Monday, August 20, 2012


L’Heure Bleue – 1 Rue Carbonnerie; 011-33-4-6766-4105;; cozy tearoom decorated in 19th Century, British drawing room style; also coffees and pastries.
La Muse Gourmette – Avenue Samuel de Champlain (Antigone, Sunday Farmers’ Market); 011-33-6-8403-1227; baked goods, including gluten free.

Black Sheep – 21 Boulevard Louis Blanc; 011-33-4-6758-0865;; airy ground floor bar with live music; extensive beer list.
Brasserie de l’Hotel de Ville – 80 Place Georges Freche; 011-33-4-6785-2296;; pleasant spot to eat or have drink while admiring new City Hall.
Papa Doble – 6 Rue du Petit Scel; 011-33-4-6755-6666;; stylish, underground bar; Hemmingway shrine; try Caribbean Julep or Tokyo Society.
La Robe Rouge – 3 Place St. Ravy; 011-33-9-5024-9189;; small modern space; candlelit wine bar.

Baudon de Mauny – 1 Rue de la Carbonnerie; 011-33-4-6702-2177;; housed in 18th Century town house with 5 rooms done in impeccable taste.
Courtyard Marriott – 105 Place Georges Freche; 011-33-4-9954-7400;; new, sleek, 123-rooms; next to new City Hall; heated outdoor pool; Mediterranean restaurant.
Jardin des Sens – 11 Avenue Saint-Lazare; 011-33-4-9958-3838;

L’Atelier Gourmand – 17 Avenue du Pont Juvenal; 011-33-4-9951-7523;; design emporium and gastronomic temple; modern menu; 3-course dinner is great deal; great desserts (e.g., warm liquid dark chocolate in highball, served with chilled white chocolate with raspberry jelly).
Les Bains – 6 Rue Richelieu; 011-33-4-6760-7087;; former 18th Century bathhouse; now classic brasserie nestled in warren of cozy rooms; focus on seafood.
Brasserie de l’Hotel de Ville – 80 Place Georges Freche; 011-33-4-6785-2296;; pleasant spot to eat or have drink while admiring new City Hall.
Jardin des Sens – 11 Avenue Saint-Lazare; 011-33-4-9958-3838;
La Morue – 23 Rue du Palais des Guilhem; 011-33-4-6752-8262; boathouse-chic, tiny restaurant; unfussy seafood; lots of cod.

Trams #3-4 – Moulares Station;; Christian Lacroix designed Tram Nos. 3 & 4; take number 3 to arrive next to Hotel de Ville (city hall).

En Traits Libres – 2 Rue du Bayle (L’Ecusson); 011-33-4-3411-3843;; underground comic shop; expect to run into Robert Crumb, who lives in area; t-shirts, etc.
Establissement Martin et Fils – 22 Boulevard Du Jeu De Paume or Avenue Samuel de Champlain (Antigone, Sunday Farmers’ Market); 011-33-8-9910-0017 or 011-33-6-1354-7378; dried meats.
L’Heure Bleue – 1 Rue Carbonnerie; 011-33-4-6766-4105;; cozy tearoom decorated in 19th Century, British drawing room style; knick-knacks
Metropolitan – 30 Rue Foch (L’Ecusson); 011-33-4-6767-1870;; art gallery and home decor shop.
No Comment – 47 Rue de l’Aiguillerie (L’Ecusson); 011-33-4-6760-8591; leather designer Marc Jaillot’s shop.
Pierre Vives Building – 907 Rue du Professeur Blayac; 011-33-4-6767-3000;; opening to public (shared spaces, such as balcony, gallery, and lobby), Tuesday-Saturday from 10-19; designed by Zaha Hadid; called City (or Tree) of Knowledge and sport; as name suggests, multicultural city; contains city archives and library, fitness center, exhibition gallery, and amphitheater.
RBC Design Center – 609 Avenue Raymond Dugrand; 011-33-4-676-0750;; designed by Jean Nouvel and Francois Fontes; coolly modernist structure; houses furniture showroom.

Cite Internationale de la Danse (Agora) – 18 Rue Sainte Ursule; 011-33-4-6760-8360;; modern dance company housed in former 1641 convent.
L’Ecusson – Montpellier’s historical core; among France’s largest pedestrian zones; twisting Baroque, Medieval, 19th Century, and Renaissance passages.
Hotel de Ville de Montpellier – 1 Place Georges Freche; 011-33-4-6734-7000;; blue, cube-like Jean Nouvel modernist structure.
Marche Paysan Antigone – Avenue Samuel de Champlain (Antigone);; farmers’ market open Sunday mornings.
Musee Fabre – 39 Boulevard Bonne-Nouvelle; 011-33-4-6714-8300;; from Dutch masters to abstract.
Opera House – Place de la Comedie; 011-33-4-6760-1999;
Parc Marianne – between historic city and Millennium Business centers;; 20-acre park with extensive bike paths and pedestrian routes.
Pierre Vives Building – Paillade, Malbosc, and Alco junction;; by architect Zaha Hadid; long, sprawling structure of swirly white concrete layers and green-tinted glass; will hold archives, library, and municipal offices.
RBC Design Center – 609 avenue Raymond Dugrand 34000 Montpellier Contact : TRISTAN Tel. +33(0)4 67 024 024;; architect Jean Nouvel’s 9-story building (includes bookstore, exhibition space, and showroom); features museum-like interior divided vertically by central “canyon”; setup unfolds (in absence of solid walls) behind metallic mesh.


(Includes Firminy)

Terre Adelice – 1 Place de la Baleine; 011-33-4-7803-5184;; artisanal ice creams.

L’Antiquaire – 20 Rue Hippolyte Flandrin; 011-33-6-3421-5465;; American jazz bar; bow-tied bartenders serve seasonal cocktails.
Ayers Rock Boat – 17 Quai Victor Augagneur; 011-33-4-7284-9890;
Docks – 40 Quai Rambaud; 011-33-4-7840-4040;; industrial chic lounge-restaurant that turns into nightclub around midnight.
Rue Le Bec – 43 Quai Rambaud; 011-33-4-7892-8787;; sprawling restaurant and wine bar in gentrifying dock area.
Soda – 7 Rue de la Martiniere; 011-33-4-7839-0666;; dark, plush den; cocktails.

All Seasons Part Dieu – 54 Rue de la Villette; 011-33-4-7268-2540;; 99 non-smoking rooms, bar and brasserie.
Cour de Loges – 2-8 Rue du Bœuf; 011-33-04-7277-4444;
DockOuest – 39 Rue des Docks; 011-33-4-7822-3434;; design hotel with 43 rooms; suites outfitted by Ligne Roset; “concocted” by Paul Bocuse.
Hotel du Simplon – 11 Rue Duhamel; 011-33-4-7837-4100;; cozy, clean, and cute; 2 stars; 1 block from train station, in historic city center; breakfast included.

Do Mo – 45 Quai Rambaud; 011-33-4-3723-0923;; industrial space with light-bulbs shaped like water droplets; French-Japanese menu; tables with mini-grills allow diners to cook meal.
Docks – 40 Quai Rambaud; 011-33-4-7840-4040;; industrial chic lounge-restaurant that turns into nightclub around midnight.
La Famille – 18 Rue Duviard (Croix-Rousse); 011-33-4-7298-8390;; have to take train out to this suburb, now home to many trendy shops, etc.; this particular location, not so trendy; good food for reasonable price.
Au 14 Fevrier – 6 Rue Mourguet; 011-33-4-7892-9139;; tiny jewel-box restaurant; French-Japanese restaurant; Michelin star.
Magalie et Martin – 11 Rue des Augustins; 011-33-4-7200-8801;; must have reservations; run by Austrian-French couple; quietly stylish; rustic food.
Ouest Express – 41 Rue des Docks; 011-33-4-7217-9595;; Paul Bocuse; average food but excellent vichyssoise and deep-fried chicken nuggets.
Pain & Cie – 13 Rue Quatre Chapeaux; 011-33-4-7838-2984;; chain but very good.
La Passagere – 21 Quai Victor Augagneur; 011-33-4-7273-3698; boat cafe; good place for drink.
Le Petit Flore – 19 Rue du Garet; 011-33-4-7827-2751;; open since 1976; bouchon (place that serves offal-based fare); exudes simple honesty; do not have to eat offal.
Rue Le Bec – 43 Quai Rambaud; 011-33-4-7892-8787;; sprawling restaurant and wine bar in gentrifying dock area.
Restaurant Tetedoie – Montee du Chemin Neuf; 011-33-4-7829-4010;; futuristic establishment high above town on Fourviere Hill; slate floors, concrete walls, and floor-to-ceiling windows; Michelin-starred chef who has started this new enterprise.

Blue Mustach Shop – Passage Thiaffait, 19 Rue Rene Leynaud (La Croix Rousse); 011-33-6-8393-2928;; t-shirts.
Cote Desserts – Quai St.-Antoine & Quai des Celestins (Marche St.-Antoine); 011-33-4-7845-1945; excellent quince tarts.
Jouvray – Quai St.-Antoine & Quai des Celestins (Marche St.-Antoine); 011-33-4-7401-1685; cheeses.
Marche St.-Antoine – Quai St.-Antoine & Quai des Celestins; outdoor market.
Marechal – 102 Cours Lafayette; 011-33-4-7862-3677;; cheese stall; try St.-Marcellin.
Morgan Kirch – Passage Thiaffait, 19 Rue Rene Leynaud (La Croix Rousse); 011-33-6-2601-2558;; women’s wear.
Rue Le Bec – 43 Quai Rambaud; 011-33-4-7892-8787;; renovated warehouse complex that includes this laid-back, market-style location next to bakery and green grocer; perfect for takeout.

Cathedral of St.-Jean-Baptiste – 8 Place St.-Jean; 011-33-4-7854-7621;; check out gargoyles, etc.; interior contains towering astronomical clock.
Gare TGV Lyon Saint-Exupery – Colombier-Saugnieu; 011-33-4-7277-6969;; striking Calatrava architecture; worth seeing.
Les Halles – 102 Cours Lafayette;; across Rhone River, in Part-Dieu; modern city center; food marketplace.
Institut Lumiere – 25 Rue du Premier Film; 011-33-4-7878-1895;; Lumiere Brothers’ Art Nouveau mansion now museum that shows their original films; next door, their former factory is theater that shows international film classics.
Musee d’Art Contemporain de Lyon – 81 Quai Charles de Gaulle (Cite Internationale); 011-33-4-7269-1717;; Art Deco building modified by Renzo Piano; top notch contemporary shows.
Musee de la Civilisation Gallo-Romaine – 17 Rue Cleberg; 011-33-4-7238-4930;
Parc de la Tete d’Or – 1 Boulevard du 11 Novembre 1918; 011-33-4-7282-3500;; located on Rhone River banks; ​​105 hectares with 7 entry gates; most notable gate is Door of Children of Rhone, which opens onto 16-hectare lake; vast lawns alternate with groves over century old; flower beds (roses and peonies); among France’s largest and most beautiful urban parks; Rose Garden Internationale de Lyon covers 40K square meters and has 30K roses (350 varieties); also 2 other rose gardens (Rose Garden of Botanical Garden, which traces rose history, and rose garden that supports International Competition of New Roses; park encompasses more than 8.8K trees (Cedars of Lebanon, tulip trees, gingko biloba, bald cypress); by 1857, Botanical Garden of Lyon (created in 1796 on Croix-Rousse slopes) transferred to Parc de la Tete d’Or; largest botanical garden in municipal France; 8 hectares of which 6.5K square meters of greenhouses.
Quai de la Pecherie – known for old and rare booksellers, as well as postcards, records, etc.
RBC Lyon – 42 Quai Rambaud; 011-33-4-7204-2525; rbcmobilier; 10K square foot showroom for modern furniture; architecturally fascinating structure (large orange cube with apparent bite taken from it).
Rhone Rive Gauche – from Gerland district to Parc de la Tete d’Or; or; start at reflecting pools on Quai Claude Bernard and head north; along Quai Victor Augagneur, check posters for floating nightclubs; beyond Pont Wilson, boat-café, La Passagere, is cozy spot for hot chocolate; from there, walk to Parc de la Tete d’Or.
Saint-Pierre Church – Place du Mail, 1, Rue des Noyers (Firminy);; Le Corbusier and José Oubrerie were unusual collaborators on Eglise St.-Pierre de Firminy, whose design took 43 years to complete in Loire Valley.
Village des Createurs – Passage Thiaffait, 19 Rue Rene Leynaud (La Croix Rousse); 011-33-4-7827-3721;; alley of local design boutiques.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


Sights & Sites
Songor Lagoon – Dangbe East;; UNESCO Biosphere Preserve; 29K hectares; intensive research is focused on sea turtles that nest in area; manatees also inhabit waters; lagoon additionally acts as important waypoint for European migratory birds that winter in Ghana; site known to exceed bird population of 100K in European winter, with migratory terns, sandpipers, stilts, plovers, and other waterfowl adding to local population; 2 bird watching platforms, one in Pute and one in Lolanya (varieties such as sandwich, black, royal, roseate, and little terns, black-winged stilts, ringed plovers, curlew sandpipers, spotted redshanks, and greenshanks); best months to see turtles are August-March (walks conducted at night, between 23:00 and 2:00, when sea turtles likely to nest on beach); also noteworthy is Crocodile Island, where little egrets, western reef herons, and cormorants are known to breed; island also acclaimed for its basket-weaving industry.

Sunday, August 12, 2012


(includes Anna Maria Island, Clearwater, Holmes Beach, St. Pete Beach, Tarpon Springs & Ybor City)

Ginny’s & Jane E’s – 9807 Gulf Drive (Anna Maria Island); 941-778-8203; café and bakery.
Kahwa Espresso Bar – 475 2nd Street North (St. Petersburg); 727-823-4700;; French café with bright, minimalist interior.
Kahwa Cafe – 204 2nd Avenue South (St. Petersburg); 727-821-1942;
Pane Rustica – 3225 South MacDill Avenue (Tampa); 813-902-8828;; breakfast pastries.
Sophie’s French Bakery & Cafe – 1633 West Snow Avenue (Tampa); 813-254-5257;; great for breakfast pastry and coffee.

Feeling Swell – 9903 Gulf Drive (Anna Maria Island); 941-896-7879;
Hurricane – 807 Gulf Way (St. Pete Beach); 727-360-9558;; have cocktail on roof and watch sun go down.
Independent – 29 3rd Street North (St. Petersburg); 727-820-9514;; candlelit beerhall with retractable glass façade.

Veteran’s Reef – shipwreck trio that serves as goliath grouper breeding ground.

Ponce de Leon Boutique Hotel – 95 Central Avenue (St. Petersburg); 727-550-9300;
Post Card Inn on Beach – 6300 Gulf Boulevard; 727-367- 2711 or 800-237-8918;; renovated 1957 motor inn; chic and spare; right on beach; rooms closest to pool have private hammocks; 2 rooms have balconies (#s 362 and 364) that look toward beach; non-renovated bathrooms.

Beach Bistro – 6600 Gulf Drive (Holmes Beach); 941-778-6444;; swank-ish but you can wear flip-flops; try “White Castle” slider.
Bern’s Steak House – 1208 South Howard Avenue (Tampa); 813-251-2421;; down-at-heels, tacky, tatty, wonderful; regional favorite and standby since 1950s; legendary dessert array.
Brocato’s Sandwich Shop – 5021 East Columbus Drive (Tampa); 813-248-9977; open since 1948; devil crabs like geodes.
Ceviche Tapas Bar & Restaurant – 95 Central Avenue (St. Petersburg); 727-209-2299;; Spanish food.
Ceviche Tapas Bar & Restaurant – 1502 South Howard Avenue (Tampa); 813-250-0203;; Spanish food.
Ceviche Tapas Bar & Restaurant – 2930 Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard (Clearwater); 727-799-3082;; Spanish food.
Columbia Restaurant – 2117 East 7th Avenue (Tampa, Ybor City); 813-248-4961;; open since 1905; beautiful, old building with tile-work worth viewing in and of itself; try Paella a la Valenciana, Snapper Alicante, and/or Pompano en Papillot; also black bean soup and fried ripe plantains; must order flan (made Cuban-style with sweetened condensed milk).
Duffy’s Tavern – 5808 Marina Drive (Anna Maria Island); 941-778-2501;; hamburgers named among best in country in 1989; don’t ask for French fries and no credit cards or attitude.
Michelle Faedo’s Sandwich Shop – 3609 North 15th Street (Ybor City); 813-247-3020;; must order devil crabs; also has great Cuban sandwiches.
Mr. Empanada – 3953 West Kennedy Boulevard (Tampa); 813-872-6233;; crab empanadas.
Mr. Empanada – 4836 North Armenia Avenue (Tampa); 813-879-6232;; crab empanadas.
Mr. Empanada – 7541 West Hillsborough Avenue (Tampa); 813-249-6233;; crab empanadas.
Feeling Swell – 9903 Gulf Drive (Anna Maria Island); 941-896-7879;
Ginny’s & Jane E’s – 9807 Gulf Drive (Anna Maria Island); 941-778-8203; café and bakery.
Kahwa Cafe – 204 2nd Avenue South (St. Petersburg); 727-821-1942;
Neyda’s Buy & Fly Café – 540 South 50th Street; 813-248-8816; Jamaican beef patties, fried chicken gizzards, yucca fritters, and devil crabs; this is convenience store.
Pane Rustica – 3225 South MacDill Avenue (Tampa); 813-902-8828;; Italian bakery that also serves lunch and supper; also, late night desserts.
Paninoteca – 519 North Franklin Street (Tampa); 813-341-2525;; light Mediterranean fare.
Pipo’s Cafe – 11417 North Dale Mabry Highway; 813-963-7476;; Cuban food; try ropa vieja, black bean soup, and deviled crab.
Pipo’s Cafe – 411 South McDill Avenue; 813-871-5252;; Cuban food; try ropa vieja, black bean soup, and deviled crab.
Pipo’s Cafe – 3501 North Armenia Avenue; 813-876-7476;; Cuban food; try ropa vieja, black bean soup, and deviled crab.
Rod & Reel – 875 North Shore Drive (Anna Maria Island); 941-778-1885; 2-story restaurant, at end of pier; insider sunset spot and local knowledge about beaches.
Sandbar – 100 Spring Avenue (Anna Maria Island); 941-778-0444;; good fried seafood and outdoor seating.
Sign of Mermaid – 9707 Gulf Drive (Anna Maria Island); 941-778-9399;; in 1913 cottage; seafood and baked goods.
Skinny’s Place – 3901 Gulf Drive North (Anna Maria Island); 941-778-7769; burgers.
Sophie’s French Bakery & Cafe – 1633 West Snow Avenue (Tampa); 813-254-5257;; quiches, salads, and sandwiches.
Star Fish Co. – 12306 46th Avenue West (Anna Maria Island); 941-794-1243;; fish market and restaurant.
La Teresita – 3248 West Columbus Drive (Tampa); 813-879-9704;; Cuban-Spanish; open extra late for Cuban sandwiches.
West Tampa Sandwich Shop – 3904 North Armenia Avenue; 813-873-7104;; great roast pork and ham sandwiches; also, huge devil crabs.

Cacciatore & Sons – 3614 North Armenia Avenue; 813-872-7255;; specialty groceries.
Greiner’s – 117 East Whiting Street (Tampa); 813-226-3207;; men’s wear.
Inkwood Books – 216 South Armenia Avenue (Tampa); 813-253-2638;; independent bookseller.
Mesh – 689 Central Avenue (St. Petersburg);; high-end contemporary furnishings.
La Segunda Central Bakery – 2512 North 15th Street (Ybor City); 813-248-1531;; purchase palmetto-leaf-topped Cuban bread.
Sunshine Thrift Store – 4304 South Dale Mabry Highway (Tampa); 813-831-4377;; vintage wear.

Florida Museum of Photographic Arts – 200-400 North Ashley Drive (Tampa); 813-221-2222;; occupies 2nd & 3rd floors architecturally significant Cube adjacent to Rivergate Tower in downtown.
Fred Howard Park – 1700 Sunset Drive (Tarpon Springs); 727-943-4081;; 155 acres on Gulf; mile-long causeway links main park area with white, sandy beach; worth special trip.
Lettuce Lake Park – 6920 East Fletcher Avenue (Tampa); 813-987-6204;; just outside city limits between I-75 and University of South Florida; features several boardwalks that wind through various Florida ecosystems; fresh water wetland and flood plain, oak-dominated hardwood forest, cypress domes, and Hillsborough River; visitor’s center, observation tower, nature trails, picnic tables, barbecue pits, restrooms, open play field, and playground; wear mosquito repellant and do NOT pick up shells (bacteria issue).
Museum of Science & Industry – 4801 East Fowler Avenue (Tampa); 813-987-6000;
Henry B. Plant Museum – 401 West Kennedy Boulevard (Tampa); 813-254-1891;; south wing Plant Hall on University of Tampa campus; formerly Tampa Bay Hotel, 500+ room resort hotel opened in 1891 by Henry B. Plant near rail line terminus; exhibits focus on Tampa’s Gilded Age lifestyle; hosts annual Victorian Christmas Stroll.
River Walk – starts off Beneficial & Channelside Drives’ intersection and culminates off Cass Street (Tampa); 813-731-4508;; phased open space and pedestrian trail development along Hillsborough River; travels along Tampa Arts District and includes Curtis Hixon Park, Tampa Museum of Art, Glazer Children’s Museum, Rivergate Tower, and adjacent atrium containing Florida Museum of Photographic Arts; extends to Channelside District and is slated to connect up with part of Tampa Heights; long term goal is to complete continuous 2.4 mile path.
Salvador Dali Museum – 1 Dali Boulevard (St. Petersburg); 727-823-3767;
Studio@620 – 620 1st Avenue (St. Petersburg);; performance art as well as traditional art.
Tampa Museum of Art – 120 West Gasparilla Plaza (Tampa); 813-274-8130;; 20th Century fine art, as well as Etruscan, Greek, and Roman antiquities; on Tampa’s Riverwalk and Waterfront Arts District.
Tampa Theater – 711 North Franklin Street (Tampa); 813-274-8981;; renovated 1926 movie theater that still plays Wurlitzer organ before shows.
Waterfront Arts District – along River Walk (Tampa);