Sunday, December 16, 2012

Where to Travel: La Droguerie Vitroly @ Montpellier, France


This international post is provided by my dear friend, Ann-Sofie Perier,
who currently lives in Paris and is originally from Montpellier, France.



The Location: Montpellier, France

The Vibes: Ali Baba’s cave

When-to-Go: Open from 10a.m. to 7p.m. every day; closed on Sunday and Monday

The $ Factor: $ to $$

The 4-1-1:
If you’re nice and smiling, the owner André may invite you for a coffee in the café next to the boutique

She'll
 Be Back…: "Every time I want to find an original gift, or to refill my tea collection"


Montpellier is the most vibrant and youngest city of southern France. Not only is it sunny and cute, but people are amazingly surprising, with their accent and their typical Mediterranean kindness.

La Droguerie Vitroly, one of the oldest shops in the city, stands in the city center, on one of the most charming squares of Montpellier, the Place Castellane.

When you arrive on the square, the store stands out immediately, thanks to the multitude of objects in the window and in front of the door, and for its wooden facade, typical of the twenties, when the shop is closed (pictured to the right). This store is so unusual that it is sometimes the background of film sets! Indeed, it’s full of charm and reminiscent of ancient times…




Monsieur Estoul started to run La Droguerie in 1920, as a place where vineyard owners came to buy copper sulphate, women lipsticks and bigoudis [hair curlers].

In France, a “droguerie” is a store where you can buy all sorts of everyday things, and it is in this spirit that the shop has grown, and has been recognized over the years by the Montpellier inhabitants. The drugstore was the place where everything could be found.

André Vitroly, the current owner of the shop, is the 3rd Vitroly to manage this magical place. He obviously went on with the tradition of “you-can-find-anything-here,” but expanded to offer elaborate gifts. Thus, for more than 20 years, La Droguerie has helped its customers to discover new objects, whether boat collections, fine teas or fragrances.

The interior of the shop reveals fabulous products - “Made in France” branded - like Mariage Frères teas or Esteban’s home fragrances.

This place is a diverse and charming universe, with its old wooden floor and all the atypical and offset objects. In addition to the beautiful products offered, André and Danièle will surely make you want to come back!

Make sure you don’t miss La Droguerie when you travel to southern France!

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**Photos provided by Ann-Sofie

3 comments:

  1. As there are so many more places with history or info that could be addressed and were not, we were disappointed. A walking tour is on foot because of all the things you pass and can learn - not just 5 places int eh French Quarter are interesting. Travel

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  2. Warner, thanks for your comment. As with all posts on this blog, the purpose of the post was/is to highlight one specific place in a specific area, not multiple places. That's to be able to give as much information as possible about that one specific place. Of course, there are exceptions to the rule, but that's pretty much the rule. I agree that there are tons of places to visit, and as the travel section and this blog grow and more content is added, hopefully there will be enough material so that eventually, you have enough options to make your own personalized walking tour. But again, I appreciate the feedback very much. Hope that helps...

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