Open Air Cinema — Paris Parc de la Villete

original__0a9b-arnaud-terrier-mairie-de-paris-cine-plein-air-villetteThis annual event takes place in Parc de la Villette where moviegoers can enjoy the big screen while sitting under the stars.  From July 23 to August 24, movies run Tuesday through Sunday, beginning at nightfall.  Celebrating its 24th year, it is featuring nostalgic films, including American Graffiti (August 2),  Hairspray (August 8), Sophia Coppola’s Somewhere (August 15),  Stanley Kubrick’s Lolita (August 17), and other international and French filmmakers as well (bien sur!). The absolute best thing about this is that it is FREE, so grab your blankets, a bottle of wine, some snacks, and make your way to the park for a warm night at the cinema! Read More »

Best Summer Events In Paris

IMGP0800.JPGParis has a full menu of events for summer, from the Open Air Cinema at Parc de la Villette through August 24, to scattered brocante fairs for treasure hunters seeking antique Christofle silver and oil paintings. On the first Sunday of each month the national museums are free and every Sunday bicycle riders can freely experience riding by the Seine in a car-free zone. Read More »

Summer in Paris

 

Photograph taken by Hélène Loiré: http://aparisouailleurs.canalblog.com/

Photograph taken by Hélène Loiré: http://aparisouailleurs.canalblog.com/

 

Ice cream cones drip in the sunlight.  Children laugh with delight as they ride the carrousel in the Jardin des Tuileries.  Women in breezy sundresses sit lazily at a café mid-afternoon.  Friends share wine, cheese, and a baguette for a pique-nique in the park. Stars only begin to sparkle in the sky after 10:00 pm, as shimmers of sunlight give the sky a light hue late into the evening.  And traffic hums on the Champs-Élysées well past 1:30 in the morning.

This is summer in Paris.  Read More »

Paris Plage — Beach Vacation on the Seine

paris plage 2013Parisians wear bathing suits, children play in sandboxes, and adults read steamy novels while relaxing on lawn chairs on a sandy beach.  No, this is not in Normandy, but on the Seine just across from the Île-de-la-Cité.  Paris Plage brings the beach to Paris on the Seine River, making a great venue to relax and let the children play on a “beach” just a skip away from the Louvre and Notre Dame.  From July 19-August 17, the beaches of the Seine in Paris are the place to be. Read More »

Paris Summer Sale (Soldes)

IMGP2007.JPGParis only has two sanctioned sales during the year — in January just after the Christmas break and in July just before the August holiday.  This year’s summer shopping sale season begins on June 25, and ends on July 29.  Unlike sales in the U.S., stores are open mostly during normal hours, except have extended days open on a few Sundays.  While it seems impossible, French law only allows sales during this time period, otherwise stores must get permission from the police to hold discounted sales outside this time period.  The theory behind this is that this protects the small mom and pop shops from heavy discounting by the major giants, like Galeries Lafayette and Printemps, but, in reality, this is a way to preserve price protection and state sanctioned price parity among retailers. Read More »

Fête de la Musique (June 21)

fetedelamusique2014For one night only, Paris is a true party town late until the morning with Fête de la Musique, which is a singular free music festival celebrating the beginning of summer.  As a glitter of light from late dusk remains until nearly 11:00 p.m., this event, in which normally restrained Parisians party loudly until the early morning, is a great way to experience different musicians in a variety of venues throughout the city.  Celebrating its 33d year, all events are free, and it is not unusual to see musicians just set up and play in a plaza, park or even in an apartment building, playing throughout the night.  Jazz, rock, contemporary, traditional French music — all genres are fair game for this extraordinary night.  Expect to find musicians throughout all of the arrondissements of the city, but if you are searching for specific spots, go to Champs de Mars, Les Invalides, Avenue Champs Elysees, Chatelet, Bastille, Parc Monceau, Le Parc des Buttes-Chaumont and Sacré Coeur.