Our wonderful Paris getaway

Apr 24th, 2007, 12:22 PM
  #1  
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Our wonderful Paris getaway

We had a wonderful , busy, five days in Paris.

Here is my idea of the short version!

This was a getaway for my husband and I. We usually travel with our now 13 year old son, but this trip took a little time for ourselves. I missed him terribly, but it was a nice break for all of us.

We arrived at CDG at 11:00 AM on Saturday April 14, after an easy flight from Boston via NY. My husband and I both took an Ambian as soon as the wheels left the ground and slept pretty much the whole flight. I woke about an hour before landing, had a cup of coffee and was ready to go. My husband, Ted, woke up just before landing. The luxury of business class!

Our hotel , The D’Aubusson, had a car waiting for us. This was all part of a package we purchased which included airport pick-up, tickets to the Delacroix and Louvre Museum,(which we did not need as we bought the Museum pass), a Pont Neuf Vedettes ride, And a fabulous champagne lunch.

We checked into the hotel, which we immediately fell in love with. It is in an ideal location on charming Rue Dauphine. Our room, number 106 was perfect. Large even by American standards.
We had double windows that opened up to a view of Rue Dauphine where we could sit on the sill and watch the comings and goings of daily life.

We quickly unpacked and set out for a bite to eat. We stopped at the first café we came to and sat down to a glass of Sancerre and a simple salad. A nice beginning. Our plan for the afternoon was to just walk and enjoy being in Paris again.

We walked over to Ile de Cite and on to Ste. Chapelle. It was a glorious, warm, sunny day. Perfect for viewing the spectacular stained glass. It was crowded, but not so much that we couldn’t enjoy it.

From there we walked to the Concergerie, as we have never been in. We did a quick walk through as neither of us found it as facinating as we thought we would.

Next stop we walked up to Place des Voges. This is such a beautiful square, and as it was such a nice day, everyone was out and about. We stopped and paid our respect to Victor Hugo as we went by his doorway.

By now, we were pretty beat, and decided to go back to the room and relax before dinner. We stopped at a Supermarche on Blvd Ste. Germaine and bought some wine and sparkling water for the room.

I had made a reservation at Chez Allard. This was our third visit to Paris and this restaurant has sort of become”our tradition”.
After a Kir Royale, we had the Foie gras (the first of many to come) , the salad of haricots verts and their famous duck with olives. Everything was wonderful, as expected.
The restaurant is on 1 rue l’eperon and if you go, ask to be seated in the room with the zinc bar.

The hotel D’Aubusson is home to the Café Laurent which is a wonderful little jazz bar. We could not resist stopping in for an after dinner drink and enjoying the music.

Day one was accompanied by 3 phone calls from our son and two emails. We brought our laptop with us so we could email him whenever we wanted, without the added expense, be he seemed to need to hear our voices every day. I needed to hear his too!. Glad our cell service works so well out of the country.!

This was pretty much a perfect first day in Paris.
Ralstonlan is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 12:41 PM
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Sounds wonderful.
julzieluv is offline  
Apr 24th, 2007, 04:01 PM
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Sunday, Day 2

This was Marathon Sunday, and I had planned out our day to avoid any delays caused by the race. Turns out, we never saw anyone until the race was over!

After a much deserved, restful sleep, and after a great breakfast at the D’Aubusson , (breakfast also included with the package) , we set off for the day. My plan was to hit the market at Blvd. Raspail, but sleep prevailed.

Instead, we made it to Notre Dame for the 10:00 mass to listen to the Gregorian chants. We stayed for about an hour, enjoying the music, the ambiance, the splendor of the cathedral, and mostly our
absolute fortune of just being there.

We took the metro to Blvd Hausmann to the Jacquemart-Andre Musee. A private mansion, built to house the private collection of the Jacquemart-Andre couple, is now one of my favorite museums that I’ve had the pleasure of visiting. Their lives were devoted to the luxury of collecting art, and boy,did they do it well. As my husband said, the problem is that I think I could actually envision living their lives!. Well not really, but the fantasy is fun.

Do go and enjoy the home, the collection and absolutely the brunch, The day was another glorious spring day, and we were able to enjoy their brunch outside, overlooking the garden.

A very memorable morning indeed.
Metro stop: Ste. Philippe du Roule

Our next stop was the Pantheon. Again we used the Metro.

For anyone who has never been to Paris, and has any reluctance to the Metro, it is one of the easiest subway systems to navigate. Have no fear!

We loved the Pantheon. Visiting the resting place of Voltaire, Rousseau, Victor Hugo, Marie Curie, just wonderful. The “Temple of the Gods” was another first for us in Paris and made us wonder why we had not visited it in previous trips.

From there we wandered across to the Luxembourg gardens. It was a warm day and we enjoyed the shade and watching the children push their sailboats around, The park was mobbed, with people sunning themselves and luxuriating in the warm sun and warm temperatures.

We stopped in at Ste Sulpice, but there was a mass going on. Respecting their privacy, we decided to come back on another day.

Making our way back to the hotel, we stopped in a Franprix so I could pick up some of my favorite mustard to bring home. The brand is Amora, and it is an inexpensive dijon mustard sold in wonderful little glasses that I like to collect. Not only is the mustard wonderful, the glasses are an extra treat!

Our dinner plans for Sunday were at Atelier Maitre Albert, on 1 rue Maitre Albert. We enjoyed a wonderful dinner beginning with an escargot brochette for me and a chicken liver salad for Ted. Main courses were spit-roasted shrimp for me and for Ted, a spit-roasted Lamb. A simple and elegant dinner.

Another beautiful day weather wise, and another well desrved good night’s sleep.

More to come.
Ralstonlan is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 02:30 AM
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Monday Day3

We rode the metro up to The Rodin Museum, only to find it closed. With all my careful planning, I neglected to check on their closing days. No problem, we made our way over to the Grand Palais.

It was another gorgeous day, so we just kept walking, making our way up to the L’Orangerie. Opening time is 12:30 (which I was aware of), and the line was already longer than I would want to wait. If anyone has any doubt about buying the Museum pass, don’t. We were the first to be let in for the day and had Monet’s water liles practically to ourselves for a while. The oval rooms built to house these magnificent paintings are impressive. The lighting is soft and muted, and makes the paintings come alive.
The rest of the museum has a wonderful collection of impressionist and post-impressionist works.

From there we walked through the Tuilleries and on to the Louvre. Our plan was to have lunch at Café Marley, but it was a little early for us. We decided to spend an hour or so in the Louvre. Another plus to the museum pass. We meandered our way towards the Flemish 17th century paintings and concentrated our time there. In a museum this size, I always find it necessary to pick a section or two, and not try to see too much. It was perfect.

We were seated ouside at Café Marley and relaxed over a wonderful lunch. We shared a tomato gateau and a crab and mushroom gateau that were both perfection. Dessert was a Framboise macaron that was incredible. Wine was a Sancerre.

I think the pre-requisite for employment at this café is to be a runway model. Every woman working there was tall, thin and gorgeous. Oh heck, how about another macaron?

We walked back across Pont Neuf and decided to take the Seine boat ride. The weather was perfect and it was a nice opportunity to just sit and rest our tired feet. The ride is about an hour and lovely. It is beautiful to see the city from the water.

Dinner tonight was Jaques Cagna, which is just around the corner from the D’Aubusson. I can’t say enough about this restaurant. It is beautiful, charming, fabulous service, fantastic art collection and this is all before tasting the food!

We opted for their tasting menu and course after course was absolute perfection. It was one of the most enjoyable dinners in a lifetime!

It was close to midnight when we rolled out of there and decided to walk for a while. We made it almost to the Eiffel Tower when my exhaustion got the best of me. We hailed a taxi and collapsed into bed. Happy, sated and still overwhelmed that we were back in Paris.
Ralstonlan is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 02:31 AM
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Enjoying your report Ralstonlan. Thank-you. We'll be in Paris in late June and we love the gregorian chants. Is that a regular event at Notre Dame on Sundays?
mideba is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 03:58 AM
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I believe it is. The mass starts at 10:00. It was beautiful.
Ralstonlan is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 05:40 AM
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I'm also enjoying your report as my family of 5 (kids 13, 11, 8) will be in Paris mid June for a couple of days.

Thanks for the info-looking forward to the rest.
djman102 is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 05:51 AM
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Silly question # 367

Visiting Paris in 3 weeks

Can anyone recommend a web page that will teach me how to pronounce specific French words such as Sancerre or au poivre....for example. I dont want to learn rules, just how to speak specific words so there is a semblance of someone understanding me.

Thanks in advance
fromMA is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 06:42 AM
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>>Oh heck, how about another macaron?<<

That's the spirit!

And for fromMA, someone on another thread recommended this site:

http://www.oddcast.com/home/demos/tt...le.php?sitepal
PatrickLondon is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 06:43 AM
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You'll need to copy and paste the entire URL for that last one - for some reason, Fodor's broke it up.
PatrickLondon is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 06:57 AM
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Thanks Patrick. It was just what I was looking for but after 5 tries it directs me to their website to purchase the software for business use. At least I know how to pronounce steak au poivre lol
fromMA is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 12:33 PM
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Tuesday Day 4

First stop this morning was back to the Rodin Museum. The last time we were in Paris was in late November and we really wanted to see the gardens in bloom. The peonies were out in all their glory. The array of colors, from the largest white blooms I’ve ever seen, to a deep magenta. The roses were just beginning to open. I imagine in about another week they will be gorgeous.

What a pleasure to walk through the gardens amongst Rodin’s works. They were unloading what we assumed to be a newly aquired piece and it was quite a sight to see this larger than life sculpture being taken off the truck . We spent a little while walking around the inside of the museum before heading off to the Opera Garnier.

I really wanted to see the opera house. I had hoped to attend an opera while we were in Paris this time, but as luck would have it, there was nothing during our dates there. This seems to be a recurring theme for me. I’m lucky enough to visit these beautiful opera venues, but never at the right time. (Same thing happened in Verona a couple of years ago).

The opera house did not disappoint. My husband didn’t really seem enthused about visiting here, but changed his mind while inside. What a gorgeous hall! Interestingly enough, he recalled that the grand gold hall was the one the Vanderbilts copied for their home in Newport. Can’t you just hear Mrs. Vanderbilt after attending the Paris opera? “Oh. Cornelius, we must redecorate as soon as we return home”

There was a rehearsal going on , so we only got a peak into the concert hall. Just enough of a tease to assure ourselves of planning our next trip to Paris so we will be able to attend a performance.

We walked from there over to Place de Madelaine. We had a wonderful lunch of salad with bacon, bleu cheese and a poached egg for me, and Ted had a salad with Foie gras( yes, more foie gras) and toast. Just great. A couple of glasses of wine and we were on our way to do some shopping.

I stopped in the Maille store right next door, to stock up on some mustards as gifts. I love their crocks, and had three filled, one with each of the different mustards they sell in bulk. Packages in hand, we set off towards Rue Faubourg St. Honore for some window shopping. We stopped in at Hermes and , although I swore I would not be tempted , left with a beautiful plisse scarf.
We continued our walk and ended up back at the hotel for a rest.

Tonight’s plan for dinner was L’Orangerie, 24 Rue St. Louis.

The restaurant is a lovely, little romantic restaurant on the Ile st. Louis. They served an amuse bouche of potato and beet puree, served in a vodka shot glass.
For first courses we had a mushroom and truffle ravioli that was heavenly and yes, the foie gras.

I had a red snapper in a lightly whipped cream sauce and Ted had a pork dish served with a red currant sauce that was fantastic.

Dessert was first a pistachio cream, complements of the chef,
we then shared a chocolate molton cake that had an orange liquor center, served with a toffee ice cream.

When they brought a small plate of chocolate truffles I thought I would burst. We walked back to the hotel, meandering through the streets of Ste. Germaine, hoping to burn off a little of dinner.

I think we walked easily 30 miles this trip. Given that 1 mile of walking burns around 100 calories, that comes to 3000 calories we burned. Subtract that from the 2,786,400 calories we ate, we might as well have taken taxis everywhere!

We stopped in Cafe Laurent for a night cap and fell into bed around 1:00AM. Life doesn’t get much better.
Ralstonlan is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 12:51 PM
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Paris is a wonderful city. It's definetely not one you can only go once, it has a pulling factor that draws you back

http://www.travel--guide.org/Paris
odysseusthebrave is offline  
Apr 25th, 2007, 01:41 PM
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How true odysseus. I'm already looking to see when we can go again!
Ralstonlan is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 04:53 PM
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Wednesday, our last day.

We woke to another beautiful, sunny day. I cannot get over our good fortune concerning the weather this trip.

We were off to the Marmottan Museum this morning This is a private mansion which now is the home to the world’s largest collection of Monet’s paintings. What a treat this was.
The collection was extraordinary and the mansion a delight.
The museum is located on 2 Rue Louis-Boilly in the 16th.
Metro stop is Muette (line 9) .

Next stop was the Musee de l”Assistance Publique, which is located on 47 Quai de la Tournelle.
The permanent collections are over 5,00 items, including paintings, sculptures, drawings and manuscripts which span the history of hospitals from the Middle Ages to present day.

This was a facinating collection and well worth the time, if it sparks your interest.

We had our lunch at the hotel, which was waiting for us in our room. They supplied us with a bottle of champagne, shrimp cocktail, smoked salmon, an assortment of cheese and meats, foie gras and bread. Later they brought a little box of chocolates.

While Ted napped, I ventured out to Bon Marche for a little shopping and took a long walk back to the hotel, stopping at lots of little shops on the way.

We both needed a nap this afternoon, and glad we did.

Our last dinner was La Truffiere and what an occasion it was.
We had arranged for the tasting menu, accompanied with wines for every course. I’m happy to go into details for anyone interested. It was quite an event!

Next: Summary and what I would like to see in Paris next trip
Wednesday, our last day.

We woke to another beautiful, sunny day. I cannot get over our good fortune concerning the weather this trip.

We were off to the Marmottan Museum this morning This is a private mansion which now is the home to the world’s largest collection of Monet’s paintings. What a treat this was.
The collection was extraordinary and the mansion a delight.
The museum is located on 2 Rue Louis-Boilly in the 16th.
Metro stop is Muette (line 9) .

Next stop was the Musee de l”Assistance Publique, which is located on 47 Quai de la Tournelle.
The permanent collections are over 5,00 items, including paintings, sculptures, drawings and manuscripts which span the history of hospitals from the Middle Ages to present day.

This was a facinating collection and well worth the time, if it sparks your interest.

We had our lunch at the hotel, which was waiting for us in our room. They supplied us with a bottle of champagne, shrimp cocktail, smoked salmon, an assortment of cheese and meats, foie gras and bread. Later they brought a little box of chocolates.

While Ted napped, I ventured out to Bon Marche for a little shopping and took a long walk back to the hotel, stopping at lots of little shops on the way.

We both needed a nap this afternoon, and glad we did.

Our last dinner was La Truffiere and what an occasion it was.
We had arranged for the tasting menu, accompanied with wines for every course. I’m happy to go into details for anyone interested. It was quite an event!

Next: Summary and what I would like to see in Paris next trip
Ralstonlan is offline  
Apr 26th, 2007, 05:59 PM
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Lovely trip report, Ralstonlan.

I am so close to finally convincing my husband to take me to Paris for Thanksgiving. I've been before and know he would love it but he is a very nervous flyer. Anyway, what sort of package did you get and from whom did you book it? I'd love to check it out.

Thanks!
Linda
LCBoniti is offline  
Apr 27th, 2007, 02:06 AM
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Hi Linda,

The hotel website, www.hoteldaubusson.com ,has several packages available. We booked "The Romance Package", which the price of staying there a bit more tolerable. (It is expensive).

Normally their rates are just for the room. The package included breakfast each morning, airport pick-up, flowers in the room, the wonderful champagne lunch, tickets to 2 museums and to a concert at either Ste. Chapelle or Ste. Sulpice.



We thoroughly enjoyed the hotel , and if it is within your budjet, highly recommend it.
Ralstonlan is offline  
Apr 27th, 2007, 06:18 AM
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We packed a lot into the five days we had, but we loved every minute of it.

The museum pass is invaluable, in my opinion. It gives you the opportunity to stop in a museum any time, for any length of time. Not waiting in lines is priceless.

Next trip to Paris, I hope to wander around and continue to discover some of the smaller museums. The list is endless.

Also, would like to spend a day just visiting galleries.

And of course, the food. Paris is an endless gastronomic discovery.

Thanks to all , for the valuable information I continue to get on this wonderful forum.
Ralstonlan is offline  
Sep 9th, 2007, 03:24 PM
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thank you for a great report!
gruezi is offline  
Sep 9th, 2007, 04:15 PM
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Thanks for your well written report...we jist got back and are aching to return.
RonZ is offline  

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