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Jan 17, 2009 03:50 AM

Help? Very well-lit restaurants/bistros in Paris

My wife and I will be in Paris the first week in March, our 12th trip in the last 20 years. We know our way around pretty well, but I have a special request for help from folks here.

My wife's eyesight is badly compromised from 47 years as a Type 1 diabetic, and there's been a noticeable decline in the last 12 months. The doctors can't do much, we've seen the best specialists, so it's really a question of coping with it as best she can. As a result, she really struggles in restaurants that have low lighting. What most of us perceive as reduced but adequate lighting, she perceives as darkness. Twilight before sunset, for instance, seems like midnight to her, to give you some frame of reference.

I fear that some of our old favorite haunts, such as Le P'tit Troquet, are just too dark for her now. OTOH, a place like La Coupole has the kind of brightness she needs...but we've already eaten there, and would like to find other options.

I'd be grateful for suggestions for restaurants that are very well-lit, very bright lights, please...and if possible, no poorly lit access to rest rooms down a narrow/treacherous flight of stairs. I know that's asking a lot, but I'm grateful for any suggestions we get.

Our price range: lunch for 2 (sans wine) priced around 50 to 75 Euros, and dinner for 2 without wine priced from 75 to 125 Euros.


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  1. You might want to first review those restaurants listed as "acces handicapes"; that should insure easy access to the restrooms. lists over 900 of these. Good luck.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Oakglen

      Lunch time at George on top of the Pompidou Ctr is filled with sunlight, haven't been for dinner... a bit steep in price but great views of the city...(menu probably on line) Petite Pontoise was fairly bright for dinner and good. Have you considered bringing a battery operated booklight to help with menu reading? Chartier is pretty bright, as is the Glorious Le Train Bleu in the Gare de Lyon. Bofinger is bright but the bathrooms are downstairs (it think a fairly comfortable staircase) and a bit dim, but historic and lovely. I'll try to keep thinking....

      1. re: Oakglen

        Two that will work are Flora Danica (great seafood) and Clos des Gourmets; both have handicap access and great food. All of the brasseries are well lit, but being older establishments, rest rooms are not easily accessed, as I recall.

      2. Two places I like came immediately to mind, La Cagouille in the 14eme, and Macéo on the 1ier.

        1. If memory serves, L'os a Moelle was pretty bright - yellow walls and plenty of overhead lighting. The restrooms were on the same level as the dining area and very easy to access. And, the food is very good!

          1 Reply
          1. re: shopwinedinefine

            Yes, it is definitely bright, and I wholeheartedly agree about the food.