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Posts Tagged ‘Tours’

This season we cruised again with families. Already for years we propose a special ‘children’s itinerary’ for groups up to eight on L’Etoile. A big hit, and I really enjoy to do these cruises myself. L’Etoile has a little plunge pool on deck, lot’s of games, and the atmosphere is casual. When I purchased the 20 pax barge L’Estello last year, I hoped it would be possible to cruise with families on this barge too. I imagined three-generation parties, grandparents, their children and grand children meeting on L’Estello, using the barge as their home in France for a week…

L'Estello on the River Rhone

It worked, and I hope you enjoy reading this comment:

‘In a word, it was PERFECTION! Cobie and her team were warm and welcoming from the moment we boarded the barge. The accommodations were excellent and the beds were very comfortable. The food was well prepared, beautifully presented and plentiful. Cobie prepared platters for the children so that each parent could serve their own children, taking into account their likes and dislikes and portion sizes. Adults were served individually.

The sightseeing and biking activities were perfectly tailored, taking into consideration that we had three children between the ages of three and four children ages seven to twelve. Cobie, Nico, her assistant, and Christian, the captain, were always flexible with regard to meal times and sightseeing requests. They even babysat the children for one night when we had an adult dinner at a local restaurant in Arles.

When we left this morning Cobie asked if there was anything that she could have done to make the trip any better. I’m sorry to disappoint her but our trip was 110%! And you can certainly share this email for marketing purposes).

Our family would happily and unconditionally recommend your services and L’Estello with enthusiasm. Good luck with your business and the impending new addition to your family. And a very big “thank you” for arranging this wonderful holiday for us.’

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I am once again leaving the US again today. But before I go, I want to express my gratitude to everyone who made this visit so enjoyable and such a success. I love to talk about my barge, french cuisine and France and you were a wonderful and willing audience – from Jennifer at Belle Epoch Travel in San Diego, to all the agents at Casto Travel in San Francisco and to everyone who opened their homes to me. I enjoyed being with you so!

I would also like to thank all people from The Landings on Skidaway Island for coming to my reception. I felt honoured by your interest. After running an advertisement for several weeks in a local newsletter, the plan was made to give a reception, including wine and cheese, and provide an opportunity to meet and ask about ‘barge cruising in France’. Lots of people showed up! It was great to understand,that most of you had already looked at my web site www.hbcruises.com Thank you also for all your questions about the food, the itineraries, the crew, the en-suite cabins, private parties and more! You made it easy for me to talk about it, so far away from it!

One frequently asked question I would like to explain here: ‘What is actually a barge?’

For me, the term “barge” does not adequately describe the comfortable living quarters guests enjoy.  This former steamboat, built in the late 19th century, has been lovingly restored, keeping as much as possible, her traditional look. Guests enjoy our flat screen TV, I-pod docking station, a library of books and DVD’s and bicycles to ride along the footpaths that are part of the French country lifestyle.

I personally emphasize the fact that barge cruising on L’Etoile is customized, and catered to your needs, a personal approach, it is all about you, and for you!

I would like to thank all people helping me to make this reception possible, including the Savannah Sommelier Kevin Smith for being so kind to put up a flyer for this reception. When I walked into his shop, I was greeted with ‘Hi Cobie’, now, that feels very welcome! I was impressed by his very good selection of French wines and was excited to see wines in his shop from the Burgundy region where L’Etoile cruises! A very nice Meursault, Volnay, Santenay, Puligny-Montrachet, all places we can go touring while cruising this itinerary!

A big ‘Thank you all for coming.’ I certainly hope to receive you on my barge!

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Climbing in Sete

Climbing in Sete

Last summer we cruised several times with children on board. These cruises were delightful and very much appreciated. I so much enjoyed to cruise with these happy families, that I decided to write a special itinerary for families with children. You can check this out on our  cruise itineraries. We already booked our first family cruise 2009!

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It has been a long, long time ago I wrote something on this blog. I cannot believe, almost another cruising season ending! There are so many stories to tell, I find it difficult where to start. This season I cruised mainly in beautiful Provence and in the natural park of the Camargue and it has been great! The flamingos showed themselves each cruise and several times we were really lucky to see them flying over the barge. One of our guests succeeded to take great pictures, hopefully I will receive them one day, I cannot wait to add them on the web site.

Flamingos of the Camargue

We still have two barge cruises lined up, very special, L’Etoile will cruise in tandem with other barges. Next week we will receive a group of 22 people and the week after 13 people, I will tell you all about it after those weeks! This Sunday we will depart from Avignon and cruise towards Agde on the Canal du Midi. The next week we start our cruise in Marseillan on the Etang du Tau and cruise along the oyster beds towards Beaucaire on the Canal du Rhone a Sete.We are looking forward to these weeks, cruising, special tours on request, it is all possible!

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Welcome to my blog. I hope you will help me out by reading and commenting often, as I love to hear from my friends – both old and new.

Today I am leaving Atlanta on my way back to Burgundy. I have been here 3 weeks working with my web designer on my new and improved web site. I hope you like it!

As soon as I am home and unpacked – I will post again and tell you all about the new itineraries for 2007, my life in the off-season, and other things.

Until then – A Bientot!

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