Schoelcher Library, Fort-de-France, Martinique

The Schoelcher Library, located in Fort-de-France in Martinique, is a public library. It is located at the corner of Liberté St. and Victor Sévère St., facing the north corner of Savane Square. Victor Schoelcher, deputy of Guadeloupe and Martinique (1848-1850) had a collection of 10,000 books and 250 musical scores but since he had no descendants, he left his collection to the General Council of Martinique under condition of create a public library. The building was built by Pierre Henri Picq. The building was built in the garden of the Tuileries in Paris and was first presented to the Parisians (1886-1887), before being dismantled and shipped by boat to Fort-de-France to be rebuilt. Unfortunately, most of the original books disappeared with a large fire in 1890. The library finally opened in 1893. The building, built on a square plan, has a large dome that illuminates the reading room. There is a mix of art nouveau, western classical and Egyptian art and some Byzantine influences. Names of great French writers decorate friezes. There is a very colorful mosaic exterior pediment.

Tips

If you visit Fort-de-France, it’s worth some time to see the library and its building.

If you are lucky, you will find exhibits on site.

Grasse, Alpes-Maritimes, France

The city of Grasse in the Alpes-Maritimes, 12 km north of Cannes, is the world’s perfume capital, it is also one of the most flowery cities of Europe.

 
We recommend:

 
The international perfume museum
This excellent museum allows you to discover 4000 years of history of the manufacture of perfume. It also proposes exhibitions, including one where you can particularly see the travel kit of Marie Antoinette.

Creating your own perfume

The Studio of Fragrances, a creative workshop of perfumes, offers courses every day. They last about two hours and are supervised by specialists speaking English, German, Italian, Japanese, Finnish, Swedish and Chinese. Fee includes a 100 ml bottle of the parfume that you created, and you can order more online.

Workshop Cooking with flowers

Chef Yves Terrillon introduces fragrances in the menu. With its range of flavors & Petals products he offers tagliatelle with foie gras with roses and violets. You can also learn to cook with flowers by following one of his classes at the Atelier cooking with flowers.

 

President Venceslau’s observation tower, President Venceslau, San Paulo, Brazil

President Venceslau’s observation tower has the Dutch style. But, in fact, it was the work of a Portuguese engineer Álvaro Coelho built in 1927 with four brick floors and wooden roof, with a structure reinforced with concrete base and the railway rails- exactly slabs beams are made of train tracks!

Coelho came to Brazil to sell land through a company he owned. Arrived at the Paulista West which was not yet President Venceslau where there were some explorers and many indians; he bought a large farm, built a luxurious site and this such observation tower from where he could see the horizon of his land and prevent the possible invasions of indians and “competitors” in the business.

For a long time, although useful in the safety of the earth, the observation tower of the highly innovative standards architecture for Brazilian structures at that time, even more for this corner of the State, served as a decoration, the site of the farm, which also became known as the Palace of Álvaro Coelho at the reception of the large dinners of high society, being visited by Brazilian politicians and even abroad, for example a Hungarian Minister visited it.

Álvaro Coelho became the first mayor, who then created the first municipality that President Venceslau had. Thus, the village grew. He sold the land and the farm was reduced. But the tower continued to attract curious eyes of residents and visitors.

Tips

The site is free and of an unrestricted access, the same for photos but as this is a hot country region, you will need solar filters, protectors against insects and water for hydration.