The city of lights offers a wide range of incredible places that enchant visitors year after year. François du Chastel, young entrepreneur and creator of the famous brand of slippers Chatelles (www.mychatelles.com) shares with us all the coolest addresses for our Insider Paris Guide.
WHAT TO SEE
St Germain des Prés (Paris VI-VII)
The VI and VII arrondissement are definitely the most elegant of all Paris: long tree-lined avenues, historic cafés, hidden churches and quiet squares. The air we breathe is the same one that Simone de Beauvoir and Jean Paul Sartre breathed in the ’40s and’ 50s, only with the exception of the new trendy shops and clubs. Walk along the boulevard and stop by the homonymous church. Get lost in more defilate streets that always hide enchanting views. For coffee, Café de Flore and Les Deux Magots are the historical addresses of the neighborhood, as well as the Brasserie Lipp for lunch or dinner.
Musée Picasso-Paris (5 rue de Thorigny 75003 Paris; +33 1 85 56 00 36)
Sketches, studies, drawings, paintings, sculptures, photographs, the life and work of Picasso. The Hôtel Salé, one of the most beautiful mansion at the end of 1700, hosts the collection which includes more than 5,000 works by Picasso and takes the visitors throughout a unique and personal journey. The renovation that lasted five years has also increased the exhibition space and allowed to showcase some works that have never been exhibited until 2014.
Fondation Louis Vuitton (8 Avenue du Mahatma Gandhi 75116 Paris; + 33 1 40 69 96 00)
Born from the desire to give the Parisians a unique exhibition space for art and culture, the Foundation was inaugurated in 2014 after eight years of constructions. The architect, Frank Gehry, took inpsiration from the stained glass windows of the Grand Palais and the Palmarium, located inside the adjacent Jardin d’Acclimatation, and built twelve glass sails for a total of 13500 sqm of stained glass.
Le Marais (Paris III – IV)
Le Marais was the favorite French aristocracy quarter (here you will find the most beautiful mansions of the whole city) until the XVII century, a period when the nobility began to shift to the Faubourg St-Germain. After this time, the Marais became the Jewish neighborhood and jews also built a synagogue (10 rue Pavée). Since the 80s it has become an important center for the LGBT culture, and today it is known for its hip atmosphere, art galleries, trendy restaurants and shops. Don’t miss Place des Vosges, rue du Temple, Musée Carnavalet and the Hôtel de Beauvais.
Île Saint Louis (Paris IV)
Some think it’s Paris’ jewel with its quiet streets, away from mass tourism, the markets, the fromageries and boulangeries: a small oasis that remained intact since 1800. At 31 rue St-Louis en l’Ile you can taste the authentic Berthillon ice cream that became famous thanks to the dark chocolate and mango flavours.
Rue Cambon (Paris I)
Coco Chanel lived at the Ritz but worked at nr. 31 of this road which has become an icon for all fashion enthusiasts. The building consists of four floors: the Chanel boutique on the ground floor, the dressing rooms of haute couture on the second, the private apartment of Coco Chanel on the third and her creative workshop on the top floor.
Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré (Paris VIII)
The Mecca of Haute Couture where you can find the stores of the main luxury french brands. And even if you are not willing to buy anything, walking up this street will make you feel the most authentic french scent.
Musée Marmottan Monet (2 Rue Louis Boilly 75016 Paris; +33 1 44 96 50 33)
Open to the public since 1934, it is one of the largest collections of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings in the world: Monet, Degas, Renoir, Morisot, Manet, Sisley, Pissarro, Gauguin, Signac for a total of over three hundred masterpieces. It also has an important collection of Empire period craft works. Here you’ll admire ‘Impression’, the Monet painting that gave the name to the Impressionist art movement.
WHERE TO SLEEP
Hotel Amour ( 8 Rue de Navarin, 9 Arr.; +33 1 48 78 31 80)
The coolest address in Paris, not only for the hotel but also for its restaurant and bar.
Rooms from 155 euro per night.
Hotel Montmartre Mon Amour (7 Rue Paul Albert, 18 Arr.; +33 1 46 06 03 03)
Small boutique hotel in Montmartre, only 24 rooms. Rooms from 80 euro per night.
Hotel Montalembert (3 Rue Montalembert, 7 Arr.; +33 1 45 49 68 68)
Elegant hotel near Rue du Barc (VII arr.). Great rooftop bar. Rooms from 210 euro per night.
Terrass Hotel (12-14 Rue Joseph de Maistre, 18 Arr.; +33 1 46 06 72 85)
Probably the best view in town. Rooms from 190 euro per night.
Hotel Meurice (228 rue de Rivoli, 1 Arr.; +33 1 44 58 10 10)
The most iconic hotel in Paris from 1815. Rooms from 700 euro per night.
Hotel Récamier (3 Place de Saint Sulpice, 6 Arr.; +33 1 43 26 04 89)
Located on one of the most beautiful square in Paris, Place de Saint Sulpice. A home away from home. Rooms from 190 euro per night.
A la Villa Madame (44 Rue Madame, 6 Arr.; +33 1 45 48 02 81)
In the heart of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. For sound proof nights. Rooms from 150 euro per night.
Le Bristol Paris (112 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, 1 Arr.; +33 1 53 43 43 00)
Opened in 1925, it represents french luxury at the highest level. Rooms from 750 euro per night.
WHERE TO EAT
Derrière (69 Rue des Gravilliers, 3 Arr.; +33 1 44 61 91 95)
A trendy hotspot: for those who want to eat and drink in a real house.
Caviar Kaspia (17 Place de la Madeleine, I Arr.; +33 1 42 65 33 32)
One of the most exclusive and famous addresses in Paris. A favourite of movie stars and beautiful people.
Hotel du Nord (102 Quai de Jemmapes, 11 Arr; +33 1 40 40 78 78)
Minipalais (3 avenue Winston Churchill, 8 Arr.; +33 1 42 56 42 42)
Georges (Centre Pompidou, Palais Beaubourg, Place Georges Pompidou, 2 Arr.)
Great views on the city and design vibes inside the Centre Pompidou.
Le Mama Shelter (109 Rue del Bagnolet, 20 Arr.; +33 1 43 48 48 48)
Ralph’s (137 Boulevard Saint Germain, 6 Arr.; +33 1 44 77 76 00)
Cozy and classy dehor, perfect during the beautiful season.
Fraiche Paris (Rue Vicq d’Azir, 10 Arr.; +33 1 40 37 54 23)
BARS AND NIGHTLIFE
Le Montana – Restaurant Le Gauche Caviar (Rue Saint-Benoit, 6 Arr.; +33 1 53 63 79 20)
Inside the famous Hotel Le Montana, in Saint-Germain-des-Pres, Le Gauche Caviar and Club Le Montana are among the coolest addresses in town. It’s hard to get in, especially to the club, but the time spent in line is worth the fun inside.
Castel (15 Rue Princesse, 6 Arr.; +33 1 40 51 52 80)
The legendary club in Saint-Germain-des-Prés, known for the red colour of its walls. Only members.
Raspoutine (58 Rue de Bassano; +33 1 47 20 02 90)
One of the historic clubs in Paris. Severe face control.
Hotel Costes (239-241 Rue Saint Honoré, 1 Arr.; +33 1 42 44 50 00)
The address for fashionistas and viveurs.
Le Perchoir (36 Rue de la Verrerie, 3 Arr.; +33 9 77 40 14 00)
On the roof of the BHV Marais hotel, a classic in the summer.
Bar8 at Mandarin Oriental Hotel (251 Rue Saint-Honoré, 1 Arr.; +33 1 70 98 78 88)
Pure luxury and great cocktails. Mandarin Oriental style. Perfect for a business meeting.
Le Pompon (39 Rue des Petites Ècuries, 10 Arr.)
Behind Les Folies Bergere, hipster crowd and cool vibes.
Rose Bakery (46 Rue des Martyrs, 75009 Paris; +33 1 42 82 12 80)
This small boulangerie has built a reputation with its delicious homemade cakes and quick dishes for lunch: risotto, soups, customizable salads and pizza. Perfect for the afternoon tea accompanied by a carrot cake or, for the greedy ones, by a slice of chocolate and chestnuts cake. Also great for Sunday brunch with scrambled eggs and strictly organic smoked salmon. Rose Bakery is also in the III, VII and XII arrondissement.
Le Pavillon de la Reine (28 Place des Vosges, 75004 Paris; +33 1 40 29 19 19)
The “Queen’s Pavilion” owes its name to Anne of Austria, who had a habit of staying here. It is a luxury boutique hotel in the heart of the Marais, a few steps away from Place des Vosges. The beautiful property is located within a quiet courtyard, and is characterized by walls covered with ivy and shaded gardens. Within the hotel it is the Honesty bar, offering tea and coffee, but also cocktails and wine.
Angelina (226 rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris; +33 1 42 60 82 00)
The classic par excellence on the afternoon tea scene in Paris. It has ten cafés only in France and many other located between the UAE, Thailand, China and Japan. Founded in 1903 by an Austrian pastry chef, Antoine Rumpelmayer, who dedicated the name to his niece, he reached worldwide success thanks to two products: the hot chocolate “the African”, made uniquely with a mélange of cocoa coming from Niger, Ghana and Ivory Coast and whose recipe remains secret since the beginning, and the “Mont-Blanc” which combines meringue, Chantilly cream and vermicelli chestnut puree.
Le Bar du Bristol (112 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré 75008 Paris; +33 1 53 43 43)
The bar at the Bristol, historic luxury hotel on Faubourg Saint-Honoré, is a favorite among Parisians who want to greet friends with a cup of tea or a cocktail. From Tuesday to Saturday it also offer evenings with different DJs who mix electronic music with vintage pieces.
WHERE TO SHOP
Chatelles (94 rue du Bac 75007 Paris; + 33 1 42 22 20 46)
In 2012 François du Chastel left forever London and a promising career in finance and returned to Paris to launch his shoe brand. Chatelles produces women’s slippers 100% handmade and they can be customized in color, tassels or initials. Since they have been spotted at the royal feet of Pippa Middleton, they achieved international success and are now sold in 14 boutiques around the world, as well as on their online website, www.mychatelles.com.
Soeur (88 rue Bonaparte 75006 Paris; +33 1 46 34 19 33)
Soeur is the innovative brand founded by two sisters, Domitille and Angélique Brion, who have decided to join forces to dress young girls between 10 and 18 years. No longer children and not yet girls, this is the target, difficult but stimulating, which the Brion sisters have chosen for their creations. Today they have four boutiques in Paris, one in Lyon and one in Bordeaux.
Merci (111 Boulevard Beaumarchais 75003 Paris; + 33 1 42 77 00 33)
Merci was created in 2009 in the heart of the historic district of Haute-Marais. The founders wanted a space that would combine the best of fashion, furniture for the house and design. They gather in a building of 1,500 sqm spread over three floors: vintage and contemporary furniture, emerging fashion brands and already well known collections, impulse purchases, cheap or rare pieces.
Fleux (39 Rue Sainte-Croix de la Bretonnerie 75004 Paris; +33 1 42 78 27 20)
For all those who are tired from IKEA, there are cheap furnitures made even outside Sweden. Fleux in fact is a famous French brand that offers a wide range of decorative and colorful design pieces. The two main concepts, dear to the founders, are the superfluous and the luxurious, although many pieces have a purpose such as lamps made in old cans or bookshelves shaped like a hand.
LECLAIREUR (26 Avenue des Champs-Elysées 75008 Paris; + 33 1 48 87 10 22)
Since 1980 LECLAIREUR has always presented itself as a visionary force in the fashion world (women and men), lifestyle and design: “LECLAIREUR always looks ahead, dealing with the future, to dare, to stop – it is our job to seduce and to astonish “. In the six boutiques scattered throughout the city you can find emerging designers or names already etched in the elite of fashion such as Ann Demeulemeester and Dries Van Noten.
Diptyque (34 boulevard Saint-Germain 75005 Paris; +33 1 43 26 77 44)
The legendary Parisian luxury boutique specializes since 1961 in scented candles, with which they became famous worldwide, perfumes, body treatments and facials. Today candles have come to more than fifty different fragrances and are sold all over the world, from the US to Japan, as well as in the five boutiques of Paris.
APC (38 Rue Madame 75006 Paris; +33 1 42 39 84 46)
The acronym stands for “Atelier de Production et de Creation”, a sober and simple name that fully reflects the creations of designer Jean Touitou. The collections for women and men of this brand, in fact, are described as “minimalist chic”: solid colors, simple but elegant cuts, which made APC famous in France and in the world.
Adelline (54 rue Jacob 75006 Paris; +33 1 47 03 07 18)
Adelline Roussel is a young traveler who divides her time between Paris and Jaipur and has created a line of jewelry that expresses the link between East and West, between art and craft, between male and female. Adelline works only 22k gold with rubies, quartz, tourmalines, aquamarines, topazes, amethysts and garnets and sells her creations, as well as in the rue Jacob’s boutique, also in New York, Gent and Tokyo.
Le Bon Marché (24 rue de Sèvres 75007 Paris; +33 1 44 39 80 00)
The Parisian aristocracy supermarket. Founded in 1852 by Aristide Boucicaut, it was the world’s first shopping mall. The food department is luxurious and unforgettable, with a sublime selection of food even for a quick lunch.
Galerie Sentou Raspail (26 boulevard Raspail 75007 Paris; +33 1 45 49 00 05)
Sentou is a cult gallery located on boulevard Raspail that exposes all the latest contemporary designer creations. Reference icon in the field of design and art de vivre, it hosts furniture, lamps, fabrics and tableware that bind together modernity and poetry.
And just for the vibe: Colette (213 rue Saint Honoré 75001 Paris; +33 1 55 35 33 90)
Probably the most famous boutique in Paris. You can find everything that is considered hip and trendy: toys, newspapers, furniture, jewelry and men’s and women’s collections.
THE SECRET ADDRESS
Deyrolle (46 rue du Bac 75007 Paris; +33 1 42 22 30 07)
Deyrolle is an eclectic space where visitors can find for sale wonderful examples from the natural world. From the long tables full of butterflies, spiders and various insects, to the incredible rooms with lions, zebras, bears, antelopes, tigers, deer, ostriches and peacocks embalmed. It was founded in 1831 by Jean-Baptiste Deyrolle, who was one of the first to use taxidermy for educational purposes, to encourage the study and love of nature. Today it remains an absolutely unique place and an institution in Paris.