This is a very old entry — images are small, formatting is off.
La Manche is a Department of France located in Normandy, at the northern end of the country, perhaps best known for being home to the preternaturally picturesque Mont Saint-Michel, accessible from the Cotentin peninsula through a natural bridge that is covered and uncovered as the tide raises and lowers. The Conseil général de La Manche is rebranding La Manche — and to a certain degree also the larger region of Normandy — as not just an Old World Charm kind of place but a forward looking destination with a new identity designed by Lyon-based Communiquez. A PDF in French with the explained system can be found here — our French readers might prefer it over my butchered interpretations.
The icon is a pretty set of undulating shapes that are well rationalized in the schematic above, linking it to water, the initials of the destination, and, less convincingly, to the shapes of the Department and a peninsula. Luckily for them, the rationalization works because as an icon it could be used as the logo for the next Sony HD television. A little too futuristic and generic. But in the larger scheme of the identity it has enough support to not be confused with something else. It could also do away with the gradients as they add absolutely nothing to the work.
The stencil approach, again, creates some very pretty forms but, again too, it seems like there is a disconnect between the execution and the thing it represents. As a design exercise it all seems very plausible but as a destination exercise I might expect to land somewhere in Tokyo, not quite La Manche.