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Tina & Catriona in Paris
Tina & Catriona in Paris

Paris with Tina Arena

Thursday, July 7, 2005

In the late 1970s, a pint-sized Tina Arena hit the small screen on Johnny Young's Young Talent Time. The seven year old's voice and looks won the hearts of countless Australians, and we have all been interested in following her ascending career.

Tina has received countless nominations and awards for singing and song-writing — her songs have been covered by artists as diverse as Winona Judd and Casey Donovan. She has performed with Stevie Wonder, Lionel Ritchie and Donna Summer, had roles in Cabaret and Notre Dame in Australia, France and the West End. She also performed at the opening of the Sydney Olympic Games.

Tina has toured the world for decades and has recorded albums in three languages. She has lived in Los Angeles and London and, while still a true Aussie at heart, has fallen in love with Paris. She now lives there and, like many before her, finds the city inspiring and says it brings out the best of her talents. Her home is in a central part of the city, overlooking a leafy park and she's surrounded by cafés, boulangeries and shops selling every imaginable type of fresh, local produce. Getaway was delighted to catch up with Tina and to discover some of her favourite places in The City of Lights.

Montmartre, high on the only hill overlooking Paris, has long been famous for its artists. This is the place to go if you want to have your portrait drawn. You can walk around this small square and look over the shoulder of an artist or sip a coffee at one of the many cafés.

Nearby is the Basilica du Sacre Coeur. It was built at the end of the 19th century and the white building dominates the city. It has been a place of perpetual adoration and worship since 1885. It contains an enormous mosaic depicting Christ with outstretched arms. The nearby bell tower holds the Savoyarde. Cast in Annecy in 1895, it is one of the world's heaviest bells, weighing 19 tonnes. It is a wonderful place to be at sunset.

Ile Saint Louis has everything you want to see that is typically Parisian. It is the island next to Notre Dame, in the heart of Paris and apart from refined architecture, has some of the city's best specialty food shops.

The island is connected to the “mainland” and Ile de la Cité by five bridges. It is one of Paris's most fashionable and expensive districts with 18th century houses and a village-like life. Worth a visit for its beauty, Ile Saint Louis is also known as having the best ice-cream in France!

The Pompidou Centre is a futuristic arts centre located in one of the oldest districts in Paris, the Beaubourg. President Pompidou wanted the gallery to bring art and culture to the "man in the street". Architects Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers wanted to move away from traditional art galleries with everything in rooms and works by Picasso, Braqua, Ernst, Magritte, Chagall, Matisse and other enthralling painters are displayed in modern, open surroundings.

The infrastructure is displayed on the outside with the escalator tubes and utility pipes climbing around the building. It is as if the building has been turned inside out.

The Museum has large collections of paintings spanning the 20th century and including works by the most famous artists Picasso, Braque, Max Ernst, Magritte, Chagall, Matisse, Delaunay, Kandinsky, Klee and many others. The George Restaurant on the centre's roof is a good place to rest and contemplate all you have seen.

French music
So Frenchy So Chic is a collection of artists who have sculpted the contemporary French music landscape to give it its versatility, diversity and character with a certain "Je ne sais quoi". Listen and watch the best of French music.

Search for French Pop music or search for French Chanson music.


Paris, the capital of France.


Flight Centre has return economy airfares to Paris with Emirates. Valid for sale until July 19, 2005, and for travel between October 4 and November 11, 2005. Conditions apply. Prices, including taxes are:
  • Melbourne and Sydney: $1724
  • Brisbane: $1728
  • Darwin: $1788
  • Perth: $1879
  • Adelaide: $1902
    To book a flight, call Flight Centre 131 600

    Please note that the prices listed are valid at the time of filming.

    More information

    Get Set Travel Group
    French Travel Connection
    601/83 Mount Street
    North Sydney 2060
    Ph: (02) 9966 1177
    Fax: (02) 9966 1455
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