This brave man came to our informal but female-dominated blogger meet at Les Deux Magots. Well, he is a blogger and we were delighted he joined us but that wasn't the first time I had heard of Richard Nehem or his tour business and blog named Eye Prefer Paris. In fact, his name kept popping up and I usually heed those weird types of connections, especially when they come from different sources across the Atlantic. Months ago my local friend attended the Eye Prefer Paris cooking classes Richard offers in Paris with chef and caterer Charlotte Puckette, co-author of the bestseller The Ethnic Paris Cookbook...... which sounds like a tasty way to spend time in Paris but unfortunately it wasn't going to fit the time agenda this time around so the name didn't mentally imprint as well as usual. When Vicki mentioned that we were going to meet up with Richard from Eye Prefer Paris for dinner, the name began to ring a strong bell.
Richard has one of those intriguing stories that I heard countless times while meeting new friends in Paris. Pack it in, pack it up, move to another part of the world, and follow a new career path. And why not? Who doesn't want to move to Paris? After running a successful event planning business in New York for years, the ex New Yorker took his extensive Paris travel experience and in 2005 he parlayed it into the successful Eye Prefer Paris tours and blog. The sociable guide admits "I meet the most wonderful people from around the world". The lively and diverse Marais district is now Richard's "hood" and he lives in a 18th century apartment within smelling distance of that rotisserie chicken that I wrote about here.
This would have been the second time I visited Paris without having seen the Marais district had it not been for meeting Richard and because Vicki and Carla (Carla Loves Photography) kept telling me it is one of the most fascinating and "must-see" districts of Paris. And they were all more than correct. By this time I was "mapped-out", or I should say my sister-in-law Louise (pictured above) was because if I asked her which way to turn one more time I think she was going to let me head in the wrong direction alone. I seem to have lost the internal GPS that used to serve me so well and I was more than ready to let Eye Prefer Paris take over and be our guide.
The Marais quarter is unique because it so culturally diverse in its character and style, full of ethnic neighborhoods, small artisans, galleries, boutiques, 17th century mansions, private and public gardens, churches, synagogues, and a vibrant personality of old world and modern. I am not so sure I would have appreciated the Marais district fully without the insider peeks and personality provided by Richard and it was heaven to stroll and learn without referring to a. guide book b. map.
See the bubbles?
~ Louise and Richard ~
Our tour is just one of the many guided walking tours by Eye Prefer Paris. Though the Marais district is his "new hood", Richard can accommodate guided walking tours in whatever direction you wish to head in Paris. Just email him with your request. Even in another county. Eye Prefer Paris recently added New York Tours for clients visiting his "old hood". My local friend told me that the Paris cooking class which includes fresh market shopping, hands-on meal preparation in a professional kitchen, and a comfortable and delicious three-course lunch with wine was a highlight of their trip. The class takes place in the private townhouse of chef and instructor Charlotte Puckette and is located near the Eiffel Tower. Richard................sign me up for that one next time.
No compensation was received for this company review.
Photos by Sande Chase ~ A Gift Wrapped Life