We have all experienced the dilemma of trying to find a clean public rest room when we have to go.
Paris surprisingly has many public toilets that are clean and reliable. My impetus for this post came from a tip I received a few months ago about some new state of the art toilets in the Carrousel de Louvre, a shopping mall underneath the Louvre. What I discovered was actually a bathroom boutique with designer public toilets called Point WC. I walked in and found a clever wall display of multi-colored toilet papers laid out like paint chips along with a selection of extravagant and humorous toilet seat covers, and well designed bathroom accessories. There is a front desk with the price list of the bathroom cabins you can use and there was either the standard cabin for 1.50 euros or the Japanese high tech one for 2 euros. I chose the Japanese one to see what was so special. I was shown to the cabin by a young attendant in a spiffy uniform. The cabin was quite smartly designed with a warm wood cabinet with incense sticks in a clear vase on top, a bonsai tree, a fabulous round black sink, and last but not least, an immaculate white toilet. There was also a remote with many buttons and a sign with a list of over 20 functions the toilet performed. I was too impatient to decipher all of this so I took the remote and started pressing all the buttons. After pressing them numerous times without anything happening I took it to the front desk. They said the remote was broken and gave me a one euro refund. I went back to the cabin and did my business perfectly well sans the remote. I have to say it was an enjoyable experience and well worth the price for peace of mind and clean facilities. I found out they also have a location on the Champs Elysees.
Believe it or not the restrooms in the metro stations are very well kept and safe. There is an attendant, so again it's customary to leave a tip. The drawback is that most metro stations don't have restrooms and the few that do are not always open. I know for sure the one in the Hotel de Ville station is open during the day.
The last public alternative, although not always necessarily clean, are the newly revamped free toilet kiosks on the streets. They've installed 400 of them all over the city and are designed by the big deal,chic chi french designer Patrick Jouin. The stations are big enough now to fit wheelchairs, more environmentally correct (rain water is used and saves consumption about 30%), easier to use with instructions in several languages, and have a water fountain on the outside.
Carrousel de Louvre,
99 rue de Rivoli, 1st. arr.
Metro: Palais Royal/Musee de Louvre
26 Ave. Champs Elysees, 8th arr.
Metro: Franklin Roosevelt
Place de la Madeleine, 8th arr.
New! Eye Prefer Paris Cooking Classes
I am happy to announce the launch of Eye Prefer Paris Cooking Classes. Come take an ethnic culinary journey with me and chef and caterer Charlotte Puckette, author of the bestseller The Ethnic Paris Cookbook. First we will shop at a Paris green-market for the freshest ingredients and then return to Charlotte’s professional kitchen near the Eiffel Tower to cook a three-course lunch. After, we will indulge in the delicious feast we prepared along with hand-selected wines.
Cost: 185 euros per person (about $240)
Time: 9:30AM- 2PM (approximately 4 1/2 hours)
Location: We will meet by a metro station close to the market
Class days: Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday
Minimum of 3 students, maximum 6 students.
Click here to sign up for the next class or for more info.
I am pleased as punch to announce the launch of Eye Prefer Paris Tours, which are 3-hour walking tours I will personally be leading. The Eye Prefer Paris Tour includes many of the places I have written about such as small museums & galleries, restaurants, cafes & food markets, secret addresses, fashion & home boutiques, parks, and much more.
I look forward to meeting you on my tours and it will be my pleasure and delight to show you my insiders Paris.
Check it out at www.eyepreferparistours.com