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Holiday Fun for the Whole Family: Paris’ Most Kid Friendly Shows this Winter

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Editor’s Note: Hot on the heels of having built the “Festive Feasting” holiday treasure hunt in London’s V&A, Daisy de Plume is now attacking Christmas on her own home turf, Paris.  With her two kids in tow, here’s the shortlist of special kid-friendly circuses and shows going on for the holidays.

Emmanuel BurrielNuno Lopes

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Posted in Arts, Events | No Comments »

Winter Strolls: Three Itineraries for Soaking Up the Festive Atmosphere + Giveaway

Winter Strolls to Soak Up the Festive Season

Passage Jouffroy; Lily Heise

There’s something particularly special about Paris over the holidays. Of course there’s the sparkling street lights, the enticing window displays, the abundance of heavenly holiday treats, but it’s also something more than that. Spirits ride on this wave of joie and les parisiens can’t help but have a little extra joie de vivre. Here are three itineraries that will take you away from (most of) the crowds and allow you to take in that same joy, guilty pleasures, and offbeat sites that will make the holiday season in Paris truly shine.

Hip Shopping, Food and Culture in the Marais

Skip the mayhem of les grands magasins and do your holiday shopping as you take this creative meander through the Marais. Embark on your foray at the trendy concept store Merci, where you can pick up some of their carefully selected holiday ideas and perfect stocking stuffers like a candle version of their trademark red fiat bearing a roof-load of presents or a Christmas tree, thin garland thread, offbeat snow globes and an vast array of other cool gift ideas.

Winter Strolls to Soak Up the Festive Season

Merci Concept Store; Lily Heise

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Posted in Food, Markets, Shopping, Travel | 9 Comments »

Holiday Shopping: Unique Christmas Gifts from the City of Light

Christmas Gift Shopping in Paris, Rebecca Plotnick Photo Prints

Rebecca Plotnick Photography

Gift-giving is one of those benevolent acts that requires several critical components to come together in order to make the perfect package: it should be creative and thoughtful, yet useful; selflessly chosen, but still reflect a little bit of you, the giver.

Christmas Gift Shopping in Paris, COTO Design Handmade Cushions

CO TO

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Posted in Shopping | 1 Comment »

Holiday Dining in Paris: Christmas and New Year’s Eve Openings

hip-paris-blog-hol-resto-openings-bistrot-paul-bert-flickr-eric-folger

Bistrot Paul Bert, Eric Folger

It’s the holiday season and those who jump on vacation as an opportunity for international travel often flock to Paris this time of year. There is an undeniable charm that comes along with the winter chill in the city. Neighborhoods are decorated with draping christmas lights and other ornamentation and window shopping is taken to a whole new level with detailed shop displays embodying the spirit of the season to the most minute detail.

hip-paris-blog-hol-resto-openings-carina-okula

Carina Okula

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Posted in Food | No Comments »

A Different Kind of Christmas: First Holidays and New Traditions in France

HiP Paris blog. A different kind of Christmas. No matter where you care, you can always curl up with a cup of coffee and some Christmas cookies to ward off the holiday blues.

“If you put yourself in a position where you have to stretch outside your comfort zone, then you are forced to expand your consciousness.” – Les Brown

It’s not very cold out today. For lack of a better term (and one you’re probably hearing a lot this year), it’s unseasonably warm. There’s no Christmas tree in my apartment. No gifts either. No creatures stirring. Not even a mouse! This isn’t to say that the Christmas spirit is absent in Paris… It’s definitely here. The mayor’s office is fully decked out with amazing trees that are three times my height, covered in ornaments the size of my head. The shops in my neighborhood are lit up and filled with gifts, and there’s even Armée du Salut, or Salvation Army, workers jingling their bells. I’ll soon be traveling to Orléans to spend Christmas with my husband’s family, but until then I’ll continue my week just like any other.

HiP Paris blog. A different kind of Christmas, Fruit crepes are appropriate no matter what the season.

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Posted in Parisian Living | 3 Comments »

A Francophile Holiday Gift Guide & Giveaway From the Paris Print Shop

Holiday Gift Guide, HiP Paris Blog

Salted Caramel Macarons from La Petite Sucre

It’s that time of year again! The time of aimless meandering through crowded streets or malls, searching for the perfect gift for that special someone. To make it a little bit easier for you, Nichole Robertson has put together a sweet little francophile gift guide. She is also offering up three great gift packages for three lucky readers: each winner will receive one extra-large print of your choice from the Paris Print Shop, a 2014 Paris calendar, and a set of four cards from the Paris Traveler Series! Instructions for entering are at the bottom of the post. Good luck! -Genevieve

Update: Congrats to our winners Adelle in Vermont, Jacqueline in Maine, and Chris in West Virginia!

I’m Nichole. I’m a writer, photographer and co-owner of an NYC metro-based creative studio, Obvious State. The focus of my work for the past few years has been Paris photography, so I spend a lot of time traveling back and forth (and staying in Haven in Paris apartments, which is how I met the lovely HIP staff).

Holiday Gift Guide, HiP Paris Blog, Print by Nichole Robertson

Extra large print from the Paris Print Shop by Nichole Robertson

I spent about two months this year working on The Paris Journal and my second book with Chronicle Books, which means I was able to frequently satisfy my own Francophile urges: Bordier butter, Laurent Dubois cheese, La Fermière yogurt and baguettes. Many, many baguettes.

Holiday Gift Guide, HiP Paris Blog 3

Merci stampParis street style bookpillow by Alexandra Fergusonmetro coaster by Tilissimo
 

You see the theme there, right? French dairy and bread. Not exactly giftable, or available in the US. Though I’ve discovered that you can buy Échiré butter here and on Amazon, and have happy danced over that discovery.

Holiday Gift Guide, HiP Paris Blog, Bags by Kasia Dietz

Bag by Kasia Dietz

So if you can’t fly your loved one to Paris this year, I put together a few things for that favorite Francophile in your life. Continue Reading »

Posted in Shopping | 106 Comments »

HiP Paris Best Of 2012: Happy Holidays!

As this year draws to a close, we want to take this time to thank all our wonderful readers (that’s you!) and the talented writers and photographers who make this blog what it is. We wouldn’t be here without you!

A few very important things happened here on HiP Paris in 2012:

Paige Frost taught us how to become French and gave us important advice on French bathroom etiquette. She finds French men seductive, sexy, cool, so it’s no surprise she got married in a French chateau.

Amy Thomas had some great tips on navigating the French dining scene if you’re a vegetarian. She took on one of the biggest questions of all time and introduced us to the fabulous Melissa Unger of Seymour Projects. Since she’s also an expert on all things sweet, we were really excited to get her list of favorite French chocolate shops.

Tory Hoen had fashion tips for the spring, summer, and fall, and she even weighed in on the wedge sneaker debate (yes, those happened in 2012 too).
She also confessed to the 5 freaky French foods she’s still afraid to eat.

Jessie Kanelos took us fall market shopping, shared her experiences of Halloween and Thanksgiving in France, and she let us peek into the Camion Qui Fume’s gorgeous cookbook.

Elise Marafioti discovered the best new places to buy beer (People’s Drugstore) and coffee (Ten Belles and the Black Market) in Paris. Thanks for taking one for the team Elise!

Erica Berman discovered l’Office and Le Chateaubriand, two of our very favorite restaurants this year. Continue Reading »

Posted in Parisian Living | 5 Comments »

Christmas in Paris: Family Fun in the City of Light

THEfunkymanMarine*B

Ahh, Christmas in Paris. The twinkling lights, fabulous holiday shopping, vin chaud and cozy nights by the fire. Isn’t it romantic? Sure, unless you have kids, in which case, copious lists for Santa, too many unscheduled hours and sugar overload can lead to a merry meltdown, turning even the cheeriest maman into the Grinch. That’s why I’m filling our family calendar with lots of happy holiday diversions. Here’s what we’ll be up to this most wonderful time of the year.

remster_9

Festive holiday windows. Parisians are accustomed to lust-worthy window shopping; faire du lèche-vitrine (literally “window licking”) is a time-honored activity here. Continue Reading »

Posted in Parisian Living | 2 Comments »

December Events Paris: Ice Skating, Christmas Trees, Notre Dame, Omnivore and more . . .

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)

Holiday Fun
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.

Notre Dame (el_malino & Herve “Setaou” BRY)

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 »

Posted in Arts, Events | 7 Comments »

Christmas in the City of Lights: Seeking Out Paris’ Holiday Cheer

Mic Mac

When I popped home to the UK in November, London was already in full festive swing with Christmas trees, festive songs and neon lights galore. Sent back with a Cadbury’s chocolate advent calendar adorned with an oversized Santa, I was ready to start the Christmas season with a bang.

Making Magique

Yet once back home across the pond, I realized Paris hadn’t joined in on the fun yet. I was ready to start in on my advent calendar and temperatures were plunging, but where were all those tell tale signs that our favorite mid-winter festival was fast approaching?

This set me thinking. What exactly is a Parisian Christmas? What happens in the cold windy days leading up to the big event? I set out on a mission to discover the seasonal delights that France’s most romantic city had to offer.

Little Brown Pen

Shopping

Although the Christmas shopping frenzy begins relatively late in Paris (thankfully, shops only step into gear at the end of November), once it gets going, it really gets going. Stores go all out with light shows and designer-crafted window displays – always tasteful, bien sur. First stop? Paris’s iconic department stores. Whilst London has toy-filled Hamleys and elegant Harrods, Paris showcases its trademark sophistication with Les Galleries Lafayette and the neighbouring Printemps, where Karl Lagerfeld’s touch marks this year’s displays: think Chanel-clad rock ‘n’ roll dolls strumming their electric guitars and 20m Christmas trees. Continue Reading »

Posted in Events, Shopping, Travel | 5 Comments »