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Parc Monceau: wonderful Parisian neighborhood

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View from our Paris apartment window

I often get asked about where we stay when we go to Paris. My response, “I like to stay in an apartment in different neighborhoods each visit.” It is the best way to really experience Paris.

The Parc Monceau neighborhood was our home on a recent visit to the City of Light. This is at the part of the 8th Arrondissement right near the border of the 17th. It’s not a typical tourist destination.

I loved it. Why?

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It is a real French neighborhood.

The Parc itself has a lot of history. Once a private estate, it became a park in 1861. Filled with funny architectural elements and people exercising and enjoying the park benches. I saw folks walking their dogs and children playing in sandboxes as I meandered around one morning.

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Notice the gates to the park. Charming or what? This area was developed in the late 1800s by wealthy bankers. The homes are stunning, many of them surrounding the park giving the residents a private access to the park on a very grand scale.This reminded me a bit of homes around a golf course.

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Staying in an apartment provides food shopping opportunities

There’s nothing more French than shopping for food.   We shopped for cheese, fruit, bread and wine in the market street nearby.

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The homes are fabulous…..so, French!

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We visited one of the splendid Belle Epoche mansions, now a museum. Musee’ Nissim-de-Camondo. I especially enjoyed seeing the kitchen area, making me think of Downton Abby.

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One of the sad stories about this house is the quote  attributed to the grand daughter of the owner of the house. She lived there as a child. She said, “I was born in a museum,” referring to fact it is loaded with her Grandfather’s collection of fine antiques.  She made this statement just before she was sent to Auswitz. I am glad her Grandfather never knew her fate.

Another mansion nearby available for touring is Musee Jacquemart-Andre….click here for some pictures of that fabulous mansion from the Belle Epoch era.

We enjoyed the Parc Monceau, eating at the local bistros and exploring the neighborhood. This home certainly pops out. It must have been quite controversial when it was built in the midst of all the quintessential limestone French style mansions. It was built in 1926, commissioned by a Chinese Art Dealer.

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I think it typifies what I love about Paris. You never know what you’ll see around the next corner. There’s always a surprise.
We booked our apartment through Haven in Paris. The experience was excellent. I would work with them again.

Following are more scenes from Parc Monceau

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If you like architecture, you might enjoy the DesignDestinations.org blog post about the new Foundation Louis Vuitton. Click here. 

Post Author
Susan J. Smith
Susan's career includes writing for newspapers, lots of community work and a wonderful family life. Now she is enjoying traveling, photography and writing for DesignDestinations and Grand Rapids Magazine. She welcomes you on her journey and appreciates your comments.

Comments

6 Comments
  1. posted by
    Sue Schroder
    Aug 11, 2015 Reply

    Thank you so much for sharing this gem, and your beautiful photos.
    Is it time to go back yet? Sigh 🙂

    • posted by
      Susan J. Smith
      Aug 11, 2015 Reply

      Time for Paris? Anytime!

  2. posted by
    Michelle Slikkers
    Aug 11, 2015 Reply

    Thank you for sharing your experiences in Paris. You have such a gift of being able to put us right there with you! Keep ’em coming my friend!

    • posted by
      Susan J. Smith
      Aug 11, 2015 Reply

      Thanks Michelle, I appreciate your kind words.

  3. posted by
    peggy depersia
    Aug 12, 2015 Reply

    Lovely photos and they really do capture a certain feel for particular aspects of the city. Paris seems to be one of those cities that is so distinctive that you can represent it with a single photo.
    What a pretty little park to have enjoyed.

  4. posted by
    Ann Stevenson
    Aug 15, 2015 Reply

    Thanks for providing another wonderful walk in Paris!

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