Once upon a time, I worked in the Paris tourism industry. It was 2008, Haven in Paris (boutique apartment rental agency that is now Haven In) had begun to take off, and I had the good fortune to get hired as its first full-timer and startup maven-in-training. I was based in New York, but was able to spend some time in Paris getting to know, the city and their portfolio of beautiful properties — including the teeny-tiny studio I would call home (yes, it really does have Sacré Coeur views from the shower). It was a dream job, totally worth celebrating Obama’s election from afar.
Flash forward a decade (!!) to this August and my first work trip back to Paris since 2010. This time around, I’d just begun a global role for Context Travel, a connection initially made in my Haven in Paris days. Again, it made sense for me to come to Paris for a spot of training — though this time only for three days. Naturally, I called Erica, the owner of Haven in Paris at the time, to share the happy news. It even turned out that their Hôtel de Ville apartment I’d been admiring was free for a short last-minute stay, which added to the feeling of coming full circle.
So off I headed to Paris, wondering just how many of my old haunts I could cover in three days. As it turned out, I had a true “then vs. now” experience, visiting none (zero!) of my tried-and-true favorites and instead trying a number of great new spots.
Here’s my new Paris shortlist, a combination of top “now” spots from this past trip and my “then” favorites I can’t wait to revisit:
The Apartment: Centrally located and beautifully renovated Hotel de Ville 1-bedroom (now) vs. the teeny, romantic studio with shower views of Sacré Coeur (then). *See links below
Miznon – Emily Jackson
Messy, Delicious Lunch Sandwich: Shawarma at global Israeli chain Miznon along the Canal St-Martin (now) vs. falafel at L’as du fallafel in the heart of the Marais (then)
Miznon – Emily Jackson
Simple French Meal: Dinner at Repaire du Cartouche ending with an incredible cheese course (now) vs. lunch at Provençal favorite Chez Janou topped of with their generous chocolate mousse (then)
Coffee Break: Iced coffee at coworking space + café Craft (now) vs. at hipster coffee + bike-gear shop Steel (then)
Berthillon / Café Craft
Art Stop: All-out Context tour to see the Louvre greats (now) vs. a solo stop into Maison Européenne de La Photographie, which is closed for renovations until November (then)
Sweet Tooth: Trendy chou pastries at Popelini on another sweet Context tour (now) vs. blood orange sorbet at the classic Berthillon (then… and always!)
Fortunately, I know I’ll be back soon — and next time, I’ll have even more favorite spots to hit up. Guess that means I’ll just need a full week or two (or more!) — and another great home base to explore from.
- Haven In Sacre Coeur Studio and Hôtel de Ville apartments. Mention the code: HiPParis18 for special deals and a bottle of champagne with every booking for all HiP Paris readers!
- Read more about the delicious Miznon.
- For a great tour of Paris check out Context Travel.
Written by Sarah Raymond for HiP Paris. Looking for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, London, Provence, Tuscany, Umbria or Liguria? Check out Haven In. Mention the code: HiPParis18 for special deals and a bottle of champagne with every booking for all HiP Paris readers!