QUI N’AIME PAS PARIS? THE CULTURE. THE FOOD. THE MUSIC. THE FOOD. THE FASHION. THE ART.
WHERE TO STAY
Although it would be nice shack up in a suite at the Georges V, it’s not so necessary as I’m sure, like me, you will be spending most of your time exploring the city. The best place for young travelers on a budget to lay their heads is the Mije hostel. There are three townhouses located in the Marais district just minutes from Notre Dame, each housing young travelers looking to explore and connect. The stellar location is the main selling point of this hostel however compared to many others, the accommodations are plush and comfortable. Single rooms start at 49.00 Euros a night and for 30.00 Euros can share a group room. Breakfast is included so you can fuel up before you hit the streets.
WHERE TO GO
Just outside the city, a scenic train ride and a quick jaunt on a bus, is the city of Poissy. Here lies probably one of the most important pieces of architecture in the world, Villa Savoye. Completed in 1929, and way ahead of it’s time, it’s the masterpiece of Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier. The villa was originally designed as a weekend house, and the ultra contemporary design and structure is like any other from that era. As you walk through the house, the design elements are staggeringly avant-garde now let alone if you imagine yourself in the late-twenties when the house was built. This a great place to get out of the city for a half-day adventure and you can even bring a baguette and some cheese and lunch on the lawn and marvel at the architectural ingenuity.
82 Rue de Villiers, 78300 Poissy, France – 01 39 65 01 06
WHERE TO SHOP
You should know this about me now as this recommendation is a biased one. Maison Martin Margiela is one of my favorite design houses. Everything from their clothing, shoes, bags and store decor is minimal yet avant garde and completely inspiring. The men’s store is pretty hard to find unless you have knowledge of the streets but once you find this holy place, for me at least, then you will realize why is was worth the search. Of course the prices are high but it’s less about buying and more about experiencing. If you appreciate high design then you will like what you see.
23 Rue de Montpensier, 75001 Paris, France -01 40 15 06 44
Also, don’t miss the famous Goyard store and Parisian favorites, Givenchy & Christian Louboutin.
WHERE TO LET GO
Tucked away in the Montorgueil District, lays Le Pinup; a Paris meets Berlin hot spot where every Hip Traveler must make an appearance. The space is tiny, even for Parisian standards but makes up for the lack of elbow room with it’s sexy retro accents among white washed brick walls and vaulted ceilings. Not to mention the handsome mixologists to satiate your boozy desires. Wander downstairs and you will find a bar in a starck white cellar with projection screens and a DJ spinning the latest in electronic and house music. Although it get very warm in the windowless cellar, it’s worth the experience. Chill back and groove to the beats while drinking your specialty champagne cocktail.
13 Rue Tiquetonne
75002 Paris, France
01 42 33 04 86
WHAT TO EXPERIENCE
Versailles is undeniable. It is opulent, gratuitously expansive and an eclectic history explosion. It is a very simple train ride from Paris and a short walk from the station once you arrive in the small town. You can buy a ticket and tour the palace and grounds, rent a golf cart, grab a bottle of wine and lay near the lake or even bring a bike. If you make it during on off season weekday you will be able to enjoy it at it’s best. The grounds are massive and can an entire day to navigate in it’s entirety but not to worry, the garden cafe serves a delicious burger and cold draft beer. A must on a hot day at Versailles, I’m sure Marie Antoinette did the same thing..
Make sure to visit Palais du Tokyo to pick up the latest magazines and books in art fashion and international culture. You might even see local skaters show off their ollies in the plaza.
WHERE TO PEOPLE WATCH
My good friend Karl Lagerfield (I wish) makes his daily espresso stop at iconic hangout, Cafe De Flore. Last time I stopped by this local St. Germaine favorite I brought my book and barely got through a chapter because my eyes darted person to person as they strolled by or waited for a patio table. Even though it tends to draw floods of tourists, especially during the summer, it makes for a great spot to relax and enjoy cappuccino before heading to the Bon Marche. The Croque Madame is killer if you need a mid-afternoon indulgence. Let your feet rest and absorb the Parisian air, this is the place to do it.
172 Boulevard Saint-Germain, 75006 Paris, France – 01 45 48 55 26
HOW TO CHILL
Get a bottle of your favorite french red at a passing wine shop and lay on the grass beside the Eiffel Tower. This always makes for an amazing moment.
THE HIP TIPS
- A trip to Paris is not complete without experiencing the arts. That can be the Louve or Louboutin.
- When in doubt, where black. French Fashion 101.
- Don’t assume the waiters see you. Make sure to politely let your server know when you are ready to order… or you may be waiting for a while.
- To save some money- just snack on baguette all day!
- You are in France. If you speak French, speak it. If you don’t, download your translator app and start practicing!