FANCY joining Emily in Paris? Or at least following in her footsteps as the smash-hit Netflix series airs for saison trois.
Emily, played by actress Lily Collins, began episode one as a gauche American trying to make her way in the notoriously competitive (read, ‘bitchy’) French fashion scene.
By the time this third series comes along, Emily seems to have much more savoir faire and looks almost as elegant as the French capital.
Of course, Paris doesn’t need the lovely Emily and a successful streaming series to sell itself to the thousands and thousands of visitors who take in the sights and sounds of the City of Light every year, but as they say (in another context) every little helps.
There is almost too much too see and do in Paris, but with good planning you can take in many of the things that have made Paris a “must-see” destination.
Of course, the Eiffel Tower is probably the best starting point – a place where you can look down on other iconic landmarks like the shoppers’ paradise that is the Avenue des Champs-Elysees, the Louvre Museum (complete with the Mona Lisa), Notre-Dame Cathedral (where you can check on the rebuilding work after that devastating fire in 2019), the romantic River Seine, and scores of top-quality restaurants and bars.
But maybe you just want to emulate Emily and visit some of the places made even more famous in the series.
Emily would often drink a glass of Chablis in Cafe de Flore on Boulevard Saint-Germain, which opened in the 1880s, and was once a favourite watering hole of the writer Ernest Hemingway.
The legendary novelist, an American just like Emily, and whose best-selling novels included For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Old Man and the Sea, might not have approved of the Emily in Paris scripts, but I am pretty sure he would have loved its success.
Cafe de la Nouvelle Mairie, on Rue des Fosses Saint-Jacques, is another favourite of Emily and her friend Mindy, where one should try the quiche and sample one of the excellent organic wines on offer.
Emily’s love interest Gabriel is the owner of Les Deux Comperes, which is actually a traditional Italian bistro (admittedly not very French, but worth a visit none the less) that goes by the name of Terra Nera, near Place de l’Estrapade.
Also, why not pay a visit to Place de Valois, where Bistrot Valois, the bar where Emily and her co-workers hang out before or after work, is located. Here, le patron Laurent Chainel’s menu includes aioli mackerel and pan-fried tuna with grilled vegetables and cheese plus a vast array of wines.
Conveniently, Bistrot Valois is situated just a short walk from the aforementioned Louvre.
Away from food, wines and affaires de coeur, the landscaped gardens of Palais Royal on Rue de Valois were where Emily and Mindy first met, is well worth a visit.
Of course, for the busy businessman or woman, one of the major benefits in sampling all or just some of these delights is that Paris is just a short hop across the Channel with no frustrating airport waits or long flights to cut into your break.
And almost certainly one of the best ways of arriving in Paris totally unflustered and ready to get into sight-seeing, shopping action or cuisine-chasing is to travel via Eurostar.
With a journey time of two hours 16 minutes, you’ll be disembarking at the Gare du Nord in the heart of the city almost before you know it.
Departing from London St Pancras International, the high-speed Eurostar offers spacious seats where you can sit back and relax.
With lots of legroom and space to unwind, everything is designed for a comfier journey, while the two-bag luggage allowance means you needn’t skimp on packing.
There’s a travel class to suit every budget and style, and with sockets at every seat and free Wi-Fi for everyone, you can keep in touch with your business all the way from one capital to the other. Or, if you feel so inclined, you can switch off from your commercial considerations and start your getaway-from-it-all the moment you step on board.
Feeling peckish en route? Then stroll along to the Café Metropole or the well-stocked onboard bar buffet, where you will find snacks and meals for any time of day, from flaky morning pastries to after-work apéritifs.
So, Emily loves Paris – and you will too.
Additional Eurostar Info
• Eurostar operates 14 trains a day from London St Pancras International to Paris Gare Du Nord with one-way fares starting from £39 (based on a return journey)
• All tickets are now flexible, with no exchange fee on changes up to 7 days before departure
• Fastest London-Paris journey time is 2hr 15 minutes
• Eurostar tickets can be booked 330 days prior to the departure date
• Tickets are available from www.eurostar.com
TRAIN VERSUS PLANE – BENEFITS OF TRAVELLING BY EUROSTAR
• Seamless city centre to city centre travel, stations located in the heart of our destinations
• no need for expensive, lengthy airport journeys
• Sustainable travel
• carbon footprint from one flight the same as making 13 Eurostar journeys
• Extra baggage allowance
• Eurostar offers each person 2 suitcases and 1 piece of hand luggage with no weight restrictions and at no extra charge
• Fast and convenient check-in
• Dedicated check-in for Business Premier passengers
• No additional checks on arrival
• Comfort and space on board to work or unwind
• No queues or baggage reclaim upon arrival – simply take your bag with you on board
• Check-in: Dedicated check-in area and fully flexible ticket conditions
• Exclusive lounges in Paris, Brussels and London provide the perfect area in which to relax and unwind before hopping on board with power sockets, magazines, newspapers and a range of snacks and drinks to keep travellers refreshed
• On board – Business Premier menu designed by Raymond Blanc, OBE
• Michelin-starred chef Raymond Blanc, OBE has been Eurostar’s Business Premier Culinary Director for ten years (October 2012)
• Business Premier passengers experience the very finest in on-board dining, with a 3-course meal served at the seat from a menu created by Raymond Blanc
• Renowned for his passion and innovative culinary expertise, Raymond works with each of Eurostar’s three kitchens to create seasonal menus combining the best of British and French cuisine and featuring sustainable ingredients of local provenance
• Eurostar has been awarded highest rating of three stars from the Sustainable Restaurant Association Sustainable (SRA) for its commitment to sourcing local and sustainably produced ingredients and for pursuing a socially and environmentally responsible approach
• Business Premier fares are £245 one-way based on a return journey