FRANCE, PARIS, CAPITAL OF SHOPPING
Shopping is one of the main motivations for a city break in Paris and with good reason. As the European capital for shopping, fashion and design, Paris has some 17,000 shops — including 5,500 in the ready-to-wear sector alone. With major department stores, iconic luxury brands and famous shopping districts, Paris is an amazing shopping destination 365 days a year.
Historically, Paris has always been a major reference for fashion and luxury, and all the major international brands have a flagship store here.
NEW TRENDS, NEW ADDRESSES
A selection of new openings
New shops with eye-catching layouts open in Paris every week. Top brands are well aware that the French capital remains a sought-after shopping destination.
Several famous brands have chosen the Marais to open new stores showcasing their menswear lines. The historic district has been gradually revitalized over the past several years, and 2015 saw some major changes in the streets around the BHV Marais, in the southern part of the neighbourhood. Some years ago, the department store opened its menswear department, BHV/Marais L’Homme, on Rue de la Verrerie, a short distance from the main building. The BHV’s former warehouse on Rue des Archives has since been revamped, and now houses designer fashion for men from Gucci, Fendi, Givenchy, Valentino Homme and Moncler. Hipster-chic brand The Kooples and Sandro Homme also opened stores in the same street in the latter half of 2015.
So the Right Bank is turning into a new hub for men’s fashion. But there was good news for style-conscious women too in 2015. The mega-talented designer Olympia Le-Tan – renowned for her funky, one-off handbags and accessories, often toted by celebrities – finally opened her own store, in a covered passage next to the Palais Royal. Another designer whose work often features in on the pages of Vogue, Sylvia Toledano, opened her new boutique showcasing her trademark clutches and jewellery studded with precious stones next to Place Vendôme.
An iconic name in fashion has opened a boutique in the Golden Triangle: Vionnet. This haute couture house set up in 1912 closed its last store 30 years ago, but is now making a comeback with fashion visionary Hussein Chalayan at the helm. The boutique on Rue François 1er is a stone’s throw from Madeleine Vionnet’s original atelier on Avenue Montaigne. A new vitality also marks Cacharel, the legendary 1960s brand known for its romantic, ultra-feminine styles. Seven years after the closure of its last Paris store, the label is opening two new boutiques in Paris in the first quarter of 2016, in the Opéra district and in Saint-Germain-des-Prés. French designer Daniel Hechter has also set up in Paris, with a new flagship on Avenue de l’Opéra stocking mainly menswear but also some women’s clothing and lingerie.
Another trend is the growing popularity of American fashion brands, following the fad for gourmet burgers, with restaurants cropping up all over the city. Five of the biggest names in American fashion have opened stores in the French capital. Ready-to-wear brand J. Crew now has a shop in the Marais – good news for Paris fans of the preppy chic label (reputedly one of Michelle Obama’s favourites). Tommy Hilfiger has opened a new flagship in a huge building owned by a French bank on Boulevard des Capucines. The 750 m2 store in the heart of the Madeline-Opéra district is the brand’s second retail outlet in Paris, after the existing one on the Champs-Elysées. Tory Burch, the iconic American brand, has picked the elegant Rue Saint-Honoré in the 2nd arrondissement as the location for a store selling its trademark bohemian-meets-luxury clothing and accessories straight from Manhattan. Another high-end New York brand, Coach, has opened a Paris flagship on the same street. Previously available at some Paris department stores, the historic leather purveyor’s handbags are now on display in its own store. And Calvin Klein is once again selling its famous jeans, underwear and sunglasses in Paris, in a brand-new boutique on Rue Etienne Marcel, after an absence of a few years.