Shopping in the covered passages
Published on 5 January 2019, dans Fashion and Shopping
If you’re in the mood for a spot of shopping amidst beautiful surroundings this winter, then follow in the footsteps of the ladies in petticoats and gentlemen in frilled shirts who, in the first part of the 19th century, took advantage of the comfort and convenience of the covered passages to do their browsing and purchasing.
Chic under the canopy
Glass canopies and rotundas elegantly filter the light, mosaics decorate the floor, slender staircases, architectural flourishes, paintings and sculptures representing the glory of commerce; you are in one of the covered passages typical of the Right Bank in Paris. Built mostly between 1800 and 1830, these sheltered shopping arcades housed chic stores and allowed their rich clientele to avoid the inconvenience of inclement weather. Twenty of them still exist and you are invited to browse their cafes, restaurants, theatres and shops.
From one passage to another
As they are concentrated between the Palais Royal and the Grands Boulevards, you can easily wander from one covered passage to another. Stamp, coin and postcard collectors will be delighted by the dealers who set up shop in the Passage des Panoramas (one of the oldest in Paris), while the Passage Verdeau, close to the Hotel Drouot, is a must for those who love antiques and antiquarian books. Luxury boutique buffs will revel in the chic atmosphere of the Passage Vivienne, where fashion and décor reign supreme. Your explorations can continue in the very beautiful and neighbouring Galerie Véro-Dodat.
Ready for a break?
Even when sheltered from the wind and rain, shopping can be exhausting, so a break is always welcome. Fortunately, you’ll find plenty of exquisitely decorated cafes, restaurants and tea rooms in the covered passages. And if a craving for curry, turmeric, and spicy flavours suddenly takes you, head for the Passage Brady, where a selection of Indian, Pakistani, Mauritian, and Reunion restaurants warmly welcome you.
More information :
Hotel de l'Université, a charming hotel at the heart of Saint-Germain des Prés