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Oui Paris

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When the 2020 Toastmasters International Convention heads to Paris, France, on August 5–8, Toastmasters have the opportunity to be inspired by professionals and speech contestants, to network with old and new friends, and to advance personally and professionally. But Paris itself offers visitors a variety of enticements outside of the convention center. Museums, architecture, food, and shopping usually top people’s lists. If you’re someone whose eyes light up at the thought of shopping, or if you love to gaze at windows and dream, we’ve rounded up some suggestions to put on your list.

For luxury shopping, head to the Rue Saint-Honoré or the Champs-Elysées. There you’ll find the flagship stores for designers such as Chanel, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Versace, and Hermès, as well as famed art galleries.

Paris boasts three large, well-known department stores (“grand magasins”), which are as much about the experience as the shopping. The Galeries Lafayette and Printemps are on Boulevard Haussmann. Le Bon Marché is Paris’s oldest department store and was built by Gustave Eiffel in 1852.

For antiques, head to Place des Vosages and Rue Saint-Andrew des Arts where you’ll find regional specialties, unique gifts, and vintage clothing.

If you love to hunt for treasure, you won’t have to search for long at a French flea market. The Saint-Ouen flea market (Les Puces de Saint Ouen) is the largest antiques market and secondhand shop in the world. It’s held Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays. The Marche aux Puces de la Porte de Vanves is located in the center of Paris and is open every Saturday and Sunday.

People who love to wander in small shops in quaint neighborhoods should head to Rue du Commerce (near the Eiffel Tower) and the Marais neighborhood.

Finally, Paris is home to one of the most famous bookstores in the world. Located on the Left Bank, Shakespeare and Company is known for its rare finds and eclectic atmosphere.

Convention registration is open now! Early-bird registration ends May 31, 2020. Head to the Toastmasters convention webpage for more information.

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