7 april 2017
A WALK under the arcades of the Tuileries
Parisian at heart, Beatrice Lissague has sharpened her eye between New York and Paris, looking for gems, houses that go unnoticed but great in their core business.
The Tuileries route, designed in the summer of 2016, brings together about twenty of them, which it highlights through a “Little extras” calendar, to be followed on Facebook and in the small agenda that you can find in member institutions: at Cadolle, an initiation to corset lacing, at Camille Fournet, a leather tangram and a glass of champagne offered for a purchase, at Whitebird, the piercing of the lobe offered during a piercing party, and many other surprises on this initiatic course, punctuated of delicious little privileges.
Some addresses with a British accent give the note: under the arcades, perched above the biggest English bookstore in Paris since 1903, the discreet Tea Room of WHSmith reopened in September 2016 in partnership with Twinings, The Queen of England’s official supplier, offering refuge to all lovers of fresh scones and clotted cream for the afternoon tea ritual. A confidential address to discover soon: the brunch served until 1 PM makes it possible to lightly start this route of made in Paris pleasures.
To delight, and then, steal away under the arcades of the Rue de Rivoli … On the ground mosaics, the footsteps are following a list of desires that a handful of Parisians consider in their shop, to satisfy beyond your expectations. Gathered around a charter setting the welcoming and the service at the center of their action, these shops decided to express their philosophy around “little attentions” printed in black and white in the heart of their agenda “Parcours Tuileries”: this illustrated cardboard leaflet contains about twenty cards, as many as Houses engaged on this way of personalized welcoming.
At 218 rue de Rivoli, the bar of the Brighton Hotel is perfect for a refreshing cocktail or a coffee if you do not have the privilege of the sublime views over the garden and the Musée d’Orsay from one of its rooms. Built by Lord Egerton in the early 19th century, it was one of the first hotels in Paris: the XIXth and dandy atmosphere persists in the lobby with its original marble columns.
A few steps from the Seine River, the Tamise brings London a little closer to Paris: a small hotel for connoisseurs, the establishment seduces the locals who come to lunch in the Bistrot chic spirit, with the kindness of a devoted staff.
An enchanting break where we take our intimate friends to share the soft and unctuous spirit of the place. For discerning foreigners, this is the ideal pied-à-terre, in a discreet but strategic street close to the Louvre and the Concorde. The hotel with 19 rooms only is placed 5th on Tripadvisor among the 1800 Parisian hotels by lovers of Paris.
Slipping through the sun rays, weaving our walk according to the shop windows, the faces, the colors of skin in this cosmopolitan Paris with a crazy charm … A nod to those who queue in front of Angelina for the African (the famous chocolate in which a cloud of milk is diluted), and, when reaching the Jeu de Paume, take on the right the Rue Cambon. A quiet street! Intimate, even. That of the feminine underwear of another time. That time when women still wore corsets to tighten their waist and bring out their chest.
The Maison Cadolle, however, contributed to the women liberation by inventing the bra in 1889. A historical place, which retains many secrets, glimpsed through the Calais lace of chic undergarments. One hundred and twenty years after the liberation of the body of the woman by Madame Hermine Cadolle, the temple of French lingerie is still a family story. There are secrets that must be kept.
Rue du Mont Thabor, four addresses you can not miss are marking the walk. A jeweller’s shop designed as a small Colette with a selection of jewelry designers who play the card of luxury without ostentation: White Bird. You ring, you open, a small lounge-library to sit down, a mirror to try the pieces, without stress or obsequious ritual, and that does not take away the preciousness of the jewel.
Further down the street, a second skin is waiting for you: at Stouls, stretch leather that goes through a machine and sticks to the body, like a glove, in pure shapes and sober colors. Fiercely sexy. We leave the Holy Land to find a victorious Napoleon in the Rue de Castiglione, evoking the battle that Bonaparte won over the Austrians on August 5th, 1796.
The square is closing with the optician who thinks big, the Meyrowitz boutique opened during the inauguration of the Palais Garnier in 1875. Here, the models created by the house were worn by the first aviators or mountaineers (the famous Gogles), by a famous painter (Claude Monet’s blue glasses), and also by Puyi, the last Emperor of China (the PY model), as many models sometimes re-edited and preserved in a small museum, the only Glasses museum in Paris, to discover.
And then, to end on a perfect touch, we let our hands taken by Causse, the glove maker. In this house founded in 1892, we can imagine the hands of the beautiful ladies before us … Just like them, we can not resist these true hands jewels made of lamb leather, sewn with care. And we say to ourselves: Yes, Paris does fit like a glove!