by Kasey Caminiti | September 27, 2021 1:07 pm
A weekend in Paris can be a beautiful whirlwind of culture, art, food, romance and more. Whether you are heading to the City of Lights for Paris Fashion Week this year or are planning an impromptu Parisian vacation, we have the ultimate travel guide for you. From stylish hotels to the best restaurants in Paris, we have done the “work” for you so you can enjoy the most perfect weekend in Paris. With the ever-changing COVID protocols, we recommend flying with French bee airline to ensure you have a safe and healthy travel experience to Paris. French bee offers a detailed and up-to-date outline of the entry requirements for the United States and France on the French bee website, which for the U.S. includes having a negative PCR or antigen test result, taken no more than three days before departure. Luckily, travelers are able to take a PCR test at the testing center at Paris-Orly airport. Pro tip: Give yourself at least three hours before your departure time to take the test, wait for results and proceed to security.
Aside from the safety measures, French bee offers a relaxed flight experience in their Premium Class, complete with comfortable seats, robust entertainment options and a delicious culinary menu. The knowledgable in-flight French bee crew will ensure your flight is as smooth as possible with snacks, champagne and even tips for your travels! Chloé Abidos, a French bee flight crew member offered her best packing tip for a weekend in Paris: “Visualize your outfits and bring travel pouches to organize your daily attire, shoes, and swimwear/under garments. Pack only one jacket and create different outfits from day to night.”
Below, find our complete guide to the best hotels, restaurants and activities to check out in Paris after flying with French bee .
Maison Mère Hotel: This newly opened boutique hotel located in the 9th arrondissement is a haven for Instagrammable moments. The chic decor feels like the inside of a vintage shop, jewel box and mid-century modern oasis all wrapped in one. You’ll be nestled on a side street where you’ll find cozy coffee shops and wine bars nearby. Take a short walk to the bustling Rue La Fayette where you can find a more vibrant shopping and dining scene. This hotel is ideal for those looking for luxury accommodations with a more off-the-beaten path locale. Rooms feature high-tech lighting and sound systems for a seriously dreamy sleep, an interactive tablet to plan your stay, request or pause house cleaning (forget those old school do not disturb door hangers) and an impressive blow dryer because let’s face it, your Dyson hair dryer might not make the packing list for a weekend getaway. Hair tip: Charge your Dyson Corrale before traveling and enjoy outlet-free hair styling while abroad!
InterContinental Paris le Grand: For a five-star, luxury experience, a stay at the landmark InterContinental Paris le Grand will certainly exceed your expectations. With an opulent style, a rich history and unbelievable location overlooking the iconic Palais Garnier, this hotel is a perfect home base for a weekend in Paris. Interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon recently updated the hotel’s spacious rooms and suites with custom-made furniture for a bespoke aesthetic coupled with luxury amenities to perfect your stay. If you can, be sure to take a look at the recently restored Salon Opera ballroom. The dramatic crystal chandelier is truly jaw-dropping. In the center of the hotel you’ll find La Verrière, the perfect spot for a mid-day break but be warned, it is so beautiful you might never look down. Café de la Paix first opened in 1862 and boasts indoor and outdoor seating so you can fully embrace the Parisian lifestyle with a relaxed coffee outside or an elegant French dinner inside.
Hey Honey: The Hey Honey bar and restaurant at Maison Mère Hotel is a creative outpost for craft cocktails and unforgettable French fusion cuisine from Chef Santiago Guerrero. From the artistic decor to the inspiring seasonal menu, you will fall in love with the moody atmosphere and bold flavors at Hey Honey. For happy hour, we suggest snagging a seat at the bar and sipping the sparkly Euphoria cocktail made with Normindia Gin, absinth, coconut-pandan and club soda.
Fouquet’s Paris: Fouquet’s restaurant at Hotel Barrière sits on the corner of avenue George V and the legendary Champs-Elysées. The traditional Parisian brasserie decor is elegant and sumptuous, offering a chic atmosphere for an intimate dining experience. You’ll notice the walls are adorned with black and white photographs of famous guests like Liza Minnelli and Jack Nicholson, adding a playful flare to the upscale vibe. In 2017, Fouquet’s completed a redesign two enhance the spirit of the historic space and the exquisite menu was transformed in collaboration with French chef Pierre Gagnaire. Menu highlights include Fouquet’s signature beef tartare and fresh burrata with tomato and basil.
Voyage at La Samaritaine: The newly opened Voyage restaurant is located on the top level of the LVMH-owned luxury department store. You’ll be surrounded by landmarks like the Louvre Museum, the Notre-Dame Cathédrale and Le Centre Pompidou. The art nouveau glass ceiling above you at Voyage Samaritaine is matched only by the historic wall murals surrounding you and of course, the unique culinary and beverage menus. Opt for a traditional French dish like duck foie gras with a Samaritaine twist or discover the special seasonal options like the autumnal caramelized pork belly. Mixologist Matthias Giroud curated an expensive drink menu with low alcohol options as well as more spirited craft cocktails.
The Rooftop Marta at Le Fouquet’s: This is actually a two-for-one photo opportunity. The Rooftop Marta at Hôtel Barrière Le Fouquet’s Paris is a colorful escape with innovative cocktails, playful beach-chic decor and unbeatable views. Head here for a spirited outdoor happy hour experience with friends with a vibrant backdrop for photos. Be sure to try the refreshing Tanqueray Night cocktail made with gin, cucumber, rosemary and lime. If you’re looking for a more mysterious evening, visit the speakeasy-style Marta Bar located behind a secret door in the hotel. The velvet seats, dim lighting and quirky decor with transport you to the prohibition era and trust us, you will want to document all the neon signage.
Galeries Lafayette Rooftop: Visit the Galeries Lafayette Paris for a bit of shopping and then head to the rooftop terrace observation deck located on the 8th floor for a panoramic view of the city skyline. You will be able to see the Opéra Garnier, the Eiffel Tower and the Basilica of the Sacré Coeur. There is a charming restaurant with both indoor and outdoor seating so you can share a snack or drink while you savor the stunning views of Paris.
La Samaritaine: You can seriously spend hours at the recently reopened La Samaritaine. From experiential shopping to fabulous eating and drinking, there is no shortage of entertainment. Throughout the 19th century building you’ll find Art Nouveau and Art Deco design details in the form of murals, the monumental staircase and the glass ceiling. Arguably one of most unbelievable photo opportunities is right outside. The building’s exterior has two domes made of glass brick for a magical look at nighttime and the facade is made of colorful ceramic panels, flower motifs and the word “Samaritaine” in elaborate lettering. We suggest taking a moment outside before entering this exciting world of activities.
Bourse de Commerce: The new Bourse de Commerce museum in Paris showcases the extensive Pinault Collection with more than 10,000 works of contemporary art from nearly 400 different artists courtesy of François Pinault. The ten evolving exhibition galleries feature thematic displays, exhibitions dedicated to specific artists, video works and experiential installations. In the center Rotunda of the Bourse de Commerce, visitors can view large-scale candle sculptures from Swiss artist Urs Fischer that are actually slowly melting. Each candle is lit and left to burn as onlookers watch the pieces melt over time. This specific installation is slated to be on view until December 31, or until the pieces completely melt.
Retro Sidecar Tour: Whether it is your first time in Paris or you’ve frequented the City of Lights, we found one of the most exciting and unique ways to view the city. A retro sidecar tour will have you zipping around town through the most famous avenues and the most charming side streets. Pass iconic landmarks like the Arc de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower in just under an hour. We love this experience as a way to get your bearings in the city before mapping out your weekend and to snag the cutest photo in a sidecar!
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