Paris blossoms in the spring

The Edouard VII Hotel is a rare gem of a hotel, with hospitality reminiscent of yesteryear; their barmenu is pages long, featuring spa-style cocktails.

The enduring charms of Paris, Europe’s largest hub, are enticing, from designer hideaway apartments in the Marais to the magnificent reopening of the Petit Palais, where one is awestruck by the enduring charms of Sarah Bernhardt, thanks to her portrait, which hangs near the entrance. Here are a dozen ideas to make a few days, or even better, a few weeks, an irresistible spring getaway.

Arrive in style. Contact Carte Blanche Limousine (www.carteblanchelimousine or 011.33.146514466), to meet you at CDG International Airport or Orly. Their English-speaking drivers are prompt, knowledgeable and you might be so charmed, you’ll arrange for them to take you on a personalized tour to Normandy or Giverney. Cost of a meet and greet at CDG is around $160.

Stay at the Marais in style. Legendary designer Alia operates three luxury apartments adjacent to his boutique at 5 rue de Moussey. Each one- or two-bedroom apartment is reached by a private entrance. Each spacious apartment has an entertainment system by Bang and Olafson, high-speed Internet connection, exquisite Belgian linens and spacious bathrooms with oversized bathtubs. Alia is known for his clients, such as Tina Turner and Madonna, who appreciate the utter privacy of both his boutique and elegant apartments. The daily rate at “Three Suites” is around $480, with breakfast delivered to your door for an additional $30. E-mail: or call 011.33.144789200.

For the latest events and openings in Paris visit the Web site or call 011.33. 892683000. The office is at 25 rue de Pyramides. Ask about the Paris Visite card for five days on the Metro and the Paris Museum Pass for five-day entrance fees to museums from the newly relocated Musee de Cinema in the Bercy area to the finest collection of modern art in Europe (1,100 works of art) at the Centre Pompidou Musée. While you’re in the charming Bercy neighborhood, which was once a charming street where wine was stored, visit the Omnisens, a second story spa, where the latest in thalassotherapy treatments and products recreate the Brittany seaside. www.omnisens.Or contact Omnisens in advance at 011. 33.0143419696; plan a day of treatments, and request the Thai massage .If you yearn to visit designer outlets, you can’t do better than La Vallée open seven days a week. The CityRama shuttle can take you there every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. You’ll find major designers from Mandarina Duck to Kenzo, Givenchy and Christian LaCroix with marvelous markdowns at a minimum of 33 per cent. www.

Visit the new Memorial de la Shoah (17 rue Geoffroy-L’Asnier in the Marias; for meticulous documentation of the Holocaust, with an emphasis on what transpired under the Vichy regime. Of note is the fact that the very neighborhood where this remarkable museum is located was once a vibrant Jewish neighborhood before World War II. Today, many memorials can be seen on apartment buildings where Jewish occupants were ultimately deported. Today many school children and organizations visit the museum for lectures and special exhibits.

A new 26-treatment room spa will open in October at the Grand Hotel Barriere in Enghian-les-Bains, nine miles from Paris. The garden setting, overlooking a lake, is enchanting.

Do you want the most alluring eyes in Paris? Visit the Talika Spa, specializing in eye care, located in the hip Pershing Hotel, 49 rue Pierre Charron; www Make an appointment on Tuesday, as later in the day the “Women on Top” soirée, starting at 8 p.m., designed for women with an interest in fashion and, fun takes over. Created by Amaurey de Laurens of de Laurens Communications, this has become a popular event, with themes changing weekly. He says his concept of Women on Top was inspired by the television program, Sex in the City.

Themed gift bags include a treasure chest of designer products. Check it out at

If travel has taken its toll on your hair, consider a restorative treatment at Lenor Greyl at 15, rue Tronchet. More than a beauty salon or spa, the treatments, customized for your particular problem transforms hair from dull to dramatic. 011.33146075823;

Have a cocktail at the inimitable Edouard VII Hotel. The new bar menu is pages long, with a special section for spa-style cocktails. You’ll be enticed to stay for dinner. Guest rooms are compact yet charming, and soundproofed. The Opera Garnier is a few minutes walk. This is a rare gem of a hotel, with hospitality reminiscent of yesteryear.

Start planning now by checking out the Paris Convention and Visitor’s Bureau at 25, rue des Pyramides;

Purchase their five-day metro and museum cards in advance, then check out for enticing fares.

Carry a copy of Access Paris with you at all times, and you’ll never be lost. It’s the only guide that leads you street by street into the heart of the city, from the Latin Quarter to Montmartre and beyond.

Pamela Price is the coauthor of “100 Best Spas of the World” (