Wednesday, June 04, 2014

We have a place to live!

Amidst heaps of stress and uncertainty, we received good news: we have a place to live in France!

Eric found an apartment in old Nice when he was visiting in early March (thanks to a fluke $300 plane ticket). We put an offer on it, but until a few weeks ago we didn't know if the second owner was going to sign the purchase agreement. But it's official now! We're finalizing details regarding the mortgage and closing date.

Things we like about the apartment:
  • High ceilings (12-14 feet?)
  • Kitchen/dining/living room are all open to each other
  • Kitchen is small--no big surprise--but nicely done
  • Great location on a pedestrian street in old Nice. 
  • No nightclubs or restaurants nearby = no evening/night noise
  • 3 minute walk to the ocean and, of course, in the middle of everything else :)
  • 2nd to top floor, so the apartment does get some sun and adequate light. If you're on the bottom floors on a narrow street, your apartment will be quite dark
  • Could use a total repainting and, over the year that we're in France, new flooring in some of the rooms. Also the bathroom is functional but blah...perhaps we'll change that?
  • Great location & size for a vacation rental when we come back home

It was renovated about 5-6 years ago. These pictures were taken right after the work was done.

kitchen & dining room, with view of living room
living room
living & dining room
bedroom #1 with shower and sink
bedroom #2

It's on the 4th floor (which is called the 3rd floor in France) on a narrow pedestrian street. Although it's listed at 700 sq ft (65 sq m) and 2 bedrooms, there is an additional 3rd bedroom and storage area in the attic. Because the ceilings are less than 5 feet tall, the attic isn't officially counted. It's the light gray area on the floor plan.

The apartment will need some cosmetic looked like this when Eric visited it:


You can look out our bedroom window, across the staircase, and into the other bedroom window.

Stairs going up to the attic...more like a ladder really:

See the original beamed ceilings and the exposed rock wall?

Zari, Dio, and Inga will all sleep up here. Ivy will be in bedroom #2 unless we have guests. Then she will come in our bedroom.

View from the apartment. Notice the clotheslines outside the window? I will be using those every day!

Our neighborhood has lots of art galleries. There's a butcher & grocery store right out our front door.


  1. What an amazing adventure! Can't wait to see the pics after you get it "fixed up" :)

  2. it looks amazing! i love your street! will you be going soon? this is totally random since we don't know each other in real life, but my husband is doing a professor swap to alicante, spain this spring, and me and our 3 kids are of course going too. if you ever want to do a mini house swap next spring to spain, let me know! :)

    1. Ooh, that sounds fun! Now I need to look up where Alicante is :)

  3. So fun! I think it's lovely.

  4. Ah! Wonderful, and a rental eventually :-). I will need a place in Nov 2015 for a week. Will be in touch then!

  5. It looks absolutely lovely and I'm incredibly jealous of your fantastic adventure. Please post lots of pictures. I've always wanted to go to France so I'll be living vicariously through you and the family :)

  6. An apartment in old Nice!! Ehhh c'est la belle vie ca!! Always dreamed of living in Nice or Aix or Marseilles (grew up in Quebec, with a beloved elementary school teacher and friend of the family from France). Enjoy!! How long are you there for?

  7. Congratulations on securing housing. I know it was a worry for you and now to have that worry set aside and in such a fabulous solution as this great apartment !~! Wonderful for the whole family.

  8. Glad the search is over. Your new place looks absolutely wonderful. The bedroom looks like it came fresh out of a bed and breakfast inn in an old movie. Hahaha! I just really love its vintage look. The neighborhood looks so lively as well. I'm sure you're going to have lots of fun there. All the best! :)

    Benny Daniel @ Finlay Brewer Limited


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