My Favorite Things About Paris

  Paris :  01.07.2008 22:13 
  Originally uploaded by Olivier Colas.

We are leaving Paris today. Taking the eurostar to London for a few days and then back to the states. I thought I’d say goodbye to Paris with a list of my favorite things about Paris. I got the idea from the Gotham Gal who is composing a similar list.

Here my ten favorite things about Paris in no particular order.

1) The Bread – From croissants to baguettes and everything in between

2) The Coffee – A great cup of coffee on every corner

3) The Weather – Much cooler than July in New York City

4) The Language – I love to hear it spoken and like to try to speak it as well though I do it badly.

5) The Velib – We biked all over Paris. I think I used the Velib almost every day we were in town.

6) Mobile Broadband Underground – The Metro is great, with Internet it’s the best subway system I’ve ever been on.

7) Eating Outside – We have so few places in NYC to sit outside and eat and drink and watch the scene. In Paris, you get that everywhere.

8) The River Seine – Many european cities are built on rivers, but few are as lovely as the Seine.

9) The Pompidou – We went to many museums during our stay but the Pompidou is by far my favorite.

10) The Apartment Buildings – I love the look of the parisian apartment buildings. This is a photo I took of one from the Promenade Plantee. They are so beautiful and they are everywhere.

A Building Next To The Promenade

#Blogging On The Road

Comments (Archived):

  1. Binod Khosla

    fred, you’re so meta-loser, it’s endearing.

    1. fredwilson

      Thanks, I think

  2. Liz

    I love how they have height restrictions in downtown Paris…it keeps the buildings from creating wind canyons and casting shadows over everything. It preserves the old style apartments and I think it creates a more welcoming atmosphere than if there were a lot of glass & steel skyscrapers mixed in with 17th-19th century buildings. It must make living in the city more expensive but it helps it retain its charm and beauty.

  3. Sam

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  4. jondillon

    The apartment buildings are nice to look at but not that great to live in unless you’re really lucky and find something special. I’ve recently moved to the US after 7 years in Paris and I love the apartment sizes and layouts here, so much less cramped than Paris. Everything else is on my list too but I would have added shopping in the local markets, so much great tasty produce that I can’t seem to find over here

    1. fredwilson

      Yes, our apt in paris was small and a bit cramped but we saw more of each other than we do at home!

  5. Jean-Christophe

    Fred, you should apply to lead our Paris Visitors Bureau !

  6. user239

    my younger sister is spending the next year studying architecture in paris. i’m trying to help her figure out affordable ways to keep in touch.were you able to use hotspot@home over the metro’s wifi?

    1. fredwilson

      I did not tryTmobile has an international voice and email plan for bberry users which I signed up forThere is no good option for texting internationally that I found

  7. Andrew Badr

    Over the Pompidou, I would pick any of the Rodin Museum, the Musee des Arts et Metiers (nerd heaven), and of course the Louvre. How of many of those did you visit?

    1. fredwilson

      I went to all of the ones you mention and enjoyed them but the modern art collection at the Pompidou is heaven for me

  8. shalz

    Wonderful pictures! Whets my appetite to visit Paris sometime soon :-)Any comments on the numbers showing up on techcrunch?

  9. Chipotle

    Being from San Diego with our car centric culture, we found living in Paris a revelation. Getting around sans car (the Metro, walking, and the velib) was liberating. The bread was pretty good, too.

  10. Camilo

    I was just in Paris this weekend. I agree with you, It is a great metropolis with a small town feeling. I visited the Pompiduo and the exhibit that produced in me the most emotion was the little kid praying. from behind I saw the image of a kneeling kid looking up to the heavens for help. Very sweet and moving. Then I walked to the front to see his face, and it shocked me to see Hitler. The contrast of emotions between that of a praying kid vs the monster that destroyed so many lives. Great art is the one that can produce strong emotions! Enjoy London!

    1. fredwilson

      We saw that piece in an exhibit last year in Venice and then we saw it againthis visit to the PompidouMy daughter Jessica hates it with a passion. It scares her. When she camearound the corner and saw it again, she jumped back in horror.

  11. salimismail

    Fred, you’re killing me. I lived in Paris for three years in the late 90s and miss it terribly. I must now take a trip…I used to say that a ‘French businessman’ was an oxymoron (some valley folks excepted, of course)… and my favorite quote came from a leading industrialist: [when asked ‘what is the problem with the French in business’], he replied, “the problem is that we work off the policy ‘it works in practice, but will it work in theory?’, which doesn’t work so well in business”.

  12. Yule Heibel

    Do you think that not having to wear bike helmets made a difference in how you used the Velib, Fred (or did you guys bring helmets)? I’ve actually stopped riding my bike because of our helmet laws (which I don’t want to break since I have kids, so I have to set an example).At the same time, many people here (in Victoria) flaunt the helmet law, and for casual riding to and from the store or even to and from work (if it’s not on the highways), that seems to work. (Then there are the “clever dicks” who place the helmet on their head, but don’t buckle it… Oh brother.)At the other extreme is the aerodynamic helmets and spandex crowd that outpaces cars every time.Europeans seem more casual about riding bikes, generally. I wonder if it makes it easier to blend bike use into everyday transportation?

    1. fredwilson

      I felt very naked and uncomfortable without a helmet and wished they wouldrent them tooIt’s not safe to ride a bike without a helmetfred

      1. kenberger

        you should see what it’s like renting a scooter in Cambodia: helmets don’t even exist!nor do the hospitals if something were to happen.although Vietnam just adopted a strict helmet law this year, practically overnight.

        1. Yule Heibel

          ^ Someone in the government probably has shares in a helmet production facility, haha!Seriously, though, re. wearing helmets: I understand that they enhance the cyclist’s safety by a whole lot — I just can’t stand the damn things. I don’t let my kids know that, though — I’ll tell ’em about my misspent, tokin’ & smokin’ disco-hopping school-skipping youth, but never about how I really feel about bike helmets! 😉

          1. kenberger

            guess you also don’t encourage them to read avc, lest they see those words here!the VN govt-helmet theory– plausible!