Keep in mind, this was my second trip to Paris. I'd already seen (albeit years ago) the Louvre, the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Musee d'Orsay, the Pompidou, the Arc de Triomphe, Versailles, climbed the Eiffel tower and took a boat ride on the Seine. So I was looking forward to seeing some new things...
What we saw:
Luxembourg Gardens: Our hotel was in walking distance of this beautiful park. Unfortunately, the weather did not cooperate and it started to rain before I could see all of it, but we did enjoy about 45 minutes of this breathtaking destination.
Foundation Louis Vuitton: I knew next to nothing about this amazing museum. Having already been, my friend thought I would love it-and she was right! In a nutshell, Frank Gehry was hired by Bernard Arnault "to create an extraordinary space for art and culture" The architecture alone blew me away!
Marmottan Monet Museum: This museum was recommended by many. I really enjoyed this museum. The space was an old mansion in a beautiful residential neighborhood in Paris. Not too big or overwhelming, if you love the Impressionists you will love the Marmottan.
St. Sulpice: Directly across from our Hotel (more on that here) the breathtaking fountain and monumental cathedral (one of the largest in all of Paris) were a daily site for us. So beautiful!
Where we ate:
This is where traveling with someone that knows the city really came in helpful.
Pizza Chic: 13 Rue de Mézières, 75006 Paris, France
Really fresh pizza with a French twist-great neighborhood for people watching and shopping too!
Ralph's: 173 Boulevard Saint-Germain, 75006 Paris, France Another great location, the atmosphere, although very American, was very beautiful. Also recommend for the people watching, and the fried green olives!
Le Crepe Rit Du Clown: 6 Rue des Canettes, 75006 Paris, France Truthfully, I could've eaten crepes every day (and chocolate croissants too!) I recommend going for the crepe complete (eggs, ham, cheese and salad in a buckwheat crepe) along with a traditional small bowl of cider, followed by a dessert crepe of brown sugar and butter-YUM!
Hotel Costes: 239-241 Rue Saint Honoré, 75001 Paris, France A super chic destination for the "Fashion Week" crowd, great cocktails, fun people watching and yummy desserts!
Semilla: 54 Rue de Seine, 75006 Paris, France This was my favorite restaurant. Each and every dish we ordered at this low key but elegant restaurant was superb! Small and casual but extra delicious, my favorite type of place. Also, extra points for the open kitchen - which is even better than people watching...sometimes.
Ze Kitchen Gallerie: 4 Rue des Grands Augustins, 75006 Paris, France A French restaurant with Asian influences. We did the tasting menu, which was amazing...until the "sweet breads" came out. I'm not that adventurous...
We also dined at local cafes and grabbed croissants at local bakeries. Needless to say not a bad meal was eaten the whole trip!
Where we shopped:
A French clothing label and chain store, sort of like if Ann Taylor had a chicer Parisian cousin. I couldn't get enough of these shops. Great for not so basic, basics and for looking like a true Parisian.
Astier de Villate:
A favorite of mine. Even though you can buy this beautiful white pottery in the States (at Bergdorf's and John Derrian) there's something to be said about seeing it all together in the shop in Paris.
Le Bon Marche: 24 Rue de Sèvres, 75007 Paris, France It's like a museum of commerce:) Beautiful building, beautiful fashion, beautiful people, beautiful service...
Hartford: 23 Rue des Canettes You can find this brand in the states, but in France there's a whole store devoted to this chic Parisian meets California preppy French clothing line.
My Blend Spa by Clarins: 37 Avenue Hoche, 75008 Paris, France Recommended by my friend's Parisian co workers, I indulged in a facial while in Paris. It was relaxing and decadent and my skin's never been so well hydrated. On the technician's advice I purchased Clarin's Double Serum Concentrate and use it every day. The lovely smell momentarily transports me back to Paris - an amazing reminder of a great time!
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