Perfect French apartment rentals
PUBLISHED: 16:05 10 June 2015
Discover the vibrant foodie French capital Lyon with an apartment rental from Appart-Ambiance.com
If Paris is a woman in a black dress with pearls, then Lyon is the mother you return to visit for home cooked meals and comfort. Comfort as long as you don’t eat too much, which is hard to accomplish in Lyon, the gastronomic capital of France. Take advantage of the gastronomy by learning to cook French fare. A perfect vacation rental in Lyon from Appart-Ambiance.com offers the same charm as a boutique hotel but with more space, more rooms and a large kitchen available at the same cost (and often even less).
Save your expensive Auberge du Pont de Collonges restaurant for lunch service, where the meals are as grand as they are inexpensive. Take in some breakfasts at a traditional Lyonnais bouchon, but cook dinner at home. Either take a cooking class at Plum Lyon, where you’ll learn (in English) how to turn market food into Quenelle de brochet or croissants, or simply go it alone and choose easy-to-make dishes, by heading to the covered Les Halles Paul Bocuse (especially on a rainy day) or the Saint-Antoine markets. Listen to the merchants calling out deals and you will finally experience France the way it was meant to be experienced.
Get ready to be inundated with the sites and smells. Fruits, vegetables, seafood, Bresse chickens, eggs from chickens raised outdoors, gratin dauphinois and gratin de cardon, saucisson beaujolais and saucisson brioché, rosette, Jésus de Lyon, thinly sliced Parma ham, and cheeses of Lyon: Saint-Marcellin or the smoother Saint-Félicien, or Lyon Tomme du Beaujolais or Fourme de Montbrison, and Rigotte de Condrieu. Don’t forget to stop by a wine shop on your way home to complement your meal with a bottle of Beaujolais (a Lyon specialty) or a Rhône (think steep hills with vineyards!) It’s all French on a plate that you can take back to your apartment and eat while sitting on a balcony overlooking a quaint courtyard.
Taking a historical tour of a city – whether guided or on your own – is better done in an apartment rather than a hotel. Break away from the tourists and live the French life with a vacation apartment rental in Lyon from Appart-Ambiance.com. Visiting the 10th century St. Paul Church or the medieval and picturesque Montée du Gourguillon or seeing the 5th century sarcophagi at the St Irénée church takes on a special meaning when you return back to modern apartments that offer the same feeling of the city, itself – some with old French beams or working stone fireplaces or history books lining the walls. Plus, how lovely not to trip over your suitcases when you return from a long day of touring! And for the history fanatics, you’ll be doing a lot of touring.
The areas of Lyon you’ll want to visit the most are in the Presqu’île –a UNESCO World Heritage Site (meaning, an important cultural area pledged by all countries to belong to everyone in the world). Consider renting a Vélo’v and biking your way through history – or just take mass transit (always easy and fast). Literally wind your way through the Middle ages, the Byzantine era, the Renaissance, and the Classics, but don’t expect to do this in a straight line, because the history comes in surprises at each turn. See the gothic styled St. Jean Cathedral, the Renaissance courtyards of Maison du Chamarier and Maison du Crible where you’ll find the famous “Pink Tower,” the Roman theatres, Amphithéâtre des Trois Gaules, and the 19th century elaborate and eclectic Fourvière Basilica - compared to an elephant with its feet up - just to start.
Take the funicular to Croix-Rousse and be sure to see the Traboules – passageways that lead to gorgeous crazy colors of reds, magentas, oranges, terracottas, and crazy stairs and doors. Especially do not miss the passageway Impasse Turquet, where wooden-balconied houses date back to the 13th and 14th century. And there are murals to be seen: the Mur des Canuts and the Mur des Lyonnais. And – yes, an Eiffel Tower - the Metal Tower (a replica), built on a high hill by those who wanted to show that Lyon was not all about religion.
There’s this and more, and to complete your tour through time, end up at the Industrial Revolution cum Green Revolution of the Confluence, where both the Saône and Rhône rivers meet, and where you can visit La Sucrière – the modern cultural center and museum. Then head back to your apartment and kick your feet up to unwind and plan your next day of adventure.
If you’re looking for a romantic vacation, a vacation apartment rental in Lyon is the perfect place to start. Each Appart-Ambiance.com apartment is different, but all have what exceptional living spaces have - the airiness, the space, the sunshine, the quality furniture and the little details: modern chandeliers and scones with French sculptured tips, terracotta tiles in the kitchen, high ceilings next to tall French windows, spacious bathrooms with a modern sink bowls, a subtle mural over this bed or in that kitchen, the interesting textures and linens found on the sofas, the pillows, the curtains. Some of the apartments have upstairs bedrooms overlooking pretty courtyards, like the Jacobins with old world everything and a balcony fit for a glorious morning breakfast.
The Fleurieu with its red brassiere kitchen on a cul-de-sac near the Musee des Tissus et des Arts Décoratifs is a real find. The three room Duplat with its little touches of brilliant colors - reds, citrus, spring green - accenting the whites and woods with ceiling to floor windows and book cases, parquet floors, stainless steel appliances, a cutting -block-everything kitchen - and a gigantic leather sofa you’ll never want to leave – is perfect for the romantically inclined. (Plus, a crib only the French can do!) One block from the Saône River with the Rhône not too far away, this, like all Appart’Ambiance apartments, is all about gorgeousness and location, location, location.
After spending a long morning in a bed under exquisitely comfortable linen sheets and a breakfast sent directly to your apartment (one of the lovely benefits of renting here), you’ll want to head out and explore the city as only lovers can do – with fun and childlike eyes!
Try some tours. Get silly on a Segway tour, or a covered bicycle tour on a Cyclopolitain, or a three-hour treasure hunt through beautiful alleyways with a Quiveutpister tour. But maybe best of all is the Trolley des Lumières tour, where you explore Lyon while you dine in an old-fashioned trolley that serves three Lyonnais courses on linen tables. And do consider a full-day Kanpai Tour of the Beaujolais region and the medieval town of Pérouges.
Take a self-made photo walking tour through the quartier Renaissance Saint Jean (the signs and tiny details are charming) and window shop, window shop, window shop. Then head to the Presqu’île (the peninsula) - just walk around and take it all in. Everything is within walking distance of everything here. Plus, this is where the good nightlife is.
Or do some shopping so you can buy cool things to take home. Printemps or Galeries Lafayette, upscale, very French department stores. Or go very downscale French by visiting Tati - a fun, cheap, cheesy bargain store. Monoprix is a French version of a Target (with groceries), and Goodson is a place to find silly gifts.
And if you’re looking for sweets for the sweet, try La Jolie Boutique Sucrée (think Willy Wonka gone French) or Voisin, for upscale chocolates. Stop at Darjeeling for real oo-la-la lingerie happiness. After all that shopping, a visit to the Spa Au Bout du Monde is in store – for an amazing body massage. Then head back to the apartment and stay a while.