— March 22, 2012 —

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 asophisticated 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!