Meet the Master Magician of Material and Matter

Rue Nobel, Montmartre

Meet the Master Magician of Material and Matter

Parler Paris…

Your taste of life in Paris and France
Monday, December 17, 2007
Paris, France

Community Calendar Updated Every Wednesday

Don’t Miss Parler Paris! AOL blocks many major European ISPs, so we cannot guarantee that our mail to AOL addresses will arrive. Please use another email provider or “White List” our email address or add “[email protected]” to your contact list.

Living and Investing in France Real Estate Conference!
February 16-17, 2008
Alliance Française, Miami, Florida

If you’ve always dreamed of owning your own “pied-à-terre” in Paris or home in the Provinces of France, perhaps as a future retirement home or for now as investment property rented part of the year…this power-packed two-day conference is a MUST.

Hosted by Adrian Leeds, long time resident of Paris, Editor of the Parler Paris Nouvellettre® and French Property Insider weekly E-zine and John Howell, lead attorney for the International Law Partnership, London, these two days in Miami will point you in the right direction to make it really happen! Includes three course lunch and cocktail reception.

For more information and to register, visit: /frenchproperty/conference/

Or email Schuyler Hoffman at [email protected]


Rue Nobel
The Same Corner Before Renovation




Rue Nobel
The Same Room Before Renovation




Rue Nobel
The Same Space Before Renovation

Dear Parler Paris Reader,

Martine di MatteoMartine di Matteo is a master magician of material and matter. She is single-handedly making ‘silk purses’ out of ‘sows’ ears’ in a bevy of Paris pieds-à-terres that deserve her attention.

My apartment will be one of them when the Franco-American Interior Designer oversees the renovation and redecoration of my living room and bathroom beginning in mid January. Both rooms have been crying out for a ‘face lift’ since long before moving in more than ten years ago…the ceiling is peeling, the cracks in the walls have taken on new life (exposing a corner where a door once was in a past century) and the “early divorced” period furnishings have worn out their California life style long ago.

Martine has chosen gold and silk canvas for the upholstery of the couch and two arm chairs, hired an “ébéniste” (cabinet maker) to transfer the Ikea-style laminat

e desk unit into a wall-to-wall built-in work station and will also be keeping me sane overseeing it all while I must live in my 16.5 square meter “Le Provençal” studio rental apartment while the apartment becomes a dust bowl. By March 1, I should be back in business and organizing a house-warming party.

Meanwhile, Martine has been waving her magic wand over several of our clients’ investment properties. This weekend I had the pleasure of seeing the results of the last several months of creative planning and careful execution of two in particular.

One WAS a two room 28 square meter ‘box’ on one of the city’s prettiest little pedestrian alleys with historic significance in Le Haut Marais on rue Cité Dupetit Thouars with views only on a simple courtyard. Today that apartment IS a ‘mini-château’ in deep eggplant and mauve tones, adorned in iridescent silk fabrics and furnished with pale-toned country French tables and chairs. The transformation was overwhelmingly surprising, but the proposed name for the apartment, which will go immediately on the market as a luxury rental, is fittingly, “L’Aubergine.” (Clever name, as “Aubergine” = eggplant and “Auberge” = inn.) Martine’s finishing touches include a bowl of faux “aubergines” as a centerpiece on the dining room table.

The owner arrives in Paris this morning — I just wish I could see his face when he sees the once ‘box’ he bought a few months ago!

The second one I visited is the pride and joy of a couple who live in Houston, but travel to Paris very regularly. The wife of the two is a flight attendant whose route is to Paris almost weekly. It took a year and a half to go from attending a Living and Investing in France Real Estate Conference to finding the apartment and beginning the total renovation.

When we first saw the apartment overlooking a typical Montmartre stone stair, we knew it had ‘good bones’ but needed a serious change to make it livable. Ideas from many sources suggested a new way of reconfiguring the rooms. Magically, an oversized foyer with a closet and toilet was opened up to become an open kitchen and a space large enough to house a dining room table. The once corner kitchen and claustrophobic “salle d’eau” (shower room) became a luxurious bath with laundry room, and the three divided main rooms were linked by double French doors opening the space between all three, but enabling closing off any one of them for more privacy. One serves as living room, one as bedroom and the third as an office/guest room.

The colors are soft blues and mauve tones. The furnishings country French, the kitchen and bath purely contemporary and regal. I wanted to move right in, but Mr. and Mrs. M. had beaten me to it!

Martine’s a busy woman these days, thanks to her talents and our eager new pied-à-terre owners. She’s about to embark on a few more projects at the start of the new year as challenging as these. We’ll keep you posted as they each take shape and in the meantime, be watching Parler Paris Apartments as her works of interior design art are offered to the public as luxury rentals.

To contact Martine, email [email protected]

A la prochaine…  

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris



P.S. Plan on coming to Parler Parlor December 22nd to practice speaking French or English, bring your cake or cookies and we’ll supply the “Vin Chaud!”…plus register that day and get 12 sessions for the price of a 10-session card and 24 sessions for the price of a 20-session card! Closed only December 25, 2007 through January 2, 2008. Reopens January 5, 2008 WITH NEW LOCATIONS AND TIMES! Be sure to visit for more information.

P.P.S. Are you a serious writer with aspirations to have your book published? Deborah Ritchken of the Castiglia Literary Agency would enjoy meeting serious writers who are interested in learning more about how to find a literary agent as well as how to craft the perfect proposal. She is interested in literary fiction, commercial (non-genre) fiction, and narrative non-fiction, particularly with French themes.” To participate, come to the first floor of La Pierre du Marais, corner of rue de Bretagne and rue des Archives in the 3rd arrondissement (across from the Mairie of the 3rd), on December 22, 2007 at 4 p.m. For more information and to reserve your place, contact Deborah Ritchken at [email protected]

Getting a mortgage in France is easier than you think…

Let us show you just how hassle-free it can be to get a French property mortgage for your dream Paris pied-à-terre or villa in the country!

Visit /frenchproperty/loan or contact Mortgage Manager John Rule at [email protected]

This Week in French Property Insider…

Can a Seller Sell a Cellar He Doesn’t Own?
The True Cost of a “Cave”
By Adrian Leeds

A “cave” is not a cave. A “cave” in the French meaning, is the cellar, normally a storage unit in the bowels of a building used to store additional things, particularly wine…Subscribers Read On…

Learn how to buy property in France!

French Property Insider is a weekly e-zine, sharing insights, recommendations, tips, and discoveries about Paris real estate and French property. Each information-packed issue is devoted to educating its readers on how to effectively, efficiently and profitably purchase property in France.

Get An Extra Month When You Take One Year…
French Property Insider SPECIAL OFFER!
Only until December 31, 2007!

Subscribe today for ONE year at the low price of $49.50, and you’ll receive ONE EXTRA month absolutely FREE! Plus, all FPI subscribers can participate for FREE in a one-hour Conference Call “Beat the Decline of the US$: Finance in France” with Mary Fort of French bank BPI and hosted by Adrian Leeds, Editor of French Property Insider.

Subscribe today — prices increase on January 1, 2008!

To subscribe now, click on this link: /frenchproperty/insider

When prompted, enter the Coupon Code: 9B0525

For more information visit /frenchproperty/insider or email [email protected]

By Erica SimoneJoin us for a very special event…to celebrate the photographs and writing by Erica Simonebased on her recent book… A Vivid World


6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Saturday December 29, 2007

46, rue des Abbesses, 75018 PARIS
METRO Abbesses (line 12) or Blanche (line 2)
10 euros entry
includes wine, drinks and snacks

Sponsored by Grace Teshima
For door code, RSVP by email
Home: 01 42 62 45 98
Cell: 06 98 42 69 69
Email: [email protected]

Original photographic prints (editioned and signed by the artist) and copies of “A Vivid World” will be available for purchase.

Subscribe to Champs-Elysées Audio Magazine!

Perfect your French language skills with a subscription to Champs-Elysées Audio Magazines. On CD or cassette and produced monthly, each issue is packed with a range of news and features on current events, theatre, gastronomy, music and politics. Every edition comes with a full printed transcript, complete notes and glossary.

Subscribe today and perfect your languages!

We wanted better guides. So we wrote them.

Insider Paris Guides are written for people who love the City of Light. You’ll get a Paris insider perspective on Good Value Restaurants… Making a Life… Black Culture… Expat Writers…plus the newest guide, Practical Paris!


Email: [email protected]

Welcome to your home in Paris. Home is how you will feel in a private apartment in Paris that has the “seal of approval” from Parler Paris Apartments and me, Adrian Leeds.

Le Penthouse Voltaire

American comfort with French flair! Overlooking Boulevards Richard Lenoir and Voltaire, in the 11th Arrondissement.This three-bedroom, two-bath luxury penthouse
with wrap-around balconies and spectacular views, sleeps 6.

Reserve now! Visit /parlerparis/apartments/rentals/voltaire.html
or email: [email protected] 

Parler Paris Après Midi

Come for a drink and to meet and chat with other readers in Paris…

The next gathering is January 8, 2008 and every second Tuesday of the month.

Parler Parlor French-English Conversation Group

Practice speaking French and English. Make friends, discuss interesting topics, learn about other cultures, progress in understanding and speaking, naturally and easily. Meets three times a week — come as often as you like!

For further details, visit

Christmas Party Saturday, December 22, 2007

Bring some cookies and cakes for everyone to share and we’ll be serving up a cup of “Vin Chaud!” Register that day and get 12 sessions for the price of a 10-session card and 24 sessions for the price of a 20-session card!



Tuesdays 6:30 to 8 p.m. and Saturdays 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
23, boulevard de Sébastopol (at the corner of rue de la Reynie), 1st arrondissement
3rd Floor on the Left (read notice on door to obtain entry code)
Métro Châtelet, Les Halles

Wednesdays 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
14 rue Mabillon, 6th arrondissement
(at rue Guisarde and Le Marché Saint-Germain) 1st Floor
Métro Saint-Germain-des-Prés, Mabillon, Odéon

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The Art of Living Guide to Le Marais.



France Today The Magazine of French Travel and Culture, delivers all the information you need to indulge your passion for France: travel advice you won’t find anywhere else, off-the-beaten-path trips, the inside track on trends in dining, hotels, shopping and style, and the culture scene.

To subscribe, visit or call 1-800-901-6560

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