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Paris. Our kind of place to live and work.

The Promotion of Crete as tourist destination was our reason for visiting Paris. We chose a hotel at 1er Arrondissement, to have freedom of movement for sightseeing, when not busy. As soon as we arrived, we left our luggage and rushed out to take our first fix of Paris in the spring.

First coffee was at Les Deux Magots, in Place Saint-Germain des Pré, served with the famous macaron Ispahan and pâte feuilletée. At Les Deux Magots café we tried to live some of the life of Picasso, Prévert, Hemingway, Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir. This was the place they used to meet and get inspired.  Then we strolled along the Seine and sat for dinner at Le Fumoir, one of the oldest restaurants of 1er Arrondissement, right opposite the Louvre. Its dishes were sophisticated, refined and very expensive. We paid €50 each. After dinner, we went outdoors to enjoy our wine with a fine Cohiba.

When we returned to our room we were knackered. Our hotel had a great location but its breakfast was very poor. So we went on a mission for the ideal place for our petit déjeuner. Not far, opposite the hotel to be exact, we discovered Eric Kayser. An assortment of viennoiseries, brioche and authentic French patisseries all lay there in a display of taste.

But Paris can’t be just about work. Therefore we took the road to Monmartre. Since we wanted to give our trip an educational character, we visited Musée de Montmartre, perhaps the most charming museum in the city, surrounded by the Renoir Gardens. There, we became part of a theatre event. The French were celebrating the day of Monmartre. We passed through all the painters, bought a couple of paintings and enjoyed our champagne in the sun. We rode the funiculaire to go back and returned to the room for a little rest. But not before one more visit to Eric Kayser for a tasty little bite.  Rested and refreshed, we headed towards Saint Paul village in Le Marais, early in the evening. A very picturesque place in Paris, all pedestrian walk, where we discovered some exquisite items at the local antique shops and the small boutiques. Absolute French style!

We ended up at Place des Vosges, resting on the grass at the middle of the square. We were thoroughly impressed by the unique 17th century architecture of the buildings around. The next time we come, just for leisure, we’re going to stay at the Pavillon de la Reine, a historical building above the arches of the square.  For our evening aperitif, we chose Saint Regis, at the Ile Saint Louis. Corner table, business talk and dry martini. All tables full. It seems the French enjoy their evenings after work.  The next day, after we took our breakfast at our local place, we returned to the hotel for some last touches on the event and paid a visit to the restaurant hosting it, to make sure everything was in order.

Indeed, everything was. Which then allowed us to go to the Centre de Pompidou at Rue Βeaubourg. We saw Le Corbusier and enjoyed the charming view of a clouded city from the café. On the horizon, the Eiffel Tower.

It was early in the evening when we decided to go for a walk to Quartier Latin, at Madeleine, for the most delicious chocolat chaud a l’ ancienne  at Café Madeleine.

Time to go back to the hotel. Not without curiosity, we observed a massive queue outside a Japanese restaurant, from our balcony. We waited until it thinned out and then visited Sanukiya,  probably the most gastronomically interesting discovery in Paris. It’s a small but ever so popular restaurant with an amazing cuisine. We were definitely compensated for our wait in the balcony.

Not wanting to waste a minute, we left right after dinner for the Ile de la Cité. Sat at Paul’s, drank eau de vie au poire and enjoyed the perfect baba au rhum. We dreamed of a sweet small apartment at the main square of Ile de la Cité , when we retire.

The next day was the day of the event. Since it wasn’t until the evening and everything was ready, we had the rest of the day to do as we pleased. We went to Sorbonne for a quick coffee and went from there to the Jardin du Luxembourg. They were endless, incredibly green and with the most comfortable, ideal for selfies benches! At the Musée de Luxembourg  we saw a very interesting exhibition about the English dynasty of the Tudors. Learned all about their genealogical tree and their darkest secrets in marriage and power.

Absolute French style!


Back to the hotel for a little rest and some beauty treatment. Then took a taxi to Mavrommatis Restaurant at Quartier Latin, which would host the journalists and tour operators for the promotion of Crete’s tourist product. Our guests made Cretan dakos themselves! There was an impeccable service and the highest level of professionalism. The city of light is strongly suggested to everyone who wants to host an event. And there we had it; one more promotion for Crete ended in the most successful way. The next morning we took the train to Brussels from Gare du Nord. But not before bidding adieu or rather au revoir by dipping our tongues and noses inside one last aromatic Parisian coffee at the  Café de la Paix, in Opera.