Parisian Living

Be My Parisian Valentine: Three Romantic Itineraries in the City of Light

by Lily Heise
HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day - Flickr-Pocketrockets georgemoga Pocketrockets; Georgemoga

Be My Perfect Valentine

Paris is definitely one of the most romantic cities in the world. But with so much to do in the City of Love, it can be hard to choose how to celebrate the ultimate day of amour: Valentine’s Day. Here are some thematic original ideas to inspire your plans for February 14th, or any special Paris date night!

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Flickr, philippe leroyer 4Philippe Leroyer

1920s Glamour

Start your night by slipping on your flapper-girl dress and slinking to the new Club Rayé piano bar (26 rue Dussoubs, 75002). Opened in December in a former 13th century nunnery, owner (and New Yorker) Kein Cross applied his interior design experience to create a one of a kind venue. Black and white stripes (rayé in French) are ever-present in the décor, from the comfy lounge chairs to the custom-made rayé accessories. Ideal for a before-or-after-dinner drink, sit back and enjoy the live piano music, inventive champagne cocktails and savory arancini balls.

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Le Boeuf Sur le ToitLe Boeuf Sur le Toit

Your evening should continue in kind, so make your way to the majestic art deco restaurant Le Boeuf sur le Toit (34 rue du Colisée, 75008). First opened at a different location in 1921, it became the after-hours hotspot of the Jazz era attracting the likes of Picasso, Jean Cocteau, Erik Satie and Coco Chanel. While this incarnation dates from 1941, it impeccably embodies Les Années Folles.

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Tres HonoreLe Tres Honore

Craving one more drink? Cozy in at Le Très Honoré (35 place du Marché Saint-Honoré, 75001) with its 1920s boudoir-style bar, plush sofas and seductively named cocktails such as “Bisou Bisou,” it’s the perfect late night lovers’ retreat. Read more about it here by fellow HiP Paris contributor and cocktail expert Forest Collins.

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Flickr, manuelsvayManuel Svay

Modern Hemingway Heartthrobs

Paris has been a mecca for writers for over a century and there are still plenty of places in the city that preserve this literary tradition. Rendez-vous with your chéri/e at one of the Latin Quarter’s independent bookshops, either Shakespeare and Company (37 Rue de la Bûcherie, 75005) or the Abbey Bookshop (29 Rue de la Parcheminerie, 75005), and make a challenge to seek out the most romantic book as a V-Day present for your amour.

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Flickr, Pug Girl 2Pug Girl

Pursue your amorous adventure at one of the area’s literary themed cafés for a drink or dinner. Surrounded by books and with the skies painted above on the ceiling, you’ll be in your own writers’ paradis at the former bookshop La Fourmi Ailée (8, rue du Fouarre, 75005). Or for a posher place, settle in amongst current intellects and publishers at equally book-lined Les Editeurs (4 Carrefour de l’Odéon, 75006).

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Flickr, japeyeJapeye

Finally, stop in at Le Café Laurent (33 Rue Dauphine, 75006), the literary cafe of the hotel d’Aubusson. One of the oldest cafés in all of Paris, it was a favorite meeting place of French intellectual and literary world from Voltaire and Rousseau to Camus and Sartre. Boris Vian jammed here, and this musical custom still lives on with nightly jazz concerts Wednesday to Saturday.

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Shakespeare & Co Flickr Filip_is_untitled and Le-RosieShakespeare & Co (Filip_is_untitled); Le Rosie

Hipster Heaven

Romantic Hipsters need not despair. You may have to pretend it’s not really Valentine’s Day, because it isn’t cool to officially celebrate it in France. However, you can have a discreetly heavenly night in the brewing Hipster hotspot north of Barbès.

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Flickr Phil Beard and Maria A.-CPhil Beard; Marie A.C.

The intersection of rue Muller and Clignancourt is hopping on the weekend. Start with a cheap pint at either La Chope du Chateau (40 Rue de Clignancourt, 75018) or Clair de Lune Bar (1 rue Ramey, 75018), packed with a mix of young and old locals.

PARIS 18Clair de Lune

Next, work your way up to Le Rosie (3 rue Muller, 75018), the living-room-style bar of Nicolas Ullmann, the rebel king of Parisian nightlife. Have some cheese and charcuterie plates, or if you need to satisfy a larger appetite head a little further up the road to nibble on an Aphrodite at the Pink Flamingo Pizza (30 Rue Muller, 75018).

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Flickr, serene movement 14 copy

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Flickr, serene movement 7Serene Movement

Finish your night off at Le Blue (14 rue Muller, 75018), the recently reopened and revamped venue of the legendary Blue Note jazz club. Cool DJs have replaced the jazz musicians, but it’s still cheap and in keeping with the artsy crowd of this new generation.

HiP Paris Lily Heise Valentine's Day Flickr, createur de souvenirsDavid Cruchon

Do you have fun date ideas to share? We’d love to hear them in the comments!

Written by Lily Heise, author of Je T’aime, Me Neither, for the HiP Paris Blog. Looking for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, London, Provence, or Tuscany? Check out Haven in Paris.

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Written By

Lily Heise

Lily Heise has been living in Paris for more than 10 years. When she's not getting into romantic mischief, she writes on dating, travel, and culture. Her writing has been featured in Frommer’s Guides, the Huffington Post, Conde Nast Traveler, City Secrets, DK Eyewitness Guides, and other local and international publications. She is the author of Je T'Aime, Me Neither, and Je T'Aime... Maybe? lively novelized memoirs on her romantic misadventures, and continues to share dating tips, stories and travel features on her blog www.jetaimemeneither.com. View Website

5 comments on “Be My Parisian Valentine: Three Romantic Itineraries in the City of Light

Glad you liked the post Lucien and Alexandra, and it’s nice to see Paris love spreading across all the way to Vancouver!

Lucien, I’m not totally sure, but it looks like that could be on a statue on the Pont Alexandre III bridge?

I couldn’t make it back to Paris this month, but I succeeded in bringing a bit of Paris to Vancouver.

http://www.alexandraswistak.com/2014/02/16/red-and-marigold-macarons/

http://www.alexandraswistak.com/2014/02/14/happy-valentines-day/

Happy Valentine’s Day weekend!

Cool article 🙂

Do you know where the last photo, the one with “I love you”, has been taken?

Thank you,
Lucien

Hi Lucien… I am not sure. Anyone know?! – Erica

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