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Considered a "biggie" in jazz circles, this club has become one of Paris' best-known jazz venues thanks to performances by exceptional musicians like Paolo Fresu, Philippe Catherine and Steve Swallow. As in most jazz clubs, concerts happen in three sets, culminating in an improvised jam session often featuring special guests seemingly plucked from the crowd; it is a heaven for jazz fans. The club's cozy atmosphere and warm decor provide the perfect setting for some sizzling hot jazz. Admission prices vary according to the performers.
This caveau is one of the most popular entertainment places in Paris. Located near the Sorbonne, the place has been the dance paradise for generations of students and other visitors for more than 50 years. The most famous and prestigious American and European jazzmen have played here, including Maxim Saury. On two floors, happy tourists and students dance until the next morning.
The popularity of Aux Bains Montorgueil is largely due to word-of-mouth publicity and as a result of the numerous journalists who have written about the hammam (bathhouse). It may be hard to locate on Rue Montorgueil; however, once at their doorstep, patrons are transported into a world reminiscent of a Middle Eastern riad (traditional Moroccan home), where the calligraphic love poem in Arabic and the gold encrusted mosaic embraces you in opulence. The spa has steam baths, exfoliation treatments, two massage salons and a cold water pool with helpful staff catering to every desire. Both fruit and mint tea are served and if it's a couples package, expect champagne and tea cakes. Clearly, it's not easy to get in, so make sure you have confirmed reservations.
The Jardin des Tuileries was commissioned by Queen Catherine de Médicis and created in 1564 as the gardens adorning the Tuileries Palace. After the French Revolution, the park was opened to the public and has been a favorite spot for romantic walks and family outings ever since. The beautiful garden spreads out from the Louvre to Place de la Concorde. A sculpture garden called Le Grand Couvert houses some very famous sculptures nestled between the park's mature trees. With its beautiful flowerbeds and a gorgeous terrace that overlooks the Seine, the garden is an ideal place to take a stroll with your sweetheart or enjoy a picnic with friends.
A tour beginning at Parc André Citroën, Ballon de Paris offers a unique experience while visiting the city. Gaining up to 150 meters (490 feet) in elevation during the tour, the 32-by-22-meter (104-by-72-foot) hot-air balloon filled with helium provides passengers with a spectacular view of the city's main attractions, from the Eiffel Tower to the Seine River and Montparnasse Tower. Transporting up to 150 people, it will bring joy and excitement to the whole family.
The largest park in Paris was originally a forest named Vilcena which surrounded Lutèce (the Gaul name for Paris) and became the property of the King in the 11th Century. Following its destruction during the Revolution, the army installed themselves here in 1794. It was only in 1857 that Napoleon III decided to transform it into an English-style park and it took three years of work. Today, it looks very much the way it did after the renovations: vast lawns, charming paths and a stunning network of waterfalls, islands and pools. The three lakes, Minimes, Saint Mandé and Gravelle were put in at this time. When the city of Paris took over the park in 1860, they added the lac de Daumesnil. Visitors can rent boats on the lakes, explore the tropical garden, the Buddhist and Tibetan temples and visit the Musée des Arts Africains et Océaniens.
The Bois de Boulogne stretches over 863 hectares (2132 acres). It was named after the sanctuary Notre-Dame de Boulogne le Petit under the reign of Philippe IV, who was known as Philippe le Bel. The park was then partly converted to a royal hunting ground before being redesigned to include wide alleyways, inviting elegant Parisians to take a stroll. Lovers can peddle across lakes in rented boats, sports enthusiasts can race with rented bikes, nature lovers can fish for fun and kids can play on the expansive playgrounds; there is truly something for everyone at this magnificent park. Complete with a swimming pool, cafés and restaurants, it is a great place to spend an entire day with friends and family.