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Advice From Women Who Love Paris...


A neighbourhood Indian restaurant...

This may surprise you, but my favorite neighborhood restaurant is Indian. Within the last five years a large immigrant community of both Indians and Sri Lankans have found a refuge in Paris, many living just south of my neighborhood. The restaurant is called Mounshi Taj. Large windows allow light to stream into the airy space. With Indian music playing in the background, plus the pink and gray walls, you can well imagine yourself on the set of a Bollywood movie. And, the owner, Ali, is almost as cute as a Bollywood movie star. Definitely a plus!

The service is friendly and efficient. The last time I was there I had the "menu" for 9 E. First came a small silver platter of samosas and carved carrot flowers on toothpicks, accompanied by a selection of 3 chutneys. My main dish was lamb ("agneau") curry with plenty of basmati rice and then gulab jaman for dessert. All excellent.

Mounshi Taj is located at the end of a pedestrian shopping street, Rue L'Olive, which, with it's bazaar-like atmosphere, is growing livelier each year. At the other end of Rue L'Olive is one of Paris's covered food markets where they sell all sorts of fresh food. Address: 92 rue Riquet, 75018 Paris. Métro: Marx Dormoy. Tel: +33 (0)1 4209 3608. Open every day from noon to 3 pm and from 6 pm to 11:30 pm.
Jeanne, Paris, France


Three Parisien shops I love...

I've been living and writing in Paris for a while. Here are three shops I'd like to share with other JourneyWomen.

  1. UPLA, 5 rue St. Benoit, 6th Arrondissement, 33-1-40-1510-75; great, practical bags, among other things, but not cheap.
  2. Fragonard, 196 Blvd. Saint-Germain, 7th Arrondissement, 33-1-42-84-12-12, for terrific gifts, like embroidered travel laundry bags.
  3. La Maison du Chocolat, 19 rue de Sevres, 6th Arrondissement, 33-1-45-44-20-40 (and other Paris locations), considered la creme de la creme by connoisseurs.

Susan Spano, Columnist, 'Her World,' LA Times.
Website: (key Susan Spano into their search engine)


Musée Nissim de Camondo...

This very special townhouse, bequeathed to France in 1935 by the owner Nissim de Camondo, houses exquisite furniture, tapestries and paintings of the 18th century. It's built in the style of the Petit Trianon at Versailles. Walking through the house one imagines the de Camondo family in residence. Perhaps you can visualize them in the beautiful dining room being served by their butler, the table set with the Sevres porcelain (there is so many pieces in this set that it is stored in its own room next to the dining room). A glorious beginning for the Camondo family but short-lived and having a very sad ending indeed. Take the metro to Monceau and walk through parc Monceau to 63 rue de Monceau in the 8th arr. This women-friendly museum is open 10am-5pm Wednesday-Sunday.
Kathi Oliver, Tour operator, Kathi Oliver's France (A Woman's Paris)


Rent an apartment not a hotel...

Many visitors today are opting to rent an apartment rather than a hotel for their stay in Paris. Here is's advice for finding and negotiating the deal that suits you best.

  1. To locate rental sites, type "Paris, France vacation (or short-term) furnished rental apartments.
  2. Check to see what the agency fees are (some will be much higher than others, and if you search enough on the Internet, you might just find the owner and be able to wave the agency fee).
  3. Don't let pictures excite you so much you forget to check out the square feet!
  4. If you are sharing a rental, make sure that the only bathroom isn't accessed through one of the bedrooms (or that you and your friends have a good understanding of what to expect during the night)!
  5. Always, always, always ask for the all-inclusive price before you get excited about the estimate. You don't want to get caught with a phone and electric bill.
  6. Be clear about whether or not the cleaning fee is included.

  7. Many apartments now have internet access (DSL/Noos), or are willing to have it installed. Landlords who install it are generally more sophisticated when it comes to renting to Americans. Remember you'll generally be working with a French keyboard.
  8. One more thing about checking your email; if the apartment comes with dial-up, make sure to ask if it has a local "forfait" -- or if you pay the regular France Telecom rip-off rate. Ask how rates will be calculated.
  9. A Plan de Paris or a L'Indispensable (city map/guide) is a must for traveling to Paris, and a should be required material for serious apartment hunters.
  10. Some of these agencies are one and the same!
  11. Just because we might be missing certain things from these sites, does not mean that the agency does not have them. When requested, they often send them immediately.
  12. Ascertain who will be meeting you and such details. You need to know when, where and what.
  13. Request that the landlord leave you clear instructions about how things work in the apartment.
  14. Request that the landlord leave you details about his favorite neighborhood vendors, restaurants, etc.

Have fun, everybody!
Karen Fawcett, President of Bonjour Paris

Ed. Note: Bonjour Paris is a great website. Check it out!


Womens words on Paris...

The pearl-grey city, the opal that is Paris.
(Anais Nin, The Diary of Anais Nin, 1966)

One's emotions are intensified in Paris -- one can be more happy and more unhappy here than in any other place.
(Nancy Mitford, The Pursuit of Love, 1945)

A walk through the Paris streets was always like the unrolling of a vast tapestry from which countless stored fragrances were shaken out.
(Edith Wharton, The Reef, 1912)

Source: The New Beacon Book of Quotations by Women





More juicy tips about Paris 1/2/3

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