“A shop in Paris” is the new book by Màxim Huerta. It tells the story of two women with lots of things in common, but in different ages. Teresa was a lonely woman in the present day, until she came across a very mysterious sign from a shop in the 20′s. Through that sign, her life gets connected to Alice’s, a girl that lived in Paris in 1920 and hung out with Modigliani, Kiki de Montparnasse, Jeanne Lanvin and Coco Chanel.
Some bloggers and I had the pleasure of being invited to Maxim’s house, where we discussed some aspects of the book and had a great time. Màxim told us that all the characters (except for the main ones) are real, they actually existed and lived in Paris at that epoque. Also, all the restaurants, bars, cafés and addresses that are mentioned are from the real Paris, and you can visit them now, as they still exist.
I’ve made this Paris guide with the most famous places from 1920 that you can visit now. Coco Chanel, Picasso, Modigliani, Cocteau, Man Ray, Elsa Schiaparelli, Dalí, Marcel Duchamp, and F. Scott Fitzgerald used to have fun there. Most of the appear in Màxim’s book, and I added some others.
If you are in need of more 20′s Paris jazz age, watch “Midnight in Paris”, the best way to see the ambient of the city at that age.
RESTAURANTS AND CAFÉS
– Deux Magots: 6 Place Saint-Germain-des-Prés. One of the most famous restaurants in Paris.
- Café de Flore: 172 Boulevard Saint-Germain
- La Tour d’Argent: 15 quai de la Tournelle. The characters in the book have lunch at that restaurant many times. Now, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt visit it when they are in Paris.
- Maxim’s: 3 rue Royale. Coco Chanel, Jean Cocteau, Proust, Otéro and Cavalieri used to love that restaurant. Pierre Cardin re-decorated it in the 80′s. Alexander McQueen was a fan too.
- La Coupole: Boulevard du Montparnasse 102
- Dingo Bar: 10 rue Delambre. Ernest Hemingway met F. Scott Fitzgerald there for the first time, two weeks after the release of “The Great Gatsby”.
- Le Select: 99 Boulevard du Montparnasse.
- La Rotonde: 105 Boulevard du Montparnasse. When an artist couldn’t pay the bill, the owner of the restaurant accepted a drawing in exchange.
Moïse Kisling, Pâquerette, Picasso and behind them Marie Vassilieff at the café La Rotonde, August 1916
- Le Dôme Café: 109 Boulevard du Montparnasse.
Those cafés in Boulevard Montparnasse were a meeting point for the Paris elite. Le Dôme used to be a cheap restaurant where gossip spread. Artists, painters, novelists and poets had lunch there for a few cents, and now the prices have gotten much higher. It has a Michelin star. Picasso, Modigliani, Kiki de Montparnasse… All of them used to meet there every week.
- Le Pré aux Clercs: 30 Rue Bonaparte. One of Hemingway’s favourites.
- La Closerie des Lilas: 171 Boulevard du Montparnasse. Another brasserie in the boulevard, where Ernest Hemingway used to go to write. The tables at the Closerie have seen Cezanne, Arthur Miller, F.S. Fitzgerald, Dali,B eckett, and more recently, Paul Auster. There must be a special feeling in the ambient.
- Café George V: 1 Avenue George V.
- Créperies in rue Saint-André des Arts
- L’estaminet de Gaya:17 rue Duphot.
- Le Boeuf sur le Toit: 34 rue du Colisée. It became famous for its jazz concerts.Cocteau, Jean Wiener, pianist, Darius Milhaud, composer, Django Reindhart, Juliette Greco (a few years later), Léo Ferré, and Charles Trenet used to go there.
- Le Jockey Club: 2 rue Babelais. It was a very exclusive club in which legendary parties were celebrated.
- Mi amor: 10 rue Pont Louis-Philippe. The shop that inspired Maxim’s book.
- Shakespeare & Company: 37 Rue Bûcherie. One of the most famous bookshops in the world. They sell old books and special editions.
Sylvia Beach and James Joyce at the entrance of Shakespeare & Co, founded by Sylvia.
- 3 rue Joseph Bara: Modigliani’s studio.
- 39 Rue Descartes: Ernest Hemingway’s first studio.
- 27 Rue de Fleurus: Gertrude Stein’s apartment.
- Place de la Contrescarpe
- Art galeries in Saint-Paul.
- Jardins de Luxemburgo
Chocolat viennoise at Maxim’s (source)