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FALL IN LOVE WITH PARIS
Romantic, chic and packed with world-class museums, Paris is an enchanting place! Stay in style at luxury Radisson Blu hotels located right across the city near all the top attractions. Take your pick from an exclusive address on the Champs-Elysées, the prestigious Opera quarter, the upmarket 16th arrondissement of Paris with direct views of the Eiffel tower, family fun at Disneyland Paris or easy access to Charles De Gaulle Airport!
Originally a small Celtic fishing village, Paris has certainly grown since its humble beginnings. France’s capital for more than 700 years, Paris is now the country’s biggest city and its economic, cultural and political centre. It is from here that the most important revolutions in history started and spread. Still, nowadays, when you are walking near the Père Lachaise cemetery or if you go down into the catacombs at Denfert-Rochereau you will be able to see, if you look carefully, traces of the city’s tumultuous history. And since the 17th century in particular, Paris has seen its cultural impact radiate across the entire world, from the literary salons of the Luminaries to the bohemian artists of the Belle Époque. The appeal of the City of Light, with its freedom and magical atmosphere, has never faded.
Culture, the arts and pleasure will greet you in Paris
How is it possible to describe in a few words the richness of Paris? This mythical city is as well known for its culture as for its history, its gastronomy or its architecture. Between its famous museums with their stunning collections and the small, romantic museums hidden in the alleys of Montmartre, without talking about the art galleries of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, your thirst for culture should rapidly be quenched. Parisian monuments are iconic – from Notre-Dame-de-Paris to the Eiffel Tower, as well as the Sacré-Cœur – each revealing its own page of the history books. Between outings, Paris has some of the finest dining establishments in Europe. And there is no greater pleasure than accidentally stumbling across small hidden bistros, each with its own unique style. Satisfaction is 100 % guaranteed.
Practical Paris: everything you need to know
We often say Paris is the centre of France. Technically this isn’t quite true, as the French capital is situated to the north west of the Hexagon. The beautiful city of Lille is an hour’s train ride to the north, and cities such as Lyon and Strasbourg are less than 500km from the capital. The best time to enjoy Paris is in spring when the sun starts to flood the streets and the café terraces start to fill up. In spring you can expect temperatures of about 20 degrees, whereas in winter they rarely rise above 13 degrees on average. Finally, Parisians obviously speak French, but English is understood more and more in and around tourist attractions, particularly in museums where exhibition documentation is translated into several languages.
Enjoy the comfort of Radisson Blu to visit the city
Paris is renowned as one of the most beautiful cities in the world and at Radisson Blu we do everything we can to ensure you make the most of it and have an unforgettable trip. The city is chock full of things to do. Among these, of course: shopping. Paris isn’t the capital of fashion for nothing: the Radisson Blu Champs-Élysées Hotel, housed in the former headquarters of Louis Vuitton, offers direct access to the capital’s most beautiful fashion houses. If you are travelling as a couple, you will appreciate the numerous fine dining restaurants dotted around the capital, such as the AOC Restaurant, featured in the famous Michelin guide and located in the Radisson Blu Paris-Boulogne hotel, on the outskirts of the city near Porte de Saint-Cloud. Finally, a family trip to Disneyland® Paris is a must. For that, the Radisson Blu Hotel Paris, Marne-la-Vallée is located just 10 minutes from the theme park and offers a free shuttle service.
Paris is lucky enough to house some of the finest museums in the world. The Louvre is only 15 minutes’ walk from the Radisson Blu Champs-Élysées hotel, and has 8 departments which go from Ancient Greek and Egyptian artefacts to 19th century paintings. The Egyptian collections are possibly the most impressive, but the 6,000 paintings owned by the museum are also unmissable. Fans of Impressionist painting will be spoiled for choice by the Musée d’Orsay: the greatest art work of the period is housed there. If all that isn’t enough, the Centre Pompidou – with its fascinating architecture – will allow you to discover contemporary art among its successful exhibitions.
Relive the Belle Époque in Montmartre
The nostalgic among us gather at the Galette Wind Mill where impressionist artists such as Renoir used to hang out. Maybe you would like to have a drink at the Lapin Agile with the ghost of Picasso. Others will enjoy strolling through the magical cobblestoned alleys, discovering hidden squares where ivy decorates the steps. Whatever happens, you will not be indifferent to Montmartre. This artistic neighbourhood offers unforgettable walks from the Sacré-Cœur to Dalida Square. It’s a neighbourhood worth losing yourself in, allowing yourself to be guided by the beauty of the ancient houses or stopping in quiet cafés to partake in a favourite Parisian pastime: watching the life of the streets go by.
The Eiffel Tower, as modern as ever
Could we talk about Paris without mentioning the Eiffel Tower? This monument dates from 1889 and was loathed by locals at the time but is now the symbol of the city. Every evening it illuminates Paris with sparkling lights and its revolving lamp sweeps the city. Don’t miss climbing the three floors to the very top to admire the view. The best time to go is in the evening: the lights of the boulevards, the streets and the monuments from that top floor are an unforgettable spectacle. The Radisson Blu Paris-Boulogne Hotel, situated about 20 minutes from the Eiffel Tower, allows you to prolong the pleasure with its bar and jazz concerts.
Exploring Paris the Parisian way
There is nothing more pleasant in Paris than escaping the tourist crowds and wandering the small streets and neighbourhoods that Parisians like to keep to themselves. These hidden treasures are forgotten by the guide books. In the 12th arrondissement, the « Promenade plantée » offers a magnificent family walk between amongst the cherry trees, far from the crowds. You could even cycle down to the Bois de Vincennes. If you are looking for quirky bars and sophisticated boutiques, there is no better place than the Saint-Martin Canal, where you can skim pebbles on the water like Amélie Poulain and enjoy fashionable waterside restaurants.
Even though, other than its bistros, Paris doesn’t have its own signature gastronomy, you will be able to find cuisine from every region of the world here. Paris has turned its diversity into a cultural triumph, and you will be able to go from flavours of the Middle East to India and the Caribbean, enjoying every morsel. Of course French cuisine, from every region from north to south west and everything in between, is well represented. There are many top class restaurants and a unique concentration of Michelin starred restaurants. You can’t miss them, they are in every district of the city, from the 15th to the 18th arrondissements, including the famous riverside restaurants on the Seine.
Have a drink in Paris
Parisian cafés have a worldwide reputation. Wherever you are in Paris you will see lone Parisians working or reading on café terraces, or groups of friends or colleagues meeting for post-work drinks and a chat. As well as the cafés, Paris has plenty of quirky and fashionable bars. In Saint-Germain-des-Prés, you will discover literary cafés once frequented Sartre and Beauvoir. As you approach the Place de la République you will walk through livelier neighbourhoods, where bars overflow onto the streets every evening.
Where to go out?
Parisian nightlife is legendary: the city has bars, pubs and clubs catering for all styles and clientele. In the 10th arrondissement, right in the city centre, you will find popular night clubs where you can dance to French music from the 80s to more current hits. Towards Oberkampf and République you will find more fashionable clubs which stay open much later. The best electronic music can be found in the neighbourhoods of Belleville and Gambetta, in the north. Finally, head for the Champs-Élysées to gain entry to the most iconic clubs of the capital such as the Baron or the Régine.
Parisian culture is a world of its own, and the Parisian calendar is packed with events. If you like fashion, don’t miss the Parisian Fashion Week which has taken place every six months since 1973 and remains the most important of the international fashion weeks. In summer you will also be able to enjoy Paris Plages, an event which transforms the banks of the River Seine into beaches with plenty of family-friendly activities. Sports fans will enjoy visiting Paris during the Roland-Garros tennis tournament in May, which is played out just minutes from Radisson Blu Paris-Boulogne hotel. But whenever you come to Paris there will always be a show, movie or concert to discover.
40 minutes by car from Paris (or 30 minutes from the Radisson Blu Paris-Boulogne Hotel) and easily accessible by public transport, the palace of Versailles is a must-see for anyone visiting Paris. The former residence of the Sun King is an ostentatious monument, a unique architectural folly. Home to kings until 1789, the palace and grounds cover 815 hectares. The visit starts in the palace itself, with the grand apartments belonging to the King, the King’s bedroom and then the Queen’s apartments. Then you walk along the opulent passage way of the famous Hall of Mirrors. The visit then takes you into the palace gardens, created by the great André Le Nôtre, a true work of art which required the work of thousands of men. In summer these gardens host magnificent sound and light shows which transform the place into a fairy-tale setting.
Disneyland® Paris, a paradise for children
To the east of Paris Disneyland® is a family theme park that both children and parents will enjoy. From the Radisson Blu Hotel Paris, Marne-la-Vallée there are free shuttle buses to the theme park. The park itself is divided into different sections, including Fantasyland, Discoveryland and Adventureland, each with shows featuring the main Disney® characters, such as Mickey or Dingo. Thrill seekers will not be disappointed, especially if they go to the neighbouring park, the Walt Disney Studios® and its particularly impressive rollercoasters.
Giverny, inspiration for the impressionists
Just an hour from Paris, Giverny is a true haven of peace where the impressionist painters used to come to relax and paint. Claude Monet, one of the greatest painters of the period, had a house there with gardens you can visit: this is where he painted his famous waterlilies. His small house is also open to visitors and houses many paintings, both by Monet and his friends. Take yourself off for a romantic stroll in the surrounding area, among the Norman fields and half-timbered houses. This is a poetic, peaceful break that you will really appreciate before returning to the hubbub of Paris.
Enjoy the charming town of Boulogne-Billancourt
Just a few minutes from the Radisson Blu Paris Boulogne hotel, the town of Boulogne Billancourt has numerous points of interest allowing for a break from the bustle of Parisian life. This is an opportunity to stroll around the Albert Khan garden and make the most of its varied cultural activities: exhibitions and museums are waiting to be discovered by wandering through its flower-bedecked alleys. Not far away, the Bois de Boulogne presents some particularly magical moments: long walks or bike rides, interspersed with delicious picnics.
And after all these discoveries, come back to the Radisson Blu Hotel Paris Boulogne for a relaxing break and admire the newly renovated lobby with its majestic copper canopy. Discover more about it on our Design Talks page