Category Archives: Passionate About Paris

Picnic Spots in Paris

Eiffel Tower & Champ de Mars © Barbara Hopkins

The Parisian press is trumpeting that summer has begun (I wish I shared their optimism) and exhorting citizens to get out and about to enjoy les beaux jours. Even in the heart of the city there are plenty of places to picnic and chill out, though it’s worth remembering that fires or barbeques of any sort are forbidden, as is consumption of alcohol in public places. Continue reading


Passionate About Paris: Heaven Scent

Alexander III Bridge, Paris © Barbara Hopkins

“Perfume is the most intense form of memory” said Jean-Paul Guerlain and as the last master perfumier of one of the world’s oldest perfume houses, he’s a man who should know.

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Passionate About Paris: Vegetarian? C’est pas grave!

Vegetarian?  Heading to Paris? C’est pas grave, as they say: it doesn’t matter.

Let’s face it, in the past our Gallic neighbours’ predilection for eating alleged delicacies such as duck’s gizzard has rendered them pretty impermeable to any understanding of the concept of vegetarianism.

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Passionate About Paris: 8th May 2012

Lots of people I know are about to head off to Paris for the first time for a  whistle-stop trip. They want to see and experience as much as possible of the grandeur, romance and sheer exuberance which characterises the City of Light.  But where to begin?  I’ve put together my top tips…

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Passionate About Paris: April 25th 2012

One of my favourite districts in Paris is around Rue Montorgueil. Tucked behind the bustle of Les Halles the pedestrianised Rue Montorgueil keeps that village-like feel and also a sense of history with its wrought-iron facades, painted shops and tiled decorative motifs above street level. Home to excellent food markets as well as historic patissier La Maison Stohrer, Rue Montorgueil also packs in bars, bistros and restaurants, providing ample diversions from the serious business of shopping and socialising.

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Passionate About Paris: April 18th 2012

I’m back from Paris buoyed up by a visit to my favourite city, even though this time it was viewed through the prism of a ghastly virus which did its best to floor my husband, then me, as he recovered. The benefits of self-catering took on a new dimension as I stocked the (large) fridge with all sorts of drinks and easy-to-eat foods, while the plan to fill it with delectable treats didn’t quite materialise….

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Good Manners, Bad Manners

I’m planning my next trip to Paris and really looking forward to it (anyone even vaguely connected to me will recognise this as a masterful piece of understatement). Though I’m passionate about Paris I’m always slightly non-plussed by examples of sheer bad manners by our Gallic neighbours.  I hasten to add that there are many examples of good manners too – but it set me thinking how far we’ve come on our little island in terms of service delivery and general courtesy.

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