if you didn’t know already, paris is split into areas called arrondissements. and everyone has their favorites. some love the 1st for the louvre, others are enamored with the eiffel tour in the 7th, and of course any fan of amelie is obsessed with montmartre in the 18th.
but me? i like the 11th. specifically, the nation metro stop. way out in the east side where there aren’t any museums or famous monuments to see. which makes it paris without tourists. i’m very selfish and i don’t like sharing with non-parisians that i’m not friends with :)
an extra bonus is that nation has 5 different lines that meet here, which makes getting around so much easier.
and i just have to show you the apartment that i rented for a week.
i found it through craigslist, from a lovely lady who I shall call H. and although craigslist might have a bad rep at times, without the riskiness you might lose out on something wonderful… but still, always be careful + ask for references + run at the first sign of something fishy + have a backup hotel nearby in case something goes wrong. but above all, just use your common sense.
the apartment was so perfect. not only was it very french, but it had so many personal touches from H’s travels and interests – exactly what makes a home feel like home!
H even had tons of paris guidebooks and brochures for me to dig through. just look at that pile of papers!
bed = sorry i’m not very good at making beds, but doesn’t it still look so comfortable?
and H has way too many adorable plates. which were used to hold all the crumbs that are made when one eats a croissant. and lovely cups. which were used for lots of orange juice drinking, as i need my vitamin C!
but the best part was being a few steps away from chez prosper, my #1 favorite restaurant in paris. i might note i have two #1’s because they are equally amazing and i couldn’t pick one over the other. however, the other one i love is waaay on the other side of town and requires a metro ride home, and i like to walk home after a nice meal. it just feels better, that's all.
but aside from actually eating here and tasting the deliciously enormous salads, experiencing the prompt and nice service from the waiters, and savoring the oh-so-delicious poire belle-hélène… this is how i knew that chez prosper would be a good restaurant:
1. It was always crammed with people (always. always. you needed to squeeze in and out of here. emphasis on squeeze.)
2. No english translation on the menu (you know who they are really catering too.)
3. No photos of food on the menu (they don’t need to superficially entice you.)
do i need to explain this? i don’t think so. but i will, anyway. anywhere in paris is walking distance to a delicious boulangerie. but this one… the la fournée d'augustine, was awarded a gold medal for best baguette in 2004. so chewy, so good, so perfect. and i took advantage of being near it. many times. in fact, it’s a good thing i don’t live permanently at nation… but while i was there, i was living happily on the fluffiest cloud ever.
there was also the fact that i lived right next to a grocery store, a department store, a tri-weekly market, etc, etc, and i can’t write anymore because i will become sad thinking about not being there!
however, i’m only one hour away. i’ll be back, no question.
posted by cathy at 11:03 PM in evreux about the most adorable apartment ever that she rented in paris about two weeks ago.