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Market Shopping: Marché des Enfants Rouges

Marché des Enfants RougesMeg Zimbeck

If you enjoy the Marais and are a history buff or a market troll, you must take the time to discover the oldest market in Paris : le Marché des Enfants Rouges.

First off, a little history to get everyone situated. Marguerite de Navarre, sister of King François the 1st and mother of King Henri the 4th (who was the one to end the religious wars that had been bloodying France), was a very well educated, politically engaged and charitable member of the royal family. In 1534 she had an orphanage constructed in what is now the Marais whose little pensioners were dressed in red as a symbol of their status. The orphanage was closed in the beginning of the 17th century and in 1615 was transformed into a market dubbed the Marché des Enfants Rouges (market of red children) to commemorate the charitable establishment that had occupied the site for almost a century.

Marché des Enfants RougesMeg Zimbeck

It remains a market today and has been on the list of national historical monuments since 1982. Today, neighborhood locals still congregate to shop for produce and fresh products, to have a coffee and to converse with other locals, old-timers and merchants. Continue Reading »

Posted in Food, Shopping | 12 Comments »

Private Shopping with Miki on the Rue St. Honoré

Melissa Ladd, author of blog Prete Moi Paris, recently stumbled upon every woman’s dream: a private shopping lounge, reserved just for you and your friends, stocked with all the gorgeous designer items you can imagine. Fantasy? Think again!

Miki All photos courtesy of Miki

I don’t ever want to shop in a store again. I don’t want to do the queue for the dressing rooms, I don’t want to deal with pushy people grabbing the last black silk blazer in my size from my ecstatic fingers, and I am done with finding the perfect item after hours of searching only to discover the collar smeared with lipstick. Enough! Terminé! Finito!

And although I also love the comfort of browsing from home, online shopping is not conducive to the immediate gratification we crave — I have sent jeans back to Yoox three times in a row before finding the perfect fit. Personal shoppers are fabulous, but it can be tough to part with their fees when that cash could be put towards actual clothes…

casa-3

What if I told you I know of a place that combines the best of these shopping worlds, brought to you by an Italian woman no less ?

Continue Reading »

Posted in Parisian Living, Shopping | 2 Comments »

59 Rivoli: A Modern Day Artist Squat in the Heart of Paris

While Paris is one of the best cities in the world to stroll through museums and gallery-hop, Melissa Ladd — friend and author of the wonderful blog Prete Moi Paris — has unearthed one of the more raw and authentic ways to discover the Right Bank’s true emerging artistic talent. Here she shares with us the return of the artist squat, right on the rue de Rivoli!

59Rivoli_b4

There’s ‘artsy-fartsy’, and then there’s what we call in French Bobo, meaning bourgeois-bohême… Meaning, well, ‘artsy-fartsy’! And then, there are actual real artists who don’t always come from affluent families that can afford to pay for a studio in Montmartre where they can pretend to philosophize on contemporary works that are too main-stream and “don’t dig into the real meaning of life”. The real artists are niched in little pockets of society, and they band together in hopes of surviving and being able to create their art.

You’ll find one such pocket at 59 rue de Rivoli, where an entire building has finally been given by the city of Paris to a band of bohemians.

9Rivoli_stair

Continue Reading »

Posted in Arts, Events | 5 Comments »