Paris Bars For An Amusing Night Out On The Town

Paris offers so many experiences, so many venues, that whatever you feel like in the moment has an answer, a perfect place just waiting to satisfy. If one night you put on the stilettos and cocktail dress and sip bubbly from crystal flutes while sitting gazing deeply into the eyes of your mate, the next night you both may just head on out in a pair of jeans and kick it at a bar specializing in beers on tap, dispensed from re-fitted 1950's gas station pumps.  

Choices on this list range from a bar where Hemingway and Fitzgerald used to knock them back, to a terrace rooftop just a kiss away from the Arc de Triomphe, to a couple of chic cocktail clubs in the hip Montorgueil neighborhood.

Cocktails have definitely become all the craze in Paris, along with the rest of the civilized world, so you will readily find extensive cocktail menus. Many of these feature creative concoctions using cognac or champagne as an ingredient. Wine bars in Paris are their own genre so those you’ll most definitely discover on their own list. And since everyone whose ever been to Paris has found their way at least once to rue Daunou, you owe it to yourself to say hi to Harry while you’re in town. 



In its handful of years since opening, this place has become the cocktail institution. The founders, a group of badboy buddies, has since gone on to open several more clubs and even one in NYC. They are often credited (accurately or...  Read More

Barrio Latino
Photo courtesy of Barrio Latino Cocktails photo copyright Barrio Latino


If you enjoy a night of Salsa music and you feel like putting on your dancing shoes while you're in Paris, the Barrio Latino is the place to be. It's also a good place to just hang out with friends while you grab a cocktail and some small...  Read More

6th Arrondissement - Rive Gauche


Set decorated like a vintage gas station, this new-ish bar just around the cornder from Odéon has become a quick hit with beer lovers and wine aficionados. Part of the appeal is that you can self-serve your own beers, from taps that have been...  Read More

8ème Arrondissement
Bugsy's Bar & Restaurant
Photo courtesy of Bugsy's Bar Paris copyright 2014


Take it from me, even while you're on vacation, your guy is going to want to watch the game. After all, the World Cup happens only every 4 years and pity the loving mate who's dragged her man off to some sightseeing thang when there's a match to...  Read More

8ème Arrondissement


This bar's signature line is "haute couture cocktails." But don't let that frighten you, gentlemen, since they do honor sports here, too, and when there's a big rugby or soccer match on, you can often catch it here. There was a time when this...  Read More

16ème Arrondissement
Hotel Raphael Rooftop Bar
Photo courtesy of Hotel Raphael Paris Rooftop Bar photo copyright 2014 Cohen


This is the Parisian rooftop bar to beat all rooftop bars. Seriously. And I'll be honest, I am not one for hotel bars. But the rooftop bar of the Hotel Raphael, just a stone's throw from the Arc de Triomphe, is one of those gems you wish were...  Read More



Legend has it that Gershwin composed « An American in Paris » in the downstairs piano bar here. I don't doubt it as the other legend, that Fitzgerald drank himself unconscious at Harry's, seems to have held up through the ages. But most people...  Read More

8ème Arrondissement
Secret 8 by Buddha Bar
Photo courtesy of FB Secret 8 by Buddha Bar


The famed Buddha Bar needn't re-invent itself as a hipster speakeasy. It simply added a Secret Bar behind a hidden wall in a place you'd never suspect. So the big Buddha remains but if you're looking for a more intimate kind of evening, ask the...  Read More

9ème Arrondissement


Itching for a truly authentic tropical fruity cocktail? This Tiki Bar in the grand tradition of Tiki Bars is the only true Tiki Bar in Paris. Its owner is a devotee of the haloed pedigree that tiki bars have evolved from and it was with this...  Read More

6ème Arrondissement


Ever fantasized about having a drink with Emile Zola, Apollinaire and Paul Cézanne, or even Hemingway, Fitzgerald and Miller ? Les Lilas is the place. Or at least, in the 20's/30's it was, and especially on Tuesday nights when international...  Read More


Meet Paige Donner

Paige first arrived in Paris as a young bride in the early 90s, having uprooted herself from her native California.

Paige's latest novel, I'll Take Paris, is available on Kindle and Amazon....  More About Paige