Yes, it is extra-extravagant, jetting off to Paris for just three nights, but what better place for extravagance than the City of Lights? You’ll sleep on the plane and wake up in one of the most beautiful places in the world, ready for breakfast croissants and dinnertime views of the Arc de Triomphe glowing in the night. A few days is enough to soak in the magic; you’ll come home a little happier, with Ladurée macarons for your jealous friends.
The Travel Time
7.5 hours (direct!) by plane.
The 157-year-old Hotel du Louvre is next to the Louvre and near, essentially, everything. The place is also filled with a sort of regal appeal, from the massive beds to the verandas overlooking the Opera Garnier; all the romance of the Hotel de Crillon at a lesser price, in many cases. $$$
Where to begin? The Hotel du Louvre’s own Brasserie is rich, well-reputed and romantic, and not far off, on the delicate Rue Vivienne, is the lovely Le Grand Colbert, where you’ll eat real beef tartare, and profiteroles for dessert. For lunch, visit the vibrant, vital Marais for the best street food you’ve ever had, most notably a falafel sandwich from L’As du Fallafel (no website; find it at 34 Rue des Rosiers).
The Sights and Diversions
The lines for the Eiffel Tower are interminable: If it’s views you’re interested in, try Parc de Belleville in the 20th Arrondissement. River cruises with Bateaux Parisiens are an easy, comfy way to see the city (they board at Notre-Dame). Still, walk as much as possible: Every route has its charm, and you’ll find everything from street-side booksellers to Hermès outposts on your rambling detours.
The Insider’s Tip
The motorcycle taxis that abound seem scary, but they’re an exciting way to see the city in a different way … especially at night.