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EXPERIENCE la Vie Française




View of Paris from Sacre Coeur

Bringing Paris Straight to your Inbox Bienvenue We hope to bring more romance and charm in your life with every issue. Springtime is a time for growth and all things new, which is why we decided to begin this new venture in June. We feature encouraging stories, romance planning tips, stunning photography, and much more in every issue, so you too can be a part of Paris. In this issue we will get a taste of French Cuisine as we taste Nina Timm’s delectable éclairs. Take a step into an impressionist painting as we help you plan your weekend getaway in Giverny with Monet’s gorgeous gardens. We sit down with American native, Courtney, and hear how she found love in Paris. And then we travel out to Château de la Cazine to see just what it takes to plan an event in your very own French castle!

We couldn’t be more excited for the launch of our new e-magazine, and we are so happy to welcome all of our new readers to be inspired by all things French and lovely! Romantic Paris was born out of a desire to share Paris with more people around the world, and I think Mimi Bleu of Belle Inspiration put it best when she said “because Romance and Paris just go together.”


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We hope you will find new your inner artist with our photography tips, and maybe even a little style inspiration from our fashion shoot with Eva! Thank you so much for joining us and in celebration of this new source of entertainment we want to wish you and your family a very happy summer! Bisous,




Founder/Editor in Chief Krystal Kenney Editor Mimi Bleu Editorial Assistant Tina Repoff Art Direction Sophie Gerard Graphics Designer Marcelle Bernard Editing/Proofing Alison Andy Publisher

The content of this issue is the exclusive property of Romantic Paris Magazine. All rights of reproduction, even partial, are reserved for all countries. All content of the publication is protected by copyright. Any total or partial reproduction, in all genres and in all languages, is prohibited without written consent of Romantic Paris Magazine. Recipes are for informational purposes only and have not been kitchentested by us, so must be used at reader's discretion. All brand logos reviewed are the property of their respective owners. Copyright Š 2014. Romantic Paris Magazine. All rights reserved.

Les Deux Magot, Paris

Contents 12 Amour à Paris Courtney & Michaël

27 My Easy Chocolate Éclairs By Nina Timms

35 Living the Dream, An Interview with Elaine Biss

44 Weekend Getaway Giverny


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54 Photography Tips Classic Paris By Krystal Kenney

64 Ch창teau de la Cazine Meet Event Planner Abi Rangecroft

76 Styled Shoot Eva in Paris


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Free phone consultation to Romantic Paris readers! Contact Euro Start Entreprises, 17 Avenue George V, 75008 Paris Tel : 01 53 57 49 10

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Courtney & Michaël

Amour à Paris

ourtney Lacomblez, from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, accomplished something that most of us only dream of… she fell in love in Paris and made her new home with her now French husband.

She was inspired to come to Paris by her grandfather, who was in Normandy on D-Day. Courtney told us “He loved France and often taught me French words. He would tell me how the French were so hospitable during the war and he even introduced me to la gastronomie.” When she first arrived in the city of lights she was involved with a study abroad program through Marquette University/UW-Milwaukee, and attended the Institut Catholique de Paris. Courtney next went onto grad school at the American University in Paris with her main goal being to enrich her understanding of French culture and to speak French fluently.


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And that’s when she met her future French husband to be, Michaël! It was a normal day and she was making her way through the bustling SaintSulpice metro stop. They accidentally bumped into each other on the stairs. “We both apologized and continued on, but as I was waiting on the platform he came back. The rest is history,” Courtney told us. Never in her life did she imagine moving to Paris full-time, but she shared with us that “the best things that have happened in my life have been those that I never imagined myself doing.” I think those are some words we could all live by. When Courtney broke the news to her family, her mother bawled her eyes out and her father had a stern, practical point of view. “He didn’t want me to think I was off to live in some fantasy world, la vie en rose, but the French bureaucracy and the legal red tape took care of that.”


“The best thing been those tha


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gs that have happened in my life have at I never imagined myself doing.�


hey accidentally bumped into each other on the stairs. “We both apologized and continued on, but as I was waiting on the platform he came back. The rest is history.�


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ow Courtney is the marketing manager for Paris Rental (, a company that specializes in furnished apartment rentals for expats coming to live in Paris. One of the pleasures of her job is running the Paris Rental Blog (, which features many practical articles on renting, buying and living in Paris. She hopes to help other expats with their dayto-day life in Paris, and even to inform them before they arrive. She is also in charge of the social media accounts and networking with a goal of reaching out to an international clientele and supporting commercial colleagues.


And what was the toughest part of transitioning to life in France she told us, “finding my own sense of identity.” Now I’m somewhat of a hybrid, a mix between an American expat in Paris and an American (they are not the same!). I highly recommend reading Pamela Druckerman’s article on being an American in Paris here.” When asked if she found Paris to be a romantic city she shared with us “you can be charmed right off your feet by the the sparkle of the Eiffel Tower, Haussmannian buildings, enticing pâtisseries, fashion, outdoor markets, etc., but the real séducteur that is Paris lies in the secret, insolite areas. I’ve adopted the flâneur quality Paris induces. For example, I tend to walk at a slower pace, and I observe, discover, wander… Je flâne. Life seems to move in slow motion and I become a philosopher.”

Courtney loves enjoying the simple things like the fine food of French restaurants! “Je suis gourmande!”

But the thing Courtney loves most about her new life with her Frenchy love is “knowing that whatever continent we’re on, we will find a home in each other.”


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Personalized Private Tours

Flea Markets & Brocantes, Patisseries & CafÊs, the French Countryside, Buying Tours for Boutique Owners and More ‌

My Easy

Chocolate ĂŠclairs

A recipe by Nina Timm 27

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Ingredients Makes 24 eclairs of about 10cm long For the Choux buns 250 ml boiling water / 8 ounces 125 ml butter / 4 ounces 250 ml cake flour / 8 ounces 3 jumbo eggs or 4 large For the filling 250 ml cream – whipped / 8 ounces 2 tbsp caster sugar 100 gr dark chocolate – melted / 3.5 ounces


Instructions Preheat

stick spray or

butter and allo

Add all t

comes away f

in the bowl of

Beat the

eggs one by o

a piping bag a

Bake for

of each choux

reduced to 16

ened. Remov

container unti

To fill: Whip t

chocolate in a

chocolate. On

to long in adv

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the oven to 180C. Prepare a baking sheet by spraying it with non-

r lining it with baking paper. Boil the water in a small pot and add the

ow to melt.

the cake flour in at once and stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture

from the sides of the pot. Remove from the heat and place the mixture

f your mixer.

e flour mixture for about 1 minute so that it can cool and then add the

one, beating in between each addition of eggs. Spoon the mixture into

and pipe 10cm long choux buns on the baking paper.

r 25 minutes, remove from the oven and make a small cut on the side

x bun to release the steam. Place back in the oven, with heat now

60C. Bake for another 5 minutes or until choux buns have now hard-

ve from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack. Keep in an airtight

il needed.

the cream with the caster sugar and pipe into the choux buns. Melt the

a small bowl over a pot of hot water and then dip each eclair into the

ne the eclairs are filled they do not stay hard for long, so do not make



Our Favorite Éclairs in Paris L’éclairs de Génie L’Atelier de L’éclair Pierre Hermé

Nina Timm of My Easy Cooking, makes life in the kitchen a pleasant experience. With her easy and affordable recipes, she inspires home cooks to step up their game in a non-intrusive and fun way! These chocolate éclairs are the result of simple ingredients put together with love! Enjoy! 32

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Paris cafĂŠ, 5th arrondissement

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Living the Dream An Interview with Artist Elaine Biss


We sat down with artist Elaine Biss of Elaine Biss Designs to learn what inspires her gorgeous French style paintings, and how you too can find your inner artist.

Tell us a little about yourself, who you are? Where you are from? What do you do? I was born on the tropical island of Puerto Rico, to a seamstress who studied high fashion and a furniture designer and carpenter. My mother taught me how to sew and handed me art supplies at a very young age. She provided the basis for what I do today.

How did you get into design and painting? It felt like the natural course of things. Although I love graphic design, logos become the property of the client. I hardly ever see the logos printed or framed for that matter. With illustration work, there is a certain appreciation. I get to see them hanging in a home or office.

Any French artists who particularly inspires you and why? I love Toulouse-Lautrec, Cézanne, Jean Cocteau and Sonia Rykiel. Lautrec`s use of color and flawless composition in his posters has me enamored. Cézanne’s haunting subject matters coupled with the facial expressions have a dark beauty. At a very early age I knew I wanted to draw. While in high school, my teachers noticed I was a bit more advanced than my classmates and suggested I sign up to study commercial art at the local vocational school. Since then, I attended The Art Institute of Pittsburgh and the prestigious Parsons New School of Design in New York City. I am a trained graphic and web designer, with a background in fashion illustration. I work out of my studio in Lancaster, PA doing freelance work.


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Jean Cocteau`s line work is high energy and ahead of his time. And lastly, I love Sonia Rykiel’s story and her work is simply modern elegance. Also, some of my best work is created with some sort of limitation. Either one color, just lines or shapes.


Any advice for women who want to begin painting and creating their own designs? Sharpen your skills. Take classes and grow. Then create. Create and never stop. The more you do the thing you love, the better at it you become. Also, some of my best work is created with some sort of limitation. Either one color, just lines or shapes.

What ideas are you trying to express with your artwork? Elegance in simplicity and beauty in unexpected color.


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Who is your favorite designer and why? I don`t think I have a favorite designer, but I really love the simplicity of design found in the classics like Chanel and Dior.

Any special awards or big name companies you have worked with? I was discovered by Dior through a "Call to Artists" type contest which I won in 2008. I also won Woman of the Year by She Takes on the World that same year. I have been fortunate enough to work for some amazing companies! My favorite is Christian Dior, but I have also worked for Bloomingdale`s, Eileen Fisher NY, New York and Company and Pour La Victoire NY.



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What about Paris inspires you most? Paris is a city filled with history-soaked buildings that hold delicious food, modern shopping and romantic scenery. This city spawns art. I cannot choose just one thing.

How do you start a work - do you have any rituals? I like to wear something red, get up very early and peruse old French magazines and images. I pull my papers and watercolors and I start painting. An average illustration needs about two illustrations before I’m satisfied to achieve the final look, and I have been known to toss my final piece and start over if it doesn`t look right.

Favorite quote? “Some people think luxury is the opposite of poverty. It is not. It is the opposite of vulgarity.� - Coco Chanel

Do you think painting is underappreciated today? It is. Especially because people perceive that digital art is not real art. Digital tools are just that, another tool to create art. Supplies alone can be expensive, not to mention the time, effort and whatever schooling the artist had. It is not an inexpensive endeavor. Learn more about Elaine Biss and her artistic endeavors on her website:


The moment you stop explor your work dies.


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Romantic Paris Magazine





iverny is most famous for being the home of famous impressionist painter Claude Monet. Monet passed by this picturesque Normandy village by train and decided to rent a home there, and eventually buy that very same home because he was so inspired by all the beauty that surrounded the area. Why not follow in Monet’s footsteps and visit this gorgeous area yourself. Springtime is of course the perfect time to visit. Be awakened by the vivid colors and green sprouting up everywhere. Monet spent years creating the perfect garden that he wanted to paint. His water lily pond and Japanese style bridge create the perfect setting to get away with your love and imagine yourself walking into one of his very own famous paintings.


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Romantic Paris Magazine

If you are staying in Paris you can take a train directly to the beautiful medieval village of Vernon, once you arrive you can either walk or rent bikes at the station.

There is a nicely paved walkway for you to ride or walk along until you arrive at Monet’s home and gardens.

We recommend you leave early for Giverny because lines can get long in the springtime when everything is in full bloom. You can also save time by purchasing tickets in advance online. The best time to visit the gardens is from April to October.

After you finish in the gardens, make sure to take a peek inside Monet’s home where he raised his own family, and spent the best years of his life, the house itself is a museum where you can learn the full history of Monet’s life, artistic inspiration, and family past.

Be inspired by the vibrant colors and classic furniture, and don’t forget to pack a picnic lunch! You can ride or walk back out to the countryside and soak up the sunshine while you dine on baguettes and some fine wine. The medieval village of Vernon is well worth a visit, and only a short ride away from the gardens and full of gorgeous architecture, boulangeries, and vintage shops.



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The water lily pond is a highlight at Monet’s Giverny


onet considered his garden a gift to the world, and many visitors would agree it is one of the most beautiful places you will ever visit. Don’t miss out on the chance to be inspired and walk into a rare painting. You won’t be disappointed by this surreal setting.


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Photograpahy Tips

Classic Paris By Krystal Kenney



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ry to create the illusion of three levels in your photograph. See a great example of this here with the hanging tree in the foreground, the people in the middle, and the bridge in the background. 57


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ry to create different angles to add interest to a scene. Get low, or climb on top of a bench to get higher and gain a different perspective.


ook for repeats in design like parallel windows or shutters for more interesting shots.


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Romantic Paris Magazine

ummertime is the perfect time of year to capture vibrant color, light reflecting off of water is always beautiful as shown here on the Seine.



ver dreamed about what it takes to host your very own party at a château? We sat down with wedding planner, Abi Rangecroft, of Château de la Cazine, to see just what it takes to plan your fantasy event in your very own castle for a day!

Think cuisine, luxury, and grandeur of course! What are the main highlights of Château de la Cazine? A couple of the many highlights of Château de la Cazine would have to be the absolutely fantastic food combined with the stunning grandeur of the venue. Our team of chefs are experts when it comes to sourcing the best of local and fresh produce, preparing it to a standard which is truly out of this world. Our Michelin star only goes to highlight this.

Château de la Cazine offers its very own Champagne, can you tell us a little more about it? Exclusive to Château de la Cazine, Cuvée de la Cazine is a delightful champagne which has been selected by our head sommelier to be of the utmost quality with a beautifully delicate perfumed flavor. Produced using traditional artisanal methods, Cuvée de la Cazine remains very popular with our guests.


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he plethora of activities for guests to enjoy in the local area including horseback riding, cycling, walking, swimming, boating, tennis and more‌

Château de la Cazine is nestled in the Limousin area of France 68

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Romantic Paris Magazine

What are some of the special details Château de la Cazine offers to future brides? Our brides love having their guests enjoy Michelin standard meals as well as accommodation for a whole weekend provided for them, meaning that they can spend two glorious days celebrating and relaxing with their loved ones. They also often tell us how much they appreciate having a personal Wedding Planner on hand to help to take any hassles out of marrying abroad. The bride’s choice of flowers are even included as part of the package with us, providing that extra special final touch.

Why would you recommend having your day at a Château versus a big city such as Paris? Gosh, where do we start? The expansive lakes glistening on the horizon… The backdrop of rolling French countryside and an established arboretum… The plethora of picturesque French villages a stone’s throw from the château… The peace and tranquility of sitting outside and watching a stag wander past. The plethora of activities for guests to enjoy in the local area including horse riding, cycling, walking, swimming, boating, tennis and more… Sitting in your honeymoon suite sipping champagne and looking out over spectacular unspoilt countryside… Need we go on?


Favorite wedding moment? I have to say that my favorite moment of our weddings never really changes – I love it when the bride walks down the aisle and the groom catches his first look at her. This caught in my chest on the first wedding that we held at Château de la Cazine and it never ceases to do so. It’s such a special moment and we are so pleased to have been part of making this moment and the day so perfect and special for our wedding couples.

Name some differences between the typical American Wedding and the typical French wedding? One of my favorite differences between the typical American wedding and the classic French marriage celebration is the ‘Wedding Cake’, the Croquembouche. For those of you who aren’t aware, this is a delectable cone of fresh, cream filled profiteroles bound together by caramel threads. Some couples even like to crack through the caramel with a special silver hammer!

Anything else you would like to add? Couples who choose to marry with us are given a special gift from the team at Château de la Cazine - a complimentary stay with us a year after their wedding to celebrate their First Anniversary!


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A ‘wedding cake’ of fromage adds a fun touch to any event 73

I love it when the bride walks down the aisle and the groom catches his first look at her. ~Abi Rangecraft


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Styled Shoot

Eva in Paris Model: Eva Ullmann

Looking for that classic Parisian look? Red lipstick is always a must. Our model Eva also uses subtle hints of gold to complete her look


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Don’t forget to keep it simple with a black ensemble and hints of grey as demonstrated in Eva’s oversized coat



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Accentuate your curves with a fun belt to pull everything together. Once again the hints of gold bring together Eva’s outfit.


We love Eva’s designer handbag useful for a full day wandering the streets of Paris - perfect for all your newfound treasures inside. 82

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In the Next Issue

August/September 2014

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Madame London A bloke by bloke account of an Englishwoman’s saucy shananigans of love and lust in Paris.

Our regular columnist Madame London spills her secrets on how she went from Mademoiselle to Madame via a circuitous route of extremely dodgy French men and clumsy social encounters.

Catch her first juicy column in the August issue of Romantic Paris… Don’t miss it!

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