Privilege Blog

The Privilege[d] Guide To Paris (for not too many euros…)

In case we were at all confused about the city in question:).

My trip to Belgium and Paris was a surprise. This meant that I did not have time to gather all of your suggestions in advance. My best friend prefers the spontaneous. This meant that I was not sure what we were going to do until we did it. I’ll post the trip report, as it actually happened, next week.

But you all gave me some great ideas, and I didn’t want them wasted. After all, some of you out there might be on your way and looking for trusted suggestions. Or, you might like to click all these links and imagine you are there just now, on a Friday as you wait for the weekend. Forthwith, the first edition of the Privilege[d] Guide To Paris. Thank you. And please add, if you like, any additional suggestions in this vein in the comments below.




  • Jacques Genin on rue Charlot in the Marais for mango caramels and tea service – an award-winning chocolatier – Valerie
  • LadureeHer Preppiness and Tish. In addition to the macaroons currently circumnavigating the Internet, Laduree offers very delicious lunches of the lady type. The 75, Champs Elysee location is gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous. And gorgeous. Verified by LPC.
  • Le Pre Verre, the Rive Gauche, 5eme – French with a twist of Asia. The suckling pig in a light curry/star anise sauce is good enough to cause unconsciousness. Be sure to walk the nearby streets after you eat. Cuisine gastronomique at bistro prices. Verified by LPC.
  • La Societe, in St. Germain des Pres – if you are looking for trendy, which, in Paris, can be ravishing. Via Tish, again, who knows whereof she speaks.


  • The Westin Paris – large, western, business-oriented hotel, with beautiful and classically remodeled new rooms. Located right next to the Louvre and the Tuileries and Avenue St. Honore. Helpful concierge. With 8,000 Starwood points, rooms can cost as little as $150/night. Verified by LPC.
  • The Hotel Bourgogne et Montana – Boutique hotel on the Left Bank. Prices starting around $300/night. Verified by LPC, but 30 years ago:). Looks to have been well-maintained.

*Note that both Tish and Deja Pseu are professional Paris people, dwellers and lovers of respectively. Deja has a trip planned to Paris soon, as does Mater. I am expecting many photos to extend my trip in my imagination. You should spend some time with them for deeper views. Finally, Duchesse, at, has a guide to Paris for over-50 women you can email her to request.

31 Responses

  1. What an amazing post! I have a very good friend Jen heading to Paris this week and am going to send her over to see if she can find any last minute tips from your post! Thanks so much for sharing!! :)

  2. A helpful roundup and thanks for the mention — isn't it a fabulous city? Can't wait to be there next month!

  3. Trish – Hope Jen has fun and finds some use in this list.

    Mater – I can't wait to hear about your trip.

  4. Rue de Jacob- a wonderful treasure trove of antique, flower and avant garde art galleries and clothing.

    Luxemborg Gardens- where you can join a spontaneous exercise class, tai chi and be totally charmed.

    Hotel L'Angleterre- Very charming, no frills, European on my beloved Rue de Jacob. Hemingway stayed there.

  5. If it's not too pushy of me, after you've been so sweet to mention my Paris blogging, might I suggest that rather than the link you offer above, which picks up any mention of Paris in any post, readers who want more travel-specific posts could point their browser to which collates all my posts that I've tagged "Paris"?
    The Google search your link points to has way too much of my outside-of-Paris life, and sometimes the only mention of Paris is that I'm wearing a scarf I bought there. The one I've provided here has some favourite Paris sites, photos, restaurant recommendations, shopping etc.,

  6. We are going most probably in July, so I take due note of all tips! Thanks!

  7. Trish mentioned that I should stop on by, and I amcertinaly glad she did. This post came at just the right time as my husband and I leave for Paris tomorrow! We made reservations for lunch at Laduree, and I plan to eat as many treats as I can while we're there!

    Thanks for this wonderful post!

  8. Great suggestions…now I'm going to have to put Paris on my list of places to go…if I can get to Europe this summer.

  9. Mr TBS and I are going in November for our 10the wedding anniversary. Thanks you for this guide!

  10. Marsha – Thank you for your comment and for being @americannanny on Twitter:). Follow her everyone who doesn't yet…

    Nola – Great timing. Have fun.

    Belle – Yes, and wear gems while there.

    JMW – I hope it's sooner rather than later.

    TBS – No way! That's great. I thought of you, what with the not too many euros part AND the high life combined.

    Class fac – Thank you miss world traveler:).

  11. I can't wait to see your travelogue and pictures. I loved the Cluny museum–my husband is interested in Roman architecture, so we had to go down underneath to see the Themes–and of course the Lady and Unicorn tapestries are there, and they're stunning.

    The Abbey of St. Germain des Pres was fascinating, too. I wandered in quite by accident and found a shrine to the dead of the Great War (my architectural interest), and–of all things–the tomb of Rene Descartes. And it so happened, too, that the next evening there was a performance of Mozart's Requiem in the cathedral, and it was lovely.

    That was five years ago, however, and to be honest I can't remember the restaurants where we ate, and our hotel was cheap and unremarkable. (Should you ever wish to visit the site of the Normandy invasion, or tour the Western Front around Ypres, I could give you wonderful recommendations, though.)

    My best memories of meals, actually, were of those eaten outside. Walking down a side street in the Ile de la Cite we encountered a Lebanese man with an enormous pita-like loaf full of oily, bright red tomatoes and cheese and had to ask where it came from–he pointed to a nearby shop, and thus it was that we sat in a small park relishing sandwiches of our own.

    And another time we bought meat and cheese and fruit and baguettes and a bottle of rose and sat in the Luxembourg Gardens eating lunch and watching old Russian men playing chess.

    And then one night, doing the obligatory pass-by of the Eiffel Tower we sat underneath eating sausages and chips and ice cream. Carnival junk food, to be sure, and like anything we'd get at the county fair Stateside, but it was delicious. Or maybe it was just the children turning cartwheels under the carnival lights that made it seem that way.

    Sorry to gate-crash your blog like this and then ramble on. One day my husband's academic itinerary will take us back to Paris (and I just realized that a colleague and collaborator of his now lives there, which gives us every excuse!), and then I will have to revisit your guide and the blogs of materfamilias and the other experts as well!

  12. My guide. written for women 50+, available by e-mailing me c/c my blog, Passage des perles. http: //

  13. Staircase Witch – We love long comments here. Stories are the point. Charming stories are particularly nice.

    Duchesse – Maybe you can give us a preview of your guide? An outline?

  14. What an amazing post LPC – you are so kind to condense all this for us – wonderful and utterly gorgeous too! So pleased you had a fabulous time there. x

  15. I will save this list in the hope that one day it will be very useful. Thank you (belatedly) for the Peruvian food recommendation in SF, by the way – we ate at Mochica and it was absolutely delicious. I've been wanting a good fish ceviche for several years, and finally! There it was.

  16. This is a too cool Miss Privilege, what a great idea! It is so nice to see that you think Monmartre is returned to what it was, last time I was there (at least ten years ago or longer) it hadn't made the change. It is great to read about the Westin, rooms that low would be an incredible deal!

    Thanks for collecting and sharing all of this, it just be copied and pasted to my word docs in my travel file!

    Smiles at you,

  17. I have traveled a lot, though not to Paris yet!! Lots of great ideas for that time in the near future!

    Art by Karena

  18. I can dream…love to go one day….
    Sometimes the spur of the moment trips are the best…and $150 for the Westin…that sounds affordable.
    I will wait for more info…and look at all the great comments…LPC is chanelling the new Trip Advisor!

  19. Semi Expat – Thank you. It's my pleasure, really.

    Julia – How fun you went to Mochica. That makes my day.

    TPP – I hope your work allows you some time to travel and enjoy.

    Her Preppiness – Thank you for making them in the first place.

    Karena – It's a wonderful place for artists.

  20. I know – doesn't that sound snooty: "I stay at this hotel when I'm in Paris?" Because you know I take little jaunts over there all the time. Tralalalala.

    We have decided not to go to Vietnam next year, mostly because there was no way to get there on FF miles in January (and some because I just can't stomach supporting a repressive government like that).

    I am disappointed because imagine how that little gem could have been dropped into conversation: "Oh, when we were in Vietnam last year." Just casually, you know. As if everyone goes to Vietnam. Then the little start of surprise: "You haven't been? You MUST go! Really. Before it's ruined by (sotto voce) tourists."

  21. La Cimitiere de Pere Lachaise. Oh my. I spent at least an hour in this place and would have happily spent a couple more wandering through, if we didn't have to meet up with a friend. I can't even begin to describe the experience of being in the "presence" of Balzac, Edith Piaf, Oscar Wilde, Marcel Marceau, and oh yes, Jim Morrison…

    You should definitely visit the next time you're in Paris. :)

  22. My guide: I have visited Paris over 20 times in 25 years, usually for weeks at a time.

    Some everyone knows about (Bon Marché´) which is my pick for anyone who has limited time, others not as well known.

    My DH also has a restaurant list.

  23. Class – your travel is more than jaunts:). And, um, my dad did go to Vietnam last year…

    Buckeroo – I could sense it would be wonderful. Went for a repeat at the Ste. Chapelle instead. Next time.

    Duchesse – I will edit the post to include a link.

  24. this site is excellent and the guides are excellent throughout the network sought and none had information that this site has enabled me congratulate very good information is very varied and interesting is great.

  25. LPC-
    Wonderful post on Paris… You really are starting to interfere with my workday…as a working class "Lawyer" WASP, I am ..sighhh… still working…

    Your post takes me back to the 90's…I was still on speaking terms with the 1st and we had twin sons less than a year old and a daughter in the first grade. I represented a Belgian company Barco Graphics NV out of Ghent, Belgium which sued a local electronics manufacturing company over this, that or the other…I was devastated to learn that to properly prepare the case for trial I would be required to travel to Ghent, Brussels and Paris for depositions. Was such a sad day indeed… :)

    I decided that the "brief" business trip to Belgium/France should be "Extended" and so tacked on another week for travel to Switzerland as well. I was very lucky to have my in house counsel counterpart (a Belgian born, french speaking and educated lawyer) and his wife as local guides in Paris. We flew to Paris, found our left bank hotel (Hotel Littre I seem to recall) and hit the streets with our metro pass…It was an amazing few days in Paris, although I sadly caught a bad cold and spent much of the time working. My Belgian lawyer counterpart laughed that It was no surprise I caught cold so quickly… Paris is dirty he was want to say.. he also seemed quite bothered by gypsies as well !

    After several days in Paris, we caught the high speed train to Brussels and then a local on to Ghent, which was perfectly charming. Enjoyed several days in Ghent…where a japanese tourist fell asleep in his bath with the hot water running one night and left us with no hot water for morning bathing ! Then back to Brussels for more depositions and some leisure time….then on an overnight train to Lucerne….

    Being the novices that we were, and having packed for business dress and with voluminous files, we managed to check some of our luggage at the Brussels train station before departure to Switzerland… Thank goodness !! We arrived in Lucerne early in the morning and schlepped our bags to our hotel.. I believe it was the Grand Hotel National…right on the water…very nice place… We spent two nights in Lucerne, then boarded a train for Interlaken where we stayed at the The Grand Hotel Beau Rivage…another beautiful hotel and location before heading on to Zermatt where we stayed at the Hotel Monte Rosa with beautiful views of the Matterhorn…We had amazingly clear weather with very nice views of the mountains during our entire stay in Zermatt.

    We returned by train to Brussels and returned home to our twin boys who seemed to have enjoyed having their grandmother stay and care for them…. Certainly a trip of a lifetime, and to get paid by the hour for the first half… Well that was the proverbial icing on the cake….

    I was also forced to travel during December to Bangor Maine on this same case…..opposing counsel thought he was really punishing me.. that is until he saw me at the check in counter with a shotgun and neoprene waders ! I managed to book a couple of days sea duck hunting on Penobscot Bay….had a wonderful time shooting Eiders, Oldsquaw and Scoters in the snow !

    Ahh the life of a Country Lawyer in Alabama !

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