Saturday, January 01, 2011

paris je'taime: jour 02

I love the word le petit dejeuner... I also love the way the French have their breakfast with a baguette x croissant x combo along with nutella, jam, miel, fromage and butter! Also you get served juice with chocolat... glee!

The Metro just beside our hotel :)

There was a much celebrated Monet exhibition at the Grand Palais during the time when we were there. I was eager to attend it as a sequel to the Nympheas exhibition I attended in London when I was 17.

I had tried to book a ticket online but to my dismay they were already sold out since it was such an anticipated show. They had gathered Monet paintings from galleries all around the world for the supposedly most comprehensive Monet show ever! Exhilarating, non?

OMG. The crowd was massive. I was there at 09:30 and already a queue that appeared 1km long had formed at the entrance of the museum.

It was such an excruciating wait. 4 hours to be exact.

Fortunately for me, I got to talking with an old American couple standing just in front of me. They’re from New York (not the city but the state) and were such agreeable people. We joked and laughed and exchanged Paris notes. They made the 4-hour wait not too torturous.

Every single time the front-liners get let in, all of us would cheer for them: it really feels victorious to make it into the palace after what seems like eons in the cold French air!

Just as our turn approached, they halted the entrance. There were 2 families in front of us so it would definitely take yet another hour of wait ‘till it got to me. As they allow 20 people in at a time and only 19 had entered, the management hollered out to the crowd, asking if there was a solitaire visitor amongst them. Everyone looked at each other. They all came with family. Then the old American guy shouted and pointed to me, “She’s 1 person! She’s 1 person!” I was, like, “YEAH I’m 1 PERSON! I’m 1 person!!” Everyone was so excited ‘cos another one of us was able to make it in and gave me encouragement claps :D

I blew kisses to the crowd and told them I’d meet them all inside.

It was a fantastique collection of Monet dating from 1840 till 1926. My favourite pieces were:

- Le Parlement, trouée de soleil dans le brouillard
- Jardin de l'artiste à Giverny
- Poppies at Argenteuil
- The Luncheon

Alas, I’m unable to provide sneak peeks as the paintings were heavily guarded by security. There was someone watching us from every corner of the room!

It was past noon when I got out and met the parental at the entrance. They didn’t
join me as they didn’t care much for Monet and preferred roaming around the cobblestone streets of Champs Elysees.

Claude Monet 1840-1926
Grand Palais
3 avenue du General Eisenhower,
75008 Paris
Tel: + 33 01 44 13 17 17

Mmmy looks lovely here, non? So free-spirited and joie :)

We went for lunch at Kong, one of Paris’ fine rooftop eateries. You probably recognize it from movies or SATC.

It’s opposite the Vuitton building, above the Kenzo building.

Fascinating that their elevators are animated. They look like they’re telling you a story.

When you arrive at the 5th Floor, a door b*tch (well not really, she was actually quite friendly) will greet you and proceed to check for table availability.

Gnomes help hold your bags up as you start taking your coats off. She’ll bring it over to the cloakroom.

Potter about the cylindrical bar that holds tons of kitsch.

Oooh aaah at the pink Eiffel Tower.

Be blown away as you are taken upstairs to what feels like an acrylic paradise!

It was a wee smaller than I imagined but it sure was breathtaking.

Phillipe Starck everywhere.

Smashing view.

The yummiest cocktail (Lili Rose) on earth! Even Mmmy was a fan.

Food was nothing to shout about but ambience: *ding ding ding!*

1 rue du Pont Neuf
75001 Paris
Tel: +33 14 03 90 900

After lunch we headed to Marais.

Brought the parental to Shakespeare & Co.

Sophiekins used to be a Tumbleweed here. I had the desire but I lacked the guts and hate myself for it. Hope to make up for this one day.

Much has changed. Commercialization has it’s pros and cons. A little more profit but a whole lot less organic. Even the girl who works at the counter is stand off-ish and knows nothing of the photos by the main door. I know this ‘cos a couple asked her and her response was, “I’m not sure.” It definitely breaks the heart quite abit to know that people who mind the bookstore are no longer the real ‘strangers’ who dedicate their lives to writing and performing George’s bookshop chores.

I’m glad George managed to read our family letter to him a couple of years back.

Shakespeare & Co
37 rue de la Bucherie
75005 Paris
Tel: + 33 01 43 25 40 93

Maybe one day I’ll scan those old pictures from 7 years back and put them up for fun.

Of course just a stone’s throw away is Notre Dame de Paris and its famous terrifying gargoyles.

"L'homme a voulu monter vers les étoiles
Ecrire son histoire
Dans le verre ou dans la pierre
Il est venu le temps des cathédrales
Le monde est entré
Dans un nouveau millénaire..."

Tomayto.. Tomahto.. we all have our penchants. It is in unfair to leave Paris without giving the ‘other’ macaroon a try. When I mean ‘other’, I mean Pierre Herme known for his cutting-edge contemporary twists to customary flavours.

As opposed to froufrou Laduree, it was quite a feat locating Pierre Herme’s shop as it was pretty undistinctive. It’s a grown-up patisserie I suppose.

Every ingredient is finely selected and paired to provide a distinctive essence to go with their elegant finish. I mean Coing & Rose? Whoah... I don’t even know what Coing is!

Fuyoh, their cake-sized Ispahan looks gorgeous. I wish I wish I wish I could have that as my birthday cake this year!

As usual-lah no photography allowed. It’s a supposed French intellect thing which is just kiasu really. I did manage to sneak a final one of their macaroon tower for you though.
Pierre Herme
72 rue Bonaparte
75006 Paris
Tel: +33 01 43 54 47 77

After Pierre Herme, we dropped by Longchamp ‘cos I wanted to get a Le Pliage shopper. It was a close decision between the Eiffel Tower and navy but I opt for the navy one in the end in the spirit of classic Parisian Chic. I never thought I’d ever be caught muttering the word classic.

It is without a doubt I would not leave this city without bringing moi home a lil’ Repetto(!!) *wink*

Repetto is, like, the mothership of ballet flats. They, well, her actually... Rose Repetto created the perfect ballet pointe for her son Roland Petit a ballet superstar back in the days. Anyways news got around about this magically soft ballet slipper (it’s all about that inside-out stitch) and finally she was asked to create a more resilient ballet shoe for Brigitte Bardot of which the latter wore in ‘And God Created a Woman’. Voila! A fashion staple was born.

It is loved by so many... ballet divas, Sofia Coppola, Madonna, SJP and even Mick Jagger!

Makes me want to take up ballet again: pirouette, pas de chat, arabesque!

Love these! They hold ballet pencils and even just ordinary pencils ;)

They even have a plie bar!

I settled for (yet another) navy accessory: absolute beauties aren’t they? So delicate and refined. I’m so delighted to own a pair of history. J’adore Repetto!

Nights are spent watching French tele as Mmmy packs and repacks while sipping on a 0.75ml Rose (bought from Marche Franprix of course) and chomping on the ‘Tahpau of the day’. Last night I polished off 5 Laduree macaroons + 1 Ispahan.

Tonight’s ‘Tahpau of the day’...

Far right packet (L-R): Creme Brulee, Coing & Rose, Rose, Mogador, Infiniment Chocolat, Pietra
Middle packet (L-R): Chuao, Infiniment Caramel (fave!!), Eden
Left packet: Truffe Blanche & Noisette
(packed separately as it has a very strong aroma which may interfere with the palate of the other macaroons)

Pierre Herme Ispahan. It’s different from Laduree’s... snappier, tangier... but I prefer Laduree’s.

I love my days in Paris. It always ends with me feeling so fulfilled.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...