life on pine



It's a tough language – I studied it for quite some time and often still struggle to fully communicate with locals. If you're willing to "study" before you leave – Duolingo is a free [and fun!] option. One phrase that I think is important to know is:

  • I'm sorry, I do not speak French, do you speak English? – Je suis desole, je ne parle pa français. Parlez vous anglais?  
    • This is important because while it maybe be obvious that you don't speak French, many locals will appreciate your effort and likely be friendlier to you. 
  • This silly video is also helpful to learn a few phrases: Top 25 French phrases to know


Airbnb Paris has some of the coolest airbnb's EVER -- see my wishlist here

Hotel Paradis Cute and charming boutique hotel that is walkable or bikeable to almost everything, with impeccable design detail. $115/night

C.O.Q Hotel Looks funky and awesome. $84/night

Hotel Amour Boutique hotel in the once very sketchy red-light district, the Pigalle neighborhood is quickly becoming cool again.


Holy Belly A perfect place to start your day with coffee and breakfast.

Clamato Fish and shellfish served on small tapas style plates, no reservations. [11eme] 

Septime If you're going to try one fancy michelin-starred restaurant, this is the one. [11eme]

David Toutain Dishes inspired by nature where fresh vegetables and herbs play a beautiful role.

Frenchie // Frenchie to go Comfort food with a French twist. While Frenchie is almost impossible to book, FTG is in the same alley, in a more casual setting or grab it to-go for a park bench picnic. 

Entrecote If you're a steak frites fan, this is your jam! They have nothing else on the menu, and you'll likely have to wait in line for a bit. 

Big Mamma Authentic Italian with a relaxed trattoria vibe, everything comes fresh from Italy and this place is always busy.

Kunitoraya Japanese kanteen style restaurant specializing in authentic noodles and tapas. Large floor to ceiling windows open up on warmer days. 

Verjus Intimate restaurant + wine bar.

Mama Shelter Funky and cozy decor with a menu serving a mix of French & Italian. 

Hotel du Nord I only really loved coming here when I could snag a coveted patio seat. 

Le Refuge de Fondue Rowdy fondue spot in Montmarte. This spot is not so famous for their food as they are for their atmosphere. Very small communal tables, wine served in baby bottles, and young people looking to party.



Boot Cafe Small storefront in an old boot repair shop. "This coffee is made for walking" is displayed on the window, as it is not meant to sit and hang. [3eme]

10 Belles Delicious coffee and fresh baked pastries + small lunch items. [10 eme]

Le Poutch Awesome coffee shop, brunch spot and general hangout. [10eme]  

Fondation Cafe Bright, Scandinavian inspired small local hotspot. [3eme]

Telescope Cafe Cozy and charming tucked away shop, crowded with locals and tourists alike. [1eme]

Fragments Rustic, unpretentious space and warm atmosphere. [3eme]


Candelaria Authentic Mexican taqueria with world class cocktails.

La Mary Celeste Cozy and fun atmosphere paired with unique drinks and wonderful food menu.

Lockwood Coffee by day, cocktails by night.

La Mary Celeste Craft style drinks and [very] small bites.

Little Red Door Colorful decor, friendly ambiance, and killer mixed drinks

Shake n' Smash Fancier interior and takes reservations. 

Le Calbar Cool vibes, fun menu and a very friendly staff.

Hotel Costes Worth popping in if you're in the mood for an extra fancy paris-y / scene-y cocktail. This spot is famous for their swanky vibes and great music

Cave L'Incognito Really cool small wine & beer spot while you wait for your table at Septime or Clamato.


    Paris is full of wonderful shopping – be it high end, hole in the wall, department store, vintage, antique ... if you're patient and let yourself explore you'll come upon exactly what you're interested in.

    Merci Fashion, interiors, food and coffee.

    Astier de Villatte Handmade pottery store.

    Buly Beautiful French perfume and beauty shop filled with soaps, candles, essential oils all wrapped in exquisite packaging.

    Flea Market One of the best in the world, but only Friday - Sunday. More information on how to find it and when to go can be found here.

    City Pharma In the Saint Germain neighborhood, this french pharmacy has all of the best cosmetic products at a lower price than the rest of the pharmacies and is famous among locals [it will be packed any time of day!]. biafine, biafine with SPF, A313 & bioderma facewash are some of my favorites. 


    Boulevard St. Germain One of my favorite neighborhoods in Paris  – a picturesque street filled with shopping, sweet treats and the beautiful jardin du luxembourg.

    Montmartre & Sacre Coeur This was the neighborhood I lived in. Beware that this is a hill-y part of Paris with a lot of stairs – which also leads to beautiful views and a well deserved crepe. 

    La Marais Filled with charm and cobblestone streets, and many delicious bars and restaurants.

    Rue St. Honore One street over from Rue de Rivoli, beautiful architecture and fun to wander. 

    Parc de Monceau A beautiful park to eat a baguette and drink a bottle of wine.

    The Louvre An obvious suggestion but worth seeing if you've never been – go right when they open to avoid crowds...afterwards wander the Tuleries Garden.

    Mussee D'Orsay Personal favorite art museum, worth visiting even for just the architecture. 

    Versailles This takes about a full day, but is really worth seeing if you have enough time.

    PompidouGeorges The food here is much too expensive in my opinion, but their view is unbeatable. Definitely worth coming for a drink. 

    Place des Vosges Really cute park in the trendy Le Marais part of town.