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Original souvenirs from Paris…

May 12, 2013
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If you’re looking for chic and trendy souvenirs from Paris, look no further, “Les Parisettes” is for you! “Les Parisettes” is a concept store specialized in different types of products: kitchen accessories, stationery, tote bags, jewelry, candles, games, cushions and home decoration ideas. Everyone can find an original gift, in the colors of Paris and the Eiffel Tower. Maryse Bazzoli and Sophie Ollé-Laprune, the creators of the store, pay a lot of attention to select refined, Eiffel-Tower fashioned, quality items, only for you!

Most of the items are created by Parisian or French designers. The best-sellers include plexiglas Eiffel Tower or cardboard Eiffel Tower that you can build yourself. Some of the items on sale were created exclusively for les Parisettes. For instance, the plexiglas Eiffel Tower, a stylish object changes colors accordingly to the light that surrounds it, was designed in a workshop in the 18th district of Paris.

Two shops are located in Paris:

Les Parisettes

26 rue Malar

75007 Paris

+33 9 80 55 14 77

Metro station : “La Tour Maubourg”

95 avenue Emile Zola

75015 Paris

+33 1 75 43 23 65

Metro station : “Emile Zola”

And if you wonder what “Les Parisettes” mean, it refers to a small plant which was used to make love potions in the Middle Ages…

www.lesparisettes.com

https://twitter.com/lesparisettes

https://www.facebook.com/Les.Parisettes

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Paris will always be Paris…

April 10, 2013
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The French economy may be at a standstill, there are still some good news. Among them, the confirmation that France is still an attractive destination for tourists from all over the world. In 2011, the number of foreign visitors reached a new high with almost 82 million tourists coming to France, a 5 %-increase compared to the record high of 2010. Once again France is comforting its status as the world most visited country in the world, beating  the USA, China and Spain.

More and more tourists come from BRIC countries but Europeans still make for 2/3 of the visitors and since they prefer short stays or weekends, France only ranks third in terms of revenues generated by tourism, behind the USA and Spain.

Not surprisingly, Paris is once more the most visited city in the world. With the trifle amount of 28 million visitors in 2011, the City of Light still attracts myriads of tourists who go to Notre-Dame, the Sacre-Coeur, the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower or the Georges Pompidou Art Museum, the city’s top 5 attractions. But it would be a cliché to think tourists do not visit other places, especially since the city has started to invest a lot of money to highlight its assets: 143 museums, 970 art galleries, 100 religious sites, 208 theaters, 3 opera houses, 463 parks and gardens, 5 major department stores…

The goal is to secure revenues generated by tourism, as 13% of all the salaried jobs in Paris are linked to tourism. In this regard, many tourists now visit the Canal Saint-Martin, the Coulée Verte, the Quai Branly Museum. They even venture outside of Paris to visit the “Saint-Denis” basilica, where most of the Kings and Queens of France are buried. This trend should continue in the future as the region is investing a lot to renovate and expand its infrastructure and transport facilities. The « Great Paris » will serve that purpose  with a huge metro system all around the city and new futuristic buildings such as the Philarmonic Concert Hall or the Angle Tower.

Meanwhile, significant efforts are being made in the hotel industry in order to comply with new international regulations and standards. The city’s 1.500 hotels are not always offering the kind of services visitors usually expect and choosing a place to stay may sometimes be a nerve-racking experience for first-time comers (which arrondissement, which metro station…). Thankfully, some websites offer an interesting selection of top hotels in Paris to make your stay as pleasant as possible.

The new year is already a few months deep but the most dynamic season is ahead of us. Therefore the answer officials are anxiously waiting for is whether or not 2013 will set a new recod high!

A Passion for France.

April 4, 2013
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 Starting on April 16th, the Orsay Museum will host one of the most awaited exhibitions of the 2013 Spring as it has gathered 70 masterpieces from the Marlene and Spencer Hays Collection. The Hays are an American couple from Nashville, Tennessee, who have developed a passion for art and France. Spencer has become a business mogul by selling, among other things, men’s suits, books and health insurance. Since the 1980’s century and as his fortune grew, he and his wife have gathered an amazing collection of works from the 19th and 20th century.

The exhibition at the Orsay Museum will give visitors the opportunity to admire a selection of this collection for 4 months, including works by Matisse, Modigliani, Edouard Vuillard, Bonnard and famous impressionists like Tissot, Eva Gonzales or Caillebotte. Among the masterpieces on display, visitors will have a unique chance to discover less famous paintings that offer an interesting hindsight about the period and the Impressionist movement.
 
Some of these paintings had never returned to France since they were acquired by the Hays. As the Hays have always cultivated a close friendship with curators at the Orsay Museum (the Hays are President of the “American friends of the Orsay Museum” association), this exhibition was made possible within a very short period of time. The Orsay Museum hopes some of the paintings stay in the Museum after the exhibition; which seems likely given the Spencer’s taste for Paris. Their Nashville residence has been built in order to reproduce the « Hôtel de Noirmoutier” rue de Grenelle, in the 7th arrondissement.
 
The Marlene and Spencer Hays Collection at the Orsay Museum from April 16th – August 18th
Open every day except on Modays from 9.30am to 6om (10pm on Thursdays)
Entrance ticket at 9€
Accommodation in Paris: hotels x apartments: All-Paris-Apartments

Paris is hosting this year the 7th edition of the World Series of Poker Europe

February 23, 2013

After three initial editions in London and then two successful years in Cannes, in the south of France, the World Series of Poker Europe (WSOPE) will be held in 2013 in the oldest casino in France. the lakefront Casino Barrière Enghien-les-Bains.

The move from Cannes to Paris was recently announced by WSOPE Executive Director Ty Stewart who said in a statement “Part of our vision for WSOP Europe is to mix poker and pleasure, and introduce players to some of the most exciting destinations in Europe.”  Believing that the location promises to be the “most comfortable and conducive setup for poker players in the WSOPE’s seven-year history”, Stewart described the Barrière’s facilities in Enghien as « amazing ». And it is true that the venue looks absolutely fantastic. Located just a few kilometers from Paris, the casino has gone through several remodeling projects and includes a large convention facility to handle the tournament as well as a 500-seat theater to host the televised final tables. Two hotels, a spa and a wellness center are also part of the complex.

The event will be held from October 11-24, 2013 and even though the schedule has not yet been released, one should once again expect to see seven WSOP gold bracelet events, a High Roller event, an assortment of satellites and cash games available on site as well as a No Limit Hold’em Main Event that will have an entry fee of 10,000 euros. In 2012, Phil Hellmuth Jr. made history by winning the Main Event to clinch his record-setting 13th bracelet. This year, the organizers are hoping that nearly 12 million Parisians will make sure that « Hellmuth doesn’t win another bracelet on French soil”.

10 photos of… façade details

February 6, 2013
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Let’s Do It, Let’s Fall In Love: Cole Porter, an American in Paris

January 16, 2013

Cole Porter wrote many 20th-century pop standards and Broadway hits, such as “Night and Day”, “Begin the Beguine,” “Too Darn Hot,” and “My Heart Belongs to Daddy, ” but if the American composer started his career in the early twenties, he did not make it big on Broadway until the sparkling musical comedy Paris, in 1928.  It is undeniable that the French capital, where Porter lived nearly twenty years, has greatly influenced the artist’s catalogue from Fifty Million Frenchmen (1929) and Dubarry Was A Lady (1939), to Can-Can (1953), and Les Girls (1955).

Porter’s love story with Paris started when he enlisted in the French Foreign Legion, with whom he served in North Africa. Rumor has it that he used to carry a portable piano on his back with which he entertained the troops with improvised songs. It is a real fact however that Porter received the “Croix de guerre” decoration from the French Government for keeping high the morale of his comrades.  

Unlike most expat writers, artists and musicians of the between the World War years in Paris, Cole Porter came from money. Born in Indiana in a very wealthy family, he studied in Yale and Harvard, married a rich American divorcee, the socialite Linda Lee Thomas, and lived in a luxurious apartment on Rue Monsieur in the chic 7th arrondissement neighborhood where they hosted wild parties. On one occasion, the Porters hired the entire Monte Carlo Ballet to entertain their guests; on another one, they took their guests by motor cavalcade from Paris to the Riviera for an entire weekend.

Ernest Hemingway described Paris in the twenties as a moveable feast. After watching the 2004 musical biopic De-Lovely which recounts Cole Porter’s life and career, there is little doubt that Porter years in the French capital were nothing short of flamboyant and glitzy.

Credit: photo from the www.music.vt.edu website

So Chic…So Parisian!

December 19, 2012

All over the world, Parisian women have the reputation of being effortlessly chic. They radiate an air of inner confidence and dress in a way that is all at the same time sleek, sexy and simple. Now, one of them, Ines de La Fressange, is sharing many of the secrets she has acquired over the years on the Parisian fashion scene in her 2011 book Parisian Chic: A Style Guide (Originally published in French as La Parisienne).

The 55 year old Ines de la Fressange is your quintessential Parisienne. A former model for Chanel in the 1980’s, she has been the image of Marianne, the symbol of the French Republic, before working as a designer and fashion consultant. Recently, she has been named the chicest woman in France by the readers of Le Figaro and has become the French face of L’Oréal.

With her book, the beautiful brunette wants to get the readers up to speed on Parisian style in a fun way. For instance, in a section entitled Dress Like a Parisian, she lists the 7 essentials every woman should have in her closet: a man’s blazer, a trench coat, a navy sweater, a tank top, a little black dress, jeans and a leather jacket. What to buy, what to wear, when to wear it, you will know all about the Parisian fashionistas’do’s and don’ts.

However, the author does not just give some advice on makeup (“Wear makeup every day, even on weekends. Your family wants to see you at your best, too!”), jewelry (“Never wear a necklace and earrings at the same time—too much!”) and home décor, she also shares her favorite addresses. From museums and shops to spas and restaurants, you will discover a Paris far different from the one described in your guide books.

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