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2/24/16

Wanted: Paris Recommendations



I just booked an early spring trip to Paris. I'm both beyond excited and completely anxious all at once. Despite being an avid traveler back in my twenties, I haven't been on an airplane without my children...ever! My oldest is now 16.

Several months ago, I mentioned this quirky little fact about myself to a close friend who travels a lot (she works for a French luxury fashion label). Having known me since we were very young, she was shocked at my revelation and suggested that I tag along on her next trip to Paris in order to "get out of my rut". I agreed and now here we are-the plans are booked and paid for!

Even though my friend is very familiar with Paris, I'll still have a lot of time on my hands to explore the city alone. I've been to Paris once before, back in my early twenties. It was a February visit, I slept in a youth hostel, carried a large back pack and was on a shoe string budget. This time around, I'm pretty excited at the thought of going back and enjoying some of the finer things Parisian life has to offer. I'd love to get some suggestions - leave a comment or shoot me an email if there's a favorite spot or site I shouldn't miss.

In the meantime, I'm tempering my nerves by stalking the fabulous Instagram account of Carin Olsson @ParisInFourMonths -that's where I found all these stunning Parisian images! And, it really is helping!


14 comments:

  1. Where to even start!!! I am thrilled for you, Sue! I will email you some of my faves later today! xoxo

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  2. Walk the Montmartre district, visit Shakespeare and Co., the Bon Marche, and if possible go to a flea market. I personally don't care for standing in long lines for some of the more touristy things. The Eiffel Tower is much better from afar vs. unclose in my opinion. Safe travels and have fun!

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  3. One of my top spots looks like it just closed: A la Bonne Renomée in the Marais. Other favorites: Slip into the courtyard at the American Apparel at 41 rue du Temple--there's a big dance school and you can watch, Rear Window-style, ballet in one window, tango in another, tap in another....Get a drink at the café atop the Jean Nouvel-designed Institut du Monde Arabe, right on the Seine, amazing views, usually amazing exhibits, too. Not far from there, get an awesome massage at the hammam at the Grand Mosque. Last time I was there, I had to squeeze past a glass case of pastries to get to the almost hidden door off the tea room. Check for which day is for women. Not far from there are the amazing Arènes de Lutèce. Have a glass of champagne at midnight with your sunglasses on like everybody else at the hyper cool Café Marly at the Louvre; I love their duo of salmon and tuna tartares. AirBnB is nice if you want to pretend to be a local, but I really like Hotel des Grandes Ecoles, and Inès de la Fressange agrees with me. A nice restaurant, not touristy cuz it's off the beaten path: Le Square Trousseau near la Bastille. Parc Monceau is an oasis of calm, full of chic Parisians with their kids and/or dogs. There are two small, lovely museums right there: Musée Nassim de Camondo (furniture) and Musée Cernuschi (Asian art). Also the Rodin museum and the Monet museum! Too much wonderful stuff to do!!
    All that said, there is more to France than Paris. Check out Carcassonne sometime.

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  4. Hi! I love Paris! Lenny Kravitz and Vanessa Paradis used to eat at L'as du falafel (Marais area). It's delicious fast food and the price is not expensive at all. You can see their picture on the wall of the restaurant. I also love The Smiths Bakery at rue de Buci, http://www.thesmithsbakery.com/, they have delicious cakes and ice-creams and the staff was really friendly. Bon voyage!
    A reader from Barcelona, Spain,
    Marta
    A Bilingual Baby blog

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  5. Oh lucky you....so many things and places to enjoy.I AM JEALOUS! I am going got email you some of my suggestions...safe travels! Girlfriends trips are such fun:)

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  6. Anonymous2/24/2016

    Check out blog "Lattes and Lavender." Last Sept. she traveled to Paris and has a nice summary. Take a gazillion pictures! Every random building there is historic and beautiful and every dish served is decorated and scrumptious!


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  7. Rich Blumenthal2/24/2016

    If you haven't done so already I would recommend climbing the stairs of the Eiffel Tower. You get to experience it more fully than taking the elevator. Start with the lower level and if your legs are still functioning, go up to the middle level where the view is beyond magnificent. Personally I think the view from the uppermost level loses some detail and is somewhat airplane-like; and besides, it's a hard climb. Also I would recommend a trip to Versailles, where among other things, you can visit Marie Antoinette's Temple of Love, the exact spot where my daughter became engaged. Of course, the Louvre is a must-see even if you've been there before. The outdoor art galleries at Montmartre are classic Paris. Have a great trip!

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  8. Anonymous2/24/2016

    Best coffee in Paris: https://www.facebook.com/bootcafe

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  9. Hey ladybug, get in touch with Tish Jett & Vicki Archer. They are authorities. You know their blogs, of course. Sending a big hug from Houston....Marsha

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  10. So excited for you! I went to Paris on my honeymoon but have not been back since. My son is studying abroad this semester and just hopped over there this week from Berlin - and the word he used to describe it was "magical." He's so right! Every building, cafe, and bakery is a feast for the eyes. You will have so much fun!

    Sheila
    www.maisondecinq.blogspot.com

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  11. Not to be unhelpful... Is that even a word? But everything that you do in Paris is amazing and magical. Even ordering a cup of coffee or buying a loaf of bread. really. Wandering is the best, best way to see a city. That's our agenda wherever we travel... wander. Before my last trip to France I read http://sharonsantoni.com/ and followed Cat In France on IG and a couple of others like Paris In Four Months. If something caught my eye I made note of it. I was going to Normandy as well as Paris and these ladies know both places so It was a great way to get a starting point. I'm a visual person so I knew seeing something that I wanted to see would be a better guidebook for me than reading about the tourist must do's! It will be fabulous. can't wait to see what you see and do! Bon Voyage.

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  12. I went in August and did a perfume making class. I also did a French macaron baking class with a chef. Another day we took the train out to Reims and did some champagne tastings with a private guide/driver. One of the options in Paris was to do a private showing of the Louis Vuitton headquarters but we were with our kids and there was no way they would have tolerated any of that! Another friend of mine did the chocolate walking tour but we weren't able to get to that on our last trip.

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  13. I always recommend that people visit Musee Marmaton Monet. It is in the lovely upscale residential 16th Arrondisement and is a small museum devoted to the Impressionists. As you can tell from its name it has an amazing collection of Monets (given by Monet's son). Just a wonderful place and not well known, so not crowded.

    I would also spend time on Isle St. Louis (in the middle of the Seine) which gives you a very nice sense of "old Paris". And just walk up and down the streets of the 7th arrondisement (Left Bank). Some of the most gorgeous shops, art galleries, ever. And nearby is the best department store in Paris (?the world), Bon Marche. I just go to look -- beautiful displays, beautiful products, just an aesthetic experience that only the French can do.

    Have fun

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  14. Anonymous3/01/2016

    Bon Marche department store, La Talleviant for dinner, Picasso Musuem, and L'Orangerie!

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Got something to share? Would love to hear it. I read every single comment:)

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