Paris is undoubtably one of our favorite cities in Europe, let alone the world. Whether you are a regular or it is your first time visiting, here are some tips and advice:
The question that usually comes after we book your fabulous business or first class flight, is where to stay? The general vote went to the Westin Vendome http://www.thewestinparis.com/, an outstanding and ravishing Paris institution, very much in style of the city’s extravagant decor. Not only is it situated in the first arrondissement (district), but it is also right in the middle of Paris’s culture, nightlife, shopping and gastronomy.
Now that you found your place to stay, let us guide you on what to do.
The Louvre will get very busy at times. In fact, most people come all the way from the other side of the world just to see the Mona Lisa, Monet’s Waterlilies, Caravaggio, DaVinci, Titian paintings and sculptures from the Baroque and Hellenistic eras, so getting to the Louvre early will help you beat the queues to see one of these majestic pieces of works up close http://www.louvre.fr/en/hours-admission.
What would a trip to the Louvre be without seeing the Mona Lisa? We managed to get a small photo of her amongst the sea of people who crowded around her trying to accomplish the same thing.
Feeling a bit peckish after soaking up all that culture? Head to Angelina, Paris’ iconic “chocolaterie” http://www.angelina-paris.fr/en/ for a quick bite to eat or a touch of sweetness. The delicacies in the pictures will speak louder than words can express!
After Angelina’s, head to the Grand Palais http://www.grandpalais.fr/, the infrastructure alone will leave you speechless with their groundbreaking and innovative contemporary art shows. We were lucky enough to see notorious French designer Jean Paul Gaultier’s show, which was amazing!
Next stop, a bit of mid afternoon retail therapy? Head to the capital of fashion’s staple locations: the Champs Elysee, which also happens to be around the corner from the Grand Palais. There you will be able to browse through fine fabrics, handbags and sparkly jewels at famous French designer’s headquarters such as Louis Vuitton, Cartier or Dior.
**This is the perfect time to purchase any bucket list items from your favorite luxury brands, as the VAT allows for an additional discount, saving you at least several hundreds of dollars.
Within walking distance, is the famous Arc de Triomphe (we definitely recommend going inside to check out their museum and a birds-eye view of ‘new and old’ Paris roof top gardens) http://www.arcdetriompheparis.com/.
Hop on a five minute taxi ride (or Uber, this is 2016 honey!) to the Notre Dame Cathedral where you will be able to participate in their diverse and rich program, ranging from evening exhibits to outside performances http://www.notredamecathedralparis.com/.
What was that? We know, you must be starving by now after all these discoveries. Have no fear! Across the street from the cathedral is a lively street where you will find a variety of cuisines from around the world, from French crepes to Greek Gyro’s. The street closes at midnight so make sure you get there before hand.
Just in time for sunset… You are about a ten minutes walk to the Lock Bridge. A touching and often replicated Parisian landmark, it is there you will see heart-felt messages and hang your own lock in memory of your trip. If you have time, take a ride along the Seine river to sit back as you coast, relax and enjoy the peaceful views surrounding the river banks.
Last stop of the day, you’ve guessed right… the breathtaking Tour Eiffel! Admire the twinkling structure from the bottom, but don’t hesitate to see Paris from above by taking the elevator all the way up to the top. There is also a restaurant on the second floor, but you must book your reservations well in advance in order to eat. The Eiffel Tower is truly a magical way to end the day that will leave you dreaming of stars, ready for your next day in this decadent capital.
Can you do all of this in a day? Probably, but we recommend two, to avoid the pressure of time constraints. Au Revoir! Next stop… Rome.