If you’ve been following along on this journey (Helsinki/Tallinn/Riga/Klaipeda/Vilnius), then you know we had Russian Visa issues prior to leaving the US. After the earlier-than-planned exit from Russia and with time left before our scheduled departure back home, the question then became: Where should we go for the remainder of the trip? You now know how the story ended, with four glorious and unplanned days in Paris (runners-up were Vienna, Prague and London).
Other than our honeymoon plus a day trip from Brussels several years ago, we’ve not spent any time in Paris. A big consideration in deciding where to go was rearranging the flight home to Los Angeles.
Happily, I worked with AA and was able to move things around while still in Moscow, maintaining a terrific mileage ticket (85k) flying non-stop from Heathrow to LAX in First Class! Obviously, I did not want to lose that, so we added a Paris-London flight and continued onward. Moscow-Paris offered tons of options, ultimately selecting Lufthansa with a bit of a layover in Frankfurt.
Top: Courtyard; Park Hyatt Place Vendome; Gorgeous weather; Jardin de Tuileries
Bottom: Salade perfection; Les Jalles; Musee d’Orsay
What did we do? Roamed the streets near our Place Vendome hotel, immersed ourselves at the Musee d’Orsay, did a return trip to spectacular Giverny (below), ate at some classic bistros — including Le Grand Colbert (yes, that one — made famous in the movie Something’s Gotta Give), and just had an extraordinary time.
We also had great fun perusing the incredible hotels and their remarkable floral arrangements. I am a serial advance planner, so there’s typically lots of emails back and forth with hotel concierges to make sure nothing is missed. This stay was more about “What do you feel like doing today?” The final day was a win/win, with the hubby going to the Louvre plus scouting the very best place to exchange currency, and I endlessly browsed the stores (strictly for research purposes).
Top: Giverny — tulips!; Wisteria and the Lily Pond at Giverny
Middle: Exquisite purple tulips; Still reaping benefits after so many years!
Bottom: Basilica of the Sacre Coeur in the distance
So another post-tax-season holiday comes to an end. Three weeks of magnificent sights, terrific service, fun with (first-week) traveling companion Julie Shuer, and meeting so many wonderful people. There were oopsies as always:
- What happened to my other pair of jeans?? (Lost somewhere at stop 1 or 2)
- Why are four keys not working on the laptop — it was only a few drops of champagne?
- Why was the hubby the smart one to take a pair of shorts?? (It got warmer than I expected)
- Where the hell were all the band aids I needed for all that walking?? (Can never pack enough)
Minor inconveniences (maybe the computer was a bit more than that). As always, it is a great privilege to explore this incredible world. Final pix below ..
Brasserie Lipp — classic roast chicken and frites and the most scrumptious Napoleon for dessert.
What’s this? The secret entrance to the world’s most reclusive jewelry designer – Paris-based JAR (Joel A. Rosenthal). Not that I would be granted an appointment (even if I could afford it) for it’s a very small and exclusive club that owns his pieces and for whom he creates. But that didn’t stop my wish to find the iconic doorbell to his atelier. The hubby encouraged me not to embarrass myself by bothering to ring. Point taken.
“Cook of the Century” chef Joël Robuchon died on August 6, 2018 at age 73 in Geneva, Switzerland. We’ve been blessed to end three different vacations with a #lastsupper at his glorious #ateliers #hongkong #london #paris #mercibeaucoup
We’ll miss this beauty….
See more Travel with Teri B. here.