A Paris Primer: Where To Go And Where To Stay
WHERE TO STAY
Paris Marriott Hotel Champs-Elysées
70 Avenue Des Champs Elysées. Being the only hotel along the Avenue des Champs-Elysées, the Paris Marriott Hotel Champs-Elysées gives guests a unique opportunity to experience classic Parisian lifestyle with a breathtaking view of the City of Lights. It boasts 192 luxurious, spacious rooms and suites, with amenities and impeccable service. The hotel is situated close the Arc de Triomphe and the Palace de la Concorde.
Hotel du Louvre
Place Andre Malraux, Paris. Situated between the Louvre Museum, the Opera Garnier and the Palais Royal, Hyatt's Hotel du Louvre features 177 unique guest rooms and suites that overlook some of Paris' most beautiful sights. Enjoy breakfast on the terrace of the hotel's restaurant, Bassarie du Louvre, known for its chic Parisian cuisine and atmosphere, during the summer season. Catering to the most discerning traveler, the hotel offers a vast range of services with the concierge team being composed of members of the prestigious Clefs d'Or Association.
14 Rue de la Tremoille, Paris. Hausmann era built La Tremoille is in the heart of the Golden Triangle, a stone throw's away from Montaigne Avenue, Georges V Avenue and the Champs-Elysées. The interiors of the remodeled hotel are contemporary and elegant in style, with 93 spacious, modern rooms. The suites offer a panoramic view of the Paris rooftops and bathrooms are outfitted with dark marble and warm woodwork, deep soaking tubs, and Molton Brown bath products. The Centre de Soins, the hotel's spa, create personalized programs of relaxation and wellness created just for you.
Mon Hotel Paris
1 Rue d'Argentine, Paris. Hiding between Avenue Foch and the place de l'Etoile, just before the Arc de Triomphe, the Mon Hotel is a refined designer boutique hotel with a vibrant and chic atmosphere. Interiors are designed by the renowned Aurelia Santoni. Book an executive room on the top floors, which are on the corner of the building and offer a spledid view of Avenue Foch.
Grand Hotel du Palais Royal
4 Rue De Valois. The historic Grand Hotel du Palais Royal has just completed full renovation by world renowned architect Pierre-Yves Rochon and has transformed it into a high-end boutique hotel of timeless elegance and quiet luxury. While its location is perfect, being just steps away from the Louvre, the Opera Garnier and the Saint-Honore fashion designers, the hotel is also dedicated to providing guests the most distinguished and discreet personalized service. After a day of exploring Paris monuments nearby, unwind with a Turkish bath at the Carita spa or have a bewitching dining experience at chef Jean-Yves Bournot's Le Lulli.
WHERE TO DINE
Image by Niall Kennedy Flickr
Alain Ducasse Au Plaza Athénée
Hotel Plaza Athénée, 25 Montaigne Avenue. Taking an architectural approach to dining, Ducasse's Plaza Athénée seeks out harmony through simplicity in serving modern French cuisine, prepared with only the best ingredients and sourced according to the seasons. The interiors are beautiful with finely molded off-white walls complemented by modern table settings, illuminated by an immense crystal chandelier suspended on invisible strings. Sample the three-starred Michelin restaurant's refreshed Brittany langoustines with golden caviar or Gascone Bay Turbot with warmed oysters.
Restaurant Guy Savoy
18 Rue Troyon. Consistently enthalling diners from all over the world, Restaurant Guy Savoy lives up to the culinary prowess of its namesake. The three-star Michelin restaurant signature dishes include an artichoke soup dressed with black truffle alongside a brioche slathered with truffle butter and a chocolate orb dessert that is devastatingly delicious. Guy Savoy reserves one table for guests to indulge in a unique modern French gourmet experience each day for lunch, so make sure to inquire about this when making a reservation.
Hotel Le Meurice, 228 Rue de Rivoli. Serving the most elegant and world-class in classic European cuisine, the extravagant restaurant is arguably a lifetime experience. Lavish offerings include sautéed blue lobster with champagne and scallops with white alba truffle foam, paired with exquisite wines and champagnes that are kept in a specially created wine cellar that opens to the dining room. Of note is a special chef's table in the kitchen that lets guests have a peek into how the food is created.
Cristal Room Baccarat
11 Place des Etats-Unis. Located on the first floor of the extravagant Baccarat Museum, the former private mansion of Marie-Laure de Noailles, the Cristal Room restaurant is the perfect place to enjoy a long lunch as to best appreciate the Baccarat crustal chandeliers and ornaments. Recently refurbished by Philippe Starck and serving inspired takes on modern French cuisine by chef Guy Martin, it is also a perfect setting for private parties and receptions.
84 Rue de Varenne. Situated along the Left Bank, Breton-born Alain Passard's three-starred Michelin restaurant is dedicated to creating traditional, harmonious French cuisine that boasts the highest quality in ingredients supplied by its own three kitchen gardens, which produce 40 tons of fresh, all natural ingredients every year. Experience Passard's revered cuisine with a prix fixed lunch menu or lobster braised in vin jaune from the Jura.
WHERE TO GO
Cathedrale de Notre Dame de Paris
6 Place d Parvis. In the heart of the city, this gothic cathedral is one of Paris' top attractions. Climb up 387 steps to the top of the Notre Dame and gaze upon Montmarte to the north, the Arc de Triomphe to the west, and St-Sulpice and the Panthéon to the south. You may also explore below the cathedral floor into the crypt, where some medieval structures and remains are on display.
Musée du Louvre
99 Rue de Rivoli. Once a fort, and then a palace, the majestic Louvre is now the world's largest art museum and home to three great masterpieces: the "Mona Lisa," the Venus de Milo, and the headless Winged Victory of Samothrace, among so many other works of art throughout the centuries.
Parc du Champ de Mars. Enigmatically Parisian, no trip to Paris is complete without a visit to the Eiffel Tower. Enjoy a panoramic view of Paris by walking or taking the elevator to the top or gaze up at La Tour Eiffel during a twilight picnic at the Parc du Champs. At night, the Eiffel Tower illuminates the golden city with thousands of flickering lightbulbs and is a sight to behold.
8 Rue Scribe, Place de l'Opera. Having played host to the fictional Phantom of the Opera for years, the opulent Opéra Garnier is stunning piece of architecture and a Paris destination favorite. There are guided tours within that reveal the history of the opera house but if you want to truly experience Palais Garnier, book a ticket to a ballet or opera performance months in advance.
Rue Auguste Comte. Just south of the city center and with 60 acres of ample green space, paths and formal gardens, stepping into the Jardin du Luxembourg is like walking into a French film. Especially great for families; you could relax with a picnic, float sailboats at the Grand Basin or ride a pony. The Musée du Luxembourg is also worth a trip and holds fantastic rotating collections of 19-century art.
Champs Elysées and Avenue Montaigne
Definitely the most famous shopping street in Paris, the Champs Elysées starts at the Palace de la Concord and runs west to the Arc de Triomphe. Avenue Montaigne and Avenue des Champs-Elysées is best for designer and trendy chain store shopping, with upscale boutiques such as Valentino, Gucci, Chanel, Cartier, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Fendi and Hugo Boss lining the streets.
Louvre-Tuileries and Faubourg Saint-Honoré
Part of the Louvre-Tuileries neighborhood, the Faubourg Saint-Honoré district is home to the créme de la créme in designer fashion, chic home furnishings and quality cosmetics and skin care. Here you can find Versace, Hermes, Yves Saint Laurant, Colette, perfumer Serge Lutens, among upscale vintage furniture shops, jewelry and art.
Les Halles and Rue de Rivoli
A monstrous underground mall, Le Forum des Halles is home to many trendy global chain stores. The Rue de Rivoli similarly offers everything, starting at the Place de la Concorde, running east to Saint-Paul-Saint-Louis Church and is in close proximity to the Lourve. Here, you can find national and international chain stores such as Zara, H&M, Yves Rocher, and more.
Boulevard Haussmann and Boulevard Montmarte
Runs west to east through the 8th and 9th arrondissements of Paris and home to two famous department stores, Galaries Lafayette and Au Printemps. Apart from the two massive department stores, there are a number of high-end boutiques and old covered arcades (galleries) such as the Galerie Viviene, which houses luxury designers including Jean-Paul Gaultier, as well as the Musée Grévin.
Find chic classic design, rare books and gifts, and unique home furnishings along St. Germain, Rue André-des-Arts and Rue de Sèvres. Paco Rabanne and Sonia Rykiel have boutiques, while the gourmet market found in Paris' famous department store Le Bon Marché is a visit every food lover should make.