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The Perfect Parisian Day in LA

Though the travel bug has us itching for some European jet-setting this summer, astronomical airfares will prevent us from fleeing to Paris anytime soon. Wouldn't life be perfect, though, if you could spend even a few days in the City of Lights, strolling through the Louvre and sampling macaroons?  Well, you can get the full Parisian experience without having to leave "Les Anges" (aren't we tres Francais?) or suffer the indignity of eating s*it in Dior.  Celebrate the upcoming Bastille Day holiday with our Broke Girl's Guide to The Perfect Parisian Day In LA:

Start your morning at Cafe Marcelita on 3rd St. This is where Olivier Martinez (swoon) gets his pain au chocolat. While you're there, use Cafe Marcelita's free wi-fi to sign up for free French language lessons on Livemocha.

Next, head to The Getty for the Paris: Life & Luxury exhibit, or stop by Book Soup or The Beverly Hills Public Library to pick up The Paris Wife, Dud Avocado, Lunch In Paris, or perhaps some classic French literature by Rimbaud, Baudelaire or Sartre.  Post up at The French Crepe Co. or Vive Le Crepe  to eat, read, and sample some of the hottest bands in Paris right now -- The Big Crunch Theory, Gush, Black Minou, Fotune, Poni Hoax, Moriarty, Ben l'oncle Soul, or Indi Zhara -- on your iPod.

After your long, lazy lunch, you'll need to re-energize. Grab a friend and head to Roxbury Park for an afternoon game of croquet.  Be sure to call (310) 550-4761 to ensure the green and equipment are available. While the French may have a laissez-faire attitude towards life, in LA it's more like laissez-FML for those who don't plan ahead.

When you're ready to retire your mallet, grab a glass of wine Comme Ca, which has a daily happy hour (weekends, too) from 5-7 p.m. Wine and cocktails are as low as $5, and appetizers like dungeness crab croquettes are around $8.  Or, on July 14 (Bastille Day!) only, go by Fig & Olive for a complimentary French wine and cheese tasting.

Afterward, freshen up and head to Echo Park for dinner at Taix, where the Cuisine 'Grand-Mere' (er, 'daily special') is $20 or $24 with soup and salad courses.  

To finish the night, party it up at Hemingway's (in honor of our most famous ex-pat).  Afterward, grab a little hangover prevention at La Poubelle, which has a late night menu 'til the very American after-hour of 12:30a.

If you’re still wired from all the obligatory espresso consumed throughout the course of the day, Netflix Love Me If You Dare, Jules Et Jim, Everyone Says I Love You, La Vie En Rose or Amelie. Or, if the mood strikes you, catch a late night showing of Midnight in Paris and soak up the real City of Lights (past AND present) at its most luminous.  You'll fall asleep a happy little Parisian, dreaming of croissants, crepes, and cabernets; that is, of course, until the neighbor's yappy chihuahua wakes you from your reverie. C'est la vie...

What to 'Pack':

1. Catarzi Stripe Wide Brim Straw Hat, $52.58
2. Orange Metal Arm Square Sunglasses, $36
3. Ben l'Oncle Soul
4. The Paris Wife, by Paula McLain
5. ASOS Contrast Handle Flat Lock Across Body, $25.86
6. ASOS Mini Pussybow Shirt Dress with Shirred Cuffs, $60.34
7. Aldo SHERFF, $55.99

Jul 12, 2011 - 08:14 AM

cheap drinks, cheap activities, cheap eats, french food