If I were to go shopping on a grand scale, or window shopping (in French, the term is “leche-vitrines” – licking the windows) Bon Marche is the place to go, I was advised. It has more warmth and “chic” than others.
It is a grand, very elegant, department store. Emile Zola based a book on it to record the growth of consumerism among Parisian women, particularly, as there’s no doubt that they are, or at least were, the target market – as shown in these posters:
The first photo I took was of a statue on the ground floor. It seemed to be echoing my own thoughts: “Get me out of here!”
I had to admit it was spectacular.
With greenery and a lantern roof:
Some startled birds were in a corner.
I was much more comfortable when I found the books and stationery section. These two looked pretty happy too:
Nobody, except me, looked twice to see a dog in the store.
There were life-size sheep too:
The July sale was in full swing.
I went along a block to the delicatessen and homewares part of Bon Marche, in a building just as huge as the first and similarly modelled on the covered market that it once was.
The wine section was at the lower level:
There was everything you might need to make cocktails:
Or to pamper your pet:
Interesting, beautiful and a little exhausting!