EUROPEAN SUMMER 2015 part 1: PARIS

Hello world! Bonjour! I am excited to be sharing my travels from my recent vacation in July. I had so much fun, learned different languages, stared at glorious architecture, consumed AMAZING food, and shopped my heart away.

Our first stop was Paris, France. It is probably one of the most beautiful cities you will ever step foot in. I was enchanted immediately with the beautiful architecture and ambiance. We stayed for five days at the Hôtel de Vendôme in the Place Vendôme, which used to be the old Texas Embassy building back in the early 1800’s. It is a beautiful, exclusive hotel with a cozy atmosphere that makes you feel at home.

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Straight off the plane, I ran with my sister to the Jardin des Tuileries and basked in the wonderful Parisian sunshine.

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The next day was my parents’ wedding anniversary so, I booked a table for lunch at Le Jules Verne at the Eiffel Tower. This extraordinary luncheon was filled with 360 degree views of Paris and exquisite French cuisine (possible the best chocolate mousse I will ever have in my life).

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After a filling lunch, we went to the Arc de Triomphe to get a different view of Paris, then visited the Louvre right before it closed. P.S. there are fewer people at this time and you get to see everything without millions of people in the way.

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The day after was spent exploring the Palace of Versailles, the Musée d’Orsay, and the Palais Garnier Opéra House. My sister and I also located Coco Chanel’s apartment. Each of these places was filled with amazing architecture and art. That night we enjoyed a boat dinner on the Seine River at the Bateaux Mouche and watched the Eiffel Tower sparkle.

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The following day was more relaxed, as we strolled around Notre Dame Cathedral and Sainte-Chapelle. Later we had lunch at a café at the Centre Georges Pompidou and visited the exhibitions.

IMG_2736IMG_2738IMG_2739 That afternoon, we went shopping. Not just any shopping, but PARISIAN SHOPPING. I bought my first designer bag. A Yves Saint Laurent classic baby sac du jour in dark grey with a lightly textured leather finish. Let me just say, it was very hard to choose which designer bag I wanted because I could only pick one, and it was hard to choose a color because all of them were so beautiful! This bag was a gift from my parents for doing well at the University and maintaining my responsibilities. I am ecstatic to have this bag, it is my baby and I love it so much. The dark grey leather is so modern, so me, I cannot get over it (as you can see I am obsessed). I hope to continue a collection of unique designer bags in the future.

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My last day in Parée was Bastille Day, July 14. I got to watch the march down the Champs-Elysées to La Madeleine. It is truly an amazing feeling to witness another country’s pride for their freedom and nation. In America, it seems we are always prideful of ourselves and think that no other country can compare. But France surprised me, their celebration was memorable and admirable. Vive La France!

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Last, but not least, in addition to all the amazing dishes and deserts I consumed, I went to Ladurée every single day to eat the most amazing macarons in the world. I also tasted Pierre Marcolini’s macarons and they are superb as well. Now that I am back in the states, I miss eating them every single day!

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Je t’aime Parée!

Continued in next post.

All photos taken by Sophia Kountakis 

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