Friday, December 20, 2013

The Best Gift! Paris for the Holidays

Check out my article on Bonjour Paris on visiting Paris during the holidays.  And, best wishes for wonderful, festive holidays where ever you are!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Paris For New Years? Book at Le Saotico!

If you happen to be in Paris for New Years eve, consider booking a table for Le Saotico's degustation menu.  This is a steal for 80 Euros.  The talented chef/owner Hughes and his lovely wife Anne who runs the front of the house, pay close attention to freshness, deliciousness, and assuring a great experience for their guests.  Definitely book.  Here is the menu:
Pour le Nouvel An, Le Sâotico vous propose un menu Dégustation.

Coupe de Champagne "Haton" avec mise en bouche

Foie gras de Canard mi-cuit en terrine, gelée au Beaumes de Venise

Mille feuille croustillant de Homard et Coques, sauce armoricaine et oignons caramélisés
Sorbet au pamplemousse et Martini Dry
Civet de Biche en venaison, Marrons, Oignons grelots et Lard fumé
Fricassée de Saint-Jacques au confit de carottes, parfum d'Orange et Vanille
Tournedos de filet de Boeuf, morilles au Foie gras, Gratin au Parmesan
Tarte fine d'endives au Chèvre chaud, Miel et Noix
Cinq desserts en panaché
"Crème Brulée", Moelleux au chocolat, Mousse au caramel beurre salé, Gratin de fruits au sabayon de Champagne, Mini vacherin aux Framboises

Café Illy et Petits fours

Prix : 80€ par personnes
Réservation :

Excellent new map of the Marais

The Marais, in the 3rd and 4th arrondissements, is one of my favorite (and lot's of peoples favorite quarters in Paris).  Gorgeous historic architecture, great shops, the Place des Vosges, good cafes and bistros, Mariage Freres historic salon du thé and so much more, this is a Paris quarter that you could happily spend your entire vacation in.

Check out   This is a very good blog focused on the Marais with tons of excellent information.  Paris Marais has recently produced a new map of the Marais including its notable sites and it is a fantastic resource.  Free to download.  You may want to subscribe to their e-newsletter.

Happy holidays!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Brassai Exhibition at the Hotel de Ville. Great Paris Photography

Paris City Hall is the site of an exhibition of one of the greatest of all contemporary photographers: the intensely luminous works of Brassaï. 

 “Brassai, for the Love of Paris” shows the sweep of Brassai's continuing love affair with Paris and with all the peoples, humble and haute, whomake Paris the mythical place it is.
Born in 1899 in Transylvania, Gyulus Halasz adopted the name Brassaï when he started to photograph in 1929. He moved to Paris in 1924, after completing his art studies in Berlin. He joined the Surrealists and deeply admired their sensibilities.

A tireless wanderer through night-time Paris, Brassaï also had an eye for the capital 's daylight charms along the quais of the Seine, in the Luxembourg Gardens, along the Grands Boulevards.
“Brassai, Pour l’amour de Paris” run until March 8, 2014.
10 am to 7 pm, Monday to Saturday.  Free of charge.
Hôtel de Ville de Paris, 5 rue de Lobau (4e)
Metro: Hotel de Ville

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Fromagerie Hisada. Impeccable French Cheese With an Asian Twist.

Check out my article on the terrific Fromagerie Hisada on rue de Richelieu in central Paris.  This was published 9.26.13 on Bonjour Paris.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Les Berges du Seine.. The riverbanks are a glorious new park

As of June 2013, the Seine Riverbanks between the bridges Pont de l’Alma and Pont Royal are dedicated to pedestrians. Sports, recreation, conversation and respite for all!
The section of the left bank of the River Seine situated between the Pont de l’Alma and the Musée d’Orsay is now an unbroken pedestrian zone 2.3 kilometers long with no motor vehicles in sight.
What will you find, aside from gorgeous views?  There is a mix for active and 'passive' enjoyment. Running tracks, gardens, children’s activities and much more, the new-look river banks have drawn  enthusiastic public from the moment they opened. Runners of every level head for the tracks at the  dawn.  Then come visitors, for a little relaxation before a day of sight-seeing.  During the day children play, people of all ages stroll, in the evenings a youthful crowd gathers along the many terraces and embankments for a drink or two. 
Another example of Paris' brilliant re-visioning of public space and 'parks'.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Sunny (Two Story) Terrace at 25 Est

If you like to explore up and coming Paris quarters, hop on the metro and ride to Stalingrad.  This area, along the Bassin de la Vilette, above the Canal St. Martin, has been developing into one of the hottest spots for Parisians in-the-know.  The city is investing heavily in making this a desirable residential quarter. 

Paris Plages, the 'beach' that arrives in Paris each summer along the Seine, is also installed along the lovely Bassin de la Villette making this a nontouristy summer hotspot for relaxation.

25° Est  is a bar with inexpensive bar food (good quality) and a wide range of libations, that has not one, but two terraces.  A sunny terrace with a water view is always sought after in Paris.  This one, er two, is no exception.

No exhaust fumes, regular concerts and musical performances and more.
Add to this two art-house cinemas nearby plus the Cité des Sciences and the Cité de la Musique, and you have the perfect spot for summer!

10, Place Bataille de Stalingrad.  Open 12-11 daily.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Something to make summer even sweeter.. new Pierre Herme in the Marais

Macaron and pastry master Pierre Hermé has opened his most recent boutique right in the heart of the Marais!  Great news for Marais-lovers and Hermé fanatics, this new shop will be open through the summer and sells all those glorious macarons and pastries that make Hermé shops look more like exclusive jewelry shops than patisseries...  pack a few Euros and pay a visit. You won't regret it.

Address: 18 rue Sainte-Croix-de-la-Bretonnerie, 75004
Nearest transport: Hôtel de Ville (1,11)
Hours: Open every day from 10:30am-10:30pm
Telephone: 01 43 54 47 77

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Sroll Along the Seine... Les Berges de Seine

The newly-opened quays of the Seine along the Left Bank of the 7th from the Musée d’Orsay (Pont Royal) to the Musée Quai Branly (Pont Alma) have replaced a noisy vehicle roadway with floating gardens, a climbing wall, picnic spots, cafés, bars, kids activities, open-air concerts, yoga sessions, and many other things to keep pedestrians entertained (the evening seems livelier than daytime, at the moment). Open year-round.  Check this out for a new Seine-side strolling option.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Summer Paris Sales Are On! June 26-July 30

The big, bi-annual Paris 'Soldes' are about to kick off.  July and January are the times, give or take a few days, that these substantial sales run in the Grands Magasins and in small boutiques.  If you have a certain item you've been wanting to buy hit the shops early on.

Remember, if you buy a substantial amount in one store (over 190 euros) take your passport to fill in the 'detaxe' forms so you can get a refund on your VAT taxes. The big stores like Galleries Lafayette and Printemps usually have special offices within the stores where you can file for the refund.

Great time to stock up on French chic.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Market Tours and Cooking Classes in the UZES area this summer

One of my favorite providers of market walks and intimately scaled cooking classes in Paris is now offering glorious-sounding market explorations and cooking classes in the Uzes area of Provence in July and August.  Meet outstanding food and wine artisans, tour authentic markets bursting with all that gorgeous bounty of the south and have a wonderful couple of hours with a charming accomplished cook.

The side benefit is that you also learn alot about French cuisine and culture in a low key engaging context.  Contact me at for more information.  I know this will be a popular offering so don't wait too long to make your stay in Provence even more delicious!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Xin Jin Lou, A Foodie's Gem in the 13th

Check out my article on Xin Jin Lou in Paris.. fantastic French food in a Chinese Traiteur out in the 13th... worth the short bus or RER trip from central Paris. Posted today on Bonjour Paris, an always excellent info letter on Paris.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

European Museums Night is May 18

European Museums Night. Stay up with culture and art!

May 18, 2013
If you will be in Paris on May 18th,  save some energy and plunge into  La Nuite Européenne des Musées, the European Museum Night, when museums stay open late and hundreds of special events are planned across Paris. Discover the cultural heritage of Paris while enjoying concerts, varied events and free entrance to many museums.  

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Boudin Exhibition at the Jacquemart Andre

The Jacquemart André museum is showing a lovely exhibition of Eugene Boudin's paintings and pastels.  This is the first show of Boudin's work in many decades and while not huge, is proving to be an extremely popular 'must-see' for art lovers. Monet once referred to Boudin as the man who taught him how to paint.  Monet and other Impressionists painted with Boudin in the lovely Honfleur area of Normandy and enjoyed long friendships.

The Jacquemart André is a gorgeous 19th century mansion, once the home to a wealthy art collecting couple, who gifted the mansion and its contents to the foundation that now runs the museum.  The 'café' is the original dining room and features lovely tapestries, fireplaces and painted ceilings by Tiepolo.  In the 9th eme. Open daily.  Boudin show is there through June, it is well worth a visit.

Festival des Nomades May 24-26

The Marais sure knows how to put on a party.  The annual Festival des Nomades sponsored by the Mairie of the 3rd arrondissement is three day feast of gallery openings, performances, ephemeral events all over the Marais. has a copy of the 40 page (yes 40 page) pdf outlining all the events.

If you are in Paris in late May check this festival out.  It is sure to have something to engage and delight you!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Savoie Cheese, Charcuterie and Wine Bar Near Luxembourg

I'm in Paris now with my France Through Eyes of Faith group having a wonderful time exploring the spirited mind of the middle ages.  In the bodily nourishment department I'm discovering several new gems that I'll share on this blog over the next several days.  Les Fromages de Savoie is a lovely new cheese, charcuterie and wine shop/cheese-bar just steps from the Luxembourg Gardens on 9 rue de Corneille (runs from Vaugirad down towards Odeon along the side of the Theatre de Europe).

This gorgeous place is open 10-9 Mondays through Saturdays. You can buy Beaufort and numerous other delicious Savoie cheeses, plus charcuterie and sausages from the region. They sell Savoie wines and some prepared foods including a line of fabulous looking soups that include cheese... have microwave, will dine!

This is a great spot to stop in for assembling a picnic or for a bite to eat in their downstairs cheese bar.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Monsters In Fashion

The Gaite Lyrique theatre in the 3rd is a place worth bookmarking. This hyper-creative theatre and performance space offers films, performances and shows.  Currently there is a fanciful exhibition of fifty major fashion designers who designed their 'inner monster'. Playful, engaging.  Fun for all ages. Check it out.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Shared cab or private cabs from Cityzen Mobility

Check out a new service that is part of the 'solutions' to making Paris easier to move around in, and in and out of.

CityZen is a pre-booked private OR shared taxi service that will you to and from the airports, the railstations, and within Paris to set destinations.  You can book a cab that will be shared with others or book a private cab for up to five people.  Book on the easy to use website and voila, you have a guaranteed price for your trip and can pre-pay before your trip, up to 24 hours in advance.

Note the caveat that for airport cabs that are shared you cannot bring more than a carry on bag. That may be a problem for international travelers... but if you are booking a private cab, say for two, email CityZen and ask if there is room for big bags..

I'm using the service for two trips with clients to Gare Montparnasse to catch trains for Chartres and Angers as part of my France Through Eyes of Faith trip in early April. I've been very impressed by the responsiveness of the staff and the ease of booking... now to see if it all works!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Valentine's Day in Paris

Paris and romance are a natural pairing... how about booking a private guide for a very special shopping tour on Valentine's Day, or, for a foodie-cultural combo like an Eiffel Tower visit plus a wine and cheese tasting, or, an Eiffel Tower visit plus a romantic dinner?

Maybe you would love to spend a relaxed mid afternoon savoring the richest, best hot chocolate in Paris, a sweet thought that!

Contact Your Great Days in Paris, for Valentine's Day or any day in Paris. You want your time to be memorable, for the right reasons!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Delish Veggie Food in the Haut Marais

Paris is upping its game on the number and quality of vegetarian and vegan restaurants that offer gluten free or other dietary options that taste great and look appealing.

Café Pinson, in the Upper Marais, is one of the newest in a quality emerging field. Hip design, carefully made dishes, a bit of creativity.  This is a great address to put on your 'should try' list.

Café Pinson is mostly vegan and gluten free.  There is a selection of raw dishes on offer plus a fresh juice bar.  Bread is crusty and good but is not gluten free. The chef is currently working on a recipe for gluten free bread. Risottos and dishes based on fresh fruits and quality vegetables abound.  Dishes are not drowning in cheese... this is a sophisticated little spot with a warm welcome.
Café Pinson does a nice Sunday Brunch including savory Madeleines, slow cooked eggs, a vegetable mousse, raw or cooked granola, fresh juice, and a tasty spread made with raw hazelnuts. Brunch has become all the rage in Paris and this is a good place to settle in and enjoy..
Café Pinson
6 rue de Forez, Paris 3
Metro: Filles du Calvaire
Open 9AM to 7PM, Monday to Friday
Saturday 10AM to 7PM
Sunday 10AM to 5PM