Paris, Paris, how do I love thee? My heart truly starts to pitter-patter as I touch down in Charles de Gaulle Airport for a visit to my favorite city: Paris, France. Then it’s on to the train for about an hour, and if it’s truly a celebrated arrival, one will hear the strains of a traditional song by an accordion player singing out through the cars. A change in lines and finally the arrival I’ve been waiting for: Passy, in the 16th arrondissement! What makes it so special, you ask? Perhaps it does slightly remind me of my native home in Pasadena, California, but then again, perhaps the opposite – because it is so FRENCH to me!
Located on the Right Bank, the 16th has a long reputation of being where the monied have lived, professionals and those wishing to live quietly but still within the boundaries of the fascinating City of Light! Small shops, cafes, bakeries – everything one needs to live day to day. Fashionably chic, but neighborly in feeling as well.
From HipParis.com, “The 16th is known for its wide tree-lined boulevards with bourgeois apartment buildings, the epitome of Baron Haussmann’s 19th-century urban planning.” I love the different shades of white, accented with the wrought ironed balconies and railings one sees everywhere!
There is an important American tie-in with Passy as well. Benjamin Franklin actually lived in this neighborhood when he became the ambassador to France in 1778. From the Benjamin Franklin History site, “Franklin resided in the suburb of Passy, just outside Paris, in a house donated by a wealthy Frenchman and American sympathizer, Jacques Donatren Le Ray de Chaumont. In Passy and Paris, he frequented the rich and the politically connected who bankrolled the revolution.” But for now, let’s continue with our neighborhood stroll, beginning with La Ferme de Passy, one of the local cheese markets!
On a warm Thursday in March, neighbors were out shopping and the window display here caught my eye! Cheese and wine – the stuff of life : )
A little further down the street, we stopped at a market for a few things. The veggies looked lovely…
As well as the fruit…
In Passy, there are many stylish shops – here is a window with a Matisse-inspired painting promoting cool eyeglasses!
I noticed lots of pops of bright mustard yellow everywhere for spring fashion! Tempted?
Here is a great video offering a brief tour of Passy!
Hot lavender seating drew a longing glance as we passed by the Frankl’in Café!
On my first visit to Paris in 1989, I remember coming to the Trocadéro and taking a photo in front of the Tour Eiffel from the Trocadéro vantage point. It’s truly beautiful. What is the allure of Paris? The romance? The architecture? The food, the history, the art, the joie de vivre? Exuberant enjoyment of life, vitalizing energy, the zest and gaiety of an inexhaustible joy! YES, all of this and more!!
I became familiar with Passy in 2014 when my husband and I participated in two home exchanges for our place in Pasadena, CA. I’m so glad I’ve discovered this little corner of Paris; it has a feeling of home to me now, and we’ve remained friends from that time until now with those who we first exchanged with! Passy has the allure of a comfortable, historic and beautiful way of life. Close to everything Paris has to offer with a quiet, well-appointed neighborhood feel. Oh, how I don’t wish to say “goodnight” or “goodbye” to this lovely place! Au revoir, dear Passy – until next time!