Autumn blooms at the Grand Palais

Set at the back of the beautiful Beaux-Arts style architecture of the Grand Palais just off the Place du Canada is a park that anyone can easily pass unnoticed. Thanks to my roving eyes (I have to be because I am always on the lookout for photo opportunities) I caught the sight of a rocky flight of steps going down leading to a vegetal archway. Curious to find out what I could find inside – and after checking if there was no ‘No Entry’ sign, I inched my way in only to get bowled over by the staggering autumnal landscape unfolding before my eyes!

Come!  I invite you to come in….

Along this tree-lined avenue of Franklin Roosevelt corner Cours la Reine is the entrance to the park.



The monumental Louvois fountain

The other day, I was walking along rue Richelieu still in search of red nosed sculptures when I suddenly stumbled upon a massive fountain with female statues around it – the total look of which resembles that of a Wallace fountain, only it is bigger!  It actually took my breath away as the female figures are so impressive!


This magnificent fountain is set in a small, unknown square – Square Louvois, named after the Marquis of Louvois, a great War minister during the reign of Louis XIV.


The square was created in 1830 on the site of the Theatre National de la rue de la Loi and the fountain, a masterpiece of Louis Visconti, was constructed in 1844.


The four female figures, sculpted by Jean-Baptiste-Jules Klagmann, represent the four major rivers of France – the Seine, the Garonne, the Loire and the Saöne.  This one is the Statue of the Garonne


Statue of the Loire

Statue of the Saone


Statue of the Seine

At the base of the fountain are four tritons each mounted on a dolphin.

Christmas Paris: Champs-Elysées (Part 2)

Previous: Christmas Paris: Champs-Elysées

As promised, here are more photos of the Christmas lights along the most beautiful avenue in the world.

These are the illuminated multi-coloured circles of lights  installed on 200 trees which run from  Arc de Triomphe to the Place de la Concorde.


They are called “tree rings”.


Sparkling garlands hung seven feet high to  complement the rings.

This is how the Christmas lights look like if you are standing in the middle of the avenue.  The businessman in the picture seems to be unperturbed by the disorderly  traffic around him.  Business as usual, I supposed.


One of the most iconic sights of the Champs-Elysées, at Christmas…

The Arc du Triomphe is undoubtedly a beautiful piece of architecture, I’m sure these two gentlemen would agree!

The lit-up building on the right is the Cartier boutique.

These people just came out of the Lido.  Still starstruck by the highly pompous show!


The Christmas display of Guerlain – a giant glass ball with Parisian icons inside.

And here is the shop facade of Guerlain with its ephemereal vitrine display…

I can’t resist taking a shot of the very Parisian stairs of The Marriott!


More Christmas decorated vitrines next time.  A bientot!


Dior dressing at Printemps’ Christmas window display

After marvelling at the Louis Vuitton marionettes  of Galeries Lafayette, I made a separate trip to its just-as-magnificently-chic- next door neighbour, Printemps, and guess who is this year’s designer who could easily give LV a run for its money?  Why, it’s the timeless Christian Dior, of course!

As if there is an annual Christmas window display contest between the two department stores, one refusing to outdo the other, the public especially the tots and matured doll lovers could only shout with glee!


The theme of the Christmas display is Parisian inspirations by Dior 

The marionettes are created by the most-famous puppet master, Jean-Claude Dehix who has been creating window displays for Paris department stores for over thirty years.

Here, you can see a famous Dior bag with a 2,500euros price tag.


As the department store gives honor to Dior, it created on its nine windows
a fairytale story in the heart of Paris

A story of joy and celebration

And after the marionette show, it’s time to do some Léche-Vitrine!*







More on  léche-vitrine, here.


Christmas Paris: Champs-Elysées

The Christmas lights along the Champs-Elysées were finally lit up last Wednesday and  the Christmas markets few days before so it is now time to do a photo-expedition of the most beautifully lit-up avenue in the world.   But alas! it has been raining all day, non-stop, and it was quite a challenge to hold an umbrella in one hand and a camera in the other hence, this limited photos!  But I shall go back, promise!

The Christmas village where 170 white cottages are set up on both sides of the Champs, starting from Place de la Concorde to Franklin Roosevelt intersection.

Starstruck customers revel at these rotating hanging trinkets.

There’s still time to assemble a nativity display..

Christmas balls that you can wear…

There’s also a chance to shop for colourful Christmas cocktails..

Santa and his little trumpet boy welcoming the tots wanting to ride the trampouline..

Adventure rides such as this one awaits the thrill-seekers!

This charcuterie stall along with the cheese next door are very popular among camera-totting tourists!

For the veggies and the fruities..this stall looks so good!

The festive sparkles at the Franklin Roosevelt intersection..

And the Grand Roue just outside the Tuileries, where the Avenue des Champs-Elysées begins (and ends at the Arc du Triomph.