Top 5 concept stores in Paris

Top 5 concept stores in Paris

From gadgetry to stationary, the French has the concept store sussed

First came the boutique, then the boutique lifestyle and, with that, the concept store. Envisioning a chic, but all-encompassing shop, in the 1990s retailers started steering shops towards a lifestyle theme, developing what is today known as the concept store. Here are five of Paris’ best…

1. Colette

It’s an idea that caught on like wildfire. One of the first of its ilk was 10 Corso Como in Milan, Italy. But it is in Paris that entrepreneurs have seized on to the idea of concept stores like nowhere else, with dozens popping up across the capital over the past decade or so. Colette (colette.fr) was the first, blazing the trail with its opening in March 1997. Priding itself in always being ahead of the curve, the 700-square-meter, three-story shopping experience in the first district’s Rue Saint-Honoré – one of Paris’s most fashionable streets – is a stunning symphony of luxury clothing, streetwear, gadgetry, art, beauty products and designer waters. Need inspiration for the man in your life? Head straight for the Maison Kitsuné wallets and passport holders.

2. FrenchTrotters

It’s so cutting-edge it’s almost falling off of it. FrenchTrotters (frenchtrotters.fr) that is, where you’ll discover the perfect scented candle/T-shirt/pyjama set/coffee mug / pair of espadrilles that you simply cannot live without.

3. L’Exception

The beauty of L’Exception (lexception.com) lies in its cross-section of price points, agreeable to most budgets. With over 400 brands – from famous luxury labels to young designers for both men and
women – L’Exception champions up and coming French designers and gives priority to designers who craft and create in French or European studios. Also peddling food, beauty essentials, stationery, furniture and books like Be Hype Fashion, a visit here definitely lives up to the hype.

4. Le Marché Noir

With secondhand garments and handmade accoutrements Le Marché Noir (marchenoir.co) on the picturesque Rue Perrée is a celebration of ghetto style. Founder, Amah Ayivi, a former casting director and native of Togo calls it a ‘style office’ as opposed to a shop. A worldwide first of its kind, at least 90 per cent of its stock is sourced from Africa,
but you will find the odd Ralph Lauren coat thrown in for good measure. Homespun pieces procured from small African producers come in the shape of printed clothing made from bogolan (a Malian fabric), embroidered tunics and vividly hued blouses. Next door you’ll stumble across Indonesian shell lamps and antique quilts as you sip on hibiscus tea in an artfully unkempt setting.

5. Gab & Jo

A multi-brand boutique Gab & Jo (gabjo.fr) is proudly, 100 per cent, made-in-France-French.  The husband and wife owners, who named the store after their children, have made it their mission to present fines accessories and home décor that doesn’t take itself too seriously. From Marseille soap by Marius Fabre, Monsieur Marcel t-shirts, MILF sunglasses and candles for each Parisian arrondissement, such as the 6e, with notes of lipstick, cognac, orange blossom, tuberose, jasmine, rose and fig, Gab & Jo wants you to take an authentic, yet classy, piece of Paris home with you.

 

Source: Condé Nast Traveller Middle East

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