Published on Tuesday, 10 November 2015
It’s in December, when Christmas is fast approaching, that Paris deserves more than ever its apt description as The City of Light. From the Champs-Élysées to the Grands Boulevards, and from the pretty streets of the Marais to the tree-lined thoroughfares of Saint-Germain-des-Pres, this is your opportunity to discover the capital decked out in her yuletide finery and revelling in an atmosphere of festivity.
Along the most beautiful avenue in the world
The Champs-Élysées is not only a must-see attraction when you stay in the capital, it’s also the ideal destination for Christmas shopping. All the major luxury stores can be found there, from Louis Vuitton to Chanel, but also the more affordable brands such as H & M, Zara or the DisneyStore, with its perpetual appeal to the child in us all. After a busy shopping expedition, you’ll want to take it easy, so stopping at Ladurée for a cup of tea is a good idea before setting off to admire the celebrated and lavish Arc de Triomphe.
Discover a legendary store
The first department stores emerged in the second half of the nineteenth century. Symbols of refinement and elegance, they attracted a wealthy clientele on the lookout for the latest trends in fashion and interior design. This year one of the leading stores, Printemps, is celebrating 150 years, giving the perfect opportunity to discover this true institution of Parisian shopping located on the Boulevard Haussmann. The 1865 store has changed, as it now includes three buildings and a total of 27 floors, but still exudes the same elegance and sophistication that appealed to the customers of a century and a half ago.
Go shopping in a temple of retail
The Beaugrenelle shopping centre was established at the end of the 70s, but was completely rebuilt recently and is now a gem of contemporary architecture. In a modern and elegant setting, you can browse among a hundred shops stocking a wide selection of ready to wear clothing, perfume, furniture, household goods and more, offered by big names such as Zadig et Voltaire, Maje, Sandra, American Vintage, Guerlain and Muji. This bright and welcoming shopping centre also has one of the largest Marks & Spencer stores in the capital.
Experiencing the magic of Christmas
Although it’s mainly in eastern France that Christmas markets and their traditional and pretty wooden chalets are most numerous, they now have a firm place in the capital, because Parisians have taken them to their hearts. These markets can be found on the Champs-Élysées, but also in front of the Gare Montparnasse and in Saint-Germain-des-Prés in the sixth arrondissement. Here’s an opportunity to buy some great gifts, including jewellery, crafts chocolates, Christmas biscuits, candied fruit and all kinds of meats, and enjoy a glass of mulled wine with cinnamon!
• Christmas shopping in Paris
• Department store Printemps
• Shopping hall Beaugrenelle
• Christmas market at Champs Elysées, Paris 8th - november 15th to january 4th 2016 - Metro line 1, 2 or 6, station Charles De Gaulle Etoile or RER line A, station Charles De Gaulle - Etoile
• Christmas market at Montparnasse - Paris 15th - december 10th to december 31st 2015 - Metro line 4, 6, 12, 13, station Montparnasse Bienvenue
• Christmas village at Saint-Germain-des-Prés - Paris 6st - december 2015 - Metro line 4, station Saint-Germain-des-Prés
Picture copyright holder : Tourist Office Paris - Photographer Stéphanie Rivoal
Hôtel de la Herse d’Or Paris, a two star hotel in the Marais district.