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The Maison des Contes et des Histoires welcomes children and adults to discover the arts of storytelling, writing, and illustration. The gallery hosts temporary exhibits of original illustrations from children's books, with a collection of old books accompanying each exhibit for its duration (usually around two months). Storytelling sessions for individuals and groups relate to the theme of the current exhibit, and activities (for children over two) and workshops for adults complete the picture. Schools, nurseries, community centers, and birthday parties make frequent appearances at the Maison des Contes et des Histoires.
This dimly lit, subterranean museum of magic offers many things to bewitch a young mind. But while Musée de la Magie is filled with numerous interesting curios and props that track the history of magic from the 18th Century to the present (think magic wands and early Ouija boards), children will doubtless be primarily intrigued by the interactive games, optical illusions and other hands-on "magic" items that are scattered throughout the museum. In addition, a magic show, performed several times daily, is included in the price of the ticket. Don't miss it: the kids will love it, and so will you.
Le Bonbon au Palais was launched in 2009, replete with an air of nostalgia. Candy connoisseur and curator of fine confections, Georges Marquès, owns this venture that aims to reinvent the sweets industry. Numerous apothecary jars of old-fashioned sweet treats are laid out in an ambiance that is reminiscent of a 1950s classroom. Some of the best artisans and confectioners from across France are represented in the array of candies, chocolates, fruit jellies, calissons and bonbons showcased. Marvel at the vibrant and wonderful display and sample a varied range of flavors and textures that come with a history lesson from Georges.
This recently renovated four-star hotel is situated just minutes from the celebrated Café de Flore and Les Deux Magots, in St-Germain-des-Prés. You will find stone walls and wooden floors in the bar and sitting area, and an elegant fireplace in the pleasant library. Three very different colors that characterize the rooms: Orange, Blue, and Green, all catered to insure you have the most pleasant stay possible. Whatever the style, all the rooms are spacious, comfortable and have excellent bathrooms. In the basement, there is a salon with leather chairs and sofas, which serves as a breakfast room in the morning and as a jazz club at night.
For a century and counting, Vilac have been at the forefront of the gaming industry. With over five outlets in Japan, their flagship Parisian boutique features an exciting array of toys and board games that cater to newborns, toddlers over the age of five, and everything in between. They specialize in wooden toys, painstakingly assembled by hand at the very workshop where it all began. The traditional Jura technique involves polishing, lacquering and printing. The creative forces behind the original designs are Keith Haring, Nathalie Lété and Yoshitomo Nara, among a host of collaborative artists. In addition to its shops, it retails its unique collection at several department stores.
If you're planning to take your little one to JouéClub, be warned: you will be introducing your child to a world of addiction! This is a toy store that has every single thing children love to play with, and convincing them to leave is a Herculean task indeed. This treasure trove of toys is divided into 12 major sections, among which wooden toys, educational games, dolls, board games and construction toys are only a few. For once, you will be the one struggling to keep up as your children gleefully run from one section to the next!
Passage des Princes is a covered passageway linking Rue Richelieu to Boulevard des Italiens in the 2nd arrondissement of Paris. It is 80 meters (263 feet) long and was inaugurated in 1860 under the name of Passage Mirès. It was the last covered alley built in Paris; Baron Haussmann made this decision, as he was responsible for the transformations and renovations of Paris during the Second Empire. Following a real estate scheme, the passageway was destroyed in 1985 and rebuilt identically, several original elements of decoration were reused. Since 2002, it has had one main theme: there are mainly toy shops in the Passage des Princes.
Popular with the English aristocracy and with Middle Eastern visitors, this 19th-century hotel offers opulence and elegance on a grand scale. Adorned with artwork and antiques, the spacious and lavishly decorated bedrooms simply ooze luxury. Afternoon jazz concerts take place in the conservatory, a delightful spot for afternoon tea, and the hotel restaurant features in the gourmet bible, Michelin Guide. Rooms overlooking the Tuileries Gardens need to be booked well in advance.
This charming boutique hotel has gorgeous views of the pristine Saint Martin Channel. Le Citizen Hotel offers modern and hip accommodations for those looking to stay in style. Guest rooms are funky and bright with plenty of natural light streaming through floor to ceiling windows. Pops of color accentuate the sparsely decorated rooms, while high-tech amenities allow for tech-savvy guests to stay up to date.
The Victoria Palace Hotel is located 250 metres from the 18th century Rue du Cherche-Midi and 750 metres from both Montparnasse Train Station and Le Bon Marché Department Store. Offering traditional French décor, this hotel also provides free WiFi throughout the property. Victoria Palace Hotel offers spacious soundproofed rooms with a desk and a flat-screen TV and some room feature a seating area. Each air-conditioned room or suite has period décor and includes a private bathroom decorated in marble with a bath. A laptop safe is also available in some rooms. Bathrobes, slippers and free toiletries are provided. A buffet breakfast is served every morning in the breakfast room at Victoria Palace Hotel but guests can also have a continental breakfast in the privacy of their room. Guests can enjoy a drink in the bar while reading the newspapers. A meeting room is available on site and both concierge and business centre services can be provided. A unique touch is the neighbourhood guides featuring local markets, craftsmen and a plethora of independent shops and artisans which visitors might discover in the area. A limousine pick-up service from the airport or train station is available upon request. The Victoria Palace also provides a tour desk and ticket service at the 24-hour reception. The Luxembourg Gardens are 850 metres away. The Saint-Germain-des-Prés neighbourhood can be found 1 km from the property while Musée d’Orsay is 1.9 km away. Orly Aiport can be reached within 14.5 km.
Located on rue d'Amsterdam in the 9th arrondissement of Paris, La Grande Récré is a part of a toy store chain founded in 1977. Lead by the Grunberg family, this is a international brand that has 211 stores just in France and over 30 in 4 European countries. Needless to say it is always swarming with kids and buzzing with energy. Boasting of over a thousand type of toys from different brands, La Grande Récré is a good place for birthday and Christmas shopping.
Each summer, Parisians and tourists can enjoy the sand, palm trees, and beach umbrellas installed along the banks of the Seine - but the river is much too murky and dirty for swimming. Enter Piscine Joséphine Baker to the rescue. The public pool, which can be found in the 13th arrondissement on a boat floating on the Seine, makes it nearly possible to really swim in the river. The boat boasts a retractable roof, swimming and wading pools, a sauna and hot tub, and plenty of deck space for sunbathing.