Metro Station of the Month: Palais Royal (lines 1&7)

For once my metro station of the month will not be underground… but on earth as what is remarkable in that metro station is not the platform but the entrance which is my favourite metro entrance in Paris! It is the one of the metro station Palais Royal-Musée du Louvre, located in the first arrondissement of Paris on the Place Colette, near the Louvre and the Comédie Française which is one of the most famous theatres in the world.

This metro entrance has a name: it is called the ‘Kiosque des Noctambules’ and was imagined in 2000 by the French artist Jean Michel Othoniel to celebrate the centenary of the Parisian Metro. It looks like a candy or a jewelry box! Coloured Murano Glass beads are strung on an aluminum structure and build two domes similar to two royal crowns symbolizing the day and the night. The stairs are surrounded by an aluminum lace and the art work continues down the stairs with painted earthenware tiles and two display cases with coloured glass beads.

I like the contrast between this baroque and colourful Metro entrance and the very classical architecture of the buildings all around. It’s a shame that such a creative initiative has not been extended to other Metro entrances! I would have loved it!

Practical information : Website of the RATP

Christine Bokobza – Good Morning Paris B&B –

Metro Station of the Month: Parmentier (line 3)

The metro station Parmentier reopened yesterday after two months of renovation. Let’s discover this gem of the Parisian underground life: it is on metro line 3, in 11th arrondissement of Paris.

The station gets its name from the Avenue Parmentier, so called in 1818 in memory of Antoine Parmentier who died nearby five years earlier. Antoine Parmentier (1737-1813) was a French army pharmacist who is famous for being the one who promoted the nutritional values of potato and introduced its cultivation in France whereas it used to be forbidden due to its supposed toxicity. Anecdotally Parmentier discovered crushed potatoes in Germany where he had been taken prisoner.

The decor of the platforms celebrates potato in all its forms. The screened camber reminds the mesh of the potatoes’ net. Some objects from pre-Colombian America are displayed in glass cases and billboards tell the story of potato from America to Europe and the main uses in France for each variety of potatoes.

And do you know which is THE country for potato? It is Peru, where more than 4,000 different varieties of potatoes can be found!!

Back to earth: One can admire the metro way out with its typical Art Nouveau kiosk made by Hector Guimard. And if you have become a fan of Parmentier keep walking east in the Avenue de la République: you will arrive to the Père Lachaise Cemetery and will be able to put flowers on his grave!

Practical information : Website of the RATP

Christine Bokobza – Good Morning Paris B&B –

Metro Station of the Month: Pont-Neuf La monnaie (line 7)

Our Metro Station of the month is located in the first arrondissement of Paris, on Metro line 7: Pont-Neuf. Its complete name is indeed Pont-Neuf La monnaie.

What I like in this station is the beautiful reproduction of huge golden and silver coins which decorates not only the walls on both platforms but also the vault. This decor refers to the Hotel de la Monnaie, which is located on the left bank only a few meters walk from the metro way out after crossing the Seine. One can also admire on each subway platform a showcase in which the last creations of the Monnaie de Paris are displayed: currently a coin with Asterix and Obelix’s faces on it.

Back to earth: Do not miss the Hotel de la Monnaie of course, which shelters the Monnaie de Paris. It is presently being renovated and partially open. On 19 May 2015 the famous 3-star restaurant Guy Savoy is scheduled for being transferred from the 17th arrondissement to the Monnaie de Paris!

To get there cross the Seine on the Pont-Neuf which is… the oldest bridge in Paris, unlike its name! When it was built in the second part of 16th century, the Pont-Neuf was really new as it was the first bridge with sidewalks and without houses on it. It is today one of the most beautiful bridges accross the Seine in Paris and was made famous by Christo who wrapped it in 1985 or by film directors, such as Léos Carax with its remarkable movie ‘Les Amants du Pont-Neuf ‘(1991).

Practical information : Website of the RATP

Christine Bokobza – Good Morning Paris B&B –