The French Embassy has pulled off a wonderful coup in bringing this gem-like French bookstore and reading room to Fifth Avenue. Named after the ethereal character from Marcel Proust’s In Search of Lost Time, the Jacques Garcia-designed (who else?) space is beautifully decked-out with comfy leather couches for cuddling up with a novel, and a gleaming constellation fresco on the ceiling of the two-storey space. The only French bookstore of its kind in the city, it’s a gift to New York—in one of the few remaining Stanford White-designed Beaux Arts buildings, no less.

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