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What’s on in Paris this January

17 December 2015

Attend Leading Events & Exhibitions During a Cultural Break at Hotel Balzac

The City of Light is internationally admired for its enviable events calendar and hosting an array of leading exhibitions throughout the year. This January, its picturesque streets will be full of fashionistas, each eager to see next season’s must-haves at both Men’s Fashion Week and Haute Couture, while its renowned museums will be boasting unique displays suited to a variety of ages and interests. With such a wide range of attractions, Paris is the ultimate destination for a cultural getaway in 2016.

Mythes Fondateurs, d’Hercule à Dark Vador Exhibition 


17th October 2015 – 4th July 2016

Those seeking a family-friendly arts experience during a stay in Paris should look no further than the ‘Founding Myths. From Hercules to Darth Vader’ exhibition within the Louvre’s Petite Galerie. The 240m² space opened in October and is entirely dedicated to education with displays designed to introduce children to the arts; facilitating their encounter using a variety of materials and additional information such as timelines. Its inaugural display explores the theme of myths, what they are and how they’ve been portrayed in different cultures around the world over the centuries. 

Approximately 70 pieces showcase how painters, sculptors, filmmakers and musicians have been influenced by and sought to represent different mythological figures; from heroes to monsters. Its four sections offer the chance to discover tales that seek to explain the creation of the world, how mythical creatures have been depicted by artists in different eras, and how we interpret myths in the modern day. Expect to see the likes of Darth Vader’s iconic mask alongside a 25,000 year old statuette of Venus of Tursac; a Japanese Kagura Mask from the beginning of the 20th century to a marble sculpture of ‘The Fall of Icarus’ by Paul-Ambrose Slodtz. With such a wealth of artworks and artefacts on display, as well as a fun-filled activity book, this exciting and informative exhibition will provide the perfect cultural day out for the whole family.

Les Robes Trésors de la Comtesse Exhibition 

Palais Galliéra 

7th November 2015 – 20th March 2016

A leader of Parisian society for 50 years, an ambassador for French art, founder of La Société des Grandes Auditions Musicales de France, and reportedly instrumental to both the Entente Cordiale and Marie Curie establishing the Institut du Radium, Élizabeth Greffulhe gained admiration from every direction during her lifetime (1860-1952). With such a powerful presence and busy social calendar, the Countess accumulated an equally impressive wardrobe, which Palais Galliéra is exhibiting until March.

This 50 piece collection showcases her extraordinary life via the clothes she wore; all of which were custom-made by the leading couturiers including Lanvin. A journalist described her at 22 as hating ‘…the commonplace. Original in every way, her styles, her fashions…her dresses, which are created for her or by her, resemble those of no one else’. Think a trailing nude silk satin evening gown with a deep V embroidered with glass and silvered tubes, ostrich feather fans, a silver lamé coat and an embroidered Russian cape gifted from Tsar Nicholas II… and it’ll be easy to paint a truly unique and decadent picture. Fashion and history fans are encouraged to catch this fascinating exhibition, located a mere 13 minute stroll from our five-star hotel, before it moves on to the museum at New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology later in the year.

Haute Couture 

Various Locations

24th – 28th January 2015

Haute Couture is a fashion phenomenon exclusive to Paris, during which a handful of carefully selected fashion houses showcase their most admired work. Haute Couture translates as high dressmaking, but is better known as high fashion, and offers the customer a custom-fitted item that’s been painstakingly constructed by hand. These high-quality low-quantity garments fetch five figure price tags, which is unsurprising when it’s been reported that a mere metre of fabric can take up to four hours to hand embroider. Expect jewel encrusted dresses, flowing tulle skirts and embellished bodices from the likes of Chanel, Christian Dior, Schiaparelli, Atelier Versace, Valentino and Elie Saab when the five day event returns this January.

The prestige of being able to label and present garments under the banner of Haute Couture is so high that the term is actually protected by law. Only those companies named by the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture can do so, and even then there are rules that couture houses must follow in order to maintain the title such as employing a minimum of 15 full time staff at their own Parisian workshop, and present at least 50 original designs every season. Its origins trace back to Marie Antoinette’s fashion designer Rose Bertin, while the modern practise was considered to have started courtesy of a Lincolnshire-born Paris-based designer named Charles Fredrick Worth in the 1860s. Fast-forward to the present day and the art continues in each designer’s beautiful creation, as well as the house’s outstanding presentations, with Chanel’s tending to top the must-see list. With the fashion pack descending on the city’s streets and a whole array of ostentatious parties on offer, Haute Couture is the perfect event to see and be seen.

Men’s Fashion 

Various Locations 

20th – 24th January 2015

Every January and February, the streets of four of the world’s most stylish cities fill with well-groomed fashion editors, buyers and bloggers; all eager to see what they’ll be wearing when autumn comes around. Following London Collections Men and Milan’s Men’s Fashion Week, Paris will be next to showcase the latest creations from an array of renowned designers in a variety of stunning venues across the city. Chiselled jawed models will be parading down the catwalks for the likes of master-tailor Yohji Yamamoto, leather-aficionado Rick Owens, Ann Demeulemeester who initially rose to fame in collective Antwerp Six, and French fashion institutions such as Louis Vuitton, Saint Laurent, Dior and Lanvin.

Alongside the main catwalks, there will also be a range of multi-label and single designer showrooms; each of which will offer the chance to see clothing collections by the likes of Marni and Lagerfeld, alongside sleek watches from Uniform Wares and edgy Markus Lupfer footwear. Those seeking further inspiration for A/W 16 trends can also attend tradeshows including Tranoï Homme, which will offer chic events and the chance to see pieces from over 1,000 designers. While September’s catwalks impressed the crowds with the likes of apple green suede trousers from Hermès, pinstriped baggy trousers at Lanvin, a chinoiserie inspired satin baseball jacket at Louis Vuitton and the accessory of the season; a beige baseball cap à la Balmain… January’s offerings will be sure to leave crowds equally awe-inspired. 

From couture catwalks, to the enchanting wardrobe of one of the city’s most admired women, and an informative, family-friendly arts exhibition, there are many ways to feel inspired from the start of 2016 during a five-star stay in Paris at Hotel Balzac.


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