“Dieu,” Serge Gainsberg once sang, “est un fumeur des havanes, c’est lui qui m’as dit que la fumee m’envoie a Paradis!” The sentiment from France’s iconic bad boy that God was a smoker of Havana cigars and that their smoke would carry him to paradise reflects the feeling that still weaves through cigar circles in the capital. Cigars are ingrained in the culture, memories of a different era, symbols of the art of living that the French hold so dear.
France is consistently named one of the top consumers of Cuban cigars in the world, with the extra distinction of receiving small-batch regional editions made especially for the French palate, such as the well-known Quai d’Orsay. Connoisseurs of fine cigars in Paris are akin to connoisseurs of any French luxury product. They’re passionate, knowledgeable and deeply connected to the product’s terroir.
With this in mind, it makes sense that the earthy odor of good cigars mainly perfumes a few arrondissements, where the love of the finer things in life merges with a certain sense of tradition. The highest proliferation of cigar-friendly addresses lay in what’s known as Paris’ golden triangle. The area in the 8th arrondissement is delineated by the grand Avenues Champs-Elysee, Montaigne, and George V and is studded with five-star hotels, Michelin-starred dining, luxury shopping and some of the most expensive real estate in the world. Swirl past the famous architecture and the iconic tourist must-sees, and you’ll land in some of the best places in the world to indulge your cigar passion.