Christmas at the Parisian Department Stores

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New York City has a whole host of stores that go to town with their Christmas displays – Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Barneys, Bergdorf Goodman, Lord & Taylor and Bloomingdales. In London, we have Harrod’s, Harvey Nicks and Selfridges that get all creative with their store windows.  What about the department stores in Paris?  Parisian department stores have massive store fronts – Printemps is spread across two buildings and Galeries Lafayettes is across three.  That’s a whole lot of windows to decorate!!

The store windows at the Galeries Lafayettes are a real treat with animatronic and computer-controlled puppets.  They tell the really sweet story of a little red-haired girl whose toys come to life and enjoy playing in the snow and partying with her.

Galeries Lafayettes also has a series of windows promoting the new live action French Beauty and the Beast movie which will be released in France in February 2014.  The sets look sumptious and stunning and I’ll watch anything with Vincent Cassel!

The tree inside is a 65 foot giant tree extending four floors under the stained glass mosaic dome.  The tree is strung with 2 miles of lights and topped with a giant owl.  The tree skirt is a little village scene with animals who circle around the tree.  Every hour there is a light show which was a little lame, frankly.

This year, Printemps have their store windows dressed by Prada.  I am loving the cool dude Prada bear and the little girl bears in their colourful party dresses.

Each year, Printemps also do a floor show to entertain shoppers during the busy weekends.  This year, the floor show was a wizard with magic tricks which was not as good as last year’s show.  The 2012 show was a mannequin who came to life and then was swept off her feet by a dashing male dancer.  The romantic couple were serenaded by an opera singer.  My children (especially my daughter) were entranced.

Last year, it was Christian Dior who festooned the store windows with dolls dressed in vintage dresses ice skating in the park.  Absolutely charming.

The Printemps giant Christmas tree on the inside was fairly traditional with lots of sparkle and a giant advertising banner courtesy of Prada.

printemps tree

A Christmas display by two big name Parisian department stores  – Which do you prefer?  I honestly loved both.


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