Promenade Pereire – A Happy Place
The Promenade Pereire, this long park full of kids, flowers and fun, has always been a place of happiness to me. Back when I was a nanny for a family who lived near Porte Maillot, I used to bring the little boy I cared for here to play. It was built in 1989, so it’s a rather recent park, and is perfectly nestled in a highly residential area of the 17th arrondissement. The after school hour is the most delightful, with kids squealing and running around, nannies pulling out an array of cookies and snacks, strollers parked in the shade…
But as kid-friendly as it it, it also has a romantic aura to it, with the arbors full of lush blooming roses in the Spring and Summer. Teenagers sit in groups on the grass and discuss school gossip, talk about boys or review homework. Once the kids have abandoned the park to head home, there is plenty of space for lovers and romantics to head out for a stroll at dusk.
And this stretches all the way from avenue des Ternes to Place du Marechal Juin (Place Pereire as we all refer to it as). So you get a lot of lushness in the middle of some busy streets. You can almost forget that you are in a big city in this charming spot of Paris. The Pereire brothers, after whom this park is named, as well as the boulevard on which it sits, were bankers in the 19th century who played an important role in the development of the railroad. And this park follows the line of a section of “La Petite Ceinture” which was a railroad that circled Paris before the giant “Périferique” highway was built.
The park also hosts now a sculpture in homage of the Charlie Hebdo victims of January 2015. It is strange to see children running around and laughing among these bloody pencils. But I guess that even with a note of seriousness to to it, this park remains a happy place.