Paris’s best theatre bars

Where to grab a bite and a pint before curtain time
By Elsa Pereira & Alex Dudok de Wit |
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A city this devoted to theatre and drinking ought to know how to combine the two. And Paris certainly does, as demonstrated by this range of bars and cafes, each located inside one of Paris's theatres. They may not make for an obvious drinking destination, but that's part of the appeal: here you'll find no tourists, hipsters or posers – only a room abuzz with the fevered chatter of theatre-lovers. Encore!

Click on the arrows below to view the selection.

Théâtre de Vanves

icon-location-pin Paris et sa banlieue

Small, cosy and lovingly decorated, the bar at the Théâtre de Vanves will please fans of the legendary German choreographer Pina Bausch, whose work serves as a theme of sorts.

Theatre, Public and national theatres

Théâtre Monfort

icon-location-pin 15 arrondissement

Straddling the Petite Ceinture like a giant pop-up marquee, the curiously shaped Théâtre Monfort draws the punters – especially the barbecue-loving kind – in summer with its glorious wooded terrace bar. And don't forget the end-of-year seasonal launch party for some guaranteed festive fun.

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Théâtre de la Tempête

icon-location-pin Picpus

Anyone willing to schlep to the other side of the Bois de Vincennes will be rewarded with this gem of a bar, attached to a no less lovely theatre. Appetising food menu (quiches, sandwiches, tarts) aside, one of the bar's main attractions is the display of small dioramas of the theatre's current shows.

Théâtre du Rond Point

icon-location-pin Champs-Elysées

Since its revamp in 2002, the restaurant of the Théâtre du Rond Point has reigned supreme over the theatre bar scene. Its charm comes down to its canny mix of the chic and the colourful, the bourgeois and the bohemian ('bobo' in the truest sense). Comfortably ensconsed in one of its blue sofas, you'll easily forget that you've come here for a show.

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Les Ateliers de Paris
© Patrick Berger

Les Ateliers de Paris

icon-location-pin Picpus

Situated in the Cartoucherie complex of theatres on the fringes of the Bois de Vincennes, l'Atelier de Paris plays host to a range of dance productions and workshops, as well as the yearly June Events festival. With spring comes barbecue season, when the theatre opens its convivial outdoor seating area and hip young culture vultures flock here to drink and make merry. You can practically smell the salty Mediterranean air.

Theatre, Experimental

Théâtre Gérard Philipe

icon-location-pin Paris et sa banlieue

Creaking floorboards, oriental rugs, plush armchairs, exquisite tarts and generously sized sandwiches... When the Théâtre Gérard Philipe was renovated in 2013, the owners ensured that the restaurant wasn't spared the makeover. The result? One of the most elegantly designed venues on this list.

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Cinemas

Théâtre 13

icon-location-pin 13e arrondissement

This youth-oriented, state-sponsored theatre in the 13th is home to a rather functional neon-lift cafeteria, where salads, tomato 'n' mozzarella combos and glasses of red are sold at reasonable prices.

Théâtre Cité Internationale
Mario Pignata Monti

Théâtre de la Cité Internationale

icon-location-pin 14e arrondissement

With its marble stairwell and attic-level auditorium, the Théâtre de la Cité Internationale, situated slap-bang in the middle of the campus of the same name, makes for an unusual venue. The spacious bar-cum-restaurant sells hot mint teas and chocolate sponge cakes to hungry students, while the bookshop next door offers ample distraction to those with time to kill before the curtain rises.

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