Friday, June 28, 2013

La Ville-Lumière

Just got back from a trip to France and the UK, and I thought I'd do a quick post about the hobby shops I found there. Before I left on my trip, I did a cursory search of the web, but the only page I found that reviewed Paris hobby shops was an IPMS Hawaii article on Hobby Shops in Paris dating from over 10 years ago.

The two shops from the list that I visited were ADV/Azimut Productions and EOL' Modelisme. Both shops have moved from their previous locations. I was looking for the Heller AMX 13/105, but it was out of stock at both shops.

ADV/Azimut is located at 50 Rue de Montreuil, but is actually in the courtyard of the building and cannot be seen from the street. There is a sign next to the doors for entering the courtyard with a buzzer to let you in. The shop is well stocked with armor kits and a smaller selection of ships and aircraft. I picked up a GCT 155mm AUF1, VAB 6x6, and Modern French Tank Crew from their ADV line, and a Lebanese M113 with ZU-23-2 from their BVM line.

I had a nice chat with the proprietor, and it seems that production of 1/72 ADV kits is currently on hiatus, with limited availability in the shop.

Also near ADV/Azimut is Minimini at 171 Boulevard Voltaire (both shops are in the vicinity of Cimetière du Père-Lachaise). Minimini seems to be primarily a diecast model shop, but I only looked at their window displays, since they were not open when I was there. They had some Oxford 1/76 diecast vehicles, but everything else seemed to be in larger scales.

EOL' is located at 3 Rue du Louvre, not far from the Louvre Museum. They have a good selection of models, but nothing that couldn't be found elsewhere. They also carry various gaming miniatures, in particular those from Fenryll.

After Paris, it was off to Lyon. I wasn't looking for hobby shops while there, but I stumbled upon a couple of them anyway. The first one was Miniatures Lyon located near the end of Rue de l'ancienne Prefecture.

The shop deals primarily with diecast vehicles, but the upper floor houses a decent selection of books, and a small selection of model kits.

The other model shop was not far away, but I don't remember the address. It was the first place in Europe where I've encountered discount stickers on models though.

Lastly, from Lyon I went to London. I thought that for sure I would find at least one hobby store while wandering about, but the only place I found that carried games or models was Hamleys. Mostly Airfix kits, with some Revell kits. They also had a decent number of Oxford diecast cars. I probably should have bought a couple, but I didn't.

I would have had a lot more pictures to share of other shops that I found in Paris and Lyon, medieval armor and weapons from the Musée de l'armée and the Tower of London, and other interesting things I saw, but unfortunately some @$$#0L3 stole my camera at Westminster Bridge. Arrgghh!!!!!