Archive for March 28th, 2018

March 28, 2018

La Villette, that other park of Paris

I used to come here more often and saw the transformation of this area from  a low unknown to a vibrant lively area and up and coming real estate values.  I am talking about the La Villette and its park complex in the 19éme arrondissement of Paris.

I came back to the 19éme this area was the passing of many by me as it was my getaway to see my girlfriend now wife outside Paris on the old N3 now D603 road direction Meaux. It covers the northeast quadrant of Paris bordering the boulevard periphérique, the first mention of La Villette goes back to 1198, and the area was like many annexed to Paris proper in 1860.  It is divided into four quartiers or neighborhood such as La Villette, Pont de Flanders, Amérique, and Combat. The Grande Halle de la Villette, metal structures built in 1865-1867, it was the site of one of the biggest slaugherhouses in Paris and today it serve for cultural events and concerts.

The parc de la Villette, is located as mentioned in the 19éme arrondissement and on the quartier Pont de Flandre  is one of the biggest park and the biggest green area of Paris. It was built on the slaughterhouse of the Villette that were demolished in 1867 under orders of emperor Napoléon III and the prefect Haussmann , and finally raze in 1974. It has 55 hectares of which 33 are green areas so making it the biggest in Paris, larger than the Jardin des Tuileries with 25,5 hectares, parc des Buttes Chaumont with 25 hectares and the Jardin du Luxembourg with 23 hectares. It has the Porte de la Villette on the north, the porte de Pantin on the south and the Canal de l’Ourcq crosses it in the middle. Two pedestrian passarelles connect the canal with the north and south section, and also there is a floating mobile bridge half way between the two passeralles that allow walkers and bikers and mobility impaired persons to cross it.

There is a passages garden inspired from the exposition planetary gardens in the grande halle on a site of an old lamb corral; this island of green has 3000 sq meters with an ecosystem of forest, and dry stones.  It is a space of culture and teaching around ecological themes.

The things you will see here are:

The Grande halle de la Villette, with a nave of 9000 sq meters, the space Charlie Parker  with 4 000 sq meters, four studies and 8 balconies on the room Boris Vian.

Grande Halle on Paris tourist office here: https://en.parisinfo.com/paris-museum-monument/71597/Grande-Halle-de-La-Villette

The Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie opened in 1986. The Géode , a large dome shape building of 36 meters (119 ft)  in diameter housing a cinema IMAX cinema on a  geodesies dome opened  in 1985. The Cité de la Musique , concert hall opened in 1995 and music museum opened in 1996.  The conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de danse de Paris opened in 1990.  The little Villette the old pavilion Paul Delouvrier. The Zénith de Paris, opened in 1984 and stayed concert hall. The Philharmonic de Paris created in 2015. The space Chapiteaux with Chapithôtel opened in 2013 to house the artists. The submarine Argonaute. Cinaxe , this is a cinema made like a flight simulator ,very good! you play the movie with the same movements lol! The Trabendo opened in 1994 under Hot Brass spectacles hall . The wonderful Cabaret Sauvage concerts spectacles since 1997. The theater Paris Villette opened in 1986 in the old pavilion de la Bourse aux cuirs (leather stock exchange) . The Hall de la  Chanson in the pavilion of Charolais behind the Grande Halle. The Thêatre de la Villette, a theater and plenty around there too even on peniches boats.

Others are the WIP Villette opened in 1987 first as the Maison de la Villette. The  beltway spaces for residence of artists , an equestrian center, Pavillon Janvier, Cité Administrative, and the thematic gardens such as the  jardins passagers, jardin des bambous, jardin des frayeurs enfantines, jardin de la treille, jardin des équilibres, jardin des îles, jardin des miroirs, jardin des dunes et des vents, jardin des voltiges, jardin du dragon, jardin des ombres, and jardin des dessins. It has an equetrian center, sculptures, and music kiosques all around, great place to spend a day in a different Paris.

It has gorgeous walks along the Canal de la VilletteCanal Saint Denis,and Canal de l’Ourcq all meeting here going into a great esplanade to the Rotonda de la Villette ,the old tax authority now been converted into a Brasserie restaurant ,and very popular. The luminous cinema MK2  overlooking the canal is romantic ,beautiful cinema house.

All around these canals you have the bassin de la Villette, the biggest body of water in Paris with 700 meters long( 2310 ft) .  The aforementioned Rotonde de la Villette  is one of 54 buildings done in 1784 to received the taxes on products entering Paris; it faces the Bassin de la Villette.  For difference there is a nice church St Jacques et St Chritophe de la Villette at place Bitche a nice small park in front will do good for a rest and some snack/drink to recharge your walk, I know I did :::).

Here you can get to many peniche boat and cruise boat on the canals and bassin the most famous is the Canauxrama firm right on quai de la Loire. Also, the newer Paris Canal same side of the quais .

To have a zip drink spend a lovely time here other than inside the Parc de la Villette, you have a wonderful cafe LM at the MK2 cinema overlooking the bassin de la Villette, Belushi’s at rue Crimée is wonderful and youthful with good prices, and great views. For a heartier meal I suggest the Au Boeuf Couronné, for great beef and the signature of Gerard Joulie restaurants in Paris, located at 188 ave Jean Jaurés, metro porte de Pantin ,line 5 . There is a hostal St Christopher’s next to it with lively ambiance, great prices, and very easy located on metro Crimée line 7.

In all a labyrinth of good ambiance always guarantee.  The menu of activities schedule can be seen here: https://lavillette.com/en/

The Paris tourist office on it; https://en.parisinfo.com/paris-museum-monument/71469/Parc-de-La-Villette-Plein-Air

The Zénith webpage : http://www.le-zenith.com/fr/infos-pratiques/placement.html

Cite de la musique/Philharmonic de Paris webpage: https://philharmoniedeparis.fr/fr

Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie webpage : http://www.cite-sciences.fr/en/home/

Géode webpage: https://www.lageode.fr/?lang=en

And for reference, this is Paris 19éme arrondissement or district mayor’s office on the journal La Gazette in pdf files for local info and news: https://mairie19.paris.fr/pages/la-gazette-du-19e-12848#les-numeros-de-2019-et-2020

You will do good to visit this not often seen area of Paris, it is very nice. Hope you enjoy it and happy week, travel, and good health to all. Cheers!!

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March 28, 2018

This is Paris, districts and gates!

Well I am on the roll on my belle France and cherie Paris! There is so much here you will not be surprise to find Paris No 1 in WTO-UN of cities visited again last year with almost 32M !!!

The choices are unlimited and I find myself hard to choose what to write. Well this time , I will update you on gates, and districts of Paris; a tall order indeed.

The gates or portes of Paris.

North east on the 18éme: Porte de la Chapelle also N1 and A1 autoroute/highway (to CDG) ; 19eme :Porte d’Aubervilliers, also N301 ; Porte de la Villette,also N2 ; Porte de Pantin, also N3(to my inlaws !) ; Porte Chaumont ,also D35bis (Seine-Saint-Denis), Porte Brunet, Porte du Pré-Saint-Gervais, Porte des Lilas

East on the 20éme ,Porte des Lilas, Porte de Ménilmontant, Porte de Bagnolet,also A3 ; Porte de Montreuil, also N302 ; 12eme we have the  Porte de Vincennes ,also N34 ; Porte Jaune (inside bois de Vincennes) ; Porte du Bel-Air (inside  bois de Vincennes) ; Porte de Saint-Mandé (inside bois de Vincennes) ; Porte de Saint-Mandé, Porte de Montempoivre, Porte Dorée ou porte de Picpus, Porte de Reuilly, Porte de Charenton ,also N6 ; Porte de Bercy ,also A4 (in laws and Disneyland).

South on the left bank or rive gauche ; we have on the 13éme ;Porte de la Gare, Porte de Vitry, Porte d’Ivry, Porte de Choisy, also N305 ; Porte d’Italie,also N7 ; Poterne des Peupliers,  Porte de Gentilly. In the 14eme we have the Porte de Gentilly, Porte d’Arcueil, Porte d’Orléans, also N20 links to A20 into Toulouse ; Porte de Montrouge, Porte de Châtillon, Porte Didot, Porte de Vanves (great market here) ; on the 15éme we have Porte Brancion, Porte de Plaisance, Porte de la Plaine, Porte de Versailles, Porte d’Issy, Porte de Sèvres, Porte du Bas-Meudon (quai d’Issy).

On the West we have in the 16eme the Porte du Point-du-Jour, Porte de Saint-Cloud ,also N10, Porte Molitor,  Porte de Boulogne (inside bois de Boulogne), Porte de l’Hippodrome (inside bois de Boulogne), Porte d’Auteuil,also A13 autoroute to Normandy ; Porte de Passy, Porte de la Muette (my best entry to Paris when living in Versailles) , Porte Dauphine, Porte de la Seine (inside bois de Boulogne),Porte de Bagatelle (inside bois de Boulogne), Porte de Madrid (inside bois de Boulogne),Porte Saint-James (inside bois de Boulogne),Porte de Neuilly (inside bois de Boulogne),Porte des Sablons (inside bois de Boulogne), Porte Maillot,also N13

On the North west we have in the 17éme the Porte des Ternes, Porte de Villiers, Porte de Champerret, Porte de Courcelles, Porte d’Asnières, Porte de Clichy, Porte Pouchet. In the 18eme we have the Porte de Saint-Ouen, Porte de Montmartre, Porte de Clignancourt, also N14, and Porte des Poissonniers .

And of course some like the Porte Saint Martin are inside the city itself.  The Porte Saint Martin (b 1674) in honor of king Louix XIV.   The Porte Saint Denis (b 1672)  to  king Louis XIV . The Porte de Pantin was my first entry by car into Paris coming from Meaux in Seine-et-Marne (native town of my wife). Built in early 19C and name as such since WWII.

Paris

This is huge on the districts because there are divided into neighborhoods. A proper update will be long but you should get the picture below.

You should know that Paris has 20 districts or arrondissements numbered 1-20 and written after the departement/city number 75. So a location saying 75008 is in the 8th district for example. What folks do not know or most, is that Parisians have a habit of pinpointing their neighborhood when talking and getting to know you. These were done by Baron Haussmann too and correspond to four per district so neighborhoods or Quartiers and districts or Arrondissements.  You can see for example, somebody telling you lives in the 8th district or 8é arrondissement ,but actually lives by the avenue des Champs-Elysées their neighborhood will be Champs Elysées no 29. Therefore 20 arrondissements and 80 quartiers! Got it! Great! They are all explained in the blog posting to follow.

Arrondissement or Districts

Quartiers or Neighborhoods

Paris

rue de Rivoli with side view of Jardin des Tuileries

There, you have them. It will help you guide yourselves in Paris and come to know more of the daily life we carry here. I think is important not to go away simply with the tourist look but the local one, to really soak in the experience. I do it everywhere I go too.

Happy week, travels, good health and many cheers. Salut!

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March 28, 2018

City/town hall: Hôtel de Ville de Paris

Well seldom we write about our city/town hall but I do. Happened to come with roots in the oldest continuously in activity city hall in USA. That of the city of Perth Amboy NJ since 1789. Coming to Paris was a natural for me to seek info on the Hôtel de Ville de Paris.

Unfortunately nowdays due to our World becoming more hostile, the city hall is closed to public visits. The tourist office of Paris has more here: Tourism Paris Hôtel de Ville

The city has more in French , look at the chandeliers many if not all comes from the revolutionary demolished palais des Tuileries. City of Paris, Hôte de Ville

Paris

Hotel de Ville on place de l’Hotel de Ville Paris

The Hôtel de Ville goes way back actually. The first evidence points to 1357 when the Provost of merchants Etienne Marcel ( a metro stop for him!) built to symbolized the municipal liberties acquired against the power of king Charles V. It was done again in 1553 but this one was burned down as many other buildings including the Palais des Tuileries by the uprising of the commune in 1871. Again, worked started on the current one at the Place de l’Hôtel de Ville between 1873-1892 in Renaissance style with identical layout as the one from 1553.

It is located on the north by the rue de Rivoli, and the south by the Seine river, pont d’Arcole allows access to the Ïle de la Cité. The Place de l’Hôtel de Ville  (took current name in 1803) known at the beginning of the 13C as Place de Gréve (and the word did stuck to mean strikes) was renamed Place de la Maison Commune during the French revolution Today the Place de l’Hôtel de Ville is a pedestrian street since 1982.

paris hotel de ville back side

The first Paris government was created around 1260,  managing the flow of merchandise in the Seine river and others in addition to taxing the commodities and citizen coming in.  Before the French revolution there was a prevost, four elderman,36 advisors, and 16 chiefs of neighborhoods. After the French revolution, by october 19 1795 Paris becomes divided into 12 arrondissements or districts. February 17 1800 Napoleon eliminates the arrondissements. June 16 1859 the arrondissement come back, with the modifications such as the Chief of State names always the representatives of each district , a mayor and two assistants  chosen amongst the citizen the more influential for a period of 3 years .  AFter the creation of the department of Paris No 75 in July 10 1964 the city has a council where are represented the elected officials of each district but the city still has no mayor only a president of the council. in December 31 1975 after passage of a new law, the city finally has a Mayor of Paris so now it has a city and department as Paris no 75 in the region of Ile de France.  The law  of February 27 2002, given in to the democracy of proximity evoque to divide Paris for each 80K inhabitant into a quartier or neighborhood  so given birth to the Council of neighborhoods  that is taken from the council of districts.

The election to the council of Paris numbering 517 is done by vote of each district to eventually elect the council of district elects the mayor of each district thereafter.  The offiicial webpage of the city of Paris is http://www.paris.fr/

The city elections of 1977, the mayor was elected by popular vote was Jacques Chirac , the first mayor elected as such, that later became President of France.  The voters of the 20 arrondissement/districts vote in two turns the counselors of each district that in turn name the mayors of each district and they elect later the Mayor of Paris.

You have the wonderful dept store BHV nearby at the corner of rue de Rivoli ,and the metro line 1 and 11 takes you to the Hôtel de Ville. By car you have the wonderful underground parking Saemes Hôtel de Ville at 6 Quai de Gesvres not far from Pont Notre Dame

paris

Enjoy Paris ,run ,quick, it’s all worth it; we will always have Paris. Happy week, happy travels, good health, and many cheers!!! Salut!

 

 

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