Finally Discover The Greater Paris Guide
Discovering Greater Paris at last!
Find out why he launched this website about Greater Paris and his adventures to get there!
Hello Renaud Charles, can you tell us about « Enlarge your Paris »? What is its history? Who started it? When did you start?
Enlarge your Paris is a media that was created in 2013 by a group of journalists living in Paris and its suburbs. We all felt a need: to access better information about the suburbs. The information we had access to was not enough, especially for culture and leisure.
Cultural information in Paris is abundant, which is logical because there is a plethora of places, but there is also a plethora of places in the suburbs and we don’t know it. When I say we, I mean the suburbanites themselves, starting with me.
How did the idea come about?
I had just moved to the suburbs and being a journalist, I received a lot of press releases for events in the suburbs, exhibitions etc… I then looked for where I could get information, and I couldn’t find it.
So I concluded that the information didn’t exist if I couldn’t find it.
Other journalist friends made the same observation and we started, without really knowing what we were getting into.
Why did you choose this name for your website: « Enlarge your Paris »?
This name really started out as a joke, because I don’t know if you’ve made the connection with a spam message that’s still being sent… » Enlarge your… » I’ll let you complete it ?
In the end, we really chose this name for the taste of potachery *laughs*
How many readers do you have and who are they?
In 2020 we reached more than 1 million readers, almost 1 and a half million. 60% of our readers are Parisians, and they’re mostly female readers.
We have succeeded in federating an audience around our subjects, which are culture, leisure, but also a lot: ecology and the social economy.
All our subjects have a link: they create a bond and sharing.
They are moments of meetings.
How many articles do you produce per month?
About fifty, with a newsletter that comes out every week on the different things to do in Greater Paris.
You are the author of the book « The Greater Paris Guide », what can be found in this book?
This book is an account of this global territory, of the region and of Greater Paris. We try to think of the Greater Paris in its entirety.
This book is distributed in France, the United States and Europe. You can find it in bookstores, fnac, amazon ect…
What is different from a guidebook on Paris?
Before this guide, there was no guide to Greater Paris.
Those that existed were intended for foreign tourists.
In this book, we tell a story about the region and Greater Paris. We tell the story of a territory that is larger than Paris, and this is our difference from a classic guide.
Behind this guide there is an imagination that tells us « Paris is not what you think, Paris is bigger ».
It is not simply a series of addresses.
We decided to make a map that breaks down the borders: we chose to draw 10 large districts and not the departments.
For example we drew the Street Gallery district: we called it that because there is street art absolutely everywhere! Both in the 13th arrondissement and in Vitry. The idea is to say « go from one to the other », by bike, by metro, or on foot. The two cities are only a few kilometers from each other.
Behind the names of these neighborhoods, there is a link and this is what we will tell through this book.
Can you give us your 3 incredible encounters due to these experiences?
- The Ferme aux 4 étoiles in the Yvelines is incredible. It’s a farm that used to raise livestock and that one day wanted to develop sales and started a small restaurant. The farmer launched a farm store and a restaurant open on weekends. Thanks to the information and articles produced, this has generated 70% of his turnover today. Hence the importance of local information which is absolutely fundamental.
- La Boutique du Futur in Montrouge is an engineer who sells his own creations, his inventions, from the most useful to the most eccentric. He is the one who invented the « babyplane » spoon to encourage children to eat!
- The Urban Shepherds of Seine St Denis, because these shepherds have a sense for the maintenance of green spaces and the contact of the animal and the nature. I find that quite exceptional.
What is your favorite quote?
We are what we make of what others wanted to make of us – Sartre
What is your favorite French word?
3 words for the great Paris ?
3 magical places in Greater Paris ?
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