Travel hot list 2012Be the first to comment 7 February 2012
Drink and hear
Café la Cigale (124 Boulevard de Rochechouart, 18th (+33 1 55 79 10 10), little brother of the legendary concert hall next door, is an arty restaurant and bar created by Philippe Starck and Thierry Costes. It’s part of a new wave of venues – including the nearby Café du Trianon – that are giving the Pigalle quartier a much-needed touch of class. The style is post-industrial: a high-ceilinged space with grey concrete walls brightened up by grinning, multicoloured totem pole heads painted by US artist Phil Frost. A small stage is used for occasional live sets, and the rest of the time the DJ spins a good mix of garage, punk, alternative and lo-fi. Fruity mixed beverages are served in individual shakers so you can enjoy them to the last drop.
Launched just a few months ago in Paris’s exclusive Triangle d’Or area, La Maison Champs Elysées (8 Rue Jean Goujon, 8th; +33 1 40 74 64 65) has raised eyebrows with its Martin Margiela design. For a real treat, book the Curiosity Case Suite, which feels like a modernist take on a 19th-century shop, with dark wooden cabinets filled with giant rocks and gems, bottles turned into lamps and outsized mushroom sculptures. Downstairs, the all-white bar is a top spot for a julep or two.
Flight time: seven hours. Air France flies direct to Paris from Dhs4,000 return. www.airfrance.ae.
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