May 23, 2014

Paris Part 5: The Eiffel Tower!

#tbt to this photo from this previous post

This was the day! After some more church-touring in the morning, we made our way to the majestic majesty overlooking the entire city. La Tour Eiffel is just as beautiful and gorgeous in person as she appears in pictures. 
Sur la Tour Eiffel

This was the place my family's compulsive planning really came in handy. I strongly suggest getting your tickets waaay in advance of when you plan to visit because A) The ticket sales vary in price and availability the closer you get to your date and B) You do not want to stand in the longest. line. I've. ever. seen. to buy tickets/get a chance to ride up. Also, it's completely freezing even in April. Seriously, I was wearing gloves the whole time: it was that cold. 
In one of the elevators on our initial ascent to the 2nd level: the first is restaurants and a clear bridge that is currently under construction

The views the Eiffel Tower affords are honestly one of a kind, you can see the entire layout of the city and the beautiful architectural styles that give you something new to look at with every blink

The Champ de Mars is the Central Park of Paris. It is a very long lawn in front of the Eiffel tower with lots of lounging room for the Parisians that like to picnic there (not to mention the tourists trying to lift the tower, ah iconic). Our apartment was one street away from the Champ de Mars and mother and I enjoyed very lovely strolls down the manicured lawns in the morning. (Our tour guide was right though, that is one ugly brown tower in the background)

You gotta respect the wind-blown hair the top of the tour afforded me

A Pixar-worthy sky

The even tinier Champ de Mars after we ascended to the 3rd and final level of the tower

If we thought it was freezing on the ground, we were in for a rude awakening as we made our way to the 3rd, and highest, level of the tower. It was freezing! But the views made it worth it. 

Once you reach this height, they are not taking any risks with your safety: there are bars and a big fence with plenty of camera-worthy gaps separating the viewing platform from the huge drop to the pavement below

A (slightly) better look at my outfit for the day, and yes, I'm wearing gloves and holding my mother's purse

The Seine was a gorgeous Mediterranean-like color, winding its way through the city

We weren't far from the top!

After we'd had enough of the freezing wind chill and breath-taking views, we made our way down to the pavement below the tower…just to head back up again for our lunch reservations. See, we had reservations at the very famous, very expensive Jules Verne restaurant that is actually in the tower. 

Jules Verne is a very fancy-dancy restaurant inside the tower. You enter through one private elevator at the Jules Verne tower, emerging hundreds of feet above the ground into an expansive dining space that is gorgeous

The food, however, was really the sight to see. It was an absolutely exquisite meal, I still well up thinking about it. The head chef of Le Jules Verne is the über-famous Alain Ducasse. (He's famous enough to have his own Wikipedia page)His dishes are masterpieces, good enough to hang in any museum in Paris. (Although it'd be a shame to waste the food like that, they were just as delicious as they were pretty)

My grandmother's appetizer, some sort of meat with vegetables and potatoes with cream

The menu gives you two to three choices of a set course meal. There were many duplications in our orders, but they were all delicious. (And shhh, don't tell Alain, but his champagne wasn't as good as the one we had at Paul Chêne)

The wonderful appetizer both my mother and I chose, lobster and caviar mixed with greens on a bed of mashed peas and lemon-y drops making the colorful border (gorgeous, non? And just as delicious as it is picturesque)

My grandmother's main course which was (I believe)…lamb? Or pork or something…

My main course; I don't know what it was but it was pure heaven on a plate

Throughout the entire meal we were quite aware that we were dining next to British aristocrats, Parisian politicians, foreign Prime Ministers, and rich Parisian ladies. #NoPressure

The dessert we ordered: a rhubarb trifle that was sour and sweet and oh so good

The desserts that are present on every table (we had two trays of these) during the tea/coffee service

Our little band of misfits dining with Kings

(Read Paris Part 6 here!)

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