Paris Update: Is the Marais Still Gay? Oui et Non … Read on!

21 03 2018
What happened to the Gay Marais in Paris?

Has the charming Gay Marais gone? If your last visit to Paris goes back to the mid-’80s or the ’90s, Is the Marais still gay? Read all about it in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazinechances are you may not recognize the neighborhood. The days of first ever created gay-bars like Le-Village and L’Amnésia seem really far.

Things have changed but to understand what’s really happening now we may need to board the time-machine.

A little history

Le-Marais (marsh, swamp in English) goes back to the Middle-Age and was developed right after the Renaissance when the rich and famous started to build elegant mansions also known as “Hôtels-particuliers” to remain rather close to the king’s palace, The Louvre. When the Court moved to Versailles, the area started to lose its wealthy patrons. In the 19th century the rich inhabitants moved further West and the old Marais started to host a new population: the many Jews who had escaped cruel persecutions, frequent in the ancient Russian empire.

Gay Marais in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazineAfter WW2 Le Marais was sentenced to death, in other words: to be demolished. Too old and the bearer of tragic war memories. Thanks to a clever minister of cultural affairs, it survived the bulldozers but wont see its renaissance until the arrival of the gay community in the early 80s following the first solid renovations of historic mansions and inauguration of the Pompidou Center which will bring international light to the older part of the capital city. As often with the gay community, the street started to become prettier, flower pots popped-up in front of design stores and friendly cafés and restaurants.

The best years indeed!

Le-Marais was back, it was fashionable – luxury brands could not miss this opportunity and over the past 5 years we have seen high-end stores coming-in, replacing traditional and convenient businesses. L’Amnésia closed and so did many other gayGay Marais in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazine “institutions” often replaced by luxury boutiques. Rue des Archives a whole series of top boutiques have been created by a single investor. The facades all look alike and are truly magnificent but the Givenchy, Prada, Moncler boutiques seem a bit lost and too often quite empty. They are not terribly inviting as a security guy stands right at the door and this is never a way to say “bienvenue!”. Cox, Open-Café, Raid, Free DJ are still here to welcome their gay patrons.

Plus ça change

Change everything so nothing changes (The Leopard, Visconti): in reality Le-Marais has never so Gay Marais in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazinebeautiful and charming. All restaurants, cafés, wine-bars, bakeries, boutiques, art galleries – not to forget the legendary department BHV, totally revamped, all are truly gay-friendly and all know what they owe to the Gay Community. We only hope this mind set will remain but further closure would not help and may simply sign the end of Le Gay-Maris!

In the meantime, it’s never been a better time to visit. So don’t wait!

One fantastic resource for the Marais is Created by Pascal Fonquernie, the site — which is available in seven languages — is among the world’s most visited guides on le Marais, including a large gay community section. Not a gay guide, it’s the best of le Marais, including booking hotels; information about the Jewish quarter; recommended tour guides; restaurants; history; and interviews with famous people. Download a copy of the Marais map here.

Story by ManAboutWorld Global Correspondent, Jean-Pierre Soutric, Paris, 18-March 2018, 

From The Vineyard to La Ville Lumière

5 03 2015
As seen in ManAboutWorld, the gay travel magazine

An outdoor food market in the heart of Paris

Gary Saperstein goes by a few monikers these days: wine expert, radio show host, Sonoma man-about-town, and founder of Out In The Vineyard, to name a few. To us, he’s friend and correspondent, and he recently spent a few days touring around Paris with a dear friend, the head chef at Sonoma’s famous The Girl and the Fig.

As seen in ManAboutWorld, the gay travel magazine

Paris by day, and its unmistakable landmark


Round The World With Paul And Jose: Gay Paris Update

2 07 2013


ManAboutWorld Global Correspondent Paul Teixeira and his partner Jose are in the midst of an 87-day global gay adventure. He agreed to document his trip here with highlights from many destinations around the world. In his own words:

We recently spent six fabulous nights in Paris as part of our 87 day round-the-world trip, and thanks to the exclusive ManAboutWorld Paris guide, we had the inside track knowledge which made it that much easier to have an amazing time.

We must post about some additional nightlife discoveries to add to your choices. We found the newer club FREEDJ to be our favorite for most any night. They have hot friendly bartenders and a great looking clientele, both locals and visitors. On Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, they open their downstairs brick arched underground dance club to get down with some of the best current pop remixes. Sunday is their creative church themed “MESS” party with glow rings and glow rosaries, candy communion like wafers, bartenders in custom shirts and costumes, and a nun dressed DJ. This party goes until 3AM, and if you still have it in you, the staff and friends may take you to the locals after party at L’Enchanteur. You’ll get to go until 7AM at this Dance/Karaoke bar and party with most of the locals and staff at the bars in the area.

Get yourself to Paris and enjoy some of the best and varied gay nightlife in Europe!

April In Paris. Oui. That’s What I’m Talking About

9 04 2013

The weather in the Northeast has been spectacular. Imagine a beautiful day like that as you stroll around the heart of historic, romantic Paris with your partner? Or explore museums, hit the clubs or kick back at a cool lounge with your bestie numéro un?

Why imagine? Download this month’s issue and (re)discover the City of Light like you’ve never seen it before. Our team has all visited their recently and lived there in the not too distant past. We know and love Gai Paree and you’ll feel that as you read our family of articles on this city we adore.

April In Paris With ManAboutWorld

2 04 2013
Maybe you'll meet this gendarme!

Maybe you’ll meet this gendarme!

April in Paris conjures up romantic images of you and a special someone strolling along the Seine, warm croissants in hand.

Make it happen with ManAboutWorld’s latest issue with lots of up-to-the-minute coverage of the City of Light. If you subscribe already, download April with the app. If you don’t subscribe, download the issue in the AppStore here.


Paris Is In The House

1 04 2013
The cover looks so much cooler in the magazine.

The cover looks so much cooler in the magazine.

Paris is in the house!

Our April issue is ready to be downloaded. Here’s a screenshot of the cover but you have to see the animated version in the magazine.

If you already subscribe, just download it from within the magazine app. If you don’t subscribe (est-ce possible?!), click here to get a complimentary 3-month subscription:

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