One of many Costes Brothers restaurants in the city, Café Marly is by far one of my favourites. I have been there for both lunch and dinner - and so far, lunch has been my meal of choice for a couple reasons. First, you get to eat during daylight hours which gives you the opportunity to sit in the sun and enjoy views of the Louvre as you eat (you're literally eating in the louvre at this café). Secondly, the prices won't be as expensive at lunch. Your bill will still be higher than standard, but when considering everything you get to experience when dining here - it's worth it.
For example - as mentioned before, you get full on, obstruction free views, of the famous Louvre pyramid, fountain and surrounding palace. You are actually sitting on the terrace of the Louvre palace - who knows what historic people have dinned, chatted about the beheading of Marie Antoinette or squinted in the afternoon sun in that same spot. On the way to the bathroom and inside the dining room, there are windows offering a free (well, 'free' - you are paying for dinner) view of sculptures that are inside the museum. Even after the museum has closed down, you can still get a very surreal peak at what's inside when nobody else is crowding the halls.
The food - amazing! The mashed potatoes - to die for! Seriously. If you go to Paris and are going to splurge on one lunch, this is it.
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