After spending two weeks in the French countryside in the Poitou-Charentes region, a week in Paris was well needed. T and I boarded the TGV for a two-hour ride to the Paris Montparnasse station. We were staying with friends so there was no need for a hotel stay. I had an aggressive schedule of sites I wanted to see but with less than a week in Paris and a hectic schedule of visiting friends, I had to pick my top five. On my bucket list was to go to the Palais Garnier, which was the setting for one of my favorite Broadway musicals of all time, The Phantom of the Opera. We stayed in La Colombe for the first part of our stay so getting to Palais Garnier was a breeze on the metro. It took us just 11 minutes to get to the 9th Arrondissement.
The architecture of the Palais Garnier, which is still in use as the official opera house in Paris, is breathtaking. The grandeur facade pales in comparison to the opulent interior architecture, which was built in the Baroque and Renaissance style by Charles Garnier. We arrived early to ditch the crowds and I’m glad we did so. It felt like we had the place to ourselves. A quick note, the Palais Garnier is free to visitors from 8 am to noon and 25 euros after. It’s worth the morning jaunt if you’re on a budget.
The Palais Garnier is currently hosting visitors for Phantom of the Opera themed game. Players are given masks at the start of their quest to free the Phantom of his curse by solving a series of puzzles alongside paid actors and musicians from the Symphonic Orchestra Divertimento. The participants have to accomplish their mission by running around iconic spaces inside the Palais Garnier: the Grand Staircase, the Avant Foyer, the Grand Foyer; the Glacier Gallery, the Glacier Room and the Phantom of the Opera House. The dress code? Black of course!
I wore the ‘Alina’ Embroidered gown by Tadashi Shoji for the occasion. Tadashi is one of my favorite designers because he designs breathtaking pieces as opulent as the Palais Garnier not only for standard sizes but for plus as well. This gown is currently on sale in all sizes for roughly $300, reduced from $508.