More fantastic travel diaries keep flying in from KDHamptons readers who are escaping the bleak Hamptons winter season and jetting off to glamorous locations! This week I heard from fashionable Southampton resident Cory Paul Martin [above], who recently returned from Paris, where he attended Men’s Fashion Week for his haute Southampton workplace, Tenet. Enjoy his KDHamptons Travel Diary below…
My Escape to Paris, By Cory Paul Martin
This was my first escape to Paris and won’t be the last. I work in fashion and traveled to Paris for the Masion & Objet Trade Fair, as well as Paris Fashion Week. The Maison & Objet show supports companies that highlight quality products and respect the environment. This is an inspirational event for the new trends of interior and exterior design featuring leading architects, decorators, and designers. I really loved the amazing throws and oversized pillows that would suit to crash on in every Hamptons home. I love this giant cow skin pillow [below]!
For Fashion Week, I attended Tranoï, located in Palais de la Bourse in the center of Paris. This is a major trade show that includes the latest and upcoming menswear fashion designers from around the world. I had an amazing time meeting with designers and viewing their collections. I visited the Paris showroom of American designer Thom Brown. The runway collection is so fantastic: perfectly cut shirts which will look great in the spring/summer in the Hamptons, weekender bags I can see every guy carrying from the city to the Hamptons, and chic cuff links to wear with all the new shirts. These pieces will be the must-haves this season at Tenet in Southampton.
I stayed at Hotel Costes [above] located on Rue Saint-Honore, where some of the best shopping in Paris is. This is the best, trendiest hotel in Paris that has a very cool, intimate, dark, mysterious vibe. This hotel was commissioned by the Costes brothers to the designer and interior architect Jacques Garcia. The hotel bar and courtyard are total hotspots. I ate many meals there for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, seated next to celebrities on my side such as Calvin Klein and Dita Von Teese.
I also met some amazing people such as store owners and buyers from some of the most popular stores in Italy and Brazil. The room I stayed in was very chic, had a crystal mirrored armoire, and a balcony with French iron furniture overlooking the restaurant courtyard. Before I left, I took with me the scented candles and room sprays so I could have the memory and smell of this fabulous hotel!
My Favorite Restaurants & Bars:
Le Cristal room restaurant at Baccarat [below] where I had a divine 5 course meal while sitting around some of the most exquisite Cristal Chandeliers designed by French demi-god Philippe Starck for an amazing intimate dinning room.
Nobu at La Royal Monceau was a fabulous dinner but my favorite was the desserts. The extraordinary chef Pier Herme who designed the amazing dessert menu for the restaurant. I had the panna cotta, macarons [below], and very tasty passion fruit sorbet.
Le Meurice is highly claimed by food writers worldwide. Every meal is transformed in extra ordinary experience of the sense. Their team works with the best of Parisian products coming from the French region. I highly recommend the escargot fricassee [below].
Another favorite is D’amour. This restaurant was recommended by a French friend of mine, and was located a bit far from my hotel, but was totally worth it. It has a beautiful terrace and young hip crowd.
The Costes Restaurant [above] and bar located at my hotel was my all-time favorite. Everything I choose on the menu was so really special. It has a great crowd, great service, and is totally booked from the time it opens to the time it closed~ sometimes at 6am!
Great Museums I visited:
The Centre Georges Pompidou has a spectacular permanent collection of famous contemporary and modern art. The building is designed as a spatial diagram by architects Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers. I visited the expedition of Salvador Dali and Georges Pompidou, which runs until March 25th 2013. I loved the room designed with his furniture [below].
The Louvre [below] is one of the worlds largest Museums and historic monuments. I felt great to just to walk in the large corridors and high ceilings. I am happy I got to visit and see the fabulous Mona Lisa and Winged Victory.
The Musée du quai Branly designed by the French Architect Jean Nouvel. The Gardens around the museum and layout are absolutely stunning and worth a trip themselves.
Monuments & Landmarks:
Who doesn’t want a picture in front of the Eiffel Tower when they go to Paris. When I went there it was after a snow storm so I played in the gardens throwing snow all around. I experienced the lighting~ how spectacular when the lights start to flash in front of you in the evening.
The Arc de Triomph [below] was also very nice to see since it is one of the most famous monuments in Paris. It stands in the center of the Place de Gaulle, at the western end of the Champs-Élysées.
Notre Dame Cathedral [below] was exciting for me to see since a favorite childhood movie of mine was the Hunchback of Notre Dame. I had to see the gargoyles surrounding the building, who some are afraid, of but I like to think of them of protectors of this incredible church. I had the unique experience of walking through the church during a mass, and although I am not so religious, it was a very warm feeling seeing a lot of local people praying in a moment of faith.
**A personal tip: visit all of the souvenir stores located in the streets around the monuments to get cute little gifts for friends and family. I bought J’adore Paris T-shirts, and keys chains.
My Favorite Show:
I had to see Moulin Rouge [below]. It was a very good presentation of the most talented burlesque dancers from all different countries putting on an amazing performance. We were not allowed to take photos but of course I captured a few. My favorite part was one female dancer dressed as Medusa jumped into a crystal pool with giant python serpents. Enjoyed watching this show while drinking champagne on the first floor balcony.
The Best Night Escapes in Paris:
Le Baron hosts the most trendiest VIP parties in Paris. I was having drinks on the side of a New York fashion designer Alexander Wang and reality star Scott Disick. Silencio is an underground club where lots of Parisian locals and models hang out. It Is know as one of the best places to open in Paris in a long time. Super stylish decor and cocktails shaken, stirred and poured to perfection. Located on Rue Montmartre.
My Shopping Diary:
Collette is a famous store carrying the best brands on fashion. They also have a very nice cafe located in the basement of the shop where you can have a nice meal in-between shopping. I had a delicious light lunch there [below].
Balenciaga is where I purchased a great pair of sneakers [below] that were a must-have during this trip.
The fantastic Goyard store that opened over 100 years ago. This brand is very hot with chic New Yorkers and haute Hamptonites. I am always spotting these super trendy totes, bags, and wallets on Main Street in Southampton.
Eleven Paris is one of the coolest stores to pick up printed t-shirts and phone cases. I bought the Kate Moss tee that says ‘Life is a Joke’. The store is located in the trendiest neighborhood, Le Marais. January is a great time to shop in Paris because all the best stores are in sale 40-70% off. I got some great deals.
This Escape to Paris was such a great adventure for me. I met amazing people and saw such great things. I am very excited pour mon prochain vacance!
**Shop Cory’s Parisian finds at Tenet
91 Main St Southampton; 631.377.3981