Thursday, October 28, 2010

Villa Arnaga, welcome to Versailles in the Basque country

 Something is wrong with this picture. Here we are, in the basque back yard, in front of a basque exterior. But the garden makes me think of Versailles and once you step into the house you could be in a Parisian palace...

Edmond Rostand created the Villa Arnaga and this garden. He came to  Cambo-les-Bains in 1900 to cure a lung problem. For the exterior he followed the Basque customs, in new-basque style, but the the garden and the interior are designed in classic French style. (In case you don't know;  Rostand is the guy who wrote the famous piece Cyrano de Bergerac).

The children loved the garden and found the house beautiful. We spent more time outdoors than indoors, but in the house - now a museum - they liked the paintings in the budoir, the childrens room with illustrations to known childrens' songs and the trap door... unfortunately it was forbidden to take any photos inside the house.

The whole entrace alley was lined with beautiful faned hortensias. Must be spectacular when they are blooming!

Looks totally Basque. Go inside and see the beautiful stone walls, the iron sculpted handrail, the set wooden parquet, the light and the volumes... and the hand painted wall decorations.... pure luxury.

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