We write from the northeastern French countryside where we are making our home for the week in our two-story traditional townhome, surrounded by lush green meadows and golf courses.
|Nearby meadowland - France|
|Street signs showing the way to our Marriott Villag|
Much more appealing to us is the fact we are smack-dab between two very real French villages – Bailly-Romainvilliers and Magny Le Hongre. Each hamlet is walking distance from our doorstep and offers traditional boulangeries, cafes, grocery stores, fruit and meat markets.
|Our home for the week|
Our townhome for the week is on the left side of the building in the photo above. Our neighbors are from Dublin. Ours is one of dozens of two- and three-bedroom townhomes in the Marriott Vacation Club d’lle-de-France. It is, in other words, one of their timeshare or interval ownership properties.
Now before those skeptics among you quit reading because I’ve said those dastardly words: timeshare, let me tell you that timeshares aren’t what they used to be.
This stay, our first here, in fact is proving they really can be quite luxurious.
|Kitchen, living and dining room. French doors open to the patio and lawn.|
Our main floor consists of a dining and living room, a fully quipped kitchen, a laundry room off of it, and a half bath off the entryway foyer.The stairway from the foyer leads to two bedrooms, each with its own bathroom.
What brought us here was one of our favorite features of timeshare life: ability to trade what you own for some new place in the world. We own at Marriott’s timeshare property at KoOlina on the west side of O’ahu, one of the islands in Hawaii. Our units there called ‘lock off’ units meaning you can use the large size unit (think 1-bedroom condo) and lock-off the second bedroom (think oversized hotel room with wet bar, microwave and small refrigerator) and basically get a two-week stay for the price of a one-week, two-bedroom purchase.
It was one of our ‘hotel-sized room weeks we traded for this spacious townhome.
|Along our route to the lobby|
Our timeshare ownership in Hawaii has allowed us to trade time for stays at Marriott Vacation Clubs in Bangkok, Thailand, Spain's Costa del Sol and Phoenix, Arizona as well as here. A highpoint of each property is the amazing landscaping - but I think this place has raised the bar on landscaping.
Our townhome is in a section of the development called Giverny, and fans of Monet know that many of his paintings were of his Giverny home and gardens. In tribute to him they have created here a replica of them on this part of the development.
|Almost Monet's gardens|
So I did the math on this stay and checking rates here for a week-long stay in June as we are doing, we’d be paying about 300-euros a night; 2,100, for the week which equates to about one year’s maintenance fees at our home resort. The cost of the trade fee was less than $200 and we’ve still got a week left to use in ‘the big side’ of our Hawaiian timeshare. All in all a good travel deal.
|Pool area, lobby, bistro restaurant|
For those considering a stay here: The resort offers a shuttle service to Disneyland and to the RER train station, about four miles away. It is about 10 minutes to Disneyland and from the train station Paris is 50-minutes away. A week-long train pass – Pass Navigo Semaine – allows travel on trains, metro and buses in Paris as well as this rural area for about 27 euros a person.
That’s it from this side ‘of the pond’ this week. I know I promised a report on our Greek road to residency but it turns out we haven’t moved any further along it than we were last week. Perhaps extending our time in Greece until the end of June will result in a conclusion of the journey before we return to the States. .. then again, maybe not. . .
Safe travels to you all and thanks so much for the time you spent with us at 'Village Marriott'. Hope to see you back again next week!
Linking up with:
Through My Lens
Our World Tuesday
Travel Photo Thursday –
Weekend Travel Inspiration