best bet: merci

Yesterday we took you to Le Bon Marche for a spot of fashion; today we're taking you to Merci, our favourite Parisian lifestyle store.  Merci is located on the edge of the Marais, surrounded by a handful of artisnal designer furniture shops.  For those of you whose French is limited, merci means "thank you"; so you immediately get the sense that Merci is a store with a sophisticated and affable personality.  The concept store is divided into four parts: the cinema cafe, the lifestyle area, the women's fashion section and the men's fashion section.  We'd say Merci is strongest in terms of their lifestyle department and their cinema cafe; this is where the store really shines in terms of visual merchandising and unique point of difference.  They offer everything from chic bicycles, to hand-dyed scarves, to adorably packaged home gardening sets.  If it's fashion you're after we'd say the best they have to offer is in the accessories department: fantastic organic-inspired jewelry and cult-status K. Jacques sandals are our best bet buys.  If you've got time, we'd definitely recommend that you stay for a bite to eat or a coffee at their cinema cafe.  Decked out in old movie posters, DVDs of decades-old black and white movies, and long-expired movie tickets, you're surrounded by a wonderful feeling that you've become a part of old Hollywood.

Hand-dyed scarves, framed on the wall.  Love this VM idea.

The street-facing window at Merci's cinema cafe.

Guess what's inside?  A home gardening set.  How adorable is the packaging!

Delicious treats at the cinema cafe.

Chic bike.

Ane here's a vintage Fiat with Merci number plates parked outside the store in their cobblestone courtyard.  Love it!


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