An exert from the Wall Street Journal describes the village in all of it's detail:
A town that hosts the start of the Tour de France awakens in the morning to find a newly-erected village in its center. The Village, as it's called, is a portable enclosure, set off by chain-link panels and often as big as a square city block, that's reserved for VIPs, race officials, media and racers. Gendarmes and security guards zealously guard its entrance, refusing anyone without a special ID badge or who is not dressed in full spandex team kit and pedaling a multi-thousand-dollar bicycle with a number-plate attached.
Once inside, one can partake of free coffee, smoothies, wine, fruit both fresh and grilled, breads, pastries, croissants, gummy fruits, any number of the day's newspapers and even a haircut. (Anyone working the Tour for its full length, whether rider or media, can start to appear a bit unkempt after three weeks.) The village opens about two hours before the start. Companies associated with the Tour set up booths with seats and tables, umbrellas, showcases for their products and giveaways that range from keychains to inexpensive caps to snacks and water — all to entice visitors who, presumably, will learn about and grow loyal to the brand.
Bands play, an emcee barks out a preview of the day, and entertainers circulate. In one corner of the village, a magician does card tricks for a bank; in another, two women on five-foot stilts, dressed all in green with costume vegetables springing from their heads, perform a dance. Minutes after the start of the race, workers begin dismantling the Village, stowing everything in tractor trailers for transport to the next town.
It's not just the advertising companies that are here to do business either - many of the rider transfers that transpire later in the year are a direct result of negotiations during the race, indeed Director Sportifs will start tapping up riders and agents during the Tour and sometimes by the race end the deal is already done though of course it's kept quiet until the back end of the season as to not upset other riders and management on the team. Sometimes during the Tour coverage on TV you can spot riders chatting 'informally' to opposing team directors and though it might look innocent enough there is often an ulterior motive.
It's clear that if we look beneath the surface of the worlds biggest bike race, there is much more going on than just a jaunt around France on two wheels.