A WHIRLWIND TRIP
After an incredible wedding in Germany, Peter and I took the TGV to Paris! Even though we only had a few days in the City of Lights, we certainly made the most of it!
- Take the TGV
- Download the app TheFork
- Book a session with Flytographer
Do you know about the TGV? I didn’t! TGV stands for Train à Grande Vitesse (high-speed train in French). The second fastest wheeled train in the world, the TGV cut our travel time from Rottweil, Germany to Paris down from 6.5 hours by car to 3.5 hours by train (2 hours on the TGV). On top of being quick, the cars were exceptionally comfortable – we didn’t even spring for first class! There was a bar car (v important) and we had a pretty impressive prepackaged cheese plate and the traditional French lager Kronenbourg 1664. Overall, I highly recommend the TGV, and train travel in Europe in general. We rolled into Paris refreshed, and ready to take on the city!
WHERE WE STAYED
The Hotel Napoleon Paris (40 Avenue de Friedland) was dazzling, I actually can’t overstate how much I loved staying here. When we stepped on to the curb in front of the hotel, a slight turn of the head revealed the Arc de Triomphe and the Champs-Élysées bustled mere steps behind us. The rooms felt lavish (but tasteful!), they are all decorated in their own unique interpretation of Empire style. Most importantly for me, the bathroom was updated and modern, and most importantly for Peter, there was air conditioning. We managed to hit a heatwave and temperatures were in the 90’s everyday!
To celebrate arriving in Paris, we enjoyed a bottle of Veuve Clicquot on the patio of the hotel’s restaurant, Le Bivouac. Until the day I die, I will remember Peter and I sipping champagne and enjoying foie gras as the Arc de Triomphe peeked out from behind the plane-trees.
WHAT WE ATE
We didn’t have a bad dining experience, so I will just describe one of each meal that really felt *French* to me.
- Breakfast – Carette (4 Place du Trocadéro et du 11 Novembre). Up early on a Wednesday, I felt like we were spies among the true Parisians. Beautiful, stylish people met over coffee before work, young club goers regrouped and rehashed the previous night before going home, and expats read newspapers in English but spoke perfect French. Peter and I shared a sliver pot of coffee, croissant and brioche as we sat the in the famous chairs and watched the day unfold in front of us.
- Lunch – Relais de L’Entrecote (15 Rue Marbeuf). Recommended to us by my cousins, this is the true home of Steak Frites. Your menu options are steak, medium or well done. If you choose wine, a red wine with a handwritten label is brought to the table. Without asking or being told to expect it, a green salad with the most outstanding mustard dressing appears. Upon ordering the steak (great choice!) hotel pans are brought out and the server plates your steak, fries and secret sauce table side. The remainder of your meal is kept warm until you signal that you are ready for seconds (and possibly thirds). Apparently, they serve dessert, but we wouldn’t know because we had to be rolled back to the hotel for a nap.
- Dinner – Bistrot Marloe (10 Rue d’Artois). If you are considering traveling to Paris, I definitely suggest downloading the app TheFork. This app is what OpenTable wishes it could be. Scrolling through the app, we were totally judging books by their covers when we stumbled across this gem! It was close, reasonable priced and beautiful. The luxe decor compliments the rich menu, which changes frequently. On top of being terribly stylish and serving the best steak Peter has ever had, the service was spectacular!
WHAT WE DID
It seems silly to brush off all Paris has to offer as “the things everyone does”, but the one thing we did that I would recommend booking a photography session with Flytographer. Just to be clear, I’M NOT GETTING PAID! I just really had such a great experience I want to tell everyone about it. We booked the 60 minute shoot with Krystal and she made us feel fabulous. Doing the photoshoot gave us a really unique way to experience Paris; we were at the Trocadéro at sunrise, and the sweeping terrace and views of the Eiffel Tower were ours alone. Being able to immerse ourselves in Paris didn’t end with the session though; because I knew we had great pictures coming we didn’t worry about taking more photos. In fact, for the rest of the trip, we only have pictures of food!
These pictures were taken by Krystal for Flytographer and myself. If you would like to save $25 on your first Flytographer session, please use this link! http://flytog.co/mQdTKSZ