One of the things I was looking forward to most during our time in Paris was visiting local cafés for coffee and croissants. It’s how we began each day, and something I mastered ordering in French. On this morning, we were going to a fashion show at 11, which gave us plenty of time to meander down to the Le Marais neighbourhood, find a boulangerie and enjoy a café au lait.I like to research a lot when we travel, but I didn’t plan this day. You’re only given the show locations for Paris Fashion Week shortly before the event. We decided that where ever the shows were, we would arrive early to explore the neighbourhood and find a café to sit and relax.
You can’t really go wrong in Paris, but Au Petit Versailles du Marais turned out to be an absolute gem. The interior looked like a jewel box, complete with crystal chandeliers and beautifully decorated ceiling and walls. I found out afterwards, it is created by Christian Vabret, a boulanger and pastry chef who is also the founder of a prestigious French Bakery & Pastry school. No wonder we loved it so much! Complete with a patio featuring marble tables on a quaint Parisian street, this darling café will definitely be on the top of our list next time we’re in Paris.
After our first show, we had a few hours before our next appointment. We spotted a sign for the Picasso Museum, and immediately made a bee line to the entrance. We had wanted to visit this gallery, but decided we probably wouldn’t have time. I had forgotten it was located in this neighbourhood, so we were delighted to stumble upon it. The museum itself is a piece of art. The former Hôtel Salé was a private mansion owned by the City of Paris before it became the Museé Picasso in 1974, a year after the artist’s death. It has so many incredible pieces on display, along with wonderful details about Picasso’s life and his influences.
At the end of the day, we popped by a favourite photo spot, the Palais Royale to take a few shots. Located near the Louvre, down a cobbled street, you’ll find the yard of pretty pillars. This was one of the things I had researched and I’m so glad I did. We would have walked right by it if I hadn’t made a note.
It’s a fine balance between planning to make the most of your trip and over scheduling. On this day we struck the perfect balance – but then I think that might of been because we were in Paris.
Café Au Petit Versailles du Marais
1 Rue Tiron
5 Rue de Thorigny
8 Rue de Montpensier