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à Paris

Here’s a little list of places I’ve discovered in Paris that make my day a little brighter. If you’re ever in the City of Lights, you should check them out.

Restaurants

Crêperie Suzette

24, Rue des Francs-Bourgeois
75003 Paris
01 42 72 46 16

This is a little hole-in-the-wall restaurant in the Marais, one of the oldest quartiers in Paris and definitely one of the most colorful. The restaurant serves crêpes with interesting, home-cooked ingredients and isn’t too expensive (around 9 euros for a crêpe salé last I checked).

Victoria Station Wagon Restaurant

11 Bd. Montmartre
Paris 75002
01 42 36 73 90

This is one of the best pizza places I’ve visited in Paris. The whole inside looks and feels like an old train car, including faded velvet seats and old-fashioned lamps. If you’re seated in the right section of the restaurant, you can actually watch your pizza being prepared, and then they cook it over a wood-burning stove. This place also happens to have excellent ice cream desserts (including one that has coffee ice cream).

Royal Bangkok

4, rue du Cher
75050 Paris

This one I discovered thanks to Harriet Welty-Rochefort and Philippe Rochefort. It’s a Thai-style restaurant with excellent cuisine (I had beef cooked in a basil sauce and fresh mango. I highly recommend both). If you’re looking for something a little exotic, this is an excellent option.

For American food

Épicerie Anglaise & Américain

5, cité Wauxhall
75010 Paris
01 42 00 36 20

This is more or less a grocery store for all the little things you’ve left behind in America. I came last for peanut butter M&Ms but have also gotten ingredients for making a chocolate cheesecake as well as Dr. Pepper and Ginger Beer (which is really a soda). The owner was also able to provide me with advice about how to substitute ingredients that weren’t available. For a full listing of their stock, check out their Web site.

To Cut Hair: Tchip

113, rue de Courcelles
01 47 63 81 14

This place is extremely cheap when it comes to getting a haircut (18 euros for a shampoo, cut and brush), and besides that you can come without an appointment. I had my hair cut here last year and came back with a cute bob and much more money in my pocket than I had expected (before this I had paid as much as 42 euros for a cut). For more info, you can check out my article about how to get a haircut in Paris.

For a good book

The Abbey Bookshop

29, rue de la Parcheminerie
75005 Paris

The Abbey BookshopThis bookshop is not for the faint of heart. There are books on literally every space including the the floors and desks. If you come in, plan for an hour or two because it can take time to find specific books, especially if they are not fiction books. The owner, Brian Spence, can order nearly any book that might not be immediately available. He also leads a Canada Club and often holds events at the shop. For more information, check out their Web site.

For a free summertime outing

Cinéma en plein air (“outdoor cinema”)

Métro: Porte de Pantin

Last year's Cinéma en Plein Air poster.

Last year's Cinéma en Plein Air poster.

This is an excellent way to pass a warm, dry evening in Paris. It’s their equivalent to a drive-in movie theater without the driving. Bring at least two blankets (one for the ground, and one for you), picnic food, a soccer ball or good book and friends.

The Ciné en plein air is free, though in 2008 they experimented with charging one euro for each evening and fenced off the grass. Thankfully, this year they’ve gone back to making the event free (although if you want a low-back lawn chair or blanket, it will cost you 6.50 euros (or you can get a card for five rentals at 20 euros).

To see a blog about my experiences, click here.

To check on whether the movie will be rained out, you can go to

www.villette.com

or call 01 40 03 76 92


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