Our apartment for the month is in such a great location in the 2nd arrondissement. We are an easy walk to Paris’ beautiful Opera Garnier, the grand department store Galleries Lafayette, the Palais Royal, the Louvre and Sacre Couer.
In the first week, we have walked all over discovering our neighborhood and what it has to offer. So many beautiful buildings, great cafes, restaurants, everything that makes each Paris neighborhood so unique. But my favorite thing about the 2nd arrondissement has to be the covered passages between buildings.
In the 18th century, parts of Paris were connected via covered passages. These galleries were a new idea, really the beginning of the modern day shopping mall. But in addition to providing beautiful window shopping, the glass covered passages protected Parisians from the elements, including cold, rain, dark and the aroma of the lovely Paris streets that at that time, had open sewers. Fortunately for us, our apartment is situated right at the beginning of one of the oldest passages in Paris: Passage des Panoramas. A lovely walk in any direction the passages are filled with trinket shops, stamps, vintage toys, antiques, artists and one delicious smelling restaurant after another.
We are a block or two from the Bourse, the French Stock Exchange. Just a few minutes further towards the Louvre are Galleries Vivienne and Colbert – the most rehabilitated passages I have seen. Stunning walkways filled with period details and charm. This walk takes us to the first arrondissement, the gardens of the Palais Royal and then onto the Louvre.
Our neighborhood, like so many others exudes charm from Paris past.