- Worldly salons during the Restoration, shortcuts fallen to decrepitude under Baron Haussmann, romantic hideaways and mercantile corridors…strange paradoxes indeed.
- Mosaic floors, painted ceilings, and neoclassical sculptures, glass domes: a sumptuous décor, precursor to Europe’s covered passageways.
- Places full of magic, tranquility and effervescence of inspiration to writers and photographers.
- A place for every kind of temptation: unusual boutiques, ornate bistros, antiquarians, and bookshops.
Today the covered, sky-lit passages of Paris remain eclectic havens of pedestrian shopping arcades and sheltered cafes. Some are well trodden, others easier to miss, some are swanky and ornate, others more modestly adorned, but all offer a glimpse into a 19th-century Paris of shopping delights.
2-hour classic tour
Venture inside these galleries originally built to link two adjacent neighborhoods, and then converted into luxurious shopping malls, beautifully and naturally lit by the magnificent glass roofs protecting them. Get a feel for 19th-century Paris by plunging into this artistic and elegant world of luxury and fantasy. While visiting the courtyard of the Palais Royal, and the Véro-Dodat, Vivienne, and Colbert galleries, your guide will reveal the secrets tucked into these places, as well as the social mores of the period…