Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Falling in Love with the 3rd Arrondisement

Paris is divided into 20 arrondisements, and I made it my goal when I moved here to explore each and every last one. Well, the search has officially ended; I have found my one true love. Give me no riversides, no monuments, or sloping hills. The 3rd arrondissement is where my heart belongs. Ode to her soft swelling streets, so blissfully empty in a tourist-packed city. Ode to her blossoming commercial district, full of concept shops and actually drinkable French coffee. Ode to the grunge mixed with the beauty, the rough living with the light. Ode to a place where vitrine after vitrine, I look in and see bits of my soul on display, in products and foods and slogans and artwork. Ode to a place that could care less as much as it cares so deeply.

Perhaps that's because this little arrondissement is more the feel of Paris than the sights. One doesn't come to the 3rd to engage in a frenzy of snapchats and insta-selfies by easily recognizable monuments. No it's where you can wonder lost in the ivory and iron lined rues, discover a nameless boutique with vintage treasures, stop for a cafe and relax to the sound of 1940s jazz crackling on a record player. Le 3eme est mon âme soeur. The 3rd is my soul sister.

Originally inspired by the cafe recommendations made by my blogging muse, Parisinfourmonths, I have taken to getting up early and catching the metro out of the sleepy, residential 16th down to Republique on the west side of Paris and planning on getting lost and falling in love for the day. With handlebar mustached baristas frothing designs in a cafe creme. With the light bouncing just so off of blush-colored buildings down to the narrow streets. With feeling like I am making this city mine. Every once in a while, I will take out my phone to orient myself or grab a quick pic. But the best discoveries are made as a flâneur (or flâneuse, in my case), one who masters the art of the stroll.

But with so much to explore, and so little time, it's best to have a few good spots in mind to stroll to, and then get delightfully lost on your way, so here's a list to get you started:


76 Rue des Tournelles, 75003 Paris
8:30am-4:30pm, all week

12 Rue Dupetit-Thouars, 75003 Paris
8:30am-6:30pm, weekdays
11am-7pm, weekends

Fondations Cafe
16 Rue Dupetit-Thouars, 75003 Paris
8am-6pm, all week


The Broken Arm
9am-7pm, Tuesday-Saturday
Closed, Sunday-Monday

Rose Bakery
11-4pm, Tuesday-Sunday
Closed, Monday


Violette and Leonie
114 Rue de Turenne, 75003 Paris
11am-7:30pm, Tuesday-Saturday
2:00-7:00, Sunday
1:00-7:30, Monday

Le 132 Turenne- Atelier Vintage
130 Rue Turenne, 75003 Paris
11am-7pm, Monday-Saturday
2pm-7pm, Sunday

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