Archive for ‘France’

December 5, 2019

Back to Ranelagh ,the garden, Paris of course!

So on a grayish day I went driving to Paris of course why not, never miss an opportunity to be back in town. I had a whole month to enjoy myself in my beautiful Paris and after been in Brittany for long years is always good to be back. Mind you ,I have been back at least one day every month for many years but been there for a whole new long period was wonderful.

I could not miss my old spots I love so much in my chic beautiful 16éme arrondissement or district of Paris. The Jardin du Ranelagh or garden of Ranelagh, I last wrote on it in December 5 2018 in my blog so wont repeat myself but here are some new  photos of a wonderful place.


This beautiful garden originally created by a certain Mr. Morisan this park was actually copied on that of Lord Ranelagh in London. On a small part of the park of the castle of Muette opens in 1774 the Petit Ranelagh. It will be a great success under Louis XVI and up to the Empire. Queen Marie-Antoinette comes to dance with her friends, escaping the protocol that weighs in Versailles.

Mimicking that of Chelsea (London) , a rotunda surrounded by a colonnade is built to accommodate concerts and balls. Demolished by Russian soldiers in 1815, it was rebuilt in 1834. In 1860, a public garden was opened under the name of Jardin du Ranelagh garden, in homage to Lord Ranelagh. Besides the puppet theater and the horse-drawn carousel, the garden is decorated with several carved groups ,including a group dedicated to the poet Jean de La Fontaine as well as his famous characters: the fox and the raven, which holds in its beak a cheese ,and other statues.


Centennial trees are among the treasures of the garden, including hazel and chestnut trees. It is actually a garden, in the plural, because this space is divided into three distinct parts. It has an area of 60,500 m² Triangular in shape is bordered on the west by the Marmottan Museum. The south of the garden is bordered by a part of the route of the petite ceinture or old little belt, the rails were removed and was built a walk adjacent to the petite ceinture to the Porte d’Auteuil. It is surrounded by the streets of Avenue Ingres, avenue du Ranelagh, avenue Prudhon, and avenue Raphaël with Muette metro line 9 just perfect. And just behind the fav resto La Gare (see my posts on it even recently ::)).

Here is a bit more on the Paris tourist office: Jardin de Ranelagh on Paris tourist offce

Paris is a lot more than monuments , all is a beautiful thing to see, walk ,smell and enjoy it. Hope you do in  your next trip to the city of lights. Paris is indeed a movable feast!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!




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December 4, 2019

Oh the streets of my eternal Paris!

And I am back at you with my wonderful rides and walks around my eternal Paris. These are places that I have walked or rode for many  years and each time now visiting the city are a must to be back. As we said once in Paris its an eternal love affair. Or is it like one of  my all time favorite movies Casablanca where Humphrey Bogart playing Rickie told Ingrid Bergman or ilsa: We will always have Paris!!! yes indeed. Enjoy the sights as I do!

Such as


passing Arts et Métiers !


vélib bike station at rue Réamur


driving by Maillot and the bois de boulogne ahead


yes! ave champs elysees to arc de triomphe driving yeah


bourse de commerce from halles


driving on rue de rivoli and the jardin des tuileries on left with Christmas deco and market


and the Grande roue is back inside the jardin des Tuileries


place des ternes


Chaussée de la muette metro station and architecture lovely Paris

Yes I too will always have Paris no matter where I live and no matter how wonderful it is in my lovely Brittany, Paris is attraction fatal one, a virus with no known cure, its unique, the most beautiful city in the world and more! enjoy it fully!

And remember happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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December 3, 2019

A culinary trilogy , Paris of course

Ok so I am back from another wonderful stay in the Paris area and feld good to be back to the old neighborhoods even if noted traffic  has increase indeed.  I have lots to tell you but now let me entertain you with a Paris trilogy of culinary excellence.

I was meeting some friends and they suggested to go one where they have been coming for the last 20 years, so could not say much, here we went. It was an absolute delight and super friendly servers and staff all knew each others! I went with them to Cafe Lacombe in rue des Acacias 55 , 17éme of Paris. Also ,the corner with 37 avenue Mac Mahon, metro Ternes line 2 and parking as I did at Autocité Ternes at 38 avenue de Ternes!!


The Café Lacombe is as said above off the avenue des Ternes and not far from the Arc de Triomphe, an ideal place to satisfy your most greedy desires. In addition to a bar, it is indeed a real manufacturer-confectioner. And what better than to drink a good drink by accompanying pastries worthy of the greatest? Indeed they are sublime just for a pastry and a glass of delicious red wine will do but heck we had a nice steak as well lol!! The decor is refined with floral decoration, gilding, velvet sofa so nicely done. An exquisite setting to plunge you into a world as beautiful as Paris! The  pink ceiling decorated with mirrors that gives an acidic atmosphere to the room. You have the possibility of tasting delicious pastries while having a drink. A happy hour extended until 22h from Monday to Saturday, and great friendly folks, as the company was nice! After 20 years coming here I guess it will be worth a repeat by yours truly. No webpage indeed contact tel +33 (0) 1 43 80 92 25.



Then, I head out to my all time best area in the Muette, 16 arrondissement of Paris by metro Muette there are superbe restos. My favorite is La Gare, an old train station turn into restaurant several years back and always back even friends visiting me took them here. Love it bar , terrace and resto; all wonderful. This time just stop for a glass of wine at the bar as was waiting for more friends across the street. I have written before in my blog so will just give you their webpage and do go there when in Paris; even the webpage is enticing !!! La Gare Paris restaurant



Finally, I caught up with another group of friends who lives not far at Pompe and suggested to go here so I just obliged as they pick up the tab lol! We went to the wonderful La Rotonde de la  Muette. At exactly, 12, chaussée de la Muette.


Here you have old Paris and the crowd shows it very chic ambiance as in the 16 of Paris.  It is a place where the sign summarizes everything; the history, style, location, environment, atmosphere, up to the spirit of the neighborhood. The Marmottan-Monet museum is not far away, the gardens of Ranelagh are a few bushes further.


This Rotonde de la Muette with its Art-deco facade, its terrace, its interior revised, wooded, colorful, the fashion of today in simili Garcia, is the place where to meet oneself.   the ideal place to rest for a breakfast with friends or a client. Recently renovated a year ago, this brewery has kept its stamp while gaining a touch of modernity. Their webpage is here: La Rotonde de la Muette Paris


And the road warrior did came by car parking first at the Autocité Ternes and later at the rue de Passy parking near Muette. I must say the traffic inside Paris was normal but the one in the blvd périphérique and highway  A1 was very much jam all the time going and coming. For those on the move and to see the real Paris on the streets the parkings are here:

Autocité Ternes parking

Indigo parking rue de Passy Paris 16


Oh well this one have written plenty as was my old hangout when going out for an apéro after work in Paris. Each time back in the city try to stop by and this time was able to be there for lunch on a Sunday after the above so will include here too. Au Trappiste, 4 rue Saint Denis near Place du Châtelet is unique beer and beef place. I had my maigré de canard or duck breast and potatoes with a grand Karmeliet Belgian beers and expresso coffee all from a nice table looking at the theater of Châtelet! They have no webpage but my fav Yelp has plenty on them here: Yelp on Au Trappiste Paris



And there you go a wonderful time in Paris and of course nice to see old friends always great. Now some further posts on the subject of Paris and its area and already back home for the Holidays! Merry Christmas y’all, Joyeux Noêl, Feliz Navidad!! Feliz Natal!!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!


November 30, 2019

The Place and Fountain St Michel, Paris of course!

Ok hoping you are enjoying the ride as I, with my many posts on my eternal Paris taking advantage I am in the area for a while. The post is the same following brief stint in my blog like writing a bit on the Place St Michel and its fountain first back in November 12 2108 in my blog.

This time with new pictures let me tell you  a bit more on one of the must see in Paris, do you read me, walk!!! walk Paris I did all over and the beauty is many monuments are so close to each other you will have a full list of monuments in a short while. OF course, many of these I have already entered but even if do there is time to see many in a small radius Paris is walkable ,just do it.

Now a bit on the wonderful fabolous Place Saint Michel and Fontaine Saint Michel of Paris of course!


The Place Saint-Michel is a square located in the Sorbonne and the Monnaie neighborhood or quartiers of the 5éme and 6éme arrondissement or districts of Paris.


It should not be confused with the former Place Saint-Michel, located further south and incorporated into the Boulevard Saint-Michel in the 1850s. It owes its name to the proximity of the Pont Saint-Michel bridge, which was located near the Chapel Saint-Michel du Palais.

The square was created during the breakthrough of Boulevard Saint-Michel, in 1855 under Napoleon III. The breakthrough of this square led to the disappearance of the Place du Pont-Saint-Michel, part of the rue Saint-André-des-Arts, part of the rue de l’Hirondelle and part of quai des Grands-Augustins. The Saint-Michel bridge built in the 14C was redone at the same time as the square. The Place Saint Michel officially takes its name in 1864.

The Fontaine Saint-Michel fountain is located on the Place Saint-Michel, at the intersection of boulevard Saint-Michel and rue Danton. It has the distinction of occupying alone a whole gable wall.   The Saint-Michel fountain is part of the aeration plan of the city planned by Haussmann under Napoleon III.


The first idea was to erect a huge statue of Napoleon I but it was abandoned, and at the insistence of the municipal commission  who wanted to recall the memory of the old Chapel Saint-Michel in the city.  it was finally the struggle of Good against Evil which was retained as a program with the Archangel Michael slaying the Devil in a triumphal arch surrounded by winged chimeras or dragons.

The Fountain of St Michael is 26 meters high and 15 meters wide. It is composed in the manner of an ancient triumphal arch, a rhythmic bay marked by Corinthian columns in red marble from the Languedoc cushioned by four bronze statues representing the cardinal virtues. The composition with a central niche framed by four columns and a pediment is a reference to the Medici fountain of the Luxembourg Garden. The purpose of the polychromy is to balance the lack of illumination. This fountain, whose construction began in June 1858 was inaugurated on August 15, 1860.

The tourist office of Paris has info on it in English: Tourist office of Paris on the Fountain of St Michel

There you go another dandy in my eternal Paris, a wonderful area and while there I had the nostalgia to eat for lunch was perfect at the Le Clou de Paris ,1 Rue Danton right by the Place Saint André des Arts which itself is near the Place Saint Michel!  Fantastic service and the food was delicious lentils and sausages with bacon, ,crême brulée, all with a quart of Bordeaux house red and expresso coffee, all for about 25€;nice!!! Oh yes came by car lol! and parked at the underground right there St Michel (indigo group) super! Of course, I have a totally different opinion then the so call travel site, the resto is great maybe not crowded had to do but great nevertheless. No webpage. Tel +33 (0)1 40 46 88 57.



Therefore, always remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!


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November 29, 2019

One more time, Conciergerie de Paris!

Here is my continuing journey in my eternal Paris as I am stationed nearby these days lol!! Can’t be too far away from Paris and I need to bring up new pictures which brings great enjoyment to me even if not a pro at it. The fun is what kinds la vie est belle!!

I have written before on many things in Paris and sometimes I must return back to them even if nothing more to tell, the pictures alone are my compensation, and Paris is a huge one indeed. I have written on the Conciérgerie de Paris much on its history on a previous post. The post is here: My blog previous post on the Conciergerie de Paris


The building is imposing indeed and even on rainy , lead filled Paris lol! and demonstration by all, there were lines to get in! Power Paris!!!


The wonderful golden clock is fantastic to look at and many were doing just that as I got muscled in to take my picture lol! I am a tourist !!! love it!!! Can’t help it to tell you a bit more!


As you know the Conciérgerie is found on the ïle de la Cité, along the Quai de l’Horloge in Paris. it is the oldest prison in France, very sinister memory moreover! A stroll on the side of this venerable place filled with a thousand memories dating from the Middle Ages is needed, especially when there is more than enough to tell and see.

When you arrive on the banks of the Seine,you are always amazed to see this majestic building, a mix of architectural styles, to be there. The Conciergerie seems relatively quiet, a beauty for the eyes.


The Conciergerie is actually the old Palais de la Cité, which was nothing less than the Palace of the ancient kings of France, the Capetian. The Conciergerie, also encompassing the modern Palace of Justice. The Sainte Chapelle, built by Saint-Louis, was also part of the Palais de la Cité.

There are two towers, the tour d’Argent or silver tower (where the royal treasury was kept) and the tour de Caesar tower (in memory of the Roman foundations on which the tower was built) were built by king Philip IV the Fair and completed in 1313, and they have reached us , intact. Today, you can appreciate the reflections of the illumination of the Conciergerie at night in the Seine river, it is a must to see.

There are no less than 2700 sentenced to death in just two years who will go through the Conciergerie! Marie-Antoinette and Robespierre stayed here, before going to the scaffold, you can also visit the cell of the former Queen of France. The cell was put back in the origina state, with wax figures for the guards, dressed in period, objects, sinister … it changes from the Palace/Museum of Versailles, for sure. It was nice to see a seat in Marie-Antoinette’s cell that was actually used to do her intimate needs !!

In the 19C, the future Napoleon III was also locked up, as well as the anarchists Orsini and Ravachol or Marshal Ney. The prison function will continue until 1914, when it becomes a national monument, and open to the public. A wonder to be seen again and again while in Paris

Just for the record, the tourist office of Paris on the Conciérgerie: The Conciergerie on Paris tourist office in English

Hope you enjoy the post and thanks for reading me , and Paris will reward you again and again, eternal Paris. And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!


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November 29, 2019

The foodie in me, best restaurants! World and France!!!!!

Ok so this is fun for me and love to eat good haa that is maybe one good reason I am in France lol! Written pieces on food and wine before, and will try once in a while to post interesting foodies reports here. I just saw one that caught my attention and translated a bit of it from Les Echos business journal on their weekend edition.

First, credit where credit is due, this is the Les Echos webpage on the whole article in French: Les Echos on the best restaurants in the world from La Liste!

And here are some excerpts in English

What are the best restaurants in the world? The question may seem inept, or terribly complicated … Better for what and for whom? Five years ago, Philippe Faure decided to take the issue seriously, and even to respond methodically. The former diplomat, who also owned the Gault & Millau guide and President of Atout France (the national tourism development agency), founded La Liste, an app that lists the best restaurants in 180 countries for travelers. A “metaclassement”, a bit like that of ATP for tennis or that of Shanghai for universities, which provides both a practical tool (the app La Liste) and a very original track record. By its methodology, it puts forward addresses often different from the three Michelin stars, or the list of the 50 best restaurants in the world established by the British The World’s 50 Best thanks to the votes of regional juries.

In exclusivity, Les Echos Week-End reveal the main results of The 2020 List, which will be formalized on Monday, December 2, during a ceremony at the Quai d’Orsay

Starting with the laureates, who are four this year. Two new names appear, and both are in Tokyo: Nihonryori Ryugin and Sugalabo. The first, an institution run by Seiji Yamamoto, offers elegant traditional cuisine (kaiseki). The second, only 20 seats, was created five years ago by Yosuke Suga, a chef with a more international and even French inspiration, since he worked for Joël Robuchon for a long time. The two other 2020 winners are more familiar to the list, since they were already big winners last year: Le Bernardin in New York, a Manhattan restaurant whose chef, Eric Ripert, is French, and Guy Savoy at the Monnaie,Paris.

Of the 1,000 best restaurants on the planet that we have distinguished, Japan is the first country in terms of number of establishments this year. It is being followed by China, which is gaining momentum. Then come France, then the United States. However, France is still doing well. We have made the accounts: with 120 restaurants ranked in the Top 1 000 for 67 million inhabitants, France has a ratio of 1.8 per million inhabitants. It is better than Japan and its 148 tables among the best 1,000 (1.16), and much better than the United States (0.28) or China (0.1). We are reassured!!!!!

Find the list of the first nine restaurants in the ranking, whose score is 99 or above.

Guy Savoy Monnaie de Paris / France (Paris) / Chef : Guy Savoy / Score : 99.5

Le Bernardin / Etats-Unis (New York) / Chef : Eric Ripert / Score : 99.5

Nihonryori Ryugin / Japon (Tokyo) / Chef : Seiji Yamamoto /  Score : 99.5

Sugalabo /Japon (Tokyo) / Chef : Yosuke Suga / Score : 99.5

 Kitcho Arashiyama / Japon (Kyoto) / Chef : Kunio Tokuoka / Score : 99

 L’Arpège / France (Paris) / Chef : Alain Passard / Score : 99

 Le Louis XV – Alain Ducasse / Monaco / Chef : Alain Ducasse / Score : 99

 Martín Berasategui / Espagne (Lasarte-Oria) / Chef : Martin Berasategui / Score : 99

 Sushi Saito / Japon (Minato-ku) / Chef : Takashi Saito / Score : 99

For business travelers or inveterate foodies, here are the best restaurants according to The 2020 List, in 20 capitals or major cities on the planet.

Amsterdam : Ciel Bleu / Chefs : Onno Kokmeijer et Arjan Speelman

Barcelona : Lasarte / Chef : Martin Berasategui

Berlin : Lorenz Adlon Esszimmer / Chef : Hendrik Otto

Brussels : Sea Gril / Chef : Yves Mattagne *

Doha : Idam (Alain Ducasse) / Chef : Damien Leroux

London : Gordon Ramsay / Chef : Gordon Ramsay

Lyon : La Mère Brazier / Chef : Mathieu Viannay

Madrid : Coque / Chef : Mario Sandoval

Marseille : Le Petit Nice / Chef : Gérald Passedat

Montréal : Le Mousso / Chef : Antonin Mousseau-Rivard

Moscow : Twins Garden / Chef : Ivan et Sergey Berezutskiy

New York : Le Bernardin / Chef : Eric Ripert

Paris : Guy Savoy Monnaie de Paris / Chef : Guy Savoy

Pékin : The Beijing Hongkong Jockey Club / Chef : Johnson Meng

Rome : La Pergola / Chef : Heinz Beck

San Francisco : Atelier Crenn / Chef : Dominique Crenn

Shanghai : Ultraviolet / Chef : Paul Pairet

Singapore : Odette / Chef : Julien Royer

Tel Aviv : Lumina / Chef : Meir Adoni

Tokyo : Sugalabo** / Chef : Yosuke Suga

Tokyo : Ryugin** / Chef : Seiji Yamamoto

* Déménage en mai 2020 à la Villa Lorraine.

** Ex aequo.

The authors of La Liste (the List), also list good bistros around the world. Here are their ten favorites in the Hexagone (France).

Au Vieux Comptoir ; obsolete, genre The Traversée de Paris. The charcuterie (Jura, Basque Country, pâté de l’Ardèche) is carefully selected, such as scallops, fish or veal kidneys from Corrèze. Regressive desserts, like this drunk baba of rum. 17, rue des Lavandières Sainte-Opportune, 75001 Paris. Tél. : 01 45 08 53 08. Budget menu à la carte from  40- 55 €.

Le Grand Pan :  Benoît Gauthier has earned a loyal following with his no-frills appetizers (creamy cold white bean soup) and left the choice between a saddle of golden lamb with saltire or a braised pork cheek with red wine. In the evening, soup of office, and choice between a pork chop (Ibaïona), beef (blonde of Aquitaine), veal (of Mauléon) or a Breton lobster. 20, rue Rosenwald, 75015 Paris. Tel. : 01 42 50 02 50. Count from 35 to 55 €.

Café de la Fontaine :Bruno Cirino is a huge chef whose talent can be put to the test both at the Café de la Fontaine and the Hostellerie Jérôme, the big table in the hinterland. Depending on the season, the market or the auction, the menu will feature a brandade of sweet pepper cod or Mediterranean fillet of red mullet with wild fennel. 4, avenue du General de Gaulle, 06320 La Turbie. tel. : 04 93 28 52 79. Menu 33 €.

Café Brunet :  Installed in 1875 in a building of the fourteenth century, this bistro is resistance. Here, no trendy dishes or interchangeable menus. The canaille menu announces the color: féra, apples in oil, candied pork cheek or grilled sausage, French toast … found. 18, place Gabriel Fauré, 74940 Annecy. tel : 04 50 27 65 65. From 26 € to 33 €.

Mets Môts : The old printing press has kept some traces of its past, but the delicate and tasty cuisine does not invite nostalgia. The pie, tart red cabbage, like the blood pigeon, fondue caramelized or pumpkin pie recall that the chef is a former Gagnaire. 98, rue Fondaudège, 33000 Bordeaux. tel : 05 57 83 38 24. Menus lunch 22 €, evening 33 € and 58 €.

Le Goût des Choses : It is said that Marseille is the capital of a continent named Mediterranean. Precisely, Olivier Rathery went on a stroll before settling there, about ten years ago. The slightly aniseed cod moss evokes Florida, the Chimichurri sauce applied to Simmental beef fillet, Argentina. 4, Place Notre-Dame-du-Mont, 13000 Marseille. tel : 04 91 48 70 62. Menus 24 € (debit), 32 and 41 €.

Daniel et Denise : Created in 1968 by Daniel Léron (MOF), taken over by Joseph Viola in 2004 (also MOF), this corkscrew institution is a sanctuary of the sapper apron, fat double (in the cap), passed the beaten egg, breaded, seared served crispy with a gribiche sauce or a snail butter. 156, rue de Créqui, 69003 Lyon. tel : 04 78 60 66 53. Formula (dej.) 21 €, seasonal menu 33 €.

Le Bistrot d’Antoine :A stone’s throw from Place Saint-Etienne, in the heart of Strasbourg, Antoine Kuster proudly composes his menu with the products and traditions of Alsace. Frog legs, schniederspaetle (stuffed ravioli), wild boar stew, roasting cock, hand-molded pudding. A paradise for gourmets. 3, rue de la Courtine, 67000 Strasbourg. tel: 03 90 24 93 25. Menu 33 €, carte 45 €.

Terre-Mer : (yes this is in my area !!! good one)This is the good address of Auray, in the Gulf of Morbihan, where Anthony Jehanno and his wife remind us of the immemorial links that the Bretons have woven with the sea. The “pot-au-feu” of  gamberoni and marrow , followed by a monkfish tail, boudin, hock and langoustine bisque illustrate a creative and respectful approach to the products.20, rue Louis Billet, 56400 Auray. tel. : 02 97 56 63 60. Formula 28 €, menus 34 and 55 €.

Le Patio :   Although it promises to be self-taught, the young chef has a job: for example, scallops, cream of endives, confit pork belly, potatoes, or small cabbages (chocolate and passion cream). /blood orange). No map, but a slate and a reasonable addition. 5, rue Christine, 50100 Cherbourg. tel : 02 33 52 49 10. Menus 22 € (lunch) and 30 €.

And there you go folks, we keep on ticking the world with the best culinary skills and tastes even in far away places , they are either French inspired or French expatriates doing the work of heavens on earth. Bon appétit!!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!


November 29, 2019

One more time,Sainte Chapelle de Paris!

Here is my continuing journey in my eternal Paris as I am stationed nearby these days lol!! Can’t be too away from Paris and I need to bring up new pictures which brings great enjoyment to me even if not a pro at it. The fun is what counts; la vie est belle!!!

I have written before on many things in Paris and sometimes I must return back to them even if nothing more to tell, the pictures alone are my compensation, and Paris is a huge one indeed. I have written on the Sainte Chapelle much on its history on a previous post. The post is here: My previous post in my blog on the Sainte Chapelle de Paris


This is wonderful and again on a rainy, lead around, and demonstrations in Paris there were lines to get in to the Sainte Chapelle, power Paris!!! It is a must to visit at least once in your lifetime. So need to tell you a bit more anyway lol!


The Sainte-Chapelle, also called the Sainte-Chapelle du Palais, is a Gothic church built between 1242 and 1248 to house the relics of the Passion of Christ, composed of the Crown of Thorns and a piece of the Holy Cross . This place of worship is located on the Île de la Cité. During the French revolution, the Sainte-Chapelle was repeatedly destroyed, but its priceless windows were spared thanks to the presence of large cupboards containing archives.


Originally, 22 relics were acquired by St. Louis. Only three remain today: a fragment of the cross, a nail, and the crown of thorns. They were deposited at the abbey of Saint-Denis during the French revolution, then handed over in 1804 to the archbishop of Paris, preserved today in the treasure of Notre-Dame Cathedral of Paris.

The Upper Chapel of the Sainte Chapelle was originally built to be a real monumental reliquary, so this part of the building is sumptuously decorated with sculptures and huge stained glass windows that flood the room with light and color.  Much more modest than the upper chapel, one discovers in the Lower Chapel , the statue of the Virgin, holy patron saint of the sanctuary. The polychrome decoration of the interior, where the colors red and blue predominate, aims to reproduce the original decor of the medieval period. In the apse on the left, a fresco of the Annunciation made in the 13C is still preserved; it is the oldest mural in the city. The two chapels were completely restored in the 19C.

We do not know the principal architect of the Sainte-Chapelle, nor the craftsmen who worked on the design of the stained glass windows. Which is not an anomaly for the time. The artists and not the craftsman, and the work signed  glorifying a man and no longer a corporation appeared in the Renaissance.

The Sainte Chapelle is true glass cathedral, the high chapel is composed of 618 m2 of glazed surface. An admirable set of lightness and balance.  Every year, from the altar of the Upper Chapel, Saint-Louis showed the relics to the Parisians on Good Friday. The 15 windows at about 15 meters high and 4.5 meters wide of the Upper Chapel represent 1113 scenes from the Bible, from Adam and Eve to the Apocalypse.  St. Louis has even represented himself on some of these scenes! The rosette is of Flamboyant Gothic style, a name that comes from the effects of flames used for stained glass. It does not date from the 13C as canopies, but from the 15C. It has 87 petals.

The tourist office of Paris on the Sainte Chapelle: Tourist office of Paris on the Sainte Chapelle in English

A masterpiece for the world and a must for all to visit while in Paris, enough said. The Sainte Chapelle is magical, and we love it.

And remember ,happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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November 28, 2019

Some news from France, CCXCII

Rapid fire news from France and especially Paris. If visiting next month be ready for strikes and big time. I drive but if using public transport it will be a battle, well even the roads will be more saturated as the French takes alternative routes. Just saying…

Be on alert if visiting Paris in Decembe 2019. Because, on December 5, and probably also the following days, rare will be the means of transportation. Traffic could be virtually zero on the RATP network. Automated metro lines – the 1 and the 14 – should thus work, unless the massive influx of users forces the RATP, as a security measure, to close the stations.  On December 5th and 6th, it will be chaos. People have anticipated, they are more or less organized. It remains to be seen what will happen on Monday 9th. It is announce massive so be ready and trace alternative routes. If doubts , questions, let me know here. Or in French info on the strikes here :

And for the shoppers be aware of Black Friday yes it happened in France too and Paris is ready!!!

The parking tickets for annoying or abusive parking are not reserved for motorists. Some drivers of buses/coaches have experienced this from today Thursday afternoon, near the Opera Garnier. Parking is only allowed on reserved and paying places by purchasing a bus/coach pass at the rate of 90€ for 6 hours of parking in the central area and 50€ for 24 hours in the rest of the city. According to estimates by the city/town hall, 1200 buses criss-cross the city daily in high season. To park, they have only 467 dedicated places of which less than half in the center area !.Easy to pass laws without the solutions that is Paris today. Source Le Parisien newspaper

In the project to extend the by 2024, a giant step has been taken with the completion of the civil works of the future RER E to Mantes La Jolie (Yvelines 78) .At the Nanterre station. The first rails will be ready for commissioning by the end of 2022, with the promise of a new generation line for travelers. The extension of the RER E towards the West takes shape with the end of the civil engineering works of the future station of Nanterre, one of the three new stations of the line with those of Porte Maillot and La Défense. In its central part, the future line RER E will be the most interconnected line in the region of Île-de-France. It will be with all the RER A, B, C and D, 10 of the 14 metro lines, 7 train lines, 5 tramway lines, the future lines 15 and 16 of the Grand Paris Express, a hundred lines of buses including those serving the three Paris airports. In concrete terms, the RER E, which starts today from Chelles-Gournay and Tournan, east of Paris, and ends at Haussmann Saint-Lazare station, will see its extended line of 55 km to Mantes La Jolie in 2024. An extension that requires digging 35 meters deep tunnel 8 km in dense urban area, between Saint-Lazare and Nanterre. Ok so this should help indeed ! Info in French here :

In their hands, a red, green and golden banner stamped Seine-et-Oise. Set by five passersby to a mahogany stick, the banner of the Amicale, a former fanfare of the town, offered in 1868 to the music company of Roissy-en-France by Emperatrice Eugenie, wife of Napoleon III. It had mysteriously disappeared in June 1979. In 1870, the war is raging but it is saved from the flames that ravage the city/town hall. The hour, however, is the French Republic. The reference to the emperor is thus erased and replaced by the mention Seine-et-Oise, still visible today. The Seine et Oise is the old region today Yvelines (78). More in French at the Le Parisien newspaper.

The pavilion of Russia presented at the 1878 World Fair had then joined Nogent-sur-Marne (Val de Marne dept 94). Its current owners have created two extensions respecting the building. More in French at the tourist office of Nogent sur Marne :

The latest photos of the 4,000 archival projects from the 1950s to the 1980s are posted on signs. Visitors are invited to tag them to identify places and projects. The rooms where the documents are kept, some of which are over 1,000 years old. A departmental archives reading room welcomes a thousand people a year, who consult nearly ten thousand documents in total. But via the website, eight million documents are consulted by 600,000 visitors. The building in Montigny-le-Bretonneux (Yvelines 78) houses the equivalent of 32 km of paper archives, among which are some exceptional documents. For example, there are plans for fortified places ordered by the intelligence service of Louis XIV and a beautiful watercolor plan of the city of Marseille or the story of Madame du Barry, part of England to find the diamond river that had been fly, specifies a guide. There is also the route of the first railway, which connected Paris to Saint-Germain-en-Laye, on which occurred the first train accident that almost put a stop to its development. It contains the minutes of the trial of Landru, who killed eleven women, in his house in Vernouillet (78), then in that of Gambais, guillotined in 1922 in the courtyard of the prison of Versailles. But also those of the former militiaman Paul Touvier, tried in 1994 by the Court of Yvelines for complicity in crimes against humanity or those of the last death row in the history of France executed in public. It was Eugene Weidmann, born in 1908 in Frankfurt am Main, a German serial killer who acted in the 1930s in France. Nicknamed the “killer with velvet eyes”, the man who recognized six crimes was guillotined on June 17, 1939 in Versailles, on the current place André-Mignot, in a festive atmosphere so shocking that the authorities decided after that to abolished public capital executions. Departmental Archives of Yvelines and the old Seine-et-Oise, open from Tuesday to Thursday, from 9h to 17h30 and one Saturday per month, from 9h30 to 17h30 (only on reservation of documents 48h in advance, next opening Saturday, December 7), located at 2, avenue de Lunca , Montigny-le-Bretonneux. Information tel +33 (0) or on webpage :

In the family room of the palace of Compiégne, wedged between the seats in Louis XV style gilded wood, the Fiat Stanguellini seems ready to put the gas to the allée des Beaux-Monts that faces it. In another wing of the castle, under the tapestries and gilded moldings of the anthapel, the experimental motorcycle Moto Major of 1948 triumphantly sits on its ivory white podium.  Further on, at the top of the staircase of honor, is the roar of the Mercedes Benz 3 liters of the racer Rudolf Caracciola who buzzes in the ear of the visitor. Welcome to the exhibition “Concept car, pure beauty”, which opens this coming Friday in the rooms of the Château de  Compiègne. An event dedicated, for the first time in France, to these record or experimental vehicles of which there is often only one single copy. Until March 23, 2020,  twenty-eight vehicles, record cars or motorcycles, will be exhibited between the hall of the columns, the guard room and the various lounges. A sign of this renewed ambition, the kitchen court, closed to the public since 1998, has been reopened especially for the launch of the exhibition, after renovation works. Until March 23, at the castle of Compiègne. Every day, except Tuesday, from 10h to  16h30 (last access at 16h). Rates (including permanent collections): from 7.50€  to 9,50€. More info at castle webpage :

This is the good news of the day, the exhibition of Van Gogh that hits hard since February is extended until January 5, 2020! This first in the world of art is the subject of a great sound and visual creation at L’Atelier des Lumières for many months. An immersion retracing the intense life of the painter through his greatest masterpieces.

 In the fall of 2020, the magic of Disney will stop at the Palais des Sports during an exceptionnel cinema-concert that will delight young and old Parisians as well as visitors. On the program: a musical and visual experience out of the ordinary. In front of a giant screen of 20 meters in ultra HD, a symphony orchestra accompanied by talented singers Emily Pello, Dan Menasche, Judith Derouin, Igor Bouin and even Cerise Calixte, the French voice of the heroine of the film Vaïana: The Legend of the End of World, will punctuate this enchanted trip. The Disney show in concert – Magical Music from the Movies will go through the Palais des Sports in Paris on October 24 and 25, 2020, it will cross France with nearly 30 other performances in Bordeaux, Caen, Dijon, Grenoble, Lille, Limoges, or Lyon. We dreamed about it, they did it! In the fall of 2020, the magic of Disney will stop at the Palais des Sports with a program, a musical and visual experience out of the ordinary.  We all know them by heart! Aladdin, The Jungle Book, Beauty and the Beast, Mary Poppins, The Snow Queen or The Lion King, all represent the soundtrack of our childhood. Ready to rediscover the pleasure of screaming?  Whether nostalgic, small singer or dreamer, this unusual film-concert is the show of the year not to be missed! Disney in concert – Magical Music from the Movies,  At the Palais des Sports, Dome of Paris, 34, boulevard Victor, 15éme arrondissement. Tickets like my favorite FNAC here: FNAC ticket for the Disney show

 And if not enough, another nice  museum in a memorable place for me. My first working train station where I learned the art of public transports lol ! Art Ludique or Fun Art – The Museum is the first museum in the world devoted entirely to the arts and culture industries. It brings together under the same roof video game, animated film, comic strip, manga and cinema design.  The museum will also be the first museum in the world installed in a train station in activity. Having signed an agreement with SNCF Gare & Connexions, the Art Ludique museum moved to Gare Saint-Lazare in 2020 and will open its doors in 2021. With an exhibition area of more than 1300 m2, the museum will present a permanent collection and evolutionary and temporary exhibitions. Formerly located at 34, Quai d’Austerlitz in the 13éme arrondissement, in Les Docks, city of fashion and design. More info here :

There you go plenty to do in my belle France and especially in my eternal Paris, the most beautiful city in the world witness by millions over the years especially that Bogart and we will always have Paris!!!!

And remember , happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!

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November 28, 2019

Paris and Tour St Jacques!

So on a nice Sunday braving the demonstrations I took my car into Paris, glorious!!! Easy once again ride on the A3 getting around Porte de Bagnolet into inner Paris and easy parking at Place Saint Michel!! And for diversity the way back I took out by the Porte de la Chapelle as easy as well!

As to minimize my word count I said once into Paris the best way is to walk, and walk I did all over, many posts to come. However this time will tell you a bit more on the St James’s Tower in Paris, Tour St Jacques.


Here is the must read from the tourist office of Paris: Tourist office of Paris on the tour St Jacques

For admission ticket information and visits official site is here: Official site for visits to the Tour St Jacques in French

Actually  ,do not recall having a post on it alone. So credit is due,here is my take on it

The Saint-James tower or Tour St Jacques is the only vestige of the Saint-Jacques-la-Boucherie church, whose new bell tower was built between 1509 and 1523, this bell-tower is erected in the middle of the first Parisian square, which bears its name , in the 4éme arrondissement of Paris.


While resuming certain elements of the contemporary Louis XII style, this building shows how much Parisian and particularly religious architecture is reluctant to the innovations brought from Italy and remains as in the hotel Cluny, faithful to the essential style 15C flamboyant Gothic. While the general architecture of the building remains essentially faithful to the flamboyant Gothic style of the 15C, it does not take less certain novelties induced by the new Louis XII style that triumphs then marking a transition between art Gothic and the Early Renaissance.


A bit of history I like

The Tour Saint-Jacques is an old Bell tower constituting the only vestige of the Saint-Jacques-la-Boucherie church, dedicated to Saint Jacques le Majeur (St James the Major). This sanctuary was home to a relic of Saint James and was a famous place of pilgrimage and the place of worship of the merchants of the neighborhood.

This bell tower was built between 1509 and 1523. It measures 54 meters up to the balustrade. The church was destroyed in 1793 and closed by the French revolution and became a national stone quarry site. It is said that the tower was not demolished because of the Church Saint-Jacques-du-Haut-Pas on the hill of  Sainte-Geneviève . A statue, installed at the base of the tower, reminds us. It is true that the later buyer of the church had a condition of not demolishing the tower. It was at the time one of the tallest monuments in Paris.

In 1824, an industrialist buys the tower to install a foundry of lead shots, turning it into a plumb bob. In 1836, after two fires, the tower was bought by the City of Paris. In 1852 the work undertaken on the occasion of the piercing of the rue de Rivoli and its decided of the restoration of the belfry. The statue of St. James, destroyed during the French revolution, is replaced by another, 3.80 meters high. The Church of Saint-Jacques d’Illiers-Combray, dear to Marcel Proust, retains the lead, made in 1858 to serve as a model for the sculptor. It was offered by Napoleon III to the municipal council of Paris which had made the request.

At the foot of the tower, was created in 1856 the first square of Paris (now place tour Saint-Jacques). At the foot of the tower, at the end of the 19C, the hiring of the workers takes place in the open air, the meeting place of the latter, as was the Place de Grève (current Place de l’Hôtel de Ville) is closed.

Since 1965, a plaque offered by Spain to the city of Paris, on the initiative of the Society of Friends of Saint Jacques, makes it a starting point for pilgrims to Santiago de Compostela. On the platform is installed a small weather station since 1891. It depends on the Montsouris Observatory. The carved symbols of the four Evangelists, the lion (Mark), the bull (Luke), the eagle (John) and the angel (Matthew), appear in the corners. The current statues date back to the beginning of the 20C, like gargoyles and eighteen statues of saints decorating the walls of the tower. The sculptures date from two eras. Some are from the origin of construction in the 16C, others were created in the 19C and 20C.


Visits are again possible. They are organized by an association authorized by the City of Paris and are limited to 17 people per hour, especially because of the narrowness of the stairs, 85 cm (about 33 inches)! Going up 54 meters or about 16 floors! Enjoy it

There now have another monument mentioned of my eternal Paris so good to be near it again and taking full advantage lol! Enjoy the Tour Saint Jacques! And remember, happy travels good health, and many cheers to all!!!


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November 28, 2019

Again by the Hôtel de Ville de Paris!

So here I am again walking my glorious eternal Paris! Its a great feeling to be back in the area even if already used to the countryside, coming to the big city such as Paris is always welcome by yours truly!  Paris is a movable feast indeed!

As usual I walk many streets and by many monuments already visited or walk by again is a must such as now. I like to bring you another post on the Hôtel de Ville de Paris or Paris’ City Hall. My last entry on it was back on March 28 2018!

The Hôtel de Ville de Paris or city hall is the building that houses the municipal institutions of Paris. The first hotel was built in 1357 by the Prévost of Merchants Etienne Marcel, It symbolized the municipal freedoms acquired against the power of King Charles V. It is located at Place de l’Hotel-de-Ville, in the 4éme arrondissement or district of Paris. The Hôtel de Ville, was re built from 1873 to 1892, in Renaissance style, as itw as burned at the time of the Commune uprising in 1871 ; it was extensively decorated almost identically reproducing the old city hall building of 1553.


The Hôtel de Ville  is bordered  by the Rue de Rivoli and south by the Seine river, the Pont d’ Arcole provides access to the Ïle de la Cité. I do not want to repeat my previous post as these are new pictures but will give you a brief description and some nice walks you can take from it ok


In the 16C, king François I rebuilt the city hall in the Renaissance style. The central pediment is adorned with a clock accosted by the figures of Work and Instruction, the Seine and the Marne rivers ,lying down, and surmounted by the City of Paris symbol. The Place de l’Hôtel de Ville, known at the beginning of the 12C as Place de Grève (name now commonly call the famous French demonstrations or strikes), will be renamed Place de la Maison Commune during the French revolution. The Place de Gréve was renamed Place de l’Hôtel de Ville in 1803 and it is a pedestrian area since 1982.

In 1977 a mayor was elected by universal suffrage, Jacques Chirac, (see my post in his honor) who would later become president of the French Republic (France). The voters from the 20 districts (arrondissements) of Paris elect, in a two-round listed election, the borough councilors ,who will designate the borough mayors and then the mayor of Paris.  As of today.

Since 1967, the expressway on left bank located on the old port forms a 13km highway linking Saint-Cloud to Bercy (voie Georges Pompidou). Every summer, stands Paris-Plage or beach along the banks of the Seine. The Place de l’Hôtel de Ville served as a setting for parties organized by the city such as the Saint Jean (st John) fireworks festival on June 23 or to celebrate the births and marriages of the Royal family, but also was the place where the executions from 1310 to 1830 were held such as those of Ravaillac, La Brinvilliers, etc. Today, the Place de l’Hotel de Ville is a major attraction point for discovering the Marais and is still the favorite place for festive gatherings of all kinds.

Some webpages to help you plan your visit here and yes it can be visit with prior reservation.

City of Paris on the Hotel de Ville

Tourist office of Paris on the Hotel de Ville


Now read this and do some wonderful walks in my eternal Paris from the beautiful Hôtel de Ville de Paris !

After admiring the Hôtel de Ville, continue your walk towardsthe Rue François Miron past the Saint Gervais Church, whose origins date back to the 6C but which was built in a 17C style combining orders Doric, Ionic and Corinthian.  Note in passing the elm located Place Saint Gervais in memory of a tradition dating back to the Middle Ages. It was under the elm that justice was done. The Rue François Miron, of Roman origin, led to the time of the High Roman Empire in Melun. Remnants of this period were discovered during the course of track leveling work in the course of the 19C. The other streets around, such as rue des Barres, rue de l’Hôtel de Ville and rue de Brosse, were formed in the Middle Ages and have retained their layout.

At 2 -12 Rue François Miron there were medieval dwellings of a single unhealthy floor. They were destroyed in 1733 to allow the construction of houses for the Saint Gervais factory. Note the motif of wrought iron guards, still visible today, representing the parish’s weapons, namely the elm of Saint Gervais. The Couperins, famous 17C musicians lived at this address. On No. 10 Rue François Miron was born Alexandre Ledru-Rollin in 1807, who in 1848 entered the Hôtel de Ville to proclaim the French Republic. Appointed Minister of the Interior, he re-establishes universal suffrage. At No. 16 -22 Rue François Miron would be the location of the first Baudoyer door, opened in the 11C, at the intersection of Rue François Miron and rue des Barres.

The rue Grenier-sur-l’Eau has retained the original features with its cobblestones, its axial stream animated with shops and craftsmen. It is, in some places, very narrow because of the corbelling of the houses facing each other. In the background stands the bell tower of the Church of Saint Gervais. The rue de l’Hotel de Ville, dating back to the Middle Ages, was formerly called mortellerie, whose ethology derives from a mortelier, meaning mason, because many masons reside there. It’s no coincidence that the Maison des Compagnons du devoir de Paris or Paris Companions of Duty House is located at No. 80-86 . Its origins date back to the 13C when the cathedrals and the great cities of Europe were built.

On the odd side of the Rue de l’Hotel de Ville, at Nos. 89, 91, 95, 103, 107 and 109, the street has kept some tall and narrow houses of the 17-18C. Rue des Barres has preserved some houses built from the 16C to the 18C and some traces of older remains, including No. 12 , the hotel of the abbey of Maubuisson dating back to the 13C remodeled in the 19C. At the time, many religious congregations had their Parisian feet on the ground to settle business in the city.

After strolling through the meandering winding streets of rue Monceau Saint Germain neighborhood, join the banks of the Seine river to enjoy the many taverns and terraces there. Why not try a traditional dish at Trumilou, quai de l’Hôtel de Ville or Chez Julien, at the corner of rue des Barres and Pont Louis Philippe, unless a Burgundy dish tempts you to Bourguignon du Marais, rue François Miron, before continuing towards the Ile de la Cité by taking the Pont de l’Arcole to join the Marché aux Fleurs (flower market), nestled between the Prefecture and the Commercial Courthouse and the Hotel Dieu. This flower market, installed since 1808 at Place Lepine, is a refreshing bubble to discover plants, shrubs and orchids of all kinds. Birds and Sunday artists like to meet the weekend.(see my post on the market).

There you I told you many times Paris is a movable feast, eternal, light and beauty to behold all around you. It’s one of those cities you can fall in love with without been human being but just a city of monuments and ambiance chic and beautiful. For me Paris is eternal! Hope you enjoy the tour

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!

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