An Insider Guide to Paris with Ernest Leoty founder, Marion Rabate

An Insider Guide to Paris with Ernest Leoty founder, Marion Rabate

label Ernest Leoty – originally a 19th-century corset
designer – gets a refashioning from founding designer Marion

Dressed in corset-inspired activewear – think light, supple and
chic designs – we’re stretching it out ahead of a day of pavement
hitting in the City of Light with Ernest Leoty founder, Marion

With no set plan – everyone is a flâneur here, non? – we take
comfort in the knowledge that our coordinating Ernest Leoty sets
will take us seamlessly from barre class to le actual bar.

Marion Rabate’s Insider Guide to Paris

The best day of the week to arrive in Paris is…

I would say a weekday for sure… perhaps a Thursday.

What’s the city’s dress code?

Smart, casual, simple lines, elegant and high quality.

Where’s the best place to wake up?

The Hoxton Paris or Le Pigalle Paris. I love the
vibe at Le Pigalle – its lobby is a great place to hang out.

Coolest neighbourhoods worth exploring…

The classics,
Le Marais
and Saint-Germain-des-Près, but it’s also worth going
off the tourist track, venturing to bars and restaurants in the
ninth for example, which is now my favourite area in Paris.

Most beautiful place to spend a Sunday?

Spend the day at the Fondation Louis Vuitton or go out of town to

What’s the best way to explore the city?

Walking definitely, the city is not as big as London
and you can take the bus if you need to.

Where can we work out?

My favourites are Dynamo for cardio (a spin class),
Reformation Pilates and Le Tigre
Yoga Club & Spa.

For a healthy brunch in Le Marais try…

Season, an amazing health-concept foodstore. I also
love Wild & the Moon and Café

Where should we go for a low-key lunch?

Le Richer; it’s super casual but serves excellent
bistro-style food.

And for a romantic dinner?

It’s a bit cheesy but Chez Julien.

Other food spots we should try…

Frenchie, Septime, Café Philippe and Nanashi on Rue

The best place to treat yourself?

A Tata Harper massage at the Spa Le Bristol by La Prairie.

Your favourite Parisian stores include…

Le Bon Marché.

Where should we go for a big night out in Paris?

Rosa Bonheur for something casual or Silencio for a real club – although I don’t really go
out much anymore.

Where should we head post-party?

Your best friend’s house for an out-of-hours afterparty.

One misconception about Paris is…

That people and waiters are rude and service levels are poor.
This was ages ago, now standards have changed.

For some culture, head to…

Fondation Louis Vuitton, Musée
, Musée Bourdelle and Musée de la Vie Romantique.

Describe your quintessential Parisian afternoon…

Coffee at Café Philippe or Season, then a stroll in Le Marais.
After stopping at The Broken Arm boutique go to a
class at Reformation Pilates. Then, meet some friends for early
drinks on the terrace of Le Perchoir.

A book to read before we go?

Mathilde Lacombe’s book Une Question d’Équilibre [A Question of
Balance]; it explores how French women balance life and work.
Another book – my favourite growing up – Au Bonheur des Dames [The
Ladies’ Paradise] by Émile Zola, retraces the rise of department
stores in 19th-century Paris.

Underrated spots worthy of a visit…

Musée des Arts Décoratifs
; Jardin des Tuileries; Parc des
Buttes Chaumont; Boulevard Barbès.

What one thing should we bring back as a souvenir?

Food! I always go to La Maison Plisson before I take the Eurostar and bring
back charcuterie, cheese, wine and other items. They present them
beautifully and they make for great gifts.

A great out-of-town spot is…

I like going to Deauville; it’s next to the sea, and quite close
to Paris. Otherwise a nice place to go for lunch is the Trianon Palace in Versailles,
where I used to live.

And finally, what’s in your SUITCASE for a trip to Paris?

My Leoty Bertille trousers (our knitwear is made in the same
factory as Hermès), the corset leggings in black (very chic and can
be worn with anything), a leather jacket and a white shirt.

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