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Beyond Colette: Paris Concept Store Shopping and Dining Bliss

HiP Paris Blog rounds up Paris' best concept store cafesMaison Sarah Lavoine – Francis Amiand

When the archetypical concept store Colette closed last year, loyal locals and tourists alike mourned the end of an era. The 1st arrondissement shop was a Paris institution as well as a trailblazer in the world of concept stores- becoming the example that all others were measured against.

While die hard fans will argue that nothing will ever replace this innovative space and business model, the unique combination of shopping and indulgence that Colette offered can still be found in the capital.

Here’s a list of some of our favorite spots to shop and dine to our hearts content:

HiP Paris Blog rounds up Paris' best concept store cafes

HiP Paris Blog rounds up Paris' best concept store cafesLa Trésorerie – Julie Ansiau

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Posted in Food, Restaurant Reviews, Shopping | No Comments »

Before & After: The Renovation of Haven in Paris’ Victor Hugo Luxe Apartment

Victor Hugo Luxe Living room more

Salon, Julien Hausherr

Haven in Paris’ newest four-bedroom apartment, Victor Hugo Luxe (emphasis on the luxe), is found on a quiet street just minutes away from the Eiffel Tower and the Bois de Boulogne. The owner and interior decorator took the HiP Paris Blog through the nine-month renovation process of this spacious, Belle Époque gem. 

Victor Hugo Luxe Kitchen and Balcony

Kitchen and Balcony, Julien Hausherr

Built in 1903, the apartment was owned by the same family for 50 years and had not been remodeled since 1970. The design team wanted to revamp the out-of-date 70s-style interior and revive its elegant, turn-of-the-century charm.

Victor Hugo Luxe Dining Table

Dining Room, Julien Hausherr

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Posted in Apartment, Homes, Parisian Living | 1 Comment »

Apartment Makeover: Before & After in Erica’s Montmartre Studio

Hip Paris blog friend and fabulous resource on all things Paris, Parisien Salon, recently stayed in our little Montmartre studio and published this article about our very own Erica Berman and her amazing job renovating Pilleux, Haven in Paris’ cozy Montmartre studio. We are pleased to share the story and the before-and-after shots here.

Paris Pilleux Montmartre Studio ViewView from Pilleux Montmartre Studio


Erica Berman has a gift. She can look at a crumbling shell of a hovel and see its potential as a beautiful apartment. This gift has served her well over her 18 years living in Paris, as she’s renovated upwards of 15 apartments that started out as “blah” (at best), only to be transformed into “wow.”

Pillexu far wall after renovations
Pilleux Wall before renovations Pilleux Studio – Murphy bed with antique doors, after and before

Her most recent project really put her abilities to the test, as she and her partner Alain renovated a small studio overlooking the Cimetière de Montmartre. Having stayed in what is now a fantastic apartment, I was stunned when Erica shared the story of its evolution.

“There was nothing there but the bones when we bought it,” explains Erica. “Just a shelf.” Looking at some of the “before” photographs also reveals peeling walls, unremarkable floors and an enclosed bathroom that cut the space dramatically. “There was nothing in there we wanted to keep,” she adds.

Erica and Alain worked with an architect to determine the best way to use the space. Once they agreed on the layout, they got to work with a contractor. Continue Reading »

Posted in Design, Homes, Parisian Living | 13 Comments »

Paris Fashion Showrooms: The New Way to Shop


Last winter, I was strolling through the Place des Vosges, when I came upon a seemingly endless line of women snaking around the walkway. I wondered what could possibly inspire these women to wait patiently in the cold. Was Johnny Depp offering free massages inside? As it turns out, a designer had opened her showroom to the public, and these fashionable females were simply waiting to get their hands on the fine frockery inside.

In a city known for its fashion sense, designer showrooms have become the new temples for shoppers, offering a more exclusive alternative to the well-groomed Parisienne. A cross between a designer’s workshop and a boutique, these showrooms give the shopping public access to the latest lines, where they can make purchases and maybe even meet the designer. Here are just a few designers who’ve opened their showrooms to the public:


Swedish jewelry designer Viveka Bergström is at the center of haute couture, and

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opens her showroom on the canal Saint-Martin from Monday to Saturday and by appointment to present her new collections. (23 rue de la Grange-aux-Belles, Paris 10th, Tel +33 (0)1 40 03 04 92; Monday to Saturday, 11am-7pm)

Médecine douce welcomes fans of trendy accessories to its bohemian-chic workshop on rue de Marseille. (10 rue de Marseille, Paris 10th, Tel +33 (0)1 48 03 57 17; Monday to Saturday, 11am-7pm) Continue Reading »

Posted in Shopping | 7 Comments »

Penthouse Living: Artist Markus Hansen’s View From Above

stairs and downstairsThe staircase and downstairs dining area.

In his work, German artist Markus Hansen spends considerable time trying to “undefine” himself. Whether working on films, sculpture installations, or urban projects, he uses his art to explore the contradictions he sees in the world. Eleven years ago, when he designed the apartment that would become his family’s home in Paris’ 5th arrondissement, his intention was quite the opposite. The duplex penthouse apartment—complete with 360 square meters of wraparound balconies and a rooftop terrace—is a study in spatial harmony and fluidity. Continue Reading »

Posted in Arts, Events, Homes, Parisian Living | 1 Comment »