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Not long ago, Pigalle, Paris’ former red-light district had a naughty reputation. Fast forward to 2021, this lively area located at the base of Montmartre has reinvented itself as one of the city’s trendiest quartiers.
Pigalle’s once grimy bars have transformed into hipster establishments accompanied by a wide array of artesian coffee shops, tasty restaurants, and stylish shops. To make it easier to find the best spots in the neighborhood, I’ve compiled a brief guide to this re-vamped quartier in the city of lights:
To start your day off, head along Pigalle’s main boulevard and you’ll find one of Paris’ most underrated museums: The Phono Museum. This 140 year old music lovers haven is jam packed with old timey music boxes, antique gramophones and rare vinyl. Be sure to check out the vintage record shop located at the back of the museum to take home a musical memento
When night falls, it’s worth a trip to Pigalle to check out the famous Le Moulin Rouge cabaret. However, the real must-do comes after the glitter smothered show in a tucked away bar nestled behind the Moulin Rouge’s turbines. Le Bar à Bulls is the perfect spot to debrief after the spectacle on the Japanese styled terrace overlooking the busy boulevard.
- The Phono Museum : 10 rue Lallier, 75009
- Le Moulin Rouge: 82 Boulevard de Clichy, 75018
- Le Bar à Bulls: 4Bis Cité Véron, 75018 Paris
Where to eat in Pigalle
Whatever food you’re craving, Pigalle will have you covered. For a classic French fix, check out Le Bon Bock and be taken back in time to the 19th century. Said to be one of the oldest restaurants in the area, Le Bon Bock serves delicious traditional French cuisine in a cozy wooden eatery.
For non-meat eaters, Pigalle has one of the best vegan restaurants in Paris. Check out brEATHE for incroyable plant based sweet treats and vegetarian dishes that are not only tasty but delightfully instagramable.
Craving something slightly less healthy but still delicious? Head to Dumbo on rue Jean-Baptiste Pigalle for one of the best smash style burgers around. And for those who can’t decide what it is they feel like munching, simply stroll down rue des Martyrs: an iconic Parisienne street stuffed with cafes, fromageries, boulangeries, restaurants, delicatessens, and almost anything your hungry brain can think of.
- Le Bon Bock – 2 Rue Dancourt, 75018
- brEATHE – 16 Rue Henry Monnier, 75009
- Dumbo – 64 rue Jean-Baptiste Pigalle, 75009
Where to drink in Pigalle
If you’re more down for some apéro and cocktails, there is plenty of choice in Pigalle.
For penny pinchers, head to rue Frochot and check out Lipstick or B9. Both have great happy hour deals, decent cocktails, and a lively atmosphere. If you’re after proper craftmanship, walk a few minutes further and you’ll find Le Mondain. The bar’s friendly owner Jerome is a class A mixologist who serves up some of the tastiest cocktails I have tried in Paris.
After something in between a bar and a restaurant? Lao is your place. Pop in for some sensational tapas paired with Asian fusion cocktails. I recommend giving the ‘Lao Mule’ a try – an Asian twist on the famous Moscow Mule!
Where to go for a night out
Pigalle’s naughty trait mostly alludes to its fantastic nightlife scene these days. One spot you shouldn’t miss – especially if you’re a fan of live music – is Le Bus Palladium. First opened in 1965, Le Bus Palladium has been visited by dozens of celebrities over the years, including the Beatles.
Next, head off down the street towards the Moulin Rouge and you’ll stumble across another legendary Paris club that’s been around since 1875 – Le Carmen. Party in its historic haussmannian style club that’s filled with mirrors at every spin.
Where to stay in Pigalle
Right in the middle of all the Pigalle madness you’ll find the iconic Grand Pigalle Hotel, which is also home to one of Michelin-starred chef Gregory Marchand’s restaurants Frenchie Pigalle. This boutique and swanky hotel will keep you amid it all while feeling on cloud nine.
Also on the main boulevard you will find the luxurious five hotel: Maison Souquet. In true Pigalle style, the former brothel is now a stunning boutique 20 room hotel, decorated with period paintings and antiques, all subtlety hinting back at its playful past.
- Grand Pigalle Hotel / Frenchie – 29 rue Victor Massé, 75009
- Maison Souquet – 10 Rue de Bruxelles, 75009
- Check out Plum Guide
There’s no doubt about it – Pigalle will show you a good time – whether you’re after a stroll through vibrant and picturesque streets, a party, or a fantastic journey into a trendy quartier of Paris. For those who want to enjoy a lively, fun, and hip side to Paris – make sure Pigalle is top on your list to discover.
- Here’s your guide for how to dress like a Parisian when visiting Pigalle.
- Another great guide to Pigalle.
- The best coffee spots in Paris right now.
Written by Verity McRae for HiP Paris. Looking to travel? Check out Haven In for a fabulous vacation rental in Paris, France or Italy. Looking to rent long-term or buy in France or Italy? Ask us! We can connect you to our trusted providers for amazing service and rates or click here. Looking to bring France home to you or to learn online or in person (when possible)? Check out new marketplace shop and experiences.