French affairs: regional holidays in French organized and “Semesters abroad for busy adults”
“When I think of France, there are just familiar faces and beautiful people everywhere I know… no part is really foreign. It’s almost everything at home, ”says Elizabeth New Seitz in her warm Texas drawl. The French professor and entrepreneur has spent the past fourteen years teaching Americans the “passion of her life,” a small country called France.
Seitz started learning French at a young age, and fell in love with it during a semester in Aix-en-Provence (or “Aix-en-vacances” as she says the students called it). After graduating from Vanderbilt with a major in French, a chance encounter with a former teacher brought her to her “vocation” of sharing the French language and culture with the world. After obtaining a doctorate in French and a stint in American companies using French in a business context, she asked herself: “How am I going to share French, but on my own terms?” “
French affairs was born. In 2007, she launched the travel agency to provide niche vacation experiences for small groups of visitors looking to explore the best of France. Beautiful old hotels, private chateau tours, wine and Armagnac tastings, and delicious French dinners are all part of the package, with fun and unique experiences linked, like cocktails where you could learn how to tie a scarf well. French-style courtesy of representatives of Petrusse.
Its high-end regional circuits highlight specific regions of France. So you could spend 7-8 days exploring the character, food and language of Aix-en-Provence, Burgundy, Normandy or even Paris. These Cultural trips cost between $ 4,500 and $ 6,500 (double occupancy), with an average of 12 to 18 guests per trip. It also offers Culinary trips, which cost around $ 2,500 to $ 3,500 for 4 days and focus on one region’s food. The 2 weeks Linguistic and cultural immersion Program in Aix-en-Provence is what she calls a “busy adult semester abroad,” costing an average of $ 5,000, with meals, outings, and language classes included. And there are even special tours just for antique lovers! The groups are small enough to cover a lot of ground, but large enough to meet new people “all united around this love of France”, creating a “ripple community” that spreads around the world as time goes by. and as visitors make new friends along the way. of their stay.
Seitz is always adding more regions to the repertoire and says a number of loyal customers have come back time and time again, trying to make their own “Tour de France” over the years. “I loved encouraging people to discover this wonderful language, this wonderful culture, all the things we know that make France so interesting and fantastic,” she adds.
“My two objectives with French Affaires were to show France on the ground with me, or with me to help them plan their own trip… and also with the Americans in particular, to bring France to the United States to through cultural discussions, language courses and events to discover France. The latter was much larger during COVID-19, as Seitz had to postpone trips and focus on virtual events focused on language, culture and food, so as to make France accessible from a distance.
Upcoming French Business trips include a Photographic tour of southwestern France from September 30 to October 7, 2021; Autumn in the southwest of France from October 6 to October 15, 2021; and 2022 tours of Corsica, the Basque Country, the Loire Valley, Brittany and Provence. So if you’re ready to get rid of that confinement blues, sign up early, because it’s party time and, as Seitz recalls, “France is still a party”.