Who? How? What?
Boris Vian, a famous French author from the 20th century, wrote a guide to the Saint Germain des Prés neighbourhood. Many of the places he mentions still exist today, such as the Lipp Brasserie and the Flore café. What is so interesting about this neighbourhood is the concentration of historic addresses which still remain in the same perfect condition today as 100 years ago. Another famous location, an icon of the Saint Germain area is the Procope restaurant. Built in 1686, the restaurant has hosted many famous clients, such as Voltaire, Diderot and Rousseau. The restaurant was also where major decisions were made, such as the elaboration of the American Constitution. Enjoy a good meal or simply an afternoon drink in this cosy and historically-important reatsurant. Read more...
A few streets from the Boulevard Saint Germain is a charming little terrace hidden in the Abbaye Hotel (Rue Cassette). You can go all-year-round to enjoy a drink in a friendly and intimate atmosphere. The place is quite small, so you won't be surrounded by hoardes of tourists. In the same theme, but on the more classy side, you'll find Ralph's. Situated on the Boulevard Saint Germain, treat yourself to a North-American themed mealin large, comfortable chairs and a beautiful setting. A slice of the Hamptons in central Paris. It’s a great spot for a culinary escape from the big city. A place that most Parisians haven’t even heard of is the Delacroix museum, tucked away at the back of a well-known street in Saint Germain des Prés. When you walk into the museum, the noises and traffic of Paris seem a million miles away. Discover where the 19th century painter spent his last years, his flat, the intimate garden and his workshop. A great cultural and relaxing outing for all art-lovers!
If you're looking for more of a wild and crazy experience, however, these two next spots will definitely interest you... The Alcazar Mezzanine is a club whose architecture alone is enough to make your night a memorable one! You can dance until dawn on the ground floor or go upstairs overlooking the dance floor to sit and enjoy the music while sipping a cocktail and looking at the stars through the glass roof (if you can see any stars in Paris' sky!)
The Overside is definitely an unusual experience, especially for those who are a bit traditional: it’s one of the most famous swingers clubs in Paris! You don't have to go for the full-on experience, as the club is distinctively separated into two parts: the nightclub with two bars and 3 dance floors laid out over three different levels. If you want the full Overside experience, go to the left side of the club, where you'll find several different beautifully decorated themed rooms for your secret evening! Saint Germain des Prés is an area popular among tourists as well as locals for its abundance of restaurants, stores and its authentic feel. Parisians refer to the neighbourhood as the “literary left” because, still to this day, you can find many book stores and writers searching for inspiration in the cafés where Hemingway and Voltaire used to mingle. Those who actually live in the area are usually from Paris’ “old money” population. It's not here that you'll see people parading around in fancy cars, popping champagne in clubs - like you would on the Champs-Elysées. The nightlife here is more subtle and elegant. You will find many young Parisians on a Saturday evening, hanging out on the many terraces of the area, sipping wine or fancy cocktails. Because of this, the neighbourhood is one of the safer ones although, like everywhere in Paris, keep an eye out for pickpockets. If you're not at all into history and the art, there are many high-end shops, creative food stores and local markets.