June 28, 2016
Daisy de Plume
Apart from being romantic, Paris is also marvelously family-oriented. Despite this, it can be tiring traveling en famille. My son, Storsh, is far more tourist-tolerant if he knows some “kid time” is just around the corner. So instead of making the whole day about the kids, why not plan your days with several bursts of kid-time in between what you want to see? I’ll even give Storsh a few city facts, explaining that I’m going to quiz him on them before his next “kid-time,” and watch his ears perk up a bit. Here are some of my favorite kid-friendly activities, all of which are free or cost less than 5€.
Daisy de Plume
What’s better than free fun? Smack dab in the middle of town is the gorgeous Palais Royal, with Daniel Buren’s stripy stumps that any Parisian kid has raced through. Or there’s always the forest of columns at either end of the enclosed gardens, once Cardinal Richelieu’s residence, where my family and I play a quick game of hide-and-seek when passing through.
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April 6, 2016
Until April 9th, the Musée de Minéralogie is hosting an exhibition of British artist Amy Hilton’s work. As the museum name might suggest, Hilton’s subject of choice is very much nature-based and the aesthetic ethereal and soft. There’s an interesting calming effect to viewing her work, one we could all use a bit of. And not surprisingly, I first learned of Amy Hilton via the wonderful Seymour Magazine.
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December 3, 2014
The holiday season has begun in Paris and while the usual lineup of seasonal pop-up events – from ice skating at Hôtel de Ville to the Christmas markets scattered around the city – are back, this December brings a handful of other wonderful events as well.
The Centre Pompidou recently opened a retrospective of cult American artist Jeff Koons’s work. The exhibition is on view until April 27 and features some of the Koons’s most iconic pieces, from a Michael Jackson sculpture to the ever-recognizable oversized balloon animals.
December 3 – January 25: The Cinémathèque Française kicked off a month-and-a-half-long series of screenings honoring American filmmaker John Ford. You can attend a screening of Ford’s Hollywood classics up until January 25th at the Musée du Cinéma in the 12ème.
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December 1, 2012
Whether you’re going to Paris for the holidays or just for some wintertime fun, there’s plenty happening this month to keep you entertained! – Genevieve
Christmas displays in Paris (abrunete)
December may be the best month to take in Notre Dame. They have their classic Christmas tree up in the square and a light/music show inside the nave each hour throughout December. Go on December 18th and stay for the Monteverdi Vespers concert. Beginning December 12, a special seating structure in the square will be open to the public, offering visitors a different perspective on the cathedral’s beautiful stained glass windows.
Lucky enough to be ringing in the New Year in Paris? There are evening concerts at churches around the city, like St. Eustache, La Madeleine and more. Continue Reading »
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November 2, 2012
Through December 16: A self-proclaimed “wandering space for the undiscovered, unintentional and untrained artists of our times,” The Museum of Everything’s Paris exhibition – and concept at large – are bucking the norm and showcasing pieces that may not otherwise see a museum’s walls. “Exhibition #1.1,” as its called, includes works of over 500 self-taught creators, working in various media and with inspiration that spans the globe.
Through November 4: Salon du Chocolat: Likely the most delicious event this month, the Salon du Chocolat offers a little something for anyone with a sweet tooth. There is an entrance fee, but once inside the expo space you will be greeted by the wafting scent of cacao, and visual displays of all the chocolate your heart could desire. Normally, picking up these kinds of specialty items would include a day of traipsing around Paris, but here they are all congregated, ready to be tasted and taken home. Continue Reading »
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June 4, 2012
Fête de la Musique
June 21 brings the Fete de la Musique back for its 31st year. This year the festival celebrates 50 years of pop, and with a full lineup of gratuit concerts, there is certainly something for every taste.
June 5: Magnificat: Polychoral music at Notre-Dame de Paris. An extraordinary opportunity to enjoy a concert in one of the world’s most famous cathedrals. This show celebrates the works of famed composers Michael Praetorius and Giovanni Gabrieli, who drastically shaped the transition from Renaissance to Baroque music in Europe.
June 6: Brooklyn synth pop duo Chairlift is playing at La Gaîté lyrique. If ethereal harmonies (and the Apple ad featuring their 2008 “Bruises”) is your thing, this is your show. Continue Reading »
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April 17, 2012
When we decided to move to France, one of the biggest decisions was where to send our kids to school. International bilingual? (Too expensive.) Private Catholic? (Too Catholic.) American Montessori? (Too American.) Public French school? (Perhaps too…French?)
We opted for total immersion in our neighborhood maternelle, the French equivalent of preschool + K. And so our adventure in French schools began. What we’ve found has been a cultural education in itself, surprising, occasionally maddening and enlightening all at once.
School is free. For Americans and Brits accustomed to shelling out thousands for private education, this was a most welcome change. No more paying $800 per month for our three-year-old to attend morning preschool. No more monthly kindergarten fee (even at the local public school). School was free! It was hard to imagine.
The Napoleonic dream. The French system is indeed rigid, disciplinarian and devoted to the teaching method envisioned by Napoleon. Kids are not so much taught as trained – to absorb information by memorization and dictation with an eye toward shaping little French citizens. Where was the individuality? Creative problem solving? These were American constructs with no place in a system with only two answers: right or wrong. Hmm.
Le Menu de la Semaine The state-sponsored lunch service (“la cantine“) surprised and delighted us with its weekly menus rivaling a Michelin-starred restaurant. A sample daily menu, including four courses, might include:
Salade de pomme de terre/tomates
Escalope de poulet à la crème
Duo carottes / salsifis
Yaourt aromatisé Poire
Pain / fromage Jus de pomme
At least one day per week is strictly bio (organic). And no menu is complete without the daily “suggestion du soir,” the recommended dinner selection to prepare at home to complement that day’s dejeuner. The scene at the cantine is something to behold: Groups of preschoolers sit at small round tables, their place settings complete with porcelain plates, bowls and glasses. They spend no less than 45 minutes a day a table. Just like the States, non? Continue Reading »
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December 18, 2009
Ornaments at Christmas market. Photo: hotels-paris-rive-gauche.com
Text by Emma Haberman
With just a few more chocolates left in the advent calendar, it’s time to finalize those Christmas Day plans. If you’re not at home, there’s no better or more magical place to be on December 25th than the City of Light. Though national museums and many stores are closed, there are plenty of ways to take in the city and still celebrate the holiday season in style. A few suggestions for a very HiP Christmas: Continue Reading »
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October 8, 2009
Food blogger, photographer, and world traveler Heidi Swanson reflects on 10 idyllic days in Paris. From the flea markets at Clignancourt to the gelato at Pozzetto to dinner at Le Verre Volé, she hit a number of our favorite spots.
Text and photos by Heidi Swanson, 101 Cookbooks
It’s 5:45 in the morning, the sky is starting to glow ever so slightly near the horizon, and all is still and quiet outside. I’m sitting on my sofa wide awake. My body thinks it’s the middle of the day, and there is no way around it – I’m in for a couple more early mornings before I can shake this jet lag. So. I thought I’d make myself some tea, watch the sun come up, and take a bit of time to share my notes on Paris, before the details of this adventure start to slip my mind. Continue Reading »
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