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Challe then abandoned the salon and lived as an expatriate on the island of Sardinia, in a hippie commune. He subsequently traveled to India, Nepal and Indonesia. He uses Buddha statues for the interior design of his bar and restaurant.
Challe returned to France and was introduced to new-age music by the likes of Andreas Vollenweider and Ennio Morricone. He became involved in Parisian nightlife. He managed a series of French clubs, including Le Prive (1974), Le Centre Ville in Les Halles (1979), Les Bains-Douches (1984), El Divino in Ibiza (1992), and Buddha Bar (1996). The restaurant/club became a popular destination and led to Challe's Buddha Bar mix compilations.
Challe produces his music and others' on his Chall'o Music label. He has said, "I consider the art of DJ-ing to be the passion of [my] life. When I'm DJ-ing, I give myself to the people. When I play, I'm in the music."
- "Qui est Claude Challe? (official site: news)". Archived from the original on 2012-05-07. Retrieved 2012-05-12.
- "The Tuesday profile: Claude Challe". RFI Musique. Radio France Internationale. 3 October 2001. Archived from the original on 21 June 2011. Retrieved 21 December 2010.
- "Hippy Days". Khaleej Times. 14 February 2010. Retrieved 21 December 2010.