September 3, 2015
When I moved to Paris six years ago, one of the greatest things that happened to me was meeting Melissa Unger. A fellow New Yorker, Melissa also had French blood and California cool. She was gregarious, generous, genuine, and a little bit wild. She had confidence and grace in equal measure, and very clear convictions along with the ability to articulate them. As our friendship developed over the years, I was witness—more recently, from 3000 miles away, back in New York—to her mining her beliefs to create something pretty amazing, especially for Paris, where the cynics run free.
It started in 2011, when Melissa launched Seymour Projects, a not-for-profit organization committed to helping individuals cultivate self-expression by encouraging them to balance technological stimuli with internal exploration. As of January of this year, it evolved into a physical space called SEYMOUR+. Making good on its founding philosophy, SEYMOUR+ gives the general public a physical place to disconnect from technology and other external distractions in order to reconnect with their imagination and intuition—a spa for the mind, if you will. It’s a concept that is wholly unique and yet totally natural. Here, Melissa shares her journey to opening the most innovative space in Paris.
September 1, 2015
Paris Techno Parade, looking4poetry
It’s that time of year again, when hazy summer days are behind us and locals have returned from their vacances d’été. La rentrée brings city-wide sales and anticipated new restaurant openings, but also various events worth checking out. Here are some favorites:
Sadar Bahad,opening DJ for BOTTLE, Rene Passet
August 25, 2015
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.
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.
August 11, 2015
What is it about Paris that incites such strong feelings? With the exception of New York, no other city seems to have such an affect on people. Sharing the fact that I live in Paris tends to invite strong opinions, ranging from those who have spent a considerable amount of time in France’s capital to those who have never set foot on French soil, offering their impression on what Paris is, or specifically what the French are like.
August 7, 2015
Parisians seem to have perfected the art of enjoying summer. The long days keep them basking in the sunshine in the city’s many bucolic gardens or on one of its ever-growing number of hip terraces and rooftop bars, not to mention the abundance of festivals which quickly fill up agendas. If you’re looking to enjoy the season with your amoureux in alternative ways and away from the crowds, try out one of these three romantic itineraries.
August 4, 2015
August in Paris gets a bad rap amongst the visiting community. The city is dead, your favorite places are closed… but this norm is starting to change, with many more restaurants remaining open for parts of the month. And there’s no shortage of enticing events, proving August in Paris can be fabulous too (and hey, who doesn’t love a slightly less crowded city?)
So, about those restaurants keeping their doors open and “fermeture pour congés d’été” signs down. Paris by Mouth has graciously done the legwork for us and rounded up where to snag a table this month. Peek at this list before heading out for a weekday lunch or weekend apéro.
July 30, 2015
Is there anything more Parisian than lunch or drinks on a terrasse? The warmth of the sun offset by the breeze on your face, the tables spilling out onto the sidewalk… It’s a perfect place to people-watch. But sometimes it’s nice to feel more secluded without having to move inside; that’s where the courtyard terrasse come in. Set just enough off the street to feel like you’re in a private space, it’s the perfect place for a summer apéro as the surrounding buildings create a cool oasis from the heat of the Parisian streets.
The Marais’ newest pop-up, Café Cour, offers exactly that. Opened the first of June and tucked away off of rue des Francs-Bourgeois in the heart of the neighborhood, the terrace offers half-sunlit, half-shaded seating up until around 17h, when the sun sinks just low enough to be hidden. There’s interior seating too, if you’re looking for a place to set up your computer and get some work done in a peaceful environment.
July 28, 2015
It’s no secret that we’re big fans of Le Fooding. Their annual guide is a go-to for gourmets and their events, always featuring fare from top chefs of the moment, are not to be missed. We sat down with Victoire Louapre, Media Manager at Le Fooding and one of the friendliest Parisiennes I’ve had the pleasure of chatting with, to talk shop. -Erin
First off, let’s hear a bit about Le Fooding. How and why was it created?
Le Fooding was created 15 years ago by Alexandre Cammas, who was a freelancer and food critic at the time. There was a need to create a guide that was different from the more classic ones, a guide that would span the noble Relais & Châteaux addresses to mind-blowing street stall kebabs.
And now you! How did you get involved with Le Fooding? What attracted you to the company and what is your role exactly?
After working in the perfume industry for a couple of years, I got bored with major companies and their implied hierarchy. I sent an email to someone at Le Fooding, telling them how much I loved the guide and that I was up for anything. I met with Alexandre one morning, and it clicked immediately. I started as a Biz Dev intern and ended up Media Manager. Today, I take care of all the press relations, social media, the legal disputes… Every day is different, there’s always something new to learn, and we never get bored!
June 30, 2015
I have never been great in the kitchen. My family is filled with wonderful cooks and bakers, but it has always been clear that I did not inherit that gene. My father owned a restaurant and has always encouraged me to be an adventurous eater. My mother is well known for her cakes and decadent buttercream frosting. My brother collected TV infomercial kitchen appliances and loved experimenting with them. Does any one remember the Perfect Pancake Pan or the Fasta Pasta Microwave pasta cooker? Those were some of his favorites. Growing up, while they were concocting delicious meals in the kitchen, I was reading a book.
June 25, 2015
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.