France is reputed as a country of romance and charm for good reasons. It is the most visited country worldwide, with tourism making up 8% of its gross domestic product, according to the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In 2019, around 90 million tourists worldwide visited France.
This is not so far-fetched because many people know France is one of the most luxurious countries in the world. Everything in this country screams sophistication, from the language to the architecture, food, and even the way French locals carry themselves. The country presents several opportunities to indulge yourself in the good things of life.
So, if you’re looking to explore the “je ne sais quoi” spirit of France but don’t know where to start or what to do, this article is for you. From gambling tables to fine dining, below are some of the most luxurious experiences France has to offer.
Let’s start with gaming tables
Casino gambling has been an integral part of French culture for centuries now. The first casino was launched in the 18th century by the order of Cardinal Mazarin. In fact, the first roulette game was played in France in 1796. Today, several famous casinos offer games like roulette, blackjack, and slots, but French gamblers seem to favor poker the most.
Poker attracts locals and tourists looking to explore card games in luxurious French styles. Several luxury poker establishments offer the elegant backdrop needed for a refined gaming experience. Poker is legal in France since it is more of a game of skill than chance. Now, the game has become even more popular, thanks to online gambling sites. Many players now prefer the digital experience to going to a physical casino, since those online platforms usually provide educational materials as well, to learn the best tips for a winning poker game, or to obtain a good strategy before getting into a tournament.
Online gambling has taken over the gambling scene because of the many benefits it offers. It is convenient, allowing players to compete from the comfort of their homes. It also offers a safe and regulated environment for French players to enjoy their favorite casino games, thanks to anti-fraud technology and secure payment systems.
Have a fine dining experience at Michelin-star restaurants
France is renowned worldwide for its sophisticated cuisine, especially the fine dining restaurants. So, many people visit the country to enjoy good food. The country has the highest number of Michelin-star restaurants worldwide – over 630 as of early 2023. These restaurants offer their customers a luxurious dining experience using fresh local ingredients. They attract foodies, gourmet enthusiasts, sommeliers, and other lovers of fine dining worldwide looking to indulge in sophisticated French cuisine.
While these restaurants often have pricey menus, costing around $100-200 per person minus wine, the exceptional dining experience is worth the splurge. The meals are prepared by expert chefs who create classic French cuisine in a modern way.
Michelin-star restaurants don’t just serve good food; the ambiance of the restaurants matches the quality of the food. The ornate interiors and impeccable customer service are quite impressive. For those seeking a truly memorable fine dining experience in France, a Michelin-star restaurant promises to satisfy.
Enjoy a fun night at the Paris Opera
Cabaret shows are an iconic part of French culture, dazzling audiences with singing, dancing, and comedy. You can find all these and more at the luxurious Paris Opera (also called Palais Garnier). Charles Garnier designed it in the 17th century, and it is one of Paris’ most famous cultural institutions.
With its grand marble staircase, massive chandelier, and Chagall ceiling painting, the interior alone makes the Paris Opera a must-see. Attending a performance at the Palais Garnier opera house allows visitors to see world-class productions in an opulent historical setting.
Tour the Eiffel Tower privately
No trip to Paris would be complete without visiting the iconic Eiffel Tower. While there are public tickets to climb the iconic Eiffel Tower at around $20, luxury travelers can arrange private tours of the Parisian landmark. These exclusive tours allow groups of 2-14 people to avoid long lines and crowds. Private guests can ride up the tower in a private elevator with a personal guide.
Once at the top observation deck, the guide shares history and facts about the Eiffel Tower and Paris cityscape. Private nighttime tours are also available if you want to see the Eiffel Tower lit up. While pricing varies, most private tours cost $300-600 total.
Visit other historical sites
Beyond the Eiffel Tower, France has countless luxurious historical sites. Guests can tour the Palace of Versailles and its Hall of Mirrors, stroll the medieval streets of Carcassonne, or explore lavish châteaus in the Loire Valley. For wine lovers, you can indulge in private tastings in the cellars of Bordeaux châteaus for an elevated oenological experience. You can employ the services of a tour guide to gain insight into the luxury of French royalty and nobility throughout history.
With luxurious experiences around every corner, it’s easy to see why France attracts those seeking to indulge in a good life. From sipping champagne at a Michelin-star restaurant to placing bets at an elegant casino to seeing an opera in a lavish Parisian theater, France offers many options for travelers to experience the finer things in life.
Of course, there are many tips about how to manage your budget in France and what activities are not worth the cost, since even simple pleasures like croissants and coffee at a French café take on an air of luxury. France has perfected the art of elegant living, guaranteeing visitors delight in its “joie de vivre.”