Café de Flore
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The Café de Flore, at the corner of Boulevard Saint-Germain and Rue St. Benoit, in the 6th arrondissement, is one of the oldest and the most prestigious coffeehouses in Paris, celebrated for its famous clientele.
The classic Art Deco interior of all red seating, mahogany and mirrors has changed little since World War II. Like its main rival, Les Deux Magots, it has hosted most of the French intellectuals during the post-war years.
In his essay "A Tale of Two Cafes" and his book Paris to the Moon, American writer Adam Gopnik mused over the possible explanations of why the Flore had become, by the late 1990s, much more fashionable and popular than its rival, Les Deux Magots, despite the fact that the latter cafe was associated with Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, Albert Camus, and other famous thinkers of the 1940s and 1950s. Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai was known to be a frequent patron of Café de Flore during his years in France in the 1920s.
The Café de Flore opened early in the Third Republic, in 1885.
The name is taken from a sculpture of Flora, goddess of flowers and the season of spring in Roman mythology, located on the opposite side of the boulevard. In the late 19th century, Charles Maurras wrote his book Au signe de Flore, on the first floor, where in 1899 the Revue d'Action Française was also founded.
The Café de Flore offers a wide menu range from teas, coffees, hot chocolates, to alcoholic drinks and juices—from snacks to full meals—including toasties and croissants, omelettes, salads, soups and desserts.
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