City of Love: Romantic Paris with Friends
Time with my girlfriends in Paris is usually spent drooling in front of the shopwindows of Dior and Chloé, or recovering from the sugar coma derived from eating too many Ladurée macarons. Of course, these are wonderful activities, but make no mistake: this is Paris, the city of love and romance. So, even when I’m sans a plus-one, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the romantic city with my favorite lady pals in tow. Here is a rundown of my favorite places.
Le Musée de la Vie Romantique (16, rue Chaptal, in the 9th Arrondissement) never ceases to impress. Housing Chopin’s mementos, Rousseau’s paintings and Delacroix’s drawings, this little museum is discreetly tucked at the bottom of the Montmartre hill. Every time I go, I feel like I’ve been transported back to an old world of watercolor-tinted romance. The tearoom with a terrace is also the perfect place to revel in the beauty of the place, while agreeing with your girlfriends that “they just don’t do romance like that nowadays.”
While you’re in the area, walk over to the Wall of Love (behind the Abbesses metro entrance in the Jehan-Rictus square), a mural where the words I love you are inscribed in 310 languages.
Lingerie shopping is best done with girlfriends who can be honest about what looks good. So, as a souvenir treat to bring back to your boyfriend, pick up a lacy little number at Chantal Thomass (211, rue St.-Honoré, in the 1st), the most exquisite lingerie house in Paris.
By this time, all these girly adventures will surely have worked up your appetite for some bubbly, which is why you should head to Flûte l’Étoile (19, rue de l’Étoile, in the 17th) for your evening aperitif. Once a gentleman’s saloon, this small champagne bar is clad in red velour, cozy alcoves and fireplaces. The extensive champagne list, gourmet appetizers and live jazz make for the perfect place to wind down the day with your best gals.
Now, it wouldn’t be fair to write this miniguide without revealing a truly sexy destination, which is why Apéros Coquin deserves mention. A chic alternative to more sordid places, this women’s-only event hosts a sale of high-end lingerie and “toys” in a very elegant flat. Here, you and your girlfriends can sip on quality champagne and munch on delicious French desserts while browsing the best sellers in bedroom fashion.
More of Camille’s writings and photos can be found at www.parisinpink.com.
Editor’s note: Why not take a do-it-yourself tour of Paris, using the Girls’ Guide’s downloadable walking tours? It’s much more fun than dragging around a heavy guidebook.