A Restroom Secret

Each arrondissement has its own Mairie, or town hall (and local mayor), usually built in the 19th century in grand style (and as weddings must be performed at the town hall first, before the church, they are all equipped with quite grand Salles de Mariage). As these are public buildings, they don’t restrict access. A short wander around (and possibly asking at the info desk) will soon reveal les toilettes. My favorite is in the 5th arrondissement, facing the Panthéon. There are gorgeous impressionist frescos on the walls with scenes from Luxembourg Gardens, and Lalique glass doors leading to the restrooms at the top of a winding staircase with decorative wrought-iron railings.


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