Five Hip Parisian Bars in the Upper Marais

Five great places for a drink in the Les Halles, Montorgueil, and Arts et Métiers neighborhood recommended by our friend Margie!

Margie manages the vacation planning service Paris Your Way, and owns our Marais Rooftops apartment.

Parisians are fiercely proud of their quartiers, most believing that theirs is indeed the best place to live in the city. After 10 years in my own special part of Paris’ Right Bank, I’m finding fewer and fewer reasons to “cross the river.” Yes, Saint Germain is renowned for its shopping and the Latin Quarter for its medieval atmosphere … but we’ve got all that in the Haut Marais with perhaps fewer crowds.

Many believe the city’s center of creativity has shifted to the Right Bank, be it art, design, music, food or even beer-crafting. There’s a perceptible buzz in my Arts et Métiers/Montorgueil/Les Halles section of the city, where new branché spots seem to be opening almost weekly. If you’re going to one of our buzzy new restaurants, here are 5 great options for a pre- or post-dinner drink.

AG les Halles, a new and trendy restaurant in Les Halles Neighborhood in Paris.

  AG Les Halles

With the massive renovations to the Les Halles shopping center nearing completion, dozens of “happening” new places have opened in the neighborhood. This terrific new restaurant and bar is one of them, occupying a former disco that’s a classified monument. The front room, with its armchairs and banquettes is a perfect spot for a drink, separated from the main dining room by a glass-fronted wine case. Or sit at the beautiful long bar to enjoy your glass of wine and tapas. Peek into the dining room for a glimpse of the lovely glass ceiling (an original feature), with Cubist-inspired painting on the glass. The place is chic but not stuffy. At 14, rue Mondétour, 75001 Paris

An elegant piano bar in the hip Montorgueil neighborhood, with beautiful décor and nightly music

Club Rayé

An elegant piano bar in the hip Montorgueil neighborhood, with beautiful décor and nightly music in what was a 13th century nunnery. Black and white stripes (rayé in French) are everywhere, in the furniture and custom-made accessories. Sit in one of the comfy lounge chairs and enjoy the music along with terrific cocktails and a big menu of small plates. There’s live music downstairs in the cave’s Kafka Kabaret, and a DJ spinning on the main floor. No cover charge. Tell Kein, the owner, that Margie sent you and he’ll greet you with a complimentary glass of champagne. At 26, rue Dussoubs, 75002 Paris

The gorgeous ground floor bar is where to stop for a truly creative and original cocktail. Keep watch for notables as you sip your drinks.

Les Bains

This discrete, elegant boutique hotel opened last year in an 1885 building that began life as a luxury bathhouse and spa, then morphed into a legendary nightclub in the 1970’s. The gorgeous ground floor bar is where to stop for a truly creative and original cocktail. Keep watch for notables as you sip your drinks. At 7, rue du Bourg-l’Abbé, 75003 Paris.

Derrière

You’ll find this well-hidden spot by entering through an unmarked passageway from the narrow street. Now you’re in a lush courtyard, the perfect setting for drinks in a hip young atmosphere. Leading off the courtyard is one of the most eccentric restaurants you’ll ever encounter – a multistoried apartment furnished in shabby-chic, where you can dine in the living room or in any of the apartment’s other rooms. At 69, rue des Gravilliers, 75003 Paris.

The Hip Derriere Bar and Restaurant

Portologia

This cozy wine bar on an ancient street specializes in Port wines, which are very popular in France. On offer are all four varieties of port (white, pink, tawny and ruby), with more than 200 wines from which to choose. Do a tasting, or order by the glass. There’s a deli counter as well, where you can put together a plate of Portuguese charcuterie and cheese to go with your port. The décor is rustic and the welcome is warm. At 42, rue Chapon, 75003 Paris.

portologia

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 Five Hip Parisian Bars in the Upper Marais

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