Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Hyde Park, London

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Beaches, Rethymno, Crete

Monday, 27 March 2017

Terrass Hotel Montmartre by MH, Rue Joseph de Maistre, Paris

Although it occupies an 100-year old building overlooking one of Paris' historic cemeteries, the Terrass Hotel Montmartre is bang up to date inside. It has a cool and contemporary interior in which splashes of red and funky furniture are interspersed with restrained and tasteful decor. The hotel boasts studio lamps, director’s chairs, wooden floors, tiling of the Paris Metro and bathroom light bulbs modelled on the lamps in artists’ “loges”. Besides its location in buzzy Montmartre, the hotel's main draw card is distant views of the Eiffel Tower both from the premium rooms and the seventh floor rooftop terrace and bar. To make the most of this vista, the "studios d'artiste Eiffel" have large glass windows both in the bedroom and the en-suite bathroom, which is equipped with a luxurious roll-top bath and high-end toiletries. The Terrass Hotel Montmartre also offers fast free WiFi, safes, a gym, a spa, a library and games room, as well as Nespresso coffee machines in the premium rooms. All in all, this establishment is a memorable place from which to survey Paris. 8/10 

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Paris Gare du Nord Station

Le Vrai Paris, Rue Des Abesses, Paris

The cobbled streets of Montmartre, sunshine, comfortable stools, chirpy service, fresh orange juice, coffee, toast and a croissant all for seven euros - Le Vrai Paris provides a near-perfect Spring time breakfast.

Place des Vosges, the Marais, Paris

Reputed to be the oldest planned square in Paris, Place de Vosges was laid out in the early seventeenth century and provides much-needed open green space in the medieval Marais district of the city. Originally built by Henry IV, the square is still lined with extraordinarily harmonious and handsome buildings. Victor Hugo lived at number 6 while he wrote Les Miserables, but the aristocracy largely abandoned the square in the nineteenth century as the Marais moved downmarket. Today, Place de Vosges is at the heart of one of the most trendy and enthralling parts of Paris.

Musée d'Orsay, rue de Lille, Paris

Le Basilic, Rue Lepic, Paris

  • Popular with locals and tourists alike, Le Basilic is a traditional and cramped Gallic restaurant on the slopes of Montmartre. Inside the timber-framed building, the ambiance and decor are old-school bistro: cream tablecloths and leather books on laced-lined shelves. If you haven't booked, you may have to queue in a tight space beside the door, but the waiters are very efficient and convivial. They lift tables around to help you squeeze into a berth  The three-course €29 Pleasure Menu seems to be the main draw. For each course, you can select from five fairly conventional dishes. To start, the herring, served with potatoes, is fresh and delicious. Among the mains, the duck leg with olive tagliatelle isn't quite as good, but is generous and filling. For desert, the chocolate mousse works well unless you have a very sweet tooth. The glasses of wine seem to be larger than billed and good value: the smooth Côtes de Bordeaux (€4.3 a glass) is very drinkable. Le Basilic is a tight ship that hasn't succumbed to the temptation to only pursue the ample tourist trade in this part of town. 7/10