Le mail burger

Since being redeveloped in 2015, the mail François Mitterrand has quickly become a hotspot for conviviality in Rennes and is lined with new bars and restaurants with bustling terraces. Have a wander along the mail to get a feel for the thành phố on this busy 17th century artery, previously known as the mail des Champs-Elysées.

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The trendy new quarter

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Welcome to lớn the mail! Previously known as the Promenade du Mailbefore being rechristened, on 1April 1996, with the name of the former French president, this boulevard in Rennes was created in 1677 (see below) and given the mythological name themail des Champs Elysées.For a number of years, it has once again been the place to go to“have sầu a well-deserved break”in good company. As a trendy new quarter, it has become the go-to place for brunch or a drink in the evening, not to mention at the weekover, before you head out on one of the many cycle routes, in the direction of the setting sun, like a lone cowboy, laden down with organic produce for a picnic.

“I only go out on the mail”is the new adage of Rennes. It is now the place to lớn hold all get-togethers. And if you are passing through Rennes, it would be remiss khổng lồ not have sầu a stroll along the mail, the new nerve sầu centre cthua trận lớn where the two branches of the river meet & where Rennes’ ancient name came from. It couldn’t be easier khổng lồ get to: starting from the quays and the place de la République, you will see the liner-shaped Cap Mail building designed by Jean Nouvel, where the promenade starts & stretches to lớn the jardin de la Confluence garden.

The ramblas at the city’s confluence

In the afternoon, it’s a tree-lined road of almost 700 metres punctuated with plane trees, Lebanon cedars and little “follies” that are ikhuyễn mãi giảm giá spots to take a break in the shade. When the sun shines on Brittany, you could almost believe sầu that you were in the south of France. Particularly in the afternoon, & more so during the cocktail hour, the bar và coffe terraces và glasses fill up right before your eyes. People come here to lớn play palets & mölkky khổng lồ enjoy time with friends well inkhổng lồ the night.

Have sầu a drink, brunch or eat on an outside terrace

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The mail François Mitterrand is the place lớn go khổng lồ sit en terrasse: between les Grands Gamins, Oh My Biche, la Cabane, La Piste and l’Echappée, there is a multitude of options. Large tables are mix under trees & in front of colourful façades. And don’t be afraid khổng lồ cốt truyện them with strangers, that’s how it works in Brittany.

As for what’s on the plate, we recommkết thúc the accras & tapas at l’Echappée (the people also have sầu the Hibou và the Saint-Germain) that you order at the counter before heading out khổng lồ sit on the terrace or inkhổng lồ neighbouring la Piste, which is also managed by the same team. A little further east, les Grands Gamins is one of the nicest bistros in the area và was one of the first lớn initiate the trkết thúc on the new mail“Conviviality và good humour” is their attitude at all times. The weekkết thúc brunch is very popular và it’s worth making a reservation or arriving early. Further up, Oh My Bibít, a coffee shop that offers grilled cheeses & seasonal dishes at reasonable prices, is another lovely spot.

Full of new places

On the other side of the mail, if you are looking for a healthy restaurant for food lovers look no further than My Bouvier, a tea house, bakery và snachồng bar by Thierry Bouvier, established in a bright, loft-style “contemporary workshop”. Although it is the most recent to lớn open its doors on the mail, in June 2018, la Cabane adds an Iberian touch to the “Ramblas of Rennes”. The new tapas restaurant/bar is mix up in a house with a green façade & a Creole feel. The barrel tables on the terrace and the inside with its delightful mezzanine give sầu it a bodega-style atmosphere: tapas, Basque and Spanish beers, it’s all here. Menus & continuous service from noon to lớn 11p.m. from Thursday khổng lồ Sunday.

La piste, bar, 68 mail François Mitterrvà +33(0)257215399L’échapée, street-food bar, 68 mail François MitterrandOh my biche, coffee shop, 18 mail François Mitterrvà +33(0)982286636La cabane, bodega & tapas bar, 12 mail François Mitterrand +33(0)299689389

Stochồng up on organic produce and bargains


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The mail is not just a place lớn party và enjoy propping up the bar. We have found the best places to lớn stoông chồng up on regional & local produce, including local beer and much more. Firstly, head to lớn the mail’s organic market, which is held every Wednesday afternoon. From 3p.m. lớn 8p.m., around đôi mươi producers from Ille-et-Vilaine và other departments of Brittany offer bread, fruits & vegetables, crepes and galettes, fish, poultry and much more. There is enough on offer khổng lồ buy everything you could possibly need for your locally-sourced organic picnic.

On the second Sunday of each month, from 9a.m. to 6p.m., the Rennes flea market welcomes bargain hunters at the top of the mail. It’s the meeting place for second-h& goods traders and second-hand book sellers, where you’ll find inexpensive furniture, second-hand clothes và vintage decorations. Another gourmet address lớn keep in mind is le Coin Mousse, a beer cellar where it is well worth trying (in moderation of course) a selection of their French craft beers. A little further along the Grands Gamins, l’épicerie du Mail grocery store also offers a wide range of high-unique Breton beers, wines and fresh produce. Just like at le Coin Mousse, you can sample the produce while sitting on the terrace. Because Brittany is also a wine trail destination!

Mail organic market, every Wednesday afternoon, from 3 p.m. to lớn 8 p.m..Rennes flea market, every second Sunday of the month, from 9 a.m. to lớn 6 p.m..Le coin mousse, 4 mail François Mitterrand, +33(0)223461871

A huge playground


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The mail has rediscovered its original purpose: as a playground. Most establishments provide Breton palets, a favourite pastime for the people of Rennes. A board, discs, a little agility & practice… don’t be afraid khổng lồ ask the locals khổng lồ explain the subtleties in the rules of palets. You’ll quickly come to love it. Like pétanque in the south of France, palets is mainly an excuse to lớn meet up & have sầu a good time with family và friends. For children, there are artificially grassed areas or small play areas with swings và slides, so they can have just as much fun as their parents.

Right at the end of the mail, other games await at Warp Zone, an iconic e-sports bar for fans of retro games, online gaming and arcades. They also have sầu a cocktail bar – open lớn all, not just gamers – that enjoys the advantage of being particularly well positioned to lớn watch the sunphối during summer.

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Festival theatre and convivial events


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The mail is the theatre for a number of participative events & festivals often take over its spaces. The Fleurs du Mail theatre festival takes place in June & the Les Tombées de la Nuit team loves to put on events, especially since Dominoes in năm ngoái. During World Music Day on 21 June, crowds gather to listen khổng lồ contemporary music performers. In April, it’s both the start và finish line of theRennes Urban Trail. Even in winter, you can warm up at theChristmas marketand ride the Ferris wheel from where you can enjoy stunning and chất lượng views of the đô thị. In February, theUrbaines festivaltransforms the thành phố inlớn a stadium for street sports and other sporty people occupy the spaces all year round. For all 12 months of the year, the mail is alive sầu & bustling with concerts in bars, themed evenings và cultural events.

And if you hurt yourself on the mail?


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Street workout you say? This street-based sport is becoming increasingly popular. CrossFit equipment is available in the middle of the mail. A few sets of pull-ups, push-ups and burpees could be just what you need to lớn eliminate all the calories gained on those bar và coffe terraces. For those who are keen on interval training, athletics tracks are outlined on the ground at different distances for sprinting và warming up before heading along the towpath for awaterside run.“No pain, no gain”: we also like khổng lồ work a little on the mail!

And if you want khổng lồ treat yourself after all those exercises, head khổng lồ the Kerfit wellbeing và fitness studio that offers massages and lower impact sports activities (aerial yoga, pilates, etc.) This new wellbeing studio is tucked away in a peaceful courtyard. If you are looking for a traditional thể hình during your stay in Rennes, there is also the Elancia gym on the mail.


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History of the mail:a tree-lined promenade

In French, the term mail refers khổng lồ a tree-lined promenade, with the name originating from a very popular 17th-century game that was a type of predecessor khổng lồ polo. In Rennes, its initial construction dates baông xã khổng lồ this period: in 1677, the Duke of Chaulnes decided to lớn bản đồ out a long tree-lined street that was not really intended for this sport, but primarily as a place for parliamentary elites to stroll. The Rennes mail was therefore called the“Mail des Champs-Elysées”, in reference to a neighbouring area with spaces filled with plants và the Duke’s stables. The mail of this era was closed at night by a drawbridge.“Above sầu all, the mails were places khổng lồ walk where people came to be seen & show off. However, the one in Rennes also had a political side as it was a dead-kết thúc facing the west & the setting sun. Symbolically, it was a way of conveying in its layout the desire khổng lồ develop Brittany, starting with Rennes,và lớn spread the king’s decisions out khổng lồ the ends of the earth”.explains Gilles Brohan, head of the heritage department at the Tourist Office.

In the 1800s, the dead-end becomes a traffic route

The mail was later reorganised & became less elitist,“in the 18th century, trees were planted there & the canals were doubled lớn drain the Vilaine”adds Gilles Brohan. During the 19th century, the mail hosted festive events, patriotic banquets và a summer fair, while the winter fair took place on the Champs de Mars.

The turning point in the mail’s purpose came in 1840. At the same time as the reorganisation works on the Ille-et-Rance canal & the diversion of the Vilaine’s course, the mail became a traffic route intersected by the main Paris-Brest road. A number of garages and industrial businesses set up there, which meant the area lost is peacefulness and charm. A station for the Ille-et-Vilaine tram was even built on the place de la Mission. In the car-crazy post-war period, it was overrun by sad open-air parking spaces before rediscovering its initial purpose in 2015 as a shaded promenade primarily for pedestrians and cyclists & somewhere pleasant khổng lồ stroll, go shopping or have sầu a drink on a terrace.


The mail is a good reflection of the variety in Rennes’ heritage that mixes different styles and different eras. Although the approaches lớn the promenade were built later and although many more modern buildings have sầu replaced the old houses, there are still some architectural curiosities to see if you just look up. Begin at the start of the mail, near to the loông chồng that opens towards the Ille-et-Rance canal. Take a look at the little lock-keeper’s house on the other side, which harks baông xã to the presence of the old port. Just behind it, another boat can be seen: Cap Mail, the luxury liner-style building designed by the Ateliers Jean Nouvel, with its plate-glass panelling và its living wall on the river side.

Art deco, ceramics & unusual architecture

Opposite this piece of contemporary architecture, an odd pink house catches the eye at number 8. On the archway is a decorative keystone sculpted with a horseshoe, pliers and a hammer, highlighting without a doubt the previous presence of a blacksmith, established when the mail became a traffic route khổng lồ Brest in the 19th century. Just a bit further along on the same side, at number 48, a building from the 1960s combines angles with a rounded façade. Opposite, a new building has continued this same curve sầu. The 1930s building at number 52 has kept its art deteo balconies, a style that can be found everywhere in the đô thị. At number 54, the house, which is the corner with the rue Coulabin, is decorated with colourful ceramics around the moulding. Across the road at number 56 is a building from the 1930s that was formerly a shirt manufacturer.

At number 68, we go a little further baông chồng in time with a traditional 1920s house that is decorated in brick and ceramic. Impossible to miss, it is where the La Piste bar is established. The fresco by graphic designer Maxime le Clanbịt và the Atelier Vandale depicts a cycdanh mục và is a nod lớn the name of the bar và the cycle path.

Not far from there, on the odd numbered side, an unusual architectural feat has gone up at the kết thúc of the mail. The three-storey building, with its unconventional design by the Barré-Lambot architects, was prize-winning, but the restaurant for which it was built has since closed. Staying on this side of the mail, retrace your steps to number 91 khổng lồ contemplate the entrance to lớn a large house with a double archway & a tent-shaped roof. This is actually a copy of a house in Lille that dates baông xã khổng lồ 1912.

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Now that you’ve uncovered these surprising discoveries on the mail, it is time khổng lồ sit & simply enjoy it, on a bench or under one of the “follies” mix up in năm ngoái. These shaded structures comprise an unusual net of slatted leaves in a mesh of braided copper by artist Stéphanie Buttier.


Chuyên mục: Mail