10 New Reasons To Travel To Paris This Fall

There are a million and one reasons to visit Paris, but one thing you can be sure of is that you won’t be able to do everything in one stint. So this fall, we’ve done the curation for you, bringing you the very best the city has to offer, including the newest restaurants, just-opened hotels, disruptive art events and experiences, as well as places to relax and reset before setting off again to explore this fascinating city that just keeps on giving, no matter how many times you’ve been.

1. Delve Into The City’s Biggest Art Fair, “Paris+ Par Art Basel”, Which Debuts Next Week

When news broke last January that Paris’ historic FIAC (International Contemporary Art Fair) was being discontinued, it sent a tremor through the art world. When it was announced that the annual event, a staple on the international art circuit, would be part of Art Basel, lumped with its Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong fairs, the French art community was up in arms. Fast-forward to fall and as the inauguration date creeps forward, Paris awaits to see the result.

The inaugural edition (October 20-23) includes 156 galleries from 30 countries and will extend beyond the walls of the temporary Grand Palais Ephémère venue to publicly accessible city-wide installations as part of a program called “Sites”. One of the largest and most ambitious of the 20 artworks scattered around the city, is Polish-born artist Alicja Kwade’s set of spheres in Au cours des Mondes on Place Vendôme. All the details will be announced closer to opening day, but for now, you can read about finalized works on the Paris+ Par Art Basel.

2. Top Up On Light And Color Before Winter Sets In With The Fondation Louis Vuitton’s Blockbuster Show

Flanking the Boulogne woods on the outskirts of the city, is Frank Gehry’s audacious Fondation Louis Vuitton; ultra-contemporary, it was built to look like a glass ship deploying its sails. Inside, the white rooms are airy, giving the viewer the perfect light and space to admire the large, energetic canvases depicting foliage, water, and the emotion of being immersed in nature, of Claude Monet (1840-1926) and Joan Mitchell (1925-1992) in the new show “Monet-Mitchell”. Born 85 years apart, their paths should never have crossed. However, their destinies are tied not by time, but by a physical place, the banks of the River Seine in Normandy.

The show draws parallels between the two artists and their work, which accentuates similarities as well as highlights the distinctive styles of each artist. Mitchell, an abstract impressionist painter from the US moved to Vétheuil, a village close to where Monet lived, meaning both of the artists’ work was steeped in the same landscape. Inspired by the natural surroundings of the Paris region, both artists shared an acute sensitivity to emotion, light and color, the interplay of which forms the basis of their art, and which can be seen in the 60 works on show until February 2, 2023 at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris.

3. Mingle With The World’s Most Creative Culinary Clan As They Return To The City During Paris+

Turning the traditional restaurant experience on its head and breaking it up into immersive pop-up events from Milan to Mexico City, sommelier and restaurateur Luca Pronzato creates offbeat dining experiences in mysterious and often disused spaces you never knew existed, no matter how well you know your city. This month, Pronzato has invited Thomas Graham, previously at Äponem and Noma, now at Le Mermoz restaurant in Paris, to head things up in the kitchen for We Are Ona’s next Paris pop-up on October 19-23 during Paris+ par Art Basel.

Founded in 2019, We Are Ona — “ona” meaning wave in Catalan — isn’t just about the location. It’s a catalyst for empowering young chefs by giving them the opportunity to explore their talent and the freedom to express their creativity. The result of this inspiration powerhouse is pretty special and has become a reference on the restaurant circuit, the chefs serving the highest quality of local and sustainable produce. Drawing an arty crowd from all over the globe, We Are Ona is blossoming into a transient hub where they can convene with like-minded creatives, no matter which art fair they happen to be hopping to next.

4. Get Pampered At The Ritz’s Revamped Spa

After being leased to Chanel for years, the Ritz has reclaimed its spa, renaming it the Ritz Spa & Club, transforming the treatments into holistic journeys and giving it its own private entrance on Place Vendôme, meaning you no longer have to dodge past hap-snappy tourists mingling in the lobby as you slowly surface from a state of post-massage bliss.

Slip through the entrance next to the main hotel doors for a quieter experience where the formerly black and white interiors have been swapped for summery blue tones. Guests can choose one of seven suites named after flowers – for an extra-private experience, ask for the Orchid suite which has its own bathroom and hammam.

Massages start with a short consultation with the massage therapist who assesses your mood, needs and emotional state. You can also opt for a Biologique Recherche facial, but the real specialty of the house is its massages. They focus largely on technique rather than any extra flourishes, which leaves more room for kneading of tired muscles. Ask for Elise who will give you a full rebalancing massage where she uses sweeping, strong strokes to relax the body with a focus on the solar plexus to soothe any emotional distress that might be lingering. Some treatments also include access to the iconic Ritz pool and hammam and sauna tucked in one of the wings but enquire first.

5. Dine With The Grande Dame At These Two New Restaurants With Killer Views

No matter how much Paris changes, updates itself, extends past its ring-road, its number-one landmark remains the Eiffel Tower. It’s a dream for many travelers to see it at least once, and for many locals, the iron lady hasn’t lost a bit of its shimmer, no matter how many times they’ve glimpsed it. So, spending an entire meals with her remains unique, especially now that the Tower’s first-floor bistro’s got shiny new interiors and a Mediterranean menu that’s been revamped by two-star chef Thierry Marx. Unlike the top-floor fine dining restaurant Le Jules Verne, Madame Brasserie’s more laid-back and more affordable. A table with a “Paris view” and three-course menu including champagne and wine at lunch costs 95 euros per person or 175 euros for a more elaborate menu at dinner, and you still get the thrill of climbing up into the most iconic monument in the world.

The second spot to have on your list when next in town, is Bonnie, hospitality group Paris Society’s latest addition. Tucked at the top of the glass-clad SO/ hotel on the banks of the River Seine in the heart of the city, views up here don’t just span the whole of Paris, but thanks to the unique location right on the river and across from the alluring Ile Saint Louis, they are second to none. The views are just as extraordinary from inside, thanks to glass walls that run the entire length of the restaurant, and ingenious mirror ceilings that reflect the Seine below as boats glide across the water. Jordane Arrivetz designed the interiors to be extra warm and cozy with thick retro motif carpets giving the space a hushed private club atmosphere. On the menu, sample dishes like the sea bream ceviche and perfectly cooked turbot fish with a splash of perfect Chassagne-Montrachet.

6. Dance The Night Away In Paris’ Old Red Light District

Slip through the main doors of the Rochechouart restaurant where the sound of traffic gives way to light chatter as a trendy crowd dines on French staples with a twist at white clothed tables in a low-lit room that used to be a dance hall in the roaring twenties. Attached to rooms upstairs and a rooftop bar with one of the city’s most breathtaking views of the Sacré Coeur Basilica in Montmartre, the Carlton Hotel became the Rochechouart as part of the prolific Orso hotel group. A firm fixture on the Parisian hotel and dining scene thanks to architect-duo Festen’s pared-back cinematic retro style, the next step for Orso was to bring the property’s basement bar back to life.

A former hub where the city’s night owls would convene, including a handful of big names from fashion to film and music — U2 headman Bono has supposedly been seen here a few times — you’ll find the entrance to the Mikado, a red door with a neon sign, across the street from Paris’ last surviving gramophone shop and museum. Inside the club, Festen immerses guests in a hushed atmosphere tinged with a red glow coming from Japanese lanterns, meant to recall the allure of opium bars. Guests sit in soft couches arranged behind heavy fringed velour drapes and sip on cocktails before letting the music lead them to the dance floor into the early hours.

7. Take A Trip On The Refurbished Orient Express Before Anyone Else

The first Orient Express trains first saw daylight 140 almost years ago when Georges Nagelmackers imagined a train so luxurious, that it would rival even the best of five-star hotels. Fast-forward to the present day, and the legendary Nostalgie-Istanbul-Orient-Express train will once again carry travelers from Paris to the gateway of Asia.

Due to the growing popularity of air travel, the train’s route was discontinued indefinitely in the eighties before it disappeared. In 2015, its carriages, abandoned for over a decade, were located in eastern Europe during an SCNF (France’s national rail service) inventory and are currently being restored to their former glory by French architect Maxime d’Angeac, as the new owner, hospitality group Accor, prepares to relaunch the high-end train’s journeys, bookable from summer 2023. In the meantime, a free immersive experience “Orient Express Revelation” will take visitors on a journey to the heart of the Orient Express story during Paris+ on October 20-21, which you can book on the event page.

8. Try One Of These Facials For Glow On The Go

For travelers who don’t have time for a full-blown spa experience but need a little pick-me-up, clean skincare brand Seasonly’s new face glow bars will do just the trick. Stop at a Sephora in between meetings or just before dinner for the brand’s skin experts to work their magic on your skin and draw out that perfect dewy complexion in 15 minutes flat, leaving you looking and feeling fabulous.

Skin is cleansed, massaged and hydrated to give cells a boost and get skin glowing and looking healthful and plumper again. There are three massages to choose from: Express treatment, which hones in on fine lines and the contour of the face, Express Glow, perfect for dull, tired looking skin, and the Bespoke treatment which focuses on bags and dark circles under the eyes. Just book your slot online at your nearest Sephora and you’re all set to go.

9. Stay At One Of These New Places To Bed Down

Paris has featured in the top three of most visited cities in the world for years if not decades. So it’s no surprise that its hotel offering keeps on expanding, hoteliers who are masters at reinventing the trade, bringing something new to the table. This season, five hotels are taking the city by storm.

SO/ Paris which has just opened in a forgotten-about pocket right on the banks of the Seine gives its guests plush ultra-contemporary rooms along with some of the most spectacular views of the city that include the bridges straddling the River Seine to the two islands.

Another place to keep your eye on is Too, which is set to open next week and was imagined by Laurent Taïeb, the creator of the much acclaimed Madame Rêve. Tucked at the top of Jean Nouvel’s Duo Towers, two great big glass buildings that lean in towards one another. It’s the highest hotel in the city, which could earn it the top spot for views.

For something a little closer to the ground, the meticulously designed Pavillon Faubourg Saint-Germain opened over the summer on the left bank, giving guests cozy rooms with a restaurant by Thibault Sombardier, a French Top Chef finalist, and a compact Codage spa.

Other hotels of note include the wonderfully alluring Hotel Particulier, a favorite among Hollywood A-listers like Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, hidden behind a gate in a Montmartre back alley, whose five rooms have just got a complete makeover. Ennismore hotel brand Delano, will also be opening an offshoot in Paris’ 8th arrondissement later this year, as will Maisons Pariente (Crillon le Brave, Lou Pinet, Le Coucou) with the Grand Mazarin. Opening soon in the Marais, the owners tapped Swedish star Martin Brudnizki behind some of the world’s most beautiful bar and restaurant interiors, to give their first Paris property the wow-factor.

10.Book One of The Dozens Of New Restaurants Opening This Fall

This fall, a slew of new and exciting places to sit for lunch or dinner have opened their doors, many of which are adding a little life and color to sleepy neigborhoods like the northwestern part of the city.

High up on your list, should be Vive, led by chef David Le Quellec (pictured above), which is adding a little life and color to Ternes, as is Bloom, where Christian Ventura is making plant-based sushi, and Bruno Verjus’s new Cavalieri and Le Petit Rétro by Irwin Durand and three-star Guy Savoy, a 10-minute drive away in the 16th arrondissement. Other places of note are Braise, where everything from fish and meat to vegetables are cooked on embers and served in sleek but laid-back surroundings, top talent Pauline Séné of Fripon fame who’s opened Arboré, as well as cheerful Mediterranean additions like Carmona and Dune, new French outfits like Tetsuya Yoshida’s refined French cuisine at Sphere.

There are also a couple of Japanese restaurants to try like the Izakaya style Jinchan Yokocho and hand-rolled maki bar Hando. If you’re looking for somewhere to eat on the go, then don’t miss Peppe pizza in the hip and happening Pigalle by Peppe Cutrato, European champion pizza chef and Yannick Alléno’s burger joint Père & Fils, as well as Yakuza Sando‘s pretty Japanese style sandwiches.

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