Party Earth Review A lot has changed for the gay Parisian community since La Champmeslé first opened in 1979, but this popular lesbian bar has never loosened its ties to the movement, and consistently hosts exhibits, musical acts, and LGBT... ... read full review
4 Rue Chabanais
3: Quatre Septembre, Bourse; 7, 14: Pyramides
01 42 96 85 20
Les Halles / Rivoli - 1er / 2eme, Paris –
A lot has changed for the gay Parisian community since La Champmeslé first opened in 1979, but this popular lesbian bar has never loosened its ties to the movement, and consistently hosts exhibits, musical acts, and LGBT-themed shows.
The deep violet but otherwise unassuming façade barely hints at the venue’s proclivities, though such refined subtlety might be expected from the oldest lesbian bar in the city.
Inside, customers will find more blatant expressions of pride, from the large rainbow flags mounted on the white stone walls to a table spread of LGBT tourist magazines like Tribu, though it’s clear the calm and collected regular clientele have little need for much flash.
Paintings by local gay and lesbian artists hang throughout the space, slotted in around leaflets advertising upcoming fundraisers and musical acts held on most Saturdays, as well as the quasi-regular tarot card readings that happen on most Tuesdays.
Tiny tea candles, rosy pink lighting, and centuries-old wooden pillars give the room a cozy antique vibe, and evenings usually find couples – mainly, but not exclusively lesbian – tucked away in back corners, cuddling and swapping sweet nothings over glasses of white wine.
The basic drinks list is hardly the main draw at this always mellow bar, but La Champmeslé stands out not only as a great introduction to gay Paris, but as a great way to meet a sophisticated lady, Parisian or otherwise.
Local and visiting lesbians of every ilk in need of a calm place to hang, LGBT couples, lots of gay tourists, and a smattering of straight dudes, late 20s.
La Champmeslé hosts a number of events to support gay artists, from painting expos to fairly regular Saturday night concerts. Tarot card readings on Tuesdays at around 9pm. Literature Night (book readings, author signings, etc.) on Thursdays.
Ambient lounge music conducive to conversation if a live act is not playing.
Beer €4–€6, wine €3–€8, spirits €5+, cocktails €10.
Nice casual: nice shirts, designer jeans, fitted sweaters, comfortable skirts.
Tuesdays to get in on the tarot readings, though patrons should call ahead to confirm, or Saturdays for the regular live music or other LGBT events that consistently draw a big crowd.
Stuart Friendly (16 Rue Marie Stuart) is a popular brunch spot, coffee shop, and tea house that’s also the self-proclaimed “premiere hetero-friendly restaurant in Paris.”