In collaboration with lack of color
OH Paris, once in the Summer time and once in the Winter time. Both as equally romantic as each other, in very different ways. This is my Winter Guide for Paris, one I spent sitting rugged up in cosy corners of wine bars, indulging in boeuf bourguignon, bread soaked and all - whilst sipping on darling red wine and people watching out of foggy windows.
I'll never forget our first snow encounter, walking through the Vendome… tummies full of red wine & cheese, a mixture of tipsy and jet-lag, as we huddled together, ears cold and noses red. The Vendome, so beautiful and so inviting to the spine chilling wind! We giggled and gasped profusely as we sighted the first flakes of snow floating down from above and onto our limited layering. Our luggage was unfortunately left behind in Abu Dhabi (and most likely sweating in the heat as our fingers and toes froze!). But no sequence of unfortunate events could discourage our enthusiasm. WE were in Paris, together, with our beret’s, and it was snowing, and we were a little dizzy from wine, and the surreality of our surroundings. The AWE!
Oh ps, Paris take me as a citizen? I'd say my attempt at passport photos could be passable.
You’re not in Paris, unless you walk!
My favourite districts to wonder and get lost.
Start off at Tom Greyhound; it's one of my favourite boutiques in Paris, I always leave with a pair of shoes and a present for Nathan. They stock great Korean designers too. Then make your way to L'eclaireur, they have Celine, Balenciaga and all things edgy... and if you're like me and crave a great French lace, make sure you take a peek at Ysé Lingerie. I could really spend days in Le Marais, there's always something I stumble upon that's completely new. It's my favourite place to get lost in, the light always seem to hit the buildings just right, it really is so mesmerising. And, before I forget... you can't leave Le Marais without a French crepe in hand; La Droguerie is the place to go.
SHOP, OLD & NEW
My favourite department & vintage stores.
Le Bon Marche; This is like an art gallery for clothes and beautiful things. My favourite department store, most definitely.
Thank god I'm VIP; A little more on the expensive side of vintage, but it's a well curated store if you can't be bothered going through piles of second hand clothing.
KiloShop; And.. if you can be bothered going through a good vintage hunt, this is the place to go! I picked up some cute lace tops for 5 euro.
The Broken Arm; The start of good shopping in Le Marais... a beautiful concept store with some of my favourite brands; Calvin Klein, Comme Des Garcon. Great for menswear.
Merci | [Le Marais] Second hand book store in the ground floor, with a lifestyle concept store inside and upwards. I love coming here on the first or second day I'm in Paris, it's a little ritual I've developed.
For those who need that little Asian kick in the appetite, after a long day of shopping.
PHO BANH CUON 14 | [13th Arrondissement] Ok, if you're a PHO lover like me, this place is worth the trek & line up. BEST PHO EVER. Heats you from the soul.
WHERE TO STAY
During the Summer we stayed near the Le Marais, but this time round, we were with in a group of 8... so we found the most gorgeous studio AIRBNB in the 8th Arrondissement. It was classically Parieeee.
The Peninsula Paris; I was lucky enough to be able to stay at the beautiful Peninsula for the second time round. It's a little expensive, but if you're keen to splurge, a one nighter is worth the pennies. The sights, the food and service is one of the best by far.
Places to wine and dine, for long hours at a time.
Snow and chill proof.
L'oiseau Blanc [The Peninsula Paris] We took Nikki for a surprise Birthday Lunch at L'oiseau Blanc... which was one of those pinch me moments. Located above the beautiful Peninsula in the 1st Arrondissement. They're usually pretty tight with reservation so make sure you plan ahead. Food is incredible, not to mention the view. Most perfect for girls lunch if you feel like re-enacting a scene out of Sex and The City.
Le Derriere | [3rd Arrondissement] Boozy dinner for big groups of fun. I don't think I ever laughed so much in the one spot, I had one of my best nights in Paris here. Oh, and tequila!
Chez Janou | [Le Marais] There's always a local crowd here, I love coming for their beef bourguignon! I came here for the first time last Summer, and we met the funniest couple where we wined and dined till early hours of the morning - who to this day we still keep in touch with. This time round, I ordered the same beef, and it was just as tasty.
Le Castiglione | [Place Vendôme] OH, this place. The Pumpkin soup, and burrata are my two favourite things. But really, everything on the menu is just mouth watering. I like sitting upstairs, it's so cosy. We got the left corner table, right next to the window, where we watched the most stylish shoppers peruse the street of Saint Honoré.
People watching, the best kind too.
Hôtel Costes | [Place Vendôme] So perfect for brunch or late lunch. I saw some of my favourites (Hi, Jeanne Damas & Natalia Vodianova) in this little gem of a place. Kind of reminds me of Chateau Marmont in LA, but less pretentious, more softly spoken.. and the hosts are chicer. Also, the food is great.
Hemmingway Bar, The Ritz | [Place Vendôme] You can't go to Paris without a visit to the Hemmingway Bar. If you love Midnight in Paris and a romantic like I, you'll be transported through time with just a sip of a cocktail. I like a good Hendricks here.
Cafe Del Flore | [St Germain] A little Paris must, I love coming here after a day of shopping at Le Bon Marche.
OH, the sights!
My favourite way of being tourist.
Lou Lou's | [1st Arrondissment] After a day at Le Louvre, Lou Lou's is the perfect place to wind down and enjoy a view of the Eiffel Tower, if you're after something a little fancy... Make sure you call in for a booking beforehand and try get a seat outside! Nath and I came back for seconds here during the Summer.