The Town by the Lake, Aix-Les-Bains

For the last couple of years I have spent my holidays seeing Europe by train and trekking to gorgeous little towns around France and Italy. One of my particular favourites has had to be the town of Aix-Les-Bains, nestled quietly next to the towering Alps and the beautiful Lac Du Bourget in France.

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The weather here can be changeable and on the couple of occasions I have visited it has been prone to some quite fantastic thunderstorms! More specifically after our arrival it seemed to pour with rain as soon as we’d walked into the hotel lobby! We also had a bbq one evening which resulted in a quick dash inside when the first spots of a heavy shower started to plop onto our plates.

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For those who are keen cyclists the location is perfect and the nearby Chambery is the finishing point for Stage 9 of the 2017 Tour De France. Routes close to Aix-Les-Bains include Col Du Chat and the renowned Mont Du Chat, for those who would like more of a challenge and is also to be featured on the 2017 Tour de France.

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For those who like to explore on two feet, I recommend taking a trip down to Lac Du Bourget and what better way to get there than by miniature train which leaves the Hotel De Ville throughout the day. This is a perfect way to see the town – the commentary is mostly in French – but it is still wonderful to see the beautiful scenery on the way down to the lakeside. Once by the lake you have the opportunity to walk for miles, there are lovely areas to sit and relax as well as wonderful bars and restaurants which I’m sure would be open in an evening to watch the world go by.

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Although there are not many chain stores here, it is a beautiful town to stroll around at a leisurely pace, visiting the various independent stores. I bought some stunning shoes in one of the stores – a gorgeous pair of pastel coloured wedges. I had a wonderful morning enjoying some retail therapy and planning my dream French maison!

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If you are looking for a fabulous hotel in which to base yourself for the duration of your stay then definitely take a look at the Golden Tulip. With recently refurbished spa facilities it is the perfect place to relax and rest those aching feet from all that retail therapy. The large bar and reception area is perfect for chilling out – reading a book or catching up with the latest on the Tour De France on their widescreen TVs.

If you are looking for a town where you can truly practice your French. This is the place to go. I had quite an experience in a French lingerie shop where as it happened I had a brief lapse in remembering any French bar the words ‘tres chaud’ and manically trying to mime how hot the weather was outside.. fortunately the two French ladies were extremely excited about the fact that I was even attempting to speak their language – a very amusing experience by both parties involved!

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Becky

Pretty & Petit

 

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Memories of 2015

2015 has been a year of some fabulous memories..

Small Businesses of 2015

I have featured some fabulous small businesses over 2015!

Achievements of 2015

  • Organisation of the 10th Anniversary Awards for the Fashion Retail Academy
  • Completing Race for Life
  • View from the Shard
  • Winning a competition for a trip to Dubai and shopping vouchers for Dancewear Central through blog writing
  • Passed my theory test
  • My first tattoo

Travels of 2015

  • France – Nice, Aix-En-Provence, Aix-Les-Bains, Paris, Tour De France, Versailles and Disneyland
  • Mykonos
  • Bristol (Twice!)
  • Southampton
  • Kent

Events of 2015

  • Cinderella Exhibition
  • The Ideal Home Show
  • London Bike Show
  • My friend’s beautiful wedding at Kent Life
  • London Fashion Weekend
  • Wonderful blogger events, product launches, chocolate making workshop, Big Bloggers Conference, Beautycon, Xmas Party, Food Festival
  • West End Live
  • Wireless
  • Pure London
  • The Cycle Show, Birmingham
  • Design Your Future and Skills London (FRA)
  • Beauty Blogger Awards 2015 & Olympia Beauty
  • Louis Vuitton Series 3 Exhibition
  • BFI London Film Festival – The Program
  • My friend’s beautiful wedding in Whitstable
  • Made London
  • Clothes Show
  • Winter Wonderland

Films of 2015

  • Furious 7
  • Fifty Shades of Grey
  • The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
  • Pitch Perfect 2
  • Spy
  • Spectre
  • Star Wars

Style of 2015

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What are your fave memories of 2015? I’d love to hear them!

Wishing you all a most fabulous and wonderful 2016 and will leave you with some memories of last years fireworks from London.

Becky at Pretty & Petit

Dear Paris,

I am so truly sorry.

We will all unite for you, whoever we are, we will support you and be there for whatever you need.

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Paris is just one city, we must remember that there are people all over the world being caused pain by these atrocious acts on a daily basis. I encourage you as a citizen of this wonderful, amazing, vibrant world to look deeper. To look beyond the face of the media, the Western portrayals that the media wants you to see, to look further into what is happening in countries all over the world including Africa and the Middle East.

Facebook has asked us to change our profile photos temporarily to a French flag and whilst I truly feel devastated for these particular attacks, I want to keep my profile photo filled with colour. Filled with every colour of every flag to represent every country that has ever been inflicted with pain from these utterly pointless attacks on our human race.

Our Paris, you are beautiful. Our World, you are beautiful.

Please stop destroying our beautiful world.

It’s time to stop now.

Becky at Pretty & Petit

The Program Film Review

When I think of Lance Armstrong I think of three things, cycling, the Tour de France and doping.

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I used to love cycling when I was younger and was out on my bike every night after school. I never really thought of it as a hobby though – just something fun to do. Eventually as I grew older I found other interests, music and dance in particular, so my passion for cycling dwindled away at that point. Now I’m out of education and have been settled in a job for the past few years I have started to get more interested in it again. In the summer of 2015 I even got to witness first hand the excitement of the final stage of the Tour de France in Paris and even though it was pouring with rain, it was still so exhilarating and amazing to watch. When watching a race like that first hand, you notice the true passion these riders have for their sport. Cycling is their life.

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The program, which held its premiere at the BFI London Film Festival last night, tells the story of Lance Armstrong, his rise to glory and the doping scandal that engulfed his highly successful career. Based on the book, Seven Deadly Sins by David Walsh, Chief Sports Writer of The Sunday Times it looks at the relationship between these two characters and provides an account of the events that took place leading up to and post his confession on the Oprah Winfrey show in 2013.

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In a Q&A with the cast and director, after watching the film it was interesting to hear how David Walsh had spoken to people after they had watched various screenings of the film to discover their reactions to find them somewhat having empathy with Lance. This may have something to do with the cancer, Walsh stated, but as was said in the film, he was ultimately using his disease as a shield. It is at this point I should mention that of course cancer is the most terrible of diseases and of course I do sympathise as what he must have gone through would have been one of the most horrific times of his life. Ultimately his career was about doping and whilst I did not feel the empathy with Lance, I did feel it for David. It was admirable to hear how he stuck with his beliefs even though no one else believed him.

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I found this film difficult to watch. Despite some mixed reviews coming out today, I have no doubt that it was an enjoyable film – I can tell I enjoy a film when I don’t feel like I’m clock watching at all. There were a few laughs shared and I definitely think Chris O’Dowd playing David Walsh and Ben Foster playing Lance Armstrong are what made the film. To be honest though, I felt a bit flat coming out of it. I initially thought it was in regard to how I felt about the responses the director, Stephen Frears, was providing to his questions. It felt as though he had made the movie because he felt like it needed to be made and wanted to get there first. I felt frustrated by his responses and felt that the film and the story, deserved so much more than that. This one man had cheated his way to the top SEVEN times without intense questioning. I think it was at this point that I really felt my empathy for David Walsh. I didn’t really feel anything about Lance when the stories were breaking in the news at the time. I didn’t know enough about the sport to pass judgement – I just knew it was wrong. To witness his portrayal by Foster though, to witness his arrogance and his greed to win, made me feel disappointed and well, heartbroken really. Cycling is a sport, it should be enjoyed by those who have a passion for it and whilst I think Lance’s career started with that passion, he clearly lost that when his greed for the win took over.

The Program is in cinemas now. A must for any cyclist enthusiast!

Becky at Pretty & Petit

#LoveMe Challenge – Day 9

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Share something beautiful

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This is an image of Lac du Bourget in France. I found it such a beautiful and inspiring place to relax and chill out for a few days. Do you have a place you like to go to feel stress free and inspired??

Becky at Pretty & Petit