Paris: Places to go, small suburban gems to know

 

By Chava Kuchar  

 

So before I share with you our little Parisian finds- I want to tell you that the highlight of our Paris trip was in fact this bike tour! Having been to Paris before it allowed us to get a holistic understanding of the city without relying on unachievable walking goals, going underground (with the metro) or paying high fees for cars, taxi's and Ubers. Thanks to Antonio, our guide and new friend, we developed a better understanding of the pedestrian and bike friendly nature of the city, as well as a history of its iconic architecture and urban development and Parisian culture in general. But really its Antonio and his team that are the shining stars of this guided tour, they were accessible and communicative prior to the tour, friendly to a fault, personable, cheerful and focused. In small groups of 4-6 people, it was a pleasure to spend 4 hours plus drinks with them. I would highly recommend this activity, I would even go as far as to say you wouldn't regret it.

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Atelier Cologne (https://www.ateliercologne.com)

Inspired by Lior’s recent review of the the book ‘The perfect scent’, we walked into the sweetest perfume shop and found a new scent that reminded me of home (a base of orange blossom, bc I live in a town known for its Pardesim, citrus orchards). During my visit, I learnt a great deal from the store manager, Elena about the perfumary processes and the subtle differences between perfume, cologne and the basis of these scents. Co-founded by Sylvie Ganter and Christopher Cervaselandinspired by the original Eue de cologne, the new Atelier Cologne Absolue was created combining citruses with the most precious natural raw materials for perfectly balanced creations and exceptional lasting power. I would really recommend seeking out this experience @ateliercologne – originating in France although I believe they now have perfumeries located throughout Europe, Canada and America.

 

Des Petites Haute (https://www.despetitshauts.com/en/nos-histoires-241.html)

When I looked through the window of this boutique and saw its contents, which is saying a lot because I didn’t find a boutique in Paris that I didn’t like, I dragged our exhausted behinds into the store to have a look and emerged with a new favorite fashion house, serious interior design inspiration and a gorgeous story to boot. 

So the story is as cute as the store and the clothes in it. It goes that these two sisters started their small quirky, fun and textile focused fashion company after they had a huge professional life fail (their loss, our gain). Fueled by life experiences, womanhood and a timely pregnancy, they followed the cues to a manufacturer and workshop in Greece that fulfilled all their desires. Since then they have been designing and manufacturing sustainably in Europe from the highest quality materials and the most original designs. Their designs are available online but there is no way to really experience the holistic design world that is Des Petite Haute without visiting a boutique.

 

Le Rideau de Paris, Est 1924

32 Rue de Bac, Paris

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Almost 100 years old, this boutique, chocked to the top with handmade paisley linen duvets, summer linen blouses and bamboo sheets, pillows and scarves. With little more than a short path to navigate the tiny store, there were 3 incredibly experienced ladies manning the helm, which for a tiny shop was outrageously busy and seamstress in the back taking names and making alterations. 

I felt like I was in an old film fueled by Parisian passions, caught in the dynamics of long friendships and the wise advice of a matriarch telling me that my life wouldn’t be complete without that bamboo scarf. Having purchased two, I can say with certainty that I agree with her. Make sure you visit this small icon of history before its isn’t there anymore.

Check out our Parisian travel blog and the our recommendations for the best of Parisian food.