In my hometown in New England, we always had an event in mid-December called the « Christmas Stroll ». It was a a time for the residents and those of neighboring towns to come and enjoy together the Christmas ambiance that was always so well exemplified in the decorations. The town (a village really) had a tiny little central « place » that housed the tall Christmas tree and the crèche de noël, and all the black and white façades of the boutiques on Main Street were spruced up with fir greens and red bows with pretty little white lights to accentuate the falling snowflakes that always arrived just in time. The shops opened late for the Christmas stroll and served or sold their best and most festive holiday wares. It was a place to run into your old school teacher, or meet up with past classmates, see old high school pals or towns people that you know and recognize for years.
While that may never happen to me ever in Paris, I did get to experience a different, perhaps more glamorous type of Christmas stroll and although there was no small town charm or reminiscing, there was plenty of holiday cheer and happiness shared between me and a darling friend who was enjoying it all for the first time. I couldn’t have felt a warmer Christmas glow if I had been at the foot of that New England village Christmas Christmas tree. Read more →
Sometimes friends will email me and ask for advice on what to do with a long layover in Paris. Or better yet, some friends will deliberately schedule a long layover, just to get a « Paris fix » (it’s like a drug you know)! If it were me, I would certainly schedule a long layover, but I live here so I am lucky to have Paris in my life very day…even the bad days.
Merci to Lucy Miller for the fabulous graphic!
But I am a big fan of fun 24 hour layovers in order to get a glimpse of a city or see a friend, so I have teamed up with CitizenM hotel to bring you the best of Prête-Moi Paris in a 24 hour plan of indulgence in all things Parisian.
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If you follow me on Instagram, you know I LOVE Treize Bakery… It’s dangerous to have a friend with such an incredible restaurant… my hips aren’t lying!
But image learning how to make all that incredible happy and home-cooked food, yourself! Eh oui!!! Laurel, the amazing magnificent Laurel, now offers cooking classes on Wednesday evenings. (Sign up in advance so you make sure you get a spot). She teaches techniques like how to make the four basic sauces and the base of all sauces (a simple combination of butter and flour but that needs to be very carefully mixed together and watched with an expert eye), or pie crust…light and flaky buttery pie crust…OH MY!!! Or how to make her famous carrot cake…Mmm hmmm… that’s what I’m talking about! Read more →
I headed off to the Marais the other day with friends Frank and Patricia, for a little indulgence. Our destination was the very talked-about very blogged-about Éclaire de Génie; a little concept store éclair shop, created by Christophe Adam, that is making the foodie scene turn their heads from the ever-famous over-instagramed (yes, I’m guilty) macaron. The éclairs are about twice the price of a single macaron, but they are at least twice as big, if not three times, and they are quite a bit more complex. With a whole slew of flavors to chose from, with eye-pleasing decorations and colors, these new sweet bites may very well take over the throne that the macaron has claimed for the past handful of years. Read more →
Parisians may grumble about them, but then tourists grumble about Parisians, so it’s only fair! But I’ll let you in on a little secret… Paris loves its tourists! Really??? you ask? Well, it’s only because they bring an enourmous amount of business to a country that is leaning more and more towards a services industry. Besides luxury, tourism is one of France’s big resources. +70% of the active populatin works in the service industry, which includes everything related to tourism. And Paris, being the most visited city in the world, really needs to open up its heart to tourists. We need them.
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Chéri and I celebrated our two year wedding anniversary with a romantic weekend away…. not too far for lack of budget and time. But really, in France, you don’t need to go far to find a place for romance. We took the train from Gare de Lyon (mid-strike mind you) and a half an hour from the Paris arrived at the pretty town of Fontainebleau.
Our lodging was through airbnb, Pheobe’s place. A little two room apartment nestled off of the rue de France, in a quiet little courtyard. Our view was of the charming ancient building behind us and the lovely tile rooftop beside us.
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A couple of months ago, I helped out Kasia Dietz and presented her bags at a promotional soirée given by the PR agency Willina (run by two of the most fabulous Parisian bloggers around! Sheily of Paris Maman et Moi, and Nathalie of The Parisienne
The theme of this bash was Sun in the City, to celebrate the arrival of Summer, and promote a few select brands that can help us do just that! And this time Kasia Dietz was attending the soirée too!
Willina then creates a fun « estory » from all of our tweets and instagrams, which we get to browse through the next day. Impressive to say the least given the sheer amount of social media posts we all published. Enjoy it here.
Greeted with fun colored flower necklaces, we mingled until we were divided into groups, and went from one brand presentation back to the refreshment bar, then off to another brand presentation; all which were set up in lovely little scenes around the fabulous venue which double during the day as an art workshop.
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Dreamed of a trip to Paris for years?
So… It’s finally happening… Yaaaaaaay!
Now what do you do first?
Moi, I would make a list of all the things I wanted to do, plan all my outfits, probably create an elaborate Pinterest board, and then search for hotels. That’s part of the fun of planning a trip. What isn’t as fun is the tedious reserving of all of your activities. But, great news for you (first time Paris visitor), there is someone else who can take care of all those reservations for you!
PARIS City VISION allows you to visit Paris and enjoy the city of lights without feeling like you are your own baffled travel agent. Many people on their first trip to Paris leave it all un-planned and un-reserved until they get here, and then it is a fatiguing struggle to fit it all in and most of the time you don’t understand half of what is going on nor how to get to where you need to go. Right?
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I met Alexis when I visited my ultimate dream apartment in Paris. He was the owner. He has since done away with luxury apartments and is now focusing his attention on something closer to his heart : all things made in France. Just a handful of months ago he opened up Gab & Jo (named after his two kids) where there is something made-in-France for everyone, EVEN for the FRENCH.
Alexis is incroyablement friendly and very enthusiastic. I met him at the boutique as he sauntered back from grabbing his lunch and a few macarons. He eagerly showed me around his boutique, excited about the smallest details and most delightful elements of his endeavor. Seriously, Arnaud Montebourg should come in to visit for inspiration. Read more →