Covid-19 may have put a pause on adventures to faraway places, but it certainly hasn’t put you lovely lot off planning your destination celebration! In fact, our destination searches are up a whopping +400% on last year! So if you’re one of the couples seeking a dreamy, exclusive wedding venue in France, then fall in love with Le Grand Banc.
Wedding Planner Josh Tully is here to tell us all about his latest find…
After hanging up from my first phone call with Cosmo Fry, the owner of a private hamlet in the heart of Luberon, Provence, I just knew that this was a venue I needed to be involved in.
Due to Covid and all the complications that come with it, I had to sit tight until the first window of opportunity came up whereby I could visit the venue for myself. Leading up to the trip I had immersed myself in all I could find online and the excitement grew. Reading articles on Vogue, Harpers Bazaar and Style Me Pretty, seeing names of guests such as Princess Margaret, John Malkovich, Jasper Conran, Alexa Chung and so many more being dropped in left right and centre – it was the beginnings of a dream come true.
I drove for six hours from Cognac in the height of the summer, and I meandered through Provencal villages in complete awe of the landscape surrounding my tiny Fiat 500 and me. The roads got smaller and steeper, and before I knew it, I had arrived at the very discreet entrance to the hamlet, which can’t be seen from the road – I just couldn’t wait to see what this place had to offer.
I was greeted with chilled rosé and a charcuterie platter in one of two dining rooms – this was the one with the walls adorned with Andy Warhol works. I sat for 20 minutes trying to just breathe and holding myself back from the want to run around and see everything as quickly as possible.
Luckily, I didn’t have to wait very long at all before I was taken on the tour by the very lovely property guardians, who guided me through the winding streets, visiting the individual stone houses that make up the village. Genuinely, I couldn’t stop taking pictures and around every corner I was using the words, ‘Wow, I love it. Hang on, I just need to take a picture!’. What’s particularly special is that each room is so unique, but there is feel of history and style everywhere you look – it reminded me of a Tom Ford directed movie with effortless style and exquisite detail with an edge.
JT Style Tip: The colours are muted and the stone walls create the perfect back drop. I imagine wild florals, all wispy and seasonal alongside textured candleholders and vases, ceramics and vintage glass. I intend to keep it simple but beautiful, after all, the venue alone really offers style in abundance.
After exploring the houses, I was sold. But next up, I was taken through the main house and out towards the outdoor pool. I walked through a lavender lined path and just stood there for a minute taking in what I was looking at – the view, I have no words. I had seen a picture, but in person, it’s really breathtaking. I couldn’t quite believe how far I could see and how the landscaped just seemed to go on forever. The stone statues casually dotted around the pool, the sunken sofa area which doubles up as an outdoor bar, the perfectly trimmed tree line to ensure the view is completely undisturbed and then on top of all of this the silence – I really felt as though I was stood at the highest point of the region.
After the tour, I decided to cool off in the pool and sat with another glass of perfectly cool rosé (I mean, it’s Provence, so it would be rude not too). My brain was brimming with ideas and I couldn’t stop thinking of how I would use the space – every area is perfect. The one thing that I could picture was the whole hamlet full of friends and family in the build up to the wedding, with everyone running through the streets going from house to house looking for a comb, or the flower girl.
I sat with my friend that evening, taking in every second of the incredible sunset and said, ‘I really hope I can work with this venue, I can’t wait to share it with the world’. Well, here I am two months on talking about launching it as a wedding venue where my company offers the planning solution!
The plan is simple – tell the story and create some truly magical moments at what is a truly special place. I stayed for just 24 hours and left feeling as though I had been there for weeks – it truly felt like a home away from home. During lockdown, I decided Josh Tully Management would focus on partnering with unique venues in unique locations. So, here we are, introducing the exquisite Le Grand Banc.
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