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Entries about les halles

Paris: Neighborhood Walk

Beaubourg

Every neighborhood in any city has its own unique atmosphere. My temporary home in Paris is no exception. I currently live on the western edge of the 4th arrondissement in an area known as Beaubourg, a short block away from Paris's town hall which is housed in the building known as L'Hotel de Ville. There are busy shopping streets such as the Rue de Rivoli and Boulevard de Sebastopol that criss-cross the area. But if you turn off the main streets, there are dozens of tiny, winding walkways to explore. There are fun boutiques to discover as well as endless cafes. The Hippy Market is a second-hand shop I stumbled across on one of my walks.
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The most popular destination in the area is the Pompidou Center, a modern art museum named after Georges Pompidou which is most famous for its controversial architecture. It was designed to be inside out. All of the escalators, elevators, and normal building innards are on the outside of the structure. I find the adjacent square and Stravinsky Fountain far more interesting. Named after the composer Igor Stravinsky, colorful sculptures by the artist Niki de Saint Phalle and her husband sit in the water surrounded by the fountain. If you listen, the water emerging from each sculpture is supposed to sound like a Stravinsky composition!!!! Behind the Fountain stands the St. Merri Church which dates back to the 1500s. Catty-corner to the church is a huge mural called Chuuuttt!Ssshhh! I love the juxtaposition of old and new here. The artwork and sculptures side by side with a gothic church just makes me smile.
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There are two cafes where you can sit across from the Stravinsky Fountain and enjoy the view. One is Dame Tartine which has reasonable prices with good food and blackboard specials every day. The other is Creperie Beaubourg which not only serves crepes, but omelettes and salads, as well. If you desire a glass of wine, Dame Tartine is the place to go since the Creperie only serves coffees and soft drinks.
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Posted by teethetrav 07:58 Archived in France Tagged les_halles pomidou_center beaubourg stravinsky_fountain dame_tartine creperie_beaubourg st._merri_church Comments (0)

Paris Markets Part 3

St. Eustache Les Halles

Les Halles was a legendary market that no longer exists. It was once the most popular and thriving market in Paris. The area now is a combination of old and new. The architecturally controversial Pompidou Center straddles one side of this district and an enormous construction project is smack in the middle of Les Halles across from the ancient St. Eustache Church which dates back to the 1500s.
I caught the market on a quiet afternoon. Many of the stands were open, but the vendors weren't even visible. There were clothes stands, fish and meat, and a cheese stand that had a wonderful sample of many different hard and soft cheeses. Of course I bought some along with my baguette. This market is not far from my apartment, so I'll go back for more cheese and see if there are more vendors on a different day. This seemed sparse considering the history and reputation of the original Les Halles.
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The beautiful window displays at E. Dehillerin, an amazing cookware store, were my favorite part of this walk. Sadly, I can only look not buy. But I'm wondering if they ship. I think a copper pot would look perfect in my kitchen.

Posted by teethetrav 05:10 Archived in France Tagged markets paris les_halles paris_markets st._eustace_church st_eustace_market Comments (0)

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