Dove, meeting place of Montand and Simone Signoret, has hosted poets and renowned artists such as Prévert, Chagall, Miro, Braque Caesar.
The entry into the fortified village is by the door of Vence, defensive work of the 16th century. The construction of the ramparts of Saint Paul de Vence was commissioned by François 1st, who saw a strategic border site in the balance of power which opposed Charles Quint. On the side of the door of Nice, a sublime view over the vineyards, olive groves and the Mediterranean offers visitors. The village cemetery contains the tomb of the painter Chagall, to whom we owe the ceiling of the Opera Garnier.
Walking through the streets and alleys, you can admire the mansions and beautiful 16th century houses, visiting art galleries and artists' studios, stroll through designer boutiques or local craft products.
Intimate and rejuvenating, the plot, old market square, houses a refreshing fountain that feeds a former washhouse. Near the house of Simone Signoret and Yves Montand is in the rise of Castre.
The Collegiate Church, built in height, dominates the small walled town. Built and rebuilt between the 14th and 18th century, it houses the remarkable St Clement chapel, a true masterpiece of Baroque work. In the same square are the main landmarks of Saint Paul de Vence: The old castle dungeon in which are now installed municipal services, but also the chapel of the penitents, walls painted the artist Jean-Michel Folon.
The visit to the Local History Museum provides information on the various events in Saint-Paul-de-Vence in past centuries. wax dummies created by the workshops of the Musee Grevin enliven the tour in period costumes. We meet including François 1st, Vauban, or Queen Jeanne.
Must the artist village of Saint Paul de Vence, the Maeght Foundation is dedicated to contemporary art. It has one of Europe's largest collections of works of 20th century art, with paintings, sculptures and drawings by Joan Miro, Braque, Bonnard, Kandinsky, Fernand Léger and Giacometti, among many other artists of the modern era. The Foundation's website, itself a work of art in the open air is an architectural creation of the Catalan Sert, whom renowned artists collaborated. Outside are thus discover the Sculpture Garden, the Georges Braque pond and fish mosaic, Giacometti courtyard, or the Miro maze. Facing the sculpture garden, an original cafe offers visitors to refresh or lunch in a relaxing atmosphere and decor including furniture by Diego Giacometti, sculptor and designer brother Alberto Giacometti.