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Negotiating à la Française: The Meaning of Non

Learning the different meanings of 'non' in Paris

victorillen

Anyone who has spent a serious amount of time in Paris knows the word well. Non, Monsieur, it is not possible to have green beans instead of fries with your tartare… Non, you can not have a reservation for 20h, we have two seatings: 19h30 or 21h30… Non, I do not take credit cards in my taxi…

Negotiating à la française is something of an art. Here are a few of the nons you may hear on your Parisian adventure, and my best advice for replying:
Learning the different meanings of 'non' in Paris

Guillaume DELEBARRE

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Posted in Parisian Living, Travel | No Comments »

Le Bougainville: Homemade, Grandmother-Style French Cooking

Le Bougainville: Unfussy French Cooking near Place de la Victoire in Paris

I recently found myself strolling near the Place des Victoires, a business district that appeared to have closed for the day. Continuing in the direction of the more promising Galerie Vivienne, my date and I spotted a 1950s-style café with mosaic tile floors, Formica table tops, and primary-color paint. We were dubious, but hungry, so we stepped in, pleased to find that behind Le Bougainville’s near-empty café was a welcoming restaurant with a trove of pleased diners.

Le Bougainville: Unfussy French Cooking near Place de la Victoire in Paris

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 5 Comments »

Paris’ First All Bulk Organic Supermarket Pop-up: BioCoop21

HiP Paris blog. BioCoop 21, Paris' first bag-free organic bulk shop. So many organic, fresh options!

BioCoop, a French organic grocery chain, has opened BioCoop21: Paris’ first all bulk, organic pop-up shop with over 250 options to buy 100% en vrac. The aroma of ripe fruit welcomes customers who come to fill up on groceries at this pocket-sized shop in Paris’ 10ème arrondissement. Small paper bags or durable glass containers can be purchased for one’s dry goods, which include teas, coffees, grains, and legumes.  Ideally, clients will bring their own containers, cloth, and paper bags for their bulk shopping needs.

 

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Posted in Green, Parisian Living | No Comments »

Saint-Sulpice: A Peek Inside One of Paris’ Most Coveted Neighborhoods

HiP Paris blog. Discovering Saint Sulpice. Browsing on Boulevard Saint Germain.
Boulevard Saint-Germain

Saint-Sulpice is one of the poshest quartiers in Paris. With neighbors that include Catherine Deneuve and Scarlett Johansson, it is the regular haunt of celebrities, writers, and intellectuals, making it the cultural capital of the city. The area is named for the nearly 400-year-old church and its soaring bell towers, declaring both the geographical and social center of the arrondissement. A stately square spills from the church steps, lions guarding the central fountain. After school children come to play kick ball, practice tricycle, and engage in all the sports that are forbidden in the nearby Luxembourg Gardens. Gourmands from across the globe fill the green park benches, savoring delicacies from the area’s pâtisseries extraordinaires: Pierre Hermé and Gerard Mulot. In the winter, there is a free merry-go-round for young children on the square, while in the summer the Foire Saint-Germain sets up stalls to celebrate poetry, math, ceramics, and antiques. And there are other festivals around crafts, volunteering, and jazz throughout the year.

HiP Paris blog. Discovering Saint Sulpice. Café de la Mairie.Café de la Mairie

The elegant Mairie, or city hall, dominates one corner of the square, providing a backdrop for neighborhood weddings, while the Café de la Mairie sprawls out from the opposite corner, creating one of the city’s most popular terraces for hours of people watching under dappling shadows of chestnut tree leaves. Continue Reading »

Posted in Arts, Food, Parisian Living, Shopping | No Comments »

Le Bon Saint Pourçain: Back with New Owners and a Traditional-Modern Mix

HiP Paris blog. Le Bon Saint Pourçain. On the corner.

For years, dining at Le Bon Saint Pourçain was like stepping into a time machine set to the 1950s. Neighbors would come, their dogs and children in tow, spending as much time with the owner/waiter catching up on the local gossip as placing their order for a very traditional meal, invariably served with a glass of Bon Saint Pourçain wine. Suddenly, without word, the windows were white-washed over, rumors spread of a health issues (the owner’s, not the kitchen’s) and the neighborhood was left bereft.

HiP Paris blog, Le Bon Saint Pourçain, Eating in the restaurant

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 4 Comments »

An Empty Nester in Paris

French and American Cultural Difference: Empty Nester in Paris

Philippe Leroyer

To pull from Dr. Seuss, “The time has come, the time is now, Marvin K Mooney, please go. Now!”

This fall, the “baby” of our family will be leaving the nest, flying to higher education in the United Kingdom, and the looming adjustment has once again underlined the cultural variety in our lives.

My American friends send me, “awws” with sad faced emoticons, declaring, “Now you’ll be empty nesters.” My Parisian friends raise their glasses in a toast, asking if I’ll now be joining Mr. French on all his business trips so we can enjoy long weekends across the globe.

French and American Cultural Difference: Empty Nester in Paris

Claude Attard

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Posted in Parisian Living | 7 Comments »

The Perfect Weekend Along Paris’ Canal St-Martin

Canal St Martin and Quai de la Seine Paris

Quai de la Seine

Every Sunday the city of Paris inhales deeply, taking a short break to live life at a different rhythm as shops close and entire neighborhoods are labeled pedestrian zones. Museums and monuments become a refuge for art lovers and sight-seeing tourists, while many Parisians head for the greener pastures of local parks.

A weekend along Paris' Canal Saint-Martin, an upcoming neighborhood with markets, boutiques, cafes, and more

A weekend along Paris' Canal Saint-Martin, an upcoming neighborhood with markets, boutiques, cafes, and more

Hôtel du Nord; Le Comptoir Général

The 15th-century canals in Paris’ 19th arrondissement, Canal St-Martin and Canal de l’Ourcq, are great areas to slowly drift into the relaxing weekend beat. Start your day at the Marché de Joinville, where vendors announce prices for perfect picnic pickings. If the day has promised sunshine, rent an electric boat from Marin d’Eau Douce and head north, swans to port and cormorant starboard as you savor your market fare and take in the display of the local street art scene unfolding in this urban countryside.

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Posted in Markets, Parisian Living | 3 Comments »

Inside Frank Gehry’s Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris’ Newest Architectural Sensation

Art Exhibitions, Concerts, and Performances at Paris' Fondation Louis Vuitton

Art and culture are such an integral part of French society that even in English we use the term chef d’oeuvre, and these are the words that swarmed through my thoughts as I visited the Fondation Louis Vuitton last month. Fashion not your thing? It is not the museum’s either. The Fondation was built by LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault to celebrate contemporary art and French crafts, but for now, the most thrilling thing about the building is the building itself.

Art Exhibitions, Concerts, and Performances at Paris' Fondation Louis Vuitton

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Posted in Arts, Design, Events | No Comments »

Sick in Paris? French Medical Assistance 101

When You're Sick in Paris: Practical Advice on Seeking Medical Attention in French Pharmacies, Doctor's Offices, and Hospitals

The day we moved to Paris, I had pneumonia and my eight year-old daughter had a confirmed case of strep throat. Snow fell from the sky, the thermostat plummeted to historic lows, and by Saturday morning my very Californian five year-old was sick too. Their Dad was on a plane, flying home from a business trip in Cologne, and through a feverish haze, I went into panic mode.

When You're Sick in Paris: Practical Advice on Seeking Medical Attention in French Pharmacies, Doctor's Offices, and Hospitals

It was the weekend in a foreign country that had been our home for all of 96 hours. I flew down a flight of stairs and asked our concierge what to do. She kindly introduced me to the pharmacist next door, explaining that the French turn to their pharmacist for basic first aid and medical advice before heading to a doctor.

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Posted in Parisian Living | 6 Comments »

Dating in Paris: How to Hook a Frenchman

How to Date in Paris: What to wear, what to eat, and what to talk about with the Frenchman of your dreams

Katerina Athanasaki

Finding myself a single woman in Paris after 20 years of happily-ever-after came as something of a shock. Having lived decades as a Madame, I was suddenly a Mademoiselle. It took months of deep mourning before I awoke and realized that I was in Paris, it was springtime, and I was free to explore my fantasy of dating a Parisian. He’d lived in my dreams for ages, suave with an intellectual flair. He definitely wore glasses and a scarf, his unruly brown hair would be lightly greased back. Miraculously, he’d be 100% nicotine-free. He’d occasionally trip over uneven cobblestone as he geeked out, contemplating an important question regarding Nietzsche, Hegel, or Sartre.

How to Date in Paris: What to wear, what to eat, and what to talk about with the Frenchman of your dreams

PhOtOnQuAnTiQuE

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Posted in Parisian Living | 4 Comments »