Balbec is Cabourg

Map showing Paris to Cabourg; click the + to zoom in.

Balbec is the fictional name of Cabourg, a town near the sea in the Basse-Normandie region of France. Proust spent the summers of 1907 and 1914 in the Grand Hôtel at Cabourg. Random walk site.
Gare de Dives-Cabourg, Dives-sur-Mer. From Gregory Deryckère 

Train station in Balbec-Plage (right);

Proust in Cabourg (photos and audio); 

The Grand Hotel still looks like a great place for les vacances  (below)

Getting ready for Balbec

Full text of Place-Names: the Place (at the end of Swann's Way)
Place-names on the way to Bal­bec-Plage (326).

[p303] Gare Saint-Lazare : Important Parisian railway station

 ..."certain skies painted with an almost Parisian modernity by ..."Andrea Mantegna (1431-1506) and Paolo Veronese (1528–88): 

(above)  Marie de Rabutin-Chantal, marquise de Sévigné (1626-96)  [p305]; one of her many letters (right)
[p308] "... not the enraptured traveller Ruskin speaks of..."
John Ruskin (1819–1900) was an English art critic and social thinker, also remembered as a poet and artist. His essays on art and architecture were extremely influential in the Victorian and Edwardian eras. He was also a great traveller and travel writer; see this Times article.
[p309] Chardin or Whistler 
[p310] Marcus Atilius Regulus: Roman general and consul; not sure what text his mother is quoting. 
[p311] Villa Montretout
[p314] Mme de Simiane: "Mme de Sévigné corresponded with her daughter for nearly thirty years. A clandestine edition, containing twenty-eight letters or portions of letters, was published in 1725, followed by two others the next year. Pauline de Simiane, Mme de Sévigné's granddaughter, decided to officially publish her grandmother's correspondence." (wiki)
[p322] Trocadéro museum, changed from Proust's time, now contains the Musée national des Monuments Français, which is where M. saw the casts of the statues of the church.
[p324] Quimperlé ; Pont-Aven


Pages for March 2011

3/3: Cruel memories (278). Gilberte’s strange laugh, evoked in a dream (281; cf. 217). Fewer visits to Mme Swann (283). Exchange of tender letters, progress of indifference (286). 

3/10: Exchange of tender letters and progress of indifference (286). Approach of spring: Mme Swann’s ermine and the guilder-roses in her drawing-room; nostalgia for Combray (288). Odette and the “Down-and-outs Club” (290). An intermediate social class (295).

3/17:  NEW BOOK! Part 2 PLACE-NAMES:  THE PLACE (searchable text online)
Departure for Balbec (299). Subjectiveness of love (300). Contradictory effects of habit (301). Railway stations (303). Françoise’s simple and infallible taste (309).  Alcoholic euphoria (312). Mme de Sévigné and Dostoyevski (315). Sunrise from the train (316); the milk-girl (317). Balbec church (322). “The tyranny of the Particular” (324).

3/24: Place-names on the way to Bal­bec-Plage (326). Arrival at Balbec-Plage (327). The manager of the Grand Hotel (327, 332). My room at the top of the hotel (333; cf. I 8). Attention and habit (333, 339). My grandmother’s kindness (334).