A Day In Paris: Picasson Museum, Merci Cafe

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Life in Paris isn’t all crepes and picturesque walks along the Seine. But sometimes they are, and I think it’s fun to share with all of you darlings what one of the fun outing days of my life looks like! This time the feature was the Picasso Museum along with some other beautiful spots in Paris.

We started off in the 3rd Arrondissement, which is the most “hipster” spot I’ve found in Paris (so far). There are lots of little shops, chic cafes and art shops and galleries. If you’re looking for a more low key artist vibe while in Paris this is the spot to head to.

Our first stop (because rule #1 is never go to a museum hungry) was a sweet little cafe located near the Picasso Museum named Royal Bar. This little cafe was the quintessential Parisian experience. It was filled with art and made me feel like I had been transported back to the Paris of Hemingway. The tea was lovely (although, fair warning – when you order you’re ordering a pot, not a cup, so it’s a bit more expensive) and the man working there gave us some of the best lemon square type deserts I’ve ever had. It was sublime.

After we had had some caffeine and some little desserts we headed over to see Picasso, because if you’re in Paris and don’t see Picasso what are you even doing with your life? It has kind of become ridiculous how many original pieces of classical art I’ve seen since living in Europe. It’s like my history books have jumped off of the pages, and it’s pretty incredible. Picasso hasn’t really been a favorite of mine, in the past, but I’m a strong believer that seeing work by “The Masters” makes an artist more rounded.

The museum was such a beautiful building, I loved being able to see the amazing architecture and I fell in love with the floors. Yes, the floors. There’s something about black and white checkered floors that will get me every time.

After we’d tipped our hats to Picasso, Cezanne and Matisse we headed over to walk along the shops surrounding. We found this absolutely beautiful shop called Papier Tigre. I loved the geometric feel of their designs and the minimalism. If I wasn’t a broke expat I would have bought the whole store.

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Our next stop was for some yummy drinks and the best wall decoration any place can have – books! This was actually our second time at this Merci cafe because the first time we went we made the mistake of going on a Saturday. In case you don’t know about Paris, some of the best advice I have for actually getting into places is to not go on Saturdays. Go any other day of the week, but Saturday is the “going out” day (while Sunday is more for staying in with family) in France. My partner in crime ordered a Pear flavored alcohol and I grabbed a banana, apple and kiwi smoothy which was just so good (even though it sounds awkward). It seemed fitting to end our day with a such a lovely cafe. Our day was so lovely and I love finding new spots that make me feel a little less like a stranger in Paris.

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Review: Merci Cafe

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This cafe is one of the most hipster cool experience you’ll find (Paris or otherwise) while begin a great cafe, it’s also filled wall to wall with used books. In addition to the antlers hanging on the walls, there are also vintage chandeliers that are just lovely. There is also a lovely store adjoining that has everything for your hipster needs ( no really, you’ll understand when you walk in).

It took us a couple of times to get into this cafe because the first time we tried to go it was a Saturday – which was a mistake in the first place. In fact, I would advise staying away from such establishments on Saturdays in general. Saturdays are the French “go out-hang out” days, so you’ll probably find yourself packed in a place if you do. Sundays, in contrast are a great day to go out (especially early) because most French people stay in with their families on Sundays, or do things that don’t involve going out (unless it’s to a park or something).

Overall the experience was great and our servers were just the nicest.

Ordered: Banana, Apple and Kiwi smoothy (so good!)

Where: 111 Boulevard Beaumarchais 73003 Paris, France

Went: Friday, March 6th, 2015 around 1pm

Wifi: Unknown. I was enjoying myself so much that I forgot to check.

5star1

 

 

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Review: Royal Bar

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This little darling cafe feels like you’ve passed back through time when you walk through the doors. While feeling like I should have been writing the next great American novel about the war torn past I never had, I enjoyed a pot of the most delightful tea and nibbled on lemon squares that were out of this world.

The space is small and intimate, so I can imagine it could get crowded quite easily during rush hours, but when we went it was just simply us, one older gentleman and the server – absolute bliss.

Ordered: Black Tea, Lemon dessert

Where: 19 rue du Parc Royal 75003 Paris, France (Marais Nord, 3ème, Marais)

Went: Friday, March 6th, 2015 around 10am

Wifi: Nope. In fact there’s a sign that says to leave your computer

5star1

Café Review: Coutume

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I went to this café called Coutume last week and I really loved the experience! I thought I would let people (especially English speakers) know about it, because there have been a lot of less than desirable experiences with Paris establishments, so this one really stood out! First off – the details:

When: February 13th, 2015 – We went early in the morning, around 10:30am.

Who: With two other friends (One American, One English)

So, we walked into this cafe not knowing what to expect, and the thing that I noticed right away was that people were speaking English! In fact, ALL the baristas were speaking English! If you’ve been to Paris before, you’ll understand what a phenomena this is.

We were immediately greeted, seated and chose our drinks. I later got breakfast too – I will say, per usual “pancakes” aren’t really pancakes, more compact and dense, but still good. The overall atmosphere reminded me a lot of Seattle in that it was edgy, relaxed, artistic, earthy and everything a café should be (in my opinion, of course).

Our baristas were cheeky, hilarious and so nice! They gave us such a fun experience and helped us find things on the menu etc. Overall, such a great experience!

Oh, and they have WIFI (again, if you’ve been to Paris – not the same as in the U.S.)!! 5star1