Parisian Living

The Broken Arm: Paris’ Latest Concept Store & Restaurant in the Marais

by Diane Yoon

The Broken Arm Paris concept store's coffee shop with fresh flowers and a handwritten menu on a small blackboard.

Situated on a quiet, sunny corner in the 3rd arrondissement across from the Square du Temple, The Broken Arm is Paris’s newest concept store-cum-café. It’s already attracting a small crowd of creative types — and the inevitable bobo or twelve — to wile away the the afternoon browsing in its clean, bright retail space or sip excellent coffee and tea in its adjacent coffee shop.

The Broken Arm concept store in Paris, with its window display of fashion items (left) and handwritten coffee shop menu on a blackboard (right).

The Broken Arm was founded by Guillaume Steinmetz, Anaïs Lafarge, and Romain Joste after four years of running the fashion and lifestyle website De Jeunes Gens Modernes together, and the shop carries the brands that the founders had long admired and featured on their online magazine.

Inside Paris fashion concept store The Broken Arm which has a Scandinavian style coffee shop with wooden tables and vintage floor tiles (left) and lots of plants (right).

When asked about the idea behind the brands in the shop, Steinmetz says that there is no singular aesthetic that they are going for; the owners developed a clear idea of the designers they wanted to work with during their time running the magazine and decided to feature them in their retail space. The carefully curated collection includes clothing brands such as Patrik Ervell, Carven, Kenzo, and Gyakusou, as well as lifestyle items such as handmade cutting boards, high-end office supplies, and design books.

An open baguette sandwich with vegetable and cheese toppings (left). French light pink peonies in a vase (right) at Paris concept store The Broken Arm.

The founders recognize that the products they carry aren’t necessarily going to appeal to everyone, but that isn’t really the point. “The most important thing is the mood of the place and how [the customers] feel inside the place,” says Steinmetz. The unpretentious décor reflects this idea — the store is laid out in clean Scandinavian lines flanked by bright white walls and untreated wood shelves that put all the attention on the bright colors of the items on display.

A table and clothes rack of fashion apparel from belts to t-shirts at Paris concept store The Broken Arm in the Marais.

The final effect of all of their efforts is a boutique that feels as if you have stepped into your favorite lifestyle and design blog, a perfect reflection and physical incarnation of the intellectual brand begun four years ago on their website – appropriate for a shop named after a Marcel Duchamp piece that illustrates the blurry line between art and life.

The coffee shop at Paris fashion concept store The Broken Arm, which serves ham boards (left) and coffee and homemade cake (right).

A grilled halloumi sandwich at Paris fashion concept store coffee shop The Broken Arm in the Marais.

The bright and bustling café adjacent to the shop provides a small menu of sandwiches, salads, soups, and planches that are served all day. Everything is made in-house by their chef, trained at Le Bristol, and the menu changes daily with seasonal and simple being the watchwords.

A slice of homemade lemon and poppy seed cake on a white square plate on a table at Paris fashion concept store The Broken Arm's coffee shop in the Marais.

Freshly baked cookies next to a bowl of oranges on the counter of Paris fashion concept store The Broken Arm's coffee shop in the Marais.

When I visited with a girlfriend on a cold but sunny Wednesday afternoon, we sampled a smoked haddock sandwich on ciabatta bread with a Madras curry mayonnaise, which was tasty and surprisingly filling for the smallish size, and a planche of Parma ham and Parmesan cheese which would have benefitted from a bit of arugula or other greens as accompaniment.

Fashion apparel hanging on a rack and a table with neatly laid-out arty books at Paris concept store The Broken Arm in the Marais.

The next week, the menu offered a “club sandwich” with smoked salmon and cream of asparagus spread and a planche of oregano-flecked focaccia with tomatoes, capers, parsley, lard Colonata, and a healthy drizzling of fruity olive oil, dotted with fresh peas.

Three trendy staff members standing in line leaning against the wooden counter at the Paris fashion concept store The Broken Arm in the Marais.

Jars of herbal teas, glasses, plants and cakes on the shelves at Paris fashion concept store The Broken Arm's coffee shop in the Marais.

The Broken Arm Café differs from the recent spate of Aussie-owned coffee shops in Paris by sourcing their beans from the opposite climate — Solberg & Hansen, a coffee supplier and roaster from Norway. The barista, who used to work at SoPi favorite Kooka Boora, is pulling beautiful espresso shots with rich crema and, of course, micro-foamed and swirly art-topped lattes. A selection of homey pastries, including the wonderfully lavender-ombred blueberry cheesecake I sampled, accompanies the impeccable coffee.

A rack of yellow and white cotton garments at Paris concept store The Broken Arm in the Marais.

There’s no doubt that Paris has more than its fair share of concept shops, but The Broken Arm has already begun to carve out its own niche customer base with the creatives in the hip Northern Marais area. Visitors include a good mix of French and expats, and I met a varied group including a shoe designer, a photographer, and a smattering of journalists and writers while working there one afternoon. It is clear that the founders’ goal of creating a welcoming space for like-minded people has succeeded.

The wooden hangers at Paris concept store The Broken Arm, has the store's name carved into them.

A Cappuccino and a slice of blueberry cheesecake on a table at Paris fashion concept store The Broken Arm's coffee shop in the Marais.

The Broken Arm
12 Rue Perrée, 75003
Tel: +33 (0)1 44 61 53 60
Métro: Temple
Open: Mon 2pm – 7pm, Tues – Sat 9am – 7pm

Related links:

  • Unlock Paris checks out Café Pinson, another newly opened café in the 3rd arrondissement
  • Find The Boken Arm on Facebook right here
  • The Guardian lists the top 10 new openings here in Paris and The Broken Arm made the cut

Written by Diane Yoon for the HiP Paris Blog. All photos by Diane Yoon. Looking for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, London, Provence, or Tuscany? Check out Haven in Paris.

Written By

Diane Yoon

Diane Yoon left the city of angels for the city of lights due to circumstance and fell head over heels for Paris like many before her. She spends her days eating, cooking, writing, taking photos, and falling in love for five minutes at a time on the metro. She always has homemade cookie dough in the freezer but is terrible at doing the dishes and doesn't know how to ride a bike. Follow her adventures at her blog, Diane, A Broad. View Diane Yoon's Website

25 comments on “The Broken Arm: Paris’ Latest Concept Store & Restaurant in the Marais

Le plus raffiné des concept store du Marais…Une perle !

A year later and this place is still going strong and definitely one of my favourites. For more of my favourites check out my blog at traveldeliciously.wordpress.com

Jennifer J Grainger

Nice blog, nice life. Look forward to your posts.

LOVE your blog! I have a similar city blog for Amsterdam :-). Citygirls rock!

PARIS BEE kids blog

Oooh a new place to join the Paris coffee wars! Can’t wait to try!!

xoxo PARIS BEE kids blog

This looks like a fabulous place… Can’t wait to visit… xv

Grace of Will She Love Paris

Beautiful pictures and great write-up. Getting really curious about this place xxx

Oh I had no idea about this new place! Seems like an interesting refreshing new place to go to!
Beautiful photos…
I will make sure to go soon!
Thanks for the tip 🙂
hugs
Ylenia

@Milsters: Thanks girl! Whenever I’m in the Marais, I think of you.

@RBJello: I’m sure you’ll love it. 🙂

@Andi: It’s totally cool; it’s got a great vibe for hanging out.

@Felicia: That’s my job; poking people to check out / return to awesome places. Thanks for reading!

I fell in love with the place weeks ago. Thank for you making me pay them yet another visit. Gorgeous photos.

Andi of My Beautiful Adventures

Wow what a cool place!!!!!

Erin / HiP Paris

@RBJello & @Milsters – merci for your kind comments!

Sounds fab!…I will make sure I visit when I’m next in Paris!…xv

http://vickiarcher.com

Wonderful photos and a great post. Going to have to check this store out soon!

Milsters @ Little Pieces of Light

GREAT WRITE-UP!! And it’s just around the corner from my place, so it’s going straight onto my list of places to visit 🙂

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