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June 2010
un mariage de reve à paris
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Dear Friend,

Part of the romance of the beautiful city of Paris is whiling away your time here in a café with a book. (Somehow, a café au lait and a Kindle does not have the same ring!). For those who still love the printed word, here’s a short guide to the best Parisian bookstores.

Shakespeare and Co.Facing Notre Dame on the Left Bank, this storied shop has been a real gold mine for generations in search of rare English published books. It's a place to visit in and of itself, but also to discuss, to meet with others, to buy and sell. It’s a real slice of the Left Bank.


W.H. Smith on rue de Rivoli

W.H. Smith on rue de Rivoli is vast and offers a large choice from the most recent bestsellers to a good section on language teaching methods, tourist guides and children’s books. Brentano's, which dates from 1895 on the Avenue de l’Opera, was closed for a few months but has reopened offering books, guide books, paintings, stationery and more. The Village Voice on rue Princesse is well known among the Parisian American community for the readings given there several times a month.

The banks of the Seine

Last but not least, the banks of the Seine are always worth a wander through the stalls of the “bouqinistes”. English language books are more rare, here, but the picturesque stalls crowded with first editions mixed in with well-thumbed paperbacks are a delight.

The water show "Les Grandes Eaux"

At Versailles, the water show "Les Grandes Eaux", is an experience that everyone should enjoy at least once in a lifetime. An argument could be made that draining the swamp around the chateau was at least as much of an achievement as building this Louis XIV masterpiece. It took years to bring water from the Seine river and from every possible brook in the neighborhood. A project supposed to bring water from the Eure in Maintenon caused thousands of deaths and never succeeded, but today offers the unusual sight of the ruins of the aquaduct to the golfers and strollers in the parc of the Chateau of Maintenon.

Every year the "Grandes Eaux" of Versailles increase in popularity (1 million visitors last year). 35 kilometers of pipes running underground spray water in 55 different fountains. It takes place every weekend till fall in the morning from 11am to 12am, and from 3:30 – 5pm. Pieces of music of Rameau and Lully accompany the water festival: pure enchantment. Then, starting on June 19th, by 9pm, laser light shows and gigantic flames will turn this "Grandes Eaux" into a stunning night attraction.

The Latest Exhibitions

Yves Saint Laurent at the Petit Palais, with objects, pictures of famous photographers and of course dresses for the YSL foundation, a must to understand how this artist has revolutionized fashion, by adapting men’s clothes to women’s style.

Edward Munch at the Pinacotheque of Paris, focusing on his less well known colorist work. Till July 18th.

Lucien Freud, maybe the most expansive British living artist. Pompidou Center, this exhibition will end on July 19th.

Our Parisian restaurant selections this month:

Les Bouquinistes – Guy Savoy’s elegant homage to the booksellers, is at 53, quai des Augustins

Lunch with children: try the restaurant on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower. If your legs can take it, enjoy coming down to the ground floor via the stair case. It’s a great way to enjoy the architecture and a good way to tire out the kids!

Venturing Outside the City of Lights

- Looking for a new diversion that is not too far from the city? Le Puy de Fou is an outstanding theme park with performances throughout the day of falconry, jousting, magic and music, and boasts atmospheric reconstructions of a Norman fort, a medieval town and an 18th-century village. On some evenings you can enjoy a splendid Son et Lumière show, regarded as the best sound-and-light show in Europe in which literally 1,000 local actors take part dramatizing the history of the Vendee province.

- The Villa Lescure is a charming accommodation choice close to the park – only 4 suites with an 18th century ambience. Even classier is the Chateau Boisnard
www.chateau-boisniard.com/packpuydufou.php

- Excellent stops on the way include Chartres and Angers, and of course, PML will be happy to drive you there and back!

A Short Selection of Events Around Europe :

- London : Carnaby Street celebrating her 50's and still swinging.

- Henry Moore exhibition at the Tate Gallery. The best years of this British artist despite his depression, a song to beauty. www.tate.org.uk

- Gauguin in Amsterdam, www.vangoghmuseum.nl, a reconstitution of the exhibition of Paris world fair exhibition of 1889 of what will be become the Pont-Aven group.

 

Gastronomy in Alsace

- L’Arnsbourg à Baerenthal 18 Untermuhlthal 57230 Baerenthal (at the border of Alsace/Lorraine) : superb spot in the middle of the forest, very quiet . Excellent cooking , normally less than one hour drive from Strasbourg.
Ttel : +33(0)3.87.06.50.85.

- Le Crocodile in Strasbourg : a former 3 Michelin stars restaurant sold by Emile Jung, is now in the “espoirs” category (promising restaurants category). Tél. : +33(0)3.88.32.13.02

- Le Buerehiesel 4 parc de l’Orangerie 67000 Strasbourg : Papa Antoine Westermann had given the restaurant to his son. This place also features in the “espoirs” category of the Michelin guide.
Tel. : +33(0)3.88.45.56.65.

- Other good news The Auberge de l'Ill in Ilhauersern is still there (near Colmar and its Bugatti Museum). The Haerberlin family place, one of the most impressive and talented restaurants and inns I have ever been.
Tel : +33(0)3.89.71.89.00

 

And as always, if you need a chauffeured car to get you there, you know whom to ask. For other suggestions in Paris, around France or elsewhere in Europe,

please email us at pml@pmlparis.com

we are always pleased to help.

 
Connect to me on Linked In: www.linkedin.com/in/pierremarclambert

If you are looking for a terrace in the sun, then the following are all good choices:

- Go ritzy, try the Plaza Athénée,run by world famous chef Alain Ducasse.

- Something intimate : try to get one of the lovely tables on the patio of l'Hotel, rue des Beaux Arts

- For the fashion crowd, book at the new Armani court yard on Boulevard Saint Germain.

- And to demonstrate that you really know the best spots in Paris, take your friends for lunch at Le Petit Palais, an excellent value and only a few steps from the Museum’s fabulous collection and from the Saint Laurent exhibition.

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