Stories & Histories

In Review: The Grand Pigalle Hotel in Paris

  Situated in South Pigalle, a formerly seedy Parisian district that’s recently been colonized by hipsters, foodies and fashionistas, the Grand Pigalle Hotel has only been open since 2015. Yet it’s quickly become […]

Inside La Coupole, a Montparnasse Brasserie Haunted With Artistic History

  Referring to the legendary Parisian brasserie on Boulevard de Montparnasse, French historian Georges Viaud once remarked: “If the tables [here] could talk, they would tell the story of La Coupole’s role in […]

Belleville artists' studios open house days/ Ateliers d'artistes de Belleville Portes Ouvertes

Belleville Artists’ Open Studios: Get a Glimpse of Local Creation

Every year in late spring, over 200 artists working and living in Paris’ northeastern Belleville neighborhood open their studios for a few days to the general public. The Portes Ouvertes (open doors) event takes place […]

Inside the 104 (Cent-Quatre), a Vibrant Contemporary Arts Hub in Paris

A fascinating and important branch in the Parisian culture scene, the 104 (Le Cent Quatre) is a vast communal art center in Paris’ remote 19th arrondissement. This sprawling artistic hub and community center– […]

The history of French macarons is a disputed, and fascinating, one.

A Short History of French Macarons, From Saint-Emilion to Paris

On a recent trip to the fortified medieval town of Saint-Emilion, my partner and I stayed in a lovely B&B plunged in the middle of the vineyards, outside the city walls. Our amiable […]

Never get in a Paris taxi without a meter and an illuminated rooftop sign.

Paris Airport Taxis: How to Use Them (& Avoid the Bad Ones)

I still remember my first bad taxi ride from Charles de Gaulle Airport. I was returning home from a visit with family in California, lugging around suitcases so heavy I thought I might […]

PARIS-LOVES-VINYL-6

Paris Loves Vinyl: The Coveted Collectors’ Event Returns in February

Do you routinely lament the poor sound quality of MP3s and other digital music formats, as your spouse or friends groan at your predictable rant? Do you pine after the smell, touch, and […]

In Review: Lapérouse, a Romantic Paris Restaurant With History Galore

First opened in 1766 as “La Maison Lapérouse”, this distinguished restaurant and bar situated smack on the banks of the Seine is a favorite spot for well-heeled literary and artistic types. It’s a place […]

An author signs a book for a reader at the Salon du Livre in Paris (Paris Book Fair)

The Paris Book Fair (Salon du Livre): Why to Visit & Details for 2019

One of the rare trade shows in the French capital to attract both the general public and professionals, the annual Salon du Livre/Paris Book Fair brings dozens of renowned authors and thousands of […]

It would take centuries to complete the stunning Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris.It would take centuries to complete the stunning Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris.

The 10 Best Things to Do in Paris on Your First Visit

At Paris Unlocked, we tend to focus coverage on lesser-known corners of the French capital, and encourage readers to look well beyond the obvious and the wildly popular. But when you’re visiting Paris […]

Live music at La Bellevilloise in Paris . Image credit: Official FB page

Nightlife Notes: La Bellevilloise, for Laid-Back Drinks & Live Music in Paris

  Ever since moving to the northeastern side of Paris, I’d been curious to give La Bellevilloise a try, having heard that it’s a closely-guarded favorite for a night out among locals of […]

Vincent Van Gogh Starry Night exhibit at the Atelier des Lumières digital art museum in Paris

In Review: Atelier des Lumières, The First (All)-Digital Art Museum in Paris

When I first heard that an all-digital art museum and cultural space called the Atelier des Lumières would be opening its doors in Paris sometime in 2018, I was more than a little […]

Tonka bean and chocolate eclair at the patisserie included on the Eating Europe tour. Image: Courtney Traub/All rights reserved.

In Review: Eating Europe’s “Hip Eats and Backstreets” Tour of Paris

I’ll start by saying this: If there’s any food tour that you should take on an empty stomach, it’s this one. The “Hip Eats and Backstreets” tour of Paris from Eating Europe isn’t one that […]

Edith Piaf was born in Paris; for fans of "la mome", there are several key sites to see in the French capital. Image credit: Piano Piano/Creative Commons 2.0

Seeking Edith Piaf in Paris? Visit These 4 Places

Affectionately dubbed “the little sparrow” and “la môme” (the kid) in France, Edith Piaf is a musical legend who has (rather surprisingly?) resonated with successive generations of listeners. Thanks in part to Olivier Dahan’s […]

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