PALAIS GALLIERA – THE PARIS MUSEUM OF FASHION

Palais Galliera in its garden setting. Photo, Paris + Plus

A stone’s throw from some of the most prestigious haute couture houses and designer boutiques in the city, the Musée de la Mode de la Ville de Paris is housed in the Italian Renaissance-inspired Palais Galliera.  The museum preserves some of the richest collections in the world, estimated at around 200,000 items of clothing, accessories, photographs, drawings and more.  Tracing the evolution of fashion over more than 300 years, these extraordinary collections are a window into the dress codes of France from the 18th century to the present day, and are regularly accessed for numerous exhibitions in France and other countries.

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THE TROCADERO – PANORAMIC VIEWS, BEAUTIFUL GARDENS, FOUR MAJOR CULTURAL INSTITUTIONS, AND A SUPRISING SECRET

The vast Palais de Chaillot complex at the Trocadero. Photo, famouswonders

Situated on the opposite side of the Seine from the Eiffel Tower, the Trocadéro is well and truly on the must-visit list for offering the best view of the most recognisable monument in Paris.  It is also home to beautiful gardens, ornamental ponds and fountains that stretch down to the river, as well as the richness of the Palais de Chaillot, the Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine, and the Musée de la Marine—although this is currently closed for massive renovations during 2022.  As we discussed in the last blog, the chic and very upmarket village of Passy and its tiny cemetery, the final resting place of numerous artists and other notables, lies just behind the Trocadéro.  However, there is one fascinating secret about the Trocadéro that only came to light a few years ago, which I’ll look at in this story.

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PASSY – WHERE QUIET VILLAGE CHARM MEETS CULTURE & LUXURY

An Art Nouveau residential building in Passy Photo, branipick

The 16th arrondissement of Paris is best known to visitors for its great landmarks and museums, from the Musée Marmottan-Monet, the Palais Galliera and Musée Guimet, to the Place de la Trocadero and the Palais Chaillot,  affording dramatic views of the Eiffel Tower on the opposite bank of the Seine.  But the 16th also has corners of quiet, residential areas that feel worlds away from the big-ticket attractions and the bustle of the city.  The Passy neighbourhood is one such place.  With quiet streets lined with handsome residential buildings, small museums, smart boutiques, pleasant market streets abuzz with top quality fresh produce, patisseries, leafy squares and parks, Passy has a quiet, understated charm that makes it one of the most desirable neighbourhoods in Paris.

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RUE OBERKAMPF – A VIBRANT PARISIAN NEIGHBOURHOOD

Cirque d’Hiver. Photo, cirquedhiver

Beyond the iconic Place de la Republique—where Parisians gathered in their thousands after the 2015 attacks on their city—is a fascinating network of streets crammed with some of the city’s hippest venues, chic bars, great bistros, old craft workshops and up-and-coming designer boutiques.  In Paris’ 11th arrondissement, rue Oberkampf and the streets around it offer an interesting mix of all of these, plus an increasing number of high-end food shops and any number of art galleries.  Located between Le Marais and Menilmontant, this is a young, dynamic district that has become one of the capital’s liveliest areas.  It’s a neighbourhood that is still incredibly local and not bombarded by tourists trying to take the perfect selfie in front of a great monument!

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TWO SECRET VILLAGES IN PARIS

La Butte aux Cailles is a delightful location for a quiet stroll. Photo, lamariniereenvoyage

If you’ve been to Paris a few times, no doubt you’ve taken in the big, headline monuments and sites such as the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, Louvre, walked along the Champs Elysees and shopped ’til you dropped in Galeries Lafayette.  These iconic places are internationally famous for a very good reason, but for your next visit, I’d like to suggest some hidden little pockets to explore that most likely you’ve never heard of.  There are a number of charming little havens of tranquility that were once small communities in their own right, but have since been absorbed into the fabric of one of the most densely populated cities on the planet.  Such little gems are what really make Paris the unique, much-loved city that it is today.

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