Science that tastes great.
People are often looking for great things to do with teens in Paris, and last week I stumbled upon a fantastic address for just about any teen: Le Laboratoire, near Les Halles. Founded by the Harvard scientist David Edwards, with partners across the globe, Le Lab is a place where art and design meet science. It might sound strange—the idea of taking your teen to a science lab on vacation—but this one is like no other.
I was greeted at the door by a young, enthusiastic and quite pretty girl who explained Le Lab’s various products and what was currently being worked on. Any teen would surely have been seduced by her energy (and her style was not bad, either). All attention was in the air, on breathable foods. Want some energy without the coffee? Try Aeroshots. For a hit of chocolate without the calories, there’s Le Whif. And Philippe Starck has collaborated with Edwards on WA|HH, which offers the pleasures of alcohol, including a slight buzz, without its negative effects.
Some teens even showed up on their own.
If you don’t really want to consume anything, Le Whaf is amazing to watch and to sample, Cellbag is a lesson in geometry and Andrea, an air filter, is perfectly biological.
Le Lab has an exhibition space, and this fall it will be renovated to offer more interactive experiences to visitors. Until then, your teens will think they’ve entered a shop and have no idea that a science lesson is in their near future.
Pretty to look at, too.
After Le Lab, head around the corner for lunch at the 65-year-old Au Pied du Cochon. Thanks to its history of feeding the food vendors at the original Les Halles, this address is proud to be one of the few Parisian addresses open 24-7. You can enjoy some traditional French dishes, like steak tartare or French onion soup, while continuing with the science theme, studying the collection of bivalves on the menu or learning that there are exactly 32 bones in a pig’s foot. Adventurous teens may even test this claim by ordering one for lunch.
Not your average meal.
If your teen is into crafts, La Droguerie is the ideal postlunch shopping destination, and E. Dehillerin is just around the corner, awaiting exploration by burgeoning chefs. If fashion is what you’re looking for, the rue Etienne Marcel has everything your teen could hope for.
For checking out one of the local, very vibrant teen scenes, a quick stroll through Les Halles promises a moment surrounded by teens in Paris.
Au Pied de Cochon
Editor’s note: Great mother-and-daughter trips (or teen agendas) can be arranged by consulting with our partner Mimi at Paris Travel Group.