The Beauty of Paris is in the Eye of the Lens

Musée du Quai Branly

The Beauty of Paris is in the Eye of the Lens

Parler Paris…
Your taste of life in Paris and France

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Monday, November 6, 2006
Paris, France


Rent Le Provençal between November 16 and December 19 at special last-minute rates:

125€/Night, 800€/Week or 2000€ for 4 weeks or entire period of 36 days!

Located in a very charming and quiet 18th-century building in the heart of Le Marais, this sunny studio is perfect for one or two seeking ultimate Parisian calm, flavored with the beautiful colors of Provence.

Pictures and more details available here: /parlerparis/apartments/rentals/provencal.html


Dear Parler Paris Reader,

After almost ten years, the French-English conversation group I co-coordinate called Parler Parlor, is still a fascinating way of learning more about our fellow French compatriots. Saturday, the discussion, which can be about absolutely anything and everything, turned toward comparing the beauty of Paris with other cities in the world. It was not surprising to learn that every single soul in the room, even those who have traveled quite a bit, held Paris as the world’s most beautiful, hands down. Could we think of another city as stunning? No!

This came after a discussion about the photos in the exhibit at the Musée Jeu de Paume of Lee Friedlander’s view on Americana. The French didn’t seem to find this collection of work as inspiring as I had…guess they didn’t understand the nuances of life in the good ol’ U.S. of A. and didn’t see the same “beauty” that one might see from American eyes.

That afternoon, I managed to catch the last opportunity to see Marilyn Monroe as seen by photographer Bert Stern — 59 images selected from 2,571 that were taken during two sittings in 1962 not long before she died in an exhibition at the Musée Maillol. Now, if someone asked who was the most beautiful woman in the world, it might be a bit more difficult than choosing cities, but Marilyn Monroe ranks way up there. Even without makeup to hide her freckles, there wasn’t one single facial expression or movement of her body that wasn’t beautiful.

That’s sort of how Paris compares. No matter how many green and gray barricades there are marking off all the road construction going on, or buildings scaffolded and netted for their every-ten-year cleaning, the city still remains simply stunning.

This morning a friend sent over an article that ran in the New York Times Cultured Traveler titled “In Paris, Photographing a City That Has No Bad Side,” written by Richard B. Woodard and published yesterday. He wrote, “But ‘Paris Photo‘ has one irresistible selling point that none of the more than 20 other international photography festivals can hope to lay claim to. It has Paris. No city has been adored through a lens for so many years or is as steeped in photographic history.”

Today, I never leave home without a trusty little digital camera. Years ago, it was a struggle to get over the embarrassment of carrying a camera — Lord! To think I would be confused with a tourist! “Tant pis.” (Too bad.) There are simply too many photo ops to be missed if it’s not in my pocket.

After “Marilyn,” we hopped on the 63 bus to take a chance that we could easily enter the new Musée du Quai Branly thanks to the holiday week, only to discover an hour’s wait. Maybe the rumors we had heard about the long lines weren’t true — but they were. No matter. While the art and architecture inside is surely worth seeing, the exterior of the building designed by Jean Nouvel is (in my opinion) a photographer’s dream.

In another New York Times article titled “For a New Paris Museum, Jean Nouvel Creates His Own Rules” from June 27, 2006, journalist Nicolai Ouroussoff wrote: “Like its predecessors, the new Musée du Quai Branly should raise the hackles of people who hate to see Paris’s beauty tampered with. Defiant, mysterious and wildly eccentric, it is not an easy building to love.”

I disagree. Paris has never been more beautiful.

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris
Email [email protected]

P.S. Make your plans to come have a coffee, Kir or whatever with all of us Parler Paris readers at Parler Paris Après Midi Tuesday, November 14th, 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. at La Pierre du Marais. Visit /parlerparis/apresmidi.html for more information.

P.P.S. Parler Parlor French-English Conversation Group will be closed Saturday, November 11th for Armistice Day. Visit for more information.

Save money when transferring from dollars to euros!

* Make sure your money goes as far as you do… HiFX takes the pain and guesswork out of currency conversion. For more information, click here: /frenchproperty/insider/currencyonlineconvertor.html

French Property Insider Consultation…your complete solution to finding, buying, renovating or renting your new dream home or apartment in France. /frenchproperty/consultation

A Year in Provence…
By Adrian Leeds


This Week in French Property Insider…

Peter Mayle put Provence on the proverbial Anglophone map drawing thousands of lavender-eyed British and Americans to this sun-drenched corner of the French world. Provence is still a hot destination for tourists as well as second-home seekers, in spite of the rising costs of real estate and overabundance of tour busesFPI Subscribers Read On…

Learn how to buy property in France. French Property Insider is an e-mail newsletter from the editors of Parler Paris. Learn all the insights, recommendations, and discoveries about buying and investing in real estate in Paris and France that French Property Insider readers get every week.

To learn more, visit /frenchproperty/insider or go directly to subscribe at /frenchproperty/insider/subscribetofpi.html

Black culture in Paris…


Excerpt from Insider Guide to Black Paris
By Melinda Herron


Though Blacks are an integral part of the Paris music scene, they are less present in the theater and on the silver screen. The listings below will be helpful for those interested in Black stage productions, motion pictures or videos.

Théâtre de l’Air Nouveau (TAN)
Discover Afro-Caribbean culture at this center – theater, dance, languages and crafts. Founded in 1983, the Compagnie du Théâtre de l’Air (Artistes Immigrés Réunis) was rechristened the Théâtre de l’Air Nouveau four years later. Founder/director, Luc Saint-Eloy, is also a member of “Collectif Egalité,” an activist group pushing for more Black actors in motion pictures and television…for more listings, see the guide….

Get your copy of Insider Guide to Black Paris now.


* Sponsored by Parler Paris…WRITING FROM THE IMAGINATIVE STORM…A creative writing workshop that crackles with passion, fun, and spontaneity.

December 2, 2006, 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.
3-hour workshop…Limited to 30…Only 30 euros…

For more information, email James Navé at [email protected]

You can trust the team at Parler Paris Apartments


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.

Parler Paris Apartments offers high quality accommodations to make your stay in the City of Light as enjoyable and memorable as possible. We at Parler Paris know each and every apartment owner or manager personally, and stand behind the quality of those we represent. We understand your needs and desires, all the small details that make a rental apartment a warm and welcoming home – and a much better alternative to an impersonal hotel!

Parler Paris Apartments is administered and serviced by the same great team as Parler Paris, French Property Insider and French Property Consultation. You can trust that Parler Paris Apartments and all those with whom it is associated will do their best for your 100% guaranteed satisfaction.

“Le Provençal” Studio: LAST MINUTE OFFER

Rent Le Provençal between November 16 and December 19 at special last-minute rates: 125€/Night, 800€/Week or 2000€ for 4 weeks or entire period of 36 days!

Located in a very charming and quiet 18th-century building in the heart of Le Marais, this sunny studio is perfect for one or two seeking ultimate Parisian calm, flavored with the beautiful colors of Provence.

Pictures and more details available here: /parlerparis/apartments/rentals/provencal.html

Parler Paris Après Midi

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

The next gathering is November 14, 2006

So mark your calendars to be sure not to miss it! See /parlerparis/apresmidi.html for more details.


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!

* Tuesdays 6:30 to 8 p.m.

Upstairs at La Pierre du Marais
96, rue des Archives at the corner of rue de Bretagne, 75003
3rd arrondissement, Paris
Métro Temple, République or Arts et Métier

* Wednesdays 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. and
* Saturdays 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

13 passage Dauphine (entrance between rue Dauphine and rue Mazarine), 6th arrondissement
Métro Odéon, Saint-Michel, Pont Neuf


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The Art of Living Guide to Le Marais.




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Copyright 2006, Adrian Leeds®
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