Bonnieux in Provence
I have been familiar with this part of France for a long time. My sabbatical year 1981/82 was spent in the village of Lambesc, 40 km north of Aix en Provence. I fell in love with the area, always venturing north, to the vast plateau of the Luberon.
In 2007 I have purchased my home in the village of Bonnieux. Like most of homes in the area, mine had layers of history. The early inhabitants lived in troglodyte caves dug out in the limestone rocks. Later periods saw Romans with their skills of stone construction adding walls and arches. In the middle ages the towns grew and protected themselves with walls and entry gates.
My house has witnessed all these changes. The walls are very thick, window openings are small and heavy beams support the floors.
The last owner of my house was Julien Levy, a famous New York art dealer, who came to live in Bonnieux in the 1950's and taught at the American Art School in Lacoste. The house required some updating but I wanted to respect it's simple charm and provencal character.
My life in Bonnieux
Bonnieux is a village of approximately 1600 inhabitants, situated in the Luberon, Vaucluse, located north of the city of Marseille and 40km from Avignon.
It is a ancient hilltop village which dominates the valley. It spreads out from the hill in a cascade of medieval houses, unified by their pale grey stone structures and faded red tile roofs.
Historically Bonnieux was a wealthy town. Between the 15th and 18th century, it was part of the Comtat Venaissin, belonging to the Popes. Many wealhy homes attest to this period of the town's importance.
The view from the top of the village is stunning. One can see distant villages of Lacoste, Rousillion, Gordes. The vast fertile plain planted with neat rows of vineyards, cherries orchards and lavender. Wild flowers grow by the roadsides, ever-changing with seasons. This is truly the land of wine and honey. I have chosen this place of beauty as my home.