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Special dinner in Paris..early reservations a must?

Special dinner in Paris..early reservations a must?

Old Apr 29th, 2007, 09:01 PM
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Special dinner in Paris..early reservations a must?

My husband and I are planning a trip to Paris in two weeks, and we would like to go somewhere special for dinner on our anniversary, which is Thursday, May 17th. I realize that also happens to be a holiday in France (Ascension Thursday). We, being the naive travellers that we are, did not realize until now that making reservations several weeks in advance for dinner in Paris was so common. I was just wondering if we should expect most places to be booked up already? Do you think that we could get a reservation at a nice place if we wait until we get in that Sunday, and then ask our concierge to help us with reservations? I'm also nervous about calling a restaurant, because my French is extremely limited. Do you have any suggestions for places near Le Vedettes du Pont Neuf? We'd like to do a cruise beforehand.
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Old Apr 29th, 2007, 09:19 PM
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"We did not realize until now that making reservations several weeks in advance for dinner in Paris was so common."

If you take into consideration the many thousands of restaurants in Paris, we are proably talking about a grand total of 2% of diners who make reservations -- mostly tourists and an elite which has nothing better to do. Most Parisians do not make reservations, because they are notoriously late for everything. When one plans to go to a restaurant with friends at 8 pm, you often don't actually get there until 10:30 pm. People prefer to talk, stroll through the beautiful streets, stop and have a drink in a café, etc., rather than turn dinner into something that resembles a doctor's appointment. Otherwise, why bother to live in Paris?

However, it is very true that tourists only get one chance at a lot of restaurants and keep a tight schedule. Just keep in mind that unless you have your heart set on a specific restaurant (which clearly you do not), it is often best to just go with the flow and find a place when the mood strikes you. Not a problem at all, even on a holiday.
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Old Apr 29th, 2007, 09:25 PM
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My recommendation would be to e-mail the Concierge forthwith.

But, it is difficult for anyone to make suggestions without knowing the type of dining experience you're looking for, what you mean by "special", price range, etc.

Many places (the most famous and popular) may be booked up by now, but there will be plenty of possibilities.

BestRestaurantsParis is a wonderful resource for perusing nicer restaurants, with sample menus, prices, link to website (if they have one), and you can reserve online.



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Old Apr 29th, 2007, 10:24 PM
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If you or the hotel concierge have trouble making last minute reservations, you might call American Express concierge if you have a platinum card (see the phone number on the back of the card). I have been successful getting late reservations using them. They apparently have a lot of clout.
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Old Apr 30th, 2007, 05:16 AM
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Hi J,

What's your budget?

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Old Apr 30th, 2007, 05:24 AM
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You will certainly be able to get into a very nice place (maybe not the big, big names, though) with 4 days notice! What kind of food are you looking for and how much pp can you spend? Let us know and maybe we can point you in the right direction. You want to be near the Pont Neuf? Do you mind going to another area?

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Old May 1st, 2007, 07:45 AM
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As far as price range, we were thinking up to 250 US dollars (whatever that translates to in Euros!) Also, the reason we wanted near Pont Neuf was because we wanted to do an after dinner cruise on the Sienne. Thanks for the advice so far. We were orginally thinking of doing Le Jules Verne, but I heard that it books up months in advance!
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Old May 1st, 2007, 08:17 AM
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Hi J,

> up to 250 US dollars (whatever that translates to in Euros!)

That's about 184E.

It would behoove you to learn the exchange rate.

Restaurant Lapérouse (51 quai Grands Augustins) is about a 10 min walk from the Vedettes dock.

You can meet your budget if you are careful with your wine choices.

See my trip report for more info.
http://fodors.com/forums/threadselec...2&tid=34676645

Enjoy your visit.


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Old May 1st, 2007, 08:20 AM
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PS,

Have you considered a sunset cruise and then going to dinner?

You wouldn't have to worry about rushing dinner to make the last boat - 22:30.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 10:00 AM
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It hards to have a nice dinner and then take the boat ride since the last one leaves os earyl. Unless you want to have your dinner at 5:30 in the afteroonn.

Agree that you should do the ride first - ad the dinner later - so you don;t have to rush it. Also - at your price range you shuold have lots of options (the truly hard to get into places are more $) - but I would contact your concierge now and get reservations - since the holiday make make it more difficult.
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Old May 1st, 2007, 10:18 AM
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Up the roan on Admiral Caligny Blvd. from the Pont Neuf is one of my favorites. Within your budget and delicious. Le Fumoir. Check it out on bestrestaurantsparis.com
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