8 Reasons Black Americans should STILL visit Paris

September 19, 2016 2:39 PM

Kim Lee Baker

Lifestyle Writer

8 Reasons Black Americans should STILL visit Paris

Paris has more to offer than The Mona Lisa, The Eiffel Tower and croissants. Certainly, don’t miss these staples and the others, time permitting.  Paris, however, indeed, has soul not to be missed. These points will inspire you to place Paris, back at the top of your wander-list:

1.    Perhaps the most important mention, the cost of hotel stays are down … way down. With the help of an app called Hotel Tonight, you’ll see exactly how low you can go. Also, Innclusive and Noirbnb are set to launch soon - fingers crossed for Paris to be on the available cities list.

2.    Music celebrations in Paris are a plenty. As of last year, Afropunk (originating in Brooklyn, now also includes Atlanta and London) launched a Paris event. Fête de la Musique (Music Festival)  remains a summertime can’t miss—it’s part national Holiday, part dancing in the streets, nothing short of dope.


3.    Dine at Coretta - named for Coretta Scott King and located across the rue from Parc Clichy-Batignolles - Martin Luther King. This French, neo-bistro also has a Michelin guide mention. For African flavors in a luxurious setting, Café Dapper Loïc Dablé is housed inside Musée Dapper (Dapper Museum), home to African arts since 1986.

Chef Loïc Dablé

4.    Canal Saint-Martin and the surrounding area in the 10eme (10th arrondissement or neighborhood) showcases Parisian culture with an urban vibe. Enter Le Comptoir General hosting DJ sets and offering an Afro-retro, chabby-chic space.  Point Ephemere has you covered for rooftop toasting and haute, street food style eats. Le Camion Qui Fume, known as one of the quitessiantial food trucks in Paris, is also regularly parked there. Le Bizz’Art is a staple for afterwork Soul sets, plus, some artists you may have heard of have graced the stage or are booked for upcoming shows.

Le Comptoir General

5.    Visiting a bit of Black American history in Paris is not a tough task—be like James Baldwin and have coffee at Café de Flore. Visit picturesque and Instagram ready Montmarte where Ada ‘Bricktop’ Smith hosted the cool kids at her numerous nightclubs. Visit Le Vésinet where Josephine Baker lived at Le Beau Chêne (now a private residence) from 1929 until 1947. Mme. Baker’s Château des Milandes is a 5+ hour drive from Paris.

6.    Hidden, speakeasy style cocktail’n is buzzing in Paris with the likes of Moonshiner (pizza in the front, party in the back), Candalaria and others. The Pigalle area (think Moulin Rouge) offers a N’awlins feel bar, named for Creole legend Lulu White.

Lulu White Bar

7.    Shopping black owned with a Parisian twist is possible at MMM by MyriaM Maxo – a major find for home décor. You’ll be the best souvenir-giver, ever, with T’s like this from 9km.

Designer MyriaM Maxo

8.    Missing the comforts of home happens. Never fear that Gumbo Yaya has you covered with melt in your mouth soul food … chicken and waffles, cornbread, collard greens, sweet potatoes and plus.


Bon voyage !

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