A fashion lover’s guide to Paris: the must-see addresses

There is a very special relationship between Paris and fashion, which dates back to the 18th century, specifically to the reign of Louis XIV, who was a lover of luxury garments. Thanks to the money the monarchs accumulated, they could hire the most famous couturiers of the time to design their costumes. 

Subsequently, the fashions worn by the court began to be copied in the streets of Paris, and little by little the curiosity to know what the next designs would be like was awakened. In this way the capital of the French was becoming what it is today: the epicenter of fashion, with the concepts of elegance, glamor and exquisiteness. 

So much so that there is the famous Golden Triangle in the 8th arrondissement, formed by the avenues of Montaigne, Avenue des Champs Elysées and Avenue Georges-V; places that are a must for lovers of Parisian fashion. In these areas are located the boutiques of the most famous designers such as Dior, Chanel, Gucci, Prada, Givenchy, Louis Vuitton, Yves Saint Laurent, among others. 

But there are also in the street of Faubourg Saint-Honoré and its surroundings, such as the Place de Madeleine or the Place de la Concorde. Likewise, in the recently opened Galeries Lafayette on the Champs Elysées, offering the public the high-level concept of major brand designers and fashion; considered among the avant-garde of the moment. 

Besides fashion, what else does the 8th arrondissement of Paris have to offer?

In the 8th arrondissement are located, towards the right bank of the Seine, the most prestigious addresses of luxury and haute couture, as well as very diverse historical and cultural sites. It is a very attractive district that attracts many visitors. Among the most iconic places are 6 palaces: the Plaza Athénée, the Four Seasons Hotel George V, Le Bristol, the Royal Monceau Raffles, Réserve Paris and the Hôtel de Crillon. 

There are also two 5-star hotels: the Hôtel Barriére Le Fouquet’s and the Prince de Galles. There are also numerous restaurants with Michelin-starred chefs, monuments and museums, such as the Jacquemart Museum, the Grand Palais and the Petit Palais. Of course, the Champs Elysees, which stretch from the Place de l’Etoile to the Place de la Concorde, at the Arc de Triomphe.

So, we can see that it is a very prestigious district for fashion lovers. In these places there is much to see, learn or simply delight in all this variety. 

The famous Paris Fashion Week or Paris Fashion Week:

We cannot forget the very well known Paris Fashion Week or Paris Fashion Week, which is part of the 4 world fashion weeks. It is part of an annual calendar that starts with the New York Fashion Week, followed by London, then Milan and finally the French capital.

This celebration is usually held twice a year and lasts 7 days each. Imagine all that time to have the opportunity to enjoy the main brands, which present their collections, as well as the trends of the moment, which have marked the spring/summer and autumn/winter. 

The dates for the start of these weeks are determined by the French Fashion Federation, and this year the spring/summer season was already held in July. Now the autumn/winter season will take place from September 26th to October 4th; a great show of haute couture. 

Also, this summer, the men’s fashion week was held in June, followed by the haute couture week in July. Participating in these interesting weeks were Givenchy, Balenciaga, Louis Vuitton, Kenzo, Stella Mc Cartney, among others. 

Now, where do these Fashion Week events take place? Since 1973 they have been held in different places. But many of them are centered in the 1st arrondissement, which is the most contemporary area of this capital, such as the Louvre and the Tuileries Garden. Also in places like the Grand Palais, the Garden of the Palais Royal de Tokyo, the Rue Saint Honoré, among others. 

The important thing is to be attentive, so you will have the opportunity to meet models, photographers, stylists, magazine editors and much more. Sometimes they are held in some galleries, such as the most exclusive fashion store: the Galeries Lafayette; impressing anyone with its spectacular glass dome. There is also a gallery called Le Bon Marché, one of the oldest. 

Some of the best streets for shopping in Paris:

Avenue Montaigne:

It goes from the Seine River to the Champs Elysees, an area where luxury stores meet, but also Haute Couture. Firms such as Dior, Valentino, Versace, Ralph Lauren, Bvlgari, Escada, Nina Ricci, among others, have taken perfect care in the elaboration of their shop windows; for the attraction not only of tourists, but also of fashion professionals and lovers of the latest trends. 

Exquisite decorations and personalized attention, sober, discreet stores, without large signs, but with distinction. The history of this avenue begins in 1947, when Christian Dior opened his sewing workshop at number 30, very close to the Hotel Plaza Athénée. In such a way that his clientele could stay while he finished the elaboration of the garment, which required several trials and time, being unique in the market. 

Subsequently, this captivated other designers such as Coco Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent and others, gradually becoming what it is today; the nerve center of fashion. 

Rue de Rivoli:

Between the Place de la Concorde and the Louvre Museum is located this street, with a variety of stores where you can find everything. From the Museum to the east are both international and national clothing chains such as Yves Rocher, Mango, GAP, H&M, Zara, The Body Shop, among others. Another place is the BHV store, better known as the Hotel de Ville Bazaar, with slightly cheaper prices. 

La Rue Royale:

Another reference for shopping in Paris is this street, which connects the Place de la Concorde with the Madeleine. In the middle of this street is located the Rue Saint-Honoré, which crosses it perpendicularly, finding among these glassed passages traditional stores, such as the Royale Gallery. Likewise, the boutiques of this avenue Rue Royale are of French brands such as Yves Saint Laurent or Prada stores. 

Rue Saint-Honoré and Faubourg Saint Honoré:

Prestigious brands such as Hermés, Yves Saint Laurent or Prada are located here, but also the mecca of fashonistas: Colette, where urban style and luxury designers are mixed. Also towards Place Vondóme we find the high jewelry, where you can find brands such as Cartier, Bvulgari, Armani, Chanel, among others. 

Avenue des Champs Elysées:

This avenue begins at the Place de la Concorde, which is the lowest area, surrounded by gardens and the buildings of the Grand Palais, the Petit Palais and the Palais de la Découverte. Then there is the highest part of this avenue that begins at the Place de l’Etoile, next to the famous Arc de Triomphe, where the luxurious stores are located, including those of Gucci, Dior, Cartier, Louis Vuitton, Valentino, among others.

But there are also cinemas, restaurants and even a place for important cycling events, such as the final goal of the Tour de France; an avenue that covers about 2 km long and 70 m wide. Its history dates back to 1640 with the planting of trees in an aligned form; later some reforms were made until it became an avenue. The last restoration was in 1994.

Today it is the most expensive area in the world, even more than Montaigne Avenue, making it an important place for lovers of fashion shopping. And, although it may not be possible to shop in this area because of its costs, it is worth seeing the decorations of its shop windows and the interiors of the stores. 

Towards Boulevard Haussmann:

This boulevard almost entirely crosses the 8th and 9th arrondissement, starting at Av de Friedland up to where the boulevards of the Italians and Montmartre meet. In this area are located the Galeries Lafayette and the department store Printemps Haussmann; temples of glamor, beauty and chic. Also in the surroundings are located stores such as Zara, H&M, Benetton, C&A, among others.

In the Marais district:

It is located between the 3rd and 4th arrondissements, characterized by its many narrow streets full of stores with the best looks that are in trend. Especially towards the northern part, towards Rue Charlot and Rue de Turenne, are located the young designers and stores of not only French but also foreign firms; a perfect place to shop in the French capital.

Posted in Europe, France, Paris.