Sophisticated Living Indianapolis

JUL-AUG 2017

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I arrived in Paris 96 years and 29 days after Ernest Hemingway and his new bride Hadley, who were somewhat unprepared for the dreariness of winter in the city. During those first few months, Hemingway wrote to his colleague, American novelist Sherwood Anderson, remarking about the cold and his low spirits saying, "I do not know what I thought Paris would be like but it was not that way." Indeed, it is easy to love Paris in the springtime, but I find it even more beguiling in the winter, when its soul is laid as bare as the leafless trees that line the banks of the Seine. Admiring the architecture of naked branches reaching out in all directions, I am reminded of the decorative iron railings that adorn the famous façades of Baron Haussmann buildings lining the boulevards. With no indoor plumbing, the Hemingway's first apartment at 74 rue Cardinal Lemoine in the 5th arrondissement was less-than-ideal. In spite of the primitive conditions, the couple embraced their bohemian lifestyle, buoyed by a strong US dollar and an influx of stellar literary and artistic luminaries that made the 1920s a great time to be a writer in Paris. Capitalizing on convivial connections and the pervading creative atmosphere, Hemingway was soon on a path to infamy. I know I'm not alone in my romanticized and heavily rose-colored view of the people and places of this era (perpetuated even further by the Woody Allen film Midnight in Paris), so for my most recent trip to the City of Lights, we made it our mission to tread the timeworn footsteps of literary legends. Eschewing the traditional hotel route, we opted instead for a more "authentic" Parisian experience by renting an apartment through Paris Perfect (, a company founded more than 20 years ago by a former French cardiac surgeon and his American investment banker wife. Working with the Paris Perfect team to whittle down the available properties–ranging in size from a studio unit to a sprawling five-bedroom villa, based on our likes, dislikes and intended activities–we were able to find an ideal match. And ideal it was, as our "Champagne" apartment, located on the Left Bank in the heart or the 7th arrondissement (from $435/night), was a far cry from the squalor of Hemingway's first abode. 58 PAR IS IN ER NEST Tracing the footsteps of a literary giant Written by Bridget Williams e view across the rooftops of the 7th arrondissement to the Eiffel Tower from the three-bedroom 'Margaux' apartment

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