It's 5 o' the land of the setting sun...time to share the Fika and many other city pleasures!

When Marie-Caroline gave us carte blanche to write a blog post, Alice and I thought about what we wanted to write. Very quickly, we thought of sharing with you these magical places that take you very far while remaining very close. Personally, these are places where I like to go to recharge my batteries, to give myself a breath of fresh air and to replenish my creativity. They are places that give me another perspective on life, that take me out of my routine, because they remind me of how vast, exciting and full of opportunity the world is. I come out boosted, with brilliant ideas, fully charged motivation and the desire to initiate new projects. Incubators of vitality, as we could also call them, to remember to savor life...

So there you have it, I'll give you our trip to Paris...

The most beautiful changes of scenery I have experienced all had in common this extraordinary way of leading you into an exceptionally immersive universe! They weren't necessarily places very far from my daily life, but they were places that give you the impression of traveling very far in a few minutes in time or space. With Alice, these are three trips that we (re)discovered together in Paris.

The WHSmith bookstore, rue de Rivoli first. From the moment you walk through the door, you are caught up in the thousands of worlds that emerge from the books on display on the shelves. Each of them written by a different author, with the ambition to share the history of a country (I loved leafing through Tolkien's picture books), a reflection or a historical figure (a whole shelf dedicated to Queen Elizabeth , real immersion in English culture). Wandering through these alleys and getting lost in these pages... like a timeless moment to set off on an adventure alongside an incredible character or sit in an armchair to glimpse the history of a nation, a culture, of a person...

So, with Alice and Marie-Caroline, we share our summer selection with you:
  • A thriller recommended by the house (apparently the hit of the moment) and selected by Alice for her long hours at the beach. I quoted “The Night Manager” by the English writer John Le Carré.
  • An inspiring and always fresh book written by Michel Obama. Marie-Caroline wanted to recommend the book "Becoming" which is really excellent (I confirm, having read it, a very good read), but as it was not in stock, we chose "The light we carry" , not to be missed either.
  • And finally, I recommend a classic that you may have already seen in film, but which has an unparalleled charm when you read the original version: "Gone With the Wind" with the beautiful and fiery Scarlett O'Hara, a novel that will give you many hours of reading.

Upstairs, we find the stationery in the chic English style where everything is so pretty that we hesitate for a long time... Finally, to perfect this magical moment, the tea room with its large fireplace and its cozy atmosphere will undoubtedly give you the feeling of being in a small English cottage. It was only because the clock was ticking and we had to visit other places that we managed to tear ourselves away from this singular place.

Our next step brought us a very appreciable wave of sunshine in this rather gray month of July. The colors of this very bright royal blue, used on the walls and cobblestones and surrounded by palm trees, give this place a unique feeling of exoticism! You guessed it, we were at the tea room of the Paris Mosque. So as we are greedy, we tested several pastries, each as exquisite as the next.

A pleasure for the eyes and the palate, this getaway takes you on a distant journey to the land of the setting sun...

We then cross the Seine to find ourselves in one of the oldest and most charming districts of Paris (my favorite district without a doubt). After crossing rue des Francs-Bourgeois, take rue Payenne to square Georges Cain. And that's where we're taking you… sharing the Fika together, a typically Swedish break where we meet at any time of the day for a friendly moment. The FIKA café has a warm atmosphere with its small tables inside and its courtyard with long tables and wooden benches outside. When I worked in this neighborhood, I liked to go there, alone or with friends to let go of the stress of the day and refocus on what really matters to me, these were always precious little moments.

If you go there, discover the famous "Bullar" with cardamom, this typical little brioche that catches my eye every time I go there. Right next to the FIKA, you will find the Swedish Institute, a real "piece of Sweden in the heart of Paris". You will discover varied exhibitions on Swedish culture for a total immersion in this country where life is good.

It was with stars in our eyes and the impression of having made a mini world tour that we ended this beautiful day... by bike in Paris... passing from the charm of England to the exoticism of the Maghreb, to the generosity of Sweden.

So, when you need to take a break to recharge your batteries, refuel your creativity or simply to get away from it all, think of these three magical places!

Lysiane from Team Petites Reines

📍 WHSmith bookstore, 248 rue de Rivoli, 75001 Paris

📍 Tea room - Restaurant of the Mosque of Paris, 39 Rue Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire, 75005 Paris

📍FIKA, 11 Rue Payenne, 75003 Paris