Paris When It Sizzles
So if you’ve been following me on Instagram you may have noticed I wasn’t in my usual location last week. I had a marvellous time swanning around, and living my dream in Paris if only for a week. I didn’t go as a tourist, but went to take a dance and theatre course. But I did have a day to power-walk around the streets of the Marais, and a few other old Paris fave’s so I thought I’d put together a little guide.
The city was beautifully warm and sunny when I was there, and I sat out at an Open Air Cinema on my last night with new friends, drinking wine and eating cheese and baguette and for a few hours really felt like my life is at a turning point. (but more on that later!) Paris is such an inspiring place to spend time in, and I wanted to share with you a few of my all time favourite’s.
Merci – Boulevard Beaumarchais
Now this is a bit of an instagram favourite, and it did not disappoint. This shop/cafe/restaurant is one of the best concept stores I came across (and Paris has a few!) With beautiful fashion pieces, kitchen-wares, jewellery and even an Aesop counter there is something for everyone. It also cater’s for everyone’s budget with bracelets starting from 3 Euro’s, to several hundred for designer clothes. I picked up a few gifts for people back home in their stationary section including a beautifully designed box of matches, some medallion bracelets, and spotty masking tape!
The cafe, and restaurant’s are exquisite, as you would expect from a store with such a great eye for design. It was pretty beautiful sitting down for a coffee on an old leather armchair, surrounded by old books.
My favourite thing about this place, is that all the profits are donated to charity! So guilt free shopping, and eating in abundance! (Plus the vintage Fiat 500 is pretty cute too!)
Also check out:
So We Are, 41 Rue de Charrone, for fashion and gifts.
And Claire Naa 9 rue Saint-Sulpice another excellent Parisian concept store focusing on jewellery, and has everything from cute origami cat necklaces, to slogan leather pouches.
Musee De L’Orangerie
Paris is pretty much known as the art capital of Europe, and rightly so. The Louvre, Musee D’Orsay, Musee Rodin, and others are all some of the best art galleries in the world in my opinion. But nothing compare’s to the lesser known Musee De L’Orangerie. Situated in the Jardin De Tullieries, just on the other side of the river from Musse D’Orsay, this place was built especially to house Monet’s famous Water-lillie’s paintings. You walk in to a circular room, and are overwhelmed by the size and beauty of these masterpieces. You are surrounded by them, and it gives me a real sense of perspective on the world. How lucky, whatever way you look, you can see some of the most beautiful things ever created.
It isn’t just the waterlillies. Downstairs there are changing exhibitions, and permanent pieces from Picasso, Matisse and many other famous French painters.
This place is more than worth a visit, as it’s normally pretty quiet as well (unlike the Louvre where you can queue for 3 hours to catch a glimpse of the frame the Mona Lisa sits in!)
Also check out:
Musee Rodin – This gallery is exclusively Rodin sculptures, as the name might suggest. Rodin is one of the world’s greatest sculptors in my opinion, as he has a rare ability to capture the human body as if it is in motion. It’s also worth going for the incredible garden! Walking around a beautiful Parisian garden, stumbling on some of the greatest sculpture’s ever created…not a bad way to spend an afternoon!
This lovely little Pizza joint just down the road from Merci does excellent pizza for affordable prices! Eating in Paris, particularly sitting out on Cafe terraces, can get expensive, so I was pleased to see prices under 20 Euro’s as it’s right in the heart of quite a trendy area. The decor also has that cool, modern-antique (what?!?) vibe going on – if you have any idea what I mean by that!
So what if it costs 7 Euro’s for a cake look how pretty they are! There are several branches in Paris, but the little one in the Latin Quarter has a beautiful tea room which is normally less over-crowded than the Champs-Elysses. Perfect for sipping tea, and scoffing patisserie.
Pretty Much Anywhere
Unless you are proper foodie then feel free to dispute me, but my favourite thing about eating out in Paris isn’t the food. The act of sitting out on a terrace overlooking the Seine with views of Notre Dame or the Eiffel Tower…I would eat anything put in front of me! (Particularly if it’s cheese and wine!)
Have you been to Paris before? What are your favourite things to do?