On our most recent visit to Paris we stayed in the 17ème arrondissement, which made the perfect base for exploring some of the city’s most prestigious areas, from the high-end shopping districts in the south of the 17th, to the large avenues of the Passy district in the 16th arrondissement.
Avenue Victor Hugo
From the Arc de Triomphe not far from our hotel we resisted the urge to continue on to our usual touristy shopping haunt, the Champs Elysées, in favour of a stroll down Avenue Victor Hugo. The large avenue was lined with beautiful Haussmanian townhouses and dotted with some high-end boutiques that Bec couldn’t resist a peek at.
Guêpes & Papillons
The stand-out for me was the specialty hair brush store, Guepes & Papillons (Wasps & Butterflies) which featured some very luxurious monogrammed brushes in its store window. A selection of delicate combs and dainty hairclips were also on display. At one-hundred-and-seventy-five euros for a large brush, these would make for a very special gift (hint, hint) or an indulgent splurge to spoil yourself with.
Place Victor Hugo
As we crossed over into the 16th arrondissement we reached Place Victor Hugo where we stumbled on a colourful fruit and vegetable market and equally colourful parisiens, not least of which was an adorable bulldog waiting in his very own pram for his owner outside of what looked like a very popular patisserie. A turn into Avenue Raymond Poincaré led us through the streets of Passy, past a small easy-to-miss church where a wedding was taking place, before arriving at the war memorial by the Trocadéro.
Dépôt-Vente Luxe Passy
It was then time to offload the package I’d brought with me from Brussels – a pair of brand new Dolce & Gabbana high-heeled leather booties that I’d bought online but never managed to successfully walk in. On a previous visit to Paris I’d found some great Chanel pieces in this designer consignment shop in Passy and decided to entrust my D&Gs to them in the hopes that they might be able to find them a new home. The consignment process was surprisingly simple, in no time at all I’d exchanged my shoes for a sales contract – now fingers crossed they actually sell!
Jardins Du Trocadéro
In all the excitement lunchtime had completely passed us by, but luckily there was a crèpe stand at the Trocadéro Gardens that made a mean ham and cheese galette to order. Not shy with with their portions, this crèpe was mighty heavy to hold! No complaints here, it was a delicious afternoon snack enjoyed on a park bench overlooking the Eiffel Tower.
Up next was a short trip past Place d’Iéna en route to La Patisserie Cyril Lignac which I’d had my sights on for a while. In this part of the 16th arrondissement we passed a number of fancy hotels, museums and embassies and, curiously, quite a few groups of young girls dressed up in very elaborate Alice in Wonderland-style costumes, complete with curly wigs and cartoonish make-up. I didn’t have the chance to ask them where they were going since they all seemed to be in such a hurry (late for a very important date?)…
It was then back to the hotel to enjoy the rest of our patisseries but not before stopping at the Palais des Congrès shopping centre where we picked up some more French treats at the Galeries Gourmandes, a specialty grocery store filled with aisles and aisles of pâtés, cheeses, and wines. A food lover’s dream, these made for a nice apéritif before dinner at Restaurant Le Chardenoux.