When Jorge and I decided to fly to Germany in December to spend Christmas with my family in the snow we immediately thought we want to combine our Family Holidays with a city trip and have a weekend just for the two of us. As cliche as it is, Paris is both of our favorite European Capital.
Both of us have been to Paris multiple times, but never in Winter. And with the little to no pre-Christmas vibes that we have in Cape Town (30 degrees and mulled wine just doesn’t go together that nicely) I was beyond excited to spend the last days leading up to Christmas in this magical city.
As profound as it may sound. But one of the things I miss the most living in South Africa is “walking”. People just drive everywhere and no one really walked more than a few hundred meters (which also has something to do with safety ofc). So every time I touch the ground on European soil I am happy that I can walk around the cities again. At the end of our first day in Paris, my iPhone showed me that we walked more than 16 kilometers that day.
Jorge created the itinerary for our whole trip and pre-booked all of his favorite lunch and dinner spots for us. Other than our restaurant booking we did not really have a plan and just strolled around and got lost in the city. At the end of our first day, we ended up at Jardin de Tuileries and found ourselves in the middle of a Christmas market. We had our first “Glühwein” of the season and even came across an ice rink, where even spontaneously rented ice-skates. Ice-skating in the middle of Paris at night, between all the lights and the smell of Crepes and roasted Maroni in the crisp air, was definitely beyond magical.
where we ate and drank:
restaurants & bars.
L’Avenue is located on the famous Avenue Montaigne right across the Dior Store. Therefore it is made for people watching. We had Lunch there on Saturday and were sitting outside under the heathers, drinking wine and watching people doing some last minute Christmas shopping. I was not overly enthusiastic about the food (especially for the price point) but it’s definitely worth a visit for the atmosphere and Parisian vibe.
41 Avenue Montaigne, 75008 Paris
Café de Flore
One of the most well-known Cafés in Paris, and also one of the oldest coffee houses in the city. The perfect spot to sit outside, drink coffee (or in our case hot chocolate) and take in the bustling vibe of Saint-Germain.
172 Boulevard Saint-Germain, 75006 Paris
Ferdi is famous for their burgers and famous patrons such as Bella Hadid and Kendall Jenner. We tried the Burger, the Mac & Cheese and the green salad. And the food was so good! One of the best dinners I ever had in Paris. The interior is super kitsch but so Paris and super cozy and homey. It is a very small restaurant with only a limited amount of tables. So you really need to book in advance.
32 Rue du Mont Thabor, 75001 Paris
A Parisian classic. The luxury hotel is located right on the busy Rue Saint-Honoré and offers a stunning courtyard where you sit outside for dinner all year round (under umbrellas and heaters). The perfect location for a chic and fancy dinner date. A DJ plays, beautiful people are smoking and drinking red win. It doesn’t get more Parisian than this. Booking your table is required.
239-241 Rue Saint-Honoré, 75001 Paris
Pink Mama / No Entry
Pink Mama is a new hotspot in Paris. The restaurant is spread over four floors, with a stunning glass ceiling on top. If the beautiful interior is not convincing enough yet: apparently the have the best Pizza in town. They do not take reservations so you better don’t be in a rush and bring some time to wait for your table.
In the Basement of the Pink Mama building you will find, or not find, a speakeasy bar called “No Entry”. To enter you need to pass a door which literally says no entry and walk straight through the storage / cold room of the restaurant. Once you enter the bar you will find yourself in a pink velvet interior dream mixed with huge glass jars and canisters filled with wild flowers and herbs floating in transparent liquids. The cocktail menu is overwhelming but so so good. Be open for experimental cocktails and let the barmen walk you through it.
20bis Rue de Douai, 75009 Paris
One of the true speakeasy bars in Paris. Under the address you will only find a pizzeria by the name of “Da Vito”. To enter the bar you you have to walk through the fridge door of the pizzeria. Not only the decor is very 1920’s but also the glassware and outfits of the bar men. As soon as you enter the bar you feel like you just left 2019 behind you ( in the pizzeria).
5 Rue Sedaine, 75011 Paris, Frankreich