About Secrets of Paris

American-born travel journalist and guidebook author Heather Stimmler-Hall created the Secrets of Paris in 1999 to share the hidden side of the City of Light. Discover what you've been missing:

* Custom Travel Content
* Travel Writing Workshops
* 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

June 4
The 16th annual Carnaval Tropical parade with 4000 dancers celebrating French West Indies cultures as well as other dancers from Brazil, China, Colombia and other nations around the world. They start at Hôtel de Ville at 2pm, up to Place de la République until 6pm. Come see the dancers and try out the exotic foods on sale! 

June 19
Get out your fancy hats and picnic baskets for the annual Prix de Diane races at Chantilly Hippodrome (just 45 minutes north of Paris from Gare du Nord). Read more about the event from previous years here. 

June 24-26
Solidays is one of the best summer music festivals in France. This event unites more than 150 musicians (including Cypress Hill and Keziah Jones) and 160,000 attendees every year in the fight against AIDS, and this summer is expected to be bigger and better than ever. Day passes starting at €39.  

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

Secrets of Paris gives 10% of all tour fees to the French food bank, Les Restos du Coeur

Entries in Louvre (7)

Sunday
May082016

Will.i.am Sings in the Louvre: Mona Lisa Smile  


Will.i.am - Mona Lisa Smile with Nicole Scherzinger by Louvre

On April 12th the American singer Will.i.am (one of the founding members of the Black Eyed Peas) released this music video reinterpreting his song "Mona Lisa Smile" from his album #Willpower. Set in the Louvre, it features the singer Nicole Scherzinger as La Jaconde, and Will.i.am in over a dozen of the museum's most famous paintings. How many can you identify?

And for those of you who know the Louvre well, you'll quickly realize the wall with the Mona Lisa on it (which should be in Salle 6), is actually superimposed into another gallery of paintings with red walls. Can you guess which one? (hint: look at the ceiling)

This video isn't just a one-off gimmick by the singer, he's actually been planning this for several years. According to the Louvre website:

"This remarkable and unprecedented collaboration is the fruit of many years of work. In 2010, the Louvre welcomed a production team from New York to film a documentary that was part of the “Visionaries” series. This episode was devoted to will.i.am and used to launch Oprah Winfrey’s TV channel, OWN. Deeply inspired by his visit to the world’s largest museum, will.i.am tapped into the experience to create a video for the song “Mona Lisa Smile.” But the creative juices didn’t stop there: the artist sought to perpetuate, and especially share with others, his great appreciation for the museum by producing a documentary on the newly renovated rooms of the Department of Decorative Arts and the surrounding galleries."

After this Will.i.am was inspired to film a 12-minute documentary called "Will.i.am at the Louvre", a sort of "Highlights of the Louvre" tour with the editor of Wired UK and the curator of the Decorative Arts department (where he falls in love with an elaborate 18th-century clock). This is a great little video to watch if you're hesitant to visit the Louvre, because it shows how it's so much more than just paintings and the Mona Lisa. 


will.i.am at the Louvre by Off

The funniest quote is when he's in the stunning (and highly gilded) Napoléon III Apartments, and his guide infers that it must look like the interior of many hip-hop moguls houses, and Will.i.am responds, "Oh no, we don't do it like this. They put the gold in their teeth." But generally it's a great documentary about how art is still important to today's culture. You'll also learn the meaning of the fabulous French phrase, l'esprit de l'escalier.

You can follow Will.i.am's Louvre tour yourself here.

Sunday
Jun082014

Newsletter #142: June 8, 2014

In this Issue:

* Big Announcement:

* Museum Pass & Picasso 
* More Security for Paris Tourists 
* Fun New Airport Hotel
* Bonpoint Baby Clothes Outlet
* Art Studio Open House 
* The Paris Store 
* Paris Pastry Update
* Wine by the Tube
* Secrets of Paris News & Calendar

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Nov302013

Newsletter #132: November 2013

In this issue:

* December in Paris
* Shipping & Storing Luggage
* Museum News
* Sponsor an Animal at the Zoo de Vincennes
* Smartphone & Tablet SOS!
* Holiday Gift Ideas
* Recommended Paris Reading
* Hipsters Are Destroying Paris?
* Compost in Paris

Click to read more ...

Monday
May232011

N'Importe Quoi Photo of the Week

Welcome to Paris. Want to see the city's most famous monuments? Take a  river cruise down the Seine...brought to you by (insert big corporate ad name here). I'm not sure what's more offensive: advertisements on historic monuments, or the unpaid interns on the boat cruise who are impossible to understand. Buyer beware....

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Mar132011

Paris Museum Ticket Tips

Navigating the maze of Paris museum ticket options can be a nightmare. The goal? Avoid lines, save money, feel like the savvy traveler your friends think you are. The problem? The amount of time you spend trying to avoid standing in line is instead spent in front of your computer comparing the different ticketing options.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Aug312010

Louvre Saxophonist

I was walking through the Passage Richelieu at the Louvre earlier this month, between the I.M. Pei Pyramid and the Place du Palais Royal, and had to stop and listen to this street musician for a moment. Makes a nice change from accordion players mangling La Vie en Rose.