Le Marais has always been a place where I sit with solitude, often accompanied by a nice glass of Côte du Rhône. It’s where I feel right at home.
Sunday afternoons. Urban escape. Creative impulse. These are the reasons why I often find myself in Le Marais. What used to be a religious Temple Quarter in 1240, eventually transformed into an aristocratic district under King Henri IV of France during the 17th century. When the Jewish community congregated in Le Marais after the French Revolution, faith and Art Nouveau gave architectural influence throughout this ever-changing neighborhood. Today’s Marais, cannot be further from the nuance of its name: the swamp. Thanks to the LGTBQ+ community, Le Marais progressed as a colorful home to trendy shops, innovative designers, sustainable cafés, and many forward thinking bars and restaurants. My love affair with Paris has lasted for more than a decade, mainly due to placid getaways in Le Marais. It’s always been a place where I sit with solitude, often accompanied by a nice glass of Côte du Rhône. Here, I feel home. I always hoped this sentiment of ease never evaporated. Fortunately, it never did.
an absolute classic
5 Rue de Thorigny, 75003 Paris, France
One of my personal favorite museums not solely in Le Marais, but in all of Paris. Musée National Picasso features 5,000+ paintings, drawing, sculptures and prints by the legendary Spanish artist who lived in France from 1905 to 1973. The museum went through a major renovation a few years ago, much of the collections featured today were donated by the Picasso family.
contemporary art gallery
76 Rue de Turenne, 75003 Paris, France
Opened by contemporary art gallery owner Emmanuel Perrotin, Galerie Perrotin was established in 1990 when he was merely twenty-one years old. With various locations in major cities around the world, the location in Le Marais is ultra special. Step foot inside an 18th century 1,600 square meters mansion with three fantastic gallery spaces.
if science & design had a baby
60 Rue Réaumur, 75003 Paris, France
Even the uniquely designed metro stop at Arts et Métiers (line 3 & 11) foreshadows the wonderment of a museum by the same name. With a plethora of fantastic galleries and exhibitions available in Paris, Musée des Arts et Métiers is often overlooked by travelers. This industrial design museum highlights scientific inventions via 80,000 objects and 15,000 drawings. It’s a great option for industrial design fanatics.
8 Rue Saint-Claude, 75003 Paris, France
There’s no shortage of artistic inspiration in Paris, especially in Le Marais, art galleries – large or small – seem to seem to compete for our attention at every street corner. Galeriepcp is a fresh take on contemporary art without the stuffiness that might sometimes exude from the Parisian art world. If you have an hour or two to spare in the afternoon, galeriepcp can get your creative mind cracking.
off the beaten path museum
8 Rue Elzevir, 75003 Paris, France
Musée Cognacq-Jay is situated in a hotel, displaying collections mainly from 18th century France with a multitude of decorative art pieces. It’s the perfect activity with a few girlfriends, especially when everyone is a little hungover on a rainy Sunday but still want to do something cultural!
4 Passage Sainte Avoye, entrée par le 8, rue Rambuteau, 75003 Paris, France
Originally established in Nice, France, Galerie Art:Concept came to Paris in 1997 as a continuation of its steadfast philosophy of bridging French and international artists through modern art and external organizations, including: Art Basel Miami. Every year, Galerie Art:Concept hosts 5-7 shows, you can always expect them to be thoroughly eclectic and artistically stimulating.
Marché des Enfants Rouge – oldest covered market in Paris
39 Rue de Bretagne, 75003 Paris, France
Marché des Enfants Rouges is Paris’ oldest market and a must-go especially if you’re famished for a local lunch on the terrace or prepping for a picnic by La Seine. The name means “Market of the Red Children,” takes after a 16th-century orphanage that existed in the same location. Red clothes for the children were symbols of donations from Christian charities. In 2000, the market reopened after an extensive renovation. Today, the wooden structure of the market signifies remains from the original orphanage. My favorite food stall is the Moroccan cuisine where you can taste lovely coucous and savory tagine. Also, try a stack of oysters with white wine at one of the outdoor restaurants.
2 Rue Perrée, 75003 Paris, France
Carreau du Temple was originally a covered market built in 1963, today it hosts a wide variety of markets, festivals, sales…etc. Check the website so you can attend some of my favorites events throughout the year, including: book fair, chocolate salon and my ultimate love affair – vintage sale!
64 Rue Vieille du Temple, 75003 Paris, France
For years, I wanted to peek behind the red gingham curtains at Robert et Louise but never got a chance to. Until one night a few years ago, my friend decided to have a spontaneous dinner in Le Marais after drinks at Le Perle. Typically too busy for walk-ins, we serendipitously snagged a table beside the wood fire pit in the back of the restaurant. Every bite was perfection. This is truly THE best entrecôte (boned steak cut off the sirloin) in all of Paris.
best beef bourguignon
49 Rue de Turenne, 75003 Paris, France
This delightful restaurant has been serving up tasty traditional French dishes since 1924 starring its signature dish: beef bourguignon – beautifully tender and flavorful. Pair it with a glorious glass of Châteauneuf-du-Pape, there’s nothing better! Le Café des Musées works with small farmers producing local ingredients, this is the ideal spot after a stroll in Place des Vosges nearby or getting drinks at Le Mary Celeste (see below.)
38 Rue de Saintonge, 75003 Paris, France
Mr. T is upper Marais’ trendy hotspot spotlighting creative tapas with influences from Japan, America, France…and more. The star dish is a kebab, brought to the table via an extravagant presentation eluded by dry ice oozing out of a gold polystyrene foam box, unveiling two twigs of thyme and a juicy kebab. Mr. T might require a long wait without reservation, so opt to kill time at Little Red Door with an inventive cocktail (see below.)
best deviled eggs
1 Rue Commines, 75003 Paris, France
Owned by the same team behind Candelaria (see below,) Le Mary Celeste is an enjoyable spot for great cocktails, cold beer and a few appetizers. The service is always top-notch, and the ambiance is always cool. My favorite dish here is the deviled eggs, which is marinated giving each bite an extra kick.
47 Rue de Bretagne, 75003 Paris, France
With a significant population of Moroccans in France, it’s no surprise there are more than a handful of fabulous Moroccan restaurants in the city. One delectable choice is Chez Omar, where aromatic couscous and acidic yet fragrant tagine flow from the busy kitchen all the way to the main entrance. Nothing beats a round of mint tea at the end of your satisfying meal, bon app!
sexy & sustainable
15 Boulevard du Temple, 75003 Paris, France
Bisou, means “kiss” in French. The bar screams sassy, sexy with pink awning while the sustainable menu has my stamp of approval. Whatever you’re feeling at the moment, Bisou’s bartender can whip up a tempting concoction quickly and deliciously. Meanwhile everything consumed is 100% locally and organically sourced, while waste products are reused as your next cocktail’s garnish. This is a great place for a relaxing afternoon with your girlfriends. Bisous…
69 Rue des Gravilliers, 75003 Paris, France
Derrière has the reputation for hosting the Fashion Week crowd, and it’s true. I wouldn’t go there for the food but love to hang out in this bohemian apartment where different levels have secret doors and playrooms. Especially the second floor fumoir is a Parisian throwback to the days of late-night talks about art or nothing with packs of cigarettes.
concoctions based on Mezcal
13 Boulevard du Temple, 75003 Paris, France
Tucked inside Hotel 1K, Mezcaleria has made a reputation for itself as an outstanding cocktail bar inspired by Mezcal – the Mexican alcohol based on agave. The bar hubs the biggest collection of Mezcal in Paris, there are 100+ references available. The bar’s interior design and menu changes every now and then, so locals like us are never bored.
cool British pub
8 Rue de Poitou, 75003 Paris, France
This laidback vibe is Paris’ coolest British-style pub. Owners of The Cambridge Public House have brought their chops from Les Grands Verres and Le Mary Celeste to bring us a 10-item menu that revisits every season to ensure each drink is made with the freshest local ingredients.
book & wine shop
31 Rue Vieille du Temple, 75003 Paris, France
One of my favorites in Paris is a literary getaway which acts as a bookstore and a wine shop. La Belle Hortense often hosts literary events, while other nights become tranquil escapes with a good book and a smooth glass of Côtes du Rhône. The walls are lined with a large collection of books that you can freely flip through, the staff is sweet and kind. This is my favorite bar, especially when I need some personal space or a mental break.
52 Rue de Saintonge, 75003 Paris, France
Candelaria has been mentioned in other Jetset Times articles, recommended by local mixologists. Years ago when I first discovered this place, it was such a hype. With so many speakeasies popping up left and right in Paris, Candelaria has been naturally overshadowed in recent years. This still a classic, however, especially if you’re craving for late-night Mexican tacos.
one of world’s best bars
60 Rue Charlot, 75003 Paris, France
The Little Red Door is quite literally behind a red door, upon entering you’ll discover a cozy little place. The bar doesn’t take reservations but it’s always packed. If you’re lucky to sit down at a table, explore an imaginative and luscious drink menu. On the off chance there’s an event at the bar, the vibe may feel like Spring Break 2000. In that case, don’t say you haven’t been warned.
pop art bar
52 Rue de Saintonge, 75003 Paris, France
Situated next to Derrière, Andy Wahloo lives up to the undercurrent of its name. Andy refers to Andy Warhol, while Wahloo means “I have nothing” in Arabic. From the outside though, the bar sign reads “oolhaW ydnA.” The thing is, Andy Wahloo represents us jetsetters – curious to try anything new at least once, living each moment from one continent to another. Enter this bar and you’ll feel right at home.
fashion week fave
78 Rue Vieille du Temple, 75003 Paris, France
La Perle may not seem like a Fashion Week staple, oh but it is. This unassuming fashionista hotbed features classic Paris café décor, cozy with leather seats. La Perle isn’t known for cocktails, food or drinks. But it’s about being in the know without looking the part. You get the drift?
21 Rue du Pont aux Choux, 75003 Paris, France
A meticulous selection from 1930’s to 1990’s by owner William Moricet. From Lanvin to Yves Saint Laurent, this famed vintage shop is tiny but extremely well curated. If you’re looking for one of a kind piece, this is one of the best places to browse through.
111 Boulevard Beaumarchais, 75003 Paris, France
I almost cried knowing that Colette closed its store in the 1st arrondissement, then I consoled myself knowing there’s still Merci. Another iconic concept store in Paris, Merci is a gorgeous store to sift through, especially for homeware, design and fashion items. The stylish three-floor shop has a café where you can stay low key with a good book.
men’s fashion meets book publishing
14 Rue Debelleyme, 75003 Paris, France
There’s just something really cool about Études Studio: it’s a lot like a fashion label with a dab of book publishing and a whole lot of creative energy. The brand’s sole physical store is in Paris, bringing their dynamic online retail experience to life. The store not only features cutting-edge fashionable streetwear for men, it also carries a vivacious series of magazines and vintage books.
beauty bar & concept store for skincare
17 Rue Debelleyme, 75003 Paris, France
Oh My Cream! is an orgasmic stop for any fan of clean beauty and premium beauty products. You’ll discover brands that are difficult to find and products for all ages, targeting different skin types. I love spending at least a good hour chatting with the staff and learning about new items on the market. Oh My Cream! is the perfect place to let your beauty geek run wild!
14 Rue des Filles du Calvaire, 75003 Paris, France
Paris is a marvelous place to stock up on design books, especially limited edition coffee table books. Yvon Lambert started with his first gallery exhibiting American artists in the 1960’s surrounding key themes, including: minimalism and conceptualism. His book shop in Le Marais is a treasure trove of rare-to-find prints as well as a dazzling collection of design books.
35 Rue de Poitou, 75003 Paris, France
It was clear to me since the firs tmoment I stepped foot inside this jewelry bar that Lou Yetu is an exciting place to be. This is my French friend’s favorite place to try on delicate, gold jewelries. Founder Camille Riou wanted to launch a feminine, whimsical jewelry brand that’s speaks to the modern French woman. I personally have a few pieces from Lou Yetu, so I highly recommend stopping by here for souvenir shopping. It truly represents the quintessential Parisian accessorized look.
vintage for guys & gals
76 Rue Charlot, 75003 Paris, France
Nice Piece is a superb place to uncover designer items in close to perfect condition, at accessible price points. Collected by owner Bonaventure Kell, these luxury vintage pieces are particularly from the 1920’s, 1950’s and the 1980’s. You’ll find something rock and roll just as well as something on the edge of minimalism. This is a timeless spot due to its relaxing and cozy ambiance, who wouldn’t want to hang out here and and gab about fashion all day?
20 Rue Dupetit-Thouars, 75003 Paris, France
Ofr is another one of my favorite spots, it’s where I go for gifts or a mental escape. The bookshop is quite small but it hosts a lovely collection of photography, fashion and art publications. Situated in upper Marais, Ofr is close to where I live so I love to pop in whenever I need a little artistic inspiration. I’m not sure if this still happens, but they provide you a canvas bag when you purchase something from the bookstore. Love an eco spirit!
Hôtel National Des Arts et Métiers – chic 4-star
243 Rue Saint-Martin, 75003 Paris, France
Obviously I’ve never actually stayed at a hotel in Paris, since I live here part-time. Except for my very first trip to Paris when I was 14, I don’t even remember where we stayed or what area it was. Hôtel National Des Arts et Métiers, however, is where my friends and I love to hang out and grab a drink since the hotel is centrally located between all of our apartments. The crowd is chic, especially when Fashion Week rolls around, the outdoor terrace and the hotel restaurant becomes a posh spot of who’s who.
116 Rue du Temple, 75003 Paris, France
When Sinner opened, my friends immediately booked a table for a girl’s night out. The colorful hotel rings true to the neighborhood’s creative soul, designer and architect Tristan Auer gave life to Sinner by transcending enthusiasm and elation through vibrant use of space. This urban escape has quickly risen as the IT place to be in Le Marais, amid endless options of staycation choices.
5-star 18th century mansion
28 Place des Vosges, 75003 Paris, France
Place des Vosges is split between 3rd and 4th arrondissements where I’ll be sharing my favorite addresses in a future article. One notable location in this posh square is Pavillon de la Reine boutique hotel – an 18th century château-style mansion oozing old-school charm mixed with historical opulence. Although you’ll be having breakfast in a historical cellar, the amenities here are ultra modern.