FrontRunners: French Culture
The jewelry and watch house Van Cleef & Arpels (www.vancleef-arpels.com) has given its flagship boutique in Paris a lavish makeover. The shop, located below the firm’s jewelry atelier at 22 Place Vendôme, features curved panels with a sculpted vine motif and winged mannequins draped in jewels. The second level includes rooms where you can have dinner or where you can more closely inspect the merchandise.
Located two miles away, the restaurant Les Ombres (The Shadows) at the new Musée du quai Branly (www.quaibranly.fr) also deserves a visit. The museum sits near the base of the Eiffel Tower, and at night the eatery’s outdoor terrace provides a fine view of the brightly lit landmark. During the day, the source of the restaurant’s name becomes apparent, as bold metal latticework on its high glass ceiling casts slashes of shadow over the tables. The museum displays art from Africa, Asia, Oceania, and the Americas, and so chef Arno Busquet offers culinary hints of those cultures in his otherwise French dishes.