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Less Obvious Sides of Paris and London

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A trip I took in June 2014.
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35 St James's St, St. James's, London SW1A 1HD, UK
The area around Pall Mall, that bastion of conservative high-living that makes one think of leather armchairs and bespoke suits, is one of my favorite parts of London to stroll through. The best concentration of this sort of thing is on Jermyn...
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Spencer House, 27 St James's Pl, St. James's, London SW1A 1NR, UK
I didn’t use a phone booth or a double-decker bus on my trip to London, but I did enjoy this moment when the two of them came together on a street just above Pall Mall.
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59 Rue de la Gare, 59470 Esquelbecq, France
You can get from London to Paris in a little more than two hours. It's almost too fast! The gentle cradling sensation, the blur of northern France's orderly countryside racing past, the breakfast tray of croissant, yogurt, and coffee--and the...
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2 Rue Richer, 75009 Paris, France
Underneath this fine smothering of kohlrabi is some of the most succulent pork cheek I’ve had. It was a great dish, one of several I had with two companions at Le Richer, a somewhat unassuming new-vibe restaurant in the fast-changing St-Denis...
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77950 Maincy, France
Forget Versailles! For my money, the better country palace-and-gardens complex to visit when you're in Paris is Chateau Vaux le Vicomte. It's outside Melun, which is a 25-minute train ride from the Gare de Lyon. Built in the mid-17th century by...
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11 Boulevard de la Bastille, 75012 Paris, France
I passed this boats-at-rest scene on the lower Canal St-Martin while walking to the Gare de Lyon from Bastille. I've always it an under-appreciated element of Paris, all these charming boats that you find moored right in town. (Most people only...
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34 Rue des Rosiers, 75004 Paris, France
Located in the Marais, L'As Du Falafel likes to boast about its connection to rocker Lenny Kravitz. Specifically that he has endorsed the falafel sandwich here. You don't need me to tell you this. Just go here: it's posted all over the walls. The...
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5 Rue de Palestine, 75019 Paris, France
More rough-and-tumble and far less touristy than the Tuileries and Luxembourg gardens, the Parc des Buttes-Chaumont is a green space that's worth a visit—especially given the recent resurgence of its surrounding district, the formerly...
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213 Bis Boulevard Saint-Germain, 75007 Paris, France
Ok, so these are decidedly a step (or three) up from the reproduction "Chat Noir" posters that you hung in your dorm room in college. Elbé, in St. Germain, has been selling vintage wall art since 1974 and is the place in-the-know Parisians go to...
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31 Rue d'Alexandrie, 75002 Paris, France
The menu at Edgar, a 13-room hotel and restaurant in the fast-changing Ninth Arrondissement, consists mainly of Barcelona-inspired seafood. If you’re not put off by octopus tentacle, I highly recommend this tasty lunch dish. It was perfectly...