The delights in Paris are seemingly never ending. As I was just talking to a friend of mine recently about what makes travel extraordinary, for me, it comes down to knowing I will be able to eat and sleep well. When these two fundamentals are tended to, then everything else I have dreamed of experiencing can be more fully experienced.
Each time I have the opportunity to return to France, whatever I find that I want to recommend to TSLL readers to hopefully help you tailor your trip to your specific tastes and interests, I share in TSLL’s Travel Guides which is complete with a Google Map as well. You will find Paris, Normandy, the Loire Valley and Provence for recommendations found throughout the country.
So today, I am adding to my recommendations for Paris with nine must-visit, must-dine, must-nibble and must-sleep. Have a look below and may your next trip to the City of Light exceed your expectations!
To Explore & Shop
Shakespeare & Company, 5th arr.
Let’s start off with a beloved treasure for book lovers. Shakespeare & Co is located in the 5th arrondissement along the river Seine and just steps away from the Notre-Dame Cathedral. Set beside it is now is the Shakespeare & Co. Cafe.
I appreciate their strict policy of not allowing photography in the shop as you wouldn’t have enough room to wandering about with photogs as well as those perusing for books. It is a tiny space, but absolutely wonderful and worth visiting. Situated just beside the bookshop is a petite jardin that I enjoyed my morning croissant in whilst saying hello to Notre-Dame (pics at the end of this post).
E. Dehillerin, 1st arr.
Cooks, foodies, wannabe-anything-regarding-food, this is your mecca. In fact, this area in Paris on the right bank used to be known as the cook’s/chef’s quarter, and there are still more than a handful of foodie destinations (shops rather than restaurants – although they are there as well – for supplies, books, etc.). A. Simon is also down the street and around the corner which is a worthwhile place to visit for kitchen tools and supplies.
E. Dehillerin holds a special place in the hearts of those who adore Julia Child, as she purchased many of her items for her batterie de cuisine from the shop in the late forties and fifties when she first lived in Paris and attending Le Cordon Bleu. Of course, there are other reasons hold a special place in their heart for this iconic destination, so perhaps my bias is being worn on my sleeve. 😉
I bopped into the shop a couple of times this trip to pick up a few small tools I realized I needed as well as one copper item which will debut in this new season of The Simply Luxurious Kitchen. Last year as well, I stopped in for the first time and took a few videos of the shop. View episode #5 in Season 1 of The Simply Luxurious Kitchen to see a tour of E. Dehillerin (as well as A. Simon) beginning at 13:07 of the video.
Brasserie Bellanger, 10th arr.
I happened upon Brasserie Bellanger on my walk back from Les Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen. Situated on a quiet street in the 10th, the olive green exterior color grabs your attention as it contrasts with the Parisian buildings awash in beige stone. Placed on the corner, having a terrasse with multiple French doors open (as seen in the images below), I had a most delicious meal with excellent, helpful service. While I attempted my French, the head waiter made sure I was comfortable and spoke in English. It was very evident the staff was there to accommodate an international clientele, and as I was leaving, the waiters made sure to wish me a good day.
Huguette Bistro de la Mer, 6th arr.
The first night upon arriving into Paris this year, I discovered Huguette and oh, what a scrumptious meal I enjoyed. Recommended by the hotel I was staying at in the 5th (see below for To Stay recommendations), the service was lovely and having a table on the terrasse a treat. However, this bistro is a local’s favorite, as I shared in my original Instagram post, so it is best to make a reservation in order to choose where you want to sit and be sure you indeed do get a table.
Located on the busy Saint Germain Boulevard, just a few blocks away from Café Flore and Café Deux Magots, Lou Lou’s is truly a friendly dinner as their IG handle suggests. Petite in size, but grand in hospitality, the food is scrumptious and prices quite nice as well.
Hotel Monge, 5th arr.
During my trip to France this year, I book-ended my stay with two nights in Paris upon arrival and two nights in Paris prior to departure. Wanting to explore different boutique hotels that were less expensive than last year’s experience (although absolutely lovely, and truly luxurious), I found one hotel on the left bank to be close to a handful of sights I wished to see, and that hotel was Hotel Monge.
Located just one block away from Les Jardins des Plantes and a handful of blocks away from the 2018 winning Boulangerie of the best croissant in Paris (shared at the end of this post), then just two blocks more before you are standing in front of Shakespeare & Co., the location was ideal. I was pleasantly impressed with how quiet the street was and was awakened by birds each morning as my French window was open to let the soft Parisian breeze into the room.
The price is mid-range, and for the service, the location and the quality of room amenities – a beautiful rain shower with a French window in the bathroom as well as the bedroom – even though the room is small, the price is fair. Smartly designed, sleep was sweet and I felt very welcomed at at home.
Adèle & Jules Hotel, 9th arr.
For my last two days in Paris and for my entire trip in France, I made reservations at Adèle & Jules which is tucked away amongst other hotels and residential apartments. As you can see, the classic Parisian balcony was part of my room (but be sure to request a room with this feature, as not all rooms have them), and I did enjoy sitting out there in the late afternoons as I let my feet and mind relax.
The service was impeccable, and the lounge offered a happy hour with tea and sweets, as well as other meal items. As I wanted to be on the right bank to be closer to The French Bastards bakery and most importantly, Les Marché aux Puces, being on the right-side in order to head to the airport also made the Uber ride a bit cheaper.
To Nibble on Croissants and other Pastries
The French Bastards, 11th arr.
The French Bastards was quickly put on my list of patisseries to visit after I learned from David Lebovitz’s IG account that they were open in the 11th. Newly opened in fact, this corner lot patisserie offers sweets inspired by both France and America, and as you can see in the photos, they do not mess around with small sizes.
Delicious, and oh how I wish I could have purchased one of everything and devoured it as well, but there will be a next time, and I cannot wait to return. The only day they are closed is jeudi (Thursday), and they serve sandwiches and lunch nibbles as well.
La Maison d’Isabelle, 5th arr.
Every year Parisian boulangeries compete to see who has the best baguette, who as the best croissant and many other delicious French treats. And so it was that in 2018, La Maison d’Isabelle one first prize for the best croissant in Paris. Making sure to visit, I stopped in each morning I was staying on the left bank and picked up one of their croissants for one Euro (yep, you read that right – wow!), and my tastebuds were very happy that I did. As I have captured below, there are multiple layers, crispy, but not too crispy and oh so wonderful and butty on the inside. The size is standard and not the large versions we see in the United States often, which I greatly appreciated.
If you happen to be in this part of Paris, it is worth stopping into and don’t be afraid to stop in early as they open at 6 am. Learn more about this prestige and business-changing honor in this post by Paris Insider.
TSLL’s 4th Annual French Week posts thus far . . .
SUNDAY August 11th
- Welcome to TSLL’s 4th Annual French Week!
- 7 French Candles I Love & A Giveaway! – giveaway
- Visiting Musée d’Orsay and Impressionist Berthe Morisot’s Exhibit
MONDAY August 12th
- NEW podcast episode – #257: An American Being Everyday French – My Interview with author & writer John von Sothen
- The World, Large & Small, Illustrated for Your Home, Kitchen and Life: A Modvin Paris Illustrated Giveaway – giveaway
- 5 New-in-2019 French Lifestyle Books I Have Enjoyed
TUESDAY August 13th
- Q & A with Heidi Wynne on Scarves, Effortless Style and Classic Films
- 11 Helpful Tips for Visiting and Shopping at Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen in Paris
- A Simple Everyday Luxury: A Gien Mug, giveaway, — giveaway
WEDNESDAY August 14th