Paris, J’Taime


If you’ve been following my blog for a while now, you’ll know that over the Easter weekend Dave and I headed to Paris for a city break. I hadn’t been to Paris in a very long time, we had never been together and for as long as we have been together, we’ve been planning on going. So needless to say, I was super excited about our trip.

There’s just something about the air in Paris, isn’t there? If you’ve been before you’ll know exactly what I mean. It just screams chic. The style, the architecture, the fashion, the attitude, the personality, the atmosphere. The effortlessness of it all is intoxicating and you find yourself wondering what your life would be like if you were born a Parisian.

We arrived late on Thursday evening so it was straight to bed for a good nights sleep, I had a lot planned so wanted to make sure we were both up to getting everything done. Our hotel was a small boutique hotel, and while it was fine, the location wasn’t really what we’d hoped for. We were staying in what we thought was Le Marais, but actually it was further out. So thank god for the Metro!

We did so much so I’m not going to go into everything, but rather share what the highlights of the trip were for me. And hopefully, if you’re off to Paris anytime soon, it will give you some tips on where to go and what to do!

SITES

Moulin Rouge

 
Our first stop was the Moulin Rouge and Montmartre. I have always wanted to see the Moulin Rouge, as cheesy as it might be, I’m kind of fascinated with that period of Paris in the early 1900s; the champagne parties of the rich and famous, the artists, painters and writers who hung out there for inspiration, and the artistic movement in general around that time.

It seems like it was a great time to live. So it was great to see it in person and for a moment imagine what life would have been like back then.

Musée du Louvre

An obvious Tourist attraction, the Louvre is as much a monument as a museum.  The infamous glass pyramid is the first thing that greets you as you arrive at the Louvre Palace, and alone is worth a visit. It’s quite a spectacular site to see and the setting of the Palace grounds that it sits in, are just stunning. Unfortunately unless you arrive very early however, it’s hard to take it all in with the thousands of tourists that gather there each day, but you can still appreciate the grandeur of the buildings and architecture.

You could easily spend an entire day wandering the halls and exhibits of the Louvre, but as we were pressed for time, we made our way straight to the Italian and Greek artists. As with most people who visit the Louvre, the Mona Lisa was the top of my list and it was amazing to see it in real life. Smaller than I imagined it to be, but amazing. Next on my list was the Venus Di Milo statue, which again was incredible. So much of art history is housed in the Louvre, and while I’m certainly no art connoisseur, we really enjoyed the few hours that we spent here.

Pont Neuf

Initially Pont Neuf was not on my plan for the trip, but for as long as I can remember, I wanted to go to the Love Lock Bridge in Paris. Traditionally this was the Pont des Arts, but in 2015, the French authorities had to remove all the love locks from the Ponts des Arts due to the weight of the locks damaging the infrastructure of the bridge.

Although I had read about this last year, I didn’t realise all the locks were gone so when we arrived to nothing but empty railings, I was so disappointed. That was until, I discovered that a new place had been designated to the Love Locks, the Pont Neuf.

Once I discovered this, we made our way to the Pont Neuf, lock in hand (because I am that cheesy), and added our lock to the thousands of others that reside there. Then we sat in the sun overlooking the water taking it all in. Even if you’re not a hopeless romantic, this is still worth a visit, even just to see the thousands of locks and messages that people have left there. Not to mention the stunning views it has of the city.

You can’t help but be overcome with warm fuzzy feelings there, I even asked Dave to propose to me again, just because it was so romantic. As you can imagine, he was having none of it! Although there was no second proposal, I loved it all the same.

Le Marais

Friends who travel to Paris a lot told me that Le Marais was the place to be, hence why we booked our hotel there (well what we thought was there). It is a historic district full of gorgeous boutiques, gourmet cafes, fashion houses and hip galleries and therefore a must for any trip to Paris.

I could have spent hours (and a lot of money) wandering through the small streets shopping, eating and drinking – the fact that the weather was glorious for our visit was an added bonus too. We went for lunch, strolled around the shops then found ourselves a lovely cafe where we sat drinking wine watching the world go by. The perfect way to while away an afternoon in the city of love.

Eiffel Tower

There’s really not much to say about the Eiffel Tower as it speaks for itself. As you would imagine, it is a haven for tourists so this place is busy all the time. I read somewhere that it’s the most visited, paid monument in the world with over 20,000 visitors a day. So that might give you an idea of just how busy it is.

Because of this, we didn’t spend too much time here, but we did stroll around the Champ de Mars for a while taking it all in.  You cannot come to Paris and not visit the Eiffel Tower, that infamous picture so many of us have in our minds of this city is the Eiffel Tower. But if you plan on going up the tower then be prepared for a long wait and lots of queuing.

RESTAURANTS

L’Avenue

L’Avenue is a restaurant located near the upscale area of Avenue George V, off the Champs Elysees and so many people recommended us going here. Over the years I’ve read loads about it, so it’s been on my wish list for a long time and finally I got here!

The restaurant is a combination of luxury interiors, tasty food and lots of hip and trendy Parisians, and is one of the places to be seen in Paris.

We booked in advance for lunch as it’s always super busy and spent the morning strolling along the streets taking in all the fabulous stores such as Chanel, Dior and Diane von Furstenberg. After a little shopping we arrived for lunch and we were not disappointed.

Champagne flowing, I ordered a Prawn Risotto and Dave went for a Mushroom Rigatoni, and they were delicious. I ate so slowly, savouring every bite it was that good. This was then followed by dessert which for me was a Lemon Sorbet with a Pecan Tuile, and a Tarte Tatin for Dave. Again delicious.

The restaurant isn’t cheap so be prepared to pay if you decide to go here. But for the food and the experience, it’s definitely worth it in my view. We had a lovely long lunch, and it made for the perfect afternoon. I’ll definitely be going back, especially as I discovered they do the skinniest fries I’ve ever seen, and skinny fries are my fav. I will need to have these in my life at some point!

Ferdi

Again after several recommendations and lots of hype, we paid a visit to Ferdi one night for dinner. It’s not what you might expect from a Paris restaurant given that it’s actually a burger joint but my god is it the best burger I’ve ever had. This restaurant is hidden away on a small quiet street in the Opera district, and unless you know about it, you’d probably never venture in.

The décor is red, like a lot of Parisian eating spots, but the interior is super fun and quirky with teddy’s, dolls and miniature cars dotted around the place. It’s small but cosy, with a great, relaxed atmosphere and the cocktails are delicious.


Given that it’s famous for its Cheeseburger and Churros, that’s what we ordered and we literally could have eaten it all over again afterwards. Not because we weren’t full, but because it was literally the best burger we ever had. So boldly delicious!

Le Petit Marché

 
Le Petit Marché is a little French bistro situated in Le Marais and I had heard loads about it so we added this to our list of restaurants and asked our hotel to book us a table. It’s small, it’s rustic and absolutely buzzing and we were excited when we arrived.

We both decided on Steak with pepper sauce, it was a little difficult to figure out the entire menu as neither of us speak French very well. As with a lot of Parisian restaurants, the staff did not speak English and there were no English menus. So if you decide to go here make sure you bring your dictionary si vous ne pouvez pas parler Français.

Our meal was so perfectly French, and I washed my steak down with a beautiful glass of Cotes du Rhone, as I did with so many of my meals in Paris and it was a lovely last dinner to have before bidding farewell to this fabulous city.

So there you go – a snapshot of our trip away. There was so much more that we did, and so much more that we wanted to do and didn’t get done. What better excuse to have to go back another time though.

We had such an incredible weekend and I can completely understand why people fall in love with Paris when they visit, it’s an intoxicating city in the best possible way and I’m already looking forward to planning another trip.

All that’s left for me to say now is Paris, J’Taime…

Sorcha x

It’s Off To A Wedding We Go

Happy Saturday guys, I hope you’re all having a lovely weekend so far, despite the miserable weather we’re having in Dublin. If you’re further afield, I hope your weather is better than it is here!

So this morning we are off to my good friends Julie and Jeff’s wedding in the stunning Borris House in Carlow.

Photo online from dkphoto.ie

I’ve heard so many things about this venue, and as you can see from the picture it looks absolutely gorgeous so we’re very excited to get there and celebrate with our lovely friends.

This is our third wedding of the year so far so there’s a lot of love in the air at the moment and it’s amazing. If you’ve been following my blog up to now, you’ll know that I’m a bit of a hopeless romantic and I absolutely love a good wedding.

Knowing my friend Julie this is going to be a very special day with lots of amazing things going on so keep an eye on my social media to have a look at it all. My Instagram is: http://www.instagram.com/simplysorcha and my Snapchat username is: imsimplysorcha. I’ll be sharing a full post next week on our weekend too.

I’ll also share a full wedding outfit post, but for now here’s a sneak peak…

  
Clearly the hair isn’t finished yet but I’ll take it down just before we arrive so that the curls are nice and bouncy. As I’m wearing a black dress I’ve also gone for a charcoal smokey eye.

We’re on the road now so I’ll sign off for the weekend, hope you all have a great one.

Sorcha x

Mama’s Day!

It’s that day of the year where we get to celebrate all the incredible, amazing Mamas out there. Our own Mums, our grandmothers, our aunts, our friends…

 

Where would we be without our Mamas? I for one would be lost without my Mum, she is my confidant, my advisor, my helper, my calmer, my friend. And today I thank her for always being there.

  
So Happy Mother’s Day to all you lovely Mamas, I hope you all have a wonderful day!

Sorcha x

Wedding, Photos, Love

Well this is the post you’ve all been waiting for (well maybe not!) but a couple of weeks back, I promised to share a full post on our wedding photography once I received all the images from our photographers. I’m so excited to say that the time has finally come and I hope you won’t be disappointed!

Can I just start by showing you the amazingly cute packaging that our USB key arrived in. Because oh my god, seriously, I’ve never seen anything like this before!

I opened the parcel to find this little wooden box, which slides open. And inside was not only the cutest ever matching wooden USB key, but also some Polaroids of some of our pictures and a little magnet. I’m all about the details, and this was just the icing, on top of the icing of the cake!

Our wedding photographers were the amazing Paul and Elaine from Moat Hill Photography. Like most brides, I didn’t know where to start when looking for a wedding photographer so put a lot of time into researching different people. I asked all my friends who had been married for recommendations, I trawled through magazines and wedding blogs, and I read what felt like hundreds of reviews online, until I came across Moat Hill.

The minute I came across their website I was sold. The decision was made. Aside from the small task of getting Dave on board too, I knew these were the photographers for us. I needn’t have worried about Dave either because once he saw some images of previous weddings they had done, he was in agreement and we pretty much booked them on the spot!

Of course we still had to meet with them, but we were pretty sure nothing could happen that would change our minds, and we were right. When we met with Paul to run through our vision for the day, we instantly clicked with him. He has that incredible ability to be super professional, whilst also being completely laid back – the sign of someone truly passionate about what they do in my opinion.

We didn’t want just standard wedding photos, now don’t get me wrong, of course we wanted some traditional pictures, but we also wanted in the moment, good and bad, funny and sad. We wanted relaxed. And we knew that’s exactly what we would get after just a few short minutes into our meeting with Paul.

On our wedding day itself, both Paul and Elaine were such a pleasure to work with. One of the things we loved most when we decided to book them was the fact that they both could come to shoot our wedding meaning nothing would get missed. Elaine spent the morning with the boys, while Paul spent the morning with my girls and I, and honestly it was all just so easy going. They fitted in so well, we hardly even knew they were there! We completely put our trust in them for the day, we had no lists, we just let them guide us through it all and I’m so glad we did because we were not disappointed.

How they managed to capture every little detail of our day the way they did, is incredible to me. They missed nothing and it has been so amazing to see our day through their eyes. As a bride or groom, you miss so much of what is going on because you’re so busy, so it has been a very special experience being able to now see the day unfold through our pictures.

So here you go, here’s a little taster of just some of our incredible photos:


So there you go, eeeek! I hope you like them as much as we do!

I haven’t shared too many pictures as I plan on doing a few more posts. I have a very funny story about my dress which a couple of friends have told me I have to share on the blog so I might do that soon, and I’ll do a separate post on all the little intricate details too if you would like to see them so just let me know.

Obviously there are many great wedding photographers out there, but Moat were just perfect for us, we honestly couldn’t have asked for any better. So to any of you budding brides out there looking for something a little less ordinary, I would definitely recommend checking them out: www.mhphoto.ie.

And as I say so often, oh how I wish I could do it all over again…

Sorcha x

Spread The Love

Happy Valentine’s Day all!

It’s not really a genuine holiday I know, but the hopeless romantic in me just can’t help being a sucker for Valentine’s Day each year.

I spent many Valentine’s Days single, down, and lonely so I sympathise with anyone else feeling that way today. But even so, I never hated the day, I just longed for the moment that I would have someone to share it with, and that moment finally happened three years ago when I met Dave.

I woke up to a massive bunch of beautiful roses this morning from my amazing hubby, it’s our first Valentine’s Day as Mr & Mrs so forgive the cheese, please!

  
Love isn’t just romantic; it’s family, it’s friendship, it’s children, it’s whatever love means to you. So whoever you’re with, or whatever you’re doing, in the spirit of this day, let’s spread the love into the blogosphere. 

This Valentine’s Day the hubby is off playing golf and I’m spending it having a girls day with my Mum, Sister and my Nieces.

Happy Valentine’s Day… I hope it’s a love-ly one!

Sorcha x