You and me and sweet Paris. We could start in the enticing patisseries & boulangeries (bakeries), dancing through the city’s vibrant art streets, browsing classical bistros and designer boutiques, lounging around beautiful parks and gardens, looking good on the top of the Eiffel tower. How long are we going away for? How about forever?
…These were my initial thoughts when Utopian Hotels invited us for a trip to one of the most romantic world’s cities. Read on about our little love affair with the City of Light.
We were staying at Nolinski Paris with Utopian Hotels. Beautiful, bright, clean, contemporary yet warm.. Total luxury. What we love most about this place is its location. Louvre is a 3 minutes walking distance, so are the Palais Royal gardens and loads of fantastic restaurants. Moreover, the rooms have a great view on the Avenue de l’Opéra.
The very first day we had slept till noon as we were extremely jet-lagged and even though we were an hour late for breakfast we still had it served! (It’s gestures like this that distinguish a good hotel from an excellent hotel.)
For the afternoon, Utopian had booked us a mineral spa so that we were able to recover from our travels and get all the energy for the following days of exploring. Uroš took a massage and I had a facial using the best Swiss products. It was an absolute dream. We then enjoyed the sauna, steam room and an indoor swimming pool (also perfect for after a very early morning cup of hot chocolate).
After we took a shower in our exquisite room, we put on fantastic bathrobes and comfiest slippers to enjoy the bottle of french wine Nolinski had left for us and listen to some of the most romantic composers of all time, it was really special!
On the side note: we basically been living in the hotels for the past few years, so me and Uroš had always been making fun that the first hotel that will ever have his slippers size (as he could never wear them so far) will get the biggest shoutout on our pages – so NOLINSKI is the one! They were so good, we even took them home, haha!
We then enjoyed our days to perfection here. The concierge and the fellas on the door had bags of personality and charm. To top it off, just as we were leaving for the airport, they rushed out to hand us two bottles of chilled water to take with us!
All in all, this Utopian hotel is a pride of Paris. Where luxurious comforts, works of art and Parisian authenticity coexist – it is the place to spend your holidays at when in Paris. We’ve linked their site here to get more of an idea of the concept.
Getting around Paris is extremely easy. Taxi or uber is the fastest way, metro the cheapest and private car service the most luxurious. Bicycle or feet are also great options, but then make sure to bring good walking shoes! You can also take the big bus or buy a day pass. No need of extra planning ahead, just take a map when you arrive.
How can one do Paris without drooling over the amazing offerings at the neighborhood patisserie or Michelin-starred temple to gastronomy… Thanks to Utopian hotels‘ suggestions, here is our take on the amazing french cuisine (the French word for ‘kitchen’):
– We began our mornings with breakfast at Nolinski with croissants from Brasserie Rejane. One morning we almost lost our self control and ordered one of everything. Thank goodness we didn’t know how to say that in French! We visited here for lunch one day too, and it is not to be missed: the Bavette steak and all the “almost too pretty to eat but not quite” desserts presented on the see-and-order menu.
– Never thought we’d have our best Italian pizza ever in France! Everyone, this is even too good to share!! Meet Daroco – world’s best pizza & words can not exaggerate. We’ve ordered Parma show with prosciutto, buffalo mozzarella and basilica. Make sure to book ahead. If not too tired, spend the rest of the night at Da Nico bar in Daroco restaurant.
– L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon Etoile – best for a lunch; take the set menu of EUR 49.00.
– Anahi by Riccardo Geraldi – it would be hard to find a better beef and greater atmosphere for a dinner out – try the Empanadas de Angus.
– Loulou’s at MUSÉE DES ARTS DÉCORATIFS – amazing location and even more the view, plus the Truffle Pizza was outstanding and made to perfection.
– Les Gourmets des Ternes – a very local/authentic and high end experience. We recommend the steak (you may have to wait a little bit but it’s totally worth it).
– Restaurant du Palais Royal – imaginative and beautiful dishes that were a taste sensation. Wines were exquisite. The location is unique making this a very special place to eat. Try the set menu of EUR 55.00 which we felt was a steal for a Michelin restaurant at THIS location for THIS food! YUM!
– Le Matignon – one of the world’s finest clubs. It has a great food and great atmosphere. If you’re wanting to get dressed up and have a fancy meal out in Paris in a lively restaurant with good music played by a DJ in the restaurant, this is your place! After dinner, visit a nightclub. We’d recommend the cheesecake – delicious!
– Don’t forget to try the nutella crêpe – generally anywhere!
Some more amazing suggestions handed to us by Utopian hotels, without any doubt worth trying out:
• Café de l’Homme: beautiful view of the Eiffel tower from the Terrace St-Germain.• Mama Primi: casual, trendy, good pasta.
• Le Dôme du Marais: casual, truffle pizza is really good.
• Ralph’s at Ralph Lauren: brunch or lunch.
• Kinugawa: excellent sushi.
• Mamo: lunch on the terrace.
• Le Derrière: a lot more about the experience than the food, we recommend it for a small bite for dinner followed by a visit to Andy Wahloo bar next door.
SEE & DO
As Utopian travellers, we now suggest you the *only* way to do Paris properly:
– Eiffel Tower – obvious one, no one could imagine Paris today without it, but if you can’t go at the crack of dawn it’s worth shooting from across the river on the riverwalk. There will be far less people around and you can have your own space to shoot things the way you want to. Give it a special moment also when the day turns into night – it gets all glittery and shiny.
– Louvre – one of the world’s most visited museums holding tens of thousands of works of art. You can’t miss this.
– Montmartre – visit the Paris’ most bohemian neighborhood on an afternoon walk, bring a bottle of wine and a blanket to sit on and watch the sunset. You’ll see where famous painters lived and worked in this beautiful hilltop part of Paris, with its windmills, cabarets and monuments.
– Arc de Triomphe – guarding the glamorous avenue des Champs-Élysées and rivalling the Eiffel Tower as the symbol of Paris; another must-see.
– A Tour of Paris with luxury service: get wined and dined while taking in the sights of Paris on a VIP tour. Forget waiting in line and mingling with the masses – it’s time to experience Paris like one of them very important people. 🙂
– Musee d’Orsay’s exceptional impressionist collection and Musée de L’Orangerie – combine this with your stay as those artistic treasures are just a short walking distance from Nolinski Hotel. Two more museums are Picasso Museum Paris and Centre Pompidou’s cache of modern and contemporary art.
– Shopping – The word ‘Parisian’ is synonymous with style, and fashion shopping is the city’s forte, so I am sure you won’t want to skip this. 🙂
– Buy books, vintage posters and postcards along the Seine!
– Explore on foot. Offering enchanting, tucked-away gardens, pedestrian cobbled streets that ooze charm and quiet elegance, and river quays that feel impossibly romantic, Paris will almost surely surprise and charm you.
WHEN TO GO
All year long! Summer and winter (especially holidays & snow time) would be our picks, but it is just as charming in both fall and spring.
HOW MANY DAYS NEEDED TO TAKE IT ALL IN
People keep returning to Paris as there is no amount of time that you could spend here that would make it enough. But if you’re looking to cover through just the main sightseeing points, then 5 days would be a good choice.
– Book museum tickets ahead to skip the lines.
– Choose timing wisely and visit the main sightseeing points (Eiffel Tower, Louvre) early in the morning to avoid crowds and have your own moment to enjoy the real Paris as in the old times.
WHAT TO BRING
– Many fellow travelers & fashionistas will tell you that stripes are the thing in Paris. So, bring sporting stripes and then see if it’s merely a tourist thing, or a decidedly French thing! Oh, and a beret! 🙂
❥ Cher ami, we hope this was helpful & happy travels!