About Secrets of Paris

Created in 1999, the Secrets of Paris is the oldest independent and locally-owned website about Paris in English, for both visitors and residents. Discover what you've been missing:

* Free Resource Guide
* Calendar of interesting Paris events 
* Monthly Secrets of Paris newsletter
* Secrets of Paris Tours & Travel Planning

Read more about the Secrets of Paris here




Calendar of Paris Events

Through February 19
Skate on the Eiffel Tower! This year the ice skating rink on the first level of the Eiffel Tower is back, free for those who already have a ticket for the Tower, open daily 10:30am-10:30pm. Skip the line by taking the stairs, it will help you warm up, too! Skates size 25-47 (EU), sleds and scooters for kids, gloves are required. This year's theme is Ice Hockey, though it will be less brutal than the NHL!

January 11 - February 21
The annual winter sales, aka Les Soldes. Honestly, the rules about when and how sales can take place in France since the economic crise have essentially made the sales irrelevant. There are sales all of the time now (often called "promotion" or "7 Jours BHV" or something like that). 

Click here to see the full calendar of events...

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French Thrift Store Shopping Online

I'm a big fan of the French charity thrift shops Emmaüs. A bit like the St-Vincent-de-Paul or Salvation Army stores in the US, Emmaüs is a great place to find used items for a steal, and they also help reintegrate people back into the workforce. But like most people, I rarely have free time to go rummaging around their various shops in Paris, so I was thrilled to find their new online shop, Label Emmaüs, which selects the best clothing, accessories, furniture, decor, electronics, music, books, children's toys to sell online with delivery available throughout France. 

They also have a special category in the shop called Créations, which are "upcycled" items that are reworked, reimagined, reconditioned or customized by the Emmaüs team to give something destined for the landfill a new lease on life. If you're sick of having the same exact Ikea decor as all of your friends (in almost every Western country!), then this is the antidote. 

I also recommend checking out their Geek-a-Brac if you are nostalgic for vintage electronics, or their regular electronics section for almost-new electronics smartphones, laptops, video games, and all sorts of accessories you need that are already "obsolete" and hard to find in shops. While writing this article, I casually scrolled through this section and saw the exact same Kensington laptop docking station that has been in my FNAC shopping cart for over a month (I've been waiting for it to go on sale; no dice). Not only is it listed as "new" on Emmaüs, it's 50% off the price (so I just saved €70), and there's a 6-month guarantee that it will work (and 15-day money-back guarantee for any reason I'm not satisfied with the condition). 

If you still prefer shopping in person, you'll find a list of all of the Emmaüs shops in France here

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