24 Hours in Paris: The 3rd Arrondissement

Take an in-depth tour of one of the city's coolest quarters.

If you visit Paris long enough to see diverse parts of the city that are not touristy, you’ll discover that each arrondissement (or neighborhood) has its own unique identity. 
While we all have a good mental image of what a Parisian girl looks like, her style can drastically change depending on what part of town she’s from. So, we came up with the idea of bringing you a travel guide to all of Paris’ 20 arrondissements – and what do do in each one if you only had 24 hours, plus what to wear to blend in like a local.
Since it’s Paris Fashion Week, what better way to hang out in the City of Light than celebrity-spotting in the most stylish neighborhood of them all: the 3rd arrondissement. Known locally as the upper Marais, the area is an eclectic mix of art galleries, showrooms, cafes, boutique hotels and world-class cocktail bars – you're also most likely to bump into everyone in the industry from designers and models to stylists and bloggers. Expect to see a bevy of international fashion editors sipping tiny espressos between shows and hip students flaunting their latest thrift store finds. 

Image: Littlebouillon.com

Always start the day with a full stomach, and while the slow coffee movement and local bean roasters have been growing steadily in the city, the real challenge is finding a coffee shop that serves both great caffine and cake. Ob-La-Di has all the answers. If you are looking for something creative to brighten up your morning, try the affogato, which is served with cookie dough ice cream. But be sure to try the avocado toast served on purple potato bread (made in-house) with chimichurri and pomegranate toppings that will delight your tastebuds and see you through the day. 

Next, take a stroll around the Carreau du Temple, a former covered market built in 1863 that was recently transformed into a dynamic public space. Brands like Saint Laurent and Kenzo have staged their runways at this unique location. Near by is a the Broken Arm a fashion-oriented concept store with a cafe and restaurant. It often hosts events for designers and fashion photographers, and stocks some of the hottest labels, including Vetements and Raf Simons. For the more cultured, just a few meters away is art book store, 0fr. This is where locals come for their fill of high-quality international fashion and art magazines, rare and cult publications, coffee table books and the occasional independent art show in the modest gallery at the back. Even for a quick browse, it’s worth checking out. 
Image: via Facebook 

Before lunch, head to Merci on Boulevard Beaumarchais and rifle through the excellent selection of homeware that would give any sun-soaked Brooklyn brownstone a run for its money. The store also has three cafes and dining areas if you decide to take a break. However, we would suggest grabbing a bite to eat at Breizh Café, one of the best creperies in the city, with its famous buckwheat crepes that come in authentic French style – or with a Japanese twist (we are talking about the Yuzu and Ginger crepe, of course). Be sure to book ahead, it gets packed during lunch hours. 

Afterwards, take a leisurely stroll around Paris's oldest planned square. The Place des Vosges was the most fashionable and expensive part of town during the 17th- and 18th-centuries, with a great list of famous residents including Victor Hugo (whose home is now a museum situated in the South West corner). The 3rd arrondissement is also known for its many art galleries, so while before you leave the square, check out Modus Art Gallery, which displays modern and contemporary art in different formats. If it’s a bright, sunny day, expect fashion bloggers and influencers posing for the camera with an Amorino gelato in one hand, and the beautiful buildings as a backdrop. Now invigorate a different sense altogether by heading to the Etat Libre d’Orange, an avant-garde perfumery founded by Etienne de Swardt. It has been classed as one of the top perfumeries in the world with its unique scents and indie spirit. While every vile is worth a sniff, the brand has a special Tom of Finland-inspired fragrance that is so naughty that you need to be over 18 to purchase a bottle. 

For some late afternoon people-watching, there’s only one place you need to go: Le Progrès cafe is one of the most popular among the fashion set. Here you’ll spot editors mingling with designers, and bloggers rubbing shoulders with prominent French actors. The venue itself is not fancy or much different to any typical Parisian cafe with outdoor seating, but you will have a higher chance to be photographed by the Sartorialist

Image: via Facebook 

The good thing about the Haut Marais area is that there is always something going on. If you don't envision yourself crashing a gallery opening or a book-signing event, make a reservation at Elmer, a bistro with serious grilling game. The restaurant uses ingredients from small producers in France and is known for roasted ribs and steaks. Who knew rotisserie chicken could look this good! 

Now it’s time do some bar hopping, Marais style. The area is known for its great cocktail bars that serve delicious mixes that are both unique and creative. Hidden behind a taqueria is Candelaria, a speakeasy bar whose menu is full of spicy twists. We seriously enjoy La Guêpe Verte, tequila-based drink with a kick of chili. If you are into less punchy cocktails, Le Mary Celeste is what you’re looking for. Even though the concept is from the same creative team behind Candelaria, this bar offers wider range of drinks including an extensive wine list and some unexpected cocktails like the Ochaya that has a Japanese Sencha tea surprise. End on a high-note by dancing the night away at The Club Les Bains. Set beneath its own boutique hotel, it often plays host to Fashion Week after-parties and, when it’s not rented out for private parties, has a rotation of resident and guest DJs as well as special events and concerts. Just try not to fall in the swimming pool, which is right next to the dance floor. 

Check out our selection of pieces inspired by the 3rd arrondissement's fashionable set style to add to your closet for that local look: 
Urban Renewal Recycled Lion Bleached Long Sleeve Tee - $44
Mango Ruffled Poplin Dress - $100
Monki Hooded Coat - £65
Eloquii Off the Shoulder Midi Dress with Wrap Skirt - $120
Puma Suede Heart Satin Sneaker - $80
Finery London Cornflower Printed Devore Wide Leg Trousers - $175
Zara Parka with Back Sequins Print - $149
Monki Oversized V-Neck Knit - £30
Lane Bryant x Prabal Gurung Cold Shoulder Sweater - $98
Pixie Market Silver Satin Ruched Sleeve Top - $99
Weekday Try Long Sleeve T-Shirt - £20
Forever 21 Plus Size Hooded Moto Jacket - $37
Topshop MOTO Raw Hem Tinsel Jeans - $100 http://us.topshop.com/en/tsus/product/new-in-this-week-2169940/new-in-fashion-6367520/moto-raw-hem-tinsel-straight-leg-jeans-6376647?bi=0&ps=20
& Other Stories Suede Ankle Boots - $155
Uterqüe Red Leather Skirt with Knot - £175
Lovesick Pleated Maxi Skirt - $30
Rachel Roy Ruffled Tunic Dress - $159
Loéil Kinney Dress - $126
Mango Flowy ruffled dress - $120
Topshop MOTO Tulle Skirt Jamie Jeans - $90
Loéil Yulie Furry Mule - $86
Pixie Market Smocked Waist Ruffle Khaki Dress - $105
Day by Zendaya Oversized Velvet Jumpsuit - $48

Cover image: Thus Noumong