If you’re heading to Paris for some serious retail therapy, there are some key areas to stay to avoid wasting any precious shopping time on getting around. To get the most out of your shopping trip consider staying in the Marais or the 6th, 7th, 8th or 9th arrondissements.
The Marais, meaning marsh or swamp, is an historic area of Paris extending over the 3rd and 4th arrondissements. In the 16th and 17th centuries wealthy Parisians built their mansions here, then in the 19th century it became the Jewish quarter. Today, is is a glorious mix of narrow streets and imposing mansions, many of which have been turned into museums and hotels.
If you like to multi-task, the Marais will suit you down to the ground. There’s great shopping around the rue des Francs Bourgeois and rue des Rosiers, fabulous bars and restaurants and plenty of culture with Place des Voges, the Pompidou Centre and the Picasso Museum all waiting to be explored.
For high-end boutiques and the super-chic Bon Marché department store (don’t miss the food hall), the 7th around Sèvres – Babylone is a good starting point.
If that's a bit out of your budget, head towards Saint Germain des Prés in the 6th, just a few streets away, where you'll find a good mix of familiar high street names and smaller boutiques along rue du Four and the streets around St Sulpice. You can shop till you drop – into a seat on a café terrace, and watch the world go by until you're ready to go back for more.
When the weather is bad, or you just want everything under one roof, head for the ‘Grands Boulevards’ in the 9th. Paris’ biggest department stores, Galeries Lafayette and Printemps, can be found on Boulevard Haussman, just behind Palais Garnier, the Opera house.
Then, if you're feeling flush, take a stroll up rue Tronchet to Madeleine in the 8th and give your credit card a bashing in the high-end shops of rue Royale and rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré.
The checked tablecloths, enamelled cast-iron stove and vintage crockery make this little tea room feel just like your grandma’s kitchen – if your grandma was an ancient provincial French one!
Homemade cakes and tarts reinforce the cosy, time-travelling feel.
With one boutique in Le Marais and another one in Lyon, BonneGueule offers men their renowned fashion expertise and promote craftsmanship as well as sustainable, high-quality products.
One of the most famous in Paris, this under-cover market is located in the 3rd arrondissement. The building itself was once a 16th century orphanage where the children wore Christian charity-donated clothes in red, giving the market its name.
If you love not only your French classics, but international fare, this is the place to come with extensive Lebanese, African and Thai cuisines to sample.
Image credits: © Eurostar; © Eurostar; © Thomas Baltes; © Courtesy of Bonne Gueule; © Laura Stevens