One of my favourite cities in the world. There’s something that’s truly magical about it, it’s building’s facades, and its world famous monuments. I do feel this sense of excitement whenever I’m lucky enough to visit. Maybe it’s because it’s my grandfather’s favourite city too, but there’s also a million other reasons…
The macaroons, the French accent (I love hearing a French person say Louis Vuitton), the architecture, amazing doors on every road, its glamorous side, a dark and edgy side, but most of all an artistic side, with pretty intimate courtyards here, there and everywhere. I just love everything about it.
Plus there’s so much history, I could get lost in its charm, and no matter how many times I visit, there’s always something that is new or changed!
Below, I’ve shared some of my favourite spots in this incredible city.
First things first, brunch, or even lunch
There are a few incredible brunch places and these are just a few of my favourites:
Hotel Grand Amour: This is my absolute favourite brunch spot, the court yard is super lovely (pictured above) and has heaters too so its warm year round. Inside the restaurant is also lovely, and I love the menu. The do a typical French brunch, including some French delicacies you wouldn’t have necessarily tried, and even a “brunch pudding,” plus, as to be expected, the coffee is a winner.
SEASON: This one has Instagram worthy all over it and the avocado on toast is yummy! Not forgetting to mention the smoothies, and the marble table upstairs in the corner is pretty fab too if you can bag it (we didn’t this time – note, it is always really busy!)
MERCI: This is another place with a cute courtyard. Why? It comes complete with a Fiat 500, a red one nonetheless, and they are one of my all time favourite cars. I particularly love how this one comes with a numberplate that spells out M E R C I. Of course, the food, coffee and juices are good too. My favourite is the Italian selection for lunch – I know it’s Paris, but I have to have my dose of Parma ham.
Au Cadet de Gascogne: I love the crepes in this place in Montmartre too – a great place to sit and watch the world go by, and that’s exactly what we did, whilst eating crêpes drizzled in Gran Marnier, yum.
Or of course, a spontaneous croissant and coffee is always a good idea too!
Les Georges: This is my all time favourite restaurant in Paris and I have some very fond memories of it as a place, and it’s just as beautiful in both the winter and the summer. It’s on the top of the Centre Pompidou so the views across the Parisian rooftops are incredible, and you can see the Eiffel Tower’s dazzling lights, on the hour, every hour.
In the winter, it’s dark earlier so you see more of the Eiffel Tower in all it’s glory, but in the summer, unless it baking, be sure to get an outside table to basque in all the Parisian summer night has to offer.
I also love the music, as a place it has a very cool vibe, and a music playlist that strongly resembles the tunes being played in Ibiza’s Cafe Mambo.
Hotel Grand Amour: As mentioned above, I’d take any excuse to go here, and that’s for dinner too!
Brasserie L’Atlas: This fits in with the traditional Cafe Paris scene, but I particularly like this one and it’s near a damn good crêperie with a moroccan vibe. Whilst, I wouldn’t make a special journey to visit here, I’d definitely stop by if you do the walk from Notre Dame / Pont Neuf along the Seine to the Eiffel Tower (mentioned a bit later on).
KONG: This has always been on my must-do list for Paris ever since seeing it in Sex and the City, and it’s a great place to go in the day or at night – the view of the roof on the Louis Vuitton HQ is amazing. Not forgetting, you’re essentially in a glass bubble on top of an old Parisian building.
It’s also the host of may PFW parties.
That all said, I put this down as an experience, it’s expensive and the food can take a while, although the lobster and the cocktails are definitely worth the wait!
Le 52, 52 Fauborg, Saint Denis: I LOVE this place, the menu is in French so be warned, but it is a local’s joint, and whilst it only has a few menu choices, they’re all perfectly formed. It is all so delicious. It was once a butcher’s and it’s been turned in to a cool restaurant (with an industrial vibe to its decor) in the now very hip area of Saint-Denis, an area I particularly love, because whilst it’s very trendy, it’s different to the rest of Paris, as it isn’t so polished but oozes character.
Here’s a list of some of my favourite places:
- Saint Chapelle (it has the most amazing stained glass windows – it gave me goosebumps)
- Notre Dame Cathedral (I really do love the architecture on this building – if you want to go in, be sure to build a fair bit of time in for the queue)
- Pont Neuf bridge to see the love locks
- Palais Garnier for more amazing architecture, ceilings and floors
- The LOUVRE
- Montmartre (and whilst you’re here it’s easy to visit the Sacre Coeur too)
- The Champs Elysees and it’s Louis Vuitton shop – it’s the largest in the world
- Ladurée on the Champs Elysee, their macaroons are a must! My absolute favourite are the morello cherry and the salted caramel ones
- The Arc de Triomphe
- The Grand Palais and Petit Palais (the door on the Petit Palais certainly has the wow factor), always check out what exhibition they have on too, for example, last year they had the Jean-Paul Gaultier exhibition and I’m glad I didn’t miss it. This winter, they had ice skating in the Grand Palais too which would also be an amazing experience.
- Avenue Montaigne – it’s my favourite shopping street, just because of its window canopies and the colour of the Dior shop, HELLO grey! This is also where I bought my new Chloé Faye handbag (which cane found on my insta: fallthreadoverheels).
- Afternoon Tea at the Westin is pretty specialA cabaret show at the Moulin Rouge or the Lido, just a tip, the Lido’s tickets are half the price, and it really is the same kind go thing (or so I’ve been told by a friend who is a local Parisian)
- Lastly, but my no means least, the Eiffel Tower. It fascinates me. Did you know it was originally red? And now it’s painted every seven years. The paint is shaded different tones the whole way up the tower to ensure it all looks one colour regardless of which way the light hits it, very clever.
A general wander around is always great in Pareeee. One of my favourite walks takes you from MERCI, along another of my favourite shopping streets in Paris: Rue Vielle du Temple, complete with a Sandro, Zadig and Voltaire, and Manoush to name a few of the boutiques that I just love to window shop in. From there, you can visit Pont Neuf, Notre Dame, and then walk along the Seine, stopping in many cafes, either for a glass of wine, or a Vin Chaud (mulled wine) depending on the time of year, ending up at the Eiffel Tower: I love seeing this both in the day and at night, every time I visit.
If you do stop to have brunch at hotel grand Amour then it’s also an easy walk up to Montmartre from here and I’d definitely recommend that too.
Of course, if you’re visiting in the Summer, you also have to have some down time in the parks…
Back soon, Lucy xx