The fashion-world’s capital is currently flaunting its flair with events (Haute Couture Week struts across runways July 4 through 7), the new Galerie Dior – a museum, boutique, fine-dining restaurant, and café at the fashion house’s remodeled headquarters – and a number of highly anticipated openings to help refresh wardrobes. After standing shuttered for 16 years, La Samaritaine department store reopened with a painstaking restoration – peacock frescoes, gold-leaf-covered mosaic tiles, soaring wrought-iron staircases, and more – from its new owner, French luxury conglomerate LVMH. The 1870 art nouveau landmark has never looked so glamorous (nor have the outfits and accessories from its 650 luxury brands). Not to be outshone, Galeries Lafayette Haussmann has refurbished its iconic soaring glass-dome ceiling. And for those who want to catch more than next season’s looks, Palais Galliera joined the makeover trend, doubling its space to showcase its 200,000-piece collection of French fashion. Paris, as the displays in the new vaulted rooms show, never goes out of style.
On the top floor of the eighteenth-century Bourse de Commerce – once a commodities exchange for grains, now home to the Pinault Collection of contemporary art – Les Halles aux Grains, under the stewardship of father-and-son chefs Michel and Sébastien Bras, serves refined cuisine based on grains and seeds.
Tucked into the rippling-glass facade on the back of La Samaritaine, Ernest puts new spins on classics, such as mushroom risotto with hazelnuts and a foam of aged Comté cheese.
The Musée d’Art Moderne’s Forest has a dazzling riverside summer terrace, but it’s inside among climbing foliage and projections on the exposed cement walls that diners fully experience chef Julien Sebbag’s underground aesthetic. Plants are the center of his seasonal, local, and creative menu with Middle Eastern accents.
Slide into an orange leather booth for a predinner drink at Brasserie Dubillot, where every cocktail is prepared with 100 percent French alcohol. Don’t miss its signature spritz, with pét-nat sparkling wine and Pampelle ruby red grapefruit aperitif.
With sumptuous decor by Dior Maison artistic director Cordelia de Castellane, the recently opened Café Lapérouse, just off Place de la Concorde, has become one of the chicest spots in Paris for a drink.
From the Hermès global flagship to Alexander McQueen, virtually every major luxury fashion brand has an outpost around Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré. None are more famous than the original Chanel store, just behind the Ritz Paris, where Coco Chanel lived in a suite for 34 years.
Up-and-coming designers, though, are more likely to be found in concept shops such as Merci in the Marais. Visitors find plenty of clothing and accessories on its three floors, but don’t bypass the home goods.
Head to Babel, facing Canal Saint-Martin, for pieces by young French designers as well as vintage clothing, antiques, and jewelry. Watch for its “pop-upcycling” events, featuring handmade, upcycled fashion from Paris.
Facing the Pont Neuf on the riverfront side of La Samaritaine, the new Cheval Blanc Paris has just 72 rooms and suites. They go quickly, but non-hotel guests can still enjoy its fashionable seventh-floor Le Tout-Paris brasserie-cum-cocktail bar and the Dior Spa. Virtuoso travelers receive private round-trip airport transfers, breakfast daily, and fast-track customs.
Such was the grandeur of the InterContinental Paris Le Grand that when Empress Eugénie inaugurated the hotel in 1862, she said it reminded her of her royal residence. A 2021 refurbishment returned the regal sparkle to the 470 Second Empire-style rooms and legendary Café de la Paix. Virtuoso travelers receive breakfast daily and Club Lounge access.
“Two of my favorite shops in Paris are in Palais Royal: Serge Lutens for perfumes and French designer Jérôme L’Hullier’s boutique.”