This New Year's Eve, Dimitra, the founder & CCO of Galleria Armadoro, along with her two boys, ventured to Paris, a city renowned for its timeless beauty and cultural richness.
Their visit was a delightful blend of the city's historic charm and contemporary vibrancy, exploring everything from hidden cafes to the bustling fashion boutiques.
Dimitra now shares her unique experience and personal favourites from this journey.
In this guide, you'll discover her top picks and tips for anyone looking to capture the essence of Paris.
From serene strolls along the Seine to uncovering the city's lesser-known treasures, this is Paris as seen through Dimitra's eyes.
As I shared glimpses of our Parisian adventure on my Instagram stories and feed, I realised the beauty of Paris is too vast to be captured in just a few posts.
So, here I am, offering you a more detailed guide to what I consider the most beautiful city on Earth.
This trip was especially memorable as I travelled with my two children, who were experiencing Paris for the first time.
Witnessing their awe and excitement as they discovered the wonders of this city was truly special.
To make it easy to navigate, I've broken down my recommendations into three key sections: EAT, VISIT, and SHOP.
Each category is filled with my personal favourites and hidden gems that made our Parisian journey unforgettable.
At Buvette Paris, we started each morning with the kind of breakfast that turns into a daily ritual. My love affair with Buvette began in New York, drawn in by its irresistible vibe and outstanding food. Their croques and waffle sandwiches? Simply sublime. The tarte tatin and yoghurt parfait granola are must-tries, and the coffee – coming from a coffee aficionado – is exceptional. It's more than just breakfast; it's a slice of Parisian life, and absolutely unmissable.
PINK MAMA (@pinkmamma_paris)
At Pink Mamma in Pigalle, you'll find an Italian haven that's as vibrant in its interiors as it is in its flavours. This place is a gem, with an atmosphere that's just electric. Getting a table here can feel like winning the lottery – it's tough, even if you try booking months ahead. But trust me, it's worth the wait. If you're patient enough, you might just snag a spot.
Make sure to head to the top floor. It's like stepping into a magical indoor patio, where the ambiance is as delightful as the food.
If you find yourself wandering near the Louvre, make a point to visit LouLou at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs garden. It's an Italian restaurant that perfectly captures the essence of Paris. The ruffle pizza here is a must-try, striking the right balance of flavour and finesse. And the tiramisu? It's not just a dessert, it's an experience, generously portioned and decadently delicious.
Girafe, located within a stone's throw of the Eiffel Tower, offers an experience that is as visually stunning as it is gastronomically satisfying. Whether you choose to dine in the main restaurant on the ground floor or opt for the exclusivity of the suite, the views of the Eiffel Tower, especially at night, are simply breathtaking.
The restaurant's design is both elegant and inviting, creating an ambiance that's as much a draw as the food itself. It's no wonder Girafe has become a hotspot for celebrities.
LE BON GEORGES (@le_bon_georges)
Le Bon Georges, tucked away in the vibrant Pigalle area, delivered the best meal we had in Paris, hands down. It's a treasure trove for anyone who savours classic, traditional French cuisine. The bison filet is a must for meat enthusiasts; And the foie gras? Simply sublime. Each dish here is a testament to the culinary finesse that French cooking is renowned for.
This charming bistro, with its warm and inviting atmosphere, captures the essence of Parisian dining at its finest.
Ralph's, nestled in the chic Saint Germain neighborhood, is an absolute classic for anyone visiting Paris. Whether you're stopping by for a coffee, lunch, or dinner, it offers a unique blend of American cuisine with a Parisian twist. The burger here is a standout, perfectly cooked and satisfying in every bite. And for a sweet treat, the caramel popcorn is a delightful surprise.
The real charm of Ralph's, however, comes alive in the warmer months when you can dine in their outdoor patio. It's a serene spot, ideal for soaking up the ambiance of one of Paris's most fashionable areas.
Sacré-Cœur at Night
The first on my son's list is the Sacré-Cœur, visited at night. The crowds thin, leaving a tranquil atmosphere to take in the breathtaking views of Paris from the Montmartre hilltop. He was absolutely in awe of the city's beauty under the moonlight.
Flâner in Paris
There's a special French verb for wandering without purpose – 'flâner. This approach, exploring without a set plan, allowed us to truly absorb the city's captivating charm and discover its hidden treasures organically.
Of course, the Louvre was a must-visit. His highlight? The Nike of Samothrace. As a proud Greek, this piece resonated deeply with him. It's a testament to the timeless appeal of the museum's vast collection.
The Eiffel Tower
Yes, it's a tourist staple, but it's marvelous all the same. My advice? Skip the lines to fully appreciate its splendour. Seeing it through his eyes reminded me of its iconic status.
Perfume Shopping at La Samaritaine
We all appreciate a good scent in our family, and perfume shopping at La Samaritaine was a delightful experience. It's a unique way to remember Paris.
Pro Tips for the Louvre and how to skip the lines
Buy Tickets Online: To avoid long lines, purchase your tickets ahead of time online. And if you're an EU resident under 25, it's free!
- Alternate Entrance: Don't go through the Pyramid entrance. Instead, head down to the Carousel du Louvre and enter from there. The lines are significantly shorter, and you'll be grateful for the time saved.
A recent addition by LVMH, La Samaritaine is a must-visit for shopping enthusiasts. The perfume section here is exceptional, offering an array of captivating scents that cater to every preference.
An all-time favourite, Printemps is a shopper's paradise. Don't miss the Paul Smith café on the ground floor – it's the perfect spot to relax and soak up the ambiance after some retail therapy.
Santa Maria Novella
For lovers of Italian fragrances, the Santa Maria Novella store on Saint Honoré is a destination in itself. The store's elegance matches the exquisite quality of its perfumes, making it a memorable stop. My favs: Melograno and Alba di Seoul.
Ex Nihilo on Saint Honoré
Another gem on Saint Honoré is Ex Nihilo, a haven for perfume enthusiasts. Here, the art of fragrance is celebrated with a diverse and sophisticated collection. Don't miss my fav: Fleur Narcotique.
Even if you don't plan to make a purchase, a visit to Hermès is essential. More than a store, it's a landmark of Parisian luxury, showcasing the pinnacle of craftsmanship and style.
The hoops I found myself reaching for the most were the 'Chubby,' but I also loved mixing in the 'Laylas,' both mini and baby 'Darla,' and the 4cm 'Naomis,' perfectly accented with the 'Lucca' ear cuff.
It's all about creating a unique ear story that speaks volumes.
For my neck, I stuck with my go-to 'Neckstory' – the 'Catalina' pre-layered set, which adds instant elegance. I also wore the 'Lara Dots' charm along with the box chain, the 'Puffed Heart' necklace, and my personal favourite, the 'Gothic Initial' necklace. It's a blend that's both chic and deeply personal.