A Paris Rose by the Same Name May Not Smell as Sweet
Does Paris Hilton gives the real Paris Hilton a bad name?
Paris Whitney Hilton is back in jail and the whole world is talking about it. In fact, she may be the most written about, talked about socialite we’ve ever known. But, how does heiress Paris Hilton’s shenanigans affect the reservations at the Paris Hilton Hotel near the Eiffel Tower? Or think bigger…how does her bad reputation affect tourism to the REAL Paris, France?
I often have wondered how it feels to be Christian Constant, for example. There are two famous Christian Constants in Paris, both of whom I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and both in the culinary field, so it could be quite confusing.
There is Christian Constant the master “chocolatier” “who travels the world to garner the best ingredients for his creations.” He is a winner of many prestigious European chocolate awards, a scholar of chocolate history, an author of two award-winning books on chocolate and has a beautiful and aromatic chocolate atelier and shop at number 37, rue d’Assas near the Luxembourg gardens.
The other Christian Constant is a chef, too, but of restaurant fame. He was once a chef at the Hôtel Ritz and Executive Chef at the Hotel Crillon’s “Les Ambassadeurs” before venturing out on his own with his masterpiece, “Le Violon d’Ingres.” He and his Scottish wife, Catherine, now also run two other restaurants on the same street: “Les Fables de la Fontaine” at 135, rue Saint-Dominique and “Café Constant” at number 139.
On the subject of chefs, perhaps you may remember chef Sharon Morgan, who for a few years ran a soul food restaurant here in Paris named “Bojangles.” We met synchronistically because of a confusion between my name and the name of a friend of a friend with a difference between our names by only one letter — my name has a “d” where his doesn’t. And yes, there was the confusion of gender, too.
I suppose we can’t confuse blonde-haired skinny Paris Hilton with the multi-facility hotel Paris or the City of Light Paris, at least physically (!), but the two male chef Constants…now, that’s a bit too undistinguishable.
Luckily, (I hope) one wouldn’t think I look like a man, although thanks to the masculine spelling of Adrian, it’s been a confusion all my life. Mail comes addressed to “Mr.” or “Monsieur” and in French they simply don’t know how to pronounce the name correctly, since it should be “Adrienne” and clearly feminine.
Contrary to Shakespeare’s belief, not all roses smell as sweet, even if they have the same name. And this particular rose resid
es in the same Paris ‘garden’ — has a by-line or two on the subject of Paris and can sometimes be spotted visiting real estate agencies on behalf of unsuspecting clients. In fact, it became so necessary to protect one’s reputation that last year we trademarked the name!
Shakespeare didn’t coin the phrase, but Brendan Behan did: “There is no such thing as bad publicity except your own obituary.” (Irish author & dramatist, 1923 – 1964)
Let’s hope he’s right.
A la prochaine…
Editor, Parler Paris
P.S. Read all about yesterday’s “Parler Paris Après Midi” at /parlerparis/apresmidi.html and note that next month, we’re meeting on July 3, 2007, as I will be in San Francisco hosting the Living and Investing in France Real Estate Conference the following week (July 7 & 8, see /frenchproperty/conference for more information).