Parisians have long been revered for their svelte physiques, though historically this might have more to do with smoking cigarettes and skipping breakfast than healthy living. But in recent years, a slew of new addresses have cropped up around the city, covering every lifestyle trend from juicing to spin classes.
Characteristically, the French have their own sophisticated take on wellness: Think luxurious and bespoke experiences, like private Gyrotonic sessions at the Paris Opera Ballet-endorsed Studio Kinétique or 270-euro buccal massages at Joelle Ciocco, rather than hippie havens or extreme sport habits. In truth, in 2019, it’s still a challenge to find an exercise class scheduled here before 8 a.m. But then again, what is self-care if not a well-deserved rest?
Sol Semilla made its name as an importer of Amazonian superfoods like cacao, maca and acerola, ingredients that inform the rather concise but nourishing menu in its canteen next to Canal Saint-Martin. The cafe, open for lunch and dinner, has an old-school hippie feel (complete with a resident cat) and the food is hearty and full of unusual flavors. Skip the entrees and opt for the daily dish, which will more than cover your daily vegetable intake and is seasoned with myriad potent superfoods. 23 Rue des Vinaigriers, 75010, sol-semilla.fr.
Wild and the Moon
Wild and the Moon dominates the clean-food scene in Paris, with multiple eateries located just minutes apart in the well-heeled Third and Fourth Arrondissements. Each day the fridges are stocked with fresh grab-and-go salads and cold-pressed juices, but the best option here is to settle in and order the hot bowl of the day — always the freshest thing on the menu. For those in need of a reboot, there’s also an exhaustive list of superbowls, smoothies and detoxifying shots, like the Rehab, which are charged with game-changing ingredients and elixirs. wildandthemoon.fr.
Formally known as Bob’s Kitchen — the fleet of eateries that pioneered tasty vegan food in Paris — Kitchen is a low-key organic canteen that pumps out colorful bowls of veggies and rice, topped off with a choice of three different spiced sauces. Also on the menu are vegan smoothies, kombucha, homemade mint lemonade and, for dessert, the ever-popular matcha cookies. 74 Rue des Gravilliers, 75003, kitchenparis.com/en.
Video00:001:001:00How To | Work Out in a Hotel Room
The trainer Anthony Nehra demonstrates exercises that can be done while traveling.CreditCreditScott J. Ross
Maisie Café is something of a clean-eating rarity in the tony First, where traditional bistro fare — not to mention pricey burgers and fries — has reached a saturation point. The owner, Isabella Capece Galeota, got into the game selling her cold-pressed juices online before opening this chic canteen — decorating the whitewashed walls with botanical prints and installing marble-topped tables and pastel green banquettes. The vegan breakfast and lunch menu has the same sense of freshness: seasonal salads, soups and gluten-free focaccias (Capece Galeota is Italian) as well as healthy treats and sweets. It delivers everything — including the much-touted three-day juice cleanse — as well. 32 Rue du Mont Thabor, 75001, maisiecafe.com.
The Left Bank has been a little slow on the wellness uptake, but this sunlit corner cafe, with its joyful yellow-and-white-striped awnings, has one of the city’s most inspiring organic menus around. Created by the Australian naturopath Dominique Gassin, Judy offers the usual breakfast and lunch lineup of cold-pressed juices, superfood smoothies concocted with housemade almond milk, and an array of vegetarian-friendly dishes, but there’s also a daily option of fresh fish and Paleo-friendly meat dishes for the less pure among us. 18 Rue de Fleurus, 75006, judy-paris.com.
Parisians have a longstanding fascination with the L.A. lifestyle, perhaps because it is so seductively foreign. Echo Deli is one of the city’s more recent — and most legitimate — homages to this élan. This is largely thanks to Mailea Weger, an alumna of the cult Venice Beach bakery Gjusta, who has crafted a brunch-driven menu in true Californian style — fresh herbs, fragrant spices and avocados aplenty. While many come for the homemade and gluten-free chilaquiles, those wanting a healthier fix will like the caramelized grapefruit, multigrain pancakes, market salads and the brown rice bowl, which is packed with roasted and pickled veggies. 95 Rue d’Aboukir, 75002, echo-paris.com.
The city’s best-kept secret, this luxurious retreat is hidden away at the top of a nondescript office building in the bustling 10th Arrondissement. The order of the day here is Thai massage, carried out by Ladda, or one of her nimble masseurs, who will stretch and pummel you into a bliss-like state. Also on site: a private Hammam and the occasional yoga class, which takes place in the salon’s spacious sun trap of a lounge. Come for the pampering, stay for the view — it stretches all the way to the Eiffel Tower. 32 Rue de Paradis, 75010, laddaparis.com.
You may be familiar with the French brand’s cult product line, but its flagship Parisian salon, what the company calls its “Embassy of Beauty,” is the only place to experience the full breadth of its range. Set back from the Champs-Élysées, in a charming cobblestone courtyard, the multistory salon is a picture of Parisian elegance, replete with herringbone floors and treatment rooms decked out in a calming palette of soft cream and burnished gold. The best facials here are tailored to the individual after a 30-minute skin analysis — and the technician will also recommend a list of products for you to take home. 32 Avenue des Champs-Élysées, 75008, biologique-recherche.com.
Before the acupuncturist and holistic guru Elaine Huntzinger started a website, her phone number was routinely passed between exhausted editors collapsing into town for Paris Fashion Week. In the privacy of her home in the 11th Arrondissement, Huntzinger uses her training in traditional Chinese medicine to reboot the weary using a mix of acupuncture and cupping therapies. She also specializes in gua sha facials, artfully sculpting the face with rose quartz and jade tools to stimulate circulation, relieving tension and puffiness. The added LED light session promises a youthful glow. elainehuntzinger.com.
Fashion’s biggest names come to stretch, strengthen and tone in this small studio hidden away in the Sentier district. In coveted one-on-one sessions, the trained dancer turned movement therapist Moraima Gaetmank — who also works with the Paris Opera Ballet — and her team offer hands-on sessions that tailor a mix of pilates, Gyrotonics and Garuda methods to each individual. Their rigorous technique has clients limbered-up and feeling two inches taller by the end of each session. 15 Rue du Sentier, 75002, studio-kinetique.com.
There’s perhaps nothing more New-Age Parisian than a literary editor who doubles as a yoga instructor, but that description perfectly fits Sam Guelimi, the founder of the intimate yoga studio Ici. In her light-filled duplex in the 17th Arrondissement, Guelimi teaches a mix of yin, prenatal and postnatal yoga to private clients and small groups. Her careful, nurturing approach reflects her desire to establish a sanctuary for women — influenced by her studies with yogis like Nevine Michaan, and the doula and self-proclaimed self-care “sorceress” Lathan Thomas. 44 Rue des Acacias, 75017, ici-selfcare.com.
Established in the 1960s, Leonor Greyl was Paris’s first natural hair care line — decades before the recent clean-beauty movement was even a blip on the horizon. At the institute, near Place de la Madeleine, the most in-demand treatment is Les Soin sur Mesure, or bespoke care, a 90-minute indulgence that includes oil-based masks in intoxicating scents, a steam infusion and a blissful neck, shoulder and scalp massage. The most frazzled and frayed locks don’t stand a chance. 15 Rue Tronchet, 75008, leonorgreyl.com.
Joelle Ciocco is a local skin-care institution, famed for its buccal massage that has a therapist donning plastic gloves and manipulating your face from the inside of your mouth. The treatment is invasive, but effective, and is just a small part of an otherwise relaxing experience — Ciocco’s products are a wonder on the skin. For a super boost against the elements, try the antipollution treatment, which promises to eliminate bad toxins and address concerns such as dehydration, redness and skin imperfections. 8 Place de la Madeleine, 75008, joelle-ciocco.com.
A former hot-air balloon factory (the open roof has since been glassed-over) and, later, once the director Luc Besson’s studio, the site of the new “social sports club” La Montgolfière is unique in both design and concept. Stripped back to its exposed iron beams with an atrium lit by suspended fluorescent lights, the space retains its industrial feel — an aesthetic that serves to enhance the bare-bones muscle-club identity. Members come here to work up a sweat, in boxing sessions, spin class, CrossFit, dance and yoga, but also to make friends — the ground floor features a co-working space, a cafe by local detox eatery Season, and a bar that caters regular events and exhibition openings. For those who want a little down time, there’s massage and a spacious chill-out zone with a hammam and sauna. 25 Rue Yves Toudic, 75010, lamontgolfiereclub.com.
Organic supermarkets have popped up all over Paris in recent years, but Bien Épicerie, which now has three locales, two in the Marais and one on the Left Bank, is by far the chicest of the bunch. A one-stop shop for everything from seasonal, organic produce to granolas of every conceivable variety, nut milks and natural skin-care products, this is the ultimate boutique shopping experience for those everyday essentials. bienlepicerie.com.
Organic Food Markets
Open-air markets are a happy, everyday occurrence in Paris, but there are just two in the city solely dedicated to organic produce. The most established takes place on Boulevard Raspail in the 14th Arrondissement every Sunday; a smaller market in the 11th Arrondissement (metro Voltaire) sets up shop every Wednesday and Saturday. Here you’ll find a selection of seasonal fruit and vegetables, along with seafood, and even wine (bien sûr). Arrive around lunch to sample freshly shucked oysters, plucked from the waters of Cancale that morning, and served with a glass of crisp white.
Glow on the Go!
This hole-in-the-wall boutique-cum-latte bar near the Place des Vosges is a shrine to all-natural beauty brands like the L.A. apothecary line Poppy Sunday, the botanical-based oil Clary Collection, and Sun Potion, with its skin foods and tonic herbs. There’s something here to address almost every care and concern, and you can sample the benefits of some of the ingredients in one of the tasty adaptogen-fueled lattes, available sur place or to-go. 25 Rue de Turenne, 75004, glowonthego-paris.fr.
Officine Universelle Buly
Stepping into an L’Officine Universelle Buly boutique is like stepping back in time. Outfitted like a 19th-century apothecary, the store has wall-to-floor oak cabinets stocked with a wide assortment of cold-pressed plant oils, powders, clays and even honeys with purported healing properties — all of which can be employed for D.I.Y. scrubs and masks. The historic French pharmacy brand was relaunched in 2014, foreshadowing a trend of resurrecting the age-old beauty practice of working with raw ingredients — now emulated by millennial start-ups like The Ordinary and LOLI. The selection in store can be a little overwhelming (though the ionized waters are a crowd pleaser), but staff members are all beauty experts. 6 Rue Bonaparte, 75006 and 45 Rue de Saintonge, 75003, buly1803.com.
The Daily Bread
Despite the carb aversion that pervades Anglo cultures, bread is still very much a staple of the French diet — served with every meal — which suggests that the classic French bakery is ripe for a healthy makeover. Enter Chambelland and the Fermentation Générale, both in the 11th Arrondissement. At the former, everything — from the meringue-topped lemon tarts to the five-grain loaves and the lip-smackingly salty olive-and-anchovy pissaladières — is completely gluten (though not guilt) free. At Fermentation Générale, which opened just a few weeks ago, a tasty range of fermented bread comes fresh out of the oven each day at 5 p.m. There are also jars of rainbow-colored pickled veggies and a selection of local natural wines available. Chambelland: 14 Rue Ternaux, 75011 chambelland.com; Fermentation Générale: 37, Rue de la Folie Méricourt, 75011.