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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:

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Calendar of Paris Events

Through July 31
The 22nd annual Paris Jazz Festival: come enjoy traditional Parisian and international jazz music in the Bois de Vincennes's Parc Floral. Entrance to the park is 6 €.

Through August 21
The 30th annual Fête des Tuileries funfair with carnival rides at Tuileries Gardens starts today, free entry, rides with individual tickets. Plenty of food stands, too!

Through August 27
La Nuit aux Invalides is an impressive sound and light show in the courtyard of Invalides highlighting the monument's history (Louis XIV, Napoléon, Charles De Gaulle), in English on Monday and Thursday nights. Tickets €18 (adult price). See the teaser video.

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

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Friday
Jan162009

Scoop

Scoop
154 rue St Honoré, 1st
M° Palais Royal or Louvre-Rivoli
Tel 01 42 60 31 84

www.scoopcafe.fr

The Figaroscope gave this little café near the Louvre the honor of calling their burgers the best in Paris, and considering how many Parisian establishments do burgers, that's really saying something. For his birthday, my friend David wanted to have a hamburger, and since neither of us had been to Scoop yet, we braved the icy sidewalks after the January snows and headed over.

On the ground level is the epicerie and ice cream counter ("They make their own!" David the ice cream expert had told me beforehand), and upstairs a bright if small dining room with some low red sofas and tables next to regular tables, and exposed stone walls decorated with contemporary photographs. David ordered the "burger & milkshake" menu and I got a bacon cheese burger and a bottle of Heinekin (if I had a shake with my burger I'd have to either walk home or take a nap afterwards...not a good mix for me).

Only odd thing so far was that our polite waitress ran off without asking us how we wanted our burgers cooked, so we flagged her down and gave her the info. Our burgers came with little side salads and potatos, all perfectly cooked, and tasting quite delicious as if we had made them ourselves. "Always Fresh, always homemade", just as promised on the website. David was very happy with his chocolate milkshake (which I probably should have gotten; it was a reasonable size, not an enormous litre of dairy danger).The Illy coffee was served a bit weak, but otherwise all was good, and we even had a chance to chat with the owner downstairs.

It was packed at lunch, but if you come during the quieter hours, you can surf on Wi-Fi. Open for lunch, brunch and dinner.

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