The Cost of the Keys to Paris

After years of living in Oslo and then paying the insanely high square-metre price for an apartment in Paris, I thought there was very little (cost-wise) that could shock me. I once paid €18 for a glass (not bottle) of house wine in a piazza in Venice. In Oslo, I regularly fork out the equivalent…

Find That Real Christmas Feeling in Paris

Rumour has it that 150,000 lights make up the Christmas decorations on Champs-Élysées. Glitzy department stores compete for the most original window display. But to get that real Christmas feeling, skip the boulevards and head to the small streets of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, le Marais and Montmartre. There, independent shops deck their doorways with holly and pine….

Pros and Cons of Buying in the Marais

When people ask where in Paris our apartment is, I know they probably won’t recognise the majority of addresses, but the chance of recognition is higher when you say, do you know the Marais?  East bank, across the river from Notre Dame?  Home of Place de Vosges and the Picasso Museum? No? The old Jewish…

5 People You Need for Your Paris Property Hunt

Once you have your heart set on buying your own place in Paris, there are five key people you need to help you to realise your dream. 1. A Property Finder It’s not that we couldn’t have made our Paris dream come true on our own, but the process would have been so laborious, stressful…

First Impressions? Who Cares, It’ll Sell Anyway.

Want to sell your home at a great price? Make sure it sparkles. Tidy it from top to bottom, get rid of clutter, fill it with fresh flowers and brew a pot of coffee. Sell a lifestyle others aspire to be part of. That’s what real estate agents, lifestyle TV, magazines and blogs tell you to do…

Paris Picks – Le Bouquet des Archives

Le Bouquet des Archives is a quintessential neighbourhood bar where good quality plats du jour are hurried out to a devoted crowd of locals, workers and the odd stray tourist by efficient and friendly (well, as friendly as efficiency will allow) staff. As is typical of most local cafes in Paris, many who frequent this bustling bar are regulars. I…

Don’t be Scared of Going to Paris

These days, I often get asked if I feel safe in Paris. The city is on high terror alert but I force myself to think rationally. The attacks in Paris targeted our freedom and I sit firmly in the camp that believes that if we give in to fear, the terrorists have won. Of course I was…

A Little Piece of Paris – One Year On

We bought our little piece of Paris in April 2015. We got the keys in June and spent our first night there on a blow-up mattress on the floor. In November we finished the renovation and were able to start using it properly. That is what I consider to be our real anniversary. One year on and there are no regrets. There…

Paris Weather – Expect the Unexpected

Paris can be freezing cold, scorching hot, and everything in-between. What I have learned is that the weather is never guaranteed. Expect it to feel colder than you think in winter and either hotter or colder than you would imagine in summer. Any season can produce an unexpected cold-spell, or an Indian heat-wave. One thing…

Beautiful Brittany

When we bought our little piece of Paris, our plan was not only to get to know Paris as a city, but to explore its surroundings whenever we got the chance. France’s high-speed rail network makes it possible to cover large distances. Within two hours we were in the heart of Brittany and a world…

A Professional Photoshoot

Photography, like decorating and cutting hair, is one of those things where the final result is just so much better when it is done by a professional.  A photographer friend who specializes in homes and interiors, offered to come in and take photos of our little piece of Paris. Here are the results. As photography…

Paris Picks – Cafe Philippe

If you find yourself on Rue de Bretagne, looking for something a bit more tranquil, cross through Square du Temple and onto Rue Duepetit-Thouars where a string of restaurants crowd the pavement of an almost traffic-free street. Tempted by the small menu of inventive sounding homemade dishes, we chose Café Philippe as our lunch spot…