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10 of the best restaurants in Paris

You’ll find some of the world’s very best restaurants in Paris. Food writer Alexander Lobrano selects the best of the best, with a galaxy of Michelin stars between them
As featured in our Paris city guide

Anyone wanting a grand-slam experience of Gallic gastronomic grandeur won’t do better than the glamorous dining room at the Hotel Meurice in the heart of the city. Though it was redecorated by Philippe Starck several years ago, it’s good French bones survived intact – mosaic floor, crystal chandeliers, heavy damask curtains at the windows overlooking the Tuileries Gardens across the street – and the magnificent space is animated by old-school but friendly service that’s as precise as a minuette. Chef Yannick Alléno bagged a third Michelin star in 2007, and his brilliantly inventive cooking is based on a deep knowledge of classical Escoffier vintage culinary technique. In addition to such recent creations as crispy green ravioli with a fricassee of snails and wild garlic, a starter, and spit-roasted red-wine marinated pigeon with red cabbage and apple juice, Alléno has become a dedicated locavore by occasionally featuring rare produce from the Ile de France – cabbage from Pontoise, honey from hives on the roof of Paris’s Opéra Garnier – on his regularly evolving menu.
• 228 rue de Rivoli, 1st, + 33 1 44 58 10 10, lemeurice.com. Métro: Tuileries. Open for lunch and dinner from Mon-Fri. Average €200. Jackets compulsory at dinner

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10 of the best hostels in London

From a former courthouse where the Clash stood trial to a Jacobean mansion where Byron stayed, travel blogger Dixe Wills shows budgeteers where to bed down in London
As featured in our London city guide

Styling itself as a boutique hostel, Palmer’s Lodge is a graceful Victorian Grade II-listed building that was once home to Samuel Palmer of Huntley and Palmers biscuits fame. Furnished with an eclectic mix of antiques, salvaged furniture from architectural sites and modern classics, the hostel boasts a restaurant in the scullery and a bar (serving cocktails) in the chapel. There are single sex and mixed dorms along with some private rooms for couples. Best of all, if two of you book one of the bespoke Jacobean double beds in a mixed dorm, one of you stays for free. And the beds have curtains around them. too.
40 College Crescent NW3, +44 (0)20-7483 8470, palmerslodge.co.uk, from £16pp

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