Paris is obviously known for the culture, history, art and fashion but there's a cheeky, coquettish side to it that I love the sound of. In my mind, this involves heavy use of eyeliner, sashaying down the street and exclaiming things like "zut alors!"
A trip to Paris came about because my wonderful best friend who I affectionately call "the wife" organised a surprise holiday for my 30th birthday. The destination after months of planning was finally revealed at my birthday extravaganza in an elaborate manner that included a multitude of my favourite things including a jigsaw puzzle, Ryan Reynolds and my lovely friends who surprised me by also coming along.
I've been to Paris a couple of times but the last time was 7 years ago when I was a university student who just about scraped together enough euros together for the trip.
Having spotted my first French looking item, I made my friend take a photo of me to prove how I totally blend in with the Parisians
This time, it's pretty cool to have more money, not to mention that my friends also paid for me to do all sorts of fun things there as my birthday presents. On the first night in Paris (my actual birthday), we went to see the infamous Moulin Rouge show; a glittering extravaganza that took me a bit by surprise more than the general nakedness.
The queue to get in was hell long
An incrediblyreathtaking building. Not allowed to take photos inside so..shhh
Posing by the locks before they completely disappear
The Louvre is so much more beautiful than I remembered, not to mention how lucky I was with the weather!
One of the most delicious desserts I've had (at Laduree of course), a raspberry and lychee meringue thing (technical term)
The happiest place on earth...as I can verify
My fiesta is falling apart so I've found my replacement
At the stunning Palais Garnier and a kind of successful box seat selfie during the interval
A "proper" ballet with tutus, a prima ballerina, tiaras and old school dancing
I love how even though I've been twice, there are still things I haven't seen / been to such as the stunning jardin du Luxembourg which I saw on my last day in Paris
The critical thing was finding somewhere to go to cocktails (although I have to say I've been impressed with how much champagne we had been drinking...oh to the good life) and I discovered a little gem in Cafe Bonnie in time out. If Bonnie was a real girl, I hope she has a pixie haircut, doesn't get out of bed before midday and wears a trench coat.
It's a cute and tiny little place which was not too far away from where we were staying (and was also near Canal Saint-Martin which appears to be where all the trendy Parisian students seem to be hanging out) and is just as quirky as what I thought it would be. The place is freaking cuteness with snow white canvas on the wall, fairy lights and people strolling around with flower necklace. I tried de Nain Jeune which sounded like a summery cocktail. Not all their drinks were as cute as the wife had one which was just pure alcohol. Took some working through. We were probably a little too dressy for the place but it's definitely a great place to have a laugh with friends.
Paris was an amazing city to turn 30 in and even more beautiful than I remember. I was not only so lucky with the amazing weather but also my fantastic friends who went to a great deal of effort to make sure I had probably the best birthday ever.
Filmed on my last night in Paris at midnight...almost sounds poetic.