Three things I learned in Paris

 

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  1. It snows!

This was quite a pleasant surprise for us, even if we packed the wrong shoes.  It was so dreamy- getting bundled up, sipping hot espresso, slipping on the ice. Driving in smaller-than-I’m-used-to cars on icy roads was fun and particularly panic inducing.  Alas, we survived and were able to celebrate with Fish and Chips (the only thing we could read on the menu) and more than enough white wine.

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We stayed at the Grand Pigalle Hotel in Pigalle, which back in the day was the hot spot for brothels.  Nowadays it’s pretty hip, considered a “bobo” neighborhood (meaning: bourgeois bohemian.) There’s lots of restaurants, music shops, swanky bars and great shopping. Moulin Rouge is just a short walk away.

2. Chic is French

Ease the eye rolls because I know this is obvious (for most…) But growing up in a suburb where the fanciest restaurant is Olive Garden gives you an appreciation for ornate attention to detail.  I get it now. Everything from the room key to the bottles of vodka in the minibar were so charming (like a medicine bottle!)  Not to mention the entire city that’s thousands of years old and fostered many of the world’s great artists.

Being able to feel the streets beneath your feet, visit historic landmarks, smell the locals, learn the language and be introduced into their lifestyle gives you a whole new understanding. I also get why Agent Provocateur are so damn good at what they do.

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Testing the Instagrammability of our balcony window. Five stars. Siq.

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Pigalle
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The infamous nutella crepe. Shortly before this trip there had been riots over a sharp price drop in Nutella here in Paris. I don’t blame them. This was from Bistrot du 9ème, a restaurant adjacent to our hotel.  It was there for us early mornings and late nights.
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The purpose for our trip – Marfa Girl directed by Larry Clark and produced by Adam Sherman premiered at the Rebel Rebel film festival, where Larry was the guest of honor.  Ten days of film screenings, ten days of Larry Clark films, Q&A’s, and master classes. Marfa Girl , although quite intense, controversial, and dramatic, was well received.
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With Larry Clark, Adam Sherman, and cast at Rebel Rebel film festival
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What Paris looked like 80% of the time. White wine and espresso.
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Jeans by shop ReDone, boots by Barney’s, coat by Paco Rabanne, shades by Attention frames
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The trip wasn’t all business though.  We had time to do some quintessential touristing at the Louvre Museum and had spaghetti across the street at Café Luc. Adam ordered a Ham and Cheese sandwich that was a foot and a half long.  It was delicious!

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View of Paris sunset from our room at the Grand Pigalle Hotel
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Admiring Lea’s work of art on display in a friend’s flat
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Now entering Cumbia night at La Java
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Late night French onion soup from Bistrot du 9ème
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Snowy nights
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Obligatory Eiffel Tour portrait. Coat from Paco Rabanne, orange beret from local stand.
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It’s a small world – running into LA friends in Paris
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Damage
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Ordering Room Service one last time. Wearing Agent Provocateur 
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What the continental breakfast looks like at the Grand Pigalle Hotel.

3. You don’t actually lose weight by only eating French baguettes and croissants

I heard this repeatedly before visiting, that the food in France is so much higher quality that you can eat croissants and pizza for ten days and lose weight.  I’m here to debunk this myth.  The quality of the food is indeed much higher, but I think that’s because it’s seasonal.  Since we came during the winter there seemed to be fewer options for big green salads like we’re used to in California. There was ham, cheese and bread; so much cheese and bread.  I felt like a loaf of it by the time we left.  Albeit a very happy and jet lagged loaf of bread.

 

 

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