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Getting Paris Right the First Time

We've asked journalist, podcaster, and Paris dweller Oliver Gee to share his advice on how to pull of the perfect first trip to Paris.Grant Lemons

Editor’s Note: Memories of a first trip to Paris never fade. The indelible experience of discovering one of the world’s most beautiful cities unfailingly leaves its mark. No matter what you do, once you’ve seen Paris it will never leave you. Having said that, there are ways to approach your first time to Paris that will assure you get the most out of the experience and guarantee a maximum of memories you’ll hold dear for years after your first steps on Paris’ cobblestone streets. We’ve asked journalist, podcaster, and Paris dweller Oliver Gee to share his advice on how to pull off the perfect first trip to Paris. Happy reading.

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Posted in Parisian Living, Travel | No Comments »

DonAntónia Pastelaria: Portuguese Treats Along the Canal St-Martin

HiP Paris Blog DonAntonia Pastelaria Canal St MartinAmong all of the trendy coffee shops and boutiques along the Canal Saint Martin, one new address is standing out from the rest. Forget croissants and café crèmes for a moment and immerse yourself in the pasteis de nata and galão at DonAntónia, a part eatery, part grocery store that is dedicated to the tastes of Portugal.

HiP Paris Blog DonAntonia Pastelaria Canal St MartinThe idea is simple: everything – down to the milk in the coffee – comes from Portugal. A team at Canelas bakery in Pierrefitte, just north of Paris, creates the pastries each day. In fact, they’ve been catering Portuguese cuisine for 35 years, but DonAntónia is the first storefront for the products in Paris. Continue Reading »

Posted in Coffee, Food, Restaurant Reviews | 2 Comments »

Myrthe: A Quality Cantine and 100% French Épicerie Along Paris’ Canal St-Martin

HiP Paris blog. Myrthe, a locally sourced epicerie and cantine off of the Canal Saint Martin. Street view of the colorful cantine.

Long-time friends Marion and Laura couldn’t have found a better spot for Myrthe, the half-cantine, half-épicerie they opened in December 2014. Sandwiched between specialty coffee shop Ten Belles and lush florist Bleuet Coquelicot, Myrthe is one of the Canal St-Martin’s newest tenants. And it’s a great fit for the area. In addition to serving sandwiches, salads, and gluten-free pastries on-site, Myrthe offers a selection of take-away apéro baskets that demand to be eaten canal-side. “The hardest part about opening a business in Paris is finding the right spot. We got really lucky with this one,” says Marion.

HiP Paris blog. Myrthe, a locally sourced epicerie and cantine off of the Canal Saint Martin. Grab a coffee, settle in and stay awhile.

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 2 Comments »

Endless Summer at CopperBay Cocktail Bar in Paris’ 10ème

HiP Paris blog. Endless summer at Copper Bay Cocktail Bar in the 10th arrondissement. Open, airy, and light-filled space.

With the la rentrée in full steam ahead in Paris, summer has seemingly slipped away over the course of a weekend. The once quiet streets that called for leisurely strolls seem almost forgotten as halcyon days gone by and are once again packed with cars and locals all participating in the city hustle.

HiP Paris blog. Endless summer at Copper Bay Cocktail Bar in the 10th arrondissement. Pastis and fresh ingredients are reminiscent of warm days in southern France.

What comes with getting back to the daily grind is the re-opening of favorite restaurants, boulangeries, and bars that were also enjoying the stillness of summer, adding a spark to the sudden shift in energy. One bar that will let us hold onto our summer memories is CopperBay, where the ease of the sunny South of France has been brought up to the City of Light.

HiP Paris blog. Endless summer at Copper Bay Cocktail Bar in the 10th arrondissement.

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Ambrym: Sustainable Made-in-France Fashion on the Canal St-Martin

HiP Paris blog. Ambrym. Store location on Rue des Vinaigriers.

Gabrielle Gerard and Marion Jaubert, fashion school friends turned business partners, are the dynamic women behind Ambrym, a French label dedicated to sustainable and locally made fashion. Together they have created a line of clothing, and a shop in the 10th arrondissement, that resembles their unique stories as well as their shared history.

Their shop, next to the Canal St-Martin, looks exactly like what you’d imagine a space shared by two creative ladies would, sketches and paintings that inspire their designs are hung on the walls, while jewelry and clothing are lovingly presented. It’s immediately clear that this friendly and welcoming space was created by two amies. While the project is a collaboration, Gabrielle’s childhood and background heavily influence the collections.

HiP Paris blog. Ambrym. Designer Gabrielle's artwork. Continue Reading »

Posted in Arts, Fashion, Green, Shopping | No Comments »

Cartel: Japanese Tapas Along Paris’ Canal St-Martin

Cartel: Japanese Tapas Along Paris' Canal Saint-Martin

With the mercury punching above 100, Paris’ terraces are mercilessly packed with sun-seekers from dawn till long after dusk. But this great little place that just opened along the Canal Saint Martin still has a few spots left for the taking, although not for long.

A cross between a South Floridian speakeasy and a cool contemporary Tokyo eatery, Cartel isn’t to be confused with the neighborhood’s fencing group or the new 8th-arrondissement nightclub. Modeled after a Japanese izakaya bar with more covers and a touch of prohibition era glamour, the slick contemporary interiors by Alexander Schrepfer and Feng Shui master Carine Lamassourie are an understated play on contemporary Asian and European cultures.

Cartel: Japanese Tapas Along Paris' Canal Saint-Martin

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 1 Comment »

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 »

Le Comptoir Général: African Food, Drinks, and Dance Along Paris’ Canal Saint Martin

Le Comptoir General: Celebrating African with a Coffee Bar, Street-Style Thrift Store, Cocktail Bar, and Reggae Dance Floor Along Paris' Canal Saint Martin

Behind a street art mural along the Canal Saint Martin hides one of Paris’ best-kept secrets: the self-titled “Ghetto Museum” Le Comptoir Général. This multi-purpose treasure trove celebrates Franco-african culture through music, film, fashion, and dance, and has a steady following among in-the-know Parisians and expats.

Le Comptoir General: Celebrating African with a Coffee Bar, Street-Style Thrift Store, Cocktail Bar, and Reggae Dance Floor Along Paris' Canal Saint Martin

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Le Poutch: Coffee, Breakfast and Brunch on Paris’ Hip Canal Saint Martin

Visit Le Poutch Café for Breakfast, Brunch, or Lunch!, Inventive and Seasonal Food near Paris' Canal Saint Martin

Rife with hip cafés, the web of streets surrounding the Canal St. Martin are a hipster haven, boasting savvy coffee and lunch options to locals and visitors alike. Café Le Poutch may be new to the scene, but it’s already made 13, rue Lucien Sampaix its own.

Butternut squash quiche, savory muffins, or riz au lait with orange zest are just a glimpse of the culinary fare. Offering a rotating, seasonal menu and a commitment to serving up innovative recipes and vegetarian options, Le Poutch is sure to surprise you with something new.

Visit Le Poutch Café for Breakfast, Brunch, or Lunch!, Inventive and Seasonal Food near Paris' Canal Saint Martin

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Posted in Coffee, Food, Restaurant Reviews | 1 Comment »

Paris’ Best Indian Restaurants from Bollywood Kitchen Chef Sanjee

Indian Restaurants in Paris, Nalas Appakadai Bowls

Thali – Nalas Appakadai

Following our last post on Parisian Indian Chef Sanjee of Bollywood Kitchen when we visited her apartment in the very yummy-mummy 17ème arrondissement, she confirmed her frustration at the lack of good all-round Indian restaurants in the French capital. Despite a multitude of not-so-great restaurants, four spots have managed to hold her attention (and palate). She shares them with us below.

Indian Restaurants in Paris, Nalas Appakadai Team

Indian Restaurants in Paris, Marcel

Sanjee at Nalas Appakadai; Marcel

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews | 3 Comments »