In 1997, Paris’ fashion set thronged to a trendy new store in the first arrondissement. Colette pioneered a new direction in retail, as a multi-brand, multi-category store that stocked luxury prêt-à-porter alongside cult cosmetics, offbeat candy, Japanese stationery, jewelry, gadgets, art books and magazines.
Back in 2005, Forbes called Colette “the trendiest store in the world.” And for two decades, it was a must-visit address for fashionable locals and tourists. But the boutique closed its doors permanently in December 2017.
Where should chic shoppers head now that the Parisian temple of cool is no more? Here are five other stores we love that may fill the hole.
The Broken Arm
In the east of Paris, near the Republique metro station, The Broken Arm has offered a beautiful blend of homeware and fashion since 2013. The store’s three founders first got together to create an online magazine, and the concept spun out to opening a brick-and-mortar shop.
The stylish spot stocks around 40 labels, from well-known luxe lines such as Balenciaga, Comme des Garçons and Raf Simons, to younger brands like Alyx and Kwaidan Editions.
There’s also a café next door with a suitably sophisticated menu. On our last visit, we saw Calabrian black pig charcuterie alongside a foie gras crouton with roasted endive.
Another store that began as an offshoot of a magazine, the Holiday boutique curates its own line of tees and sweatshirts, as well as an array of candles, shoes, jewelry and objets d’art, all inside a historic 16th-century building in the 16th arrondissement.
Look out for collaborations with up-and-coming designers here. Right now the shop has a line of floral pins created exclusively for Holiday by renowned jewelry designer Aurélie Bidermann.
Once you’ve finished exploring the fashion, try the food just a few doors away at Holiday Café, an all-day dining spot from the same team.
Longtime multi-brand concept store Merci stocks men and women’s fashion from luxury labels such as Masscob, Forte Forte, 6397 and Chloe Stora, as well as vintage selections and its own line.
The clothing assortment is displayed alongside homeware, linens, accessories, lighting and storage, all of it beautifully curated and displayed in a sizable space in the historic Marais district.
The location also boasts numerous eateries: the beautiful Used Book Café, which is crammed with old editions and ideal for grabbing a coffee; the Cinema Café, for tartines, charcuterie and salads; and the basement-level La Cantine Merci, which serves healthy lunches that skew vegetarian.
Another refined collection of multi-brand apparel can be found just a few streets away in the north Marais district. Tom Greyhound stocks Aalto, Jil Sander, Marni, 3.1 Phillip Lim and Stella McCartney for the dapper set alongside shoes, bags, wallets, candles and fragrances.
Some of the trendier options on offer include Undercover’s range of leather pollution masks — emblazoned with the words “Brainwashed Generation”— and Walk of Shame’s signature caps.
If you’re traveling to Seoul soon, be sure to visit the shop’s high-concept offshoot in the South Korean capital, at 10-3 Dosan-daero 45-gil, in Gangnam.
Up in the even cooler, slightly grittier ninth arrondissement is where you’ll find this stylish home décor store.
L’Atelier Singulier delivers a range of vases, mugs, lampshades, cushions, bags, jewelry and kitchenware created by French artisans and displays them in an airy industrial space that feels more like a gallery than a retail outlet.
The ethos behind the product line is “handmade, slow-made, well-made.” One favorite is a hand-stitched leather backgammon board created exclusively for the shop by Valentine Despointes.