Paris Day 4: Le Grand Palais, Le haut Marais...

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And The "Grand Palais " ! This amazing place was built for the 1900 Universal Exibition . The construction is a mix of steel /glass and stone and was built in only 3 years. Later on this place was used as a "convention center " but it finally closed it's doors and was abandoned for many years . Some major renovation started in 2000 and were still going on until last year. Special events and exhibitions are held at the Grand Palais now and the only way you can visit this place. We were happy that 2 fantastic events were going on this april.


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First : The Tour Auto ....Vintage cars are displayed in the central Nave today waiting to leave at sunrise tomorrow and race through France for 5 days.Many of our friends are participating in this famous race and it will give us a chance to see them.

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You can read about the Grand Palais on their website :


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With our friend Regis Mathieu who's racing in a vintage Porsche . Regis owns a magnificent atelier in Provence where they restaure chandeliers from the National Monuments and create also beautiful lamps.


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Now we're going to the Helmut Newton Exibition in south wing of the Palais. We are big fans of Helmut and this was  really special to be able to see his photos . Fabulous !

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One more cute Confection Store with some Easter display

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"Merci " THE must go to store in Paris....the Anthropologie of Paris with a cafe, a library, clothes, furniture,accessories.....

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Piles of linen sheets in trendy colors

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Next block : Le Bonton ; a concept store for kids with a hair salon, bedroom furniture , fun toys with a vintage or hip twist and clothes of course...on 3 stories !

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Beautiful window displays in the Haut Marais...

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Time for our afternoon sweet treats . We are at "Pain de Sucre" patisserie ....cakes are amazing of course with unusual flavor mixes , the macarons are just perfect but the star of the show for us will be the fresh home made "marshmallow " or Guimauves flavored with orange blossom water ( the big cubes in the glass jar in the window....) We are still dreaming about those !

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G.Detou in french =I have everything ! Everything for pastry and cooking....I'm going to stock up !


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Centre Georges Pompidou known as Centre Beaubourg is the largest Museum of moderm art in Europe

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La bleue ...the real blue Mobylette ...the french moped

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The "Rue de la Grande Truanderie " was in XII Paris a very very dangerous street with lots of thiefs and pickpockets ....in one name : Truands !


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The beautiful streets of Paris .....


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06:20 Posted by Marielle Giai in Travel | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |


Day 3 in Paris...Les Puces et Montmartre .

Early morning sunday ...we're off to "Les Puces" the flea market of St Ouen.

The new flashy subway seats ...

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I have to say that I found Paris a LOT cleaner and a lot safer than before....very good news !!! You still have to be aware of course ...specially going to the flea market but we took the subway everywhere and it was so much better than when I use to come to work for Fashion Week. DSCN0668 [1280x768].JPG

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St Ouen ...here we go ! It is absolutly freezing , the wind is as cold as the Mistral and it is barely 40 F !

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A "wrong way" sign turned into a cafe table...DSCN0672 [1280x768].JPG

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"Do not look anywhere else...it is here ! "DSCN0702 [1280x768].JPG

"Chez Louisette " ....typical parisian bistro in the middle of the Marche ...just when you think you really got lost !!! French menu , some live accordion music and  Louisette singing Edith Piaf tunes....what else do you wish for ??!?!DSCN0736 [1280x768].JPG

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Very Theatrical "mise en scene" in this shop. Loved it!

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Our favorite shop ...but no photos inside :( DSCN0732 [1280x768].JPG

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Late lunch  at Brasserie Wepler place Clichy....not the most touristy spot for lunch or dinner but close to the Marche and walking distance to the Moulin Rouge and Montmartre.... Cafe Louisette won't do it for us ...we need some serious food to warm us up : A "choucroute " please ! Sauerkraut cooked in white wine with all the fixins : ham shank, a slab of bacon, sausages,  potatoes...and some hot french mustard :)DSCN0745 [1280x768].JPG

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And a  "Pied de porc" ( porc feet ) for Pascal !

A funny looking "Baba au Rhum " ....helps to digest ! DSCN0746 [1280x768].JPG

An "art nouveau" entrance sign.DSCN0752 [1280x768].JPG

The Village of Montmartre.DSCN0762 [1280x768].JPG

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We should be selling "Sabre" plastic fun silverware in our shop soon ! DSCN0761 [1280x768].JPG

Le Sacre Coeur ! We're on top of Paris ....DSCN0778 [1280x768].JPG

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This is now a Gallery ...DSCN0804 [1280x768].JPG

Hip clothing store in Montmartre.DSCN0800 [1280x768].JPG

Enjoying a warm Grand Marnier crepe before to take the metro .DSCN0809 [1280x768].JPG

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05:40 Posted by Marielle Giai in Travel | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |


Day 2 in Paris : Saint Germain .


Mariage freres fine tea , a fresh squeezed orange juice, the most perfect bread, sweet butter and a croissant ....I'm in heaven ! ....no... I'm just in France !


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Shopping in Saint Germain today ....It's cold but at least it's not raining ...yet !

The window displays from Puyricard chocolatier still have Easter Eggs , roosters and bunnies. It reminded us of our childhood....every bakery even in our tiny village had huge chocolate eggs stuffed with even more eggs....we couldn't wait for Easter sunday !

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Chacok : One of my must stop for colorful prints. I model for the brand for years and just love it !

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The very famous Poilane bakery in St GermainDSCN0632 [1280x768].JPG

Lunch stop at "Brasserie Lipp"  for the food of course, the mythic decor and the ballet of waiters in black and white with bow-tie and a great sense of humour !DSCN0587 [1280x768].JPG

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The sign says: " to Mister our clients, please do not let your dog eat in the restaurant dishes and do not let them jump on the seats "DSCN0591 [1280x768].JPG

Our absolute favorite in any Brasserie : Andouillette ,frites !! A tripe sausage very soft texture , not chewy at all, mild in taste  to eat with fries and mustard of course ....waow do we miss that in San Diego !!!DSCN0595 [1280x768].JPG

For me it will be a Provencal classic: Brandade de morue au gratin with a frisee salad. Brandade is a salted cod ( baccala for the italiens ) . It is desalted over night in cold water , then boiled and mixed with olive oil to make it  creamy .Then it is added to a plain mash potatoe and broiled. The best one is made by my aunt who ad some black truffles ...amazing !DSCN0596 [1280x768].JPG

Pinatas in a children's store window display .DSCN0641 [1280x768].JPG

We would love to stop at Pierre Herme for some macarons but the line is out the door ...next timeDSCN0597 [1280x768].JPG

Rue du Bac : Bought some sweets at "La grande epicerie de Paris" a huge fine grocery store across "Le Bon Marche " Paris finest department store . We did some shopping !!! French bed linen from our favorite brand ....just because flat sheets in France are much longer and you can bring them all the way to the top of the bed and still have  a big wide fold over the blanket :)DSCN0647 [1280x768].JPG

Because of my Japanese roots , I have to go Aoki's Patisserie: Aoki is a talented japanese pastry chef, french trained  who opened his first patisserie in Paris , blending french perfect technique and japanese style . His cakes have custard creams flavored with match green tea, sophisticated red bean or sesame seeds in zen design shapes.DSCN0616 [1280x768].JPG

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The french dog ....DSCN0659 [1280x768].JPG

No hamburgers for us !DSCN0662 [1280x768].JPG

We are going to "Les Cocottes de Constant" a tiny restaurant serving most dishes cooked in a cast iron "cocotte" . Comfort food , yes but done to perfection by an army of talented chefs. And the best surprise was for desert : A "Mamia " sheep milk yogurt like we've had in Biarritz and would make me drive all the way there just for a Mamia ....the most surprising "yogurt" you can ever have : light like air, taste like whipped cream , no sheep milk taste at all, easy to digest for us lactose intolerents....it is served mith honey but I recommend strongly to eat it with just a little crunchy granulated sugar to enjoy the delicate flavor....

From the same owner the "Violon d'Ingre " next door ....looked amazing....fine french food .

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00:10 Posted by Marielle Giai in Travel | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |


April in Paris ....

April in Paris....we had not visited the city of lights in many years...too many years. This time on our way to Provence we would stop over for a few days and re-discover Paris !


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First hours in Paris ...steps away from our hotel. Perfect spot for a picnic with all the amazing food bought at the local fromagerie, boucherie, traiteur, boulangerie and patisserie :)

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 Doesn't that look just like the cover of the book "French women don't get fat " !!!! I tried my hardest to get fat ....eating a couple of brioches and pains au chocolat every morning, a full sit down lunch at a Brasserie with a Baba au Rhum for desert , a couple of stops for macarons or cakes at some of our favorite patisseries in the afternoon and of course dinner ! 3 weeks later .... I only gained 2 pounds !!!

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We are freezing cold ...we need some calories ! Picking up some food at the local Fromagerie,  deli "Traiteur " Lenotre Patisserie for our picnic by the Eiffel Tower...


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03:11 Posted by Marielle Giai in Travel | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |


A special fragrance for a sweet Mom " Maman Cherie " by Fragonard .

DSCN0075 [1280x768].JPGThis light Eau de Toilet is the very essence of tenderness with delicate rose, fresh lily of the valley , soft magnolia, sparkling mandarin, warm musk and vanilla. The perfect gift for any mother, grand mother or mother to be :)

17:41 Posted by Marielle Giai | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |


Mum's gifts

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