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Discover Barcelonnette

With its villas surrounded by beautiful gardens, Barcelonnette is reminiscent of a spa town - a summer resort which has largely retained all its buildings that were constructed between 1870 and 1930 by former migrants returning home after making their fortunes.

Designed by architects from Marseille, Grenoble and Paris, the villas style adheres to the century of eclecticism that favoured picturesque and decorative designs and facades using industrial products: artificial stone, glazed ceramics, iron, brick, etc.

Two of the villas are listed on the Inventory of Historical Monuments; Villa Costebelle (1913) and Villa Bleue (1930) which is labelled as a twentieth century heritage. Only the villa, La Sapinière (1880), is open to visitors and houses the Museum of the Valley (Musée de France) and its multidisciplinary collections of the world.

A true "open air stone museum", the Barcelonnette cemetery contains the monumental tombs of former emigrants, all in alignment, and carved from the finest marble and limestone by the tools of skilled sculptors and masons of Piedmont, from the province of Cuneo, on the opposite side of the mountain pass!


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