Christmas in Paris
Paris is often compared to an elegant and well-groomed lady who knows the price of her grace. To some, it may seem somewhat frivolous: trendy outfits, expensive perfume, and exquisite jewelry. Although, perhaps, this is her unique charm: Today, the lady is smart as ever – Christmas is coming, in French Noel, with all the nice details of this main holiday of the year. The showcases of Parisian shops become works of art: angels hover in the sky, bells ring in toy churches, and the magic sleigh is carried by Peer Noel.
Many restaurants in Paris give their visitors so-called “Christmas baskets” with a festive set of products. Christmas table in France is unthinkable without foie gras, cheeses, good wine and cake “log”. As a snack – oysters, black caviar, less often – truffles. Buche de Noel – Christmas roll with cream – a must-have dish on a festive table. Once there was a tradition in France to slowly burn a real log in the fireplace for 12 pre-Christmas days, the ash from which was considered the best medicine for many diseases.
This year in the famous Parisian department store on the left bank of the Seine “Le Bon Marche” you can buy a designer Christmas log from the famous confectionery company, made from sketches by Lolita Lempick. Designed for 10 people, a haute-wood log costs 125 euros. However, the participation of fashion designers in the festive design is limited not only and not so much by gastronomy. The decoration of the largest department store in Paris – Galerie Lafayette – was engaged in Jean-Charles Castelbajac. The store looked like a huge palace, in the center of which, under an art deco-style dome, there was a giant Christmas tree decorated with five hundred garlands.
Next door, another large department store, Le Resintemps, celebrates Christmas in English. Noel so crazy – this is the motto of this holiday. In order to create the atmosphere of prim in England in a typical French shop, the facade of the building was decorated in a plaid cell, Guardsmen in fur hats were installed at the door, like Buckingham Palace, and in the shop they opened an English tea room and a traditional English pub.
Thousands of Christmas trees decorate Paris for Christmas. And not only the streets, shops and restaurants, but even the entrances of houses. The decoration of Christmas trees varies from year to year and depends on the fashion prevailing in Paris. For the sixth year in a row, an exhibition of Christmas haute couture has been held at the luxurious Hotel Mouris on Rue de Rivoli. Designers, florists, decorators, jewelers and world famous confectioners present their works here. Each spruce is made in its original style, sometimes with the most incredible fantasies.
This year, Cartier House decorated the Christmas tree with live orchids, Swarovski’s Christmas tree turned out in pale pink tones, studded with sparkling crystals, and on the Meriz brand company tree with cute blue balls housed a symbol of the coming year according to the eastern calendar.
From December 7 to February 1, an ice rink is open on the first floor of the Eiffel Tower at a height of 57 meters, where up to one hundred people can skate at the same time. The experiment started last year was a huge success both among tourists and among Parisians: there were days when more than a thousand people visited the rink! If you have a ticket to the Eiffel Tower, access to the rink is free and skate rental is free. Another equally famous skating rink, appears every year before Christmas on the square in front of the city hall. Since 2001, anyone can skate for free in front of a luxurious building, called the Wedding Cake. Its facade is decorated with 146 statues of famous residents of Paris.
Anyone who wants to celebrate Christmas in a restaurant, book a table for many days in advance. A festive dinner consists, for example, of fresh fin de clair oysters, foie gras with raspberry sauce, Provençal frog leg fillets, Perigord ducks and a must-have Christmas cake for dessert. The restaurant of the deluxe hotel “Bristol”, famous for its cuisin cuisine, offers me the following: consome of black truffles with goose liver, carpaccio of scallops, suprem of pheasant.
Paris is a holiday that is always with you.