A high-class restaurant on the world's most famous avenue, Ladurée (founded in 1862) also boasts a bakery. You can try the famous “macarons” (moist jam-filled cookies), a specialty of this establishment, or enjoy the raw and cooked vegetable salad along with a variable of other dishes served for lunch and dinner.
Despite the invasion of big name stores such as Gap, Zara, and H&M, the flagship branch of Galeries Lafayette, along with nearby Printemps, has remained one of the last bastions of Parisian chic. Built in 1894, this shoppers' paradise has continually reinvented itself and kept customers coming back. The resplendent main hall has an impressive array of perfumes, accessories and other products. The department store stocks all the best designer labels and also has its own deluxe grocery counter, restaurants, a travel agency, fashion shows, Internet access and more. Its incredible Christmas window displays are a Parisian institution.
The world's biggest flea market welcomes 200,000 visitors each weekend. You name it and this place will have it: furniture, pictures, new and second-hand clothes, all at rock-bottom prices (especially if you're a dab hand at haggling). There's a jovial fairground atmosphere with the aroma of food wafting around and people crowding round the stalls, hoping to pick up a 1970s leather jacket or a rare Louis XV chest of drawers. Make sure you have cash on you, as stallholders seldom accept credit cards and the nearest available cash machine is always lined out.
With baking in his genes and a lifetime of experience, it's no surprise that Pierre Hermé's eponymous venture has won him many accolades. From French Pastry Chef Of The Year to Presidential honors, the patisserie is at the forefront of 21st Century pastry making. He is most famous for his colorful macarons, which must be tried when in the city. Cakes, cookies, candied dried fruits and other sweets are sold in inventive flavors like balsamic vinegar, olives and cheese. A designer of all things sweet, indulge in his line of seasonal confectionery at this shop.
This department store is right inside a heritage monument, and ladies will go crazy for the collection of clothes, jewelry and other accessories on display. The most famous and trendiest brands have a corner at Printemps: Chanel, Dior, Gucci, YSL, Stella McCartney, and Louis Vuitton. The fourth floor is devoted to promoting new designers such as Zadig & Voltaire, Isabelle Marrant and Vanessa Bruno. For men, there is a separate six-floor section. For your home, you will find home furnishings, china and silverware, and anything else you could think of for your wedding registry. Speaking of weddings, visit the wedding salon to try on your future bridal gown. If you care to indulge in some post-shopping pampering, Printemps even houses its own salon and spa. What else could Printemps possibly offer? A fashion show every Thursday! Gastronomes also have the opportunity to fill their baskets with delicacies at Printemps Gourmet-take a break in the restaurant or café before embarking on one more fix of Parisian fashion.
Craving a bit of outlet shopping? La Vallée Village, with its meticulously manicured storefronts and spacious walkways, is a sophisticated bargain hunter's dream. Located in the up-and-coming community of Marne-La-Vallée, the shops exemplify the spirit of the region.
Blancpain, an 18th-century company that was revived in 1983, creates timepieces that elevate the watch from a time-telling instrument to a work of art. This boutique provides an elegant setting for the purchase of these rare products. The vintage furniture, antiques, and classical interiors complement the sophisticated products on offer. If you visit this place, remember to ask for "The 1735", which features 740 components. Only a few of these are available worldwide, so if you manage to buy one, remember you are in the company of a distinguished few.
Royalty, business tycoons and movie stars all come here to splurge on jewelry and timepieces. The late Harry Winston, a native New Yorker, is still known as 'The King of Diamonds', and the business empire he founded has an international reputation. High profile celebrities are known to "borrow" designs when they attend the Oscars each year, and even the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Louvre have displayed Winston's exclusively crafted works. The stores, or "salons" as they are called, maintain a high profile, and this one in Paris is no exception. You can expect impeccable service, and to be set back by several thousand dollars if you decide to secure one of the exquisite pieces on offer.
Supporting Paris' long-standing association with perfumes, Nicolaï is a sensory paradise created by Patricia de Nicolaï and her husband, Jean-Louis Michau in 1989. Manufactured by the company itself, the store showcases a diverse and unique collection of fragrances for women as well as men. You could also pick up beautiful lamps and scented oils from the store. Top notch fragrances at affordable prices is what the store strives for and that's exactly what you get!
Located in the district of Notre-Dame de Lorette, the shop, Le Sourire Multicolore, is specialized in fair trade: you will find ethical clothing and fair-trade objects. All T-shirts and lingerie are made from organic cotton; sweaters are made of cashmere or wool; Bolivian gloves, hats and scarves are hand-knitted. Available brands are: Ethos, Idéo, Herbe Rouge, Peau Ethique and more. To decorate your house, you will find numerous pieces, many of which are made from recycled materials (candle holders, candlesticks, lanterns). Le Sourire Multicolore sells handbags as well as handcrafted jewelry (from Madagascar for example) made out of grain, horns, mother-of-pearl, pearls, vegetable ivory, or even origami.
Women, get ready to be flattered by the selection of trendy designs and fashionable clothes at the flagship store of renowned designer Martin Grant. This complete apparel store is a fad amongst the fashionistas who love the selection of clothes that changes according to the seasons. Be it a fashionable high-waisted pants or a wedding outfit, the shop offers a unique shopping experience.
If you are looking to shop for fine jewelry, then head to the store of the world renowned designer Lorenz Baumer. Located on Place Vendome, this store has a collection of designer jewelry, watches and table-top lifestyle products studded with precious jewels. Whether it's an expensive diamond-studded ring or precious stone-studded watch, the store's inventory comprises something for everyone.