Provence: Lifestyle Explorations
June 21 – July 13, 2014
Immerse yourself for three weeks and experience Provençal living in the vibrant town of Aix-en-Provence during AHI’s International Lifestyle Explorations small group program. Throughout this authentic introduction to living abroad, you will reside in your own apartment in Aix’s beautiful Old Town, and will be paired with an experienced Lifestyle Guide four days each week who will connect you with the people, places and skills needed should you choose to pursue independent living in France. Broaden your awareness of the lifestyle, customs and history with included and optional seminars, language lessons, cooking and art classes. Share a home-cooked meal and enjoy wine-tastings, Friday night mixers and inspiring hikes. See lavender fields, lively markets, and lovely villages on excursions to the Luberon valley, Avignon, Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Marseille. Celebrate your accomplishments with a gala and graduation dinner. This unique French adventure includes an extensive meal plan, furnished accommodations, a French cell phone, cable, Internet and independent leisure time.
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The vibrant town of Aix-en-Provence is one of the top retirement havens for those seeking to spend extensive time overseas. AHI’s pioneering International Lifestyle Explorations program provides an authentic, extended introduction to living abroad and helps participants build the skills they will need should they decide to pursue this lifestyle on their own. Reside in your own apartment in Aix’s beautiful and historic Old Town for four weeks. Enjoy language instruction combined with an immersion in the lifestyle, customs, history and cuisine of Provence, courtesy of our accomplished and experienced Lifestyle Guides. We will connect you with the people and places of the region with an extensive program including activities and optional opportunities from local excursions to cooking and painting classes to inspiring hikes through the beautiful Provenҫal countryside. Each day rewards you with deepened insight and the joy of accomplishment.
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Note: The information presented is preliminary. Itineraries, included features and schedules are subject to change. Many excursions in this program involve an element of walking.
(+) Provided for Air program participants.
(#) Each cell phone will have a EURO 10 credit that can be used for local or international calls. You may purchase additional time as needed.
*Art, Hiking, and Cooking classes are available at an additional cost.
Adagio Aix-en-Provence Center
This exciting French immersion experience is grounded in comfort and convenience. Your home away from home is on a peaceful street in the Old Town of Aix-en-Provence. Newly renovated, modern and stylish, the apartment building is a short stroll from the fountains and cafés of Cours Mirabeau. Groceries, bakeries, a pharmacy and other convenience stores are located just around the corner. The well-equipped studios and one- or two- bedroom apartments all feature satellite TV, broadband Internet access and a kitchen with a stove, a microwave oven, dishwasher, an electric coffeemaker and tableware. Best of all, you will have 24 hour access to many services, including 24-hour reception desk, weekly cleaning service, a self-service laundry and dry cleaning services. This is a unique opportunity to combine independence with easy support services.
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DAY 1 In Transit
Depart your gateway city for Marseille aboard scheduled jet service. (+)
Upon arrival, transfer (+) to Aix-en-Provence and the Adagio Aix-en-Provence Centre. After settling into your apartment, attend a briefing with your AHI Travel Director who will ensure you are fully informed about the program. In addition, you will be given a French cell phone (#) you use throughout your stay. Enjoy an orientation tour of Aix, and a Welcome Reception and Dinner.
Continue your exploration of Aix. Those participating in the art program have their first of seven classes. Enjoy a lecture on the history of Provence during an in-depth walking tour of this beautiful city. Lunch and dinner will be served at local restaurants.
Meet your Lifestyle Guide and have your first language lesson at the International Language Institute (IS). This afternoon, visit local markets with your Lifestyle Guide and hone your skills in buying groceries and other supplies. Each Tuesday through Friday, experience Aix through your language lessons and excursions with your own. Lunches with local university students provide a great opportunity to practice your French skills and learn more about Provence. Choose to participate in the first of two cooking classes.* On Wednesday, hikers will participate in the first of three walks .
Kick off each three-day weekend with a Friday night mixer at a local café, where you can engage in conversation with your fellow travelers.
Enjoy time to explore Aix and its surroundings. Hikers will participate in their first of three walks.* On Sunday, join us for an excursion to beautiful villages of the Luberon. Visit lively markets and a country estate renowned for its gardens and vineyards. Cap off the evening with dinner at Val Joanis. On Monday enjoy a lecture on The Art of Provence.
Through your lessons, continue your immersion into the language and culture of Provence. On Tuesday evening, enjoy a seminar and tasting of wines from Provence.
Saturday is at leisure o explore Aix or relax at a café along Cours Mirabeau. 0N Sunday, visit Marseille. Take in sweeping views from Notre-Dame de la Garde church and explore the bustling marina of the Old Port. Sample local specialties during lunch in Marseille. On Monday, travel to the lovely town of Avignon, set on the Rhône River, and explore the impressive Palace of the Popes. After lunch, continue to visit Pont du Gard, an impressive three-tiered aqueduct built by the Romans in 19 B.C.
Through your lectures, classes, and daily life in Aix, continue to broaden your awareness of Provenҫal culture.
Enjoy your last day in Aix at leisure. This evening celebrate your French adventure and accomplishments with a gala Farewell Reception held in a private home and a Graduation Ceremony and Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant.
DAY 23 In Transit
Transfer to the airport for the return flight to your gateway city.
Price and Program Inclusions:
Per person prices begin at $4,995
- Three weeks’ accommodations in a fully furnished, modernly appointed apartment in central Old Town of Aix-en-Provence; includes weekly cleaning service, cable television and broadband Internet access.
- A meal program, including three breakfasts, five lunches and six dinners.
- Festive Welcome Reception and Dinner in a local restaurant.
- Farewell Reception at a private home.
- Graduation Ceremony and Dinner at a restaurant in Aix.
Activities and Events
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- Three educational lectures that will introduce you to the history, art and wine of Provence.
- Guided orientation tour of Aix-en-Provence.
- Educational Seminar Series provided by local experts.
- Learn the language and culture of Provence from your Lifestyle Guide from the eminent International Language Institute (IS). For many years, this international institute has specialized in teaching French to adults in small groups.
- Experience life abroad and equip yourself to live independently anywhere in France.
- 12 hours of professional French language and culture instruction each week. Instructors from the IS Aix-en-Provence language school provide small-group instruction tailored to your needs.
- Stay connected with friends, family and AHI Travel staff with a complimentary international cell phone.
- Weekly cleaning service.