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Experience The Ultimate in Millennium Tours
City Moves Houston’s Y2K Magazine, Premiere Issue

Introducing the ultimate cultural experience. All this talk about moving event the Millennium can be overwhelming. If you follow along with me, I am sure that I can take you spinning back in time. This is one trip that you will delight in extraordinaire!

Meeting Gregory Lee Patrick, the founder and owner of Tours of Enchantment was truly an incredible experience, for I must say, he “enchanted” me. Listening, as the excitement articulated in his voice, he went into detail about an unimaginable, almost “Twilight Zone” like vacation. Patrick stated, “I spent the last eight months arranging a spectacular week in France, encompassing a rich mixture of the finest French cuisine, the greatest wines, fashion, and adventure. Art, history, entertainment, and fabulous guests are as much a part of this experience as the renowned service that only Tours of Enchantment can provide. It is my privilege to offer The Renoir Experience to seven very fortunate couples who will, indeed agree that this adventure will give new meaning to the cliché….only once in a lifetime.”

To ensure that everything goes as smoothly as Tours of Enchantments is accustomed, Gregory Lee Patrick, will be in Paris prior to arrival. He will personally be behind the scenes to direct your daily itinerary. His assistant, Jean-Pierre, will provide guidance and interpretation throughout the week.

Honorary hosts, Paul and Marie-Paule Renoir, are down to earth and gracious people. Establishing a life long friendship is very easy. Their assistant, Nathalie Sophie Farinola, will be in charge of the Renoir Archives displayed at each chateau. What has inspired Patrick to pull together such a perfect, extravagant journey? He answers, “I am extremely fortunate to have spent many hours with Renoir’s grandson on both continents. Getting to know Paul Renoir has inspired me to create The Renoir Experience”

Before the trip begins, you will receive the best possible service. A Pre-Departure Concierge will be provided as needed.

An exceptional service will begin ten days prior to departure; a concierge will be assigned to each couple. This personal concierge will handle every aspect of those pre-departure errands. There’s no need to worry about loose ends or last minute necessities the personalized concierge will handle everything. If needed, a professional packer is sent to your home. Just sit back and relax as you anxiously await the departure to France.

This once in a lifetime experience includes only the finest of transportation. Upon the departure and return, a stretch limousine complete with police motorcade escort, will transfer in between your home and Intercontinental Airport. The flight is non-stop between Houston and Paris on Air France’s new alternative to first class, l’Espace 127.

When in France, you will be transported in a deluxe, custom motorcoach with your personal butler on board to serve cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. For some transfers, helicopters will take you efficiently from one location to the next. The views are breathtaking. Appreciate the flexibility to set down at your discretion. Additionally, enroute form a chateau in the Loire Valley to Paris. Dine in the first class dining car aboard the Train de Grande Vitesse ­ the fastest rail in the world.

Reside in one of two privately - owned, superbly decorated and modernized chateaux in the Loire Valley ­ Chateau des Briottieres and Chateau de la Verrerie. These magnificent estates will afford the privacy and serenity that only the Loire Valley offers.

Chateau des Briottieres has been in the same family for six generations. More recently it was selected the film site for the popular movie “Impromptu” starring Emm Thompson, Hugh Grant, and Bernadet Peters.

Charles Spencer, brother of Princess Di, featured Chateau de la Verrerie as the first home in the series of “The Twelve Great Houses of the World,” aired internationally on Super NBC.

La cuisine is definitely to please even the most discerning palates. French nouvelle cuisine will be served throughout the week, prepared by one of Europe’s premiere chefs and one of America’s top 10. In addition, you will have the opportunity to observe or assist these two phenomenal chefs ­ not that they’ll need help! Have three assistants complimented by four captains and a sommelier at your beck and call.

Include yourself in a wine tasting experience conducted by a top Parisian sommelier. Sit in on two informative wine tastings which will encompass the absolute finest wines, ports, cognacs, brandies, and armagnacs providing daily selections for dinner including, Chateau Petrus, Chateau Lafite Rothschild, Chateau Margaux, Chateau Haut-Brion. Indeed, by week’s end, you will have savored many of the finest French wines in existence!

Involve yourself in a unique conversation during a dining experience with interesting dinner guests one would rarely meet during a lifetime. For example, Inspector Clement, Chief Inspector of Forgeries will recount stories of famous international forgeries, which have come across his desk.

Guests to follow up are: Jean Fabris who is the Founder and President of the Maurice Utrillo Association as well as the heir to the Suzanne Valadon estate. Suzanne Valadon was Maurice Ultrillo’s mother and the model for Pierre-Auguste Renoir and other impressionist legends. Jean Fabris will relate his firsthand knowledge of their life and times.

Additional dinner guest are fascinating people such as the Princess of France, Prince Philippe Maurice de Broglie and Prince Louis Albert de Broglie, as well as the would be King of Ireland, Lord Inchiquin and his beautiful wife, Lady Helen.

Haute Couture endure dazzling performance with Louis Feraud during your very own private fashion show in his beautifully appointed Elysee Salon, on 88 Rue du Faubourg St. Honore. Five top Parisian models will astound you displaying the bold, expressive vogue of Feraud as you enjoy fine French champagne and delectable canapés. In addition to the eight ensembles, Feraud’s latest designs for the gentlemen are not to be left out.

No visit to Paris is complete without a shopping spree. Expect a fashion consultant for each couple to escort you down the Rue du Faubourg St. Honore and the Avenue Montaigne.      

As this fantasy trip continues along, awaken one morning to a wondrous site; five colorful hot air balloons inflating on the lawn of your chateau as you prepare to float over the Loire Valley. There is nothing like the quiet serenity of soaring over the French countryside, while sipping champagne and taking in the scenery.

When lunchtime arrives, relish a delectable lunch in the refined atmosphere of one of the Royal London Yacht Club’s most treasured jewels of the Seine- the Don Juan. Aboard this 100-foot yacht, you will be able to appreciate the panoramic architecture of Paris along the right and left banks, cruising at the pace of a fast walk.

Take pleasure from the neighborly hospitality as four luxurious helicopters will depart from your chateau to spend the afternoon descending upon chateau after chateau throughout the Loire Valley. You will enjoy a four-course lunch, with each course presented on the lawn of a privately owned chateau. In exchange for each chateau owner’s gracious hospitality, you will have the opportunity to bestow upon them, a distinctive Texas styled gift ­ perhaps your favorite “Taste of Texas.”

Bored with the Twentieth Century? Step into the Eighteen Century as you are adorned with a custom designed and fitted costume reminiscent of the period (1765) complete with powdered faces, elaborate wigs, fans, and beauty marks. A custom fit costume for this exclusive event will be tailored in Houston and provided to dress for the occasion. Your personal make-up artist will create “the look” benefiting your title and nobility. You’ll learn the not so subtle language of the Seventeenth Century. Use of fans to communicate your desires. Each couple will have a personal servant at their disposal for the evening.

Period horse-drawn carriages will carry you back in time to Chateau de Brissac; home of the Duke and Duchess of Brissac, where you will be formally announced at the court of King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. Enjoy the company of many remarkable guests and celebrities. Awaiting you is a captive atmosphere of music, dancing, flirting, and feasting. The feast that King Louis XVI has commanded will go down in history as the most decadent ever! Indeed, this fantastical evening is so decadent it requires 87 staff to make it possible.

Have you ever dreamed or fantasized about being a titled noble? An incentive is to be given to participants of the Eighteenth Century ball. The one guest that exemplifies the full essence of his character throughout the evening, will receive an official title of nobility. When receiving the lordship of a manor, you will inherit the status that this form of tenure implies and become the successor in title to a line of men and women, many of whom have had a pronounced influence on history. Feel the astonishment as you are the first person on the planet to accompany the grandson of Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Paul Renoir, in the recreation of “Le dejeuner des Canotiers,” his grandfather’s most famous painting. The scene will be recreated on the terrace of a La Maison Fournaise where Pierre-Auguste Renoir painted it in 1881!

As Paul directs, two photographers will capture every detail, including the reconstructed sailboat belonging to Gustave Caillebotte, who is depicted in the original painting reconstruction of his boat which was completed May 1,1996, and this was one of its first commissions.

Afterwards, a selected shot will be transposed onto a 2’x 3’ artists’ canvas. An expert impressionist, using the master’s brushstrokes and color palette, will the paint the scene with your likeness of the character. This magnificent framed oil painting, with the Renoir signature cachet; which was inherited by his grandson, will be personally delivered to your home approximately four weeks later.         

As the evening rolls on, you shall embark on a journey through the casinos and cabarets of Paris in your Nineteenth Century costumes.

Entertainment is everlasting on this enchanting tour. One evening a harpist will delight you, as sweet, angelic music dances off her fingertips. Luxuriate in an opera bouffe during dinner, with a scene after every course on another delightful night.   

Experience a favorite French pastime of “people watching” during high tea at the Hotel Ritz and the Plaza Athenee ­ two of Paris’ finest hotels.

The curator of the Musee d’Orsay and the Musee de l’Orangerie close off the impressionist sections of the museum especially for you, so Paul Renoir can give a personal narration of his grandfather’s artwork.

From there an escort takes you to a bank vault in Paris, home to original painting created by Pierre-Auguste Renoir and other renowned impressionists.

Tours of Enchantment has commissioned one of Houston’s finest videographers to accompany you throughout the entire week and capture every exciting moment. Within four weeks of your return, you will receive a 40 to 60 minute edited video with special effects delivered to your home. These professionally produced videos will be keepsakes that your family will treasure for generations.

Wouldn’t it be nice not to have to interrupt your experience to capture the moment on film? A commissioned photographer will take care of the photos, making every shot natural, leaving unnecessary worries behind…. Upon your return, a memory album of photographs will be delivered to your home.

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