As I sat down to start writing about our four-week European adventure, I found it hard to find the words to express just how extraordinary it was. It’s taken me a little while to put together, but I’m stoked to be finally sharing with you part one.
It all started on the 15th of December 2016 when Emirates picked us up at our doorstep. We were both grinning ear to ear excited about the first class experience that awaited us. Let me tell you, that grin and feeling of joy only got bigger and bigger as the trip went on.
I can clearly remember the moment when we first walked into the first class cabin and there was no one in sight (we were the only two passengers from Australia to Dubai), except the beautiful Emirates team that were waiting with a bottle of Dom Pérignon.
I’m not going to lie. That was the easiest flight to Europe we’ve ever experienced. I actually wanted a longer stopover in Dubai so I could hang out in the first class lounge longer. It was huge. The lounge took up a whole floor of the Dubai airport, and it had a free day spa.
Holy shit. What an epic experience.
Here are some of our favourite highlights:
- Unlimited glasses of Dom Pé
- Showering at 40,000ft.
- Bulgari amenity kits & the fancy pyjamas that have this special technology that keep your skin hydrated. So dope.
- Having our own private suite each with a mini bar, flat bed with a mattress, a vanity and the list goes on.
- The food was legit amazing. I’m officially a caviar fan.
- The lounge and bar on the A380.
- And watching the joy on my husband’s face. Priceless.
We couldn’t be more grateful to start our journey flying First Class with Emirates. The experience was beyond our wildest expectations.
2016 was all about feeling alive and present, and this wild adventure certainly delivered those feelings. We felt the purest form of joy and happiness in those moments together, a memory we will cherish forever and roll our eyes at when we are old and grey most likely.
For those wandering how we flew first class, no we didn’t win the lotto and no we didn’t receive a free upgrade. We accumulate a lot of frequent flyer points every year which we purchase almost all our flights with. We couldn’t find business class seats that matched our itinerary flying over, and we had enough points, so we said fuck it, why not! You only live once right 😉
HOME FOR A WEEK
It was our fourth time back in Paris, and this time we decided to stay in Le Marais. Without a doubt my favourite part of Paris. It exudes an old and romantic charm, with art galleries on almost every corner, some of my favourite restaurants, boutiques that will send you broke, and the cutest little book stores.
We loved the apartment we stayed in, and I would highly recommend it for its location and practicality. Not only did it have a cliche Parisian window, the loft bed created a huge space for us to work from below. Plus the essentials; kitchen, washing machine, bathroom and lounge.
Our office was still open for the week we were in Paris, so every morning we would sit by the window of our apartment drinking our espresso and working till noon.
Let’s be real, food is one of the highlights of travel.
Les Philosophes: One of the best French onion soups I’ve ever had.
28 Rue Vieille du Temple, Le Marais
Le Colimaçon Marais: Go for an intimate French dinner.
44 Rue Vieille du Temple, Le Marais
L’As du Fallafel: Go if you’re keen to line up for a killer Fallafel.
34 Rue des Rosiers, Le Marais
Ob-La-Di: Go for the coffee, the decor and if you’re missing avocado for breaky.
54 Rue de Saintonge, Le Marais
La Paulette: We had a memorable lunch here. The food was delicious.
10 Rue de Bretagne, Le Marais
Grazie: Who doesn’t love Italian. Seriously, go for the pizza.
91 Boulevard Beaumarchais, Le Marais
Ober Mamma: WOW. The decor is beautiful, and the food is insane. Prob my fav meal in Paris.
107 Boulevard Richard Lenoir, Folie-Mericourt
Le Train Bleu: We went back in 2014 for our Christmas Lunch. It’s absolutely beautiful. Pricey, but worth it.
Paris Gare de Lyon, Place Louis-Armand
Les Ombres: Fine dining with a view of the Eiffel Tower. I’d highly recommend this to anyone looking for a special night out.
27 Quai Branly, Invalides
HOW WE SPENT OUR DAYS
The vibe was different compared to the last few times we’ve been to Paris. You could feel the impact these heartbreaking attacks have had. Before we move on to how we spent our days, I just want to share that we’re on this beautiful planet together, and now more than ever we need to turn up the love.
+ We visited some art galleries in the Le Marais area.
+ Got boozy on a food and wine tour by Secret Food Tours. Love wine and cheese? This is for you.
+ Wandered the streets of Montmartre. It’s magical up there.
+ Contemplated buying art at Carré d’artistes.
+ Spent a lot of time in the Shakespeare and Co book store. Mr Downting got a little bit impatient with me in there.
We skipped most of the traditional tourist activities, and spent our days wandering aimlessly admiring the streets of Paris.
When we left Paris, we traveled to a beautiful place called Strasbourg for Christmas. I’m really looking forward to sharing part two with you all.
Love, Danika. xx
Feature Image: John Towne