Galeries Lafayette Haussmann is worth a visit if only to stand under its magnificent glass dome. The family business has survived as a one-stop-shopping hub for five generations, thanks to steady innovation and an emphasis on high fashion and design. Shoppers appreciate its easy VAT refund policy. There are also multiple restaurants, a rooftop terrace with stunning city views and a cultural space for rotating art exhibitions.
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Private Shopping in Le Suite
The second most visited attraction in Paris, Galeries Lafayette, can be more than a little overwhelming under the strain of crowds of tourists.
Cut through the crowds and reserve a VIP Personal Shopping experience in their rooftop Le Suite which is 400m private apartment that can be customized to fit almost any experience and fulfill almost any dream. Even if that dream is just picking out the perfect pair of Louboutin shoes without being elbowed.
Though don't limit yourself, let the stunning view of Paris inspire your wildest dreams and then dare them to make them come true.
Opened in 1893, this is THE place to shop in Paris. Even if you aren't into shopping, it is worth checking out the beautiful Belle Epoque architecture, the glass dome, and the ornate staircase. Insider Secret: There is a rooftop viewing area with faux grass and chairs for one of the best views in Paris.
For a cheap lunch with spectacular panorams of Paris, grab a sandwich-to-go from Cojean on Blvd Haussman and enjoy it atop the roof of Galeries Lafeyette. I was on top of the world with limitless views of the city's skyline that included the Eiffel Tower and Sacré Coeur.
I've been to Paris eight times, and it wasn't until my last trip in January that my traveling companion took me up to the rooftop of Galeries Lafayette for sunset. What an amazing view. If memory serves, they close the rooftop deck at 6pm, so sunset in winter is the time to see this amazing sight!
If your pockets are deep enough to indulge or if you are permeable to fancy labels and high fashion, then a stop to Galeries Lafayette Paris is mandatory for you.
The famous glass dome alone is worth the detour. It was built by architect Ferdinand Chanut and artist Jacques Grüber in 1912 during the major expansion/renovations of the department store and is often regarded as one of the prettiest Art Nouveau works in Europe, if not the world.
I can definitely see why! (And no I have not sinned - I didn't buy anything in the store, how wise and grown-up of me!)
This boutique grocery store is a great excuse to pursue the fashion aisles on your way to get the necessary foie gras, caviar, pastries, and international ingredients for your kitchen. It is sure to please with excellent service and experts offering tastings before you make your purchase. Stop in to see the ever-passionate chief cheese monger who regularly travels to small production cheese farms around France. Stop by for lunch, or drop in to pick up your goodies for a picnic in the park.
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The Best Free View in Paris
Depending on how you look at it, the rooftop terrace at Galeries Lafayette isn't exactly free, since you have to pass through all the opulent floors of the second most visited attraction in Paris after la Louvre to get to it. However, there is no entrance fee for the terrace so if you can make it all the way to the top without shopping you'll be rewarded with a near panoramic view.
Jean Paul Hevin is currently delighting chocolate-loving guests with a pop up café also on the terrace and those shoppers who need extra special attention can request access to the rooftop suite where personal shoppers can make almost any dream come true.