Haunted Paris

Paris and surrounding are full of ghost stories that has been told  many times.  People who have interest in this subject will explore all haunted spot.  Whether is in Paris or other places, they will find what they are looking for.   Here are stories that will intrigue readers in Halloween night.

CATACOMBS OF PARIS

Paris catacombs

It is said to be haunted by strange orbs and human figures from different centuries.  there have been reports of voices being heard through the walls and the feeling of being stared at.  Another legend of the catacomb is the green man.  At the end of eighteenth century, the quarry men working on the stones designed to shape modern Paris saw a green man leaping through the galleries and hiding in wells and cellars.  Those who saw him were cursed, and even today people will feel a presence behind them without ever being able to identify if  it was the  “greenman”

THE RED MAN OF TUILERIES

It seems that the palace of the Tuileries is haunted by a butcher, named John the Flayer. He worked for Queen Catherine de Medici, who had a passion for the occult sciences. The henchman was in charge of the queen’s relationship with wizards and warlocks.  But Jean  started to know a little too much, and Catherine de Medici had him murdered. Before he died, he threatened his murderer Neuville: “I’ll come back to haunt you.  He did not live well the following days. He felt like he was being followed. The Queen’s astrologer, Cosme Ruggieri, went to check the scene of the crime and found nothing , only a pool of blood. Shortly after, the astrologer had a vision of John, who predicted that the queen would die “near St. Germain.” Catherine de Medici then fled from all places bearing this name. It was in her death bed that she was overtaken by fate. His confessor was called Julien de Saint Germain.   Since then, the red man of the Tuileries appeared to Louis XVIII, to Marie-Antoinette, prisoners at the Tuileries before  execution, to Napoleon the day before the Battle of Waterloo and in the inferno of Communards burning the palace of the Tuileries.

PALACE OF VERSAILLES

640px-Palace_2,_Versailles_August_2013

Once home to the French royal family between 1682 to 1789.  A few tourists and employees have seen people in 18th century clothing.  There have been sightings of Queen Marie Antoinette, orbs and ghostly presences in tourists’ photos and descriptions of being touched by the  unseen .

 

pont-marie-paris-france-all-year

THE MARIE BRIDGE PHANTOM

It is said during the German occupation, a French woman who was married to a resistance had an affair with a Nazi officer.  She was a spy for her husband.  On a cold night she waited for him on Marie bridge,  he did not come and she froze to death.   People would hear her sobbing in the dark on the bridge.  A story do doubt destined to torment the collaborators.

PHANTOM OF MONTSOURIS PARK

The phantom  of Isaure de Montsouris would haunt this park located in the south of Paris since his assassination with ax by a band of looters in 1831.  One would regularly see his specter stroll near the Bardo, a small monument of the park which has mysteriously burned in 1991, while 15 million francs had been used for its renovation.  Since then, the silhouette of the beheaded has been seen, moans have been heard.  Montsouris park also a place where Dr. Guillotin tested for the first time his macabre guillotine in 1792 .

 

FATHER LACHAISE CEMETERY

The largest cemetery in Paris, France.  It is the most visited cemetery in the world and is said to be one of the most haunted cemeteries in Europe.  Some people have experienced overwhelming shivers and a sense of unease, while others have experienced a  feeling of calmness.  Claims have been made of photos  of visitors and investigators revealing orbs and ghostly apparitions.

 

 

Peacocks in cherry blossoms

Bagatelle gardens, Paris with their peacock showing off their gorgeous plumage.   The birds enjoying their leisure time among cherry blossom trees.    They roost on tree and nest on ground.  India chose blue peacock as their national bird, often you can find these birds in royal palaces.

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Jungle delight at Rainforest Cafe

Rainforest Cafe at Disney Village Marne La Vallee France
Rainforest Cafe at Disney Village Marne La Vallee France

Animated animals lurking through lush vegetation, glimpse of elephants, gorillas and orangutan surrounded by tropical birds and macaws bathed in the mist of sounds of a tropical jungle, Rainforest Cafe is certainly one of the most impressive fun restaurant in Disney Village. It all began in 1989 when its creator Steven Schussler imagined dining surrounded by a tropical, developed the concept and transformed his home in Minneapolis into the first “jungle” style Cafe recreating a tropical forest with aquariums, exotic animals and birds as well as a retail shop. The Rainforest Cafe was born. But it was not till 1994 when Lyle Berman of Grand Casino took interest in the idea and help finance the making of the first Rainforest Cafe at the Mall of America in Blommington, Minnesota. In 2000 Rainforest Cafe was bought by the Texas based Landry’s Restaurant Inc. Today this original concept expanded and franchised world wide in Mexico, Canada, Dubai, Tokyo, London and can be enjoyed by visitors coming to Disney village in Marne La Vallee France. Managed by Groupeflo, France largest restaurant company Rainforest Cafe attracts people of all ages and children love it. For the kid’s corner it is great fun to meet up with the forest inhabitants such as Chacha the red eyed tree frog, Bamba the gorilla, Maya the jaguar, Tuki the elephant, Nile the crocodile, Ozzie the Orangutan and Rio the macaw. Many of the dishes are also named after these wild bunch. Active in charity work Rainforest Cafe helps to preserve animals world wide. “Throw a coin and make a wish” in a small alligator wishing well at the entrance of the restaurant or at another in the Atlas man waterfall in the restaurant, where visitors can throw coins and make their wish. A fun way to donate, and with all coins collected, it goes for world wide animal preservation. The entrance to the restaurant itself is an original concept and even I was impressed after passing through the shop, greeted by a beautifully kept aquarium. A delightful representation showcasing marine life habitat as a result of a working partnership with Sea Life of Val d’Europe. Another enchanting aquarium filled with various species of fishes can be seen at the Atlas room.

After meeting up with our jungle friends meet Fabrice Duranel the chief cook of Rainforest Cafe who has nicely orchestrated the classic Tex Mex cuisine from appetizing starters to delicious desert accompanied with lush tropical cocktails.

Fabrice Duranel Chief cook of Rainforest Cafe at Disney Village Marne La Vallee
Fabrice Duranel Chief cook of Rainforest Cafe at Disney Village Marne La Vallee

And now let’s travel into the deepest epicurean jungle delight skilfully concocted by Fabrice with an array exotic cocktail drinks. My Rainforest Ricky a mixture of pineapple orange, apple, strawberry and grapefruit juice is an absolute must try and so is the Virgin Colada a refreshing blend of coconut cream and pineapple juice. For alcoholic lovers there is a long endless list of great choices from classic margarita to mojito and for those keen on beers, have a go for their Coronarita daredevil cocktail – a frozen margarita topped with Corona beer !

After a refreshing plunge into the river of cocktails time to unwind while savouring some jungle starters. For solo adventurers, dip into Rainforest Pita Quesadillas, deliciously grilled chicken, roasted peppers caramelized onions and melted cheese wrapped around toasted pita bread. Another choice is to share between friends a fun way to begin the epicurean journey with an awesome appetizer adventure, the house favourite, featuring an array of tidbits around Tam Tam chicken wings, pico de gallo (mexican style mixture of tomatoes, onions and jalapenos peppers) on garlic bread, crispy fried chicken, blue cheese sauce and guacamole served with a mountain of fried sliced sweet potatoes.

Hunger still creeping through, dive deeper into a cornucopia of jungle treat with a selection of delicious exquisite goodies. The exotic Siva’s curry will surely entice you with a hearty platter of tasty sautéed chicken and shrimps, pineapple cloaked in light creamy coconut sauce topped with sweet smelling basmati rice. For pasta lovers a choice of Rasta Pasta wrapped around penne with chicken, spinach, broccoli, red bell peppers and parmesan cheese tossed in garlic cream sauce or natural Japanese style Udon pasta engulfed around asparagus, zucchini, peas tossed in tomato garlic cream sauce and pine nut pesto.

For burger lovers a choice of great burgers are offered featuring their most popular dish, the French burger delight made with special French beef- the Aubrac beef (well known French cattle breed that goes back centuries, raised in the rugged highlands and moors of Aubrac, southern Massif Central) topped with bacon, fresh lettuce, fried onion, Bleu d’Auvergne cheese, safari sauce and coleslaw.

Their grilled meats are also a must try with a unique Earth Sea platter, when the land meets the ocean to emerge as an irrisistable delectable duo of char grilled filet Steak & grilled Shrimp Rainforest syle with French style Béarnaise sauce served with rocket salad complete with its jacket potatoes topped with sour cream and Cheddar cheese. Another choice would go to their grilled meat dish, Maya’s mixed grill with BBQ spare ribs, smoked beef, sausages served with corn on the cob and French Fries.

Still hungry ? then try out their luscious Amazon fajitas, chicken, beff or combo fajitas served over grilled onions and bell peppers with sour cream, cheese, salsa, guacamole and flour tortillas.

Our epicurean jungle trip is soon ending, but wouldn’t it be nice to end our trip with sweet tasting delicacies and there is a yummy list on their menu. Among others are Bamba’s pancake – a warm pancake served with vanilla ice cream, pan sauteed bananas topped with maple syrup chocolate sauce and whipped cream. The volcano is another explosive experience and to share with friends too, is made of a giant chocolate brownie cake with nuts served with vanilla ice cream whipped cream and caramel sauce. Candle sparklers may also be placed on cakes for special treats. My desert choice perhaps goes to Maya mango sorbet. A sweet tasting fresh mango puree, mango topped with raspberry sauce and chocolate wafer.

Here ends our epicurean jungle trip and for those visiting Disney Village in Marne La Vallee just a few kilometres from Paris, it is certainly worthwhile visiting the friendly forest inhabitants while enjoying their hospitality at their home, the Rainforest Cafe.

41

The Rainforest Cafe
Disney Village
Disneyland Paris
77705 Marne-la-vallée Chessy
France

Open daily Monday through Sunday from 11.30 am – 11.00 pm (Saturday till midnight)
Telephone +33(0)1.60.43.65.65

Tropical carnival in Paris

Summer carnival parading at the Champs Elysées in Paris France

Summer begins with music and dance parading along the Champs Elysées in Paris with colourful costumes of the Caribbean to the mesmerizing drum beats. Here are some images from painted children to dancing in streets accompanied by musicians from the exotic islands.

Dancing in the streets in their most colourful costumes.

Masked dancers wrapped in their most beautiful silk costumes


More smiling dancers in their feathery and dazzling costumes

While not forgetting the queens of the Summer Carnival

Dazzling jewels of the Maharajas

Jeweled crown set with pearls, diamonds, emeralds, rubies and bird of paradise. Nepal 1900 Al Thani collection

Entering the dimly lit halls of the Grand Palais set in an imaginative contemporary style are the fabulous jewels illustrating the magnificence of the great Mughal rulers of India. From the dynastic Mughal period founded by the Turco Mongol conqueror Babur descendant of Tamerlan and Gengis Khan in the sixteenth century till the fall of the great Indian empire to the extravagant lives of the Maharaja is impressively reflected through the fabulous and dazzling Al Thani collection. The exhibiiton gathers around some beautiful gem stones depicting Indian jewelry used at court. From jade and rock crystals to precious stones gives us an image of how these fabulous gems played an important role at the courts. Whether it be wine cups, furniture or ornamental stones worn as part of their royal regalia, these jewelry are beautifully created while depicting figurative symbols of power and prestige. Portraits made of these rulers from Humayun and Akbar to Jahangir and Shah Jahan till Bahadur Shah II, the last Mughal emperor exiled by the British to Burma in the nineteenth century, are always accompanied by richly ornamented embroidered costumes and bejeweled turban studded with precious stones. If these gems are worn by women they were more often worn by men to illustrate their power and wealth. One of the most impressive is an array of uniquely cut diamonds seen upon entering the treasury halL. Among them is the Idol’s Eye, a flawless 70,21 carat Golconda light blue diamond which has legends attached to it. One of the legends tell of how the diamond was stolen from the eye of a Hindu statue from a sacred temple. Another is the rosy pink Agra diamond which originated as far back as the sixteenth century re cut in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The famous historic diamond is perhaps the Arcot II, one of the two diamonds given to Queen Charlotte in the mid eighteenth century by Nawab Mohammed Ali Khan WalaJah of Arcot, a close ally to the British. These diamonds part of Her Majesty’s personal jewels were supposed to be sold at her death and funds divided between her daughters, but was kept by her son George IV who later set it as part of his crown. The diamonds were later set for the crown of Queen Adelaide consort of William IV, son of George III. These two flawless Arcot diamonds undoubtedly came from the Golconda mines were later sold to the Duke of Westminster who made it as a tiara. He then re sold it to Harry Winston, who dismantled the two Arcot’s diamonds and sold it as two separate stones to private collectors. Arcot II acquired by Sheikh Hamad bin Abdullah now part of the Al Thani collection is shown at the exhibiton. Alongside diamonds is an array of engraved emeralds such as the emerald of Shah Jahan with his name inscribed in Persian.

Glittering ornamental gems decorate garments and turbans. A typical Indian style of jewelry making popular in the Mughal era is known as the kundan technique or setting precious stoned in gold using enamels. Stylized turban decorations have been specially created by famous jewelers such as Cartier. The spinel rubies are often used in jewelry making such as seen in the North Indian style turban decoration where the name of Shah Jahan is inscribed in Persian on the two spinel stones.

The fine peacock brooch is another piece of historic gem. Set in gold, diamonds and enamel the brooch was by created by Mellerio in 1905 for the Maharaja of Kapurthala who gave it to his fifth wife, the Spanish flamenco dancer Anita Delgado. Nose ornaments are also beautifully made such as that made at the beginning of the last century, stunningly carved dagger set in gold and gemstones, necklaces,rings and gold bracelet set in rubies from Jaipur. If in the past Indian jewelers worked closely with the court, by the beginning of the last century, European designers such as Cartier successfully catered to the extravagant taste of the Maharajas. It is the merging of both traditional Indian and western styles using modern European methods that gave birth to some of the most spectacular jewelry, reflecting courtly continuity of treasured gem stones as bodily ornaments. After exhibitions in New York and London and for the first time shown in Paris, a pageantry of exquisite jewels of the Indian royal courts from the Al Thani collection displayed alongside contemporary pieces is certainly not be missed. The exhibition is accompanied by an in depth richly illustrated catalogue.

From the great Mughals to the Maharajas
Jewels from the Al Thani collection
Grand Palais, Salon d’Honneur
29 March – 5 June 2017
Open daily except Tuesday 10 a.m – 8 p.m
Late night opening Wednesday till 10 p.m
Closed Monday 1st May

Cherry Blossoms in Paris

Springtime in Paris

Spring is finally here with rosy pink and white coloured petals bloom along the many gardens and streets of Paris. Each year, these cherry blossom trees beautify the city and although it only last a few weeks, it does make a difference after the cold wintry days. With the sunny weather approaching, time to walk through the city’s delightful gardens while enjoying these ephemeral dancing petals showing off their most splendoured silhouettes.

Jungle delight at Rainforest Cafe

Rainforest Cafe at Disney Village Marne La Vallee France
Rainforest Cafe at Disney Village Marne La Vallee France

Animated animals lurking through lush vegetation, glimpse of elephants, gorillas and orangutan surrounded by tropical birds and macaws bathed in the mist of sounds of a tropical jungle, Rainforest Cafe is certainly one of the most impressive fun restaurant in Disney Village. It all began in 1989 when its creator Steven Schussler imagined dining surrounded by a tropical, developed the concept and transformed his home in Minneapolis into the first “jungle” style Cafe recreating a tropical forest with aquariums, exotic animals and birds as well as a retail shop. The Rainforest Cafe was born. But it was not till 1994 when Lyle Berman of Grand Casino took interest in the idea and help finance the making of the first Rainforest Cafe at the Mall of America in Blommington, Minnesota. In 2000 Rainforest Cafe was bought by the Texas based Landry’s Restaurant Inc. Today this original concept expanded and franchised world wide in Mexico, Canada, Dubai, Tokyo, London and can be enjoyed by visitors coming to Disney village in Marne La Vallee France. Managed by Groupeflo, France largest restaurant company Rainforest Cafe attracts people of all ages and children love it. For the kid’s corner it is great fun to meet up with the forest inhabitants such as Chacha the red eyed tree frog, Bamba the gorilla, Maya the jaguar, Tuki the elephant, Nile the crocodile, Ozzie the Orangutan and Rio the macaw. Many of the dishes are also named after these wild bunch. Active in charity work Rainforest Cafe helps to preserve animals world wide. “Throw a coin and make a wish” in a small alligator wishing well at the entrance of the restaurant or at another in the Atlas man waterfall in the restaurant, where visitors can throw coins and make their wish. A fun way to donate, and with all coins collected, it goes for world wide animal preservation. The entrance to the restaurant itself is an original concept and even I was impressed after passing through the shop, greeted by a beautifully kept aquarium. A delightful representation showcasing marine life habitat as a result of a working partnership with Sea Life of Val d’Europe. Another enchanting aquarium filled with various species of fishes can be seen at the Atlas room.

After meeting up with our jungle friends meet Fabrice Duranel the chief cook of Rainforest Cafe who has nicely orchestrated the classic Tex Mex cuisine from appetizing starters to delicious desert accompanied with lush tropical cocktails.

Fabrice Duranel Chief cook of Rainforest Cafe at Disney Village Marne La Vallee
Fabrice Duranel Chief cook of Rainforest Cafe at Disney Village Marne La Vallee

And now let’s travel into the deepest epicurean jungle delight skilfully concocted by Fabrice with an array exotic cocktail drinks. My Rainforest Ricky a mixture of pineapple orange, apple, strawberry and grapefruit juice is an absolute must try and so is the Virgin Colada a refreshing blend of coconut cream and pineapple juice. For alcoholic lovers there is a long endless list of great choices from classic margarita to mojito and for those keen on beers, have a go for their Coronarita daredevil cocktail – a frozen margarita topped with Corona beer !

After a refreshing plunge into the river of cocktails time to unwind while savouring some jungle starters. For solo adventurers, dip into Rainforest Pita Quesadillas, deliciously grilled chicken, roasted peppers caramelized onions and melted cheese wrapped around toasted pita bread. Another choice is to share between friends a fun way to begin the epicurean journey with an awesome appetizer adventure, the house favourite, featuring an array of tidbits around Tam Tam chicken wings, pico de gallo (mexican style mixture of tomatoes, onions and jalapenos peppers) on garlic bread, crispy fried chicken, blue cheese sauce and guacamole served with a mountain of fried sliced sweet potatoes.

Hunger still creeping through, dive deeper into a cornucopia of jungle treat with a selection of delicious exquisite goodies. The exotic Siva’s curry will surely entice you with a hearty platter of tasty sautéed chicken and shrimps, pineapple cloaked in light creamy coconut sauce topped with sweet smelling basmati rice. For pasta lovers a choice of Rasta Pasta wrapped around penne with chicken, spinach, broccoli, red bell peppers and parmesan cheese tossed in garlic cream sauce or natural Japanese style Udon pasta engulfed around asparagus, zucchini, peas tossed in tomato garlic cream sauce and pine nut pesto.

For burger lovers a choice of great burgers are offered featuring their most popular dish, the French burger delight made with special French beef- the Aubrac beef (well known French cattle breed that goes back centuries, raised in the rugged highlands and moors of Aubrac, southern Massif Central) topped with bacon, fresh lettuce, fried onion, Bleu d’Auvergne cheese, safari sauce and coleslaw.

Their grilled meats are also a must try with a unique Earth Sea platter, when the land meets the ocean to emerge as an irrisistable delectable duo of char grilled filet Steak & grilled Shrimp Rainforest syle with French style Béarnaise sauce served with rocket salad complete with its jacket potatoes topped with sour cream and Cheddar cheese. Another choice would go to their grilled meat dish, Maya’s mixed grill with BBQ spare ribs, smoked beef, sausages served with corn on the cob and French Fries.

Still hungry ? then try out their luscious Amazon fajitas, chicken, beff or combo fajitas served over grilled onions and bell peppers with sour cream, cheese, salsa, guacamole and flour tortillas.

Our epicurean jungle trip is soon ending, but wouldn’t it be nice to end our trip with sweet tasting delicacies and there is a yummy list on their menu. Among others are Bamba’s pancake – a warm pancake served with vanilla ice cream, pan sauteed bananas topped with maple syrup chocolate sauce and whipped cream. The volcano is another explosive experience and to share with friends too, is made of a giant chocolate brownie cake with nuts served with vanilla ice cream whipped cream and caramel sauce. Candle sparklers may also be placed on cakes for special treats. My desert choice perhaps goes to Maya mango sorbet. A sweet tasting fresh mango puree, mango topped with raspberry sauce and chocolate wafer.

Here ends our epicurean jungle trip and for those visiting Disney Village in Marne La Vallee just a few kilometres from Paris, it is certainly worthwhile visiting the friendly forest inhabitants while enjoying their hospitality at their home, the Rainforest Cafe.

41

The Rainforest Cafe
Disney Village
Disneyland Paris
77705 Marne-la-vallée Chessy
France

Open daily Monday through Sunday from 11.30 am – 11.00 pm (Saturday till midnight)
Telephone +33(0)1.60.43.65.65