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“Trading Paris for the Big Apple, the Big Easy, and a Big Bargain”

Friday morning I head for the “Big Apple” — sure to experience a bit of culture shock as I strain my neck to see the sky and seek alternatives to Starbucks for a good “café crème.” I am changing places with one of our New York clients who has generously given me the keys to her Manhattan apartment while she wallows in the luxury of her newly decorated Paris “pied-à-terre.”

The view from her Marais “aerie” is at treetop level overlooking the cobblestoned triangle where the Hector Guimard-designed art nouveau iron entrance to Métro Saint-Paul is situated, partnered by a children’s carousel at the western end. This apartment was one that actually sold twice — first to a couple who, after returning to the States, decided not to make the purchase within the 7-day buyer’s remorse period, and then later, to this Manhattanite who is so ecstatic with her new Paris home that she quickly remarked, “What were they thinking?”

She renovated and redecorated the spacious one bedroom to perfection in soft sand and sable tones. While looking at the trees and the centuries-old buildings across the Place from the standpoint of her brand-spanking-new marble-topped kitchen, she calls it “heaven.”

I visited other happy new-home owners this week to find the same enthusiastic sentiments. This couple had attended last year’s Living and Investing in France Conference in New Orleans and now have made Paris their primary home. Their apartment is just two short blocks from my own, situated on a corner creating a triangular floor plan, on the 5th floor of a Haussmannian style building with views from all three sides — of rue de Bretagne, rue de Turenne and rue Froissart. It is amazingly directly “vis-à-vis” with a friend’s apartment who happens to be the specialty “mosaiiste” about to start creating a world of Provençal tile work in my new little rental studio. “C’est un petit monde!”

Much to my dismay, the signing of the “Acte de Vente” on the little investment I am making, hasn’t yet taken place, through the simple fault of the misplacement of my file by the insurance company which must make a decision as to whether I will be a healthy and fit borrower! Today I will visit our Notaire to give “procuration” (power of attorney) so that he may sign on my behalf while I’m on the other side of the “pond.”

The following week, my daughter and I be heading south to the “Big Easy,” where life isn’t so easy these days. “Post Katrina Trauma” has affected most everyone who is trying to recreate their lives there, and we hope to help by showing our support and spending our tourist dollars.

My heart has been warmed by the rallying of all those who will be attending the Living and Investing in France Round Table — now, too, with many of our finest presenters at my side: John Howell, Ruth Mastron, Philippe Vasseur, Meadda Ang and Schuyler Hoffman. We’ve added 1.5 hours to the agenda, not to mention all this wonderful talent, yet the cost has not changed. It’s what I’d call a “Big Bargain.” It’s not too late to register and join us, for the Round Table or just for dinner at Tujague’s, so be sure to visit /frenchproperty/conference/ for more information or email Schuyler Hoffman at [email protected]

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds
Editor, Parler Paris
Email [email protected]

P.S. Saturday night, as I’m partying with friends and family at the Luca Lounge in New York City, you in Paris will have the opportunity to visit 15 of the city’s finest museums free of charge and open 6 p.m. until midnight thanks to “La nuit des musées” — the second consecutive year Paris has sponsored this even


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