A Moment With... Alexandre Thumerelle

The man behind the most Parisian of bookstores

Alexandre Thumerelle’s apartment sits at the heart of the Marais and is a perfect reflection of his bookstore, with good vibes, lots of light and cherished collector’s items sourced from all around. There’s even an amazing tipi set up for his children in the middle of his living room. We catch up with this music-lover to discuss his undying love for Paris, the city he’s called home since birth.

Profession: Co-founder of bookstore and gallery 0fr. (Open Free Ready)

Neighborhood: 3rd arrondissement

As a Paris native, what habits were you born with?
Since I’m an early riser (usually the first one up in the morning), I’m lucky enough to see Paris, which I have happily called home since birth, wake on a daily basis. My ideal Parisian day involves three major highlights: starting off with a coffee at Le Progrès, working at my bookstore, 0fr., and ending the day with a bobun from Viet Siam in Belleville.
Le Progrès, 1, rue de Bretagne, 75003 Paris.
0fr., 20, rue Dupetit-Thouars 75003 Paris.
Viet Siam, 1, rue Rébéval, 75019 Paris.

What’s your advice for living life to the fullest in Paris?
Walk until you’re lost and dare to go everywhere. Have your coffee preferably standing at the counter in cafés, and hang around for a while. Head off the beaten path in Paris, where a story hides around every corner and behind every door. There’s so much diversity in this city, and you really see a great openness to others, with so many people busy doing what they love, independent, free and enthusiastic.

If Paris was a book, which would it be?
Our latest book immediately comes to mind: Bon Voyage Paris, at 0fr.

What makes you feel Parisian?

That’s a hard one to answer, even though my neighbors and friends never cease to tell me they find me very ‘Parisian’. For me, Parisians are active, funny, intelligent and sexy, and if I had to pick a certain trait to characterize them, it would without a doubt be indignation.

Do you have any techniques to help clear your mind?
It’s simple but works well, I lie down and close my eyes. But, if I ever need inspiration, a walk along Canal Saint Martin while the sun is shining always has a positive effect on me.

What gets you out of bed on difficult mornings?
Once you have a child, this question ceases to exist.

What’s your wellbeing routine?
Wake up early, go to bed late and drink Paris water, it’s excellent.

How do you stay in shape?
Walk, walk and walk some more. Get into the habit of doing everything by foot. It’s easy for me since the places I go in Paris are rarely ever more than thirty minutes from each other.

Do you have a French cuisine favorite?
Every Thursday at 0fr. we have a farmer from Burgundy who comes bearing freshly harvested fruits and vegetables. There’s nothing better, nor anything that will boost energy levels more than seasonal produce, picked fresh that very morning.
0fr., 20, rue Dupetit-Thouars 75003 Paris.

Photos: Saskia Lawaks