If you are ever in Paris be sure to spend an afternoon at the original haute couture house where Yves Saint Laurent spent nearly 30 years designing his collections, now known as the Musée Yves Saint Laurent. I spent the majority of my time there lingering in the atelier which has been kept exactly as Yves left it. From experience I know a fashion studio can be stressful, chaotic and fast paced, but there was something very peaceful about this room in the afternoon Parisian light.
For a real treat you can visit the Chanel store in Paris at 31 Rue Cambon which is where Coco opened up her very first dress shop in 1910, her old apartment is still preserved just upstairs. I picked up a couple souvenirs while I was there including a new lipstick color and the now insta famous La Crème Main. Grab a bite to eat afterwards just around the corner at Mademoiselle.
Patrick and I decided to celebrate us both turning 30 this summer by taking a trip to Paris where we met up with my Sweet & Spark Co-Founder, Jillian, who was also celebrating her birthday. Summer babies gotta stick together!
Where to Shop
The two most infamous shopping malls have to be Le Bon Marché and Galeries Lafayette where you can find just about anything, I especially love the abundance of perfume selections at Parisian department stores. For a more intimate shopping experience try exploring the quaint boutique lined streets of Le Marais where you can find the Japan based Vintage Paris store filled with heritage finds from Chanel, Dior and Hermès. I also picked up a few breezy clothing items for the south of France at L'Appartement Sézane.
Where to Eat
Tucked away in the gardens of the Palais Royal is the iconic Café Kitsuné which is the perfect spot to sip on a coffee and people watch underneath their shaded tables. I ordered the hot chocolate along with a sablé cookie. For breakfast visit the Aussie owned restaurant Hardware Société inside the charming Montmartre neighborhood. Patrick and I split a sweet and a savory dish there; the fried brioche with fruit and the scrambled egg sandwich with salsa. If you’re in the mood for a traditional stack of pancakes Hollybelly is also a great option, bonus points to them for serving breakfast all day. Spend a long evening sipping wine and trying new cheeses at the Monbleu fromagerie, their radish and butter appetizer was also delicious. For macarons go to Pierre Hermé and for delicate pastries go to Lenôtre, both make great on-the-go dessert options.
Where to Explore
I love to end the day with a picnic and a view. Pick up a bottle of wine, some cheese, pastries and a baguette while exploring the city and head to the Jardin des Tuileries or Le Jardin de Luxembourg to watch the sunset.
I just returned from a dreamy trip to Paris, France. Having been a few times before, I wanted to skip all the touristy stops and see the city like a local. Luckily, my old roommate/best friend who has been living in Paris for the past 2 years was able to be my personal tour guide! I am sharing my favorite places to shop, eat and explore below.
The Broken Arm // 12 Rue Perrée, 75003 Paris, France
This cafe and concept store is where I found one of the best lattés in Paris. A lovely place to stop for a coffee break and browse their contemporary boutique.
Merci // Boulevard Beaumarchais, 75003 Paris, France
This concept store has a little bit of everything; books, clothing, furniture, a café and everything in between. The store is beautifully merchandised, making Merci more like an art gallery than just your average boutique.
Le Bon Marché // 24 Rue de Sèvres, 75007 Paris, France
This historic department store features almost every high end designer boutique, but my favorite part is shopping around for little gifts on the lower level. I picked up a pair of shearling gloves and a heart shaped fur pom keychain. Around Fall and Winter you can find tables piled with ear muffs, fur collars and other special accessories. There is also a beautiful hat shop stocked with chic and colorful choices.
La Patisserie des Reves // 111 Rue de Longchamp, 75016 Paris, France
This pink patisserie is a fun little shop filled with mechanical bell jars that move up and down to preserve sweet treats. Amongst my favorites are their round bottles filled with a creamy chocolate drink, and their madeleines.
Angelina // 226 Rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris, France
Try a cup of their famous Le Chocolat chaud l'Africain. It is incredibly rich, and is a must if you are a hot chocolate lover like myself! This was also a favorite gathering place for the likes of Coco Chanel.
Rose Bakery Tea Room // 24 Rue de Sèvres, 75007 Paris, France
Located on the second floor of Le Bon Marché, this little tea room is the perfect retreat for a shopping break. Their desserts are divine, I had a slice of the citron rose cake along with a cup of tea. This bakery also serves a delightful lunch.
Paris Flea Market // 99 Rue des Rosiers, 75018 Paris, France
Absolute antique heaven, I cannot wait to come back to this flea once I can furnish a new home! Vendors upon vendors with furniture and trinkets stacked to the ceilings. My favorite being the two or three jewelry shops filled with vintage Chanel, Schiaparelli, Dior, Christian Lacroix, Miriam Haskell and more. Open only on the weekends, plan on spending a whole day here!
Pierre Hermé // 72 Rue Bonaparte, 75006 Paris, France
By far some of the best macarons I have had. Very interesting flavors and combinations that you will not find at Ladurée.
Lenôtre // 10 Rue Saint-Antoine, 75004 Paris, France
This patisserie also has an amazing selection of macarons, but their pastries and chocolates are on another level. I fell in love with Lenotre so much that I took a bag full of treats home to New York with me. Trying to savor them for as long as possible!